"If you had magic, what would you do?"
Toei Animation's Cute Witch Cash Cow Franchise
from 1999 to 2003, spanning four year-long television series and one OVA
(Ojamajo being a portmanteau
of "ojama", meaning a hindrance and "majo", meaning witch) tells the story of Doremi Harukaze, the self-proclaimed "unluckiest pretty girl in the whole world
", who dreams of becoming a witch just like in the stories she reads. One day she stumbles across a mysterious shop run by an old woman who fits the profile of a witch to a tee. Doremi calls her out on it, and suddenly the woman transforms into an ugly little frog thing: turns out she really was
a witch, and this is what happens when a human correctly identifies one.
The ex-witch, Majo Rika, takes her on as an apprentice witch so that Doremi can eventually gain enough magical power to change her back. The thing is, Doremi is horrible
when it comes to learning the trade, which leads to Majo Rika branding her an ojamajo. Not soon afterwards, Doremi's two friends Hazuki Fujiwara
and Aiko Senoo
get in on the act, and in the latter half of the series, Onpu Segawa
- another apprentice witch who uses magic for selfish reasons- turns up as an antagonist of sorts.
In the second series (Ojamajo Doremi # (Sharp)
), Onpu has reformed
and Doremi gains a magical "daughter" called Hana that she has to raise for one year
. The third series (Mo~tto! Ojamajo Doremi
) introduces American witch apprentice Momoko Asuka to help the group pass a test to become formal witches. This test involves turning their shop into a bakery for the season. The fourth and final television series (Ojamajo Doremi Dokka~n!
) has Hana force-grow herself
to the same age as Doremi so she can attend school with her "mommy". An OVA followed (Ojamajo Doremi Na-i-sho
) that was set during Mo~tto
and focused on various secrets held by the main characters.
The franchise was your standard Magical Girl
affair, though there was very little evil-fighting. The series was instead driven by the characters and their development not only as Cute Witches
but as people. Admittedly, it suffers from a lot of Filler
, and depending on how cynical you are
, you could consider every series after the first to be Post Script Seasons
. But it was
a massively popular series in Japan and has its fair share of high points. Notably, it's the second longest Magical Girl
series to date (behind Pretty Cure
), but unlike Pretty Cure
, the series takes place in only one continuity.
The series has been dubbed into several languages and released in multiple countries under the name Magical DoReMi
. In America it was licensed by 4Kids
, becoming the first version not
to call the main character "Doremi" (instead they called her Do
rie, turning Hazuki and Aiko into Re
anne and Mi
rabelle respectively to retain the pun in the title). While the first twenty-six episodes were aired on television, the last twenty-five were only available online.
In 2011, Kodansha began publishing a series of Light Novel
trilogies under the title Ojamajo Doremi 16
. The novels were penned by Midori Kuriyama, the series' main episode writer, with illustrations provided by Yoshihiko Umakoshi, the original series' character designer. The story take place years after the ending of the original anime series, where Doremi is now a high school student. The stories are written in the same episodic format as the television series, dealing with problems in both Doremi's personal life and affairs in the Witch World. After the release of Ojamajo Doremi 16 ~Come On!~
, the novel continued on as a second trilogy titled Ojamajo Doremi 17
This series has a character sheet.
And now it has a recap
in the works.
This series contains examples of:
open/close all folders
- Edutainment: Has shades of this, particularly Motto. Also, in a press release, 4Kids Entertainment pitched the show as such.
- Eldritch Location: The Witch World and, by definition, The Wizard World.
- Escort Mission: What Sharp essentially was. Even more so after episode 22
- The Evil Genius: Fujio, who is shown to be the most intelligent of the FLAT4 and is the one taking notes of almost everything that's going on around him. Subverted after his Heel-Face Turn.
- Exact Words: Typically during the Level 1 exam. The proctors say that one has to use magic to help someone in the human world and receive a "thank you" in return...all without getting caught. They never say how the thanks is received, or from whom you need to get the thanks from.
