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I'll work hard to become a witch who can make everyone smile. Because to me, magic is the most wonderful thing in the entire world!

Akko, The Road to Arcturus

Atsuko Kagari (アツコ・カガリ Atsuko Kagari?), more commonly known by her nickname Akko (アッコ?), is the titular main protagonist of Little Witch Academia. She is a first-generation witch from Japan and an admirer of Shiny Chariot.

Appearance

Akko final design.png

Akko is a slightly pale-skinned girl of average height with long, straight, chestnut brown hair in color which reaches about just below her shoulder blades in length with matching blunt square side-bangs on the left side along with a section of it tied onto a half ponytail on the back of her head and large crimson eyes.

As with other Luna Nova students, Akko's standard Luna Nova Academy uniform consists of a white long-sleeved shirt, a navy blue vest, a tie of the same color, and a skirt. While outside the school, she wore a buttoned jacket covered with a cape over the said uniform set. During practical classes and school functions, on the other hand, she wears a uniform consisting of a long navy blue hooded tunic, a pointed hat, a body belt, stockings, and long boots. Like her friends Lotte and Sucy, she completes her uniform with a red sash.

On days off, Akko wears a white t-shirt and brown shorts, which also doubles as her pajamas. She has also been shown occasionally wearing an orange turtleneck over a t-shirt and brown sports shoes with white laces (on some occasions in Blue Moon). While on her way to Glastonbury for Luna Nova's opening ceremony, on the other hand, she wears an orange hooded jacket, blue turtleneck sweater, brown shorts, and red boots.

6-year-old Akko

When she was still a 6-year old child, Akko's hairstyle looked almost the same as her current one, but shorter and lacked a ponytail, and with the same bang texture. She also has the same type of eyes.

Concept artwork and a promotional poster of the first short film reveal that Akko originally had teal eyes, along with slightly longer hair.[2]

Personality

Akko excited

In both short films and anime series, Akko is best described as a cheerful and optimistic yet impulsive and determined girl, which is consistent with her normally exaggerated expressions. She is always up for a challenge, even if it seems too difficult for her and everyone else. As Akko is very social, kind, and truly compassionate, people are often drawn to her happy disposition. She will do anything to pursue her dream to become a talented witch like Chariot, even if it means to put her life in danger. Additionally, Akko has an idealized view of witches inspired by her childhood idol Shiny Chariot, which clashes with her fellow students' perception. Being a fan of Shiny Chariot, she displays a poster of her in her room, and Shiny Chariot is often idealized in her fantasies. It is worth mentioning that she is also very immersed in her own fantasies and sometimes does not account for other witches' opinions. This does not mean that she is a selfish person: In the short films, Akko realizes she almost jeopardizes her friendship with Sucy and Lotte, thus resulting in her sympathizing with what she had done.

In anime continuity, Akko's personality remains consistent with in short films, though her overall characterization fleshed out better and her worst flaws being toned down a bit somewhat. Throughout her early months in her enrollment at Luna Nova, Akko earned infamy among her peers and the academy's staffs as much as Amanda where in her case, for her idealized view on witches, inferior magical abilities, and impulsive and reckless behavior that saw her repeatedly breaking rules. Contrary to Anne Finnelan's poor opinion about her and true to Ursula's statements, that is not to say Akko being unable to change to better, let alone aware with her own faults. Her first visit to the Fountain of Polaris saw her understood that she must work hard to achieve her dream, a lesson that motivated her to improve her magical skills and even unlock the Second Word of the Seven Words of Arcturus. The events of "What You Will" highlighted how much Akko's insecurities over her magical abilities plagued her to the point of comparing herself with the seemingly flawless Diana. She initially believed that emulating Chariot and outperforming Diana was the best way to prove herself only to be rebuked by both Ursula and Woodward (the latter did so by changing her appearance into the likeness of Diana), with the former advising that she should prove herself with her own qualities instead. Akko eventually let's go of these insecurities through liberating Vajarois from her sadness with the help of Lotte and Sucy and unlocks the third Word in the process, ending the tradition of keeping Vajarois appeased via sacrifices once and for all. The moment when she unlocked the Fourth Word while saving Lotte's home community from Greenman Disease saw her understanding that she must be patient. Though she took those lessons at heart and learned that it was her determination to be like her idol, Shiny Chariot, and desire to spread joy with magic which allowed Shiny Rod to appear before her in Arcturus Forest in the first place, Akko still retained her impulsive and reckless attitude.

