Anime / Little Witch Academia

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"Never forget, a believing heart is your magic."

Witch-in-training Akko Kagari dreams of following in the footsteps of Shiny Chariot, whose flashy stage magic captivated Akko during her youth. But Akko has three problems standing between her and her dream: Akko doesn't come from a wizard family (she can't even fly a broom properly), class queen bee Diana Cavendish continually upstages her, and most of the wizarding community thinks of Shiny Chariot as little more than a charlatan. But when a great threat threatens to destroy the school, can Akko's faith in Shiny Chariot ultimately save her friends and their magic?

Little Witch Academia is a half-hour short produced as part of Japan's "Young Animator Training Project," a government-sponsored program which hopes to train new animators under the guidance of industry masters; in this case, Yoh Yoshinari of Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann and Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt fame produced the show alongside Studio Trigger.

Studio Trigger later uploaded the short on YouTube with full English subtitles. Acttil, a new video game and anime localization company, released the short on Blu-ray in North America in Summer 2013 (which became the company's first release).

While initially created as a stand-alone short, Academia's sudden popularity resulted in a Kickstarter campaign asking for additional funding for a second episode. It reached its goal in five hours. By the time the Kickstarter ended it had made its stretch goal of a half-million, earning over six-hundred-thousand overall.

The second, longer movie, Little Witch Academia: The Enchanted Parade, premiered for Kickstarter pledgers July 3rd, 2015note  and was released for the general public in October of the same year. Akko, Sucy, and Lotte are tasked with planning the annual Witch Parade, a parade that commemorates the Witch Hunts of the middle ages, after they have once again caused trouble. They are not the only troublemakers tasked with the "prestigious" task as they are joined by Amanda O'Neill, wannabe thief, Constanze Braunschbank Albrechtsberger, a Magitek Gadgeteer Genius, and Jasminka Antonenko, a Big Eater.

Both shorts are available on Netflix in its original Japanese audio, as well as an all-new English dub, not to mention Chilean Spanish, Brazilian Portuguese, French and Italian dubs, being the first Studio Trigger title with dubs in other languages besides Englishnote 

On June 24th, 2016 Studio Trigger announced that a full-length television series had been green-lit and was in production. The series began airing in January 8th, 2017 and is currently ongoing.

Tropes:

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    The Series 
  • Absurdly Sharp Blade: The first thing the resurrected corpse from Episode 9 does is to cut in half a tombstone with his centuries-old sword.
  • Adults Are Useless: Most prominently when Diana discovers the school was scammed for centuries by a contract written in a language none of the professors could read. The adults are generally incapable of doing anything other than teaching and scolding, although Ursula occasionally gets to do something (other than being Shiny Chariot), such as when she saves Akko and Andrew from a rampaging bear.
  • All Just a Dream: Episode 8 seems to be one of Akko dreaming that Sucy had drank a potion she just created and went into a coma, with her having to dive into her mind to wake her. It's a dream for the fact that she sees an image of the academy being destroyed by mushrooms sprouting from Sucy's body (with Lotte supposedly being crushed to death by them). Though at the end of the episode, a mushroom sprouts from Sucy's bed after the girls head off to class.
  • All Part of the Show: In episode 9, Akko passes off the antics of a reanimated corpse as being part of an elaborate street performance.
    • Episode 10 has Andrew turn Akko's attempts to swat the fallin lovelove bee into part of the evening's entertainment, by accompanying her on the piano with Flight of the Bumblebee.
  • Alien Blood: The corpse in episode 9 has green blood and tears.
  • Alternate Continuity: The series takes place when Akko begins her time at Luna Nova and as such has her acquire Shiny Rod a lot sooner then she did in the OVA (Series: Found in Arcturus Forest; OVA: Found under a pile of junk stashed in a dungeon). A few things though are the same, such as Diana being present at the Shiny Chariot show during the A Minor Kidroduction.
    • Much like in the Manga companion to the OVAs, Akko and Sucy do not get along very well at first.
  • Always a Bigger Fish: In the first episode, Akko tries to have the man-eating and tentacle-wielding mandragora and the giant cockatrice take each other out, but it only slows the cockatrice down and it almost gets the trio.
  • Amusing Injuries: In the very first episode Sucy states that witches are very hard to kill. Apparently even a minimal magical training like Akko's it enough to shake off pain and injuries.
  • Animated Armor: Croix animates a suit of armor in episode 17. Said armor promptly attaches itself to a hapless Appleton Academy student and goes on a rampage until Amanda manages to defeat it.
  • Animate Dead: In episode 9 the combination of Akko's Restoration Magic and Sucy's graveyard mushroom winds up reviving a corpse.
  • Art Evolution: In reverse. While it's only to be expected due to being a TV adaptation of the OVA, the backgrounds (done by Studio Bihou, as opposed to Studio Pablo) are a considerable downgrade.
  • Art Shift: Two incidents in Episode 8:
    • Sucy's inner theater displays her memories in a Inkblot Cartoon Style with much more fluid and cartoonish animation than what is standard for both the franchise.
    • As Akko prepares to give Sucy the antidote potions, there's a shift to a Shoujo style, including sharp noses that could double as letter openers.
    • Again in Episode 10, those targeted by people affected by the fallin lovelove bee get an extra-wide-eyed, Shojo-like look and flowered Love Bubbles. But only to those affected by the bee.
    • Episode 18 has a couple of scenes where Akko looks older and slightly different. It's unclear whether it is all part of the Super Robot/Gurren Lagann style parody or just an animation mistake.
    • The endings of the anime feature a simpler art style than the rest of the episodes, especially the second one, which is drawn in a lineless style.
  • Astonishingly Appropriate Appearance: In episode 6, Andrew pulls no punches when telling Akko exactly how little he cares for magic. Shortly after this, Akko's magical misfires fall just short of turning him into a literal ass.
  • Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever: Akko turns a squirrel into an enormous monstrosity to create a distraction so they can sneak into a party.
  • Barehanded Blade Block: Akko does it with a guillotine in episode 8.
