Gushing Over Magical Girls – Episode 1

By: Vrai Kaiser January 3, 20240 Comments
Utena drooling excitedly

Content Warning: heavy fanservice, sexualization of minors, nudity, sexual assault

What’s it about? Hiiragi Utena is a shy nobody who loves magical girls, especially local heroes Tres Magia. Her chance to get closer to them comes less than ideally though, when villainous mascot Venalita blackmails her into joining up with the bad guys. Why her? As it turns out, Utena is something of a closet sadist.

Last year, Discotek announced the long-anticipated US release of Re: Cutie Honey, the rare entry in the famous(ly horny) magical girl franchise that reimagined the titular heroine as an adult office worker rather than a high school student. I rejoiced, at last able to enjoy the pretty gay, very thirsty magical girl shenanigans without having to feel like a creep. It’s possible this series is some kind of karmic payback.

There is something to the concept of taking the sadistic queer-coded villain, one of the oldest archetypes in anime, and reclaiming them in a kink-positive narrative. There’s something to a story that’s about awakening to kinky desires. There’s eternal room in my heart for Team Rocket-esque villains who are adorably terrible at their jobs. If Gushing About Magical Girls were about adults, I might recommend it as brainless but kind of endearing nonsense with a lovely bright color palette.

But it’s not. Even above and beyond the norms of an average anime, it’s not.

Utena in her costume with star nipple pasties
Look, it’s not that 14 isn’t absolutely the age where you’re starting to realize you maybe have unexpected kinks.
It’s that I, an adult, do not want to be horny AT the kid figuring out her shit

Most people who’ve been anime and manga fans looking for some degree of horny content, or who are willing to sit through a degree of fanservice for an otherwise engaging story, have probably engaged in what I like to call the “yup, totally” rule: the box emphasizes that all participants in any sexual activities are 18 or above, and for your own mental safety you go, “yup, totally.”

It’s something that inevitably crops up, given that high school is such a popular setting for anime, manga, and so on. It’s an instinct that encompasses not just overt eroge or campy fanservice-fests like Kakegurui but gentle coming-of-age stories like Twilight Out of Focus. And you can argue it’s part of a much larger conversation about visual sleight of hand fetishizing youth, not unlike the United States’ love of casting ripped 30-year-olds to play high schoolers. It’s a way, way bigger issue than this little article has space for. But the thing is, that the “yup, totally” rule doesn’t even apply to Gushing Over Magical Girls. These are, loudly and explicitly, middle school girls. 12- to 14-year-olds.

Y’all, the transformation sequences have nipples. I want to die.

Popuko and Pipimi in the corner of a gym changing room scene
No, y’know, it feels right that the chaos girlfriends are here to mock my pain

It’s a show unquestionably formulated as kink from the ground up, and the animators seem to have gone above and beyond in making the adaptation even hornier and more explicit than the original webcomic. There’s a plant tentacle scene where the captured Tres Magia are drawn with labia visible through their suits. Long shots of legs being forced apart and nipples being twisted. The panty shots are practically quaint at a certain point.

There are so many other titles adjacent to the subjects of “magical warrior” and “horny” that I could recommend for you. The above-mentioned Re: Cutie Honey. The eternally underrated Fairy Ranmaru. The tokusatsu enemies-to-lovers yuri Superwomen in Love. The ever-delightful Oglaf. Maybe there’s someone out there writing a grown-up kinky magical girl series I don’t know about yet. But it’s not this.

And when they come and get me for that government watchlist, just know that I did this for y’all.  

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