Hey guys! My review of Mighty Magiswords here in this blog post is actually a repost of a full review I did on Deviantart without the emoticons and some slight changes since the date it was uploaded on (May 18, 2018 to be exact). So if you wanna read it the way it should be, just check out the page []. This was just my personal opinion of season 1 and bits of season 2, and if you disagree with the points I've made, that's A-OK. I'll try not to hold back on this! Hope you guys enjoy it!
What's up everyone! Vsauce here, and I'm back from surgery, finishing up the Samurai Jack saga of myToon Wars crossover, and going back to check on College and job searching to talk about something I feel deserves a bit more attention and some useful critique. In my last update (specifically my [Update]), I mentioned I would try something different and a bit risky and be talking about Mighty Magiswords and review it. But it seems more obscure than much of Cartoon Network’s shows out now. I mean, I’m not even sure if many even know about it. I didn't either until it got close to the end of last year and I ended up stumbling on a picture in google images I don't wanna talk about. All I can say is that I now know why Vambre doesn't like squirrels and I hope people realized Bimm was a kid in the Adventure Academy. Anyway, 2017 was one of the most miserable years for Cartoon Network since the day CN Real arose from Hell and screwed everything up. And this series, and quite a few other shows I’ve never even heard of nor seen on TV because they’re either streamed or rarely aired because of the shows that get more views. Even on Fanfiction.net, you barely see anyone up with their own stories of Magiswords except me and about two other people. In fact, the show's Amino is even worse! I didn't say much in the version of this on Deviantart, but as of now, I was one of the most active users out of the hundred people who're up there, when only around 5 or less people show up almost everyday as though the rest had simply abandoned it. Like, it has less people up there than Clarence and Unikitty. Aside from that, you also have mostly "meh" kinda scores from what little reviews of the series there are (mostly reviews from 2016 when the show came out). But does the show really deserve a score like 6 or below? Let's find out, starting with
- 1 Premise, and the Magiswords Themselves
- 2 Characters - Name One
- 3 Style - A Comic Book Come to Life
- 4 Pacing and Dialogue - Sonic Adventure 2 Cutscenes
- 5 Morals - Be Yourself, or Die
- 6 Hidden Potential - Hey, there’s a cool title. For any fanfic writers, feel free to use it ;)
- 7 Final Verdict - People always get nervous by this point
Premise, and the Magiswords Themselves
A brother and sister duo go on several hundreds of quests while collecting magical swords or whatever. That’s pretty much it.
Right from the get go, it’s a pretty basic plot; to me at least. I don’t really feel invested in anything unless the status quo changes. Throughout the series, there really isn’t any story except for the season finale. Just about every episode follows some sort of shenanigan or small adventure the main duo get themselves into, whether it’d be Prohyas yelling at a goat for 11 minutes (this is a season 2 episode, mind you), some crazy chick obsessing over the Warriors for Hire (even though, they're really not all that in my opinion), or helping a diva get her hair back together. Not really a lot of plot to go around. Much of the time, it can range from interesting to “EH?” And when things do get interesting, like in the Saga of Robopiggeh, which has a funny name that sounds like it came straight from Invader Zim, it's never really eventful. The same can be said for the Magiswords themselves, because no matter how many are introduced, they don't seem all that unique aside from the powers they have. The warriors or whomever only use them once much of the time, and use them for convenience's sake in another, and that's it. Personally, I don't really like the Magiswords that much because they really aren't swords or weapons. But they can still be interesting in their own unique way. That is if it actually is worth anything for more than just one episode or situation. Heck, even the Knowledge Magisword, which was hyped up for around 2 episodes in the finale of season 1 wasn’t that cool. It’s really just a mind reader. It did help tell an interesting plot, but not the one it deserves. I’m not saying that the show has to be Transformers: Prime or Steven Universe levels of storytelling, but it wouldn’t hurt to have at least a couple every now and again just to change things up a little and get people excited for more.