  • Bears are Bad News: Arcas, the gigantic polar bear guardian of the Polaris Fountain.
  • Big Fancy House: The Hanbridge manor is massive.
  • Bland-Name Product: In episode 18, Constanze needs a hand mixer with orichalcum (a magical metal) beaters for her newest project (a giant magitek ship to enter the Wild Hunt with), so she has a look at a bare-faced rip-off of eBay or rather cbay. The brand she's looking at is "KitchenHelp" instead of the real brand KitchenAid.
  • Breather Episode: Episode 16, after the Serial Escalation from 11-15, is much sillier and relaxed, though it still manages to have tension.
  • Brick Joke: Why, in episode 1, is there a fishbowl—complete with what appears to be a fish wearing a witch's hat—up on stage with all the professors? Well, as you learn in episode 7, she's one of the professors, and speaks only inscrutable fish-ese.
  • Cacophony Cover Up: In episode 10, Akko magics up a giant squirrel as a distraction so that she, Lotte and Sucy can sneak into a party undetected.
  • Character Name and the Noun Phrase: Episode 17, "Amanda O'Neill and the Holy Grail".
  • Chekhov's Armoury: Not only did Akko collect every single Shiny Chariot trading card in her childhood (save for an ultra-rare one), but also memorized their flavor text by heart. The cards have spells that the Shiny Rod can cast, along with useful facts about magical wildlife.
  • Chekhov's Gun: The spells Akko cast with Shiny Rod at vital moments? Turns out they are like password needed to unlock Arcturus, a magical prison containing the Grand Triskelion, the last magic created by the Founders of Luna Nova. Oh, and the real name for Shiny Rod? Claiomh Solais, the key.
    • In Episode 2, Akko mentions having collected all of the Shiny Chariot cards, save one ultra rare card. Come Episode 19, Diana has that card as a special treasure!
  • Continuity Nod: After episode 3, newspapers shown on screen tend to have an article about Shooting Star sightings as it flies around the world.
  • Corporal Punishment: When a witch commits fraud using magic, her tongue will be branded with a hot iron. The punishment for murder is even worse (see Eaten Alive below)
  • Crisis Makes Perfect: When someoneís life isnít in danger, Akko forgets that spells require Magical Incantations. Consequentially, using the Shiny Rod properly is a Once per Episode thing. But to be fair, Shiny Chariot hardly ever needed words to cast magic.
  • Crush Filter: Apparently the love-bee's sting turns the targeted girl into an exaggerated stereotype of shoujo gorgeousness, complete with sparkles. We never see what it makes guys look like.
  • A Day in the Limelight: Most episodes focus on Akko and her personal growth into a great witch but Episodes 4, 8, 17, 18, and 19 focus on other characters.
  • Dark-Skinned Redhead: Wangari, the announcer that follows the flying broom competition in episode 3.
  • Death by Childbirth: Episode 9 reveals that Headmistress Holbrooke's mother died shortly after giving birth to her.
  • Dismantled MacGuffin: A variation. Shiny Rod is not physically dismantled; but to fully reactivate it, someone, i.e. Akko, must use seven different incantations. Ursula already knows the words, but they apparently only work in specific adventurous situations.
  • Does This Remind You of Anything?: While a teacher is demonstrating potion brewing in episode two, most of the characters are shown to be bothered by the fumes. Sucy however has quite a different response.
  • Don't Go in the Woods: The Arcturus Forest. It is said that witches trapped in there are never able to leave. By episode 11 reveal, the name of the forest AND the meaning of the aforementioned saying became more important than ever.
  • Early-Bird Cameo: All side characters, Diana, Amanda, Constanze and Jasminka, appear during the matriculation ceremony. Andrew, who's introduced in episode 6, appears in the opening since episode 1.
  • Easter Egg: The identity of "GreatBen810" is not explicitly revealed, but if you pay close attention near the end of episode 4, you may spot Professor Badcock, of all people, carrying that Big Ben costume.
  • Eaten Alive: If a witch commits murder using magic, she will be executed by being eaten alive by mice with incisors sharp as blades.
    • The Samhain Festival's sacrifice exhibition is a non-lethal example.
  • Elaborate University High: Appleton Academy - which is modelled after Eton College, a real life example of this trope.
  • Explosive Stupidity: Akko caused a big-ass explosion during her fundamental alchemy exam, destroying an window, a part of the wall around the window and giving her an unwanted makeover.
  • Eye Poke: Akko's stuffed bird immediately pecks her in the eye after being brought to life by Sucy.
  • Fate Worse Than Death: The punishment for a witch defying the ban on necromancy.
    • When Akko accidentally revives an amnesiac pirate who was also the father of Luna Nova's headmistress, the punishment is commuted to having to repair a room full of broken flying brooms by hand, presumably because it was an accident.
  • Five-Second Foreshadowing: Sucy is reading about the Arcturus Forest right before Akko gets her and Lotte pushed out of the Ley Line and into said forest. Before that, the pamphlet Akko was using to find the "bus" terminal also mentions to be careful when travelling do to Luna Nova being surrounded by a forest filled with "...Mandrakes, Cockatrices, and other colorful creatures."
  • Forbidden Zone: The "Arcturus Forest" is full of deadly magical creatures such as at least one cockatrice and giant and deadly mandragoras with lotsa tentacles.
  • Foreshadowing:
    • In Episode 1, the dragon at Chariot's show appears out of a set of cubes. Come episode 11, and one of Akko's visions is a similar set of cubes forming a serpent, and a set of yellow cubes at the very end of episode 13 also appear and form a larger cube, just like what the dragon appeared from.
    • Whenever and episode opens with Akko, Sucy, and Lotte talking together in their dorm room, something in the conversation will either be related to the conflict of the episode (such as in Ep. 13) or outright foreshadowing (such as in ep 11).
    • In the wormhole on the way to the school, there are brief flashes that offer hints to later episodes. Among the seen objects are the magical butterflies, the Shooting Star broom, the Night Fall book, the guy from the opening, and a wistful Shiny Chariot.
