Magi – 18

magi-18-eight_generals-spartos-yamuraiha-sharrkan-jafar-hinahoho-sinbad-masrur-drakon-pisti-sindria-seven_seas_allianceThe story of Magi adheres to the style of individual and separate arcs to tell its tale.  How exactly does this method of storytelling impact these various stories and the overall flow of Magi?

magi-18-sinbad-king-turban-smile-awesomeLike many extensive or lengthy manga and anime, Magi directs its story through a series of grand story arcs.  With virtually all the problems of Balbadd resolved, the antagonists fleeing back to whatever darkness they emerged from and our heroes arriving in a new setting with new characters and a vast, untold potential, it’s obvious that we’re in the transition between arcs with the closure shown in Balbadd and the introductions starting in Sindria.  And with the conclusion of one arc, it might be fun to take a look at how this method of storytelling affects various story and plot aspects of Magi.

magi-18-morgiana-blush-embarrassed-cuteIn regards to the plot, having a system story arcs gives each major event in Magi its own individual story within the story.  Although these events are all loosely connected with each other through a central, main storyline, each story is given its own arc to explain and express itself keeping them distinctive and separate from each other.  Each story arc has ample time to keep its focus and attention on whatever specific issues, characters and challenges are present.  When everything is completed and concluded, Magi is free to move on to its next set of problems and obstacles for the characters.  Not only that but the various arcs continue to build off each other with the characters growing and maturing through each one.  However, this also means is the audience goes on a rollercoaster of highs and lows with each one seeing as each story has its own build-up, climax and conclusion.  And while this may be a good thing for each individual story, this method of storytelling, however, has a different effect on the flow of the story.

magi-18-sharrkan-yamuraiha-arguing-fighting-angry-conflict-friendshipThe flow within each story arc is able to take on its own style to fit the story, which means it’s ideal for the arc at hand, but that doesn’t necessarily mean the flow transitions well between arcs or even from arc to arc.  It’s clear-cut whenever one story arc ends and the next one begins.  The flow of the story can feels a bit jumpy or jittery at times, especially when comparing arcs to each other.  With this episode of Magi, there’s been an evident change in the style and flow of the story between the end of Balbadd and the beginning of Sindria.  It’s like we’ve just finished one journey and now we’re beginning a new one.  So while there are a number of positives of the story arc system for the individual stories, it is a bit murky when examining how it impacts the flow of the series.  It’s like driving in a car down a gorgeous scenic highway but constantly having to stop, start, stop, start, stop, and start again along the way.  It isn’t necessarily a problem inherit with the story arc system but it is a bit awkward in Magi given how distinctive these two arcs have been.  Hopefully as the series continues and the story progresses, the transition between arcs becomes smooth, seamless and unnoticeable since that would erase the troubles Magi has with flow between the arcs and keep the anime on a nice, smooth ride.

magi-18-morgiana-happy-dancing-smile-flowers-red_hair

magi-18-alibaba-angry-furious-mad-ragemagi-18-morgiana-aladdin-unhappy

magi-18-sinbad-harem-sindria_girls-festival-party-flowers-welcome_home magi-18-pisti-general-smile-friendly-waving

magi-18-southern_creature-sharrkan-sea_serpent-slish-attack-fish_meatI am very curious about the biology of the Southern Creature that terrorized Sindria momentarily in this episode.  No, no, I’m not merely interested in its anatomy and physiology, but more interested in the ecology surrounding the island nation and how such a beast could grow into existence.  What exactly does it eat and how does this food chain supply itself with numerous creatures to support the gargantuan size of the monster.  Not only that, but I’m curious as to why it attacked the town.  You’d figure the sea serpent would have a reason, such as looking for food or protecting its kin or something, but it seemed rather berserk and aimless in its rampage.  Maybe I’m overthinking things here but I’d love to learn more about the world and the setting of Magi with each new location visited.

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  1. #1 by bobbobsters on February 19, 2013 - 11:46 AM

    I knew that picture of Morgiana being all embarrassed was going in!

    Aside from that… Is it rather strange that the end of the arc is sorted out off screen? Deus Ex Sinbad romps over wherever he needs to, and near-magically fixes everything that the other characters were worried about at after leaving Balbadd. I feel like that’s often how his character will be used. Mentor, Patron, and all around defeater of our woes at the end of an arc. I feel like nothing is every really going to be truly dangerous with him around, or still alive.

    • #2 by avvesione on February 20, 2013 - 6:28 PM

      I don’t have a problem with the arc being finished off-screen since it’d be mainly boring diplomacy stuff going on and the story did need to advance past Balbadd (we spent 11 episodes there). I figure that finishing up the smaller details off-screen is probably the best course of action since the story was effectively stalled at that point since we knew Balbadd would be saved and that our heroes would be moving on to their next big challenge. I don’t have a problem with that.

      And yeah, that picture of Morgiana was too cute to pass.

    • #3 by windyturnip on February 25, 2013 - 11:29 AM

      I find it kind of amusing that the past few episodes have championed the benevolence of a republic while the most competent character is a monarch.

      I almost have to assume this is intentional. I can’t imagine that cognitive dissonance could get that bad.

      • #4 by avvesione on March 1, 2013 - 11:54 PM

        While it’s true that Sinbad is a monarch, I have trouble seeing Magi focus on that detail or portray him in the way of having absolute power, especially with his emphasis on the Seven Seas Alliance with the eight generals. It does enjoy promoting the theme of freedom and human rights (Morgiana, slaves, virtually everything about Balbadd with the king wanting to sell the rights of its people) but then again, that’s true for a majority of shounen shows which seems to be what Magi is focusing on with its story.

        But yeah, now that you mention it, it is amusing to think that a king/royalty is the one who is liberating these people from oppression.

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