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If you are looking for the 2013 short film, see this page.

Following the success of Little Witch Academia and its sequel, The Enchanted Parade, Studio Trigger announced the production of a full-length anime series based on the short films directed by Yoh Yoshinari. Little Witch Academia aired from January 8 to June 25, 2017 for a total of 25 episodes.

The series acts as an Continuity Reboot for the franchise and does things a bit differently from the films, but the overarching premise is similar. As a young girl, Atsuko "Akko" Kagari attended a magic show by the witch Shiny Chariot and became enamored with Chariot's ability to spark joy in her audience. Some years later, Akko arrives at Luna Nova, a prestigious academy for witches, in an attempt to follow in her idol's footsteps. But because she was raised in a non-magical family, Akko is out of place in wizarding society and has very little natural aptitude for magic. Also, her idol Chariot is not regarded highly in the magical world, which considered her magic cheap party tricks.

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But in true Plucky Girl fashion, Akko doesn't let these deter her — even if her haughty classmate Diana disapproves, Akko still has her friends Lotte and Sucy and her Cool Teacher Ursula by her side. Things begin to change, however, when Akko discovers Chariot's old wand, the Shiny Rod, which she can use with surprising aptitude even as magic everywhere begins to decline...

The series is available on Netflix. For tropes pertaining to the franchise as a whole, see Little Witch Academia.


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Little Witch Academia provides examples of:

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    A 
  • Aborted Arc: "Orange Submariner" ends with Professor Finnelan in charge of the girls as punishment for them breaking the rules. It's set up like a continuing plotline, perhaps as a Foil to Professor Calistis's more empathetic guidance, but it's never mentioned again.
  • Absentee Actor: Sucy does not appear at all in "Chariot of Fire". Some Studio Trigger employees mentioned that the next episode would have given a clue for the reason why, but it didn't happen. Fan speculation is that she was busy dealing with two intruders at the Sorcerer's Stone.
  • Absurdly Sharp Blade: The first thing the resurrected corpse from "Undead Travelogue" does is to cut in half a tombstone with his centuries-old sword.
  • Accent Adaptation:
    • In the German dub, the word "Chariot" in "Shiny Chariot" is spoken with a French pronunciation, most likely because Chariot's real name is French ("Chariot du Nord").
    • The "T" in Chariot's name is not silent in the French dub.
  • Actor Allusion:
  • Adaptation Expansion: Thanks to not being confined by the runtime limits of the short films, the TV series is able to expand on many aspects of the lore and setting that were left vague or ambiguous in the films, such as the relationship between magic and technology/muggles and witches, the nature of the Shiny Rod, Shiny Chariot's disappearence and the Cavendish family, amongst other things.
  • Adaptation Relationship Overhaul:
    • As a result of Diana getting the Adaptational Nice Guy treatment, her relationship with and attitude towards Akko ends up differing between the films and TV series. In the former, Diana was incredibly antagonistic and hostile towards Akko and tends to frequently mock and berate her throughout both films and while she'll acknowledge Akko's skill on rare occasion (such as the end of The Enchanted Parade), she'll immediately undermine it right afterwards by berating her. In the TV series, however, while she's still not quite fond of Akko at first, she never directly mocks and bullies her like Hannah and Barbara do and her criticisms towards Akko, while incredibly harsh and a bit judgemental and condescending, are more a case of Brutal Honesty and constructive criticism than downright mockery most of the time. Furthermore, while Diana's relationship with Akko never really changes in either of the films, Diana gains more respect and a more supportive and caring attitude towards Akko as the series progress and by the end of the TV series, the two become friends with their rivalry becoming more of a Friendly Rivalry.
    • While Akko and Amanda are still friends in this continuity, they're a bit more vitriolic than they were in The Enchanted Parade and the two butt heads a bit before becoming friends unlike in The Enchanted Parade, where they get along immediately.
  • Adaptational Angst Upgrade: In the series, Akko is far more depressed about her lack of skill in magic. While it was present in the short films, it was more of an annoyance. In the series, it's a plot point and something Akko works extremely hard at trying to overcome (once she realizes she's not in a Legacy of the Chosen story and won't just become an Instant Expert through sheer belief). Furthermore, in the films, Shiny Chariot is an always out-of-reach ideal that Akko strives for, while in the series, she does eventually learn she's Professor Ursula. Unfortunately, this revelation comes together with the knowledge that Chariot (unintentionally) using her shows to gather Dream Energy is part of the reason why she can't use magic well. She takes this about as well as can be expected.
  • Adaptational Early Appearance:
    • Akko gets the Shiny Rod much earlier than she did in the short films. In the TV series, she obtains it before she becomes a student, obtaining it during an accidental detour on the way to Luna Nova, as opposed to the short films, where she was already a student at the school by the time she got the Shiny Rod.
    • Amanda, Constanze and Jasminka didn't make their first appearance in the original continuity until Little Witch Academia: The Enchanted Parade and Akko, Lotte and Sucy were already well established students upon meeting them for the first time in that film. In the TV series, however, they appear as early as "Starting Over" via an Early-Bird Cameo and the main trio were new students when they meet them for the first time in "Don't Stop Me Now". This is obviously thanks to the fact that they're already established characters by the TV series (whereas The Enchanted Parade was their official debut), allowing them to be integrated from the start.
  • Adaptational Jerkass:
    • Sucy is much more cruel toward and exploitative of Akko and Lotte in the anime, even using them as a sacrifice for a gigantic deadly monster. Though in the Teri Terio manga released a few years prior, Sucy was pretty mean to Akko when they first met, including telling her to go pull a deadly mandrake out of a pot.note 
    • Amanda is shown to be more aggressive, rude and rebellious in the TV series continuity and in the Keisuke Satō manga than in The Enchanted Parade, who only really got aggressive when pushed, but is pretty calm and laidback otherwise. To contrast, in The Enchanted Parade, Amanda immediately becomes friends with Akko upon their first interactions, whereas in the TV series, the two briefly butted heads a few times before becoming friends.
    • Constanze is depicted as being incredibly aloof in the TV series and like with Amanda, she and Akko started off on very rocky terms before becoming friends unlike in The Enchanted Parade, where the two get along immediately.
  • Adaptational Nice Guy:
    • Downplayed with Akko. While Akko can still be insensitive in the TV series, it's considerably more toned down from how she was in the short films.
    • In the films, Diana is an Academic Alpha Bitch who acts prejudiced against Akko for her love of Shiny Chariot, never misses a chance to berate her for lack of skill when it comes to magic, and refuses to help her when there's nothing for her to gain. In the TV series, Diana is helpful to the other students and a very hard worker when it comes to learning magic, while her criticisms of Akko comes from a genuine (if slightly condescending) desire that she be a better student.
  • Adaptational Personality Change: The films and TV series differ in Diana's portrayal. In the films, she's more prone to causing accidents and is easily more flustered by Akko's antics. In the TV series, she's more well-put together and is hard to fluster, most likely due to the slower pacing slowly revealing the Hidden Depths she harbors.
  • Adaptational Wimp: In the short films, Akko quickly develops her magical abilities while battling monsters. In the series, the writers are allowed to slow down the pacing. As a result, Akko's even more of a Loser Protagonist; her talents developing bit by bit, provided that she doesn't catch Aesop Amnesia. Her lack of ability is actually a major plot point.
  • Added Alliterative Appeal: Professor Croix's "Sorcery Solution System".
  • An Aesop:
    • The core message of the series is that it takes more than just passion to succeed; it takes hard work, dedication, and constant practice in order to achieve your dream. Akko is passionate about magic, but her complete and total lack of skill makes her one of the worst students at Luna Nova. That's before The Reveal that Shiny Chariot drained her magic at the magic show Akko went to as a child. Even so, Akko vows to press on.
    • On the other hand, passion is acknowledged to be equally essential as hard work. In fact, it is Akko's devotion to Chariot's ideals that ultimately unlock the full power of the Grand Triskellion, something that Chariot and Croix failed to do.
    • Akko was meant to express this as Yoh Yoshinari made her as a representation of animators who thought that raw passion made up for a lack of technique.
  • Alien Blood: The corpse in "Undead Travelogue" has green blood and tears. Probably because it was reanimated with magic, and magic is green.
  • All for Nothing: Two cases in "A Road to Arcturus":
    • Listing all the sins Croix made. She crippled hundreds of people of their magic, forsake and humiliated her best friend, terrorize humans and witches alike with her inventions, scarred the Chosen One for life, depleted all remaining supply of magic and started a new world war. Her reward is getting world altering magic that cannot work for her, only Akko can who she drove away. Nice Job Fixing It, Villain! barely describes Croix's terrible position who will most likely have her credentials removed, hunted down by her kind and be remembered as an embarrassment throughout history.
    • Chariot has a despairing moment. The Grand Triskellion ruined her life and now learns that it cannot be used by anyone but Akko. The Witches are too stubborn and foolish to ever comprehend this, most of the children are either fully committed in traditions or have lost faith in magic and Akko left because of what Chariot did to her childhood. To Chariot, that Grand Triskellion is a worthless stick. Had Chariot just followed Diana's advice to be with Akko, she could have redeemed herself.
  • All Just a Dream: "Akko's Adventure in Sucyworld" 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.
  • Alternate Continuity:
    • The series takes place when Akko begins her time at Luna Nova and as such has her acquire the Shiny Rod a lot sooner than she did in the film.note  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 films, Akko and Sucy do not get along very well at first.
  • The Alternet: At the beginning of "Wagandea", Frank states that witches have their own communication networks that are separate from the one other humans use.
  • Always a Bigger Fish: In "Starting Over", 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.
  • Ambiguously Bi:
    • Akko has Ship Tease moments with both Diana and Andrew, frequently speaking and thinking about them in similar ways. It helps that both have a Defrosting Ice Queen dynamic with her.
    • Hannah is one of the students fawning over Andrew in his introduction. However, in Chamber of Time, she's attracted to Amanda in her male Appleton student disguise, even when she learns about her gender in the photo.
  • Ambiguously Gay:
    • Chariot du Nord and Croix Meridies were very close friends during their Luna Nova days, had several very emotionally intimate moments together, and despite Croix absolutely destroying their friendship, tricking Chariot into stealing the magical ability of her audience, Chariot still doesn't hesitate to try and save her when the Noir Rod goes berserk, while Croix quickly shifts gears to pleading with her to abandon her and save herself. She's also quite distressed in the epilogue when Croix has to leave, and gives a rather emotional farewell, complete with a rather wistful promise to wait for her return.
    • Diana, especially as her relationship with Akko mirrors that of their teachers. Her official artwork and interactions with Akko in the show play into her acting as a flustered tsundere to Akko. When the rest of her classmates are fawning over Andrew, she just looks completely disinterested, but it's hinted later that it's likely due to their previous frosty history and their interactions are more playful later on. In episode 10, she imagines Akko in the art style of a yuri manga, The Rose of Versailles, when she's struck by the love bee. In that same episode she also laughs off the idea of her and Andrew being in a relationship, but due to conflicting views on magic as opposed to her supposed sexuality would permanently shut down the idea. She also never pays any mind to males like Thomas and Frank that fawn over her, but also never brings up her sexuality that could shut them down as well.
    • Sucy. When Akko is about to kiss Sucy awake inside her mindscape, Dragon!Sucy (which is made up of all of her stray thoughts and inner desires) gets hearts in its eyes and becomes very sad when the Original Sucy denies Akko the kiss. It should also be noted that out of the main trio, Sucy is the only one who doesn't get Ship Tease with male characters.
  • Amusing Injuries: In "Starting Over", Sucy states that witches are hard to kill. Apparently, even minimal magical training, like Akko's, is enough to shake off pain and injuries.
  • Animate Dead: In "Undead Travelogue", the combination of Akko's Restoration Magic and Sucy's graveyard mushroom winds up reviving a corpse.
  • Animated Armour: Croix animates a suit of armor in "Amanda O'Neill and the Holy Grail". Said armor promptly attaches itself to a hapless Appleton Academy student and goes on a rampage until Amanda manages to defeat it.
  • Art Evolution: Inverted from the film to the TV series. Compared to the first short films, the series has a lot less fluid animation, less detail in the character drawings, much flatter shading, and the backgrounds (done by Studio Bihou, as opposed to Studio Pablo, who did the original short films) are a considerable downgrade. All of this, of course, is to be expected when you're going from individual high-budgeted short films to the monetary and scheduling realities of TV production.
  • Art Shift:
    • Two incidents in "Akko's Adventure in Sucyworld":
      • 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.
    • In "Bee Affection", those targeted by people affected by the Lovelove Bee get an extra-wide-eyed, Shojo-like look and flowered Love Bubbles. But only to those affected by the bee:
    • "Stanship Take Off!" 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.
  • Artist Disillusionment: invoked
    • "Night Fall". Annabel Crème has become disillusioned with writing after fans vocally hate the direction she takes the Night Fall novels in. She gets better.
    • Parodied in "Pohjola's Ordeal", where the yeti loses confidence in his abilities as a craftsman because of internet flaming. Akko talks him out of it.
  • Artistic License: The series' grasp of contemporary English politics. For starters, it seems to think being a hereditary aristocrat is a shoo-in for a political career, including the Earl of Hanbridge inviting his son to a COBR meeting in the finale. It also misuses the term "Minister of [X]" to mean essentially a Cabinet position, whereas actual Cabinet positions are officially called "Secretary of State for [X]", which multiple Ministers of State working under them. There's also an unspecified European country they're close to war with, even before Croix's hatemongering smartphone app starts spreading discord.
  • As Long as It Sounds Foreign: The series is peppered with faux-Latin spells that are largely nonsense, but presumably sound catchy to a Japanese-speaking audience.
  • Ash Face: Has happened to Akko more than once:
    • In "Night Fall", she causes a huge explosion during her fundamental alchemy exam.
    • In "New Age Magic", Croix uses a blast of stored energy to revive the Fire Fairy, which burns Akko in the process.
  • Astonishingly Appropriate Appearance: In "The Fountain", 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.