Though she has a little discipline for studying and finds most classes boring, Akko is very clever. This is first seen in "A New Beginning" when she lures the Cockatrice so that it gets entangled in the vines of a Mandrake plant. In "Night Fall", she gets Lotte into the city by catching a ride in Luna Nova's food delivery truck. And in "Blytonbury's Undead Travelogue", she is able to quickly bring Mr. Holbrooke to Luna Nova by grabbing onto the Bell Tower bell and using a Mending Magic spell to reunite it with its clapper, knowing the clapper is on campus as Miranda Holbrooke's staff. Akko is very creative and eschews tradition for innovation. However, she does not have a great sense of her own capabilities and her overconfidence contributes to a tendency to look before she leaps, and her motivation to do her very best and inch closer to Chariot is often dismissed as naivety by others.

Despite her impulsiveness, ultimately Akko is a selfless witch who will risk her own well-being and reputation to do what is right, such as during "Orange Submariner" when she used her last bit of magic in her wand to break open the fishing cage to save a fish's family rather than using it later when they find Pisces (although she coincidentally found Pisces in the cage), "Luna Nova and the White Dragon" when she convinced her friends to go with her and take back the Sorcerer's Stone from the dragons, and during "Sleeping Sucy" when she volunteered to be the "sacrifice" to go into Sucy's mind and wake her up. In "New Age Magic", her kind heart has allowed her to feel sympathy towards fairy laborers of Luna Nova who went under the strike and joined their cause in getting more magical energy. Indeed, her kindred spirit saw her gained so many friends and allies as well as earning respects from her rivals, and loyalty between them which stemmed from her compassion proved so strong it inspired them to do the same; Ursula sacrificed her Broom Flight ability to protect Akko from the cloud of Wagandea pollen for the sake of her future while Diana entrusts Akko her premium Chariot Card, the only thing she lacked in her collection, in order to rekindle her resolve to be a witch like Shiny Chariot after the awful revelation surrounding their very idol and role model. Diana herself acknowledges how envious she was to the Japanese' positive traits which saw her changed the lives of many around her to the better, including those who stubbornly attempted to maintain status quo at the beginning, as much as she appreciated them, leading the Cavendish concluding that Akko's beliefs being the only true key to save the magical world.

Abilities and Equipment

Magic

In both continuities of the franchise, because of her mundane background and discipline for studying which initially leaves much to be desired, Akko is very incompetent with magic, especially in the use of magic brooms despite having practiced this skill several times. However, her potential with magic is unmistakable through her ability to use the Shiny Rod that once belonged to Shiny Chariot with impressive prowess and making significant progress in improving her magic.

In anime continuity, her difficulties in performing magic which worse than in short films (most notably being unable to take off with her magic broom) later explained to be the result of Dream Fuel Spirit used by Chariot in her magic show, draining out her magical capabilities. As a result, she had to work extra hard than her peers in order to be able to use magic properly, which she eventually succeeded after saving the world and restoring Yggdrasil as confirmed in VR Broom Racing, though her skill in broom flight leaves much to be desired at the moment.

Like most witches, Akko can project beams of energy by using her wand, (which becomes great explosions while using the Shiny Rod in its offensive forms), able to levitate objects or people and move them to a certain extent, and change the form of other animals. With Ursula's help, Akko was able to learn to repair objects with magic and later to repair larger objects.

Metamorphosis Magic

Mouseakko.gif

Akko's signature magic mastered through hours of training as she was initially terrible with it. During the Samhain Festival, she was able to transform herself at will and maintain it for extended periods of time. By becoming different animals, Akko is able to take advantage of their different qualities for certain situations. She can also use the same magic to disguise herself into someone else in conjunction of item the person in question carry most, if not all the time.

Other Abilities

Determination

A few scratches won't stop me! If I say I'm gonna ride a broom, then I will ride it! Even if you don't like it, you're gonna help me win this race! Don't even try to shake me off now. I'm going to hang on until the end of the world!

Akko demonstrates her insane determination, Don't Stop Me Now.

Her greatest strength, however, comes from the strong determination that allowed her to overcome even the most challenging obstacles. The fact that she keeps moving forward on planning the Happy Time Project for the Witch Parade (where Sucy and Lotte left said project out of stress from Akko's impulsive control freak attitude), facing an enormous magic-eating dragon, riding the wild sentient Shooting Star broomstick, trying to overcome a magically enhanced polar bear to know if she could get the power of stars, trying her best to study for exams, trying to solve one of the most important magic rules after having broken one, as well as talking to the Blue Moon Abyss' omniscient spirit are testaments of her determination.

