Cover of the first DVD volume
(Mahō Shōjotai Arusu)
|Genre||Adventure, Dark fantasy, Magical girl|
|Anime television series|
|Directed by||Yoshiharu Ashino|
|Original run||April 9, 2004 – March 4, 2005|
|Original video animation|
|Tweeny Witches: The Adventure|
|Directed by||Yoshiharu Ashino|
|Released||22 November 2007|
Tweeny Witches, known in Japan as Magical Girl Squad Arusu (魔法少女隊アルス Mahō Shōjotai Arusu?), is an anime television and original video animation series produced by Studio 4°C. It was translated and dubbed into English by the anime television network Animax, who broadcast it in its respective networks in Southeast Asia, the Indian subcontinent, and other regions, and was licensed for distribution in the United States by Media Blasters until 2012.
The protagonist of the story is Arusu, who mysteriously enters the world of the witches. Herself an enthusiast of witchcraft she is delighted, however she is not satisfied with the way of the witches, insisting that magic only be used to make people happy. She is marked as a troublemaker when she releases all the sprites the witches have captured for use as the source of magic spells. Later in the series, the witches interact with the world of the wizards as both try to save their worlds from destruction.
In 2003 it was announced at the Tokyo International Anime Fair that the anime Magical Girl Squad Arusu was going to be made. The anime first aired between April 9, 2004, and March 4, 2005; in all, 40 episodes were made plus an OVA that contains 12 episodes which was aired in 2007. The anime was licensed by AnimeWorks (Later called Media Blasters) under the English name: Tweeny Witches with three DVDs being released in 2008. The OVA titled Tweeny Witches the Adventures was also released on DVD by Media Blasters in 2009. In 2009 a complete collection called Tweeny Witches True Book of Spells was released.
The anime has received mixed feedback from reviewers: Aint it cool news said that the anime can be thought of as a "There will be blood" type as well as being "Spicy" structurally. The review goes on to say that the anime fan should "at least give it a try" and "warrants appreciation". Rachael Carothers and Ronald J Duncan from Anime News Network both gave a good review. Ronald said that while the idea of a character traveling to another world and gaining the ability to do magic isn't original, the series is different. He stated the episodes were well paced, had a fun main character, and the artwork was beautiful. Rachael praised the art as "extremely beautiful animation" and background music that "fits in so well". Theron Martin from Anime News Network gave the first DVD a B rating for both the sub and dub and went on to say that it was a "fresh twist on a well-established genre" but it raised animation shortcuts to annoying new levels. Chris Beveridge from Mania.com gave the DVD a mixed review with a C rating. Chris went on to say that the story was "slow moving and stilted"; however, he went on to say that his eight-year-old daughter was "plenty fascinated by it", something the creator was aiming at. Carl Kimlinger from Anime News Network gave the 2nd DVD a B - for both the sub and dub and went on to say that the animation was great and the lead character was "lively" but that the direction was "cold and over complex". The third DVD received a C+ rating from him for both dub and sub, again the artwork was praised but the story was lacking a great deal. For the OVA Carl gave it a B- rating again for both sub and dub. The OVA was praised for its fast pace, action, and adventure, but is "too somber and slow".
Chris Beveridge from Maina.com gave the 2nd DVD a better review stating that the "imagery presented, especially towards the end, was very grandiose and epic" but again cited the pacing of the story as a flaw. For the 3rd and final DVD Chris stated that the ending felt "pretty complete" and was "fairly predictable". He later went on to say that the best moments tended to come with the secondary characters but overall did not capture or hold his attention. Chris rated the OVA as being lighter and more accessible nut at times going over the top, in all the review was good. Chris has placed the anime at #4 of the 10 most underrated anime. Mark Thomas from Mania.com said it is something that parents could get into with their children, and a "little bit of Harry Potter, mixed with some Don Bluth, add a dash of Ralph Bakshi." makes it an odd, but fun, combination.
- "Tweeny Witches". Newtype USA. 7 (2) p. 23. February 2008. ISSN 1541-4817.
- "Anime Production Update". Anime News network.com. Retrieved 2012-07-04.
- "Tweeny Witches Vol. 1-Arusu in Wonderland (2004)". www.amazon.com. Retrieved 2012-07-04.
- "Tweeny Witches 2: Through the Looking Glass (Two-Disc Set) (2004)". www.amazon.com. Retrieved 2012-07-04.
- "Tweeny Witches Vol 3: What Arusu Found There (2004)". www.amazon.com. Retrieved 2012-07-04.
- "Tweeny Witches Adventures DVD". www.amazon.com. Retrieved 2012-07-04.
- "Tweeny Witches True Book of Spells". www.amazon.com. Retrieved 2012-07-04.
- "Anime Spotlight: Tweeny Witches Vol. 1-Arusu in Wonderland Released by Anime Works". www.aintitcool.com. Retrieved 2012-07-04.
- Carothers, Rachael; Duncan, Ronald J. (May 9, 2004). "The Summer 2004 Anime Preview Guide". Anime News Network.
- Martin, Theron (April 6, 2008). "Tweeny Witches DVD 1". Anime News Network.
- Beveridge, Chris (April 18, 2008). "Tweeny Witches Vol. #1 (also w/box)". Mania.
- Kimlinger, Carl (June 16, 2008). "Tweeny Witches DVD 2 - Through the Looking Glass". Anime News Network.
- Kimlinger, Carl (September 8, 2008). "Tweeny Witches: What Arusu Found There DVD 3". Anime News Network.
- Kimlinger, Carl (March 8, 2009). "Tweeny Witches OVA DVD - The Adventures". Anime News Network.
- Beveridge, Chris (May 14, 2008). "Tweeny Witches Vol. #2". Mania.
- Beveridge, Chris (August 8, 2008). "Tweeny Witches Vol. #3". Mania.
- Beveridge, Chris (March 26, 2009). "Tweeny Witches: The Adventures". Mania.
- Beveridge, Chris (August 11, 2009). "10 Most Underrated Anime Series". Mania.
- Thomas, Mark (June 5, 2009). "Tweeny Witches: Book of Spells Complete". Mania.