  • Friend or Idol Decision: In episode 11, the moon spirit offers Akko an ideal future where she succeeds in following Chariot's footsteps...but demands that she give up her memories of her time in Luna Nova in exchange. Akko's refusal to do so causes her to pass the spirit's Secret Test of Character, which unlocks the second Arcturus word of the Shiny Rod.
  • Getting Crap Past the Radar:
    • During the second episode we see several of the classes the girls attend which includes potions. Most of the students are bothered by the fumes, but Sucy seems to enjoy them a bit too much.
    • Lotte references the Oedipus Complex by name in the fourth episode.
    • She also references gay slash fiction in the same episode.
    • In episode 10 when Akko's looking for a dress, she pulls out a Playboy bunny outfit.
    • Sucy gets thrilled at the thought of getting sacrificed, that is, eaten and expelled by the Vajarois apparition. She also has a look of bliss when it actually happens. In other words, she's into vore.
  • Giant Flyer: The cockatrice. Sure, it looks like a chicken with a snake tail, but it's the size of a T. rex and is perfectly capable of chasing you from the air.
  • Good Angel, Bad Angel: Akko meets a pair upon entering Sucy's mind in Episode 8. They argue about whether to kill Akko painfully or peacefully.
  • Gorgeous Garment Generation: The ability of the Cinderella dress up set in episode 10. But its effects end after two hours, rather than at midnight.
  • Hard Work Hardly Works: Subverted big time. Akko goes in thinking this will be in effect, and because of it, she fails constantly, and its even explicitly pointed out in Epidode 6 that she might be The Chosen One, but the power will be denied until she is properly trained and knows her stuff by putting in the necessary hard work.
  • The Hecate Sisters: The main trio easily maps to Maiden: Akko, Mother: Lotte, Crone: Sucy. The Diana/Hannah/Barbara trio doesn't, because Diana so outshines the other two. The Amanda/Jasminka/Constanze trio could be mapped multiple ways.
  • Huge Guy, Tiny Girl: Lotte's parents, as seen in episode 16.
  • I Kiss Your Hand: Andrew plants a kiss on Akko's hand after being stung by the fallin lovelove bee in episode 10. Cue Akko freaking out.
  • Impact Silhouette: In episode 16 a yeti does this to his home's door after being driven crazy by Akko and her constant demands for a perfect magical ingredient. It Makes Sense in Context.
  • Journey to the Center of the Mind: Basically the plot of Episode 8.
  • Large Ham: The corpse Akko accidentally revives spends almost the entirety of episode 9 over-dramatizing every trivial step in his frantic Roaring Rampage of Revenge.
  • Late-Arrival Spoiler: The series doesn't even bother hiding the fact that Professor Ursula is Shiny Chariot.
    • It drops ever less subtle hints in episodes 1, 2, 3, 5, 6, 7, and 9, then drops all pretense in 11.
  • "Leave Your Quest" Test: The "blue moon apparition" offers to make Akko just like her hero, Shiny Chariot, at the cost of her past. She rejects the offer to work towards that goal on her own, gaining another Arcturus word for Shiny Rod in the process. Chariot herself was given a similar test many years ago.
  • Legacy Character: In episode 4, we learn the name Annabel Creme is actually shared between thirteen different people who wrote the Nightfall series.
  • Literary Allusion Title: Episode 20, "Sense and Sensibility".
  • Long Runner: Exaggerated in-universe example in Nightfall, an obvious parody of Twilight which has 365 books written over the span of 120 years.
  • Love Potion: The fallin lovelove bee. Its sting forces Love at First Sight, but its effect ends when it dies. It's Exactly What It Says on the Tin, save for it's obviously a wasp with Funny Animal Anatomy.
  • The Magic Goes Away:
    • Implied by the conversation between Fafnir the dragon and Luna Nova's faculty in episode 5. The academy is under-funded because the new students are one tenth of what they were during magic users' golden age, and now that technology is widespread and normal people don't care about magic that much. In fact, the dragon himself does online trading on his computer, instead of hoarding a treasure.
    • Related. In episode 6 we see that Student!Chariot was able to do significant magic in the same town where magic is now useless. And that was only 12-15 years ago, at most.
    • In Episode 14, a graph shows a steady decline in available magic resources since the mid 1600s.
  • Magitek: Magic-powered technology is rare because it's frowned upon by traditionalist witches, but Constanze is constantly tinkering with inventions like this. In the series, Professor Croix is introduced halfway through the series as a true master at modernizing magic through devices she's invented.
  • A Minor Kidroduction: Much like the OVA, the series starts with Child!Akko at a Shiny Chariot show. The show is pretty different in terms of content, but a few things stayed the same — such as Chariot's Catch Phrase and a Child!Diana also being in attendance.
  • Morph Weapon: The Shining Rod transforms into seven different weapons, depending on the spell thatís cast.
  • Mushroom Samba: The entirety of Episode 8 is this after Sucy drinks a mushroom poison.
  • NaÔve Newcomer: Akko, even more than in the OVA, as she is first entering not only Luna Nova, but also the witch world as a whole.
  • Nonindicative Name: Before Shiny Chariot found the Shiny Rod, it was called the Claíomh Solais, named after a sword made of light recurring in Irish folklore. It does not turn into a Laser Blade.
  • No OSHA Compliance: Students of Appleton Academy apparently settle any disputes by having a fencing duel on an extremely narrow, elevated stone bridge with no railings in sight. When Amanda is forced into a duel in episode 17, she nearly falls mutiple times.
  • O.O.C. Is Serious Business: In episode 10, Akko realises something is up when Andrew goes from vocally wanting to eject her from his party to professing his undying love for her in the span of a sentence.
  • Off Model: Luna Nova's landscapes and architecture are huge and intricately detailed, and Trigger shows as much of the background as possible. It's common to see characters shown from a distance while they're outside. And when characters are shown from a distance, their details suffer.
  • Our Dragons Are Different: In this case, the dragon is a daytrader and loan shark in a robe and slippers.
  • Out-of-Genre Experience: The last few minutes (barring the ending) of episode 18 turn into a mecha anime, complete with Calling Your Attacks and Finishing Move, thanks to Constanze's mechanical genius and Akko's stubbornness.
