While listening to several background music of the anime series Someday’s Dreamers, as usual it brought back nostalgic memories of the show. Although I can’t really remember much about it now even though it’s just been a few years. Ah, one of the few early online animes that I have watched and so far the only online anime which I watched the entire series English dubbed. That’s right. Back then I wasn’t that picky. Though I haven’t rewatched the series in Japanese audio with English subs, but I guess if I were to do so, I’d definitely still prefer the subs.
 
One of the main plus point of this soothing and calming slice of life series is its background music. So even if you are not keen of the visuals, at least you can have ear candy with the amazing pieces being played. Even when not watching the series, closing your eyes and listening to the pieces makes me feel calm and at ease. Like as though I don’t have to worry about tomorrow’s troubles. That effective? At least I feel that way.
 
The soundtrack album consists of 37 tracks including the TV version of the series’ ending theme. All the instrumental tunes are composed by Takeshi Haketa while the other themes (only 2, by the way) are performed by The Indigo. As usual, listed below are my favourite tracks from the album in alphabetical order:
 
1) Blue Sky Without A Cloud (Seiten Hakujitsu – Subete Wa Yo Kotomo)
2) Heart Of Ice – After You’ve Left (Koori No Kokoro – Kimi Sarishi)
3) In Flower Language It Is Love (Hana Kotoba Wa Aijou)
4) Kidokorone – Doze
5) Midnight Summer Dream (Manatsu No Yoru No Yume)
6) Poem Of Hope (Kibou No Shi)
7) Sincerely (Kokoro Wo Komete)
8) Where The Sky And The Earth Meet (Kono Sora To Daichi Deau Basho)
 
I know it’s not much but I guess these are the best tunes in my most humble opinion. Among the 8 tracks, Where The Sky And The Earth Meet is my favourite piece and I think is the series’ main theme. I like the way the song starts off with a very creative and nimble finger piano play. Then with the gradual introduction of the strings and flute, it gives the impression of a new life beginning. It may initially sound like a soft medieval carnival and later in the song you can hear children choir-like voices to compliment the piece.
 
Midnight Summer Dream is my next favourite piece and is mainly a slow piano-driven piece accompanied with slow strings. It evokes a feeling like, well, a midnight summer dream. I’m not saying that this song is a cure for insomnia but it makes me feel like wanting to descent into a comfortable and long slumber and dream. There will be choir-like voices as the song progresses and may give some impression that this is a choir organized by for some peace thingy or holy event. I think.
 
The rest of the piece seems like a variation, in which they actually are. Blue Sky Without A Cloud is a slow-moderate piano solo piece while Heart Of Ice – After You’ve Left sounds like it has a ‘heavier’ piano play. Though this piece with slow strings is another slow piece, there is a little hint of sadness in it. Not to say the entire song sounds sad, but at least the main tune does. In Flower Language It Is Love is a double acoustic guitar variation of Heart Of Ice – After You’ve Left piece. Also a slow and lovely piece.
 
The same case with Poem Of Hope. Just a variation albeit the piano solo play is slightly in faster tempo and the piece lasts shorter. Just over a minute or so. Sincerely is also a fast piano solo variation of Where The Sky And The Earth Meet. Kidokorone – Doze is a name which I still have trouble remembering. Don’t know why. However this song isn’t a variation and is a double acoustic steel string guitar piece. It gives an impression of a soothing fresh air countryside with the smooth and cool guitar pickings.
 
Other notable tracks in this album include Himawari ~Hikari Kaze Ni Kumarete (a slightly faster variation of Kodokorone – Doze but with piano as its lead and strings in the background), Kiniro No Hizashi (a dramatic piece using strings which gives a feeling of sunshine), Tomodachi (a flute variation of Where The Sky And The Earth Meet, giving a medieval carnival-like atmosphere), Pachanga No Hibi (just like Tomodachi, only livelier), Wasurenai (a slow guitar solo), Tsuki No Hikari No Shita (a slow harp version of Where The Sky And The Earth Meet) Kimochi Ga Mahou (a sad flute piece with the harp as accompaniment), Asagohan ~Kyou Mo Genki (a flute-based theme which gives an expression of waking up in a good morning), Pain -Itami- (a slow guitar solo piece with a little Latin feel), Netsuki Kyousou (a lively samba piece), Kappa No Kokyou (a fast paced flute carnival-like theme) Tokomademo Massugu Ni (a lively classical piece variation of Blue Sky Without A Cloud), and Mahou No Yukue (another slow guitar picking song giving like in those medieval-like times). The remainder 9 tunes of the album are short eye catches lasting approximately 10 seconds or so which you hear during the mid-intermission of the series.
 