- In Series 1, the girls helped a fox cub out and got a thank you from it in its own language. It was accepted.
- In Dokkan for both Pop's and Hana's exams, the former used magic to conjure a wind to protect a class project from the rain; the class thanked the wind...which was an indirect thanks to Pop, so she passed. On the other hand, Hana didn't use magic and got thanks...and Mota and Motamota said she failed as a result, but are taking it up with with the Senate.
- Eye Catch: Varied wildly from season to season and even had separate parts to them.
- S1: The first one had the fairies bouncing on the register until Dodo accidentally slammed Majo Rika followed by them producing cards of their respective owners. The second one showed the girls scanning various items with Pop scanning Majo Rika.
- Sharp: The first one showed the Ojamajos using their calls for various activities only for Pop to steal one of them; she is then seen talking with her boyfriends while Doremi, the owner of the stolen call, looks for it. The second one showed Doremi allowing the fairies into her patraine call followed by the fairies going into their teenage forms within the Patraine laptop.
- Face-Heel Turn: Oyajide in Sharp. Ojijide warns him that the Wizard world is dying and that they need Hana's magic to save it. He then offers him a Firend Or Idol Decision as a last resort, which overrides any morality he had and gets the turn under way.
- The Faceless: The Queen of the Witches kept her face hidden beneath a veil at all times until episode 50 of Dokkan.
- The Big Bad too, arguably. Until the Motto finale.
- Fake Band: The Maho Dou, who sing the opening theme songs. Later on, the main girls form an in-show band to record a song together.
- Fantastic Racism: During Pao's debut, a number of grey elephants wanted nothing to do with him since he was different. Does This Remind You of Anything?
- Some Witches have some disdain for humans as well.
- Five-Bad Band: Oyajide and the Wizards during Sharp. Averted after their collective Heel-Face Turn.
- Flanderization: Happens to Momoko regarding her Cloud Cuckoo Lander tendencies during Dokkan.
- Happens to Doremi from time to time regarding to her ditzy and clueless tendencies in the 4Kids dub.
- Flying Broomstick: Subverted for any Witch who was turned into a Witch Frog.
- Food Porn: Never watch Motto! on an empty stomach.
- Four Girl Ensemble: For the first two series:
- The naive one: Doremi
- The mannish one: Aiko
- The sexy one: Pop, who is eventually replaced by Onpu by Sharp
- The wild card: Hazuki
- Frilly Upgrade: Avoids this for the most part by giving the cast an entirely new wardrobe in each season. In Motto, their uniforms were even reversible! Sharp plays this straight with the Royal Patraine.
- Fun with Foreign Languages
- Gadgeteer Genius: Majo Toron, during her only appearance, is confirmed to have invented the girls' current porons and is later shown to have made a number of working gadgets. It appears she zigzags between Gadgeteer Genuis and Bungling Inventor...
- Genki Girl: Doremi, Momoko and 11-year-old Hana-chan.
- Genre Savvy: Aiko, primarily in the first part of the first series. Onpu starts off and remains Genre Savvy throughout the series.
- Get A Hold Of Yourself, Girl!: Doremi's mother has such a moment when Doremi blames herself for getting Hana sick.
- Giving Someone the Pointer Finger: Every time a witch is found out...
- The Glorious War of Sisterly Rivalry: Plenty between Doremi and Pop. Pop generally finds Doremi immature and irresponsible, and Doremi can't stand her Deadpan Snarker moments. However, Pop secretly admires Doremi and will watch out for her when things get tough.
- Gratuitous English: Alexander T. Oyajide. Leon's occasion of habitually throwing English in his speech got Lampshaded by Aiko:
Aiko: "Me, me, me, me!" Would you quit it with your half-hearted English?!
- Gray and Grey Morality: All of the characters are portrayed in a realistic manner and the villains all have credible excuses to be doing what they're doing.