    B-C 
  • Back for the Finale: Every minor character that has appeared throughout the series, including the Shooting Star, return to help out in "Changing at the Edge of the World".
  • Balloonacy: In "Samhain Magic Festival", Akko has trouble keeping afloat after turning into a flying elephant, so Lotte conjures some balloons to help her out.
  • Barehanded Blade Block: Akko does it with a guillotine in "Akko's Adventure in Sucyworld".
  • Bears Are Bad News: Arcas, the gigantic polar bear guardian of the Polaris Fountain.
  • Big Fancy House: The Hanbridge manor is massive. The Cavendish estate is nothing to sneeze at either. This is justified since both families are wealthy nobility.
  • Big, Thin, Short Trio: Jasminka (Big), Amanda (Thin), and Constanze (Short).
  • Bittersweet Ending: The two-part Samhain Festival arc ends on a bittersweet note. On one hand, Akko's performance was extremely successful, not only succeeding in entertaining the crowd (and gaining Diana's respect to boot), but also freeing Vajarois' spirit from her suffering in the process. On the other hand however, despite it's success, not only did Akko not win the title for Moonlit Witch (instead going to Diana), but their act causes them to get downright disqualified from the festival entirely due to it going against tradition, which disappoints even Diana upon hearing about it.
  • Bland-Name Product:
    • In "Pact of the Dragon", Jasminka eats a bag of Olitos.
    • In "Stanship Take Off!", 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.
    • "Yesterday" has in the background of the scene with Andrew and Akko a shop named "Mark & Sponcer", a reference to Marks & Spencer.
  • Book-Ends:
    • The series begins with Shiny Chariot using the Shiny Arc to destroy a monster created by Croix's magitek as part of her show. The final conflict of the series is resolved when Akko and Diana use the Shiny Arc to destroy the missile possessed by Croix's out-of-control magitek.
    • Further Book-Ends: The show starts with Shiny Chariot inspiring Akko and Diana. It ends with Akko and Diana inspiring the next generation of witches.
    • In "Starting Over", a significant plot point is Akko's inability to fly a broom, which leads to her making friends with Lotte and Sucy (via perilous adventure). In the final scene of "Changing at the Edge of the World", with all her friends watching, she floats off the ground on a broom for the first time. (Not counting the Shooting Star broom, which had a mind of its own.)
    • Also in "Starting Over", Akko ends up being thrown off the Leyline and, in a somewhat-lengthy sequence, plummets head-first toward the Forest of Arcturus far below. In "Changing at the Edge of the World", the same thing happens again when the possessed missile knocks her off the Shooting Star, just before she and the Triskelion-enhanced Shiny Rod have their Heroic Second Wind.
  • Botanical Abomination: A benevolent version in the Great Witch, Jennifer, whose spirit fused with a tree after death, turning her into a still-sapient Plant Person.
  • Breather Episode: "Pohjola's Ordeal", after the Serial Escalation from 11-15, is much sillier and relaxed, though it still manages to have tension.
  • Broad Strokes: The series takes this approach in regards to loosely adapting the short films in the first cour. While it does reuse several elements and some basic plot points from the films, it executes them in a very different manner from the films.
  • Broken Pedestal:
    • Akko is completely broken after learning that Professor Ursula/Shiny Chariot accidentally stole her magic potential, rendering her as an Inept Mage. Thankfully, she gets better and she still sees Chariot as her main inspiration and mentoring her to be a proper witch.
    • "Road to Arcturus" reveals that Croix's reason for her extreme actions is a desperate attempt to gain Woodward's approval. But Woodward continues to ignore her just like years ago causing Croix to yell at her to just disappear which the former complied. Unlike the above example, their relationship remains fractured.
    • Chariot seems to lose respect for Woodward as well for her indirect role in ruining her life and her friends'.
  • Cacophony Cover Up: In "Bee Affection", Akko magics up a giant squirrel as a distraction so that she, Lotte and Sucy can sneak into a party undetected.
  • Central Theme:
    • In the first cour, "highbrow" traditionalism versus "lowbrow" populism. In the face of an evolving world, the magical establishment stubbornly sticks to their staid old ways and studious adherence to proper studying despite how wildly unprofitable it is because they believe it's the only way to preserve "the magic" of the craft. This attitude pits them against Akko, who idolizes a flashy stage magician and lugs around a Collectible Card Game with flavor text gleaned from Luna Nova's repository of magical knowledge in lieu of any actual magical training and study.
    • In the second cour, the relationship between magic and technology. Both the establishment and their former prodigy, Croix Meridies, want to bring magic back to the world; whereas the establishment shuns technology for fear it will ruin the magic irrevocably, Croix utilizes cutting-edge technology to make magic more efficient and thus solves the school's financial crisis. But this comes at a dark cost—the only way she can power the Noir Rod and find the Grand Triskelion is by using technology to provoke hatemongering populism over a football game, the exact opposite of Akko's desire to bring magic back by making people laugh and smile at entertaining spectacle. As the meaning of "Sybilladura Lelladybura" implies, Akko and Diana must reconcile the old and the new if they hope to help magic survive in the modern world.
  • Cerebus Syndrome: The anime takes a more serious tone after "Samhain Magic Festival".
  • Character Name and the Noun Phrase: "Amanda O'Neill and the Holy Grail", "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 the Shiny Rod at vital moments? Turns out they are like passwords 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 the Shiny Rod? Claíomh Solais, the key.
    • In "Papiliodia", Akko mentions having collected all of the Shiny Chariot cards, save one ultra rare card. Come "Cavendish", Diana has that card as a special treasure.
    • After its debut in "Don't Stop Me Now", the Shooting Star darts off on its own, circulating the world and occasionally being sighted worldwide in news reports. It returns to save Akko during the final battle.
  • Clap Your Hands If You Believe: It's heavily implied that magic began declining because people stopped believing in it with the advent of technology. With the increased belief brought on by watching the protagonists deal with a missile, magical resources begin increasing.
  • Color-Coded Emotions: Croix has a color wheel of them. Notably, red corresponds to anger.
  • Colour-Coded for Your Convenience: Luna Nova groups its students into trios. Each trio's uniform has a different coloured ribbon around their hats, along with a matching waist sash.
  • Color Failure: Lotte at the beginning of "Night Fall".
  • Continuity Nod:
    • After "Don't Stop Me Now", newspapers shown on screen tend to have an article about Shooting Star sightings as it flies around the world.
    • During the car trip to Diana's manor, Paul refers to Akko as "the witch that destroyed his party" in which Andrew argues that she was the one that made it memorable in the first place, both of which call back to "Bee Affection".
  • Continuity Reboot: Is one for the Little Witch Academia franchise, as it disregards the continuity of the previous two short films entirely in favor of starting over from the very beginning. This was even subtly acknowledged in the title of the first episode as it's titled "Starting Over".
  • Contrived Coincidence:
    • Parodied in "Pohjola's Ordeal", where the Greenman Disease works off ridiculously specific triggers. The conditions and effects of the illness make it work more like a curse than an actual pathology in practice; it only happens in a specific region of Finland when, among other things, a certain amount of CO2 exhaled by humans coincides with a specific breeding rate of a specific family of fish, the release of pollen into the air, a freaking planetary alignment event and the consumption of a specific traditional homemade pie when baked at a specific temperature. The conditions are so stringent that the book detailing the disease itself points out that it's something one could only expect to occur AT MOST once every thousand years. Too bad Akko and company had just arrived in Lotte's village for that specific pie...
    • On top of characters just not telling other character important things, the second half of the series also relies on a lot of these. Ursula's attempts to tell her side of the story are always conveniently interrupted. Also, while it's something Croix might have hoped for, it's awfully convenient that Ursula was out of the plot exactly long enough to not be around to see and tell anyone that the danger that Croix saved everyone from was clearly manufactured by her to begin with.
  • Corporal Punishment: If a witch commits fraud using magic, her tongue will be branded with a hot iron. The punishment for murder is even worse.
  • Crisis Makes Perfect: When someone’s life isn’t in danger, Akko forgets that spells require Magical Incantations. Consequentially, using the Shiny Rod properly is a Once per Episode thing. In Shiny Chariot's case, she hardly ever needed words to cast magic.
  • Crush Filter: Apparently, the Lovelove Bee's sting turns the targeted girl into an exaggerated stereotype of Shoujo gorgeousness, complete with sparkles. It isn't revealed what it makes guys look like.
  • Crying Critters: In the episode where the fish learn transformation, they cry.
  • Cultural Translation: In the German dub, when Croix pitches her magitek, she claims that it will cost the school zero Euros, even though the UK didn't join the eurozone.
  • Cut-and-Paste Translation:
    • "Don't Stop Me Now": In the Japanese version, when Akko is holding on to the Shooting Star broom to win a tournament, she yells that she wouldn't let go of the broom even to the very depths of hell. In the English dub, likely due to religious censorship, she yelled that she'd hang on to the broom forever.
    • "Night Fall": The English dub has Lotte state she reads Night Fall for the "love triangle" between Arthur, Belle, and Edgar. However, the subtitles, which more closely follow the Japanese dialog, reveal that she's a straight-up Yaoi Fangirl.