I know some may think that after hearing this album, one may feel ripped off because even as I blogged this soundtrack, you’ll notice that a big majority of the pieces are just variations of either When The Sky And The Earth Meet or Midnight Summer Dream. Just change the tempo, beat or instruments and wahlah, you have a different song added. Partly I guess that’s why my list of favourite tracks in this album is just around 1/5 of the total. Furthermore, some of the songs have that medieval feel because of the flute instrument and the way it is being played. But nevertheless, I’m quite happy with the songs that I’m listening to and would definitely continue to enjoy listening them while being absorbed into my own world and dream.
 

Someday's Dreamers

Someday’s Dreamers

December 29, 2006

If you’re looking for another one of those animes where there isn’t any excessive bloody gore and violence or even nonsensical out-of-this-world jokes, then I suppose Someday’s Dreamers or Mahou Tsukai Ni Taisetsu Na Koto as it is known in Japanese, may seem a title worth checking out.
 
Just like when I watched Aria The Animation, I’ve got this mixed feelings of slow and boring but at the same time, also had that quite easy-going and calm mood. Yup, another in-between case. But unlike in Aria, this isn’t set on another planet nor is it in the distant future. Rather, the series takes place in a present day modern world but only this time, it’s filled with magic. Yes, magic. Don’t worry, there won’t be heavy magic using powers or super magic spells and effects like you see in all those adventure-fantasy movies.
 
It’s just enough to get by since there are only 12 episodes in this drama-cum-slice-of-life anime. Not too long and not too short. Okay, maybe 12 episodes is kinda short. But if you view it once per week, you’ll probably take 3 months to finish it (see, simple maths calculation) and that may seem a long time in anime terms due to the ever increasing number and amount of animes produced recently. So if you really take your time, you may miss out on other animes. But hey, don’t rush this one. Just watch it at a moderate pace.
 
As mentioned earlier on, as it is set in a parallel world, though magic exists in this world, not everybody can use them. Those who can use them are in a way ‘special’. That’s because magic here is part of the service industry. And that’s the case for this girl, Yume Kikuchi, who is also the main protagonist for the series. One thing I find funny about this girl is that she has 3 strands of hair sticking up on her head. Did she use some sort of gel? Looks like some kind of bug antenna. Just kidding. Anyway, as seen in the first episode, she arrives from the country side village to Tokyo in order to become an apprentice mage. What’s a mage? Well, for those who’ve never read or watch magical or fantasy-like novels or movies, a mage is a person who can cast spells and magic. Same case here. Therefore, I guess the term mage is most appropriate for a person who can use magic here.
 
Yume’s having a hard time trying to find the location of the place where she’ll learn to become an apprentice mage. Yup, she’s gonna be a student to one of the most famous mages of all time, Masami Oyumada, that is. The streets of Tokyo are overly crowded as Yume weaves through them all. Then, she spots a young man named Zennosuke who offered her to help her cross the busy street. But while she’s crossing the street, Yume accidentily tripped and a car is approaching her fast. Suddenly, all the cars start to float in the air. What’s happening? Well, actually Yume’s using her magic powers as she gently put the cars back on the ground. Those drivers must have had a rude shock, huh? At this point, Zennosuke realized that Yume’s a mage too.
 
Zennosuke then took Yume to the subway station and it’s there they parted ways. But Yume who felt that she really need to thank him properly uses her magic and filled his pockets with something. Eventually Yume managed to find the place. Looks like it’s some sort of bar. There she meets a guy named Go Kato AKA Mr Smiley (who’s shirtless at first) whom after hearing her out, takes her upstairs to meet Oyamada. Woah! now 2 shirtless men! Nope. No dirty thoughts here. Looks like he’s quite a good looking guy too. Here we also learn that Yume’s mum too was a famous mage but she’s retired and doesn’t do magic anymore. Yup, Yume’s quite eager and prepared to train and learn to become a certified mage under the guidance of Oyamada. And because of that, Yume will be living under Oyamada’s roof since there were no prior arrangements made for her to stay nearby.
 
