Why hello there, folks, I feel like it’s been a while since my last translation. Not so much since my last MahoIku post however but let’s not get bothered by that, alright? Anyway, in case you always wanted to know how the character designing process for the MahoIku anime went, check this out. And if you don’t… check it out regardless!
This is a translation of comments on the (anime) designs of the 16 magical girls from the Mahou Shoujo Ikusei Keikaku TV anime made in the Mahou Shoujo Ikusei Keikaku Official Fanbook for the TV anime. Luckily, I own a copy of it. Each character has two comments dedicated to them, one each by maruino, who is the character designer for the original light novel, and Yukiko Aikei, who was tasked as the anime’s character designer with transporting these charming magical girls to the world of TV anime.
As always, let’s keep in mind that my translations are amateurish at best so take everything with a grain of salt. This post also contains spoilers for the MahoIku anime/first volume of the light novel so you have been warned.
Snow White/Koyuki Himekawa:
maruino: She got the most magical girl-like design of all characters. Asari Endou-sensei directed me to give her a white uniform, and I went beyond that request with the sailor uniform, adding magical girl-esque details to it.
Yukiko Aikei: Snow White is a character where the entire body is meticulously constructed in terms of design and the first thing I became aware of was her overall statue. maruino’s art emphasizes legs/feet in width and size in a particular manner so I left that silhouette intact.
maruino: Asari Endou-sensei’s first instruction was to make her a black ninja girl whose coloring serves as a contrast to Snow White’s white. However, as to not stress that imagery too much, I made her expose a lot of skin and added white pompons to her design.
Yukiko Aikei: If Snow White’s design is that of a small statue, then Ripple was made to have a more adult look to her appearance. There was also the possibility that what’s beyond her scarf would be drawn, so the designing process was coordinated with maruino-san.
La Pucelle/Souta Kishibe:
maruino: To best express that the general feeling of Souta-kun’s desires would be reflected in his avatar, I designed La Pucelle so an overall mature impression would be left. She is the only character who has eye shadows added to her.
Yukiko Aikei: La Pucelle is supposed to convey the impression of an admirable older sister and the design absolutely reflected that part. Characteristically for her are her horns and tail as well as the armor that prioritizes appearance over having a properly functional construction.
Top Speed/Tsubame Murota:
maruino: Asari Endou-sensei’s instruction was to make her a blond, blue-eyed witch wearing a mantle but her design as it was didn’t really differ much from your average witch. I then added a birth protection charm for safe childgiving to her arm as a form of distinguishment.
Yukiko Aikei: In terms of the overall features, her design was largely left intact, however, as for the sake of the animation process, the ‘Not Interested In What You Have To Say’ writing on her mantle was ommitted. In the anime, she would only wear it when she got really serious (laughs).
maruino: Asari Endou-sensei’s instruction was to create a princess. Within the source material, she was depicted as ill-tempered so I settled for making her small while giving her a haughty vibe. Being of big statue and also huge arrogance just wouldn’t have been cute at all.
Yukiko Aikei: The huge hair ornaments at both sides of her head sure are cute. As they were, the degree of details on her laces wouldn’t be so hard on the animation process so she turned out to be a character who can be drawn rather comfortably.
Swim Swim/Ayana Sakanagi:
maruino: The instruction that came from Asari Endou-sensei was ‘a white school swimsuit’. I had no idea that she would wind up being the last boss so I designed her just going by my preferences and aimed for making a rather cute design.
Yukiko Aikei: With about this degree of change in regards to her swimming goggles, I think we achieved a design that was relatively faithful to the original. Director Hashimoto expressed that he wanted to increase her chest size so I really gave it my all there. (laughs)
maruino: Asari Endou-sensei instructed me to create twin angels and that’s what I kept in mind during the designing process. Being very limited in their differences, what distinguishes the two of them are the sides of their hairy wings and of the ribbons attached to their legs.
Yukiko Aikei: The fact that the angel’s halos are round flourescent lamps is cute, isn’t it? (laughs) Since their personalities are so rotten, I kept in mind to make their designs cute so you wouldn’t come to hate these characters.
maruino: The image I had in mind was to attribute one complimentary wing to each of the two of them but with that, wouldn’t they be unable to fly then? Well, accomplishing the impossible is what makes them magical girls all the more then is what I figured.
