[[caption-width-right:350:[[BlatantLies Cute magical girls]] [[SchmuckBait at its best!]][[note]]From left to right: [[KnightInShiningArmor Sayaka]] [[CuteBruiser Miki]], [[EmotionlessGirl Homura]] [[WildCard Akemi]], [[AllLovingHero Madoka]] [[TheIngenue Kaname]] (with [[WeaselMascot Kyu]][[ManipulativeBastard bey]] on her left arm), [[ProperLady Mami]] [[TeamMom Tomoe]] and [[JerkWithAHeartOfGold Kyoko]] [[BrokenBird Sakura]].[[/note]]]]
->''"A person becomes naïve if they're too kind. Careless if they're too bold. And no matter how hard you try to protect others, there's no gratitude. Those who can't comprehend such things aren't fit to be magical girls."''
-->-- '''Homura Akemi'''

Madoka Kaname is an OrdinaryMiddleSchoolStudent with a loving family and a close circle of friends. One day, an enigmatic girl called Homura Akemi [[NewTransferStudent transfers into her class]], setting off a chain of events that will completely change Madoka's life.

In the shadows of the city, a war is being waged between the [[EldritchAbomination grotesque witches]] and the {{magical girl}}s who fight to limit the former's destructive influences. A small [[WeaselMascot cat-like creature]] named Kyubey appears before Madoka, and offers to [[MakeAWish grant a single wish]] in exchange for her services as a magical girl. The idealistic Madoka wants to accept the contract so she can help people in need, but Homura ó who reveals herself to be a magical girl ó seems determined to stop Madoka for unknown reasons.

Bringing together an all-star staff, ''Puella Magi Madoka Magica'' has Creator/StudioShaft animating, Shaft's primary director [[Manga/SayonaraZetsubouSensei Aki]][[LightNovel/{{Bakemonogatari}} yuki]] [[MagicalGirlLyricalNanoha Shinbo]] directing, Music/YukiKajiura producing the music, [[{{Nitroplus}} Nitro+'s]] Creator/GenUrobuchi writing and Creator/UmeAoki designing the characters for Shaft's first [[AnimeFirst original series in a decade]]. The show started airing in January as part of the Winter 2011 season, though it was put on a temporary hiatus [[TooSoon due to the Sendai earthquakes in Japan]]. [[http://www.animenewsnetwork.com/news/2011-04-10/madoka-magica-anime-to-resume-on-april-21 The final two episodes were broadcast back-to-back on April 21st;]] the initial announcement was met with much rejoicing. [[http://www.animenewsnetwork.com/news/2011-06-21/1-million-stream-free-madoka-magica-in-japan-taiwan When it was aired on Nico Nico Douga]], over one million people watched. Compare this to ''Manga/LuckyStar'''s similar stream, which had over ''half'' a million.

The series has been dubbed and released in the US by Aniplex USA and Manga Entertainment in the UK. The series was aired on Australian TV on Creator/{{ABC3}} starting on the 29th of June. The series can now be found by [[EagleLand US]] users on [[http://www.crunchyroll.com/puella-magi-madoka-magica Crunchyroll]], [[http://www.hulu.com/madoka-magica Hulu]], [[https://www.daisuki.net/movies/seriesdetail/k Daisuki]] and [[http://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL5XBB1vj1xpjh3dlFM-4OyyTQJZErtyRe Daisuki's YouTube channel]] (all subbed), and dubbed on [[http://www.netflix.com/WiMovie/70302572 Netflix]].

In November 2011, a [[http://www.crunchyroll.com/anime-news/2011/11/07-1/madoka-magica-film-trilogy-confirmed-by-newtype theatrical film trilogy]] was announced. It is composed of the following:
#''Puella Magi Madoka Magica: Beginnings'': Part one of a CompilationMovie, released on October 6th, 2012.
#''Puella Magi Madoka Magica: Eternal'': Part two of the CompilationMovie, released on October 13, 2012.
#''[[Anime/PuellaMagiMadokaMagicaTheMovieRebellion Puella Magi Madoka Magica: Rebellion]]'': Part three of the CompilationMovie, released on October 26, 2013. A true sequel to the anime, originally intended to be its second season. The movie also introduces a new magical girl, Nagisa Momoe, to the team.

In December 2015, [[http://www.animenewsnetwork.com/news/2015-12-08/madoka-magica-concept-movie-will-be-core-of-new-project/.96224 a trailer]] for a new ''Puella'' "project" was released. Because of [[http://www.animenewsnetwork.com/news/2012-10-16/new-madoka-magica-show-considered-after-3rd-film previous announcements]] that the studio was considering making a ''Rebellion'' sequel, this may be confirmation of such a sequel.

In October 2016, it was revealed that the anime will be crossing over with {{VideoGame/The Battle Cats}}, featuring characters from the anime as Cat units and enemies. It has not yet been revealed what content will land on Madoka Magica's side.

The anime has several spin-offs, such as manga and games, which can be found in detail on the [[Franchise/MadokaMagica franchise]] page.

Compare ''Anime/NeonGenesisEvangelion'', ''Manga/{{Bokurano}}'', ''Manga/{{Narutaru}}'', ''Manga/AlienNine'', ''Anime/PrincessTutu'', ''Anime/RevolutionaryGirlUtena'', ''Literature/ASongOfIceAndFire'', and many other no-holds-barred {{Genre Deconstruction}}s. ''Madoka Magica'' has been perceived to be the [[FollowTheLeader primary inspiration]] for later shows like ''Anime/IlSolePenetraLeIllusioni'', ''Anime/YukiYunaIsAHero'', and ''Series/KamenRiderGaim'', though how much this is true is up for debate.

Contrast ''Manga/CardcaptorSakura'', which serves as the show's most obvious antecedent; ''Manga/{{Claymore}}'' and ''Franchise/LyricalNanoha'' which are examples of relatively adult and drama-laden treatment of the genre that are, however, played straight; and ''Anime/KillLaKill'' for a series that is arguably the antithesis to this show as well as ''Anime/PantyAndStockingWithGarterbelt'' for the comedic version of this show.

For some of the [[WholePlotReference inspiration]] of the series, see ''{{Faust}}''.

'''NOTE:''' Please put tropes for ''[[Anime/PuellaMagiMadokaMagicaTheMovieRebellion Rebellion]]'' on its own pages.

[+ '''''LateArrivalSpoiler Warning:''''' ''Puella Magi Madoka Magica'' is one of the most popular anime franchises in the anime fandom as of the winter 2011 season. In other words, there are a great deal of '''''SPOILERS''''' below -- most marked, some unmarked, but ''all'' of which may possibly ruin your enjoyment of the story. ''Avoiding these pages is highly suggested for those who have not seen the show.'' +]

!!This anime series provides examples of:

* PuellaMagiMadokaMagica/TropesAToF
* PuellaMagiMadokaMagica/TropesGToM
* PuellaMagiMadokaMagica/TropesNToS
* PuellaMagiMadokaMagica/TropesTToZ

->Donít forget.
->Always, somewhere,
->Someone is fighting for you.
->As long as you remember her,
->{{You are not alone}}.