Magical Girl Raising Project: Jokers is the seventh light novel in Asari Endou’s Magical Girl Raising Project series. Unlike Limited, which came before it, this entry in the series is all contained in a single volume.
What makes a magical girl special?
Sakura Kagami is just an ordinary girl, and her magical-girl persona, Prism Cherry, is just as ordinary, too. After the same old tired routine of saving people with her boring magic in a peaceful town, Sakura learns that her classmate, Nami, is also a magical girl. The two of them become fast friends, but it doesn’t take long before the veneer of magical-girl-hood falls apart to reveal something more sinister than they’d ever anticipated.
A new entry into the Magical Girl Raising Project brings along with it a new group of magical girls, and I honestly don’t think there has ever been a single miss when it comes to character designs.
Something particularly notable about the Jokers magical girls, though, is that four of there number are different compared to every other magical girl that has been introduced so far.
This group of four magical girls: Princess Deluge, Princess Quake, Princess Inferno and Princess Tempest, collectively refer to themselves as the Pure Elements. They are central to the plot of Jokers, as their existence is what causes many different magical girls to gather in one place.
As this is Magical Girl Raising Project, a gathering of magical girls results in many casualties. When death comes, it come swiftly and often without buildup. As with the previous light novels, there are some real gut punches here.
Whilst the main focus is on the gathering of magical girls and the Pure Elements, there is another plot that has been more or less in the background over the course of the previous few light novels. This is presented as interludes between chapters, and some very familiar faces are involved.
I feel that this is building up towards something quite spectacular, so that’s something to look forward to.
As with the other entries in the series, there isn’t really a single magical girl you could call the main protagonist in Jokers. The story is told by jumping between the points of view of the different characters. Of course this includes the many magical girls, but also a certain mascot character, too.
Lots of great characters in Jokers. For a start, the Pure Elements feel more like your more typical magical girls, with their uniform appearance, special moves and even a super mode.
Marika Fukuroi and Stanczyka are another couple of stand out magical girls, at least to me. Marika is a battle-crazed flower girl who has quite a reputation, whereas Stanczyka is a mute jester.
Suppose it would be remiss of me to not mention Prism Cherry. She’s… ordinary. That is something she is acutely aware of, and seeks out something special. That’s exactly what she gets from meeting Princess Deluge. Turns out that special something is also incredibly dangerous.
I also feel like the yuri content has increased ever so slightly in Jokers. It may be nothing more than nods to it, but I’ll go through a few examples.
We have vampire-themed magical girl Lady Proud, who seems to be extra attached the umbrella-wielding Umbrain.
Styler Mimi constantly finds herself going along with Marika Fukuroi, even though she claims to hate doing that.
Princess Deluge and Princess Inferno acknowledge an indirect kiss between each other, and Princess Quake is a lolicon.
Jokers is yet another excellent entry into the Magical Girl Raising Project series. I would absolutely love to see each and every one of the light novels adapted into anime, and that feeling only intensifies with each volume I read.
There would be some very nice surprises for those who have only seen the anime adaptation of the first light novel (which also adapted parts of Episodes).