Characters - Name One
“It’s just you and I out in the cold…” - Vambre Warrior, with my sediments exactly
k, so the Magiswords themselves aren’t all that. That’s fine. At the very least, the characters are interesting right?! ABSOLUTELY! ..Kind of...Almost...See, I already said that I thought V and P weren’t special either, but there are some genuine moments where they do something interesting and distinct. Vambre, for example, to me is great to listen to when she sings or is dating with Noville, because for one thing, the actress who voices her is actually really talented (I mean, for god's sake. Grey DeLisle voiced my childhood. Kitty Katswell and Sam Manson are two examples of this), and the other is that when she’s doing these things, it feels different from the norm of every other episode. She and her brother do a lot of stuff, but when following the premise, it’s pretty much the same gimmick everyday, especially the Academy Shorts where each clip ends with them losing a sword to Bunky the Closet. As for Prohyas, there’s not a lot to talk about him either. I don’t wanna say he’s stupid or a sidekick, cause he really isn’t. And when he is doing something stupid, Vambre’s usually there with him doin' the same thing a second later. Much of the time, their goofs are just used for quick laughs (even though everything is pretty fast in season 1), so it makes sense that they do something dumb every now and again to bring light into a situation. Half the time, it is funny. But other than that, for Prohyas’ sake, I can't exactly describe much about him except for when he talks to Witchy Simone. They’re dialogue together is one of the best things I've ever heard from the series (Coincidentally, their actors are married to each other), and hearing him yell “Hey Squirt,” followed by “THAT’S NOT MY NAME!!!” just never seems to get old. They're like a couple coming into fruition. But when you take that away, or you don’t have Simone around, there’s not really anything to look forward to with he and Vambre. Yeah, their personalities are in the right place, and they do have flaws that can define them at times (especially in season 2), but you’re not really feeling anything from them. Like there almost doesn't seem to be any change or something. They’re just static the whole time.
But enough with the main duo. What’s to say about the other characters not many people mention online? There’s quite a number of them, more so than I thought before I even started watching a few episodes of the series, but only a few of them appear more often than others. Take Neddy, Grup, or evenNoville for example. They exist. That’s really all I’ve gotta say about that. Noville has more character than the other two, even an episode to himself, but not really much else. Grup has his own personality too, but he’s just kinda there. He lives with the Warriors for Hire, but that’s pretty much it. That is to say he a damn good homemaker and he's pretty cute. Then you have Neddy, who’s also a bit of a dunce at times. A whole bunch of times...Ok, every time! But then you have other characters like Witchy Simone, Morbidia, or Gateaux. Only two of them show up more often than the other, but you do get plenty of time to actually get to know these people. You’ve got Morbidia, who’s the most screamy out of all the characters in the show rivaling that of Starscream, who I swear has so many different faces and frames of animation, even the show’s voice acting and sound effects couldn’t keep up with her. She and Gateaux are more of an evil opposite of the Warriors for Hire, and they’re often shown poking fun at them or competing against them; one episode they even assist them. You get to see Morbidia taunt Prohyas, telling him he’s really just a sidekick for Vambre, and in another episode, you see Gateaux seek help when he’s suddenly replaced by Simone for a day. He also likes writing fanfiction. And he’s proud of it. ...Yep. Hits close to home for me! Hits me in a good way, and then makes me wonder what it is he’s actually writing, and the horrors within it.
But before we scar our eyes and ears, let’s check out Squirt, who’s easily the best character in the whole show along with Cattus. And I say and stand by that for a few reasons:
- She has some episodes where you learn more about her, like a story. One day she’ll be jealous of her sister because she’s actually financially successful, and in another episode, you learn that Simone would be willing to team up with the Warriors for Hire or anything else whenever she gets the chance, likely to get out of her bum job.
- When she appears, it feels like she’s having the most fun out of everyone no matter the situation making you want to have her around more often. It’s also a pretty genuine surprise when she does pop up in some episodes, even if it is just a cameo.
- Her personality is almost that of a young kid. She’s not afraid to be silly, and unlike everyone else, it doesn’t really get annoying when she’s yelling or making faces. It feels natural to her to say the least.
Simone’s one of the few, if not the only, characters in the show who possess some form of development throughout, and is often a joy to watch in action, right next to Morbidia or the rest of the characters below. She helps make the show feel more alive than artificial, if that makes sense. While every other character feels as though they’re restricted in some way or another and are reduced in static personalities (with some exceptions), everything Simone does or says always seems like something she’d legit do or change, like any cartoon character should. To me, Witchy Simone was one of my favorite characters in Magiswords and Cartoon Network next to Nicole Watterson, Bobert, Gumball, or Soundwave and Starscream. So, what about the other characters? There are still quite a number of them left, and the only interesting ones I can think of are the ones from the academy shorts. These include:
- Cattus the One Blade : Who really likes helping people and has a playful personality...That of which I might actually be scared of looking at these particular images…He's also the same dude who beat the snot out of the Warriors for Hire with just one Magisword and the environment in a duel in a recent episode. This kitty don't mess around.
