Saturday, September 16, 2006

Magical Girl Transformation Sequence Done Right...Done Spicy

It's been so long since the idea was recommended to me that I've forgotten who originally recommended it, and I only remember that I shared the idea with my friend and coworker Nate very shortly after. Nate beat me to task, and the idea was to do a brief write-up on our very own magical girl transformation (MGT) sequences.

Here’s the deal: in anime there is a particular genre sometimes called “magical girl” that involves the main character, usually female, having special powers. Invoking these powers usually means a very long and drawn out sequence of fan-fare and special effects, and it usually represents the most expensive animation for the series and is shown at least once every episode. The most familiar example would of course be Sailor Moon’s transformation sequence, with all of its ribbons and blurry background speed-lines and dramatic music and you get the idea. I had wanted to photoshop up a nice image to show my MGT, but I have taken so long to do this already, which is unfair to Nate, that I’ll just add it sometime in the future.

Being a link to Nate’s blog, this sentence reveals a description of his MGT. As for myself:

All is quite. All is very quiet, in fact, one wouldn’t even say you could hear a pin drop because the pin knows better. Either narration of some omniscient presence, or a comment of my own has let my enemies, my teammates, indeed, all of the surrounding on lookers know that I’m about to transform in to something absurdly bad ass.

Silence is broken with a menacing sound of string instruments in 5/4 time slowly crescendoing as Holst’s Mars: Bringer of War begins to play from jerry-rigged telecom satellites, commandeered and transformed into giant speakers through will alone. Swarms of African Grey parrots fill the sky chanting in unison to the dramatic score, “dah-nah-nah-nah, dah, dah… dah-nah-nah-nah dah dah” in a perfectly mimicked voice of Bea Arthur (African Greys can mimic human voice almost perfectly so the on-lookers have no problem believing this). The swarms of birds are so thick that they begin to block out the dark clouds that have been forming, which had been beginning to block out the sun, which had been moving in to an eclipse.

In most magical girl transformations, the hero usually has some sort of incantation or title to her powers that she feels the need to share, but since it’s usually only a couple words long, and since the transformation needs to take a long time to spend every drop of the special effects budget, this usually results in some milking along the lines of Sailor Moon pushing her breath capacity to the limits:

“MooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooOOOOOOOOOOOONNNNN ……… pooooooooooooooooooowwwwweeeeeeeeeeeeeeeRRRRRRRRRRRRRSSSSSSS ………” and so on.

No such bullshit here. In order to make full use of the time, all along I’ve been reciting Benedick’s soliloquy on bachelorism from Oscar Wilde’s Much Ado About Nothing. Just as I’m about to reach the last line in the dialogue the ground beneath us begins to violently shake. I act surprised, but that’s just for show since I of course know what’s coming. Without warning...Holst’s Mars: Bringer of War becomes Queen’s Don’t Stop Me Now, and Moai statue heads burst from the ground firing bright blue beams from their eyes in to the surrounding crowds. As each individual is lanced by the terrible azure light, their clothing is transformed in to fabulous sequenced slacks, jackets, and top hats and everyone falls in to formation to perform a spectacular musical number choreographed to Queen’s exciting and upbeat music with occasional jazz tap solos by people whom I favored over others for no particular reason.

Near the end of the act, an old woman strangely resembling Maggie Smith descends from the heavens in a rocking chair to fashion me a fresh costume from her seamstress tools. Just as she’s finished, and throws me down the costume, the old seamstress strangely resembling Maggie Smith bursts into a small nova of rainbow confetti, so thick that I am able to change in to my costume without compromising the entire sequence’s PG-13 rating.

Completely avoiding the fight, I convince my enemies to surrender under the threat that I have an entire arsenal of exploding old women who resemble famous British actresses that explode with more than just rainbow confetti.

The entire production having then seemed to be for naught, many on-lookers return home disappointed and a little angry that they didn’t transform out of their gilded costumes automatically and back in to their street clothes.


Blogger Zeroes said...

Dangit, now I want a maigcal girl sequence of my very own. I'm thinking something shiny and emo.

11:49 AM  

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