- To drive the point home, Doremi can be relatively selfish, greedy, and self-centered. On the other hand, she has shown a great many number of moments when she was compassionate and pure hearted and generally wanting to do the right thing no matter what.
- A second example is Majo Tourbillon. Her goal is to prevent contact between the worlds by any means necessary and is even willing to hurt children to ensure it. However, she wants to do this so as to prevent other witches from feeling the same unbearable pain she felt when she lost her husband to an accident and her son to old age and her grand children to their own paths.
- Hair Antennae: The FLAT 4 use this to cast magic. It functions as Idiot Hair most of time.
- He Didn't Make It: Or rather, she: poor Non-chan succumbs to her cancer at the end of Naisho episode 12.
- Healing Magic Is the Hardest: Using magic to heal is a forbidden technique that comes at cost of magic user's own health. See Magic A Is Magic A below.
- The Heart: Momoko, in addition to being Thechick. Doremi as well in addition to her being The Leader and The Heroine since she's the one who keeps the group together.
- Heavy Sleeper: Pop. Seriously. Do not try to wake her up.
- Heel-Face Turn: Onpu, Oyajide; even Tamaki becomes a bit less of a Jerk Ass.
- Heroic BSOD: A few throughout the series.
- Momoko suffers one when she was called out by the other Ojamajos for letting Hana get sick during Motto.
- Doremi in the Grand Finale. Quite literally the biggest one on the show at that!
- Heroic Sacrifice: All the girls but Pop willingly risk being put into a millenia-long slumber to get the Love Supreme flower needed to save Hana's life in the finale of Sharp. Doremi barely succeeds, but is also put under. Thankfully, Hana's first word ("MAMA!") was strong enough to wake them.
- Hidden Elf Village: Majo Kai (and by extension Mahoutsukai Kai) is concealed from the humans by means of pretty much being in a different dimension. Justified in this case since the Witches legitimately fear and have distrust of humans (the former being because of the Big Bad's curse and the latter being because some humans took advantage of Witches back when the curse wasn't around).
- One episode had a straighter example in the form of El Dorado. To elaborate, this El Dorado was created when a group of Witches decided to live secluded on Earth and cast aside their magic. Subverted somewhat in that these Witches are welcoming to those who could actually find it ("somewhat" meaning that the only ones shown to have found it were either Witches or Witch Apprentices themselves; in short, elves finding a hidden elf village).
- The High Queen: The Queen of the Witch World.
- Hikikomori: The reason Kayoko hasn't been going to school. She gets over it in the Christmas Episode after two separate episodes of progress in Motto!.
- Honest Axe: Doremi pulls this on Miyamoto in Na-i-sho episode 8 after he accidentally breaks Sachiko's recorder.
- Huge Schoolgirl: Naomi Okuyama is an eight-year-old version of this trope.
- Humans Are Bastards: Some Witches have this view of humans. It had a greater majority during flashbacks, where it was mentioned that some humans took advantage of Witches to get what they wanted and showed ungratefulness. This view was one reason the Witch World cut its ties to the Human World. It continues to this day, with some Witches still claiming that humans are greedy enough to take advantage of magic if ever given the chance.
- Humans Are Special: Some Witches have this view of humans. For one reason or another, when a human makes something, there is something in it that magic can never reproduce, no matter how hard anyone tries. Finally, the Big Bad made it to where if a human (and only a human) were to identify a Witch, the curse would be triggered.
- I Never Got Any Letters: Aiko discovers that her mom has made several attempts to contact her in the past after her parents' divorce, but never received any of the letters she sent. Turns out that all of her letters were collected and hidden by her father, making Aiko very upset.
- Idiot Hair: Too many to count.
- Idol Singer: Onpu
- If It Tastes Bad, It Must Be Good for You: This applies to the case of Hana, who hates vegetables, but must eat them to restore her magical energy.
