Magical Girls have for decades been a staple of anime and manga. They’ve gone from witches who use their powers to play pranks, to girls who embody the desire to become adults, to powerful warriors and more.
I’m personally quite a fan of magical girls and all that they represent (dreams, potential, transformation, etc.), so I’d like to go over my list of Top 10 Magical Girls.
10) Mami Tomoe, Madoka Magica
Madoka’s mentor at the beginning of Madoka Magica, Mami makes an immediate impression with her flintlock weaponry and calm and confident demeanor. No one who has watched Madoka Magica can ever forget mami.
9) Umi Ryuuzaki, Magic Knight Rayearth
All three of the Magic Knights are great characters in their own right, but Umi’s cool yet passionate demeanor makes quite the impression. Her personal magical robot, the Mashin Ceres, is also incredible.
8) Himari Takakura (Princess of the Crystal), Mawaru Penguindrum
With a shout of “SURVIVAL STRATEGY” and a cover of a classic J-Rock song, the Princess of the Crystal makes things more surreal and contemplative than what you’d expect out of a show that features adorable penguins so prominently.
7) Sucy Manbavaran, Little Witch Academia
Studio Trigger’s (Kill la Kill, Ninja Slayer from Animation) entry in the 2013 Anime Mirai project was full of fun and vibrant characters, but the potion-obsessed Sucy stands at the top. Her Cheshire Cat-esque smile belies her desire to experiment.
6) Ami Mizuno (Sailor Mercury), Sailor Moon
There are seemingly tons of Sailor Guardians to choose from, but Sailor Mercury’s smarts, love of literature, and candid hamburger photograph leave an unforgettable impression. “Douse yourself in water and repent!”
5) Makoto Kenzaki (Cure Sword), DokiDoki! Precure
Many magical girls transform from regular girls, but the Blade of Courage” was originally a magical girl who disguises herself as a human being. Makoto’s “pop idol by day, warrior by night” dual life is one of the most interesting parts of an already strong series.
4) Comet, Cosmic Baton Girl Princess Comet
Comet has taken many forms over the years, including two live-action actors and a manga, but the 2001 anime features this magical girl at her best. An alien princess from Planet Harmonica, her love for the simple things on Earth is genuine.
3) Sakura Kinomoto, Cardcaptor Sakura
Coming from one of the best magical girl series there is, Sakura’s enthusiasm and never-give-up attitude (unless it involves ghosts) allow her to forge friendships with everyone she meets. Her path from regular girl to Clow Card master is a sight to behold.
2) Aiko Senoo, Ojamajo Doremi
The tomboy of the group, what makes her really stand out is her combination of confidence and honest consideration for others. She supports her family and her friends, but is willing to tell it like it is if they’re acting like idiots (which they often are).
1) Erika Kurumi (Cure Marine), Heartcatch Precure!
A whirling dynamo of boundless energy, eccentricity, love of fashion, and passion for her friends, the boisterous Cure Marine frequently steals the show in an already astoundingly good anime series. She’s the perfect complement to her teammate and friend Cure Blossom, as both of them defy the standard expectations of their archetypes, helping each other to grow and mature along the way.
So do you agree with this list of great magical girls, or is there anyone I overlooked? Do you feel like the list is too biased towards “blue” characters? Feel free to discuss in the comments below!
And if you’re looking for an event in the New York City area where you can meet and talk with your fellow fans of Japanese popular culture, check out Waku Waku +NYC!