English: Day Break Illusion
Synonyms: Gen'ei wo Kakeru Taiyou, Il Sole Penetra le Illusioni, The Sun Penetrates the Illusions
Status: Finished Airing
Aired: Jul 6, 2013 to Sep 28, 2013
24 min. per episode
R - 17+ (violence & profanity)
L represents licensing company
Score: 6.601 (scored by 9032 users)
1 indicates a weighted score
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SynopsisSince ancient times long past, this world has been ruled by two tarot cards.
Diablos Tarot—The tarot of the devil that feasts on the souls of living humans and uses that nourishment to bring countless pain and suffering.
Elemental Tarot—The tarot that draws its energy from the power of nature in order to oppose the Diablos Tarot.
Girls chosen from 22 different bloodlines become the wielders of the Elemental Tarot, plunging themselves into this secret battle. To maintain the balance of this world, while carrying unbearable guilt...
Are they executioners? Or saviors? This is the story of the long, long battle fought by girls who cannot escape the fate they bear.
Related AnimeAdaptation: Genei wo Kakeru Taiyou
Prequel: Genei wo Kakeru Taiyou: Fumikome nai Kokoro
Characters & Voice Actors
Alright, let's face it. After the ever famous and successful "Mahou Shoujo Madoka Magica," a want and increase in demand for dark magical girl shows have been prevalent in the anime community. Now, I'm not going to be comparing this show to Madoka 24/7, because trust me, this show is bad on it's own, but I will be using Madoka as a basis for what a dark magical girl show should try to succeed, and what it shouldn't.
Day Break Illusion is, absolutely, what it shouldn't.
If the promotional art and the opening wasn't a dead giveaway, it should be well-known that this show is going to be pretty dark. And well, it definitely is. The story pretty much revolves on young tarot card users who fight against "Daemonia" - demons created when humans contract with them and eventually succumb into despair after the daemonia pretty much takes over their mind. The Daemonia causes what appears to be natural disasters around it, and its up to the tarot card girls to fight against it.
You know, I wouldn't mind the story. I wouldn't mind it even if it was almost an exact replica of what Madoka did. Here's the thing though -- the story is insanely try-hard. By try-hard, I mean it does so, SO much to try to remind you of how dark it is, of how grim and bloody things get. Let's take how we're flashed back with Akari's dead cousins' bloody corpse at least 5 times throughout the show. Or how when a painter girl becomes jealous that another painter criticized her, she made sure that both her and the boy that the critic liked were KILLED. Or turning the twelve (yes, twelve) year old girl into a wolf demon. Yes, a wolf demon.
I wouldn't mind these story elements either that much if they were, gee, I dunno, foreshadowed? The sudden and grimdark death of Akari's cousin happens within 10 minutes of the first episode. 10 minutes. You hardly know anything about the cousin or why she dies. A revelation that occurs later on that almost guarantees death of major characters just.. happens. Why? To make the plot get gritter and darker. Nothing is ever at least foreshadowed a little bit, not even once. There were no hints whatsoever that a tarot card user could combine with a Daemonia and create some weird demon, nothing.
Basically, the show does whatever it can and goes out of its way to remind you of how dark and edgy and grim it is. You know, I have people that complain about Madoka being dark and edgy, but at least Madoka foreshadowed it. Maybe it had issues with shock value, but just so you know, shock value isn't just tricking the audience. Shock value can be randomly killing off a character in a gorey way in the first episode. Shock value can be deciding at the end of an episode to change one of the characters into a demon wolf. It doesn't matter if the show is already proclaimed as dark, if it happens without foreshadowing, it's shock value.
Now you're probably wondering, well, do the characters at least save the show? Oh, I wish. I really, really wish. Hopeful protagonist, cold girl with dark past, sisterly lesbian, and energetic one. That's really what they all are, and honestly.. they're not that good. Namely our protagonist, Akari. I get it -- I get that she's only twelve years old and couldn't kill things that easily. But you know what? When I see another character go up and kill someone she knew personally and loved to free him out of his misery, I'm going to be annoyed at her actions.
The characters range from cliche to boring to downright DISGUSTING. The main villain, who we know almost nothing about, decides late in the series that he wants to mate (he literally says mate) with Akari. Akari is twelve. Twelve years old. He basically does this sick shit in order to completely destroy her mind and heart so she doesnt care about silly things like consent anymore and, I quote, "becomes a mother."
Playing the rape/sexual card in a story is NEVER a good sign, unless it's absolutely relevant to the plot or was foreshadowed/absolutely needed. But you know what? These girls are twelve/thirteen. We have one girl walk around evil and demonic with her tits literally bouncing out of her chest. We have another one being nearly forced to give into consent with pretty much a demon. Do you see the issue here? I hope so, because none of this is mature, or deep, or good. It's honestly really sick and unnecessary.
