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Anime / Wizard Barristers

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Wizard Barristers is an anime television series directed by Yasuomi Umetsu and produced by the animation studio ARMS Corporation. It aired in Japanese televisions in 2014 as part of the 2014 Winter Season for 12 episodes. The show is licensed by Sentai Filmworks for a North American release and is also available for legal viewing via Crunchyroll. For French-speaking viewers, the show is streamed legally via Wakanim.

In a World… where a certain portion of the population have powerful destructive magical gifts, crimes committed by magicians are handled by a special Court of Magic, and the accused are defended by Wizard Barristers. Enter Cecil Sudo, a powerful wizard and the youngest Wizard Barrister ever, at 17. Cecil now begins her life investigating — and sometimes preventing — magic crimes for the Barrister firm, Butterfly.

Now has a character sheet. All tropes related to individual characters belong there.

This work contains examples of:

  • 20 Minutes into the Future: The show's set in 2018.
  • All There in the Manual: A prequel novel called Wizard Barristers Benmashi Cecil: The Beginning outlines what Cecil was doing in Canada prior to her relocation to Japan.
  • Amoral Attorney: The lawyers opposing Cecil in her first case. They are clearly smiling at the thought that an innocent guy was going to be executed.
  • Badass Normal: When you're not a wizard yourself.
  • Bland-Name Product: JAAL instead of JAL, VIZA card instead of VISA card, Moon Bucks instead of Starbucks and so on.
  • Bullying a Dragon: Wud users are commonly discriminated and bullied in society, including the lopsided legal system. This is one of the main reasons for them to snap and go on rampages. That includes you, Cecil.
  • Casting Gag:
    • This is not the first time for Marina Inoue, Kei Shindō, Rikiya Koyama and Rumi Ōkubo to be casted in significant roles in an Umetsu-made show.
    • Krystal LaPorte as Tsunomi Kabutohara since she's a known voice actor who's a law student and cosplays.
  • Chekhov's Gun: Cecil's hairpins are actually magical seals designed to suppress her magical power, so she won't draw Lucifer's attention. Too bad Moyo Tento has already laid its eyes on her.
  • Cop Killer: Numerous times, the National Police Agency finds itself losing police officers in the line of duty since none of them are magic users; the law does not allow anyone with magic powers to hold a public office.
  • Contrived Coincidence: Try keeping count of the numerous examples in episode 7. Turns out they weren't coincidences at all.
  • Dirty Coward: The cram schoolteacher in "Hero Show" after he promised to help his students escape, suddenly decided to abandon them. He got shot for his troubles.
  • Fantastic Racism: There's quite a bit of this against magicians. The fact that a lot of magicians like to use their vast destructive powers in order to commit crimes doesn't help.
  • Felony Misdemeanor: Megumi kills Oda to protect Cecil in self-defense and gets sentenced to death.
  • Feminist Fantasy: The features a Teen Genius that joins an Occult Law Firm. The cast is primarily composed of women who are professionals (lawyers, paralegals, investigators), who are almost universally powerful magic users as well.
  • Freeze-Frame Bonus: Each ending in the various episodes show the specific rules of the Anti-Magic Prohibition Law.
  • Good Lawyers, Good Clients: Defied in the first minutes of the show, when one of the cops asks why Butterfly took a case representing an obvious mass murderer when all it would do is damage their firm's reputation. The answer is that they're not in it for the money — implying that that means that it's their job to defend even the scummiest of scumbags.
  • Gone Horribly Right: Macal's plan of summoning Lucifer works, but this proves to be their downfall, since Lucifer doesn't care about Macal (or the relationship between humans and wuds) and has been living among humans for at least 6 years as Moyo Tento.
  • Hanging Judge: All judges are hanging judges in Court of Magic, due to extremely lopsided public opinion in wizardly crimes. The Wizard Barristers are there to defy some of their damage.
  • Hello, Attorney!: The folks at Butterfly sure are good-looking. This is discussed a few times. While barristers are supposed to be well-dressed, Cecil is criticized for looking like a teen idol/cosplay.
  • Hollywood Geography: In episode 7 they take a trip to America and land in Boston. Leaving the airport on the freeway, they are stopped at a checkpoint, with signs overhead from the Los Angeles area.
  • Humongous Mecha: Diabloids. Magic can be used to form these out of all of the metal in the immediate area.
  • Insistent Terminology:
