Negima! Manga Vol 38 Ch 348 Review

魔法先生 ネギま!Volume 38 Chapter 348 (manga)
Mahou Sensei Negima! Manga Chapter 348
Negima! Manga Vol 38 Ch 348

SPOILER Summary/Synopsis:

Negima! Manga Vol 38 Ch 348Negi and Asuna find themselves confronted by Ako, Yuuna, Makie, Yue, Paru, and Nodoka. Yuuna demands to know whom it is that Negi likes, and even Asuna finds herself curious. Negi senses an attack from above and warns Asuna, who looks up to see Kaede and Natsume about to stealth-snag her as they’d done to others who’d helped Negi. Asuna is not amused and nullifies Kaede’s artifact’s pocket dimension, so Yuuna tells the others to attack. None of the magic-based attacks reach Asuna, nor can Nodoka’s diary read Asuna’s thoughts.

Paru states that they’ll have to bring out their own demon and empress, so Zazie arrives in costume with her spirit creatures. She warns Negi to get serious since her strength is about the same as her sister’s.  Negi thinks she’s being too serious, but she cheerfully disagrees, saying she needs to help her classmates from time to time.

Takahata-sensei approaches and scolds Asuna, asking for her artifact. She gives it up without thinking as Fuuka and Fumika get a rope snare around Asuna’s ankle and she’s flung up and then held dangling, upside-down. With Negi distracted by this and Zazie, Natsumi sneaks Ako in, where she injects his butt with medicine to disorient him. Chizuru appears and summons her artifact, a wand/scepter in the shape of a large negi (green onion), which when stabbed into a person, causes them to recover from all ailments or status effects but also causes them to be susceptible to anything she says.

With that, she stabs Negi is the butt and lifts him up off the ground.  After putting him back down again, Setsuna prevents Asuna from helping while Chizuru asks the controlled Negi whom he likes most. He resists, so Zazie tells her to ask again since his resistance comes in part from being Chizuru’s master and part from his own high magic resistance and willpower. She asks again, but again, Negi resists. The dangling Asuna asks if everyone is OK with forcing this out of Negi, especially taking time to ask Yue and Nodoka. Yuuna ants her to shut up and Zazie tells Chizuru to do it once more since no one can withstand three times.

Asakura alerts the other involved girls in the class so they can witness this via her artifact and again, Chizuru asks the question and Negi starts giving a hesitant answer, delaying long enough for Yue and Nodoka to take action. Yue casts a combination lightning attack with smoke screen and with Nodoka using her artifact to read everyone, the two make their escape with Negi. Paru and Yuuna are stunned by the betrayal but launch a pursuit with Zazie in tow.

Akira intercepts the fleeing Yue and Nodoka to have them hide in an alley. She explains that Kotaro and the others helped her escape. Nodoka and Yue decide they will become decoys, but first, they have Akira pull Chizuru’s artifact out of Negi’s butt. The two take off and Negi wakes up with a sore butt. Akira explains some of what’s going on and as they talk, she asks about whom Negi likes. A flustered Negi says he shouldn’t have said anything since he can’t respond to everyone’s feelings. Akira understands and says that she thinks everyone is happy that Negi has someone he likes, and that he should treasure those feelings and let them grow.

Chamo arrives, pressing Akira on the fact that she does want to know whom Negi likes. She denies his assertion that she could be the one Negi likes and further states that while she’s interested in Negi, its not in “that” way. Chamo decides it is time for Akira and Negi to kiss, reminding how close Akira came to doing it back in the Magic World. Since Akira is charged with protecting Negi and Chamo was easily able to find her, the others will too. Thus, he proposes a pactio to help protect Negi.

Thoughts/Review:

I know that there are many who will not be happy with this chapter at all, but for me, there’s lots of win to be found here as well as other points of interest.

Akamatsu-sensei again reminds us of how Asuna has become dues ex machina in being able to easily see through Natsumi’s artifact and nullify Kaede’s artifact (for now).  She then resisted all magical and artifact attacks and basically is the invincible shield.  I laughed out loud at Yuuna’s translated response, asking Asuna “Which hell did you crawl out from?!”  *lol*

Still, Akamatsu-sensei does provide a means for taking out Asuna — the simplistic approach.  Basically, that’s how she was removed from the Magic World arc — Shiori kissed her and “became” Asuna. Now, its gone to Paru’s improved artifact usage to fool Asuna long enough to get caught in a snare trap. I still think Asuna will be “put into the machine” before the next serious arc to remove her deus ex machina factor from the story, but we see that even she has an Achilles’ heel. (Now that I recall it, Nagi took the simplistic approach to defeat the very powerful Eva, showing that brains over brawn is sometimes the answer.)