Of course with her new surroundings, Yume explores to familarize herself with it. Like how the bar below is operated by Mr Smiley with that latin music in the background. Isn’t she a little underage to enter? Oh well, nothing to it really. Also, a few nostalgic moments as Yume still misses her home very much.
 
The next day, as Oyamada says, the first order of business is to get Yume registered as a trainee mage. At the Magic Branch Bureau, they met an officer who’ll be doing her paper work, Kozo Endo who seems like a friendly and nice elderly man. But during their time there, Yume caught a glimpsed of Zennosuke entering the office and proceeds to greet him. Unfortunately Zennosuke’s in a rage. He’s really mad at Yume as he throws a bag full of money right at Yume’s feet. Looks like it was money that Yume filled his pockets with the other day. Anybody would’ve been overjoyed receiving such an amount but not him. Yeah, Zennosuke’s not that greedy kind of person and told her off that he didn’t expect some kind of reward or whatsoever in return for his help and that he’s just helping because he wanted too. Though I guess Yume’s intentions were good but in a way she misused her magic recklessly. What a way to make a bad start and impression.
 
Episode 2 begins with Yume watching some video about ethics in using magic. A lot of those explanations which I’ve already forgotten. Oops. But one thing I remembered is that, a mage can only perform his/her magic actions when there is a formal request made. That means, you can’t simply use your magic powers as and when you feel like it. Some violation thingy there.
 
Also, Yume got some signet ring to signify her as mage. Yup, this ring throughout the series will glow and aids in Yume’s magic power when she uses it. And each mage has got their own ‘trademark’ and Yume’s is a dolphin. Can’t remember exactly how she got that. Plus, before each time she performs her magic, she’ll always start off with the line "With all my precious feelings…". I guess you need to say the right words too like ‘open sesame’ or ‘abracadabra’ in order for magic to work.
 
After Yume got her ring, Oyamada brings her to meet one of the heads of the Magic Bureau, Rikiya Furusaki, who also seems to have an apprentice mage under his wing, Angela Brooks. Looks like this Furusaki guys seems strict and not too kind, complaining of Angela’s unauthorized use of magic. Hmm… He seems not to take a liking for Yume too as he’s not too fond of how Yume uses her magic recklessly. Looks mean too.
 
Later that day, Yume’s at Tokyo’s shopping district when she happened to bump Zennosuke working part time at some fast food place. It’s a small world after all. The 2 had some chat and Yume’s embarrassed about the earlier incident and kept apologizing profusely. So much so she cried. Wah, that bad ah. In order not for Zennosuke to look like it’s his fault (it isn’t in the first place) he takes her to the nearby park.
 
At the park, the 2 of them continue their chat and Yume found out that Zennosuke previously wanted to become a pro football player but lost power to his legs during an accident many years ago. That’s why he felt pity and wanted to help Yume crossed the street the other day. Yume thinks that was in a way a formal requests and proceeds to use her magic to heal Zennosuke’s leg. Looks like her magic is more powerful than the last time. Before you know it, Zennosuke’s playing football with the other kids and he looks quite happy. And he even scored a goal! But as he turned around, Yume’s already gone. Meanwhile, at the Magic Bureau, Furusaki isn’t too happy when the sensors picked up an unauthorized use of magic, which is from Yume. He contacts Oyamada about it but the latter cooly says that it’s part of her training. Meanwhile Yume heads back to her place feeling very happy about what has happened today.
 
So for the rest of the episodes it will be something like this. Yume meets all sorts of people and their problems and she wants to help them out in a way using her magic. Well, at least that’s what I felt. I mean, if she wants to become a successful mage, I suppose she has to go through and face all kinds of problems, right? But somehow I also felt that these problems were not as serious so much so it would make her sweat or panic. Which is a good thing too, right? You shouldn’t put too much pressure on a little girl in training at first.
 
