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Mai Hime

Mai Hime
Mai-hiME.full.241917
General Information
Type Anime
Created by Masakazu Obara

Hiroyuki Yoshino

Years on Air 2004-2010
Episodes 26
Others 1 OVA

Japanese Title: 舞-HiME

English Title: My Princess

The story centers on Mai Tokiha, a seemingly ordinary high-school girl who has recently transferred to the Fuuka Academy with her sickly younger brother, Takumi. The elite Fuuka Academy harbors a number of mysteries, involving both fellow students and staff. Very soon after arriving at the Academy, Mai finds herself bound to a Child, a part-spiritual, part-mecha creature, that can only be summoned and controlled by girls with the HiME mark.

Mai is told that there are other girls who are similarly marked, and that they must use their powers to protect the unwitting populace from Orphans, monstrous creatures with abilities similar to the HiME's Children. Mai is very reluctant to become involved at first, because of her protective role towards her brother. However, other HiME begin to manifest around her, each with very different motivations and goals for using (or not using) her powers. As the Orphans become more numerous and more aggressive, even Mai is drawn into the conflict.

However, even before all of the HiME have revealed themselves, the major twist in the series is revealed - rather than fighting Orphans, the true purpose of the HiME is to fight each other for power, akin to Highlander. Many of the girls/women reject this scheme at first, having formed tight bonds of friendship, or at least allegiance. But several people and organizations seek to control the power of the last HiME standing, and so begins a tragic cycle of manipulation and willful destruction - a HiME battle royal.

Adding to the tragedy is the fact that defeated HiME are not necessarily killed, but instead they must sacrifice the person most dear to them. In most cases this is a lover or sibling, but the close relationships among the Academy HiME cause quite a bit of criss-crossing. In a few notable cases, one HiME defeats another, only to find that the loser's "special someone" is dear to them as well.

By the end of the series, Mai has become the last HiME, but she is emotionally devastated by the brutal events leading up to that point. This leaves her somewhat ill-prepared to face the ultimate enemy of the HiME, the Obsidian Prince, a supernatural being in human form. His emergence always parallels the rise of the HiME, and at least one interpretation of the series holds that the Prince is a final temptation trial for the HiME.

The TV series has two alternate endings. In one, all of the defeated HiME emerge to support Mai against the Obsidian Prince, and after the Prince's defeat, all of the victims of the HiME battles are restored to life, seemingly unaware of the events leading to their deaths. In the alternate version, included on the DVD release as an incomplete scene, Mai seems ready to succumb to the Prince's seduction, only to regain herself after remembering the sacrifices of the other HiME. She defeats the Prince, but it is implied that the dead will remain dead.



Mai Otome

Mai Otome
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General Information
Type Anime
Created by Masakazu Obara

Hiroyuki Yoshino

Years on Air 2005-2010
Seasons 3
Episodes 33
Others 1 OVA

Japanese Title: 舞-乙HiME

English Title: Dancing Maiden

My-Otome's story takes place in the distant future on the planet Earl, colonized by immigrants from Earth centuries ago. "Old technology" has survived in the form of nanomachines that allow female virgins to take the role of Meister Otomes - bodyguards, attendants and warriors that serve the royalty of various kingdoms.

Arika Yumemiya has come to Windbloom Kingdom in search of her mother, whom Arika knows was an Otome. On her arrival she meets the top Coral Otome student, Nina Wáng, and Windbloom's heir to the throne, Mashiro Blan de Windbloom. The series follows Arika's progress as a student at Garderobe Academy and the machinations of those desiring the destructive power of the old technology for themselves.



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