Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha A’s

Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha A'sType: TV Series
Episode Count: 13
Genre: Fantasy / Sci-Fi
Vintage: 2005

Version reviewed: Japanese Subtitled
Date of Review: 03 Apr 2009

Grade: B

Magical girls haven’t rocked this hard in a long, long time.

Plot Summary
A short time after the events of the first series, Nanoha Takamachi is training to increase her mastery of her magical abilities when she is attacked seemingly out of nowhere by someone that she has never seen before. A new force of evil has been unleashed, and Nanoha must find out who is behind it and what they want.

The Review
If you absolutely despise magical girl shows, Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha A’s is the series for you. It takes the magical girl formula and combines it with the action of a shonen fighting series, and it works very well.

While the first Nanoha series laid the groundwork, A’s picks things up quickly with fast and furious action sequences from the very first episode. The best part is that these are well executed and exciting battles to watch. Sure, the girls call out the names of their attacks as in magical girl shows, but the way fights play out would seem right at home in, say, Bleach. Actually, fighters often call out attack names in shonen fighting series too, so there you go. Action packed battles in a magical girl show, and good ones at that.

Lest you believe that Nanoha A’s is more action and less magical girl, there is plenty of Girl Power and Do Your Best in this series to satisfy most mahou shoujo fans as well. Rooting for the underdog and Believing In The Power Of Friendship play important roles in the story, so the series wears its dual identities well. Magical Girl fans should find lots to enjoy, as long as they are receptive to the highly unconventional approach. Action fans should be happy as long as they are receptive to the idea of fourth grade girls (among others) being the ones dishing out the pain. (Magically, mind you.)

Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha A’s is an excellent continuation of the story begun in the first series, and as with the end of the first lending itself to this sequel, A’s leaves the door wide open for a third series, which it did receive. I am very interested to find out where the story goes next, and now it’s just a matter of waiting for the third series to reach this side of the Pacific.

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