In terms of the art.. it's... ehh... I mean, the animation honestly is pretty good. The fight scenes, attacks, all of that look pretty nice. But the show is very obviously lolicon-ish. The girl, all of them, look so stick thin and skinny and tiny that when these terrible things happen to them, it feels so out of place and awkward. It feels honestly awkward seeing a scrawny 12 year old girls' eyes turn into tiny dots and scream at the top of her lungs. It looks awkward, and the artstyle makes it feel awkward too. It really feels like it's trying hard to appeal to the lolicons with its artstyle.
Not only that, but the artstyle and character designs in general aren't all that good. The eyes are all really huge, they're usually misplaced too or sliding off the characters face. The bodies in general look really unproportional and just weird, and the hair seems really choppy and cheaply made. Not really an appealing design, at least for me.
If one thing can be said good about Day Break Illusion, it's the soundtrack. I have to admit, aside from Akari's seiyuu, the voices are pretty good and solid. Not to mention the OP and ED themes are pretty great and catchy too. The OST isn't honestly all that stand out, but I can definitely say that the sound is a really concrete part about the show.
And here's where I talk about dark magical girl shows in general. You can skip the next three paragraphs if you don't wanna hear it, I just feel it's kind of needed.
Look, what I believe made Madoka successful in it's darkness wasn't that a girl got her head chopped off or another had to watch her friends die again and again. That's not where I saw success. I saw success in how the show dealt with the psychological breakdown of the things that happened to these characters, and even how their issues could be applied to real life. I feel, personally, that it did an excellent job with showing many different character archetypes in these situations and pretty much breaking them down, showing the affects that it has on them. But that's for another day.
I feel like studios seem to think that if they just add in some death and gore, that it'll be a success. But that's not how it works. It really isn't. I hate to break it to you, but just showing characters die doesn't guarantee success! It really, really doesn't. A solid story, solid characters, good foreshadowing and writing, and a good breakdown of these things are what make it so great. I don't think the show being open about its dark nature is what makes it unpopular either. There are plenty of shows that were shown to be dark from the very beginning that were successful. (Psycho-Pass, Attack on Titan) I'm not calling these objectively good, but they were overall well-received. Essentially, the fault for Day Break Illusion of not being a big hit despite having cute girls in grim situations isn't really because it was already dark from the beginning, but it just does a very bad job at doing what it tries to do, which is, again, be dark.
I guess I enjoy this anime, I mean, it doesn't bore me or put me to sleep like other shows, but the enjoyment is really just mediocre for me. It's enjoyable to watch weekly I guess, but not something that I can say I actually "like" watching, you know? I guess it can be fun for people who like watching anorexic lolis kill things and get killed though.
Overall, Day Break Illusion is a prime example, in my opinion, of how people SHOULDN'T be trying to make dark magical girl shows. Go ahead, make more! It's what people want! But making them so grimdark, adding in things like wanting a 12 year old to give birth to pretty much a demon child, killing off side characters like there's no tomorrow -- that's not what we want. A good story, a solid one with good character that happens to have a darker or more serious twist on the genre, is what would be good, really. But this? Not this, please no this.
Magical girls are about cute girls doing cute magical things, not awkward lolis being slaughtered in blood. read more
At first, I was skeptical about this anime. It received mixed ratings. Some were 9, while others were 4. The ones who rated this anime to be low were mostly those that kept comparing it to Mahou Shoujo Madoka Magica. Critique the show, not compare! It's not a perfect anime, but it doesn't mean it cannot be enjoyable.
Story: The first episode took me by surprise,with me thinking that it escalated pretty quickly with very little background to the story. It made me prepare myself for the upcoming episodes, as there were more grim. The tarot cards were a cool component of this anime; I just wished that they described them in more detail, especially with the cards that the 4 girls have. They don't really explain the organization that they work for either.. The battle scenes were nice, they show struggle through pain and blood. Towards the end, I felt like the story sidetracked from there.
Art: The physical appearance of the girls bothered me at first. They're skinny as twigs and some have pretty big breasts for their age. They magically grow long, bushy hair and go from kawaii-eyes to serious, bad-ass eyes. All of the older people look scary to me. The battle scene backgrounds are plain, but at least the battle moves were pretty cool and somewhat unique. The daemonias look creepy and gross, and some of them, I was not sure why they look like that, based on why they suffered.
Sound: The opening and ending are nice. You hear a lot of screaming in this anime, mostly screams of fear or battle cries. They set the mood pretty well as a potential daemonia appears with ominous music.
Character: I feel the category for this anime was the reason why the viewers rated it low. The fortune tellers that Akari knew seemed somewhat irrelevant; the transvestite and big-breasted lady didn't have to exist. I thought the main antagonist was the sidekick, because he was following orders from someone else. What was the point of this!? When he reveals his intentions at the every end, I thought it was a bit silly. The cat and raven are useless talking messengers. Luna annoyed me the most, being overly attached to Akari. The past between her and her sister was cloudy. Basically, most of the characters had cloudy backgrounds; besides Ginka and Seira. I feel like some didn't fulfill their roles either.