Yukiko Aikei: How we would come to handle depicting details of hands and feet for Minael and Yunael gave us quite the headache. At the end of the day, we came to the conclusion that realistically depicting fingers would rob them off their cuteness so we settled for an SD look instead.
maruino: Asari Endou-sensei’s instruction was to make her look like a fragile pupper. When the scarf came together with the gloves and hood, I couldn’t help but feel that that was an incredibly cute design so I used that as a reference.
Yukiko Aikei: As for the anime adaptation, I wondered if it wouldn’t be better to give her paws more of a three-dimensional look. Because of her name, sometimes it wouldn’t be quite obvious whether she’s a cat or a dog and at first, her paws were conceptualized as those of a cat. (laughs)
maruino: Since she is the first to pass away, my modus operandi was to make her design like a fluffball. (laughs) Also, changing hair color midway was just my kind of thing back then.
Yukiko Aikei: With Nemurin, figuring out how I would handle her build was quite troublesome so only after it had been determined how many patterns there were, I settled for it. Afterwards, there weren’t really any major deviations from the base concept. Drawing the clouds sure was fun.
Calamity Mary/Naoko Yamamoto:
maruino: Asari Endou-sensei’s instruction was to create a gunman from a Western, so as I was working on the design, I gave her a leopard print to emphasize her ferocity. With that said, in terms of a magical girl-esque beauty, that’s really quite meagre. (laughs)
Yukiko Aikei: As the sole sexy character, I put emphasis on the size of her chest and hips. As for the sake of an easier animation process, the scattered fringes at her sleeves were simplified and her gun holster’s leg was switched.
Magicaloid 44/Makoto Andou:
maruino: She turned out to be rather grade school girlish, a small statue and cute robot look were how I approached her in my very own way.
Yukiko Aikei: In a previous, unrelated work, ‘Accel World’, I created a character with a similar vibe so when I was working on the model sheets, I used that character as a reference for drawing the facial expressions. (laughs)
Sister Nana/Nana Habutae:
maruino: I received an instruction from Asari Endou-sensei, saying ‘Even though she is a nun, I want you to insert a slit in her skirt as to express a sense of immorality’ so I obediently did as I was told. Since she is a clergy, I used crosses for her pupils.
Yukiko Aikei: The belts around her chest also really imply that sense of immorality. With motion during an anime, I figured that the underwear might also be seen through the slit and I humbly accepted this endeavor of a designing process.
Weiss Winterprison/Shizuku Ashuu:
maruino: Asari Endou-sensei’s instruction was to give her a scarf and lots of belts. His work gave of such a manly impression of her that I gave her short hair and a stylish outward appearance.
Yukiko Aikei: From the perspective of creating animation, her many belts and buttons were quite troublesome, so I increased the size of these parts a bit to lessen the burden. As for what’s beneath the coat, I also inquired maruino-san and drew accordingly.
Cranberry, Musician of the Forest:
maruino: Going by Asari Endou-sensei’s instruction to create an elf musician, I settled on the color green for her, unused by the other magical girls. To express her atmosphere of not being dealt with through ordinary means, I put emphasis on the expression of her eyes.
Yukiko Aikei: As for the anime, I decreased the amount of roses and added tights to her. In the source material, you could see under her skirt and see her underwear but director Hashimoto expressed that during tense situations, he didn’t want that part to be seen so I hid it.
Hardgore Alice/Ako Hatoda:
maruino: Asari Endou-sensei’s instruction was to create an eerie Alice covered all in black so I didn’t want her to give off an impression of being all too cute. What I paid most attention to really was the color. Even if the color is the same, the depth of it can make all the difference.
Yukiko Aikei: To further solidify the eerie vibe around her, I made her give off the sensation of a bent back and made her body figure more angular. Also, even though she carries her plush doll by the ear in the model sheet, in the actual thing, she treats it with the appropriate care and cherishes it. (laughs)
Anyway, that was that. I hope you had fun finding out about all the trivia of the magical girls we’ve come to know and love!
If you’re starving for more MahoIku content, you might also wanna check out my posts on the various light novel arcs I have reviewed so far:
- Mahou Shoujo Ikusei Keikaku Restart
- Mahou Shoujo Ikusei Keikaku Limited
- Mahou Shoujo Ikusei Keikaku Jokers
And remember, kids: Stay magi-cool!