Zazie’s entrance was epic. “Poyo-oneesama?”  *lol*  I know we fans, both Western and Japanese, were calling Zazie’s sister “Poyo” based on how she ended many of her sentences, but for Zazie to actually address her older sister as such was amusing to me.  There’s a lot more to Zazie/Poyo than we know at present, or so it seems to me.  They may, in fact, be the same person, just manifestations on different planes (Earth, Magic World, Mazoku Realm).

Negima! Manga Vol 38 Ch 348

Still, it was really awesome to see the previously, reserved and quite Zazie cheerful, chatty, and really getting into this game.

Chizuru might be the most motherly girl in the class, but I say that SHE’S the final boss. ^_~

Negima! Manga Vol 38 Ch 348

Nodoka and Yue are the true Dynamic Duo as far as I’m concerned. I have really loved how far these characters have come.  Everyone came out of the Magic World arc with different experiences, but I think Yue and Nodoka being forced to be away from Negi and company and in places where they had to deal with life-or-death situations on their own (well, with the help of their companions, but without the normal support of Negi, Asuna, Setsuna, or other powerful Ala Alba member) caused them to grow a lot.

Nodoka may never be a powerful mage, but her courage and decisive nature just rocks.  She and Yue are on the same page, something we’ve seen for ages. It used to be Yue having to force Nodoka to move ahead (along with Paru), but now, she and Yue are on the same page.  That started during the summer festival just prior to the Magic World arc, where the two worked together to prevent Yuuna and company from grabbing their badges. Back then, Nodoka had the advantage because Yue’s power was limited.  Now, they are a right-hand, left-hand combination.

And speaking of the other half of that combination, Yue’s mage abilities are just sweet.  Imagine how much more awesome she’ll be as a mage when she returns to the Magic World to resume her formal training?  Granted, I’m sure she continues to practice on Earth and her artifact would allow her to train herself. However, nothing beats formal training and first-hand experience. I hope that in the next chapter, we get to see more of these two schooling Paru and Yuuna.

Then there’s Akira. It does appear that she’ll finally get her pactio, and with that, we should gain an understanding of why Akamatsu-sensei held off on giving it to her on the Magic World (other than marketing reasons).  I like her being more involved in things and I’m glad Akamatsu-sensei found a way to do this.

As to Chamo…*lol*  Boy, when it comes to a pactio, he sure makes tracks and gets to the spot in a hurry. ^_^  Of course the sad part is that once all of the girls have their pactiones, we know the manga is getting much closer to the end.

Finally, I wanted to again address fandom issues with this current story arc.

I. This arc is not advancing the plot and is a waste of time.

Akamatsu-sensei has always used light-hearted and comedic moments to introduce foreshadowing elements and establish certain powers or abilities in a non-critical situation.  I see more of the same going on here.  We see that the girls are becoming better with their artifacts.

  1. Yue uses her artifact broom.
  2. Nodoka is tracking multiple targets without multiple books and apparently without her other magic artifacts to aid her.
  3. Yuuna can now seal magical abilities for a short period of time.
  4. Paru has become even better with her drawn golems in fooling people.
  5. Ako can not only boost people’s abilities, but can also disorient people. There’s probably more she can do.
  6. Natsume and Kaede, working as a team with their artifacts, can overcome everyone except Asuna.
  7. Chizuru’s artifact gets its debut and she can interrogate people as well as heal them or remove status effects.  Sounds like her artifact is the perfect counter to Shiori’s or Al’s disguise abilities.

I feel that all of this will come up in the next serious arc and when the girls can use these improved abilities, it isn’t a surprise, nor a “deus ex machina” moment because the elements were introduced now.

II. The girls are regressing to how they were before the Magic World arc.

Folks seem to forget that the girls in Negi’s class are in their third year of middle school/junior high school.  What is on the mind of most girls that age?  Is it serious, life-or-death issues?  Or is it things like boys?  Popularity?

Yes, many of the girls that were with Negi on the Magic World experienced a life-or-death situation as they attempted to escape. Some were quite heroic.  That was then.

Now, the events of the Magic World and the effects are wearing off.  At 14-15, even though you may subconsciously know that one day you will die, the mentality is that you WON’T die today.  Mortality is something not taken seriously, even after witnessing it to some degree or other.  I remember when my lab partner from college got killed (manslaughter) in a STUPID altercation in a parking lot.  I was shocked and saddened by it, but at the end of the day, it really had no impact on how I lived my life.  There were lots and lots of tasty, available, single girls.  There was money to be made to pay for school and fun.

