Weirdest. Opening. Ever. And it was completely unrelated to the overarching story…
But it does hint to more of the Tatsuya X Saegusa ship that a lot of fans lean towards.
The episode opens with Tatsuya and Saegusa talking about the Thesis competition and Tatsuya’s help with Rin Ichihara’s project. It ends with a somewhat flustered Saegusa responding to Tatsuya’s super blunt advances… if they can be called advances.
Tatsuya is doing tons of investigation on the side regarding hackers searching for confidential magic documents. Mahouka has a tendency to drop a bunch of introductory bits that don’t seem to make sense as they are interspersed through general high school every day life but somehow, if you remember all these details, they’ll end up being tied together in one inciting incident to throw us into the plot and action build-up of the arc. I’ve noticed that the beginnings of each big arc jump around to multiple perspective and we aren’t given one straight narrative of the story until Tatsuya gets a solid grasp of the situation in which, the perspective shifts back to the main characters and unfolds according to him.
I’m getting just a little bit bored with how Tatsuya tries to fit into the everyday high school life when he CLEARLY isn’t cut out for ordinary. Kanon and Isori’s relationship is sort of introduced and made open right in this episode because they become somewhat relevant to the Yokohama arc in general. On the side, it seems like someone is targeting Tatsuya and perhaps the Shiba siblings both.
I wish Mahouka would story-tell in such a way that lets us get inside the characters heads, or at least, the main characters’ minds. Most of the time, Mahouka is presented to viewers from a very distant and disconnected third person perspective which makes it difficult to pick up certain details that, to the producers and light-novel readers, would be very obvious, but to someone who’s never encountered the story before in any way, shape or form, would be lost. Even many of the extremely side supporting characters (mostly the government ones) are only usually recognizable by face and not by name.
I did enjoy the Leo X Erika battle with the shady stalker dude, Jiro Marshall. Seriously, they need to become a canon couple. They’d have fantastically hyper and athletically-endowed kids LOL Apparently Marshall is in charge of making sure magic from the schools doesn’t end up leaked out. If this encounter has taught us anything, it’s that the magic high kids are never really safe from all the crazy power struggles amongst magicians on an international level. There is actually SO MUCH surveillance going on because each nation is trying to out-magic the other. We just don’t see enough of the overarching dark political stuff because of how the story tries to move within a high school setting but it’s at moments like the end of episode 20 that we should remind ourselves there WAS a huge magic war between nations before this all began (Refer to Prologue in episode 1). Mahouka is a really interesting story and intriguing characters. It works brilliantly in its magic-tech system and the light novels flush out the world and its characters really well. The anime has just not been executed well and so we end up getting clunky storytelling and lagging pace at times, offset by sudden bouts of action and sporadic character reveals.
I’m sure episode 21 will try and pick up a bunch of the scattered tidbits that episode 20 gave us and make sense of them. Well, Tatsuya will make sense of them and then somehow present it to the audience.
What are you pondering today?