The second episode of Mahou Tsukai No Yome: Hoshi Matsu Hito (The Ancient Magus’ Bride: Those Awaiting A Star) has aired, and its not a day after I’ve learned that the series will be getting a full anime adaptation in the Fall Season, so I’m in a pretty good mood. Since I’ve covered the first episode (review here), we’ll be picking up where that left off and replacing the premise and setting with an overview of the episode itself.
It picks up where the last episode left off, with Chise meeting the magician of the forest, Riichi Miura, who can see spirits and things others couldn’t like her. The library turns out to be a safe place of sorts where none of the wicked creatures could enter and he welcomes her with open arms since its been a long time since anyone has come by, gifting her a library card.
There’s only three rules that she has to obey. She must have her card to enter. She can only take one book at a time. And she must never leave the door open. As long as she obeys those rules, she’s free to come and go as she pleases.
This is important considering that her home life is crap due to the circumstances of her ability. The people who took her in are decidedly human in that they were largely unprepared to raise someone like her, despite their initial goodwill. Because they can’t understand her woes, it causes even more stress for the mother watching over her, the father who isn’t around because he’s working or on the phone, and the children who have to listen to them fighting and blames her for it. Between that and the fact that more menacing spirits keep harassing her, the library becomes a sort of place where she can relax and have some measure of peace in her life.
This is, however, is undermined somewhat by the dark hints spread throughout the episode that not all is well despite this. And by the end… well… let’s just say that things get really dark by the end. I’d show you, but I think I’ll let you see for yourself.
Young Chise once again takes the spotlight as the main character. She believes she has found a reprieve in finding the library and we can even see over the course of the episode how much it all means to her. The fear and exhaustion-induced bags under her eyes vanish when she visits the library everyday. Peaceful, uplifting music plays over still shots of her just reading and accompanying Riichi over the course of several minutes.
However, being a prequel series, we all know that something has to go wrong. And it does. Horribly. I won’t say what happens, but let me mention that between the events of this episode and what happened to her mother, I just want to hug her and tell her it’ll be all right.
Riichi Miura is also a central character. He appears to be a well-meaning if somewhat clumsy librarian who only has her best intentions at heart. But at certain points he has erratic moments that show all is not well, leading to him trying to keep Chise from entering for her own good. It… doesn’t quite pan out for him exactly.
Animation & Sound
Again, the animation and music are beautiful. I mean, the scene where the stars began to envelop the room (pictured above) was breathtaking, and then it became heart-wrenching as everything was cast in a dull-grey tone to show the ill-fate that befalls the once majestic library by the end of the episode.
It’s a good OVA that picks up where the first left off and leads into the upcoming third part that will be out just before the anime airs. The art remains breathtaking and the emotion that the story invokes really touches you. And the characters are decidedly human, even the minor ones. So, yeah, go watch it.