Nov 10, 2017
LegendAqua (All reviews)
The Yuuki Yuuna wa Yuusha de Aru series is probably one of the only "dark magical girl" animes since Puella Madoka Magi Magica to stand on it's own whilst still having it's dark underlining themes as a result and not be made a ripoff of, see Genei wo Kakeru Taiyou for the latter.

Seeing Yuuki Yuuna wa Yuusha de Aru: Washio Sumi no Shou which is a prequel already got LA under some skepticism as to how this prequel mini series was going to pan out. From this even being a prequel it was already going to get dealt with the "inevitability" and "knowing what's gonna happen anyways" elements of it. LA however did see more into this prequel of Yuuki Yuna focusing on Tog- Sumi Washio voiced by Suzuki Mimori, Sonoko Nogi voiced by Kana Hanazawa and Gin Minowa voiced by Yumiri Hanamori and them fighting the Vertexes and protecting Shinju-sama and her hometown of Shikoku.

The characters in this prequel has technically one new character that being Gin Minowa and we do see LOTS of development from her, what with her being the genki hot-blooded character of the trio yet a caring member of her family and pretty much anyone around her at the same time and Gin utter SHINES in this prequel. Sonoko Nogi is the ojou archetype but is also the ace and slightly aloof and times being the maniac to Sumi's minder. Sumi Washio is the typical strict yet playfully dere character and keeps both Sonoko and Gin in line, we also for the most part sees the majority of the anime in her perspective (it is her "chapter" and all). Having watched the original series we can see how at the very least Sumi and Sonoko translates into how they will become later on.

Ok, you probably want to know why LA sees more into this prequel than just being "inevitable because it's a prequel" and by all means this statement is true to a fact but it's what lies in it being a prequel that makes it interesting. We get to see the Shinju-sama system before it all and how it affects our trio, character development from the trio also helps us get used to these characters from things outside of the magical girl element and just looking at their daily lives and that brings in the emotional side of things when things get really sour, yes it's inevitable but damn does this prequel know how to pull on your heart strings extremely quickly yet make it AWESOME at the same time. LA thinks LA said this time and again but it's the "journey not the destination" statement that really makes this prequel something to look at.

The animation by Studio Gokumi is once again in top notch even for a prequel like this, from the moe-esque character designs blended in with the awesome background visuals and the damn good fighting choreography and battle scenes in general were amazing to watch, yes some CGI was used, mainly with the Vertexes but LA thinks that is the point of making them alien/monster-like so the CGI kinda makes sense all things considered. LA will give props to Studio Gokumi for both the character designs and background visuals as it was probably it's strongest element in terms of animation.

The voice acting was superb to say the least, from Suzuko Mimori, Kana Hanazawa and Yumiri Hanamori, but also special mention to Rina Satou as Aki (their homeroom teacher and mentor). LA will probably give Yumiri Hanamori the best voice actor for this anime if only because of her hot-bloodedness and some awesome battle cries she does (seriously Yumiri has been playing against the type this year and it showing). LA thought that LA would get annoyed with Kana Hanazawa's genki moe scthick but more or less because of the plot, she was more refreshing than annoying this time round and finally Suzuko Mimori did an overall decent job in voicing Sumi.

This prequel made LA really like their characters and their quirks in a short amount of time and all yet also seeing the fate handed to them because of it being a prequel. Yet there is just something about this prequel that even though it being a prequel has it's major problems, what it had as a whole was a whirlwind of emotional experience by looking at our magical girl trio in which LA can give this prequel grace and effectively giving us world building we already knew but giving in much greater detail (and in 6 episodes no less) of Sumi Washio's story and by extension how it affected the original series as well.

Yuuki Yuuna wa Yuusha de Aru: Washio Sumi no Shou is a nice prequel and companion piece to the original series, LA just hopes that the sequel to Yuuki Yuuna wa Yuusha de Aru, Yuuki Yuuna wa Yuusha de Aru: Yuusha no Shou doesn't falter on it's quality because it's a sequel and hopefully succeeds it's original series and learn from it's mistakes and looking at Washio Sumi no Shou, LA thinks this is going in the right direction but we'll see once the sequel is released...