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W.I.T.C.H: The Magical Girl Show which Greg Weisman wrote the second season for.

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Greg Weisman for those who don't know, was a producer for shows like Young Justice and Spectacular Spider Man, pretty much anything the guy touches is really good and well worth watching. Unfortunately he was only a producer for the second season but the first season is pretty decent as well, although I'll be honest, the roller-coaster ride that the last 17 episodes take you on once the second season's storyline gets going is the main reason this show is worth watching, not because the show before that is bad or anything but the experience that those last 17 episodes take you on is just absolutely incredible. The show also has an amazing European theme song that we didn't get in America.

Earworm for BNM

I feel like going through this series on an episode by episode basis and jotting down some thoughts so let's do this.

- Hay Lin asking her grandmother, Yan Lin if her sneeze heard around the world is one of those “becoming a woman things” is a brilliant case of injecting a bit of adult-ish humor into children's media. Even if you are too young to understand the full context of the joke most people in the show's audience will understand what she's referring to.

- Irma giving Cornelia a hard time so often is a really nice touch. Irma is honestly a comic relief character for this type of show done right. It's strongly implied, although I don't think they ever outright say, that she uses her humor to an extent as a coping mechanism to deal with whatever stress she is dealing with.

- Yan Lin revealing right away that she was once a Guardian as well is interesting considering that's kind of a big deal in season 2. The comic does this as well during it's version of the scene where the girls are told about the whole Guardian thing.

- The initial reaction to the news varies wildly, with Irma excitedly asking “when do we start” while Cornelia doesn't believe any of this and Taranee is seemingly willing to accept this as an explanation for her sudden pyrokinesis, despite the fact that she is actually afraid of fire, and Will is struggling to accept her role in all of this.

- Throughout the episode they awkwardly cut to Meridian where Caleb and his rebel friend are trying to steal some powder from Phobos's castle and than escape from Phobos's army when the plan goes horribly wrong. It's a really awkward way to introduce the conflict on Meridian and it feels incredibly forced. We are also introduced to Phobos and Cedric during all of this. Phobos is a kind of generic evil overlord type villain and Cedric is his second in command who shapeshifts into a giant snake man with 18 different clashing colors. They're at least extremely genre savvy but overall Phobos is kind of a bland villain.

- Caleb mentions to his partner during all this that his informant learned that Phobos has learned that the true heir to Meridian's throne is alive on earth. That's like two different Season 1 plot threads being stealthily brought into play before they’re properly introduced. A lesser show would have basically ignored them completely so it's nice the writers were smart enough not to just pretend these things aren't happening until they come up in the show. He splits up with his partner but ends up being cornered by Cedric.

- Eventually while the girls are getting finished testing out their powers a portal to Meridian conveniently opens for Caleb to cross through, only for Cedric to follow suit and drag him back. The girls try to save Caleb but unlike say… a Power Rangers show, they don't conveniently become extremely good at using their powers the first time they use them and they're only able to drive Cedric back to Meridian with Caleb in tow.

- The scene afterwards where they're sitting around the table talking about what just happened is brilliant. There's a very real sense of dread here and Yan Lin essentially telling them that they could very well get themselves killed if they can't learn to work together is a good touch.

Overall it's a solid introduction to the series. The Meridian subplot's lack of context for anything is a bit of an issue although I do like how it briefly intersects with the main plot. It feels a bit convenient but overall I thought it tied together quite nicely.

 I feel like generally each of the girls from the start get a fair share of individuality. A lot of shows where a team of people come together make the team that inevitably gets formed feel like some kind of collective instead of a group of individuals coming together towards a common goal. The original Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers is a really good example of that. W.I.T.C.H avoids that problem beautifully, each of the girls feel very distinct from eachother and by the end of the series all five of them become strong, well developed characters in their own right. It's easily the show's greatest strength and it's something the show gets right from the start.

Overall, it's a solid enough start. Probably a 6.5 or a 7 out of 10 from me.

I do like Greg Weisman, but I don't know if I want to get into this series.  Is season 1 skippable if you want to just try season 2, since you suggest that practically the entire season 2 is good.

Yeah you could probably skip season 1 if you really wanted to.

Actually hold that thought, I'm going to go through season 1 and figure out which episodes are worth skipping.

Episodes 1-3 are all worth watching. 1-2 kind of works as a two-parter, showing how the girls become guardians and it shows them starting to come together. It also has the debut of Gargoyle.

Episode 3 is worth watching because the events within get referenced a fair bit in season 2. It also marks the first (and only) appearance of Raythor in the first season who becomes a major character in season 2.

If you haven't been convinced to go through the whole season than Episode 6 features the debut of Trill and the Tracker, who both play bigger roles in season 2 than they do in this one. It also has some amazing world building for Meridian.

Episode 8 has the four dragons Origin story for the girl's powers and features the bit of quicksand that is eventually brought to life as sandpit in season 2.

Episode 10 is just a cool episode that also has the debut of Frost the Hunter. Even without that it's still one of the best episodes in the season.

14 Shows how Elyon was finally brought to Meridian and introduces us to her adoptive parents..

19 features the debut of Caleb's father and Jeek.

24 introduces Tynar. It also introduces the whole Mr. Huggles ownership plotline that continues into season 2.

26 is the season finale and is worth watching for that reason alone. It's also pretty solid although it does feel a bit rushed.

Maybe if you need more season 1:

Episode 18 features the Horn of Hypnos and is kind of fun. It also features the Mage although she debuts in a different episode and is kind of just the "mysterious oracle type" character.

Episode 23 has a really cool battle going for it.

Episode 25 is when Matt finds out about Meridian and his girlfriend's double life.

Episode 5 introduces the Mage, and the Heart of Kandrakar's ability to unmask people using mystical disguises.

Episode 20 is a good one that explains who Ms. Rudolph is. There's a specific scene that might confuse you a bit in season 2 but otherwise you can probably skip it.

Honestly all of Season 1 is worth watching. Season 1 suffers from having a fairly limited season-wide story arc stretched to it's limit that builds up to a poorly paced finale but it's certainly worth watching. There's a ton of really good character development and great moments. Even in season 1 it's hard not to get invested in these characters and the world they inhabit. They're also really good at making each episode feel like something happened in it that brings things closer to the finale. The only real filler episode I can think of is the Horn of Hypnos episode.

It's only really bad when you compare it to season 2, which has a much better villain and an incredible story arc layered on top of what made season 1 great, all of which builds to the last few episodes which tie both seasons together for the finale, which, although I don't feel like it was meant to be the series finale, serves as a brilliant conclusion for the animated series.

I've thought about checking out W.I.T.C.H. before, but I'm wary about getting into any series Greg Weisman writes. He's kind of the harbinger of death for pretty much any series he's on since he takes so goddamn long to pay off on any of his plot threads that many of his most promising series are usually cancelled before they do.

See: Young Justice, Spectacular Spider-Man, Roughnecks: Starship Troopers Chronicles, Beware the Batman.


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