DVD of the Month - August 2006


Volume 1


In the real world, if a ten-year-old reported for teacher duty at a prestigious academy like Mahora, it would raise a lot of eyebrows. Not only would it be tough for the students to accept such a situation (how could they be expected to listen to or respect a professor who’s younger than themselves?), but the tabloids would be all over it. In the world of Negima, the students are quick to accept Negi, and the Weekly World News never comes knocking. In fact, the only one who’s suspicious of the bratty Brit is Asuna Kagurazaka, who’s only opposed to his presence because he replaced the teacher she had a huge crush on.

It’s not just Negi’s age that makes him special. Turns out he’s a wizard-in-training who’s in the final stages of becoming a Magister Magorum. Naturally, he’s gotta keep that aspect secret, otherwise he might not be able to finish his training. Too bad for Negi, then, that Asuna finds out right away. But instead of throwing him under the bus, she maintains a love/hate relationship with her new mentor, even though every time he sneezes around her, some part of her clothing comes off in embarrassing fashion. The flirtatious interplay between this unlikely couple is half of the show’s cheeky charm.

Based on Ken Akamatsu’s popular comic series (available in the US from Del Rey Manga), the Negima anime nicely balances the inherent comedy of Negi teaching hyper-cutesy Japanese girls the English language and the seriousness of his wizard training. While the prepubescent Negi has little romantic interest in the girls, his class seems to love the pipsqueak prof. In one particularly hilarious scene, they chase Negi down with a T-1000-like determination after he drinks a love potion meant for Asuna to use on her teacher-crush Takahata. And in another episode, they have a breast-size contest to determine who gets to live with Negi.

Negi’s class, 31 girls of nearly every size and type (including a robot and a ghost), loves the little guy—especially the ultra-shy Nodoka, who gets all fluttery anytime she’s around him. After the girls get to know Negi, the show turns more serious for the last two episodes of the disc. An overbearing, chain-smoking, wise-cracking ermine named Chamo shows up to help (read: force) Negi find a girl suitable to be his magical partner. And in the sixth and final episode of the volume, Negi gets to the bottom of why students are being attacked on a haunted avenue near campus.

Negima is a fun and sweet show, the anime equivalent of Harry Potter that takes the young-wizard-in-training concept and mixes it with a throng of cute schoolgirls. What’s not to love about that?

—Chris Johnston

More Negima coming

Good news for Negima fans. A second anime TV series was recently announced in Japan for debut later this year. The most interesting detail of the report is a switch in studios from Xebec to GAINAX and production house SHAFT.


  • Available: August 2006
  • Publisher: FUNimation Entertainment
  • Running time: 150 min.
  • Rating: TV-PG
© Ken Akamatsu • KODANSHA, Kanto Maho Association. Licensed by Kodansha through
FUNimation® Productions, Ltd. All Rights Reserved.