Magical Circle Guru Guru (2017) Preview
Synopsis: Nike, a boy from the Boering Village village, is forcefully sent along on a quest to defeat the Devil King after his Hero-worshipping parents see a posting from the king summoning potential heroes. Following the village’s traditions, he visits the magical old lady where he is entrusted with caring for a young girl named Kukuri, who can use the mysterious Guru Guru magic. According to the old woman’s claims, Kukuri is the last survivor of the Migu Migu clan who wield Guru Guru, and she has been waiting for a Hero to appear. (Official Crunchyroll Synopsis)
Review (Warning: Minor Spoilers to Follow):
Don’t let Magical Circle Guru Guru’s childish animation designs fool you! There’s a story here that’s aimed at all ages and audiences and I don’t mean it in just the family friendly way. It’s one of those shows that is aimed at older children but contains humour that appeals to even older audiences as well…in fact, some of the jokes in it might make more conservative parents shake their heads in disapproval. Mind you, these jokes aren’t extremely perverted, but they do have a tinge of inappropriate tones to them, such as a scantily clad female vendor charming our young male protagonist into buying her wares.
For those that didn’t know or are confused by the 2017 after the title of the show, Magical Circle Guru Guru started as a manga that run between 1992-2003, received two anime adaptations, a movie and several games. What we’re reviewing here today is the third time the series has gotten an anime adaptation but have no fear if you are a complete newcomer to the world of Magical Circle Guru Guru. This latest adaptation of the series is a complete reboot that does not require you to have any prior knowledge or familiarity with the series to be able to enjoy it and I can guarantee that as someone who checked out the show having zero experience of all the material that came before it.
Magical Circle Guru Guru is described as a parody of early RPG games and tropes and that is noticeable from the start as right after the opening credits, the first episode features retro RPG style visuals for the first few minutes of storytelling. Then we are introduced to Nike, a young boy of 13 who just wants to live a good life while his parents are super determined and obsessed with turning him into a hero. The jokes come flying as the show lays out just how obsessive Nike’s parents are, going so far as to feeding him meals laid out as land maps for him to study and sending him off on his first reluctant adventure with a giant slingshot that his father made specifically for this purpose. Nike is the bitter and reluctant anti hero, while his new companion, Kukuri turns out to be an innocent yet eager adventurer who can barely cast a spell correctly. They’re both clearly lampooning the classic defining tropes of the brave and skilled heroes in RPG and they both provide plenty of laughs along the way.But it’s not just Kukuri and Nike that will have you in stitches, it’s also pretty much everything else about the show. From a shamelessly honest and self serving king to comical monsters that get suckered into delivering a monologue about their evil master plans, the jokes just keep on coming.
All the praising aside, there’s always a chance that Magical Circle Guru Guru might not be for everyone. The animation is very cute to look at, and that aesthetic might be an issue in and of itself for some. The animation is also not always the smoothest to look at, nothing even remotely deal breaking for the average viewer but maybe a potential hiccup for more demanding eyes. The show also has some scenes that employ the seizure preventive dimming self censorship which some people find a big distraction. And the fact that the characters look like little children mixed with some of the more adult jokes and content might not sit well with certain viewers. But these are minor complaints and Magical Circle Guru Guru has me convinced that anyone who’s a fan of old school RPGs and subversive comedy should find themselves being won over very quickly by the show.
Magical Circle Guru Guru (2017) is available for streaming via Crunchyroll.com