In episode 3, besides having Angela studying beside her for the day, Oyamada is approached by a women named Lila. She wants to hire a mage to help her out with her problem. It seems that the man she fell in love with is in prison serving time for embezzlement charges which she claims he wasn’t really part of. She wants to get word to him to tell him that she’s waiting for him but her efforts were being hampered by all those red tape bureaucracy stuffs. She tried other medias like newspaper but since her story isn’t important, it’s a small column lost somewhere inside the newspaper where nobody bothers to find or couldn’t see at all. Also, only his parents are allowed to see him in prison.
 
Angela who’s moved by Lila’s story, decides to help her out. But of course Yume tries to stop her with that unauthorized used of magic and formal request thingy. Yup, the 2 seem like loggerheads. And donno what happened at one point the 2 said that they’re gonna use their magic so much so that several magic activities and spells were released and they both ended up on top of a building. Huh? And we see Angela’s ‘trademark’ is a cross with wings. Anyway because of that, Furusaki and his bureau members picked up this signal and he again fumes it must be them. Looks like he’s got them on his watch list.
 
In the end, it’s Oyamada who helped Lila in a way. Yeah, looks like he too used some unauthorized magic by using a small bit of magic onto Lila’s lottery ticket. Oh yeah, it looks like Oyamada’s ‘trademark’ is a snowflake. The next day, Yume and Oyamada saw in the front page of the local newspaper that Lila had won the jackpot worth several millions and she donated it all to charity. At least now Lila’s loved one will know about her through the headlines. And Yume’s dreaming of their happy married future. Ah well, girls will be girls.
 
Oyamada tells Yume that since there’re no clients for the day, that they’ll be taking the rest of the day off in episode 4. But a little girl by the name of Luna Morikawa comes in looking for Oyamada. But he wasn’t in. Okay, to cut things short, Luna’s unhappy with one of her classmates, Yasuyuki. Why? Because he’s a mage and he didn’t tell her or his other friends that he was one. He claims that the magic he used usually don’t turn up well that’s why he’s quite reluctant to use or, what more tell others about it. But that wasn’t the bad part.
 
The thing is, Luna’s favourite teacher is going to retire soon and she and her friends were supposed to spend his last day with them stargazing. Unfortunately, the weather forecast says that it will rain that night. And since Yasuyuki won’t use his powers to make those rainy clouds go away, Luna decides to ask the local Magic Bureau for help.
 
So most of the episodes see how Yume tries to understand Yasuyuki’s condition and how she helps him regain his self-confidence and the use of magic. On that fateful night, the weather forecast’s right when it’s about to rain. Yasuyuki mustered up his courage and willpower to make it a clear night. And with a little help from Yume, the whole group is then teleported to the moon where they have a picnic there. I’m not sure if it’s an illusion because, you still need oxygen to breath when you’re up there, right? But it was quite a beautiful scenery on the moon.
 
Meanwhile, Furusaki picks up an unauthorized magic power but this time it’s much stronger than before. Looks like he’s really had it with Yume. But in the closing scenes, we see him talking to a guy named Chief Ginpun who’s reassuring Furusaki that the magic’s been taken care off and whatever answers needed for the press has also been provided for. My first impression of this guy who wears some blinds over his eyes is that he was a she! Yup, must the his thick red lips, long silver hair and the way he dresses made me think so. And when I found out that he was a man, I was thinking that maybe he’s a transvestite. Maybe that’s just his way of dressing. Girly man. Second impression is, I thought with his enigmatic and mysterious ways, he’s a bad guy and is gonna give Yume a lot of trouble in time to come. Later too I found out that he’s actually a good guy and is quite and understanding and patient fellow. See, never judge a book by it’s cover. So is he really blind? So how does he see? Through his heart, maybe. Or perhaps he doesn’t really need to see things or maybe… he’s got crossed eyes! Hahaha. Just kidding. Sorry.
 
And you’ll be assured that he’s so as the beginning of episode 5, Yume meets him at his large mansion for some meeting. He’s telling her how great her mom was when she was one and gives her some words of encouragement. Also it seems that Angela seems to be living in Chief Ginpun’s house too because she’s under his training. I thought she’s under Furusaki. Maybe change of hands, huh?
 
But that’s not the main point of this episode. This episode is mainly on Luna. Before that, we’re introduced to a new character named Milinda who works at the bar as a DJ. Hmm… Looks like she’s a little envious that Yume’s her trainee. But don’t worry, those she’ll get along pretty well with Yume.
 