  • Police Are Useless: In Episode 9. They spot a reanimated skeleton in period attire rummaging in the trash; Lotte says he's his grandfather who is also a pirate and who needs to look in everything that resembles a treasure chest. They buy it and go away without doing anything.
  • Post-Modern Magik:
    • Fafnir the dragon, believes that the age of magic has passed and has since adopted technology. He uses mechanical dragons for his security system and supplements his greed via online trading and scamming Luna Nova.
    • Constanze, Constanze, Constanze! All of her magic is merged with technology, from her propeller-driven broom to magical microwave ovens to magic rocket-propelled grenades!
    • Croix specializes in this. Her 'brooms' look like Roombas and act like drones, and she uses a smart phone as her wand.
    • The girls use a crystal ball to browse the internet.
  • Power Incontinence: Akko's transformation magic assignment in Episode 6 keeps backfiring. Instead of changing a rat into a bunny, she keeps getting bunny ears herself.
  • Public Domain Artifact:
    • In episode 11, it's revealed that the Shiny Rod is actually Claiomh Solais, the Sword of Light from Celtic Mythology.
    • Episode 17, "Amanda O'Neill and the Holy Grail", features... guess what. Actually it was a fake Grail put in Appleton Academy by Croix to test some of her experiments and possibly get Akko and Amanda killed by the anti-witch students at Appleton.
  • Recurring Extra: There are several students who appear in the background on a fairly regular basis.
  • Rewatch Bonus: Croix's shape-shifting cubes are first seen briefly as a Freeze-Frame Bonus in episode 11, converging into ball in her hand at the tail end of episode 13 and in episode 14 transforming from an artificial faerie into a bigger monster. Now, if you go watch Chariot's magic show from the first episode again...
  • Running Gag: Every time a newspaper is shown, one of the stories is the Shooting Star showing up in various places around the world.
  • Secret Test of Character: Akko is put through this in the climax of Episode 11.
  • Serial Escalation: Not the show itself, but the fact that in episode four its mentioned that one character in the In-Universe series of novels "Night Fall" caught a nuke with their bare hands is a pretty strong indicator that the series was subjected to this.
  • Ship Tease:
    • Played for Laughs, the end of Episode 8 teases Akko/Sucy when Akko decides to revive/wake Sucy up by drinking all the potions and giving them to Sucy via mouth-to-mouth. Akko wonders about giving Sucy her first kiss but shrugs it off, saying it won't count because they're friends.
    • There's tons of tease in episode 10 - such Akko/Diana, Akko/Andrew, Lotte/Frank and Diana/Diana. While Akko/Diana is played for laughs, both boys harbour some lingering interest in their respective witch after the spell has worn off.
    • In the second opening song, Akko and Diana walk past each other but end up holding hands.
  • Shout-Out: Has its own page.
  • Shown Their Work:
    • Many have noticed that Sucy's broom is a walis-tambo, a broom that's found in many Filipino households. She also fits the mold for the traditional trickster hex witch (a Mambabarang, or a Mamalarang in her case).
    • In episode 16, the research on Finland shows well in the food, architecture, and costumes worn by the people we meet.
    • In episode 18. all of Constanze's tools are German models.
  • Slapstick Knows No Gender: Especially in Akko's case, but the other girls are hardly free from physical comedy.
  • Special Person, Normal Name: The most powerful witch in history was named... Jennifer.
  • Spell My Name with an "S": in Episode 12, the fansubbers transliterated the ghost's name as 'Bahalowa', but the actual name, revealed in episode 13 is 'Vajarois'.
  • Star Power: A big theme of the show is starsÖ
    • ...especially concerning anything related to the Shiny Rod, which has its gemstones positioned in the shape of Ursa Major right from the start.
      • The previous owner has a Stellar Name and teaches astrology, but the rest of that goes in her character page.
      • It was kept in the Fountain of Polaris, and guarded by a polar bear named Arcas. Arcas is the hero in Classical Mythology that became Ursa Minor, and Polaris is a star in that constellation.
      • Each gemstone can perform one of the Seven Words of Arcturus. Arcturus is the fourth-brightest star in the sky and forms the constellation Boötes.
    • Professor Croix's name is a reference to the constellation known as the Southern Cross, or Croix du Sud in French.
    • Luna Novaís name is heavily space-themed, and translates to "New Moon." The moon has more direct effects with a literal Blue Moon causing various strange happenings, and the prestigious "Moonlit Witch" award.
    • The Arc Symbol is a four-pointed star.note 
    • If Akko and company need to sneak out at night, itís usually to meet a Celestial Deadline.
    • The worldís fastest broom is named the Shooting Star.
    • Horoscope reading is a magic one can study, allowing you to see into the future.
    • Professor Pisces. She's a fish.
    • Bellatrix, Diana's ancestor and one of the Nine Olde Witches, is named after a blue giant star in the constellation Orion.
  • The Stinger: Episode 12 ends with Hannah and Barbara still standing outside in the middle of the night, as instructed by Akko in Diana's form. Barbara sneezes.
  • Surprisingly Good English: All of the text in the series is in perfect English, even getting things such as Internet slang right.
  • Technician vs. Performer: Diana and Akko fit this trope perfectly.
  • Tertiary Sexual Characteristics: All the sisters of the talking fish that Akko helps in episode 7 wear little pink bows.
  • The Time of Myths: There are multiple mentions an era that ended about 200 years ago and holds the title of the Golden Age of Magic. Since then, witches are dwindling in numbers. Highlights of this time include:
  • Tomato in the Mirror: The 'evil' man who the revived corpse is searching for in episode 9 is none other than... himself.
  • Together in Death: Headmistress Holbrooke's parents in the ending of episode 9.
  • Translation Convention: Much like in the OVAs, everyone speaks Japanese despite Luna Nova having students from all around the world and the school itself being in England. Averted with writing which is all in English.
    • Spoofed when Akko introduces herself to Andrew in episode 6. She first gives her name according to Japanese naming conventions (last name first) before remembering that they're in England and switching to the western method of introduction (first name first).