- Ill Girl: Shiori Nakayama, Kayoko Nagato and Littlest Cancer Patient Nozomi.
- Image Song: The songs used could double as a Crowning Music of Awesome.
- I Need You Stronger: Akatsuki allowed the girls to transform into Royal Patraine to make the final fight fair. Unfortunately, the FLAT4 didn't really have to worry about losing anyway.
- Incredibly Lame Pun: These were what the SOS Trio used as jokes, to everyone's dismay. Oddly, only Hazuki found them funny.
- Instant Awesome, Just Add Mecha: One episode of Motto involved Doremi turning into a Humongous Mecha in one of Nobuko's and Miho's mangas.
- Insult Backfire: "Ojamajo" was originally used by Majo Rika to refer to the girls clumsiness and incompetence. By season 2, the girls took it as meaning "apprentices" instead.
- Jumped at the Call: Doremi's reaction when Majo Rika and Lala tell her she must become a witch is...
- Kansai Regional Accent: Aiko, born and raised in Osaka.
- The Lancer: Aiko was this in the first series before Onpu performed her Heel-Face Turn. By the beginning of Sharp, Onpu was all but The Lancer from then on, though Aiko occasionally lapses back into the role.
- Late-Arrival Spoiler: Hana becoming a witch apprentice is technically a surprise spoiler to newcomers who haven't seen the show, yet Dokka~n! makes this unavoidable due to its First Episode Spoiler. Toei doesn't help this either in since they throw her image around Dokka~n! promotions and merchandise like free candy.
- Laugh Themselves Sick: Hazuki always laughs uncontrollably whenever the SOS Trio make a joke. Momoko gets this way about Toyoken too.
- Light Novels: Ojamajo Doremi 16 and Ojamajo Doremi 17.
- List Song: Sweet Song ABC (in alphabetical order, even!) and Oh! Yasai Samba
- The Little Shop That Wasn't There Yesterday: Used by Oyajide during episode 22 of Sharp. Onpu lampshades it.
- Littlest Cancer Patient: Nozomi aka Non-chan. And uncommonly for the trope, she actually does die.
- Loads and Loads of Characters: And they all have their own page.
- Lonely Rich Kid: Hazuki, Tamaki to some degree
- Long Lived: The witches are capable of dying even though their lifespans are longer than humans, notable examples being Majo Monroe and Majo Clara.
- Love Confession: Doremi wants to give one to Igarashi-sempai, but at the end of the series someone confesses to her!
Kotake: Well, yeah it's true you're a total klutz, but I...I...well to say it, everyone here loves you!
- Kimitaka also confesses to Pop before he moves away.
- The Love Slap of Epiphany: In one episode, Reika wants to be slapped because it's a proof of love, and doesn't stop escalating her misbehaving until she gets her wish.
- Love Triangle: Somehow happened with both Doremi and Hazuki. In the latter case, it's clearly one-sided from Fujio to Hazuki but played with in the former as both Kotake and Akatsuki's focus episode(s) with Doremi are in different seasons. In the end Doremi chooses Kotake.
- Luke, You Are My Father: Faami, from the final episode of Naisho, is Doremi's granddaughter.
- Magic A Is Magic A: Magic can pretty much do anything without consequence as long as you're powerful enough, except for a small number of forbidden acts which are defined very early on: revival from the dead, healing, and Mind Control.
- Magical Incantation: Each girl has their own specific magic spell for common magic as well as a variant for casting Magical Stage. The 4Kids dub ended up creating unnecessary work for themselves by ditching the standard "Incantation+What I Want+Appear" formula by having the girls create rhymes on the spot.
- Magic Wand: An odd variant: all the Porons used in the series are actually musical instruments from the Witch World, but not used via Magic Music.
- Some Witches use the more generic variety.
- Mama Bear: All the girls in Sharp, especially Doremi in the last few episodes.
- Maternally Challenged: Are little girls really ready to take care of a newborn?
