Magical Girl Spec-Ops Asuka : A More Terrible War

Episode 3

Motto Hidoi Sensō” (もっとひどい戦争)

We’ve seen just what the girls had to fight in their war, the aftermath of the war and now “A More Terrible War” is starting and it is going to affect Asuka more then she could imagine.

It continues to be a wonderful blend of a cutesy Slice-of-Life anime and a dark and gritty war story.

Whilst this episode had the girls in swimsuits and just hanging about at school it started with Just Cause Mia, another of the Legendary Five, fighting her way into drug cartel’s den just to find a torture victim tied to a chair muttering to himself. The stark contrast in what we’re seeing every passing scene is unsettling. Just like the Terror Weapons themselves, they are teddy bears and whatever else that turn into gigantic monsters.

The entire show just makes you uncomfortable but in a good way.

That is why I think Sayako is one of the most important characters of the entire piece. I know I got their names mixed up in the last review but Sayako is struggling with the trauma of the terrorist attack, the feeling of being useless and afraid and living in a unsettled existence. Whilst her and Nozomi bring a lot of the humour to the episode and also are a tool to make Asuka care about her other life her trying her hardest to better herself makes walking along this unsettling path easier.

I feel we’re going to be able to see her grow and whilst we see her grow we’ll be able to grow with her.

She isn’t going to be the only person who is traumatised soon though as the cliffhanger has Nozomi in trouble too. The horrible thing being that none of this has anything to do with Asuka, it was a fluke that Sayako was there when the attack happened and Nozomi’s dad is actually a bloody torturer himself so makes his daughter a target.

Which brings me to my opening point.

We know that there are bad guys, the “illegal” Magical Girls being the villains of the show but the show actually does a good job of showing that the world isn’t black and white.

Nozomi’s dad is a good guy but what he does to the terrorist is so wrong that they’ve actually announced him as being dead on the scene of the attack because there is no legal way they could treat him the way they have. He does it knowing that he’s doing it for the right reasons but that doesn’t stop what he is doing being as wrong as it is for anyone.

I had a lot of problems writing about this episode which is why it has taken so long and I’ve fallen behind on them. I really liked the episode because it painted the world in a grey colour that I really enjoyed. It is just so difficult to put into words how I feel after watching it though.

We got to see a little more of the world they are in and I like the “More Terrible War” stuff because to be honest it is. This war might have magical stuff being used in it but this is a war between people from their own planet doing things against their fellow species and whilst there is a huge part of it that is really unrealistic at the same time they’ve brought enough reality into it that it is actually pretty scary to think about.

In the end though it was just another really strong episode.

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