The Premature Death of Mx0
I enjoyed Mx0.
Rather than just ‘mana’ or ‘life energy’ or wands or staves, the magic-users in that story-verse also relied on a card system even more complex than those offered by commercial banks. Students at the magic school didn’t just get a regular iron card, followed by silver and finally with gold reigning over all. There were eight different levels for the first years to get through before they could even make it to silver. Later on, depending on what kind of magic user a student was, he would be grouped into one of the following groups. White gold, strengthened alloy or rare metal.
If a game company made an RPG game based on the card magic system in this manga, I would highly recommend you buy it.
It is unfortunate that this manga died a premature death because, otherwise, we would have seen proper character development. For the ninety odd chapters, all the characters that appeared gave me feel-good vibes and was easy to like or identify with. Even for the ‘villains’. But then, Mx0 was a shounen manga so even today’s foes would become tomorrow’s friends.
I get the feeling that the author was patiently waiting for his characters to mature before letting them face the truly difficult adversaries. In fact, the last story arc of the manga was a training arc where the main protagonist was working really hard (and creatively) to level up. You know, the kind of thing that is a selling point of sports manga.
If this manga had continued, we might have been able to see a bigger magical world with the Japanese magical school facing off with magical students from other schools or even other countries. Like the Tri-wizard tournament in the Harry Potter series.
But the sales pitch that sold me this manga wasn’t the complex magic system or the potential of its characters. No, I started reading the first chapter because they told me it was a comedy of misunderstanding. About a weak protagonist who couldn’t use magic but who was somehow forcibly recruited as a student into a school for magic-users. Not only that, but due to a series of misunderstandings, the other students and faculty members came to see him as the strongest student.
I like that kind of comedy, okay?
This manga should have gotten a lot of laughs and fans and yet it still died a premature death. Many fans have been speculating about the reasons and I have come up with some theories of my own as well.
First of all, I do not think Mx0 was cancelled due to lack of fan service. A lot of popular works out there, such as Bleach which is still being serialised, are lacking in fan service as well. And Mx0 placed a little more emphasis on the romantic sub-plots than Bleach.
I think the lack of support could be due to a unique feature of the magic system in Mx0. In other stories about magical schools, like Negima and Harry Potter, if magic works then it works pretty much everywhere.
But in Mx0, magic only worked in special places like a magic school and even then, students were not allowed to keep their powers and memories about magic after graduation save for a select few. That abnormality violated one of the rules of shounen manga! Hard work IS supposed to be rewarded, but you can hardly call it a reward if it is so… transient, right?
And remember, steadfast friendships tend to be formed in the midst of magical battles, so erasing all magic-related memories meant that the things that are supposed to mean anything in shounen manga did not matter in Mx0. Friendships? Poof! Hard work? Pfft! Powers? Confiscated! What was the point of anything in this manga?
Yeah, so maybe readers refused to invest too much emotion in Mx0 and that led to a lack of support which in turn led to a premature cancellation.
Having said all that, I would like to say that I enjoyed this manga while it lasted. Also, this manga ended prematurely, right? Maybe if it had continued, the author would change the rules of magic and allow the characters to retain their powers and memories. But we will never know unfortunately.
I give Mx0 a 9 out of 10.
Teck Y. Loh