When Symphogear G crashed onto the scene, it introduced three new Wielders. We’ve already talked about Maria, so now it’s time to take a look at her partners! Stay Toon’d!
Hey guys. ‘Sup?
We’re back for more March of the Magical Girls!
And that means more Symphogear G.
Last time, we talked about how the character of Maria represented a muuuch needed boost in the character writing department. The inclusion of her, at all, pretty much heralded a more refined approach to the storytelling of the series, forcing all the other characters to fall in line with the style of story she was being used to tell.
Yeah! It was totally a change for the better! It meant that the whole series had a lot more of an identity, once she got thrown into the mix!
But two other beautiful girls got added to the mix as well. My darling Kirika-
And my precious lil Shirabe!
Uh… riiight. Well, they were handled pretty well… for the most part.
No argument, there.
Overall, I really enjoyed the two of them. In some aspects, they actually felt like they were handled even better than Maria. She was overall superior, I think. But they felt a little more… rounded.
Hmmm. I can see it. All of Maria’s screentime was pretty thoroughly dedicated to the plot and her inner conflict.
True! Kirika and Shirabe got a bunch of scenes just to flesh them out a little.
Right. We can also add that the interplay was a big part of their appeal. It made them really endearing, especially since none of the other Wielders actually have quite the same dynamic, going on. They aren’t played as a parallel to any of the Primary Color Squad. They have a uniquely symbiotic dynamic.
True. This season did actually build a lot on the relationship between Tsubasa and Yukine, but never so much that it felt like the two of them were each other’s “most important person.”
A waaay closer comparison is actually with Hibiki and Miku, right? They have a relationship like that. They even wind up fighting, in the season. Again.
True. Though the circumstances were pretty stupid, if I’m honest. Also a little on the convenient side. But seeing Kirika and Shirabe fighting over somewhat similar – if inverted – reasoning was a nice touch.
I only wish we knew more about them. It probably would’ve made their arc even stronger, no?
That did rub me the wrong way. They show up and make a big impact, even making Hibiki doubt herself and her own motives. But Hibiki seemed to buckle to them a little too easily, didn’t she?
Knowing more about them a bit sooner would definitely have helped that, yeah. And even when we do learn more, it’s not much. Definitely not enough to make it feel like a reasonable outcome that Hibiki takes everything they say to heart. It’s basically just an arguably weaker version of Yukine’s backstory, actually.
Still, I love them. They’re a lot of fun, they have some wonderful interactions, and they’re just so darn CUTE together!
Yeah. But I think the big thing we’re not mentioning is how they really are a sort of master-class in building to a payoff. For as weak as their standing is, if we pretty much ignore their load on the actual plot, to an extent, their own shared arc is actually one of the best parts of the entire season.
The setup was actually handled pretty well. Having them be orphans who were potential carriers of Fine’s soul tied into the plot a little, which kept it from feeling out of place and made for a really effective Red Herring with the Maria storyline.
Right. But when it actually became important upon learning that Maria wasn’t the carrier, it shifted the focus on that one aspect of the story to the two of them, making for a much more intimate arc that didn’t overshadow the main story.
When Kirika protects Shirabe from those falling beams, it’s a great reveal. Especially since they built up the worry about Fine taking over Maria, early on! So you start to really understand where she’s coming from as she pushes herself more and more to go through with their radical plan.
She wants to leave her mark behind before she disappears. An ideal world for the one person she cares most about. It’s really kind of tragic, watching that despair tearing her apart.
All the more tragic when you learn that Kirika isn’t the carrier. Shirabe is.
The final clash between the two of them gives us another example of setup and payoff. Earlier, we learn that one of Kirika’s attacks bypasses all of its target’s defenses and strikes right at her opponent’s soul. An Instant Kill move.
And in what’s probably the best overall example of a payoff in the entire second season, Fine’s soul protects Shirabe, one final time. This isn’t just a payoff to this one fight, though. Or even to the arc between the two of them.
It’s a wonderful payoff to the first season. It showed the impact Hibiki was able to have on her, inspiring her final act of goodwill.
They in no way had to include any of this. I’m well aware of that. But the fact that they did just sold me on this arc. A great way to close the book on that whole thing, I’d say.
And there you go! My lovely Kirika~
And my adorable Shirabe!
Would you two quit drooling, already? If I wanna go for a swim, I’ll hit the pool.
Eh? But you can’t-
ANYWAY, they’re right! That’s it for this spotlight, guys! Our take on Kirika and Shirabe. A Master Class in Setup-and-Payoff. What do you guys think of ’em? Let us know, down below.
And don’t forget to keep an eye out because March of the Magical Girls is far from over!
Mhmm~ My girls, here, still have two whole episodes of their show before they call it quits, after all.
Awww, we should really get you on the show someti-
I… mean… s-she’s way too busy to help us out with that. C’mon. She’s, like, our gal in the chair, right? And she does such a good job at it! If she’s not here to hold down the fort, then we’ll be in big trouble, y’know?
Fufufu. Someone’s a fibber.
Oh, zip it. Anyway, this has been a Bulletoon Extra.
I’m Rila, signing off!
I’m Riley, bowin’ out.
Thanks for Watching!
Keep up the Awesome!
And, as always…