    • Individuals who gained magic powers are called wuds. It even shows in their identity cards.
    • Cecil's outfit is a battle ensemble. Not a costume.
  • Jerkass: There's a cult of magicians doing some unsavory things and manipulating Cecil as part of a prophecy. Said cult also wants to summon Lucifer.
  • Jerkass Has a Point: Although this does not excuse the things they've done so far, to say that they aren't at least somewhat justified in their dissatisfaction over how mages are treated would be rather untrue.
  • Judge, Jury, and Executioner: Wizard Court doesn't have juries, and the judges have the authority to execute convicted defendants on the spot.
  • Limited Animation:
    • The original broadcast of episode 11, "Shining Cecil", suffers from this to an amazing degree. That is, the parts that were animated in the first place and not consisting of a still screencap with audio played over it or part of the opening fight scene, which is animated normally. Word of God confirmed that the episode aired in its original, unfinished state due to a lack of production time.
    • Completely averted when the series was released on home video and rebroadcast on Japanese TV, as the episode was completely reanimated.
  • MacGuffin: Grimoire 365.
  • Miscarriage of Justice: This happens quite often due to the dysfunctional law system that wizards are subject to. This is even lampshaded on episode 3, in which a defendant proclaims that she killed a man on purpose and because it wasn't premeditated, she got sentenced to life imprisonment, while the man she loved got sentenced to death because he was blackmailed into using magic and accidentally murdered someone.
  • Mythology Gag:
    • In terms of the similarities with the SAT officers who stormed the hijacked subway car, their assault gear is used by the SWAT team stationed at the ISSP in Kite Liberator.
    • A cosplayer assumes the role of Mikura from the Mezzo DSA series.
  • Occult Law Firm: The Butterfly law firm, appropriately enough, consists of barristers who specialize in defending wuds.
  • Reality Is Unrealistic: The discrimination against wizards seems over the top, but some of the restrictions on them apply to Korean descent citizens of Japan in real life, such as the ban on holding public management positions and voting.
  • Red Shirt: Any ordinary cop in the series is expected to not live.
  • Redshirt Army: The Special Assault Team is useless against high-level threats.
  • Running Gag:
    • Cecil always smacking around Nanagenie for being a pervert.
    • Cecil's choice of clothes being criticized.
    • Natsuna being annoyed at being called "Nacchi".
    • Koromo's threats to sexually harass Cecil just to grope at her breasts. And sexually harassing her co-workers for fun.
    • The firm getting fine penalties whenever the employees are forced to use magic to defend themselves or resolve a situation.
  • Shown Their Work:
    • The use of the term "Barrister." In the Britishnote  legal system, lawyers are split into two specialties: solicitors, who advise you in the office, and barristers, who represent your case at court.note  (Albeit barristers don't do investigating of their own, or have magic at their fingertips...)
    • In "Sword and Scales", Cecil rightfully protects herself from the police by correctly citing the laws against unreasonable search and seizure. In the same episode, it showed the proper way of addressing a Canadian zip code.
    • "Maple Leaf in Canada" features a surprisingly accurate illustration of the Davis Square transit station in suburban Boston. It also shows the English and French languages proper in a "Welcome to Canada" sign.
  • Superpower Lottery: Magic works this way. You can wind up with anything from clairvoyancy, to hyper destructive elemental powers, to being able to form a Humongous Mecha from the metal surrounding you. Multiple powers are rare.
  • Super Registration Act: The Magic Prohibition Law. Having a court system for wizards seems pretty realistic when you think about it. Without a wizard law system, they could probably just break out of prison, or kill the judges and the jury.
  • There Is No Higher Court: There's no point in a court of appeals when you're executed immediately after sentencing.
  • Wham Episode: Episode 11 reveals that Moyo Tento is Lucifer.
  • Wrong Genre Savvy: The police in the bank robbery case. They think a former bank teller who was present at the time and used his magic to play good Samaritan was actually in on the robbery, but simply got into an argument about something with the culprits, because he had been seen at the bank many times after being fired-almost like he was casing the place. It turns out that he just had a crush on one of his former coworkers and came by to see her. He was acting in legitimate self-defense.