Sugar Sugar Rune 8

October 29, 2008

Final volume!  It’s been so long since I read the last one, it took me a little bit to get re-oriented with things here, especially since this series is so manic.  I didn’t recall the connection between Chocolat and Glacier, but I’ll take Sugar Sugar Rune’s word for it.  I definitely still like the novelty of the new familiar characters, and I especially love Duke now.

The final battle was vaguely unsatisfying in the way that all magical girl-type final battles are.  They fight with magic and feelings, and usually the strength of the heart is what conquers as opposed to any sort of brute force or cunning trickery.  Plus, a few characters from earlier in the series come back, along with… well, Cinnamon, who we’ve been waiting all series for.  Cinnamon’s role was pretty satisfying.  I also kind of liked the little twist given to the heart gem system during the final battle.  I’m not sure about the “human” implications of it, but I thought it was a nice final move.  Otherwise, the whole final battle, which takes place in two stages and pretty much fills the entire volume, felt a little rushed and messy.  Again, though, it follows most of the rules of the magical girl genre.  I think KKJ is the closest I’ve come to a satisfying magical girl finale, and even that had some weird stuff.  I can’t fault Sugar Sugar Rune for being what it is.  Magical girl endings (or at least the ones I’ve read) often feel like they’re made with animated versions in mind, and it seems like the ideas just don’t transfer to manga as well.

I liked the little epilogue.  I didn’t like the convenient excuse as to what Chocolat had been doing, and I didn’t like the character boost Vanilla was being given by the other characters… I feel like Chocolat EARNED something, and didn’t get it in the end.  But it’s hard to fault a happy ending like that, even one with semi-dark stuff running through it.

While the last volume didn’t really satisfy me, a twentysomething adult, I’m sure little girls would eat it up.  I did like the rest of the series a LOT, and I’m still shocked that Moyoco Anno could make such a fantastic magical girl series.  Flowers and Bees may be more my thing, but Sugar Sugar Rune is still gold, and it’s hard for me to deny my love for a story about two little witch girls trying to become queen of the magical world by collecting boy’s hearts.  There’s just something irresistible about it.

2 Responses to “Sugar Sugar Rune 8”

  1. Miki Says:

    I feel like mangakas do this on purpose. Have a SLIGHTLY less than perfect ending so that readers will remember. It makes me feel cheated.

    I feel the same about you in terms of the ending. Because being queen was the original goal (and because I had gotten so attached to Chocolat), when Vanilla got it instead, I was just screaming UNFAIR! I mean, having all the characters telling us Vanilla developed was unnecessary, and it doesn’t help quell my attachment to Chocolat.

    Though I know they both make good queens, and though I know that Vanilla would probably be happier than Chocolat (in fact, the manga told us straight up that Chocolat would feel confined), and though I know the point is for Chocolat to understand the path she really wants and what is truly important and it’s the journey that matters… I get the lesson; but I just feel like Chocolat so earned it, perhaps because I followed her journey.

    Maybe this is the problem with manga so clearly aimed at little girls… despite how dark SSR is at times, I always nurtured secret hope of a perfect happy endings, because of the genre. And now I can’t have it. Granted, a perfect ending (like that in the anime) made me feel discomfort too.

    The manga’s ending is a totally legitimate way to end this great series and a good one logically. It just feels slightly emotionally unsatisfying. So, yes, I understand completely your emotions.

  2. Connie Says:

    Thanks for the reaction! It’s been a long time since I read Sugar Sugar Rune, but I still clearly remember how cheated I felt when Chocolat didn’t become queen. It’s mostly Chocolat’s story, and i loved almost everything else about it, but I can’t help but think that maybe it would have helped ease the ending a little if maybe Vanilla had been a bit more sympathetic. She learns her lesson and all that, and she does everything that she needs to do plot-wise and in terms of Chocolat taking her trip, but I feel like I would have liked to have seen a little bit of the story from Vanilla’s point of view, too.

    How does the anime end? I didn’t realize the endings in the anime and manga were different.

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