  • Vacation Episode: Episode 16 has Akko, Sucy and Lotte visiting Lotte's parents in her Finnish hometown. While there Akko still manages to get herself into zany adventures, thwart a dangerous disease and unlock one of the seven Words.
  • Wackyland: Episode 8 consists of this.
  • Waterfall Puke: The reaction of the teacher at the culinary magic exam, when she examined an apple bewitched by Akko through eating.
  • The Weird Sisters: Witches at Luna Nova seem to always be teamed up in groups of three roommates who do almost everything together: Akko, Lotte, Sucy; Diana, Hannah, Barbara; Amanda, Constanze, Jasminka; Wanagari and her unnamed fellow reporters. Even various background characters tend to appear in recurring trios.
  • Wham Episode:
    • Episode 12 reveals that Akko's desire to become the next Shiny Chariot may be doomed to failure, as her constant violations of Luna Nova's current traditions means that she's been outright banned from even participating in the competition for the title of Moonlight Witch, unless there's some change.
    • Episode 15: Croix reveals her true colors by manipulating Luna Nova's magical creatures into a mass strike, crippling the school and effectively allowing her to take control with her machines. Also, Ursula tells the true nature of the Shiny Rod and Grand Triskelion to Akko.
    • Episode 19: Diana drops out of Luna Nova in order to stop her aunt from destroying her family's name, forfeiting her claim to the Moonlight Witch title and leaving the title's future uncertain.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: What happened to that Giant squirrel in episode 10?
  • Words Can Break My Bones: The seven Arcturus words, when spoken by a wielder of the Shiny Rod, can undo the seal on the Grand Triskelion.

    The OVAs 
  • Academy of Adventure: Luna Nova, a European school for witches. Bonus points for having a vast labyrinth filled with monsters and treasures right underneath it.
  • Accidental Pun: When the minotaur appears, Hannah and Barbara try to tell Diana that it's behind her (ushiro) but only manage to stammer out ushi (cow). In English, they just refer to the minotaur as a "bull".
  • The Ace: Diana, an extremely powerful witch who never shirks responsibility or backs down from a fight.
  • Admiring the Abomination: When the giant reveals its full self in Enchanted Parade, Akko's reaction isn't freaking out but rather "Whoa, this is a giant...?"
  • Adults Are Useless: Averted. While Akko's teacher is the only one present to deal with the dragon problem, she promptly reacts in a meaningful way by re-barring the dungeon door. When students attack it she cries to stop, showing she knows about the dragon's ability to eat magic. When the students' aggressive magics make the dragon so powerful that it destroys the door, she orders the evacuation of the building and uses herself as bait to allow the students to reach safety. She does it again in Enchanted Parade by fooling the parade crowd that the battle against the giant is all an elaborate stage show to prevent a mass panic.
  • All There in the Manual: The Manga acts as a prequel to the show — Akko's first day at Luna Nova — and gives a bit of extra information such as Akko's full name and the names of Diana's Girl Posse.
  • All Part of the Show: In Enchanted Parade Professor Ursula manages to make the town believe a giant is all a part of Akko's witch parade by announcing it like a hero show.
  • Apathetic Citizens: In Enchanted Parade, when the group of witch-hating bullies that had attacked Akko and co. earlier on return and sabotage the parade, no one lifts a hand to stop them.
  • Art Nouveau: The series has this as a definite design theme, from promotional work to in-series posters.
  • Art Shift: In the second OVA the scene turns for a couple of seconds into an 8-bit Shoot 'em Up video game featuring a witch on her broom. It's revealed to be a game that Constanze is playing on her laptop/robot familiar. The scene goes by so fast that one can barely process it. Also, the representation of how Luna Nova's magic stone works has a simpler style than the regular animation.
  • Aside Glance: The dragon looks at the camera and gives us an Oh, Crap! face before blowing up.
  • Asleep in Class: Akko is shown doing this the first time we see her at school. The teacher deals with it by using a spell to slam her head onto her book.
  • Beauty Equals Goodness: While monsters aside there are no real villains in this series, the Mayor is a diminutive caricature of a man with an ego several times his own size and directly responsible for the giant's awakening.
  • Big Damn Heroes:
    • Akko and her friends arrive just in time to save Diana and her posse from a certain death by angry minotaur, and Diana later returns the favour by saving Akko from certain death by falling from great height.
    • In Enchanted Parade, Lotte and Sucy return in time to save the day when things are looking bleak.
  • Big Eater: Jasminka, the Fat Girl with Girlish Pigtails, is never seen without a snack. In fact, she got recruited for the parade team as punishment for stealing food (this is changed to eating in class for the English dub).
  • Black Bead Eyes: A few of the student extras have them.
  • Brutal Honesty: Sucy is shamelessly blunt.
  • Bucket Helmet: After awakening the dragon, Sucy and Lotte emerge from a pile of debris wearing a cauldron and a pot, respectively.
  • Bullying a Dragon: Diana's two friends with a literal dragon. As the trope implies, it doesn't go too well for them.
  • But for Me, It Was Tuesday: Played for Laughs in Enchanted Parade, Akko and co. have been brought before the headmistress so many times they have lost count, and when trying to recall the actual reasons, Sucy and Akko start admitting things they haven't actually been punished for.
  • Cast of Snowflakes: Each of Akko's classmates are individually recognizable, even from a distance.
  • Catapult to Glory: In Enchanted Parade, Akko gets into a jury-rigged catapult (due to being unable to fly a broom) and launches herself onto the unsealed rock monster to try and free Thomas from its grasp.
  • Chekhov's Gun:
    • The Shiny Rod.
    • The Luna Lana spell and Lotte's ancestral song in The Enchanted Parade.
  • Chekhov's Gunman:
    • Extremely subtle, to the point where it's more of a Rewatch Bonus. In the end of the film Akko asks Diana how she knows about Shiny Chariot's attack, Shiny Arc. Now go back to the very beginning of the film and look closely at the first crowd shot. A young Diana is seen in the audience for Shiny Chariot's show.