    D 
  • A Day in the Limelight: Most episodes focus on Akko and her personal growth into a great witch but "Night Fall", "Akko's Adventure in Sucyworld", "Amanda O'Neill and the Holy Grail", "Stanship Take Off!", and "Cavendish" focus on other characters.
  • Darker and Edgier: The second cour is darker than the first but "Things We Said Today" takes it Up to Eleven. It is revealed that Chariot tried to restore the magic in the world, similarly to Croix, ten years prior, but the process had the side effect of crippling the magic potential of people. Akko and Diana turn out to have both been victims of this, though Diana's skill now suggests the damage isn't necessarily irreparable. Once Akko finds this out, she immediately tips into a Heroic BSoD. Compared to the mostly happy show before this, it is a huge contrast.
  • Dark-Skinned Redhead: Wangari, the announcer that follows the flying broom competition in "Don't Stop Me Now".
  • Death by Childbirth: Mrs. Holbrooke died shortly after giving birth to her daughter, Headmistress Miranda Holbrooke, as revealed in "Undead Travelogue".
  • Decon-Recon Switch: The series serves to break down all the classic magical cliches and elements. But at the same time, there are silver linings that made them worthwhile:
    • Stock Shōnen Hero: Akko's acts and outbursts can be seen by those as obnoxious and overwhelming and sometimes causes trouble for almost everyone which worsens having to bear heavy burdens of an epic quest when she hasn't graduated school yet. It's gotten bad that Akko at times doubts herself and wears her persona as a mask to hide it. However as Akko continues her journey, she sees the good and bad of magic and this motivates her to further push forward and strengthening her beliefs because she honestly sees making people happy with magic as the right course. Diana lampshades that what Akko does is more powerful than any words that cast spells.
    • Stock Shōnen Rival: Akko has no chance in beating Diana in terms of magic prowess. At the same time while Diana wins more than her opposite, the only reason these victories happen because Diana supports the system that only benefits solely one party than all which ironically causes the very problems she wanted to end. She gets called out on several occasions when it became clear she's only helping the small party. Although, Diana doesn't mean to be cold-hearted to Akko and her friends because she had to grow up without her parents and fears for her family's legacy that is about to fade away. However as the series progresses, it becomes clear that rivals doesn't traditionally mean enemies. They are friends that while have different methods to achieve their goals, their point of views are the same which is critical when Akko and Diana comfort one another when things get rough.
  • Deconstruction: Stealth Mentor / It's the Journey That Counts: Just because someone like Woodward founded magic, doesn't mean she's always right and her outdated methods would bring more harm than good to the person she is claiming to help. While learning to be better about oneself is a good moral, it won't do any good if they are in too deep in problems to the point they do need compensation for everything they've been through. It's implied that Woodward wanted to deliver a similar speech but is too embarrassed to say it after ruining Chariot and Croix's actual lives. It also didn't help that she abandons the latter two leaving them to see her as less of a mentor.
  • Deface of the Moon: The moon is scarred with a giant four-pointed star-shaped crater. "Yesterday" reveals that Shiny Chariot made it at her last show before disappearing; lacking resources from her previous show, she called on the Words in desperation. The resulting arrow was powerful enough to leave the moon with its present appearance.
  • Defrosting Ice Queen: Multiple characters, especially Andrew, Diana and Sucy gradually lighten up over their character arcs, thanks in no small part due to their interactions with Akko.
  • Diabolus ex Nihilo: Who'd have expected "A Road to Arcturus" to end with a goddamn Magitek ICBM, of all things?
  • Disappears into Light: Not a person, but the Shiny Rod, once its task is completed.
  • Dismantled MacGuffin: A variation. The 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.
  • Distant Finale: Downplayed. The epilogue at the end of "Charging at the Edge of the World" takes place two months after Akko and Diana fought and defeated the Noir Rod and at the beginning of the second school year, with the biggest changes being that Ursula has kept her hair red, Hannah and Barbara are hanging out with the others and Akko can finally fly.
  • Does This Remind You of Anything?:
    • While a teacher is demonstrating potion brewing in "Papiliodia", most of the characters are shown to be bothered by the fumes. Sucy, however, has quite a different response.
    • Akko is hyperactive and highly impatient, gets bored with her classes to the point of falling asleep, and cannot focus on something for very long. Besides not being born to a magical family, these have been shown to be reasons why she cannot learn magic as quickly as her peers, which in turn gets her a lot of general bullying from other students and mistreatment by her professors. It's really not that much different than how a student with disabilities would probably experience at school.
  • Don't Go in the Woods: The Arcturus Forest. It is said that witches trapped in there are never able to leave. By "Blue Moon"'s reveal, the name of the forest and the meaning of the aforementioned saying became more important than ever.
  • Dub-Induced Plot Hole: In the English dub of "Night Fall", Lotte and Annabel Crème geek out over the two male leads of the eponymous novel series sharing a shoehorn. We, the English-speaking audience, are just as confused by this as Akko and Sucy are. It's actually a reference to an earlier line in the Japanese version where Lotte explains she ships the two male leads, and Annabel confirms she put Yaoi subtext in there. That line was changed to Lotte's general interest in a "love triangle" in the English localization for homophobic reasons, rendering Lotte and Annabel's later conversation indecipherable.