Anyway, Luna’s facing some problems in her household, particularly with her mom. So young already got that rebelling spirit like not listening to her mom. No doubt that throughout the series she’s a regular at the bar. And I mean not a drinker, duh! She just likes to hang out with people there like Mr Smiley, Milinda and even Yume. Of course Luna’s mom’s worried for her hanging out at such a place and event skipping school. Surely she’s a bit upset and proceeded to take her home instant.
 
So some little tension here and there, Yume tries to help them without using her magic, stuffs like that. Yeah, Luna’s mom’s in a little frenzy since her daughter wandered off and got lost in the streets of Tokyo in the middle of the night. And she wants Yume to use her magic powers to help locate Luna. But Yume said that it would be better if she had find Luna on her own. Of course it all ends well when Luna who’s ‘lepak-king’ at some temple listening to her walkman, is reunited with her mom once again. They also realized the they are important to each other and how they need each other. See, you should also listen to you mother and when your mom scolds you it’s nto because she hates you but rather she loooooves you, isn’t it? Also, I felt that this is as far and prominent as Luna’s part gets. The rest of the episodes is like she’s ‘just there’ but doing nothing really significant. Bummer.
 
Well, it’s Mr Smiley’s turn in episode 6. A near-drowning incident had left one of the 3 orphanage children, Yuta, to be in critical condition. He’s in hospital and in comatose state. We learn that Mr Smiley’s an orphan too, so these children are like family to him. But Yuta’s condition isn’t improving and is taking a turn for the worse. A desperate Mr Smiley stole Oyamada’s ring in hopes that he could use magic to heal Yuta.
 
But he was later told by Yume that the magic powers come from the person himself and that the ring is just a form of identification. In addition, magic powers cannot be acquired and a person must be born with it. It was quite a heart breaking scene to see Mr Smiley breaking down as couldn’t do anything to help. Even he tried pleading to Oyamada for him to use his magic to save Yuta but Oyamada told him that even magic can be used to solve everything.
 
So Mr Smiley couldn’t do much but to stay by Yuta’s side as he tries to talk to him like how he’ll do things together with him once he gets better. And there was a slight reaction from Yuta when wind chimes and bells were mentioned. Using this as his source of motivation, finally Yuta managed to open his eyes. Yeah, looks like some usage of magical powers there as we see lots of those wind chimes and bells floating in the room. Everyone’s relieved and Mr Smiley’s overjoyed. But later it’s said that since it wasn’t Yume nor Oyamada who used their magical powers, which could only mean that… Mr Smiley’s a mage too? And later back at their place he apologized to Oyamada for taking his ring without his permission but Oyamada says he can keep it because he’s allowing him so.
 
In episode 7, Oyamada along with Yume and Angela received a formal request from a few shopkeepers. Their shop windows always seemed to be vandalized but recently a young mage offered to fix it for free. Unfortunately, he just put up an illusion. So as Yume and Angela worked to remove the illusion, Oyamada fixes the windows for real. Also, Yume always noticed how sad Oyamada looked whenever he uses his magic.
 
Later back at the Magic Branch bureau, Yume and Angela saw Furusaki scolding a young man named Inoue Sakuya, who’s also a trainee mage. Looks like he’s the guy who did that fake window illusion thing and he seems very sorry for what he has done. So he went to apologize to the 2 girls and those shopkeepers. The rest of this episodes sees how Inoue too has his own fair share of problems regarding magic, his fears, past and all that. I guess he’s just like any other human being too. Not perfect, that is.
 
Besides that, this episode isn’t that much, except I felt that it was just the calm before the storm. Uh-huh, furthermore since Oyamada is away to Hong Kong as Chief Ginpun said something about him upset with his own magic lately, the rest of the gang have that usual ‘makan’ gathering and tell some tales about passing the mage exams and all that. Also, looks like Mr Smiley is being acknowledged as a mage after that incident at the hospital but not a certified one yet. And by the end of this episode, we see how anxious and gloomy Angela is. Is it because of the exams. Or is it something else…
 
Yup, something else is really bothering Angela as you’ll find out in episode 8. To cut things short. She’s in love! With who? With Inoue, of course. Well, I could tell by her body language that she’s got that uneasy feeling everytime she’s near him. But she denies and ignores it at first. See that’s what happen when you keep your feelings in your heart like that. It’ll become a ticking time bomb. And when it explodes, there’s no turning back and you the damage done is much more destructive than the A-bomb dropped on Hiroshima in 1945.
 