    • There's also Professor Ursula. She's first shown to be listening in when Akko and Diana are arguing about Shiny Chariot, and at the end she's revealed to be Shiny Chariot herself.
  • Chekhov's Skill: During her show, Shiny Chariot destroys a monster she materializes by aiming into its mouth so that it swallows the blast and explodes. At the end, Akko destroys a dragon by doing the same thing.
  • Christmas Cake: The dungeon crawl teacher seems to have a complex about this as she is leading the dragon away. (Dragon turns to chase Akko and company, ignoring her).
    Sensei: "Is it because they're younger?"
  • Closet Geek: Diana is a lot more knowledgeable of Shiny Chariot than someone who professes to hate her should be.
  • Crush Blush: Thomas, the ringleader of the band of kids who harass the witches, sports some of this when he's rescued by Diana in The Enchanted Parade.
  • Cute Witch: A whole school of them in fact.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Sucy.
  • Determinator: Akko is determined to be a great witch like Shiny Chariot, even though she's not from a wizarding family and lacks basic skills that all witches should have, not to mention that Shiny Chariot isn't viewed favourably in the wizarding community. In the end, her faith in Shiny Chariot allows her to defeat the dragon by using the Shiny Rod just like Chariot did in her stage shows.
  • Die Laughing: In Enchanted Parade, Akko and Sucy during class manage to make a giant mushroom monster that releases a type of gas that causes those who breathe it in to collapse in laughter. Later Sucy, when discussing how to make the Parade more enjoyable, suggests using an army of them on the town. The idea is rejected as bio-terrorism.
  • Disaster Dominoes: In Enchanted Parade, Akko throws a broomstick in frustration... which knocks over the other broomsticks, which leads to the accidental premature activation of the float.
  • Dissonant Serenity: Sucy, when confronting the Minotaur.
  • Dude, Where's My Respect?: Despite saving the whole school from a giant magic-eating dragon that nearly consumed their sorcerer's stone, by the time of Enchanted Parade, Akko and her friends are back to being the unpopular weirdos... and are on the verge of being expelled for causing relatively minor problems.
  • Dungeon Crawling: Much of the first installment's action takes place during a test that involves this, in which the students have to traverse a series of dungeons while collecting rare treasures and dealing with monsters.
  • Energy Absorption: Dragons grow bigger and nastier the more magic is used on them.
  • Eye Glasses: Lotte.
  • Eyes Always Shut: Jasminka in Enchanted Parade is almost always this combined with Perpetual Smiler.
  • Face Palm: Amanda does this in The Enchanted Parade after Akko beans Lotte with her broom.
  • Family Honor: The reason for Diana's holier-than-thou attitude is because she comes from a prestigious clan of magicians, and feels obliged to uphold its greatness.
  • Family-Unfriendly Death: For a few seconds, you can actually see the minotaur melt and the bones seem to be popping out. THEN it turns into a puddle of blood that MELTS THE FLOOR.
  • Fantastic Racism: Non-witches and witches don't get along. The activities in the eponymous Enchanted Parade are recreations of things that happened during now-defunct witch hunts. Akko and the others get into a fight with witch-hating brats.
  • Feed It with Fire: After Diana's party accidentally frees the dragon, they start blasting the creature with reckless abandon. Little do they know, dragons absorb magic...
  • Flat-Earth Atheist: The mayor has shades of this, wanting to tear down a stone monument that legends say act as a seal to a great misfortune. Considering that magic exists in this world, and there is a literal magic school less than a mile away, scoffing at said "misfortune" seems to be incredibly stupid, arrogant, and short-sighted.
  • Flying Broomstick: Knowing how to use one of these is supposed to be an extremely basic skill that all witches learn while growing up, but since Akko's not from a wizarding family she can't fly at all.
  • Fusion Dance: Diana fuses hers, Hannah's, and Barbara's broomsticks into a more powerful one.
  • Gadgeteer Genius: Constanze is a tinkerer who uses her wand as a literal Magic Tool and uses it to create and power various inventions such as a little Robot Buddy or even a laser gun. She's forced to work with the girls for selling technology within school grounds.
  • Genre Blindness: The town mayor decides to bulldoze a seal planted by a witch to make room for a statue of him. Despite the fact that the witch school is nearby, he doesn't stop to ask them if it's real, and blows off the foreman's concerns.
  • Getting Crap Past the Radar: Amanda's mugshot features her Flipping the Bird. It's pixellated in both the original Japanese version and the English dub, but it's still pretty strong for a TV-Y7 rating.
  • Girl Posse: Diana's followers, Hannah and Barbara. They actually seem have worse attitudes than their leader, given how much quicker they are to insult, while Diana's comments lean more towards constructive criticism.
  • Gorgeous Garment Generation: In the climax of their fight against the rock monster from Enchanted Parade, Sucy, Lotte, and Akko's outfits turn into some variation of Shiny Chariot's before they launch their final attack.
  • Gory Discretion Shot: The minotaur's death appears to be graphic, but for most of it, we can only see the girls' expressions.
  • Gratuitous Foreign Language: The incantation for the "Luna Lana" nullification spell, "Ein Sof Ohr", is Hebrew for "infinite light".note 
  • Gravity Is a Harsh Mistress: Akko and Sucy, while flying a broom in tandem to avoid the giant's hands, manage to evade its attacks by rapidly climbing upwards... only to find that the giant has swatted their broom away from them.
  • Hard Work Montage: Akko gets one halfway through Enchanted Parade as she tries to get the Happy Time Project to work.
  • Head Pet: Lotte's fire sprite spends a good deal of time on Lotte's head.
  • Hidden Depths: Diana is, or used to be, a fan of Shiny Chariot's spectacles.
  • I Was Just Passing Through: When Diana saves a falling Akko:
    Diana: No need to thank me. It is my duty to evacuate all students.
  • Ill Girl: Sucy constantly looks sickly and a bit depressed. Must be the vapors from all those potions she cooks up.
  • Inept Mage: Akko, much to her chagrin. She can use magic, but she's not particularly good at it and she's completely unable to fly a broom.