    E 
  • Early-Bird Cameo: All side characters, Diana, Amanda, Constanze, and Jasminka, appear during the matriculation ceremony. Andrew, who's introduced in "The Fountain", appears in the opening since "Starting Over". Diana also appears during the magic show in "Starting Over", sitting up and to the right from Akko.
  • Early Installment Weirdness:
    • In "Starting Over", Avery, the witch with purple hair and hair decorations, is part of a trio with Hannah and Barbara and spoke directly to Akko. Not only did she not interact with any of them afterward, but she is pretty much reduced to a background character with no lines. Also, among the faculty in the same episode, there are some unnamed, non-speaking teachers that either never appear again or make extremely brief cameos after the presentation.
    • When we see Akko in her witch outfit for the first time in "Papiliodia", the dress is shown to be a lot longer than it is for the rest of the series, in which it's depicted as being rather short in length. It is later explained that Akko cut her outfit down in-universe, explaining the shift in length, but it can still be a bit jarring to see in hindsight.
  • Earn Your Happy Ending: In "A Road to Arcturus", Akko and Ursula spend several episodes separated and alone from one another, with Akko feeling betrayed by her idol, while Ursula despairs that Akko abandoned her. Thankfully, with help of everyone along the way, the two are able to find each other again and they express their love towards one another, saving their relationship.
  • Easter Egg: The identity of "GreatBen810" is not explicitly revealed, but if you pay close attention near the end of "Night Fall", 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 modeled after Eton College, a real life example of this.
  • Eldritch Abomination: The Noir Rod after absorbing all the negative energy from humans is a sentient Shapeshifter that wants to destroy the planet. It's true form is similar to something out of Neon Genesis Evangelion. Its shapeshifting Spider form has a laser at its bottom, its giant dragon form has multiple eyes as well as it being a skeleton body with the head, torso, right arm, and left leg made out of metal with the Noir Fuel Devices act like skin and its ICBM form can merge and change its body.
  • Eldritch Location: Wagandea, an explicitly endless tree with pollen that can cause witches to lose their magic.
  • Emotion Eater: Croix's Noir Fuel Spirit Devices absorb negative emotions and store it as magic, at the expense of the magical potential of the people whose emotions are absorbed. Her Dream Fuel Spirit Device that were used in Chariot's show did the same for positive emotions. Eventually, the Noir Fuel Spirit Devices got so overwhelmed by the negative emotions of the populace that they Grew Beyond Their Programming, turned on Croix and launched a missile in order to increase the negativity even more.
  • Everything's Better with Rainbows: They appear during the World-Healing Wave brought on by the Grand Triskelion.
  • Explosive Stupidity: Akko causes a big ass explosion during her fundamental alchemy exam, destroying a 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.
  • Eyelid Pull Taunt:
    • Diana's reflection in the mischievous mirror from "What You Will" does this to her.
    • In "Intellect and Sensibility", after Akko manages to dodge some attacks from a bunch of snakes, she does this to them while in her mouse form.

    F 
  • Famous Ancestor: The Cavendish family claims direct descent from Beatrix, one of the Nine Olde Witches.
  • Fate Worse than Death:
    • The punishment for a witch trying to resurrect the dead is said to be hundred times worse than death.
    • 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.
  • Fetch Quest: "Pohjola's Ordeal", where Akko, Sucy, and Lotte have to find the five ingredients needed to make a cure for the Greenman disease.
  • Figure It Out Yourself: The Seven Words of Arcturus work in this way. As Ursula explains, simply knowing the words means nothing. To truly revive a Word, one must understand what it truly means and represents. The only way to do that is experience. For this reason, Ursula doesn't tell Akko how to revive the Words but instead helps by pointing her in directions to help her discover them naturally.
  • 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."
  • For Want of a Nail: If it wasn't for the pickled plums that Akko tried to bring on her debut, her arrival on Luna Nova would have been a quick ride, but at a cost not finding the Shiny Rod sooner, in which could have made her first few months in school a living hell until then.
  • 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 "Starting Over", the dragon at Chariot's show appears out of a set of cubes. Come "Blue Moon", 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 "Samhain Magic Festival" also appear and form a larger cube, just like what the dragon appeared from.
    • Whenever an 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 "Samhain Magic Festival") or outright foreshadowing (such as in "Blue Moon").
    • In the wormhole on the way to the school, there are brief flashes that offer hints to later episodes. Among the seen objects are Diana Cavendish, the magical butterflies, the Shooting Star broom, the Night Fall book, the guy from the opening, a wistful Shiny Chariot, a contract in dragon language, the ghost of Vajarois, fairies, Croix Meridies and a nuclear explosion.
    • Pretty much every newspaper in the series has a story about the Shooting Star being seen around the world, implying we haven't seen the last of it. We haven't.
    • "Orange Submariner" features two posters of a film series featuring a Gillman-like amphibian creature. Later in the episode, Akko becomes a fish person herself.
    • "Chariot of Fire": In the cafeteria, Constanze and Jasminka are staring at posters for the Wild Hunt.
    • "Pohjola's Ordeal" has Akko's hallucinations, one of which features an evil-looking Shiny Chariot. While Chariot is definitely not evil, she was the cause of most of Akko's grief, when it was revealed she absorbed Akko's magic potential during her show at the beginning of the series.
  • Friend or Idol Decision: In "Blue Moon", 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.
  • Fun with Subtitles: The Asenshi Sub-Group likes to get creative on occasion, such as applying subtitles to every screen displaying the same image on a wall of Ominous Multiple Screens, or color-coding the words as Croix reads off a list on her Colour-Coded Emotions app.
  • Funny Background Event: While every single one of the young witches at Luna Nova is fawning over how handsome Andrew is when he enters the room, instead of her usual dignified demeanor, Diana looks bored out of her mind.

