Day Break Illusion is an anime series produced by AIC and directed by Keizo Kusakawa. The series is streaming on Crunchyroll on Saturdays.
The main character of Day Break Illusion is a 12-year-old girl named Akari Taiyo who is obsessed with Tarot cards and is an apprentice at a fortune telling shop. Akari’s mother, Hinata, was a fortune teller; she passed away about two years prior to the start of the series. Akari now lives her aunt, uncle, and cousin Fuyuna. Fuyuna is a bookworm who studies hard and strives to be at the top of her class.
It’s mentioned during the first episode that Akari’s mother was a gifted fortune teller, and that Akari’s readings are always right. Akari also has plants in her room that grow rather quickly; in fact, one has grown out of the window and goes over to her cousin’s room.
One day at school, after midterm exams, Fuyuna gets attention from some classmates for having the top scores in her class. Unfortunately, Akari is also in the class, and is giving a Tarot card reading at the same time. A crowd gathers around Akari, and the students who had been paying attention to Fuyuna go over to see what Akari is doing. Fuyuna becomes jealous.
One night, Fuyuna becomes possessed and turns into a plant demon. She goes into Akari’s room and attacks her. Just as it seems the demon is going to choke the life out of Akari, her Tarot cards suddenly activate and she undergoes a transformation into a magical girl. With help from the Tarot cards, Akari defeats the demon. Unfortunately, Fuyuna is killed in the process and Fuyuna’s existence has been erased; it’s as if she had never lived. Another battle takes place at the fortune telling shop, where Akari undergoes her magical girl transformation once again.
After watching the first episode of Day Break Illusion, I think the best way I can describe this is that it’s a magical girl series that uses Tarot cards. By the time I finished watching this first episode, I found it to be a bit odd, and it didn’t help that a couple of the events that are portrayed in this episode are done in such a way that the viewer isn’t entirely clear what’s going on or what has just happened. Tone-wise, it seems this is going to be a “dark” magical girl series; in other words, it feels like it’s a bit closer to the tone of Puella Magi Madoka Magica than the tone of Sailor Moon or Cardcaptor Sakura.
While I wasn’t terribly impressed by this first episode, I think viewers who enjoy shows like Puella Magi Madoka Magica may enjoy Day Break Illusion. I will be watching the next episode of this series to see if maybe it might get a little more interesting now that the premise, characters, and the world the characters inhabit have been established.
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