My point is that now that the girls have left the worries of the Magic World behind, the normal concerns of a teenage girl take priority.  The difference is that unlike normal girls, these girls have supernatural abilities thanks to magic or a magical artifact.  As such, they are able to use these to take their Negi desires to a level that’s not normal.  Heck, normally, girls like this wouldn’t be interested in a 10-year old boy, but I think they are all drawn to the massive amount of power that radiates off of him, thus overcoming the normal tendencies of girls their age.

With that being the case, are the girls acting any different?  Has not Paru always been at the heart of Negi’s girl issues with the class, starting with Nodoka?  Now that she’s not tasked with returning to the real world, she naturally returns to the role she’s always had.  Ditto the other girls except for Yue and Nodoka.  As I stated earlier, I think their experiences on the Magic World were such that the impact on them was much greater than the other girls.  Even then, they still have a track record of going against the grain and blazing their own trail to achieve their objective.  Remember the Kyoto arc and the kissing contest?

So, the girls are being true to whom they are, and that’s not a problem.  They are young, teenage girls and are acting accordingly.

Now, having said all this, I would love to see Yuuna and Paru get punished heavily for their actions here and I’d really enjoy it if the punishers were Nodoka and Yue.

For me, I really enjoyed this chapter a great deal.

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25 Responses to “Negima! Manga Vol 38 Ch 348 Review”

  1. Kota-kun says:

    I was waiting for this, because…everybody seems to hate this chapter ^.^”

    I also enjoyed it, but found the ‘negi-spearing’ to be a little over-the-top.

  2. OverMaster says:

    Sorry, but I don’t think “acting like normal teenage girls” justifies “Forcing their teacher, the one who has done so many sacrifices for them” to confess his feelings against his will, when he’s only 10, and after a large amount of previous harassing, to boot.

    If you think having what doesn’t even amount to a month to forget all they should have learned in Mundus Magicus, good for you. But then let’s not place any hopes on them maturing and growing as characters ever, because if this hasn’t taught them to at least have the basic decency to respect Negi and his integrity, nothing will.

    At this point, they shouldn’t just be “normal teenage girls” (and “being a normal teenage girl” isn’t an excuse to act like a jerkass, in this real world or a fictional one. Like Asuna and Akira have proved. At least they have grown as characters, and deserve respect over it), because the manga isn’t getting any younger, and with the pace it’s taking, we’ll never see them actually maturing and delivering the emotional development payoff needed if we’re going to wait years for them to grow up physically as well. Unless Akamatsu goes for a time skip and they change off panel, which would be a gigantic cop-out.

    But most importantly, just like Negi and Asuna aren’t “just normal kids” anymore, neither should they. Granted, Negi was never exactly normal, and Asuna has the excuse of her unique condition, but it’s grating to see Akamatsu only allows them to mature while everyone is pushed back to Status Quo is God.

    Try to cover it with as many excuses and apologisms as you want, it doesn’t change the fact they should have matured “to some degree” instead of “nothing”. Haruna’s kind of an exception in that regard because she’s always been Comic Relief with all the emotional depth of a kiddie pool, and the girls who stayed behind, I’m okay with them involving themselves into this, but people like Setsuna, Kaede and Ako really should know better, really should be better comrades, and really should care more about Negi’s feelings than to force him to reveal them against his will.

    This is violation of privacy and personal intimacy, plain and simple. Hey Yuuna, how would you like if a group of women did this to your beloved Daddy?

  3. DreamTraveller says:

    Sincerest apologies- speaking as a person who doesn’t look upon this arc too fondly, I admire and respect your attempt at rationalising both its existence and the behaviour of the girls. But it all still doesn’t sit well.

    The list you’ve created is comprised of things that are almost entirely arbitrary. Yue’s used her broom? We’ve seen that before. Yuuna’s bullets can seal magic? We know that. Haruna can fool people with her golems? If memory serves, that happened as well. Nodoka can track multiple targets with a single book, instead of a few? The difference is minimal. Ako can disorient targets? In fairness, considering all that syringes are used for in real life, I think people could see that coming.

    The only real points you make are with Natsumi, Kaede and Chizuru, and I’m fairly sure that some thought that the combination of the former two would eventually come to pass.

    And as far as characters are concerned, well, the behaviour of some is justified. Haruna? Yeah. Asakura and Yuuna, too, for that matter, but everyone else?

    One of the problems that people have with this arc is that almost every single student except Asuna and a handful of others is in on this inane scheme. The premise is stupid enough, with almost the entire class assaulting their teacher just to find out a crush, even if something like this was officially sanctioned by the school, which makes me question even more things, but it’s who’s involved that’s striking nerves.