- Played straight with a vengeance in Motto! Ojamajo Doremi episode 32. Momoko works her hardest to become a "Mama" for Hana-chan (she wanted Hana to treat her the same as she did the more experienced Ojamajos), but not only does she repeatedly have trouble, she accidentally puts Hana's life in danger by letting her eat too much pudding and giving her a stomachache. Aiko, on behalf of all the Ojamajos, threatens to never let Momoko near Hana again, sending Momoko into a Heroic BSOD. It took a pep talk from Onpu to get Momoko's motivation back.
- May I Borrow a Cup of Sugar?: Aiko was under the impression that her mother had remarried after seeing her with a baby. This gives her the push to convince her father to do the same when he gets set up on a date with his boss' daughter. Later, when Aiko spies on her mother again, she sees a neighbor of her mother visiting her to borrow MSG (sugar in the dub version) and finds out that the baby was actually the neighbor's.
- Meaningful Name: Hana in Japanese means flower (justified because it was Doremi who named her), and Tourbillon in French means spiral.
- Mid-Season Upgrade: Twice. The first time was during S1 with an upgrade to their porons. The second, which occurred during Sharp, gave the Royal Patraine, which was only used when Oyajide kidnapped Hana-chan and when Majo Tourbillon threatened Hana-chan's life at the end of Sharp.
- Mind Screw: Onpu has a Mind Screw Character Development episode in Na-i-sho when she recounts what it really means to be herself in spite of her Idol Singer career, where she has to take on roles and display a public image that is not exactly who she really is.
- Mordor: * The Wizard World is a bleak, dark, and, as described by Ojijide, an infertile wasteland. It is so inhospitable that the Wizards themselves have become a Dying Race (only 30 of the remain!) and hatch a plot to start a war with the Witches so they could regain their lost land and survive. It wasn't always like that; it only turned into this barren wasteland after the previous King of the Wizard World lost a good deal of land to a previous Queen of the Witch World in a game of cards. The Wizard World is restored to its former glory by the current Witch Queen after the current Wizard King expresses remorse for his and his people's actions. Today, it is very much an aversion of this trope.
- More Than Mind Control: Some of the cursed brambles worked this way: The curses they cast to make their victims cross the Despair Event Horizon invoked things that were genuine issues or insecurities for said victims (Majo Ume and Majo Rika feeling depressed regarding being Witch Frogs and the possibility of never returning to normal and Tamaki via her insecurity about being a normal school girl upon graduating elementary).
- Mukokuseki: Usually played straight, but there are a few exceptions. In the episode where Momoko receives a video letter from her Black Best Friend Beth in New York, Beth's new friend Sachiko is drawn with narrower eyes to highlight the racial differences between the two girls.
- Mundane Utility: Use your awesome magical powers to... bake. Subverted when they decide to take care of Hana without magic.
- Named After Someone You Love: George, Majo Tourbillon's husband, made a cake named after her called "Tourbillon My Love".
- Names to Run Away From Really Fast: Majo Tourbillon.
- New Powers as the Plot Demands: Played with. The High Queen usually gives the girls new powers in order to help them with the current task at hand, such as aiding them in using Royal Patraine when they're not together, extracting Bad Cards, etc.
- New Transfer Student: Aiko, Onpu, and Momoko. (And Hana-chan, technically.)
- No Good Deed Goes Unpunished: Doremi especially, but the main things that come to mind are the first two season finales when they have to save Onpu and then save Hana, respectively.
- Noblewoman's Laugh: Reika Tamaki, naturally.
- Nobody Poops: Averted at least twice, with Pop (a Potty Failure) and Pao-chan (poops out the jewels he makes — sound familiar?).
- Hana-chan, as a baby, averts this, too.
- Non-Serial Movie: Completely averted in the Sharp movie (which takes place right before episode 40), but the Motto movie's very vague (though it ties in with the series).