    G 
  • Generic Doomsday Villain: The Noir Rod after exposure to negative energy wants to destroy humanity. That's all there is to it and it possesses no personality or reason why it's doing this. It's more of an Eldritch Force.
  • 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.
  • Gold-Colored Superiority: The Shiny Rod is a transforming golden wand which doesn't need to be near a Sorcerer's Stone to work. One of its forms includes an unique broom, the Shiny Volley, with extra bristle segments. It fast enough that it can easily out pace spells fired from a wand, but not quite fast enough to out-maneuver a magic enhanced ballistic missile.
  • Gone Horribly Right: The Noir Rod was designed to absorb negative emotions to fuel it, primarily through the use of a cellphone app. By the time it absorbs a certain amount, it becomes sentient and stops needing the app, to the point that Croix herself can't shut it off.
  • Good Angel, Bad Angel: In "Akko's Adventure in Sucyworld", Akko dives into Sucy's head, where she meets personifications of Sucy's personality traits, including her consciences, which manifests as this trope. Sucy being Sucy, neither one of them is exactly pleasant.
  • Gorgeous Garment Generation: The ability of the Cinderella dress up set in "Bee Affection". But its effects end after two hours, rather than at midnight.
  • Green Thumb: Technically, all magic in the setting is this, being drawn from Yggdrasil. One effect of this nature is that, similar to a tree, witches are quite Long-Lived but when they do pass particularly powerful witches actually become trees. Woodward and Beatrix being the most prominent examples.

    H-K 
  • Halloween Episode: "What You Will" and "Samhain Magic Festival" focus on the Samhain Festival.
  • Hard Work Hardly Works: Subverted. Akko goes in thinking this will be in effect, and because of it, she fails constantly, and it's even explicitly pointed out in episode 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. It's later revealed that both Akko and Diana had their magic potential stolen at a young age, so the only reason Diana is better at magic than The Chosen One is because hard work actually worked.
  • Heart Is an Awesome Power: Akko's devotion to Shiny Chariot and her cause is what unlocks the Grand Triskellion.
    • Diana admits to Akko that without her love for her idol that drives her, she would have given up being a witch a long time ago.
  • History Repeats: It's revealed that Croix's Start of Darkness was not out of jealousy towards Chariot but Woodward's callous dismissal of her for so many years. When Chariot learns about this, she reacts in horror, remembering not long ago that she did the exact same thing to Akko. This what drives Chariot to protect Akko and Croix even more.
  • House Fey: Various fairies maintains Luna Nova Academy, including a Cyclops and a minotaur doing maintenance and a fire fairy that heats the water. "New Age Magic" kicks off with them all going on strike due to not getting enough magical energy from the Sorcerer's Stone.
  • Huge Guy, Tiny Girl: Lotte's parents, as seen in "Pohjola's Ordeal".
  • Humiliation Conga: Croix in "A Road to Arcturus". Not only she has a massive breakdown when she is shown that the World Restoration Magic is nothing like she expected it to be, but her Noir Rod Transforming Mecha goes haywire, her despised rival Chariot saves her from it (looking heroic in the meantime), and Akko unlocks the seventh and final Word and destroys the Noir Rod with it, leaving Croix alone and impotent.
  • I Kiss Your Hand: Andrew plants a kiss on Akko's hand after being stung by the Lovelove Bee in "Bee Affection". Cue Akko freaking out.
  • I Take Offense to That Last One!: "Night Fall" sees the lead trio being scolded for stealing a pie from the kitchen. Akko objects- because they didn't steal a pie, they stole a tart.
  • Icarus Allusion: The second end credits revolve around this.
  • The Idol's Blessing: Despite being massively incompetent, series protagonist Akko manages to summon the Shiny Rod, a staff once wielded by her lifetime idol, Shiny Chariot.
  • Impact Silhouette: In "Pohjola's Ordeal", 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.
  • Impoverished Patrician: In the present day, the Cavendish family is nearing bankruptcy because the acting head of the family, Diana's aunt, is pawning off the family's assets to fund her own lifestyle.
  • Inkblot Cartoon Style: In episode 8, Sucy's memories are drawn in an old-timey cartoon way, with monochrome characters drawn with simplistic shapes, pie eyes, and Rubber Hose Limbs. To drive the Retraux home, they are framed with film reel borders, and are overall a lot less complex than the series' normal art style.
  • Interclass Friendship:
    • Muggle-born witch Atsuko Kagari becoming friends with Blue Blooded witch Diana Cavendish during Diana's trial to be the head of her family. Though, the two butted heads over their opposing ideals of magic before becoming friends.
    • There's Akko and aristocrat Lord Andrew Hanbridge. And like Diana, the two had their fair shares of arguments before becoming friends.
  • Journey to the Center of the Mind: Basically Akko going into Sucy's mind in "Akko's Adventure in Sucyworld".
  • Just Friends: Akko and Andrew's relationship is ultimately confirmed to be this, with Yoh Yoshinari calling it a "playful guy-guy relationship".
  • Kangaroo Court: In "Akko's Adventure in Sucyworld", while Akko is traveling through Sucy's mind, she comes across different types of Sucys with their own personalities who want to be part of the real Sucy that are arrested by police versions of Sucy and taken to court. The judge and jury are all Sucys and judged every one of them guilty. When Akko points out that the entire trial is unfair to all the Sucys and their desire to be part of Sucy isn't a crime, she is pronounced guilty and sentenced to death.

    L 
  • Large Ham: The corpse Akko accidentally revives spends almost the entirety of "Undead Travelogue" over-dramatizing every trivial step in his frantic Roaring Rampage of Revenge.
  • Laser-Guided Karma: For defending and supporting them during their strike, the Faeries spare Akko and her roommates when they rampage across the campus.
  • Last Episode Theme Reprise: The first opening theme, "Shiny Ray", starts playing in "Changing at the Edge of the World" when Akko rescues Diana from her fall.
  • Late-Arrival Spoiler: The series doesn't even bother hiding the fact that Professor Ursula is Shiny Chariot.
  • "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 "Night Fall", it's revealed that the name Annabel Crème is actually shared between thirteen different people who wrote the Night Fall series.

