Little Witch Academia is an absolutely delightful production from Studio Trigger, the same team that brought us Kill La Kill. I live under a rock so I’d never heard of it before, and honestly, I haven’t even watched Kill La Kill. I selected Little Witch Academia completely at random, and even though I was initially unsure of if I’d like it or not, I was very pleasantly surprised.
If you’re looking for a really deep or original story, you should look elsewhere. The story follows Akko, a girl who idolizes a celebrity witch named Shiny Chariot, and aspires to be just like her. Though she doesn’t come from a magical family, she enrolls in the Witch Academy to make her dream come true. We quickly find out that she’s a pretty terrible witch, but she’s able to make it by with the help of her friends, Lotte and Sucy. Her lack of skill and admiration of Shiny makes her a bit of an outcast with the other students. Akko’s rival, Diana, constantly reminds her that Shiny isn’t a real witch, and that nobody respects her. Akko refuses to accept this, and eventually their rivalry sets loose a powerful dragon. The rest of the students evacuate, leaving Akko behind to save the day.
Something about the storyline felt really familiar to me really quick. That’s definitely because it uses the typical magical academy scenario and is kind of similar to Harry Potter. Even so, I still found it really enjoyable to watch. I was actually a little upset when I realized that Little Witch Academia isn’t a series. It’s actually just a twenty-six minute long short film. Luckily, it was popular enough for fans to crowdfund the production of a second episode through Kickstarter.
With a runtime of less than half an hour, I feel that Trigger did a great job with the pacing of the story. They had to fit everything into one episode, but it didn’t feel rushed at all. They also did an awesome job with the show’s art. The animation is smooth, the backgrounds are gorgeous, and the characters are adorable. I wouldn’t call any of the characters unique, but they were all very charming.
Little Witch Academia was adorable. I enjoyed it quite a bit, even though it told a story that I’ve heard several times before. If you’re okay with the typical Magical Girl type anime, it’s definitely worth a watch, especially since you’ll only have to spare about half an hour for it.