- Odango: Doremi, and HUGE ones at rate.
- Off Model: Ojamajo Doremi suffers notoriously from this, especially during Motto! and Dokkan! If the episode doesn't consist of a magical power-up, or isn't extremely emotional, you can count on some very awful animation.
- Hazuki gets this pretty bad, as she is gradually Demoted to Extra. Even in the first season, however, there are two notable instances. One where she walks into a room and has no legs, and another where her and a side character switch eye colors.
- And, especially later in the show, hands get increasingly more frequently drawn as just stumps or balls. Although one could argue that this is just stylization, the fact that gets more common, along with increasing off-model-ness, shows otherwise. Again, Hazuki gets the worst of it (along with her glasses almost permanentally falling into Opaque Lenses territory), especially since she is usually the farthest in the background.
- To be fair, there are at times where they do it on purpose for comedy.
- Official Couple: Sometime after Ojamajo Doremi Dokka~n!, Hazuki and Yada get together, as they're mentioned to have been dating for quite a while in the Light Novel. Also, Doremi and Kotake get together after having a significant amount of Unresolved Sexual Tension between them.
- The Ojou: Reika, Hazuki to some degree.
- "On the Next Episode of..." Catch Phrase: Ojamajo Doremi has a different one for each season:
- Season 1: "Happiness and luckiness, reach everyone!"
- Season 2 (Sharp): "Thump, thump, tremble, tremble, spin, spin, revolve!" (Or if you're watching the fansub, "Happiness and excitement for everyone!")
- Season 3 (Mo~tto!): "Cheerfulness to cookies! We'll teach you the recipe of magic!"
- Season 4 (Dokka~n!): "Pure, pure dream become big!"
- OVA (Na-i-sho): "You may take notes, but pass them around secretly!" (the word naisho means "secret")
- Opaque Lenses: Hazuki, when she gets scared.
- Overcomplicated Menu Order: In the first series, Doremi gets one of these at her first apprentice witch exam, which is to conjure up whatever is requested by the examiners. She doesn't pass.
- Paper-Thin Disguise: Nice job concealing your true self, Majo Rika... Not to even mention Oyajide!
- Parental Abandonment - Parents as People: Hazuki (parents are caring but always busy), Reika (likewise, but combined with Bumbling Dad factor), Shiori (mom is dead, is a bit distanced from her Overprotective Dad), etc.
- Picky Eater: Hana during Motto! Though later in the season, Hana isn't as responsible for this as she is earlier in the season: the former Witch Queen's predecessor casts a curse on Hana that makes her hate vegetables, resetting a problem that the Ojamajos had previously solved using carrot cake.
- Pet the Dog: Reika is a selfish and shrill Ojou, but an episode in the first season showed her feeling genuinely insecure about her dad's love and taking the local Ill Girl Shiori under her wing.
- Playing Pictionary: This happens to Doremi a lot in the first season. People usually can't tell what her crafts are supposed to resemble because she's such a Terrible Artist. In episode 17, Majo Rika and Lala both guessed wrong as to what Doremi's charm resembled, while in episode 12, Misaki kept insisting Doremi's "panda" charm was a "soccer ball" charm.
- Power Crystal: Used to fuel the girls' magic in the first season.
- Prince and Pauper: In the second episode, Doremi uses magic to swap bodies with Hazuki.
- The Power of Friendship
- Power Trio: Used to be this with Doremi, Hazuki, and Aiko in the first season, with Pop as the Tagalong Kid (even though she still kind of is...) and when Onpu was not officially part of the group. Lampshaded by Onpu occasionally in talk segments of CDs and in Ojamajo Doremi #, where she feels left out because they have been friends longer with each other than with her.
- The Psycho Rangers: The Flat 4 in Sharp: four apprentice wizards that oppose the girls.
- Public Domain Soundtrack: Episode 6 of Na-i-sho uses Tchaikovsky's "Dance of the Sugarplum Fairy".