    M 
  • The Magic Comes Back: Ultimately, the result of the main characters inspiring people the world over to believe in them as they battle the ICBM — magical resources are implied to increase, and Yggdrasil even appears!
  • The Magic Goes Away:
    • Implied by the conversation between Fafnir the dragon and Luna Nova's faculty in "Pact of the Dragon". 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 normal people don't care about magic that much. In fact, the dragon himself does online trading on his computer, instead of hoarding a traditional kind of treasure.
    • Related. In "The Fountain", it is shown 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 "New Age Magic", a graph shows a steady decline in available magic resources since the mid 1600s. Interestingly, the sharpest decline was from the 1780s into the early 19th century, corresponding to the 1st Industrial Revolution in England and the Napoleonic Wars.
  • Meaningful Echo:
    • Ursula ("Blue Moon"): That which is dreamed cannot be grasped. But work towards it, day after day and you will find it in your hands.
    • Akko ("A Road to Arcturus"): Professor, I'll keep working even harder! I'll work hard to become a witch who can make everyone smile.
  • Mental World: Nearly the entirety of "Akko's Adventures in Sucyworld" takes place in one of these inside Sucy's mind.
  • Mentor Occupational Hazard: Subverted. After pinning several obvious character death flags on Ursula/Chariot, from her "dead anime mother" hairstyle, to promises to protect Akko no matter her loss in power, to being eaten by the monster in front of Akko in "A Road to Arcturus", she ends up surviving.
  • Militaries Are Useless: In the finale, they do send interceptor missiles after the ICBM. Not that it actually does anything to stop it.
  • Minor Major Character: The Nine Olde Witches, the founders of Luna Nova Academy and some of the most powerful witches ever. Only two of them are named and are involved in the plot to varying degrees, but nothing is known about the other seven (except for, of all things, their hats).
  • Mood Whiplash: At the end of "A Road to Arcturus", Akko discovers the final word, unlocks the Grand Triskelion and rainbows, stars, flowers, and bright colors begin shooting over the gloomy Arcturus forest. Then, a klaxon sound starts overtaking the background music and then a launched ICBM comes into view...
  • Morph Weapon: The Shining Rod transforms into seven different weapons, depending on the spell that’s cast:
  • Mushroom Samba: The entirety of "Akko's Adventure in Sucyworld" is this after Sucy drinks a mushroom poison.
  • Mythology Gag:
    • A subtle one to the first manga by Teri Terio appears in "Starting Over" as one of Akko's visions during the trip on the leyline to Luna Nova features a shot of her holding a Luna Nova acceptance letter. The letter in particular being the same one as the letter in the manga.
    • Two of Akko's Chariot cards in "Papiliodia" feature the Briton Red Dragon from the first film and the Giant from The Enchanted Parade.
    • Like in the first film, when Akko teases Diana about her being embarrassed in "Intellect and Sensibility", Diana threatens to drop Akko off the broom.
    • The Noir Rod is destroyed by Akko and Diana in exactly the same fashion that the Dragon was by Akko in the first film, which was by exploding after swallowing an arrow from the Shiny Rod.

    N 
  • Naïve Newcomer: Akko, even more than in the film, as she is first entering not only Luna Nova, but also the witch world as a whole.
  • No Cartoon Fish: Subverted. Fish are drawn very realistically and don't have any anthropomorphized traits note , but they can speak (if only in their own language) and can wear accessories, like hair bows or tiny witch hats.
  • No Good Deed Goes Unpunished: In "Samhain Magic Festival", instead of allowing themselves to be eaten by Vajarois as a sacrifice for the Samhain Magic Festival like volunteers before them, the trio instead try to exorcise the spirit and absolve her of her eternal misery. After succeeding in doing so, freeing Vajarois of her tortured existence while entertaining the audience more than everybody else in the show, they end up getting disqualified from the contest for not following the rules.
  • No Name Given: The proprietor of "Last Wednesday", a curio shop full of magical artifacts, is never called by name.note  Another example is the country England is about to go to war with near the end of the series, because of a contested goal during a soccer match (and Croix' intervention to harvest magical fuel from the rioters' rage). The name is never said and considering England's history, there are a lot of candidates on the table.
  • Noodle Incident: The first cour's ending teases a wayward Road Trip with Akko, Lotte, Sucy, and Professor Ursula, but it's never seen in those first thirteen episodes. The road trip did eventually get explored in the drama CD that came with the Japanese only special edition of Little Witch Academia: Chamber of Time.
  • 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 "Amanda O'Neill and the Holy Grail", she nearly falls mutiple times.
  • Not Even Bothering with the Accent: Much like Translation Convention below, the English dub of the show has no one with any sort of accent despite most students being from different parts of the world and given their ages are unlikely to have lost their regional accents. It is especially strange in the case of Diana who is a natural born Brit and the school is located in Britain but does not have a British accent of any kind.
  • Not So Different:
    • Diana and Akko are complete opposites in terms of temperament, popularity, and skill level, but they were both big fans of Shiny Chariot in their childhood, and both believe in using magic to change people's hearts. It's this fact that lets Diana reach out to Akko in the middle of her Heroic BSoD in "Yesterday".
    • Croix and Chariot, despite their differences in the present, both dreamed of reviving magic back in their school days. Also, both have some serious self-esteem issues which drive a lot of their problems.
    • All four characters have very similar builds and facial shapes compared to their counterpart, and when they were students, Croix and Chariot looked a lot like Diana and Akko. This is emphasized during the second opening song when Akko and Diana stride past each other down the line of Luna Nova students, only to clasp hands and change into Croix and Chariot.
  • Number of the Beast: In "Akko's Adventure in Sucyworld", when Akko goes into Sucy's mind trying to find her original personality to wake her up (in hopes of waking up the real world Sucy, who has fallen into a deep sleep), that personality lives in room 666 of the "mushroom building" in which all her personalities live.

    O-P 
  • OOC Is Serious Business: In "Bee Affection", Akko realizes 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.
  • Only the Chosen May Wield: Zigzagged concerning the Shiny Rod. It's clear from the beginning that only the Rod's chosen wielder (Akko) can unlock the words of power, but aside from that, it seems to vary a bit. Croix has never been able to so much as touch the Rod without getting a nasty zap (even as a child), while Akko's friends can carry the Rod around without any problems. Diana has also been able to use the Rod's broom form without difficulty, even when Akko isn't even on the broom with her.
  • Our Dragons Are Different: In this case, the dragon is a daytrader and loan shark in a robe and slippers.
  • Our Founder: Luna Nova gets nine, in the form of the Nine Olde Witches — the best witches of their time, who were also responsible for creating the Grand Triskelion. Two are seen — Woodward, who was something of a mentor to Chariot, and Beatrix, the ancestor of the Cavendish family.
  • Out-of-Character Moment: Sucy is unusually polite and mostly snark-free in "Pohjola's Ordeal", another of the reasons why it's regarded as one of the strangest.
  • Out-of-Genre Experience: The last few minutes (barring the ending) of "Stanship Take Off!" turn into a mecha anime, complete with Calling Your Attacks and Finishing Move, thanks to Constanze's mechanical genius and Akko's stubbornness.
  • Passing the Torch: At the end of "Changing at the Edge of the World", Yggdrasil is reborn and it is spreading magic and happiness all over the world, in a scene reminiscent of Chariot's magic show at the beginning of "Starting Over". Several people around the globe can be seen in a montage, but special attention is given to a little Slavic blonde girl and a little American brunette girl. They are heavily implied to be the next Diana and Akko.
  • Police Are Useless: In "Undead Travelogue". 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.
  • Poor Communication Kills: Pretty much the entire second half of the series happens because Ursula refuses to tell anyone else about what she knows about Croix and all the really sketchy stuff going on. Some of the guilt she has explains why it takes her so much effort to try to admit things to Akko (just in time to always get interrupted), but considering that her guilt involves the consequences of what might be happening again, it really stands out that she never bothers to say anything until it's too late to make a difference.
  • Powered by a Forsaken Child: Shiny Chariot learns a spell from her best friend, Croix, that uses dreams and emotions to allow for greater spectacles at her stage shows. What Croix doesn't tell her is that this spell uses a person's dreams and converts it into magical energy, depriving the target of their magical ability. The main characters, Akko and Diana, were at one of Chariot's shows when they were young children. Yet when they meet again years later, Diana eventually regained her magical ability after discovering she had lost it, while Akko is left unable to even fly on a broom, the simplest of witch skills.
  • Power Incontinence: Akko's transformation magic assignment in "The Fountain" keeps backfiring. Instead of changing a rat into a bunny, she keeps getting bunny ears herself.
  • The Power of Friendship: The basic gist of the Shiny Rod's Final Word, specifically by the wielder acknowledging how much others have helped her. It seems to actually require another person to be present, as when Akko confessed to Chariot how thankful she was for all that Chariot/Urusla had done for her. Additionally, the Grand Triskellion's full power is only unleashed when Akko and Diana wield the Shiny Rod together.
  • The Power of Hate: When determining which emotions to harvest with her Noir Fuel Spirit system, Croix finds that anger and hatred are the most potent and easily attained as an energy source.
  • Production Foreshadowing: "SSSS.Next" appears on a billboard near the end of Episode 25. Following a co-production with A-1 Pictures a year later, SSSS.GRIDMAN would be released.
  • Production Throwback:
    • Inferno Cop makes a quick cameo on a TV in "Don't Stop Me Now" during Akko's flight around the world on the Shooting Star.
    • Two of the profile pictures shown on the social media site in "Discipline" are Ryuko's scissor-blade and the Kiznaiver mark.
  • Public Domain Artifact:
    • In "Blue Moon", it's revealed that the original name of Shiny Rod is Claíomh Solais, the Sword of Light from Celtic Mythology.
    • "Amanda O'Neill and the Holy Grail" features the Holy Grail. In actuality, 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.
  • Punctuated! For! Emphasis!: Out of all the Seven Words, the first one is most often spoken with emphasis on each word when ever its user(s) are about to shoot something.
  • Putting the "Pal" in Principal: Headmistress Miranda Holbrooke (next to Professor Ursula/Chariot) is the most reasonable staff member of Luna Nova, supporting Akko's desire to learn magic without giving her a hard time and dealing out stern but fair punishments whenever they are needed.

