Homura style! >:D
It’s 4:00 AM. Time for a random Madoka appreciation post!
That’s Puella Magi Madoka Magica, an anime in which young schoolgirls are recruited and empowered by a cat/rabbit hybrid creature to fight supernatural creatures that feed on despair.
Yes, it’s a fairly standard premise, but the way it’s developed is far from standard. Basically, take some typical ‘magical girl’ genre tropes - a boundlessly-optimistic cast, the power of friendship, ineffectual monsters of the week, a marketably adorable mascot character - and twist them into the most realistic, horrific forms conceivable. Turns out that adding ‘the safety of humanity’ to a typical adolescent’s list of responsibilities is perhaps not the wisest of ideas.
Not that any knowledge of the genre is necessary; the plot moves at a swift pace, and the characters have a surprising amount of depth and growth for a series only 12 20-minute episodes long. Take the above picture - there’s only about 15 minutes between each of those shots, but the character’s development is so drastic that you could more easily believe a whole season had elapsed. And yet it makes perfect sense, and happens to be one of the most heartbreaking episodes of a particularly emotional series.
So, in summary - it’s unique, the plot and characters both make sense and are emotionally engaging, everything about the production is perfectly thematically appropriate, and it’s very very short. Go watch it now.