And looks like she’s dead serious or maybe caught up in love fever which makes her unable to think straight, when she uses her magic powers to bend one of the Tokyo towers just to ask Inoue to go out with her! Man, that’s dangerous. I think I would think twice if I’m going out with her. And that tower looked so twisted that it’s worse than those art sculptures you see in modern contemporary art galleries. Okay, maybe it’s not that twisted.
 
But in the end, Inoue managed to calm her down. Unfortunately, her actions has caused a little commotion and of course attracted the attention of the media. As usual Chief Ginpun has all the right reassuring answers and in the end that tower has been reversed back to its normal position and soon as a result, Angela is suspended indefinately.
 
Episode 9 is the start of Yume’s turning point. She and Oyamada head over to an old woman and her adult son’s house to fulfill their request of restoring the settings back to how it was 50 years ago. Yume manages to perform her request flawlessly. But unfortunately, Yume overheard that old lady saying how she regretted making the request. This caused Yume to start thinking whether what she did was wrong or right. Yup, her confidence is already shaken. And there’s gonna be a lot of indecisiveness and spacing out from her. Can’t blame her, she’s still new and under training.
 
The atmosphere from now on will take quite a gloomy mood and pace. But before that all that, in that episode too, while Yume’s performing her magic she caught a glimpse of a little girl and her little white cat which only she could see. Don’t really know what it all means except that the little girl in a way helped to find an old man lying lifelessly at some abandoned house. Yume managed to get to him in time and with Mr Smiley’s help, that old man was taken to hospital for treatment. So that little girl’s a ghost or an apparition? Looks like. She even caused Yume’s 3 strands of hair to drop. Hehe. And by the end of this episode, it seems that Furusaki now views Yume a little more favourable. Because she gave him some sunflower seeds which reminded him of his childhood days…?! Yeah, that old guy that Yume and Mr Smiley saved is somewhat related to Furusaki. His missing brother or something. I guess in a way he’s quite thankful for what they’ve done.
 
Still unsure about that ‘I-regret-my-request’ line, in episode 10 Yume wonders if her magic are sufficient and useful. A lot of unsure thinking. Also at the same time we see that Oyamada has some sort of his own problems too. He’s looking more melancholy than before but still manages to retain his posture. Though he seems kinda spaced out in a way. As Mr Smiley and Milinda said that Oyamada wasn’t so open like this until Yume came into his life. So I guess there must be something really bad that happened to him, huh?
 
To make things worse, the house that Yume did the request on caught fire and that old lady is critical injured and is even hospitalized. Oh dear. Yume now feels that her actions may be responsible for it. She even becomes very discouraged to use her magic as it may not bring happiness to people. Even Oyamada tries to talk to her but I guess Yume needs some time on her own to settle and figure things out.
 
And in episode 11 we find out Oyamada’s tragic past and dark secret. It seems before all this, a young Oyamada had a girlfriend named Takako. And as they were driving along the beach coast, an incoming truck (maybe the driver’s drunk as it’s swerving left and right) threatens to collide into them. Oyamada’s instant reaction was of course to suddenly steer away from it. Unfortunately, the car went through the divider and crashed on the sandy beach below. Though Oyamada’s injured but Takako’s wound was even serious and life threatening. And without further assistance, she could die! So he decided to use his magic powers to save her life. However, it was futile as Takako died in his arms as he could only watched in horror. I suppose that’s why Oyamada didn’t want to help Mr Smiley and Yuta’s case as he realized that magic isn’t everything, especially when it comes to life and death. He still can’t forgive himself over Takako’s death.
 
With that, Yume ponders if she should go on training as a mage apprentice. She’s got no choice though. Yume again meets Chief Ginpun at his house. He then orders her to take a final exam to be a certified mage. But the thing is, the test will be for Yume to use her magic powers on Oyamada. Oh the horror! Things couldn’t get any worse than this. Well, she can’t back down, can’t she. I mean, it’s a direct order from the chief himself. So more spacing out here and there.
 