  • Instant Awesome, Just Add Dragons: The dragon itself was more a fearsome menace, but it did lead to Akko using the Shiny Rod for the first time, which was very awesome.
  • Insult Backfire: In Enchanted Parade, after the disastrous trip to town, Diana spots a forlorn Akko and hits her with a "The Reason You Suck" Speech... except that she makes the mistake of mentioning Shiny Chariot, which ends up getting Akko's spirits up instead.
  • Jerkass: Both Akko and Diana have shades of this for different reasons:
    • Akko is of the Jerkass Hero varient. She genuinely means well but tends to place her own feelings above those of her friends and not even consider that what she's doing is wrong or potentially dangerous.
    • In Diana's case, she's pretty haughty, and looks down on muggle-born witches, such as Akko. She is also pretty rude to her two followers, Hannah and Barbara, when she calls them out for being being afraid in the dungeon, saying that because they are witches, they should be the ones instilling fear instead.
  • Killer Rabbit: Sealed in an iron maiden deep within the school's dungeons, there's this lizard-looking thing. Sure, it's bigger than your average lizard, and it's got nasty-looking fangs, but isn't it a little tiny for a monster found so deep within the dungeon? Well, let's put it that way: for the sake of everything holy, do not use magic on it.
  • Left the Background Music On: Near the end of Enchanted Parade, the main dramatic theme starts playing, and then switches to being broadcast by the speakers on their parade float.
  • Lighter and Softer: Compared to other Gainax/Trigger works. This isn't a bad thing, though.
  • Living Gasbag: The monstrous whale-like leviathan conjured and then slain by Shiny Chariot as part of her show gives this impression, considering that it's very large and fat and yet somehow manages to fly with no apparent means to do so.
  • A Load of Bull: The girls confront a minotaur during their dungeon test. Sucy instantly kills it with one of her potions.
  • Losing the Team Spirit: In Enchanted Parade, after Akko accidentally tears in half Lotte's ancestral music scroll, Lotte gets pissed off and goes her own way, and Akko splits from Sucy too. Noticeably, for the next few parts, it's the new girls who give Akko help, while Lotte and Sucy are nowhere to be seen.
  • Magic Wand: All the witches have one, though Shiny Chariot uses her Shiny Rod.
  • Magical Girl: Shiny Chariot has elements of this. Interestingly, while loved by the Muggles of the setting, she and this archetype is absolutely reviled by most of the magic community who think she is nothing but a fraud. Apparently, she's not as much of a fraud as they think.
  • Magicians Are Wizards: Shiny Chariot is hated by most magic practitioners for spreading "the wrong idea about magic", namely grandiose "stage magic" augmented by many special effects to please the crowds.
  • Magic Skirt: Most noticeable when Akko plummets from the sky on a disobedient broomstick; her skirt just wiggles slightly. She is a witch, so actual magic may be involved.
  • Master Poisoner: Technically Sucy's specialty is potions in general, but the way she's able to instantly kill a huge minotaur with one of her concoctions has her border on this. In Enchanted Parade she keeps reminding Akko that the difference between a medicine and a poison is proportion, something Akko needs to pay more attention to.
  • Meaningful Background Event: You probably won't notice it unless you're looking for it, but take a close look at the crowd shot at the beginning. See the blond girl in a witch's hat?
  • Meganekko: Lotte and Professor Ursula.
  • A Minor Kidroduction: The short starts with a young Akko watching Shiny Chariot's stage show. Diana can also be spotted in the very first crowd shot swaying back and forth.
  • Morph Weapon: Shiny Chariot's Shiny Rod can be a Magic Staff, a Flying Broomstick, and an Energy Bow. Akko finds it in the dungeons and is able to use its Energy Bow form to defeat the dragon. The normal wands used by the students and staff also double as broomsticks.
  • Muggles Do It Better: At the academy, the Sorceror's Stone allows the witches to use magic freely. But its effects don't reach all the way out to the nearby town, greatly limiting the amount of magic witches can use, which proves troublesome when Akko and co. go there and get beset by a bunch of witch-hating hooligans.
  • Multinational Team:
    • Akko hails from Japan, Lotte is of Scandinavian descent, and, if her surname is any indication, Sucy is Cebuano.
    • In The Enchanted Parade, they team up with Luna Nova's misfits, Irish-American Amanda, German Constanze (or judging by the family name, more likely Austrian), and Russian (or judging by her family name, maybe Ukrainian) Jasminka.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: Diana is very distraught after freeing the dragon from its prison, and tries to take care of it herself, but it gets out of the dungeon before she catches up to it.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero!:
    • Diana, in her search for more treasures, breaks a magical seal. The other witches inadvertently make things worse as well.
    • Akko really is her own worst enemy. In Enchanted Parade, she rattles off a number of variations on "I mean no harm" after she accidentally tears Lotte's ancestral music scroll in half and drives a wedge between herself and the rest with her refusal to compromise. Her aggressive fangirling of Shiny Chariot has clearly scuttled potential friendships with other students, Diana most of all.
  • No Sell:
    • The dragon takes it to a whole new level.
    • Diana utilizing the swords against the Minotaur. All it seems to do is anger it some more.
  • O.O.C. Is Serious Business: In Enchanted Parade, after Akko accidentally tears Lotte's ancestral music scroll in half, Lotte gets visibly angry. Sucy points out how pissed off she must be for the normally gentle girl to get mad.
  • Ocular Gushers: Akko does this in Enchanted Parade after Lotte returns for her.
  • Oh, Crap!:
    • The dragon's expression before being blown up from the inside by Akko's Shiny Arc attack,
    • Akko makes quite a few of these, all while falling, on three separate occasions.
    • Diana has two noteworthy ones in the first short—one when she realizes the minotaur is behind her, the other when she realizes Hannah and Barbara are unintentionally making the dragon absorb energy right when it's too late.
  • The Ojou: Diana certainly carries herself as such.
  • One-Gender School: The witch's school is naturally girls-only.