    You have Kaede and Natsumi, two of the most reasonable students there are, and who would ordinarily try to stop this, or at least assist Negi, probably, going around abducting anyone who tries to help him. You have Chizuru forcing mind control on her own teacher in an attempt to get him to reveal something utterly trivial. You have Nodoka and Yue going along with every single thing that has happened, and it takes Haruna being a dick to convince them otherwise, not to mention how they were roped into it by Haruna with no complaints. You have Setsuna, who regards Asuna as her best friend, going completely against how she should act to the extent of holding a blade to Asuna’s throat, and this is over a crush, mind.

    But the worst of it is the class’ attitude in general, how they’re attempting to bluntly violate their teacher’s private life, and how stupid some of them suddenly become in order to do so, forgetting that their teacher has more pressing things on his mind than a goddamn crush. Saying that 3-A are ‘acting like normal girls’ does not cut it. True, they should not walk away from the MW arc feeling constantly sombre, but they should have at least matured emotionally to a significant degree, to the point where many more students should have known when to fold them, especially the more senior Alba members.

    But hey, shoving leeks up asses takes more priority, I guess.

  4. Anonymous says:

    i have to go with anb.
    i enjoyed it even if it was a little over-the-top. i think of it as a training exercise before things get serious again.

  5. Ultimaniac says:

    I’m gonna say I’m halfway between agreeing with you and agreeing with OverMaster and DreamTraveller. I’m loving this arc so far and have really enjoyed the last several chapters. I agree that there’s nothing wrong with the girls not worrying about anything other than who likes who. Just because they went on such a grand adventure doesn’t mean they can’t have fun now that they’re back to their mundane Mahora lives.

    I don’t agree with

    “As such, they are able to use these to take their Negi desires to a level that’s not normal.” and “but I think they are all drawn to the massive amount of power that radiates off of him”

    Out of the group that went after Negi, only Nodoka, Yue, Makie and Ako deserve that kind of reasoning. Sure, they all look up to him and respect him a great deal but I don’t see Asakura, Zazie, Kaede, Chizuru, Natsumi, Yuuna or even Setsuna doing this because they’re hoping “Negi’s favorite” is one of them or something. There’s only one desire here; a desire to satisfy a curiosity.

    Akira says later on in the chapter that she thinks they’re all just happy for Negi because he’s sort of thinking of himself for once.

    I call BS on that.

    Being happy for him is fine, and being curious about who he has feelings for is okay too. But using all of these abilities to go against his own wishes, utilizing ever power at their disposal(including a top tier demon) to force him to do something he doesn’t want to do?

    I hesitate to use this word considering Negi’s own ability but what the girls were doing here is nothing short of bullying.

    We can reason that Negi’s not some vulnerable child and bullying doesn’t apply to someone like him, but when you bring in the combination of artifacts that allow you to approach him undetected, disable his senses so he can’t tell left from right, use full on mind control on him to make him do anything you want, then broadcast the outcome to everyone he knows, ANYBODY may as well be some lost vulnerable child waiting to be taken advantage of.

    Using the Kyoto event as an example is an empty argument. Negi wouldn’t have used ever fiber of his will to resist a kiss from one of the girls. If one of the girls besides Nodoka would have succeeded, the aftermath might’ve been “oh Negi sensei, we were just playing a little game.” No harm, no foul. Judging by how adamantly he was resisting Chizuru’s artifact, do you think a simple “teh heh, sowwy” would’ve been enough to make the whole thing blow over if they got their answer?

    Now I’m gonna agree with you again, Yuuna and Paru better have some punishment coming their way =)

    I really hope you have the time read all these WALLS OF TEXT cause I’m curious to see if you still stick with the girls XD

  6. I really enjoyed this chapter, but Chizuru went over the top. The established arc needed a break from the day-to-day fighting that Negi did for the past 3 months(remember, this timeline is back at around autumn of 2004…) although in fairness, there was a bit much done in the timeframe allotted.

    For instance… from the end of volume 9 to the beginning of volume 37 was the summer of ’04 alone! That’s a lot of information to be conveyed in… 7 years !!! To the real-world timeframe, this was overkill, but I can understand that magic was needed for the elements to be cohesive.

    Back on topic:

    I really wonder if Yuna will have the tables turned on her when Nodoka reads Mr. Akashi’s mind (Yuna’s father) to find out who she likes (and if that wasn’t enough, do that with other people too)! That would be hilarious XD!

    The fact that Secchan has betrayed Negi was also kinda funny! Now if only Secchan was the one in Negi’s position… *cough*Ko-*cough*-no *cough*-chan… =]

    speaking of which… Kono-Chan? Where r u? It seems like you have become a member of the MIA this last chapter!

  7. Anonymous says:

    I really can’t wait for the class to get their comeuppance.

