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Follow the adventures of Negi Springfield, a fresh magic academy graduate, as he starts his new job as a teacher at an allgirls high school. Can he balance his teaching duties while pursuing his dream to become a great wizard like his father? Contains Negima! volumes 123!
Dec 26, 2007
147 of 355 chapters read
160 people found this review helpfulPreliminary
The reason the story isn't ranked higher because it takes a few volumes before you get into the good stuff. But either way, this series has a nice story that is constantly evolving into something better.
Man, what a series. All the characters are perfectly designed and never look like anyone else you’ll see in the series, besides the twins. The only complaint that most people have or might have is that the art work is really crammed in there. From page start to page end, everything is pounded into the page making the story quite long to read, but I like it that way.
On average, you got 31 cute girls with unique personalities in the story. There is no way a guy can’t find a fantasy crush or a girl find a character that she can relate to. Then of course you get all the extra characters who make their appearance further along in the series. There are a lot of people to keep track of which can turn some people off, but I have a great memory to remember who is who.
Let me make this perfectly clear, I don’t read this story because it is ecchi. No, I read it because it provides a wonderful, fantasy like adventure set in real world times not some foreign dimension or country which is timeless. The story and all the great characters with a couple of laughs to lighten things up make this a fun story to enjoy.
Any fantasy or magic type fan will get a kick out of this series, ecchi fans who just look for perverted stuff will even stop looking at that stuff and start seeing this is a good story that you’ll want to read over and over again.
Also, this series contains fantasy violence (Not really bloody and no gore), sexual innuendo, partial nudity, and some crude humor are all contained with in the volumes. So if you hate this stuff, look some were else.
Mar 11, 2012
355 of 355 chapters read
Overall Rating: 10
84 people found this review helpful
I suppose I'll get to the sentiments later, and I'll start reviewing. Encompassing a series as big as Negima! in a single review will be challenging (it's the first big series I will review), but I will try my best to do it justice.
When you're talking about a series spanning 355 chapters, you'd only expect a story as excellent as it is detailed. When the said 355-chapter manga is labeled as a harem manga, you'd expect overextended story arcs with different girls. When it's also labeled as a fantasy manga, you'd expect overextended story arcs with different magical girls. Negima!, however, goes beyond what everyone expects of a harem manga (or a fantasy manga, for that matter). It's one of the best points of Negima!, so allow me to expand.
In a span of 355 chapters, Akamatsu has taken us to worlds we can only start to imagine: form an all-girls school, to areas reminiscent of the Hyperbolic Time Chamber in DragonBall, to flying machines, to magical worlds comparable (or even superior, depends on your opinion) to Hogwarts. The author has taken us all for a ride of epic proportions; while most titles stick to one story in a few fixed areas, Negima! takes us to the edges of reality. With gigantic floating library-chasms and the Red Planet all in the mix, Negima! is an imagination-inspired adventure all in itself. All these we explored because of a boy's undying dream of finding his father.
The story circles around Negi Springfield, a young boy who desires to emulate, and eventually locate, the Thousand Master (who is also his father). Simple as it may sound, the sentence above is the driving force of the entire story. Meeting his students, exploring worlds of magic and beyond--all this was due to his wanting of meeting his dad. It's amazing how such a simple thing can take a story to such great bounds.
It's also amazing how Ken Akamatsu manages to compress so much story details in a single, coherent flow of events. We have robots, mages, ghosts, Mars, teenage romance, and immortality all in one story. Having all this in a single story is already a feat in itself; to have extended it to 355 wonderfully-created chapters is something that so few mangakas have managed to do.
What prevented me from giving a 10 was the ending. Long as it is, the ending feels a little hurried. Don't let this stop you from reading, though: it's apparently designed as an open end. I guess it just happened so fast that I didn't feel enough sense of closure for the series. Either that or I was just rooting for one of the girls too much. I'm still hoping dearly for some sort of epilogue to answer all the hanging questions. For now, I will remain contented for what the ending brought me. After all, I expected ending a series this big to be challenging and hard. Akamatsu manages to do it well enough to give me a fleeting bittersweet aftertaste in my head; I'm both happy and sad that the series has ended.
