Ojamajo Doremi – Episode 25

Let’s power on through some more Ojamajo Doremi! Last episode saw the show finally reaching the end of its Majo Ruka arc, with Doremi and her friends’ level six powers proving just strong enough to conquer Rika’s nemesis. Unfortunately, Ruka’s exit has opened the door for an even more powerful foe: Doremi’s sister Pop, the most competent and confident character in this entire series. Defeating evil witches is one thing, but Pop has demonstrated she can handily cross swords with Doremi any day of the week, and her silence will not be bought for cheap. My personal suggestion is Doremi give Majo Rika to Pop permanently in order to keep her quiet, but I suppose the show couldn’t make things that easy. It’s Pop’s time to shine in Ojamajo Doremi twenty-five!

Episode 25

AW SHIT POP IS A WITCH NOW BEST CASE SCENARIO WOOO

Pop’s a witch and Doremi’s a frog. There is no way this episode can be bad

SHE’S TAKEN OVER THE OP CALL THE COPS

That’s a really nice little gag. Didn’t expect a show like Ojamajo Doremi to squander some of its very limited animation on an OP fakeout, but Doremi is always full of surprises

Huh, they’ve also switched up the OP’s rendition of Magical Stage. Some nice new embellishments all around

“Ojamajo Pop’s Debut!?” I am so ready

“We’re not witches yet, we’re witch apprentices.” I’m not sure futzing with the letter of the law will get you out of this one Hadzuki, but I appreciate the effort

Pop and Doremi’s interactions here are great. I also appreciate that Pop treats Plush-chan just as condescendingly as ever in spite of knowing Plush-chan is conscious

Some smart parallax scrolling across multiple planes in the shop. Creating a sense of depth here helps draw the audience further in, and subsequently emphasizes the seriousness of the current situation. Small visual choices like that can really impact the viewer’s perception of a sequence – if this were shot from a standard ceiling perspective like many of the shop’s conversations, this would just feel like mundane exposition. Placing us at Doremi’s level and manipulating the camera to create depth get us close enough to her perspective that we feel vulnerable to the consequences of this dramatic turn

And Majo Rika immediately says Pop must become an apprentice too

“This way, I’m her senior.” Doremi, you were already her senior. Becoming a senior witch apprentice just means Pop will have even more opportunities to embarrassingly dunk on you

Oh my god, Doremi’s eating gerbil face is so good

Now Pop continuously torments Majo Rika while she’s doing anything. I can live with this

“Magic glue and many other such things and more.” I shudder to think of the purpose of magic glue

Pop already putting the moves on Dela to earn her Apprentice Tap. I knew Pop would be dangerously good at this

It turns out Dela is actually an easy mark, which doesn’t really speak well to Majo Rika’s own negotiating abilities

I mean, frankly, pretty much every witch so far has been calamitously incompetent. Pop could be running this whole society in half a year

Pop clears the first half-dozen or so witch training hurdles all on her first try. I appreciate that the show understands it has characterized Pop as unfathomably competent, and is cashing in on that portrayal for this extremely terrifying sequence

Doremi gets her first chance to pull rank on Pop, but Pop actually handles her newbie cleaning duties like a champion

Doremi and Pop briefly share a moment of solidarity when nobody buys their magical goods, but then a discerning art collector comes in and buys Pop’s whole collection. Woe is Doremi, all victory to the mighty Pop

Pop’s bringing her Apprentice Tap on her school trip, which certainly spells trouble

I really like that Pop and Doremi have a subject they can actually have a full conversation about now. In spite of Ojamajo Doremi generally being extremely good at fleshing out the various personal lives of its characters, Pop has remained somewhat distant from Doremi for the length of the series so far. Doremi has occasionally demonstrated her fundamental sisterly concern for Pop, but when the two have conversations, they’re pretty much always just ragging on each other. That is often how sibling relationships play out, but it’s pretty one-dimensional, and having them be able to converse as equals on other subjects would really help both their characters

Even at kindergarten, Pop’s power knows no bounds. Everyone wants her to spend the sleepover with them

Doremi is worried, but all her teammates have total faith in Pop. Woe is Doremi yet again

Kazuhiro is looking down, so thoughtful good friend and general champion of the people Pop asks him what’s wrong. The class trolls start ragging on Kazuhiro, but avatar of justice and scion of best behavior Pop strikes them down

Kimitaka is the name of the troll. I assume he was also the troll from the first Plush-chan episode, though I’m not certain

Kazuhiro is homesick, so to keep him from feeling bad, Pop emphasizes the fact that he has to be here, and that the two of them should work together to get back at Kimitaka. This is friggin’ kindergarten, and Pop is expressing more emotional intelligence than many high schoolers. That’s not unbelievable, though – she’s just a really good kid, and a really great part of this cast

Jeez, her speech here is just perfect. I actually remember moments like this from overnight camp stays, where some camper had to be talked down by the counselors

PILLOW FIGHT MONTAGE WOOO

Kimitaka starts telling ghost stories and terrifying his classmates, and of course Pop stands up to defend them. Wherever there is injustice, Pop is there

Oh my god, Pop is going to use magic to scare the living daylights out of Kimitaka. Justice need not be merciful to be true

Aaand now her ghosts are terrifying the other students and also the faculty. Welp, they can’t all be winners

“You created those ghosts, so you need to make them disappear.” At last, Doremi gets to act like the big sister

I’m not sure I’ve been fully appreciating how adorable it is that Pop’s hair-ears pop out of the top of her witch hat

And Done

HELL YEAH. That was pretty much everything I was hoping for from this episode and more. Actually making Pop into another witch apprentice was the most entertaining direction to take this story, and though I’m not sure that will actually last, her first adventures as a witch were wonderful to behold. Pop stayed perfectly true to her strong mix of fundamental competence, competitiveness, and occasionally overbearing brashness, meaning both her victories and failures this episode felt solidly earned. I’m happy to see Pop jumping up to top billing in the Doremi universe!

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