    With Zazie telling Negi to take this seriously, I’m halfway expecting him to go into full-on “Thousand Master Death Stare” mode.

    As such, this arc would be the perfect opportunity to show the advantages of being the “master” in a Pactio contract. If Negi were smart, he’d:

    -Use “Abeat” to force his partner’s artifacts back into their card forms using his master Pactio cards.
    -Use “Flans Ex Armatio” to disarm them of said cards (and their clothes 😀 ).
    -Use his “Lightning Form” to steal their copies of the cards to prevent them from regaining their advantages (promising to give them back after the event is over).
    -Use “Nebula Hypnotica” to disable them long enough for him to escape and find some backup (or at least make it back to the dorms to gear up).

    It’s that simple, especially since they seem too dependent on their artifacts to win this one. It’d take out their big guns or at least cause disarray among the class. That would pretty much leave Zazie, Natsumi, Misora and Setsuna as the only ones left with Pactio artifacts.

    I have to agree with the majority and say that this chapter just makes the eventual payback that much sweeter. Teenage girls or not, abusing their powers and betraying his trust in them does NOT make their actions justifiable.

    Sure, Negi probably won’t do any of the stuff that I mentioned earlier or even feel like he’s being bullied, but the girls’ maturity levels are definitely backtracking here.

    I agree with OverMaster and DreamTraveller here. Yuna and Haruna are expected to be like this, but Kaede, Natsumi and Ako should have at least had some qualms against this interrogation.

    In the end, there better be some actual developments soon or this whole arc was just a drawn-out “Akira Pactio” story. =/

  8. bakakubi says:

    Great review again, and a really nice way to address the issues people are constantly complaining about this arc. I for one agree with all your points, its actually one for my favorite “non-serious” arc.

  9. Knives says:

    I suspect that Setsuna attitude has something to do with Konoka. She has not appeared yet, I suspect she wants to help Asuna that she had little time left and wants her to enjoy life before going to sleep so she must have asked Sechan to help girls in Negi confession.

    However this can make things worse because Asuna has already accepted the facts but discover Negi feelings for she would be sad because he would be alone while she sleeps.

  10. arimareiji says:

    There have been a few incidents that I have gotten royally pissed over, chief among them the antics of Paio. (attempted rape = NOT FUNNY.) But this chapter isn’t one of them.

    I didn’t think it was especially funny by comparison to other chapters, but it had its moments (go Nodoka and Yue!)… and jumping on people for liking it seems a bit disproportionate.

    ~~~

    A couple of random thoughts:

    * Could Chizuru’s artifact be used to cure the residents of Negi’s village? (“all status ailments.”)

    * Wasn’t Yue’s artifact was a magic encyclopedia, rather than a broom? =/ The impression I got from the broom race in the Magic World was that they’re kinda like the brooms in the Potterverse.

  11. Krono says:

    I enjoyed this chapter. Yeah the girls have taken things kind of over the top, but but it’s not like them taking things over the top is unusual. Plus I view Negi’s current harassed state as karmic pay back for treating the girls like dirt since his return from the magic world, so my sympathy for him is decidedly thin.

  12. Anonymous says:

    @Krono

    How exactly did Negi mistreat the girls?

    By not keeping constant contact with them? For not involving them in the terraforming plan? One of the goals of the magical world arc was to get his class home. Now that he’s accomplished that, Negi doesn’t want to bother them with his problems so he’s letting them get back to their daily lives while he and a select few focus on the terraforming project.

    If this were A.I. Love You or Love Hina, it’d be understandable how the male protagonist would be wrongfully accused. But this is the 10 year-old genius wizard who doesn’t want to involve his students if at all possible being taken advantage of by his “partners” who he trusts enough to let them keep a copy of the contract he was with them. I don’t understand how Negi deserves any of this abuse. In a sense, it’s a bunch of older girls gang-banging a prepubescent boy. There’s no “karmic payback” if he doesn’t or can’t know any better in the current timeframe.

  13. AstroNerdBoy says:

    I also enjoyed it, but found the ‘negi-spearing’ to be a little over-the-top.

    *lol* Yeah, but there were some who wanted to see it ever since the Graf Herrman arc. ^_~

    Sorry, but I don’t think “acting like normal teenage girls” justifies “Forcing their teacher, the one who has done so many sacrifices for them” to confess his feelings against his will, when he’s only 10, and after a large amount of previous harassing, to boot.