- Familiar : Who’s more down to Earth than the others and is just trying to live a normal life, but everything keeps going downhill around him. He expresses this in his debut appearance, stating he's not really good at anything else. Huh...
- Principle/Professor Cyrus and Frank Paul: The dopest duo around! Nothing’s gonna ever keep em’ down! These two are like Master Roshi and the Turtle if they went to school to teach, and the Turtle speaks in squaks.
- Bimm : Hilariously enough, and I'm not kidding when I say this, but Bimm's actually the first Magiswords character I've ever seen, and I honestly thought she came from a different cartoon. From day one, it feels like she’s trying to live up to someone’s expectations. That being their family of adventurers. Obviously, Bimm’s not like that. She’s actually quite shy. And also gives one of the best expressions I've seen in the show.
The rest from the shorts are characters I’ve already mentioned above. But for these guys, like Simone, they seem like they have some sort of development or defining personalities. You see on day one what they’re like and why they’ve come to the show to begin with, but the thing is, you don’t really see enough of them. Most of them, I mean. Bimm, right now, only appeared in the shorts, a cameo, and one episode for God’s sake! And Familiar’s mostly used for background or a side character who gets thrown away by Vambre. Cattus actually gets an episode to himself, but y’know what’s interesting is that like the others, his is pretty good in a sense that you get to know him more and he actually tells a pretty good lesson in the end without being annoying in the slightest. You also get a chance to see the Warriors for Hire go insane and though they said they’ve learned something, I can’t quite say they have unless they really show it. Basically, there’s a lot of characters, more than what I listed, but you’re mostly just focused on the main duo every episode. This would be sort of ok, if it were like Steven Universe and gave you time to learn about the other characters despite Steven always being in every frame and clip on Youtube (though this makes sense why. The show’s called Steven Universe, not Crystal Gems, so you know it’s in his point of view, not varied). Or be like Gumball, and give quite a number of episodes to another group of characters other than the title character without him always being there. Unfortunately, outside of some rare occurrences, you just stick with the main duo’s adventures and that’s it.
This bugs me because there are some who could potentially do more than what they’re given. But for a majority of the time, we’re left with episodes where the same two people get themselves into something for the sake of collecting or showing off a sword they’ll probably neglect for the rest of the season unless it’s sentient. Oh, and speaking of sentient swords, (yes, that’s a thing) the two that appear most often and interact with other characters are the Zombie Pumpkin and Dolphin Magiswords. Again, they exist. So, yeah. That’s something...Don’t really have much to say about them, really. So all in all, what we’re left with are two inhumans (that show didn’t last long, huh), and two talking toys, plus a Spike the Dragon who somehow managed to overshadow a large portion of the show’s other characters to the point where if you look up someone like...say,Phibby Croax , all you’ll get are screens from here on the wiki or fan art from one or two people (usually me...).
Style - A Comic Book Come to Life
Like most cartoons nowadays, there's a lot of bright vibrant colors throughout the series that really make the show stand out. Just about everyone can be in your face in one scene to the next. But the one thing that I actually hadn't noticed until about two people had pointed them out is the fact that the show actually borrows a much different setting. Medieval period mixed with a bit of modern culture. Something you don't really see a lot of in comparison to the drab and empty environments most cartoons adopt these days. The only other ones that were remotely different we're My Little Pony and Adventure Time, but they were mostly helped by the characters in them, or if there were enough episodes to get people acquainted to them. The fact that you can tell what is Magiswords and what isn't really let's it all pop. Y'know? Gives it some life.
So yeah, the environments are actually fantastic. Very diverse. You also see that the designs of the characters, actually aren’t that bad either You can look at everyone and tell it’s a Magiswords cartoon by default. Like the environments, it feels very medieval, mixed with some modern styles and culture, so no one has to worry about confusing any of them for another cartoon. The only issue with it is that there are still plenty of comparisons to other art styles when looking at the way they’re drawn (i.e. the bubbly arms, anime sort of eyes, flash movements, and exaggerated faces that look like they came straight from Steven Universe or Gumball, which has sort of become a running theme by this point in Cartoon Network’s standards), but the actual character designs do help to make everyone look more distinct. It just isn’t too memorable is the problem. You can tell it’s Magiswords thanks to the comic book sort of aesthetic, which is great, but when you leave, you’re mostly going to forget everyone but maybe Vambre or Simone usually by looks alone. For example, all I could remember the first time I ever saw the show were Prohyas (because he’s spade out all over Cartoon Network’s app promotions), Simone, Vambre (cause she’s all I see fan art for on Deviantart, even though I swear it's only cause they're hot), Cattus, Phibby (he really isn’t hard to miss), and Bimm; both her designs. Other than them, if you tell me about Kablammica (who I confused for someone in a different cartoon), Grup (who the more I say his name, the more I accidentally call him Groot),Old Man Oldman, or that horny ghost from an earlier episode of the show, I wouldn’t really recognize any of them from the tip of my tongue even though I know they’re on the show. That’s just with me, of course. There’s still plenty of people who do know who these characters are, but it’s certainly not a lot compared to those who know just about everyone from OK KO Let’s be Heroes. After seeing what the characters are doing so far, I will say it IS easy to remember them mostly by design alone. To me for the most part. Unlike Transformers: Robots in Disguise where just about every Decepticon is easy to forget every season. ...I'll get on that series eventually.
