Sep 12, 2011
LEGOF (All reviews)
Another ecchi harem anime? Don't go rolling your eyes just yet as this harem has some class.

There's usually a very thin storyline that's used as an excuse to bring the harem together. In Maburaho's case, that lies within the desire of strengthening the family heritage with a very powerful magician that could only come from the genes of our male lead, Kazuki Shikimori. Accompanied by a decent array of women with similar intentions, the harem unfolds and evolves into a more dramatic love story where Kazuki is fought over time and time again. The characters are very dynamic and you will see the change towards the middle of the season when... ah, never mind. That's a huge spoiler. Anyways, it's a very basic storyline to get the harem together and I didn't go too much into it since there is already a description of the story.

Since this is an ecchi anime you will see a good amount of ecchi moments (kind of a no brainer, actually). However, these ecchi moments aren't ridiculously made and there aren't many of what I like to call "forced ecchi moments" where the anime throws in a very unnecessary panty shot which makes this ecchi harem a more refined piece of work. The ecchi aspect isn't all too distracting but it still should suit your fancy if you happen to like what they show, like the school festival.

The background music was very catchy and very fitting from what I remember, but since it has been quite a while I'll just leave it at that since background music isn't exactly the first thing people look at when deciding anime. The voice actors (Japanese) were very well fitted to the character and I didn't have any problems listening to them. The dub (English voice actors) gave me ear-bleeding moments but I think they did a decent job dubbing. It's just that dubs usually aren't my cup of tea.

The OP is a love-it-or-hate-it OP (I loved it, if you were wondering). Ichiko has a very... unique way of singing so it's up to you whether you want to listen or hit that 1:30 mark. The ED, however, is a beautiful arrangement and will get stuck in your head after you've finished an episode. I myself stuck around to listen to the ED and it's a very calming yet emotional way to end the drama.

Right off the bat you will see there are 3 main heroine to claw each other for Kazuki. There are other females that will join the harem, each satisfying the general standards for harem females. We've got most of the dere types, childhood friend, and the sexually provocative type. Overall, the females hit the mark on the character types but since these characters are dynamic you might see your favorite female change into something you hate. Despite that there's enough of the harem types to suit your harem needs.

So... how about the male lead, Kazuki? In my opinion, he's one of the more acceptable harem leads. He's not incapable of handling the harem nor is he dreadfully dense that he can't sense emotions or drama. Helpless is also one of the furthest things from the list due to his powerful yet limited supply of magic uses. His only problem is that due to his limited supply, he's very hesitant and usually when he uses it you may find yourself smacking the screen at the reason why he used it.

In regards to the supporting characters, they were generally acceptable. I think the supporting characters had a very huge role in the drama and it's very pleasant to see that they're not just tossed away like yesterday's cleaning rag. Again, we have the standard archetypes in harem anime such as the perverted best friend(s), elegant motherly figure, and the mysterious sensei. I applaud Maburaho's use of supporting characters and I believe this is a prime example of how to accurately execute supporting roles into the main story.

Despite the pros, there are still many cons. There were numerous cliches in Maburaho such as "I will always be with you/protect you." At the time I didn't mind it too much, but nowadays there is enough anime that revolve around this theme that it could make you sick. The pacing of the story seemed to drag heavily towards the end. Speaking of the end, Maburaho took a very disappointing one and one of the sorriest excuses to end an anime. Since there wasn't much of a final goal in the anime it was very aggravating to see how flimsy the ending was. If you're willing to get past the bad ending and enjoy everything else, go for it. If you're one of the types that will linger upon endings, don't watch the ending.