    I agree. However, a lot of things that teens do that are stupid cannot be justified. At my age, I can look back at my own years back then and think, “Man! How did I survive doing the stupid things I did back then?” I can’t justify my actions, but in my mind back then, I did justify them. I see the girls here as justifying their actions because they’ve laid out their case. You may not like it, and understandably so, but it doesn’t discount the fact that these girls are behaving as normal. ^_^

    If you think having what doesn’t even amount to a month to forget all they should have learned in Mundus Magicus, good for you. But then let’s not place any hopes on them maturing and growing as characters ever, because if this hasn’t taught them to at least have the basic decency to respect Negi and his integrity, nothing will.

    Not everyone matures at the same rate. The person I was back in my junior high days is still a part of me today. The maturing process didn’t happen overnight.

    I’m not sure how old you are, but for me, there have been more than enough years that have passed that I can easily see how dumb my actions were (and those of my friends). Teen logic is not the same as adult logic. I used to get so angry with my parents when they’d say something like, “When you grow up, you’ll realize how unimportant ‘X’ or ‘Y’ is. When you get into the real world, no one is going to care if you were the most popular person in high school. No one is going to care if you were wearing the ‘cool’ jeans or the ‘cool’ sneakers.” Of course, they were right and the things that were SOOOO important back in the day are a laugher today.

    At this point, they shouldn’t just be “normal teenage girls” (and “being a normal teenage girl” isn’t an excuse to act like a jerkass, in this real world or a fictional one.

    And yet, I’ve seen people into their 20’s being a “jerkass” because they still haven’t grown up. Sadly, today’s education system has a lot to do with that, but my point is that even when people go through various hardships or the like, they don’t all respond the same way.

    Some are like Asuna or Akira (or Yue and Nodoka). Others are like Yuuna and Paru. It is part of the growing up process. In the end, I think that they will all grow up and become fine, young ladies who help Negi with his plans.

    …but people like Setsuna, Kaede and Ako really should know better, really should be better comrades, and really should care more about Negi’s feelings than to force him to reveal them against his will.

    In a group, it is easy to get swept along. And it isn’t the first time that Kaede has done this. I cite her actions during the Kyoto arc. At one point, she’s in the game, but seemingly to just help Ku Fei. At another point, she’s coming to Negi’s aid. So, one could say that she knows when to have fun and when to be serious. This is a “have fun” moment and a time to “be a kid.”

    This is violation of privacy and personal intimacy, plain and simple. Hey Yuuna, how would you like if a group of women did this to your beloved Daddy?

    And again, this could be something that happens that causes her to realize her errors. We grow the most by learning from our mistakes.

  14. AstroNerdBoy says:

    Sincerest apologies- speaking as a person who doesn’t look upon this arc too fondly, I admire and respect your attempt at rationalising both its existence and the behaviour of the girls. But it all still doesn’t sit well.

    And I totally understand that. I can see why it bothers so many people. I’m trying to get people to see passed their own anger and irritation, something which isn’t easy to do. ^_^;;;

    Yue’s used her broom? We’ve seen that before.

    Did she use her artifact broom? She may have, but I’m not remembering it. After all, she didn’t even learn to fly until the Magic World, where she had amnesia.

    Yuuna’s bullets can seal magic? We know that.

    I didn’t. The only other time she used her weapon was to shoot down projectiles. So, as I saw it back then, she, with the aid of Ako’s artifact, was able to target incoming projectiles in a manner that would make Mana proud. ^_^

    Haruna can fool people with her golems? If memory serves, that happened as well.

    It happened, but I see advancement in her skill at making it happen.

    Nodoka can track multiple targets with a single book, instead of a few? The difference is minimal.

    It shows her growing skill over her artifact.

    Ako can disorient targets? In fairness, considering all that syringes are used for in real life, I think people could see that coming.

    I see your point, but this wasn’t something mentioned with her artifact’s introduction. It was simply, “It gives a boost to folks.” So, the fact that she can use it for other things means she’s learned to use it better.

    One of the problems that people have with this arc is that almost every single student except Asuna and a handful of others is in on this inane scheme. The premise is stupid enough, with almost the entire class assaulting their teacher just to find out a crush, even if something like this was officially sanctioned by the school, which makes me question even more things, but it’s who’s involved that’s striking nerves.

    And this hasn’t happened before? How about when the rumors were flying that Negi was a prince? I think the whole class went after Negi at that time. Then, during the Kyoto arc, there was the “steal Negi-sensei’s lips” contest. The class has stripped Negi more than a few times. So as I see it, their actions here have a long history and aren’t unexpected based on that history.

    You have Kaede and Natsumi, two of the most reasonable students there are, and who would ordinarily try to stop this, or at least assist Negi, probably, going around abducting anyone who tries to help him.

    Kaede didn’t try to stop the kissing contest in the Kyoto arc. In fact, she was directly involved, though she seemed more about helping Ku Fei than being in it for herself. As I said earlier, Kaede knows when to have fun and when to be serious. This clearly is not a serious moment and considering how darkly serious Negi’s life will be, why not help with a bit of harmless fun?