Looks like Angela’s still there. Giving some self-confidence to Yume to boost her already low-morale. But there’s so much that words could only help. By the episode’s end, Yume’s confidence shatters even further when that little white cat dies in her arms and she couldn’t do anything about it. Oh my. This is really going to be tough for her. How is she gonna overcome it with things like this. Yeah, it’s really gloomy and to add more gloominess to it, it’s even raining with thunderstorm. Typical ominous gloomy scene.
 
But before Yume takes her final exam in episode 12, she’s gonna go through a lot of morale-boosting, self-confidence and words of encouragement conversations from various characters. For instance, the first one being Zennosuke. Hah, I was wondering where that guy went after the end of episode 2. Looks like he’s coaching a team of footballer kids. And I thought his was role was just there and the producers killed him off since. Looks like he’s still grateful for what Yume has done to him that day.
 
Then it’s Angela’s turn after which Yume then ran down to the hospital after hearing news that the old lady’s awoken and in a much better state. Yume finds out the truth about that she actually misconstrued when she said that ‘I regret my request’ line and the old lady meant a different thing and wasn’t referring to Yume’s magic power. What a relief it must’ve been for Yume. That old lady too told Yume that her magic’s actually been quite useful and helpful after all and thanks her for everything. Double relief! Then later some more of those conversation with Mr Smiley on the rooftop of the hospital and finally down at the hospital’s park on a bench with Milinda.
 
And at last, it’s time for Yume to perform her magic on Oyamada. With the 2 of them alone back at their office, Yume begins and with all her precious feelings she takes Oyamada to an alternate reality whereby he had died instead of Takako. Looks like she’s living life to the fullest with her own family now, though she still remembers and prays for him. Then a change of scene where Oyamada and Takako sitting together on a sunset beach. Some talking here and there something like how Takako would like him to live life to the fullest and he shouldn’t be bogged down by the past and look like a person dying on his deathbed. With that, Oyamada’s been ‘released’ from his past and tells Yume she did a job well done and passed with flying colours.
 
In the ending credits, we see Yume being certified as a mage now by a pleased Chief Ginpun. Because she decides to go back to her home after all this, we see her saying goodbye and thanking everyone for their support from Furusaki to Angela to Endo and the rest of the other staffs at the Magic Branch Bureau, to Luna (who’s reluctant to see her go) and Milinda. Hey, looks like Mr Smiley’s now a mage trainee as he shows Yume his ring. Lastly as Oyamada sees off Yume at the train station she promised how she would come back and return. Oyamada then told her to return then because he’ll be waiting for her and so are the rest of the gang. I guess that lifted her spirits as we can see now Yume crossing the street without hesitation or fear.
 
Overall, I could say that this is a heartwarming anime. Nice and slow storyline and concept. And just like Aria The Animation, another thing I like about this series are the wonderful background musics and soundtracks. Yes, a lot of those soothing sounds from classical guitar pluckings to piano playing to strings, mostly easy to listen too. Though I find most of the tracks sound the same with a little variation here and there, nevertheless, they’re still quite soothing and nice to listen too. So keep your ears peeled and open when you watch this series.
 
As for the character developments, as far as I’m concern, I felt that Yume’s character is the one that’s being developed, though Oyamada’s one was at the end. The rest of the other characters’ development weren’t that significant, though and even if there was, probably it was too small for me to notice nor did it have any major impact in the series. I’m not saying they’re ‘stagnant’ but since the series focuses mainly on Yume, I guess probably they took a back seat.
 
I can’t really say much for the voice acting. That’s because I’ve watched the series dubbed in English rather than the original Japanese audio, as I’ve always preferred the latter. So I notice some accents here and there. Especially Angela’s. Uh-huh, she sounded like a Texan or maybe a person who used the Queen’s English. Weird. But I got used to it. It wasn’t that bad either.
 
There’re several lessons that one can learn from here too such as hope and perserverance. The series may touch a little on the matter about life and death but didn’t really delve into it. Main thing is, it’s important to live and do things while we’re alive. Just on the surface. So even if magic doesn’t really exists in this current world, but I’m sure that there’re ‘magic’ happening every day. Just that, it’s how you view and accept them, whether big or small. That’s all.