I personally like clean art. Thick outlines, clean expressions and beautiful scenery keep me hooked on a series. Negima! manages to score this as well. Though not perfect, it's certainly enough to be worthy of praise. If you've read his previous work, Love Hina, and liked the art there, then you'll probably like the ones here too. It's nice to see how Akamatsu gives detail to facial expressions concerning blushing and all things related to love (trust me, you'll get it a lot here). His art style is also distinct; you'll spot his work right away. His art brings his characters to life--and seeing that his characters have so much visual detail in them, he certainly doesn't seem to hold back when it comes to making them look good.
Here's the other strong point of Negima!. Most mangakas avoid introducing too much characters in a story, so as not to get the readers cluttered in remembering who's who. Akamatsu, however, kickstarts Negima! by introducing a class of girls. Then he takes us to a magical world, and introduces even more. I haven't even mentioned the teachers in Mahora Academy yet.
Instead of being the weakness of Negima!, it is rather the strength of this series. Akamatsu-sensei manages to introduce characters with distinct personalites that characterize each one and each one alone (well, except for the twins in the said class). If you're going to do a harem, you have to give the girls distinction. If you'll do it with a class, you've got a lot of distinction to do. Akamatsu accomplishes this by two ways: personality and power. He gives each character a distinct habit or trait that is his or hers alone. Above that, he also gives them a unique power (this is a fantasy manga with mages, after all). And might I add that this was done excellently.
After everything that's happened, I find it hard to put the story of Negima! down. It's been an long, entertaining ride through the world of Mahora Academy and beyond, and it's been fun seeing a young boy grow up to become the great, respected mage he wanted to become, just like how much of a great mage his father was known to be. I spent a few minutes each week of these past few years reading Negima!, seeing the story progress bit by bit and seeing how Akamatsu gives life to characters both lovable and respectable. He manages to turn mere students of some girls' school to saviors of two worlds--both the human world and the magical world. Akamatsu also manages to make one heck of a good lead character. Negi looks like a boy (well, he is a young boy after all), but certainly acts like he's on a level well beyond himself. I'll be honest with you people, and say that I didn't feel like I was reading a harem manga at all; rather, it was more like reading a story of self-discovery and self-improvement. It's the story of a young Negi Springfield on a quest to find his beloved dad, and in the process he was finding out the good things he can do for the ones close to him. Likewise, his students find out there's much more to their cute little English teacher, and slowly (although Negi barely realizes this) the teacher himself teaches his students lessons well beyond English--in fact, well beyond school at its entirety. He slowly guides his students in find out who they are, and that they can be so much more than what they think themselves of.
I don't know how may readers managed to reach this part of my review, instead of just going TL;DR. My review is this long because I give Negima! this much praise and thanks as it gives us readers its last chapter. It was nice to see how each student ends up in the future, and it was certainly great to find out what the young mage manages to accomplish in the end. But beyond all awe for the characters, I find myself even more awestruck at how Ken Akamatsu delivers a story of epic proportions and manages to keep it as entertaining as it was when its first chapter was published. Alongside Ichigo 100%, this is one of my first mangas to ever read, and just now surely one of the first big series I managed to finish all the way to the end.
In the end, Mahou Sensei Negima! gives a permanent place for itself in the list of the great mangas of the decade. It's a bittersweet feeling to see it conclude, but all stories do end (even if they are open-ended). To end this review, I quote from the last page of the last chapter:
"True magic results from courage of the heart. Boys and girls, be ambitious. One step can change the world."
Congratulations to Ken Akamatsu for the nine years of success, and a big thank you to him for taking that one step, which in the end gives us a story that spans nine years and several worlds. I can now say that I grew up with Mahou Sensei Negima; even more, I proudly say that I saw it grow to become the great story that I thought it should become back when I read its first chapter. read more