    You have Chizuru forcing mind control on her own teacher in an attempt to get him to reveal something utterly trivial.

    Trivial to an adult. Not trivial to a bunch of junior high school girls. This aspect is what amazes me — apparently, everyone forgets how people act when they are kids. Maybe one needs more years between now and their junior high years, but back then, trivial stuff WAS the only important things in our lives.

    Regardless, I see everything these girls are doing as the actions of immature young teen girls with raging hormones and a kid teacher that has always seemed older than his appearance.

  15. AstroNerdBoy says:

    i have to go with anb.
    i enjoyed it even if it was a little over-the-top. i think of it as a training exercise before things get serious again.

    It is over-the-top, but for me, not unexpected. And yeah, it will be like training.

    “As such, they are able to use these to take their Negi desires to a level that’s not normal.” and “but I think they are all drawn to the massive amount of power that radiates off of him”

    Out of the group that went after Negi, only Nodoka, Yue, Makie and Ako deserve that kind of reasoning. Sure, they all look up to him and respect him a great deal but I don’t see Asakura, Zazie, Kaede, Chizuru, Natsumi, Yuuna or even Setsuna doing this because they’re hoping “Negi’s favorite” is one of them or something. There’s only one desire here; a desire to satisfy a curiosity.

    And that too is part of the young teen girl logic — hot gossip. *lol*

    Akira says later on in the chapter that she thinks they’re all just happy for Negi because he’s sort of thinking of himself for once.

    I call BS on that.

    Being happy for him is fine, and being curious about who he has feelings for is okay too. But using all of these abilities to go against his own wishes, utilizing ever power at their disposal(including a top tier demon) to force him to do something he doesn’t want to do?

    Ultimately, does not the reading audience want to know whom Negi likes? So in many ways, Akamatsu-sensei is having the class ask for the audience.

    Still, that doesn’t mean that Akira is wrong either.

    I hesitate to use this word considering Negi’s own ability but what the girls were doing here is nothing short of bullying.

    I would agree that this is the correct term, though Negi is more than capable of making them pay (though I doubt he does). There has been a lot of bullying in this series — Paru bullying Nodoka, Eva bullying Negi, the class bullying Negi at times, etc.

    Judging by how adamantly he was resisting Chizuru’s artifact, do you think a simple “teh heh, sowwy” would’ve been enough to make the whole thing blow over if they got their answer?

    Well, I think that this will come into play later on during a serious arc, where we’ll get to see Negi resist interrogation of some kind and we’ll have a basis for knowing how he’s able to do it (and this gives him experience dealing with it).

    But, considering teen girl logic, if they’d gotten their answer, I think it would have been something akin to what happened with Nodoka winning the kissing competition, only on a bigger scale. “Negi likes HER? WHOA!”

    I really hope you have the time read all these WALLS OF TEXT cause I’m curious to see if you still stick with the girls XD

    Oh yeah. Meant to do this earlier, but I was in a REALLY tough Skyrim dungeon so…^_^;;; *lol*

  16. AstroNerdBoy says:

    The fact that Secchan has betrayed Negi was also kinda funny! Now if only Secchan was the one in Negi’s position… *cough*Ko-*cough*-no *cough*-chan… =]

    You know, I’ve thought about Setsuna’s involvement and Konoka’s abstaining, and I suspect that (1) Setsuna may be there at Konoka’s request and (2) Setsuna may believe that Negi likes Asuna and vice versa, therefore it is time to get it out in the open.

    As to Konoka being MIA, she may be the most mature one of all. ^_~

    Which reminds me, the end of the Mahora Festival arc had a brief fight over whom Negi hooked up with to produce Chao. So, this current arc is really just a continuation of that. ^_~

    As such, this arc would be the perfect opportunity to show the advantages of being the “master” in a Pactio contract. If Negi were smart, he’d:…

    True enough. However, at some level, he’s enjoying what’s going on as well (short of nearly being killed by Ku Fei).

    Teenage girls or not, abusing their powers and betraying his trust in them does NOT make their actions justifiable.

    Again, justification is not in the equation. Teenagers justify everything they do, even when there is no justification. “Teen logic.” ^_^

    Great review again, and a really nice way to address the issues people are constantly complaining about this arc. I for one agree with all your points, its actually one for my favorite “non-serious” arc.

    Thanks. ^_^

  17. AstroNerdBoy says:

    I suspect that Setsuna attitude has something to do with Konoka. She has not appeared yet, I suspect she wants to help Asuna that she had little time left and wants her to enjoy life before going to sleep so she must have asked Sechan to help girls in Negi confession.

