[[caption-width-right:332:Padudu, Pipin & Myumyu]]

One day Padudu, a young girl from Sea Heaven, decides she wants to become a {{magical girl}} and heads out to Sweetland. There she must try to win contests and fight other magical girls candidates to collect "Flower Marks". Once she collects a total of twelve Flower Marks, she has the right to call herself a fully fledged magical girl, with all the fame and privileges that come with the title.

Padudu is accompanied by her comanion Uokichi, a fish that she wears as a cloak. She can also use him as an emergency food supply, even though Uokichi is not too happy about that. Padudu bumps into Pipin and Myumyu, with whom she forms an at times uneasy alliance. There is also Nonononn, a former candidate, who appears to have a score to settle with Purulun, Sweetland's [[GodSaveUsFromTheQueen rather cruel queen]]. Add to this Ketchup and Mustard, the inept police officers of Sweetland, plus Zucchini, Queen Purulun's clueless minion, and you have yourself a rather strange bunch of characters indeed.

''Magical Play'' started out as a series of 23 {{web animation}} episodes, released in 2001. It's an {{affectionate parody}} of the {{magical girl}} genre, especially the warrior variety. The character design is by Kiyohiko Azuma, who is better known for his works ''Manga/AzumangaDaioh'' and ''Manga/{{Yotsuba}}''. An {{OVA}} has also been made, using 3D techniques and with a storyline that diverges quite a bit from the original series.

This anime is available on [[http://www.hulu.com/magical-play Hulu]].


* AffectionateParody: Especially in Episode 20, where Padudu plays a simulation game that puts her in the role of a MagicalGirl on Earth. A ClicheStorm of MagicalGirl tropes follows.
* AffablyEvil: Purulun and Coffee.
* AlienLunch: Mustard and Ketchup have some strange culinary habits.
* AppliedPhlebotinum: The girls' magical weapons.
* ArtShift: A few episodes are suddenly rendered in 3D, even though Padudu and Myumyu stay 2D.
** And then of course there's the {{OVA}}, although the character designs still rather faithfully follow the original.
* {{Backstory}}: Purulun and Nonononn share quite an extensive one.
* BalloonBelly: The girls in episodes 5 and 14
* BunniesForCuteness: Pipin wears a bunny girl costume and has a stuffed bunny for a sidekick.
* ButtMonkey: Zucchini
** And Uokichi, poor guy. At least Zucchini deserves what he gets
* ClothingDamage: Myumyu suffers from a very peculiar variation when the cats that make up her outfit... abandon their positions.
* ComedicSociopathy: Padudu's treatment of Oukichi. In one episode, Myumyu and Pipin even [[LampshadeHanging ask her]] how she can eat bits of her own partner.
* ConspicuousCG: The {{OVA}} is completely made of this. The flashbacks and some of the {{Imagine Spot}}s are done in this style as well.
* DarkerAndEdgier: The OVA is much grittier in tone than the original series.
* DarkSkinnedBlonde: Myumyu
* EdibleThemeNaming: Ketchup, Mustard, and Zucchini.
* EverythingsCuterWithKittens: Myumyu basically wears a bikini formed by two cat-like creatures. Really.
* FaceHeelTurn: [[spoiler: Purulun toward Nonononn, in the backstory]].
** It is also hinted with [[spoiler:Myumyu's behavior]], but it never happens in the end.
* GenkiGirl: Padudu has some of this
* GirlishPigtails: Mustard wears these, since she's the more childish and inept of the two cops.
* GodSaveUsFromTheQueen: Purulun
* GottaCatchEmAll: The Flower Marks, although rather than searching for them, the girls compete in contests and duels to earn them.
* HairDecorations: Pipin's dangley carrot bobbles and Myumyu's cat-paw prints, although it's debatable whether those decs make them look cute or just weird.
* HandOrObjectUnderwear: Myumyu's "cat-bikini".
* HoistByHisOwnPetard: Myumyu cheats at the eating contest by feeding all the food to her two cats. She wins, but when she stands up at the end, the cats are so stuffed that they pass out and fall off, leaving her [[ClothingDamage completely nude]].
* HowDoIShotWeb: Padudu sometimes forgets that Uokichi can ''fly''.
* IdiotHero: Padudu. Big time.
* IneptMage: Mustard. Also Padudu herself, to some degree.
* LateForSchool: This happens during [[spoiler:one of the magical girl aptitude tests, which take the form of an adventure game]].
* LimitedWardrobe
* MacGuffin: The hanamaru aka Flower Marks.
* MagicWand: Padudu's is shaped like, what else, a dead fish.
* MagicalGirl: Or at least apprentices.
* MoodWhiplash: Everything turns unexpectedly serious during the Showa Arc.
* NoEnding: The main series literally has none. The {{OVA}}'s ending functions more as a {{sequel hook}}, although no sequel has ever been produced.
* NonHumanSidekick: Uokichi (a fish) for Padudu, Lyka and Akyl (cats) for Myumyu, Sekine (a bunny) to Pipin. Nonononn's sidekick is a ''hammerhead shark''.
* NoseBleed: Zucchini is prone to this around Myumyu.
* TheOneGuy: Zucchini
* PowerTrio: Padudu, Pipin & Myumyu.
* TheQuest
* ReadingYourRights: In the 3-D episode, when Ketchup and Mustard arrest the girls for [[FelonyMisdemeanor being 2-D]], Myumyu demands that they get their rights read to them. Mustard does so, but she forgets how it goes and says the wrong thing.
* RememberedICouldFly: Padudu falls out of the sky and knocks Pipin unconscious in the first episode, costing the latter a Flower Mark (and a great deal of dignity). In a later episode, she saves everyone from falling to their death by ''flying'', and, when asked by Pipin why she hadn't done so in the first instance, reveals that earlier, she ''forgot she could''. Pipin's reaction is priceless.
* TheRival: Purulun to Nonononn. Also Pipin toward Padudu, although technically all girls are each other's rivals. Pipin even openly declares herself to be Padudu's "life-long rival."
* RoadSignReversal: Zucchini switches a sign with arrows pointing to "Town" and "Desert." However, since the sign was one large board, he does this by flipping it upside down, words and all. The main characters still fall for it.
* ShooOutTheClowns: Myumyu, Pipin and Zucchini are nowhere to be seen in either the Showa arc or the OVA.
* SneezeCut: Happens to Purulun and Nonononn when other people are talking about them.
* StandingInTheHall: In the "Magical Girl on Earth" simulator, Padudu is given this punishment for accidentally tackling her teacher.
* {{Stripperiffic}}: Myumyu's "outfit".
* TakeOurWordForIt: We never actually see Myumyu's wardrobe malfunctions we just see Zucchini's reactions to them.
* TraitorShot: Both Myumyu and Purulun get a few of those.
* WalkingTheEarth
* WebAnimation: How this started.
* WidgetSeries: Oh yes.
* YaoiFangirl: Apparently, girls can detect Yaoi by ''smell''.
* YouGottaHaveBlueHair: Pipin and Ketchup have actual blue hair, while Nonononn's is lavender.