    R 
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: At the climax, the prime minister realizes that placing their trust on the witches who are already on the way to stop the missile is the best option they have and instead of actively trying to hamper their efforts they should instead work towards helping them.
  • Recurring Extra: There are several students who appear in the background on a fairly regular basis.
  • Recycled Soundtrack: While it has a new original soundtrack made exclusively for it, outside of Chariot's theme, the TV series does reuse several tracks directly from the original short films.
  • Red and Black and Evil All Over: Professor Croix's inventions have a lot to do with this color scheme, culminating in the giant weapon which she tries to unlock the Grand Triskelion with, which is black with sickly red lights all over. This is mostly because she dabbles in The Power of Hate, which is represented by red.
  • Red Ones Go Faster: Shooting Star is a sentient broom with an arrow/phoenix motif and it can out fly an ICBM, a feat which not even the Shiny Volley could do.
  • Rewatch Bonus: Croix's shapeshifting cubes are first seen briefly as a Freeze-Frame Bonus in "Blue Moon", converging into a ball in her hand at the tail end of "Samhain Magic Festival" and in "New Age Magic" transforming from an artificial faerie into a bigger monster. Now, watch Chariot's magic show from "Starting Over" again and do it again after watching "Things We Said Today".
  • Rule of Seven: Seven points in the Shiny Rod corresponding to seven points in the Big Dipper as well as seven Words needed to unlock the Grand Triskelion. Notably, there are also seven girls in Akko's friend group by the end of the series.note  Also, the flavor text on the Shiny Chariot trading card mentions a "septahedron" and the Pleiades (another constellation with seven stars, named for seven sisters from Greek mythology).
  • Running Gag: Every time a newspaper is shown, one of the stories is the Shooting Star showing up in various places around the world.

    S 
  • "Save the World" Climax: Little Witch Academia is from the same people that made Kill la Kill, and the television series has a similar structure: the first half is mostly episodic adventures in an enclosed space (an academy in both cases), then the Big Bad is revealed in the second half and the threat rapidly escalates. In this case, Akko the witch goes from attending magic lessons to saving the world from being blown up by a literal magic missile, i.e. an ICBM possessed by dark energy as a result of one of the Big Bad's experiments gone haywire.
  • Say My Name: Although not as intense as a certain other Trigger series, this happens most prominently with Croix and Chariot. Most of their early interactions involve low ominous exchanges of "Croix," and "Chariot Du Nord," but this is ramped up in "Discipline" with Croix screaming "CHAAARIOT!!!" over and over again as Chariot nearly plummets to her death and in "A Road to Arcturus" when they're fighting Croix's out-of-control cube beast, and doing a lot of desperate screaming of each other's name while they're at it. Diana and Akko occasionally get in on this too, most notably with Diana repeatedly screaming, "AKKO!" when she thinks that Akko's dying, in "Intellect and Sensibility" and "Changing at the Edge of the World".
  • Secret Test of Character: Akko is put through this in the climax of "Blue Moon", given the choice to become a witch like Chariot at the cost of her memories. She refuses by stating she'll become like Chariot on her own.
  • Serial Escalation: Not the show itself, but the fact that in "Night Fall", it's mentioned that one character in the Night Fall novels caught a nuke with their bare hands is a pretty strong indicator that the series was subjected to this.
  • Shipper on Deck:
    • Frank, Lotte and Sucy appear to ship Akko x Andrew.
    • In "Bee Affection", a crowd of party goers upon notcing Andrew and Diana's playful expressions while the two were snarking at each other comment that they would make a cute couple. Andrew and Diana laugh off the idea, due to conflicting views on magic.
  • Ship Tease: Now has its own page.
  • Shoo Out the Clowns: After Croix enters and Cerebus Syndrome hits, Lotte and Sucy drop into the background and rarely even get to hang out with Akko.
  • 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 "Pohjola's Ordeal", the research on Finland shows well in the food, architecture, and costumes worn by the people we meet.
    • In "Stanship Take Off!", all of Constanze's tools are German models.
    • The teddy bear seen in Diana's room when Akko goes to the Cavendish manor in "Cavendish" and "Intellect and Sensibility" is based on Steiff teddy bears. They're a very expensive line of toys that exists since the 1880s, so the perfect gift for a little girl from an ancient and noble household.
    • The small frame of a typical 4chan thread from "Changing at the Edge of the World" pays attention to detail. The format is on a blue (relatively SFW) board and they even keep the at-current janitorial notices accurate.
    • Whenever a shot of a UKN News bulletin is shown, the style is a dead ringer for BBC News right down to the font.
  • Slapstick Knows No Gender: Especially in Akko's case, but the other girls are hardly free from physical comedy.
  • Sliding Scale of Muggle Involvement: Initially on the lower end, with the Hanbridges and company being the major recurring muggles and the plot entirely about the supernatural shenanigans at Luna Nova. Increases by the end when it's revealed that the decline of muggle belief in magic is responsible for the decline of magic in general, and muggles the world over lend their belief to defeat the series' Final Boss.
  • Sliding Scale of Silliness vs. Seriousness: The TV series starts off relatively silly with it mostly being a Slice of Life comedy. That deeply changes after "Blue Moon" where the plot kicks in and gets more serious. It gets even more serious in "Chariot of Fire" when Croix shows up and "Things We Said Today" gets the character to go into the Despair Event Horizon.
  • Space Battle: The final battle is this. It takes place in space where the heroes (Akko and Diana) are fighting a giant nuke and they have difficulty fighting it. The allies help the fight for a bit to get them in space and the Shiny Rod makes a Heroic Sacrifice as it disappears from the world and there's a time limit until the world gets destroyed. Fitting considering the big theme of the show is stars.
  • Special Person, Normal Name: The most powerful witch in history, in whose memory the Luna Nova academy was founded, is named... Jennifer.
  • Spell My Name with an "S": In "What You Will", the fansubbers transliterated the ghost's name as "Bahalowa", but the actual name, revealed in "Samhain Magic Festival" is "Vajarois".
  • Spoiler Opening: The first opening showcases Akko flying on a broom, which she never manages to do in the series (bar the Shooting Star) til the ending of episode 25.
  • Star Power:
    • 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 Nova's 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, it’s usually to meet a Celestial Deadline.
    • The world’s 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.
  • Stealth Pun: "A Road to Arcturus" ends with a shot of a literal magic missile.
  • The Stinger:
    • Occasionally, one of the still images in the first cour's ending sequence will be replaced by a plot-relevant gag, such as the reveal of what was inside Professor Lucik's "prize" in "Don't Stop Me Now". It's a magical snake nut can. Sucy would've loved it.
    • "What You Will" ends with Hannah and Barbara still standing outside in the middle of the night, as instructed by Akko in Diana's form. Barbara sneezes.
  • Strike Episode: In "New Age Magic", the fairies that work at Luna Nova go on strike demanding for more magic allowance. Without their contributions, the castle's technology becomes unusable to the students and teachers. Akko tries to mediate between the school and the union, but winds up sympathizing with them.
  • Stupid Statement Dance Mix: Tumbling Orange created "Yay".
  • Surprisingly Good English: All of the text in the series is in perfect English, even getting things such as Internet slang right.
  • Surprisingly Realistic Outcome:
    • A school that only focuses on honing magic skills will never know how to budget their finances and resources. And without magic, they are left severely vulnerable to the more powerful Faeries.
    • This actually plays an important part in regards to Akko's Character Development, as she realizes that she won't become a great witch by mere belief and passion alone and that there are no shortcuts to become good at something. Really, the only way she can truly become good at magic is by constant practice, studying and hard work as well as having patience, just like with many pursuits, hobbies, interests and passions in real life. Even The Ace Diana, who while more privileged than Akko, only became as great she is thanks to having constantly worked and studied hard on magic ever since she was a young child.
    • In "The Samhain Festival", despite how successful Akko and her friend's performance was, Akko ultimately did not win the title of Moonlit Witch and her and her friends got disqualified entirely instead, with Diana becoming the winner instead. Because as entertaining and successful as their performance was, they still violated the festival's rules and did things that would likely disqualify any performer (such as destroying the stage).
    • One of the last things shown in the epilogue is a redeemed Croix being taken away by law enforcement to serve her sentence for her actions across the series. Turns out having a Heel–Face Turn doesn't make you immune to the law.