    I agree.

    However this can make things worse because Asuna has already accepted the facts but discover Negi feelings for she would be sad because he would be alone while she sleeps.

    Yep.

    There have been a few incidents that I have gotten royally pissed over, chief among them the antics of Paio. (attempted rape = NOT FUNNY.) But this chapter isn’t one of them.

    I agree, though I notice I didn’t say much about it back in the day. ^_^;;;

    * Could Chizuru’s artifact be used to cure the residents of Negi’s village? (“all status ailments.”)

    I think it will be a combination of Chizuru and Konoka.

    Wasn’t Yue’s artifact was a magic encyclopedia, rather than a broom? =/

    Both. That’s why initially, it was seen as a starter mage set. The encyclopedia got more focus, but now that Yue can fly a broom, she can use her artifact broom, which is a big help IMO.

  18. AstroNerdBoy says:

    Plus I view Negi’s current harassed state as karmic pay back for treating the girls like dirt since his return from the magic world, so my sympathy for him is decidedly thin.

    @Krono

    How exactly did Negi mistreat the girls?

    By not keeping constant contact with them? For not involving them in the terraforming plan? One of the goals of the magical world arc was to get his class home. Now that he’s accomplished that, Negi doesn’t want to bother them with his problems so he’s letting them get back to their daily lives while he and a select few focus on the terraforming project.

    Yeah, but some of them are offended at being left out. I’m thinking most of them are offended because they’d all contributed and likely feel they could contribute again.

    However, Negi’s “don’t want to involve my students” attitude has always been a problem. He’s always had a problem with that aspect despite how many times Asuna has beaten him over it and despite how many times Negi has been shown he cannot do this alone.

    I’m not saying Negi deserves this, but Negi does need reminding that he’s not alone.

  19. arimareiji says:

    Wow. I’m amazed at the detail and care in your responses, ANB. Thank you for taking the time. (^_^)

    ~~~

    In a sense, it’s a bunch of older girls gang-banging a prepubescent boy.

    Neh, that was chapter 18. Or to be more accurate, I guess I should say “especially” chapter 18. (^_^);

  20. AstroNerdBoy says:

    Wow. I’m amazed at the detail and care in your responses, ANB. Thank you for taking the time. (^_^)

    You’re welcome. ^_^

  21. I really liked this chapter. I’m not understanding either the hate the current arc is getting nor the seeming desire from a lot of people for Negima to end soon. The first group seems to want everything to be 100% grimdark/plot exposition, while the second group I would assume is simply lacking the desire and motivation to follow the series for the long haul (it has been running for about 9 years now), but I’m guessing this happens to some followers of every long runner.

    As for me, I like the current arc. It’s a nice, fun breather from the constant action and angst of the Magic World arc, but it also shows up how much the girls have improved in their abilities and teamwork as it also is developing the romance subplot a bit (not a whole lot of time for “Who does Negi like?” when you’re trying to save the world).

    And Kotaro’s fear of Chizuru is definitely justified. O_O;

  22. Oh, and I agree with ANB about how the girls are acting. They’re teenagers! Teenagers do stupid things. Let them have their fun. They don’t have many years left of being kids. In fact, we forget that Negima takes place in 2003, so all the girls are like 23 or 24 now, and Negi himself is 19 (calendar age, anyway; resort & scroll time + immortality, and all). At least they’re having their fun and not trying to be all serious. A lot of people are in such a rush to grow up, but when they are grown up they miss being kids. I know I sometimes wish I was 8 instead of almost 32. Of course, some people never grow up, like a 60-year-old man who tried to pick a fight with me in Wal-mart’s parking lot because he almost hit me while he was trying to cut across lanes.

    The characters of Negima have plenty of time to “grow up” and be all serious business adults. Let’s enjoy watching them have their fun and enjoy the ephemeral period that is childhood.

  23. AstroNerdBoy says:

    I really liked this chapter. I’m not understanding either the hate the current arc is getting nor the seeming desire from a lot of people for Negima to end soon. The first group seems to want everything to be 100% grimdark/plot exposition, while the second group I would assume is simply lacking the desire and motivation to follow the series for the long haul (it has been running for about 9 years now), but I’m guessing this happens to some followers of every long runner.

    In many ways, it reminds me of the outcries from TM!R OVA 3. There, it was easier to understand the dislike because by the fourth episode, I was one angry fan. However, when it ended, I had an “all’s well that ends well” attitude.

  24. Thank you for all of these detailed responses, reviews and images, ANB! I really have enjoyed these responses and look forward to seeing much more!

  25. […] as I mentioned in my review of chapter 348, this arc allowed the girls to basically have a training exercise in a situation that isn’t […]

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