  • Our Dragons Are Different: They grow more and more powerful the more magic you dish out on them and they are not very aggressive, just hungry for magic.
    • Our Giants Are Different: The enemy of Enchanted Parade is called a giant, it's incredibly powerful and able to turn objects into monsters as well as fuse them to itself to create armour, and unlike the dragon cannot be destroyed, only resealed.
  • Panty Shot: Averted, despite the "flying lesson" sequence and being a Trigger show. In the moments where they should be visible, the particular character's legs don't appear to attach to anything under her skirt.
  • Peek-a-Bangs: Sucy.
  • Perpetual Frowner: Constanze from Enchanted Parade is almost always frowning.
  • Phenotype Stereotype: Largely averted. The show does a good job of averting the usual traits kids from different nationalities may have, somewhat helped by the fact that the series takes place in a European witch school. For example, the Russian (or, probably, Ukrainian from her name) Jasminka doesn't have the nose that regular Russian and other Slavic characters would have, the American isn't a blonde, and does Sucy look mucho Filippina to anyone?
  • Poison Is Corrosive: Enough to melt flesh and stone alike.
  • Power Glows: Chariot's Shiny Rod.
  • Power Trio: Seems to be the norm at Luna Nova. Akko/Lotte/Sucy are the protagonists, with Diana/Hannah/Barbara acting as their rivals and Amanda/Constanze/Jazminka acting as a secondary trio in Enchanted Parade.
  • Proud Warrior Race Guy: Diana is very annoyed that Hannah and Barbara spend the entire Dungeon Crawl clinging to each other begging Diana to go back, and tells them that witches shouldn't be afraid, that they should be the ones feared. She tries to get the witch parade cancelled in the second movie because she finds the whole thing offensive to witches.
  • Reconstruction: Of the Cute Witch genre.
  • Red and Black and Evil All Over: The dragon.
  • The Reveal: Professor Ursula is a retired Shiny Chariot.
  • The Rival: Diana is this for Akko.
  • Sealed Evil in a Can:
    • The dragon. It is stored in the level under the last level reachable by normal means; it is trapped in a torture device infamous for drinking the blood of hundreds of witches, and said device is covered with seals to keep it in... what can possibly go wrong?
    • The Giant in Enchanted Parade is sealed in rocks by Jennifer the Witch. The rocks are later revealed to not be rocks at all but the giant's hand, with the rest of him buried under the town.
  • Scary Shiny Glasses: Lotte's specs do this when she's angry.
  • She's Got Legs: Amanda in Enchanted Parade, being a dancer/thief, has nice legs and shows them off frequently.
  • Slasher Smile: Sucy briefly sports one when she successfully kills the minotaur with one of her potions.
  • Storm of Blades: Diana uses this in an attempt to kill the minotaur, but all that does is piss it off even more.
  • Tempting Fate: In Enchanted Parade, Professor Ursula really didn't have to say "I just hope nothing bad happens..."
  • There Is No Kill Like Overkill: Sucy's potion to defeat the minotaur. It doesn't just kill the beast, it liquefies him. And then the mass of minotaur goop melts through the floor, creating a tunnel to the level below.
    "The formula might have been a bit too strong."
  • Translation Convention: All the on-screen text is in English, heavily implying all the characters, Akko included, speak it. Given the clearly international student body, English fluency could be an entrance requirement (or Translator Microbes are in full effect). This is enforced with the fact none of the characters, including Akko, use honorifics with the obvious exception of sensei (Professor).
    • The chalkboard map seen in Akko's Magic History class (about 2:50 in) shows the location of Luna Nova Academy to be roughly in or near Bath, Somerset; Akko uses a Union Flag as an improvised parachute in Enchanted Parade; a tie-in comic name-drops Glastonbury as Luna Nova's mailing address.
    • The movie heavily implies Akko had to learn English to enter the academy, as she also writes in that language, even for herself. There's also the fact the German Constanze does not speak, implying she doesn't know "English" in-universe. and Jasminka speaks in a simpleton tone of voice, propably implying she's not very fluent on English either.
  • Trick Arrow: Shiny Chariot's signature spell "Shiny Arc" is an arrow that, when fired into a monster's maw, makes the creature bloat and spectacularly explode in a shower of fireworks. It works on otherwise magic-proof dragons.
  • Tsundere: Diana, especially when it comes to Akko.
  • Untranslated Title: The Chilean Spanish dub keeps the original English names in both the original film and the sequel. The dub also keeps the same pronunciation of all the foreign names. For example, Akko Kagari's name is pronounced the Japanese way, and Diana Cavendis's name is pronounced the same way in English (Dye-ana), rather than phonetically in Spanish (Dee-ana).
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: While Sucy and Akko are friends, Akko's Hot-Blooded-ness annoys Sucy, who likewise uses Akko as an ill-fated guinea pig for her potions.
  • Waterfall Puke: One member of Diana's Girl Posse is visibly (though very briefly) shown to be throwing up after seeing the effects of Sucy's potion on the minotaur.
  • Wave-Motion Tuning Fork: The wands have this appearance, with spells coming out from between the prongs.
  • Witch Classic: Clothes? Check. Broom? Check. Magic? CHECK!!
  • Witch Hunt: The eponymous Witch Parade of the Enchanted Parade is a reenactment of old witch trials (which were quite rare in England, the show's apparent setting), with said witches being "volunteers" from Luna Nova. The unlucky witches are paraded before the townsfolk to be pelted with tomatoes, dunked in a pool, and rolled in barrels all while wearing silly fake noses. Small wonder the whole event has become a disciplinary measure. Needless to say Akko is horrified; Diana wants to get the tradition ended altogether.
  • Wizarding School: Luna Nova, an all-girl Witch school.
  • Your Magic's No Good Here: The characters note that their magic only really works in Luna Nova due to the Sorcerer's Stone collectively powering all magical items. Although it is possible to use magic outside of school grounds, regular magic wands lack the capacity to be used for prolonged periods of time. Akko puts two and two together and decides to use the Shiny Rod as a battery in The Enchanted Parade.
  • Youthful Freckles: Lotte has a few.

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