Somewhere between 2006 and 2007 I picked up a manga with curious potential. I was still quite new to anime and manga, having started watching and reading during the summer of 2006. But of course, I had watched the famous Love Hina, the one they all recommended to me. So I found out its author was currently penning another series, reason enough for me to pick it up.
And that marked one of the defining features in my manga reading career: my love for Negima.
I didn’t exactly realize it at the time. The first two volumes contain mostly the same fluff that fills Love Hina, enjoyable but not much more than that. Eva’s volume is bad-ass, but still fairly straightforward. The Kyoto arc was where it began to dawn on me. The volumes after Kyoto made me curious and hungry for more. The festival arc sealed it, beyond a shadow of a doubt. The magic world arc extrapolated even further on that.
Negima is the incarnation of awesomeness. It has everything I love.
It has clever action scenes, incredible build-ups, equally incredible climaxes, Latin and Greek (my form of fanservice), some of the best world-building exposition, a wealth of interesting details, my first and favourite yuri pair, cunning planning paired with subtle foreshadowing, great moments of showing of character, not afraid to be more, never anything but itself, close to a modern epic.
I’m not going to let its rather disappointing ending ruin all of that. Negima is my favourite manga of all time.