Enjoyment: Although it may seem like I'm contradicting myself while negatively criticizing this anime and giving it a high score, I still like it. It could have been something better, but it just lacked things like depth. Despite missing some important components, I still enjoyed it to the point where I wanted to keep watching the next episode. I came to like most characters, enjoyed the battle scenes, and feel for the girls, as they experienced hardships together.
Give the first few episodes a try and see what you think. read more
Genei wo Kakeru Taiyou has a very similar atmosphere. Both have magical girls fighting something like a monster.
Both darker Mahou Shoujo animes with deep storylines
Both are not your average magical girl show, as they portray the dark side of that it really means to be a 'hero of justice'. Darkness exists because happiness exists.
Both series are about girls who have magical powers, that is used to defeat monster like beings that were originally humans
In both series, there is the concept of magical girls doing battles against the supernatural. The girls themselves have abilities that allows them to fight against their foes using sources of energy.
Both series has a darker atmosphere than the traditional 'magical girl' theme series. There's that familiar feeling of sorrow and despair surrounding the characters. Meanwhile, they also incorporate some cute moments but most times are clouded by the darker tones.
There's also some sort of destiny to be fulfilled and the girls tries their best to accomplish it despite the odds & consequences.
Both are unusual mahou shoujo anime where despairing people are turned into surreal monsters. A group of very cute girls have to fight these monsters while they suffer tragedies.
One episode of Genei Taiyou and two episodes of Madoka (and of course thousands of spoiler posts on Tumblr) has already led me to believe that the atmospheres of both are very similar. They both start out as a cutesy show and then it just turns super dark.
I don't know the characters too well yet, but they seem very similar personality-wise.
Similar dark themes of a magical girl genre.
Both are a story about girls with magical powers
both have a deep plot
both are entertaining and exciting
Both get really gritty and throw you off because of it
Both have dynamic characters with their own reasons behind their actions and personalities.
Both use the concept of mahou shoujo in a dark setting. Happy girls born with a power and a "destiny" to protect the world are because of this suddenly forced into a life filled with sadness and despair.
A dark and refreshing twist to a cliche setting, while keeping a lot of the colorful and "cute" theme that comes with being a mahou shoujuo, creating an interesting contrast with the dull and gory world that is painted around them.
Same feeling, and the girls all seem to be fighting for something/someone.
Both have magical girls, magic, transforming and battling monsters, but at the same time deals with dark themes. Main girls awaken their powers.
Deceptively cute at first but shows how dark it can be. The art in Genei seems to take the cuteness farther than Madoka though since it doesn't have dark backgrounds and the characters are very moe. However, Genei also shows in the first episode that it even has some horror elements while Madoka waits longer.
they both have magical girls who fight monsters in a similar dark atmosphere
You might think that it is "cute girls saving the world, with happiness," but it is the polar opposite of it. Fear, despair, sorrow, and emotions, all in a much more darker tone then other magical girls nowadays. In the story, the main characters are battling the humans who have "negative emotions" with a monster possess inside of them. The people who have lost hope, have transform into a horrible monster, which makes the main characters having a bad feeling when the battle is finished.
There is not much of a difference, but Madoka Magica signs a "contract" to fight off these "witches." Day Break Illusion use cards to transform and fight off monsters.
Both from the magical girl genre
Both are genre breaking
The monsters from the two animes are similar
Both are not your average magical girl show, as they portray the dark side of that it really means to be a 'hero of justice'. Darkness exists because happiness exists.
A girl becomes a magical girl. It may seem cutesy on the outside but gets dark!!! The powers she gets comes with a price.
While these two series may seem like the typical magical girl series at first, they have some differences in terms of presentation. For instance, both series takes a more serious approach in terms of dealing with enemies. Then, there are the main characters who each get their spotlights through development mainly in terms of their roles in the story. Some of these characters plays roles involving saving others while some deals with how to get by their own problems.
These problems sometimes involves emotions and has a more serious approach to the magical girl genre. Also more noticeable is the OST for both series.
Opening Theme"träumerei" by LiSA
Ending Theme"-Mirage-" by Natsumi Okamoto (岡本菜摘)
Which fansubbers do you like the best? Click + to approve of their subs for this show. Click - if you don't think they did such a great job.
AnimeYO! [AnimeYO!] (Brazilian Portuguese)
HayaiSUB [Hayaisubs] (Brazilian Portuguese)
Related ClubsAnisong Grand Prix Anisong Singers, Day Break Illusion fan-club, Daisuki Appreciation Club, Touyama Nao Fanclub, Kitamura Eri Fanclub, Tanezaki Atsumi [Kiritani Hana] Fan Group, Hayami Saori Fanclub, Mahou Shoujo Appreciation, Original Anime, The Garbage Connoisseurs, Alpaca Fever, Mature anime & manga for mature people
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