Pacing and Dialogue - Sonic Adventure 2 Cutscenes
Ok, so like my Deviantart version of this review, I was about to say that the pacing was awful and sounded like no one had time to breath in every sentence. But then I saw the ending episodes of Season 1 to what we have so far of 2, and I gotta admit, it's an improvement! I dunno if anyone told someone that,"Hey, the kids might not understand what they're saying. Ya might wanna slow down a little" or not. But the show seriously fixed it. It's not perfect. I mean, don't get me wrong. There's still plenty of moments where the characters would randomly yell or say "Get it" to get people's attention. But for what it's worth, coming back from seeing the early episodes of season 1, it's getting better!
Now that that's out of the way, there's only one last topic to cover before we get to the main question I had for the series...
Morals - Be Yourself, or Die
So like I said in the other version of this, there’s also a number of morals that to me don’t really seem to fit, or even land in a good way. Much of these feel like they’ve been shoved in at the last second and it tends to become an annoyance as time goes on. The worst example, to me, comes from the season finale, Quest for Knowledge, which saw the Warriors for Hire reunite with their old classmates to find the not-so Legendary Knowledge Magisword. They all have their own motivations and goals for what they want to do with it, which are relatively harmless and could really do them all some good favors when you compare them to that of the Warriors for Hire, since they don’t really use all their swords that often in the show and don’t seem to change anything. The main duo suggest they work together to get the sword and figure out what to do with it later, but everyone already said they wanted that magisword. That's ok though, since if they need help, they could go back and ask them. But instead, we’re treated to much of the cast looking like total morons, constantly getting sabotaged way too easily, with the exception of Cattus, Phibby (who really just wanted some action), Familiar, and Bimm, who either fall asleep meditating (ok, Cattus, that was pretty silly that time), or they end up stopping whatever’s in their way without so much as a headache. By that I mean, Glori assembled a creature, the creature attempts to attack everyone, Familiar throws something at it, Phibby and Bimm knock it down and everyone shuts the door. It was perfect and it lasted under 20 seconds. After this moment, the Warriors keep speaking the message of “TEAMWORK” throughout the rest of the episode, and the rest are treated like they’re dumb to the point where much of them look even more crazy for going in head first against somebody who already got the thing they were looking for. They also learn that the sword itself isn’t even all that special like I mentioned before. All it does is read minds and give Glori here and excuse to make everyone look even more weak. And since Glori already showed what it does, no one should be given a reason to attack despite what she said to them. In the end, the moral is stated again, the other characters kneel to V and P, and that’s it.
I'm sorry, but until the Warriors can use something like the Knowledge Magisword for more than one or two episodes and treat it with better importance without making everyone else look stupid, I'm just not with them on this. However, there is one episode that does exist that actually works. Take Season 2’s Status of Cattus for example, where you see the Warriors for Hire, like I’ve mentioned before, go crazy showing Cattus all sorts of Magiswords in an effort to get him hooked into collecting more than the one he already has. But you see throughout the episode that he’s just fine with the one. He doesn’t need a whole arsenal of them in his pouch. He just uses Whirlwind for his daily needs and does it quite efficiently; even making some children happy by giving them all puppies Prohyas spawned out his sword. When the moral is explained later, it isn’t even thrusted into you either. All he says in the end is that his sword is all he NEEEEEEEDS, whereas the Warriors for Hire say it’s all they WAAAAAAAANT. This line alone just perfectly sums up everything I mentioned about the duo. But it also sheds some light on Cattus and the moral of the story without being too on-the-nose about it. The rest of season 2 is also like this with a few improvements, and yeah, it still needs work. Nothing's changed about that. But like I said before, it's still getting better. But is it enough to attract an audience larger than what it has..?
