Amatsuki Meguru is a girl who innocently aspires to be a hero of justice and the cool Kisaragi Sumire who grew up in the strict Kisaragi household… The two girls who are in their 3rd year of middle school end up getting orders from a mysterious hedgehog named Miruku-chan and turn into Twin Angels in order to fight evil! Meguru is always cheerful but sometimes a bit too forceful. Meanwhile, Sumire isn’t accustomed with being around others. Despite their differences, as they work together, they start opening up to each other.
Twin Angels BREAK is where I’m getting my magical girl fix this season. On first glance, it appears to be one of the tamer submissions to the genre, but I do love a magical girl anime so I’m willing to give this one a chance. After all, these are just two middle-schoolers with ideas of peace, love and justice after all. They of course have their magical familiar to guide them in their responsibilities – Miriku the winged hedgehog (who appears to be just a cuter, less evil version of Zundar from Cute High Earth Defense Club LOVE!) who realises that he has his work cut out for him as the twin angels are seemingly incapable of working together as a team, using their weapons or beating the bad guys. And this is just the very basic standard magical girl stuff.
To be fair, the stakes don’t seem particularly high or specific here. Meguru and Sumire have been tasked with fighting some antagonists and just generally putting a stop to their antics in order to protect the people of earth. It turns out that the not-so-secret information their hedgehog chum was withholding from them was that they should also be collecting a special kind of energy in order to save the previous twin angels, who sacrificed their lives in order to protect the transformation coins that Meguru and Sumire are now in possession of.
Twin Angels BREAK has had a few predecessors and its origins ultimately lie in a line of Japanese pachinko machines, which you can see reflected in the opening credits and in little details such as the cherries on the uniforms of those that attend St. Cherrine Academy. This particular Twin Angels arc is a spin-off, so you don’t need any real prior information to enjoy this one.
Essentially, Twin Angels BREAK appears to be your standard magical girl fare, one that it seems to be religiously sticking to. The transformation scenes don’t really bring anything new (if anything, they seem to be taking elements from other famous magical girl franchises, with the transforming scenes harking back to the days of Wedding Peach). The girls then go on to fight your typical monster-of-the-day appearance and their identical group of goons. It’s a straightforward shoujo with a few of the usual tricks and gimmicks. Not that this is necessarily a bad thing, as what this anime does isn’t exactly bad per se, but if you’re looking for an anime that brings something new to the genre, then this isn’t it.
It’s also rather simplistic in its storytelling and layout, and this can also be seen in the vaguely fantastical setting and in the character design. The main focus is of course on Meguru and Sumire and their growing relationship, but we also have their fellow students, mildly humorous and energetic as they are. But that’s as far as development goes for them. Jokes are usually kept light, incidental and slapstick.
There’s also a certain antagonist that emerges after a few episodes that is clearly based on Tuxedo Mask. They refer to him as ‘Nasty Knight’ but with his dark hair, mask, tuxedo/dinner jacket and his talent for throwing sharp-stemmed roses, it clearly cannot be anyone else. At this point, I really don’t think there’s going to be any new surprises hidden up this anime’s sleeve.
I’m hoping that Twin Angels BREAK starts to focus a lot more on its world-building and adding depth to its characters. The episodes are as long as any other standard anime so I see no reason for them not to include this. I’m looking for more of an objective than Meguru winning over the distant Sumire and them learning to be half-decent magical girls together. It needs to step up its game before it is considered to be anything but unremarkable and forgettable in an already over-saturated genre.