    T-V 
  • Take That!: Mild ones during "Akko's Adventure in Sucyworld". Among the several facets of Sucy's personality that appear just for a few seconds, there are "easily influenced Sucy", "quick-to-imitate Sucky" and "instant copycat Sucy". They are referencing Star Wars, Shin Godzilla, and Your Name, respectively, as if to imply that these films were huge successes just because the filmgoers were following mob mentality and not because they are good in and of themselves.
  • The Teaser: The TV series usually uses cold openings, aside from "Pact of the Dragon" and "A Road to Arcturus", where the opening sequence starts before any preceding clip.
  • Technician vs. Performer: Diana and Akko fit this perfectly and before them, there was Croix and Chariot from the previous generation.
  • Tertiary Sexual Characteristics: All the sisters of the talking fish that Akko helps in "Orange Submariner" 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 "Undead Travelogue" is none other than... himself.
  • Together in Death: Headmistress Holbrooke's parents in the ending of "Undead Travelogue".
  • Translation Convention:
    • Spoofed when Akko introduces herself to Andrew in "The Fountain". 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).
    • Oddly enough, in "Papiliodia", Akko is seen playing with her personal set of cards with Sucy and Lotte, despite the text of the cards are in Japanese and the later two aren't from Japan.
  • Unicorn: A mythical creature associated with the Cavendish family, which ties into their long history and tendency towards healing magic.
  • Vacation Episode: "Pohjola's Ordeal" 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.
  • Vitriolic Best Friends: Akko, Andrew and Diana generally develop this dynamic with each other, as while they're always prone to arguements, barbs and snark (especially for the latter two), their interactions become more friendly and playful as they come to care for each other and their worldviews.
  • Voices Are Not Mental: Akko finds herself turned into a duplicate of Diana, complete with Diana's voice.

    W-Y 
  • Wall Pin of Love: Played with in "Bee Affection". When Andrew pins Akko while under the influence of the Lovelove Bee, Akko freaks out and runs away instead of being charmed.
  • Waterfall Puke: The reaction of the teacher at the culinary magic exam, when she examined an apple bewitched by Akko through eating.
  • We Used to Be Friends: Croix and Chariot were the best of friends in their school days. Their relationship soured after Croix was consumed by jealousy and Chariot was distracted by her magic shows.
  • Weird Moon: Has a giant four-pointed star carved into it, caused during Chariot's last magic show.
  • Weird Trade Union: The fairy laborers of Luna Nova School form a union in "New Age Magic" and go on strike to gain a greater share of the energy output of the Sorcerer's Stone, they install magic reflecting boards around it stopping all magic on campus. Akko tries to berate them out of it... and winds up not only switching to their side but ends up becoming their General Secretary. When Diana tries to do the same thing Akko was aiming to do, Akko calls her a member of the bourgeoisie.
  • Wham Episode:
    • "What You Will" 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.
    • "Chariot of Fire": Croix reveals her as the Big Bad 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.
    • "Cavendish": 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.
    • "Things We Said Today" basically turns the entire series on its head. Shiny Chariot's magical show, the thing that made Akko want to be a witch in the first place, was also the reason why she is unable to perform magic properly. Croix tricked Chariot into absorbing the magic potential from her audience in order to use it as magical fuel to save the magic world, but this backfired and, for reasons yet unexplained, Chariot blew up the moon's surface. Croix then wiped the audience's minds and Chariot assumed the identity of the meek Professor Ursula to atone for what she'd done. If all that wasn't enough, Croix is about to get a war started for the sole purpose of harvesting anger from the people and using it as magical fuel of the Noir Rod, basically repeating what Chariot did 10 years before, but with much harsher consequences. Akko, who idolized both Chariot/Ursula and Croix before learning all this, takes it about as well as the audience.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?:
    • What happened to the giant squirrel in "Bee Affection"?
    • It's left unclear what became of Chariot and Woodward's relationship with each other, following the revelation that the ancient witch was responsible, albeit indirectly, for Croix's actions.
  • What Kind of Lame Power Is Heart, Anyway?: That's usually the response many people had towards Akko and her love for Shiny Chariot and childish dreams in general. Ironically, it's that mentality is what prevents magic from prospering in the modern world.
  • What You Are in the Dark: Episode 24 shows who Woodward and Chariot really are when the second Quest for the Seven Words seemingly failed.
    • Woodward chooses to disappear and take the Grand Triskellion with her, abandoning both Chariot and Croix, showing how much important magic is to her over the lives of her students.
    • Chariot ultimately chooses to protect Akko as well as Croix from further harm, showing that her responsibilities for her friends far exceeds anything else.
  • When the Planets Align:
    • A ceremony to crown the head of the Cavendishes and grant her access to the family's ancestral magic can only occur during a lunar occultation of Venus (Venus passing behind the moon).
    • This is one of the requirements of the Greenman disease to manifest. Unlike the Cavendish Family ritual, this one seems to be listed just to emphasis how ridiculous the conditions the Greenman disease needs to manifest (which includes the amount of CO 2 exhaled at that exact moment and a specific tart being baked at an exact temperature).
  • White-and-Grey Morality: The series goes this way as well. Akko is an All-Loving Hero who uses her magic to make her friends safe and happy; in fact, her magic is created by her desire to make others happy. Virtually no character is truly evil or even a complete Jerkass. Even Croix, the Big Bad, winds up undergoing a Heel–Face Turn by the end.
  • The Wild Hunt: The TV series' Affectionate Parody version makes the Wild Hunt into a sports event, apparently the magical equivalent of the Super Bowl. The hunters ride around on wolves destroying "ghosts," i.e. vaguely human-shaped blobs of unclear origin. None of the main characters is officially part of the Hunt, but Constanze and Akko help attack the phantoms with the former's magitek airship, while Croix sneakily boosts the enemies' power with her own technology.
  • Wizards Live Longer: The witches are implied to live very long lives. After relatively normal schooling in their teens, they can live hundreds of years. Headmistress Holbrooke looks like she's in her early 50s at most and is well over 200 years old—one hint of this is that her late father (whom Akko and her friends accidentally bring Back from the Dead) was buried in what looks like a bright red, Napoleonic-era military uniform.
  • Womb Level: The climax of "Samhain Magic Festival" takes place in the belly of Vajarois after Akko, Lotte, and Sucy are Swallowed Whole.
  • 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.
  • World Tree: Yggdrasil is the source of all magic fueled by people's belief. It thrived in the Golden Age of Magic but has largely disappeared in the Modern Era. In the Grand Finale, Akko and Diana using the World Reconstruction Magic to destroy the Noir Fuel Spirit Missile, combined with their inspiring people around the globe with the act, is implied to have revived it.
  • You Are Not Alone: The elusive seventh and final word to awaken Claíomh Solais is found by realizing this. Chariot and Croix never found it because they thought obtaining the World Reconstruction Magic was something to be done on their own, but when Akko has the humility to admit it was help and inspiration from others that made her stronger, she is acknowledged by the Grand Triskelion and given the magic. After all, one person can't change the world. They can only inspire the world to change.
  • Your Princess Is in Another Castle!: "A Road to Arcturus" ends with Croix surrendering and Akko finding the seventh word and discovering the restoration magic. However, there's the looming threat of a Magitek nuke.

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