Hidden Potential - Hey, there’s a cool title. For any fanfic writers, feel free to use it ;)
Y’know, after going through much of this review complaining about many of the more noticeable flaws the show has, mostly in it’s first season, I don’t think that’s ultimately the problem. There are those who still like the show for what it is, both on this wiki and elsewhere. I even found more value in it than I did before writing this review. Lots of young kids really enjoy stuff like these, and I’m a young adult . But I feel like there’s actually some potential in it that could’ve made it so much more than just a kid’s show. I don’t know whether it’s cause Cartoon Network’s standards are preventing it from doing anything else, I don’t know if this was what it was always meant to be or the writers are drained to the core from working on it for too long, and if they are, I have faith that they'll get through it ok. But I always felt like there's more to it than meets the eye based on glimpses of things that could've worked. I like Witchy Simone so much because she’s actually got herself somewhat of a story, a decent personality, and is almost always interesting to watch and care for. I already explained that Quest for Knowledge wasn’t that good of an episode, but it got me interested in seeing more of the more obscure sort of characters and that one awesome fight scene. It even inspired me and a few others out there to write our own series continuations (like Fusion Wars, Flatmate, and They Called it Kitty Love)! Cattus got a great episode about him and showed that the Warriors for Hire actually aren’t flawless and told a good lesson in all of it. Speaking of, much of season 2, as of now, is actually not that bad. It's pretty fun and made a ton of improvements where they're due! Or hey, the art style isn’t totally special, and I actually don’t like the stilted flash animation a lot (not just with Magiswords but with all sorts of other cartoons...I’m looking at you Fairly Oddparents), but when they switch between art styles and expressions, it’s actually quite fun to watch. It’s just the little details like these that tell me that maybe, just maybe with the right kind of power, they can make the show far better than what it is now, and unlock it's hidden potential. Like, I'm talkin' Dragon Ball Z levels of unlocking potential, if that makes sense. They can make it truly spectacular to the point where it gets more attention and be a part of the network’s more high-tier sort of shows and make the creator proud to have made it. It could make it seem "MORE LEGITIMATE!!!" Well said, Familiar and Bimm. Well said...
Final Verdict - People always get nervous by this point
And now, for my final verdict. Like I said on Deviantart, I usually don’t like to rate things out of ten or five because things like cartoons are bound to change over time. And Magiswords already has a second season that's only halfway done. However, I do wanna acknowledge some ratings that are pretty much spot on with what I’m thinking. Most of these come from IMDB, either telling you, like I said before, that the show’s just “eh;” bout a 6/10. But then you go even further and you see reviews that are mostly negative like 2’s even though what they say about them don’t really correlate well with the score (like, there’s no way it’s worse than Teen Titans Go, and with that show, I’m just indifferent about it. They need to stop comparing things to that), sounding like they’ve only seen a clip or two not really knowing what the heck they’re talkin' about, or straight up lying to you. Not really sure if I should say that. I mean, like this review, these are all opinion-based, sure, but some of them don’t really feel like it. They sound like they're paid to say it or something like that.
Anyway, I give it a 6/10. It’s not bad, but it’s notfantastic either (mainly just with Season 1). There’s potential, but it feels restricted or lost. Some good characters and episodes, but they rarely pop up. Vambre and Prohyas are ok, but that’s all you get outta them. Prepare to see them for around 50 episodes for one season and try and find a way to slow down the audio in earlier episodes so you can catch up with em. Season 2, however, is so much better and interesting, but I'm not really sure if it'll be enough to get people into the series by this point.
Now, I know someone reading this is likely upset that I would give the show (which by the time of this review is unfinished) a 6. It's just my personal opinion. You don't have to agree with me on it. But if there's one thing I can definitely say about it is that it's not NEARLY as bad as what I myself have made back in the day with my old crossover before Magiswords was created. I'm touching on that in my journal posts on Deviantart. So yeah. I know I was harsh in this review, but I tried to add some humor in all this and get my points across without being mostly negative or mostly positive about it. Too many reviewers just say "It sucks" and just go off to parts unknown. But I at least wanted to give more insight as to why me and a few others out there feel unsure about it. But anyway, that's all for now. Stay tuned for an occasional update from me both here and my main hub if you wanna hear about the stories I'm making or other news I might've heard along the way because now is the time I start finishing up my fanfictions and get into the main event everyone's waiting for...