Equipment

Shiny Rod

A powerful staff that may very well the embodiment of the power of seven stars that make up Big Dipper itself. Although Akko is initially unable to use it at will, she is able to use it in moments of great importance in response to her feelings, managing to revive the Seven Words of Arcturus. It can transform into a bow and create an arrow from thin air. She also managed to transform it into a great ax to launch a frontal attack and a grappling hook, a mixing machine and a flying broom. After breaking the seal of Grand Triskellion, the Shiny Rod merged with the Grand Triskellion, allowing it to access its powerful world reconstruction magic.

Akko eventually loses the Shiny Rod towards the end of the anime, after she used it to help spread the magic throughout the world, allowing it to disappear into the stars.

Shooting Star

A legendary, sentient flying broom filled with its own magical energy. Akko rode the broom twice; first during the Luna Nova Cup in "Don't Stop Me Now" and again during the battle against the Noir Rod missile in "Tree of Leaves".

Voice actors

Language Voice actor
Japanese Megumi Han
English Erica Mendez
France Claire Tefnin
German Franciska Friede
Italian Stefania de Peppe
Polish Zuzanna Galia
Brazil Ana Elena Bittencourt
Spanish Latin America Marlene Pérez
Spain Roser Vilches


Misc.

Etymology

  • The name Atsuko means "honest" (敦) (atsu) and "child" (子) (ko).
    • Depending on the writing, Akko's given name can have various meanings, such as "warm child" (温子?) or "passion/heat child" (熱子?).
  • Atsuko's surname Kagari means "campfire, fishing fire, beacon basket" (篝).
    • Akko's surname can mean both "bamboo basket/frame" (?) and "light, shine" (火狩?) in Japanese.

Trivia

  • Akko's English voice actress, Erica Mendez, also voices Ryūko Matoi from Kill la Kill, another Trigger production. Similarly, Diana Cavendish and Lotte Jansson's voice actresses, Laura Post and Stephanie Sheh, also voice Ragyō Kiryūin and Nui Harime in the same series.
  • The way Akko obtains the Shiny Rod is different between the anime and the first short film. In the short film, she found it within Luna Nova during a treasure hunt. However, in the anime, she found it in the Arcturus Forest while trying to become a student at Luna Nova Magical Academy.
  • Akko was named after the main character Atsuko "Akko" Kagami from the first magical girl series created, Himitsu no Akko-chan.

Akko's recurring injury

  • One recurring event/running joke in Little Witch Academia series is that Akko has her face flat with bruises from mild harm:
    • The first short film has her face smacked against the desk by a small fairy summoned by a professor for dozing off.
    • Some episodes of TV Series also have Akko receiving this injury where the most notable one being the pilot episode, "Starting Over", in which Akko fell flat on the face after unintentionally crashed onto Sucy.
    • In the Chamber of Time game, she got crashed against the ground after failed to stop an animated skeleton model for a second time.
  • According Naoko Tsutsumi, Akko is supposedly not the sole first generation witch who attended Luna Nova, but nevertheless the latest known instance since others like her was not featured yet until this point.[3]
  • As confirmed during Studio Trigger's Livestream at Anime Expo's channel in Twitch, Akko's residence is located at Chiba Prefecture. The same event confirmed that she became fluent in English thanks to her determination to become a witch like her idol Shiny Rod and that said language being required for Luna Nova. [4]
  • According to Megumi Han during Studio TRIGGER's promotional livestream of Chamber of Time when inquired about Akko's future after Luna Nova, she proposes that Akko would take a similar path Ursula did; becoming a magical performer and traveling around a bit before applying to Luna Nova as a new teacher who helps out students like her.[5]
  • According to an interview with Yoshinari, Naoko Tsutsumi, and Shūhei Handa, Akko and Andrew are supposedly ended up together with the latter confessed his feelings to the former. However, Yoshinari disliked such because it would have meant that Akko was working for Andrew's sake and not for herself so it was ultimately scrapped. Yoshinari instead sees their current relationship as a "sort of playful guy-guy relationship", which Handa agrees with.[6]
    • Ironically, their English voice actors, Lucien Doge (Andrew) and Erica Mendez (Akko) are together in a relationship in real life.
  • Judging from her energetic yet impulsive behavior and short-attention-span, it's implied that Akko suffered mild ADHD at best. She even stated arguably to be a problem child for the same reason at school according to her bio in Chronicle Book. [7]
  • Akko can be equated with following characters through their similarities:
    • Naomi Yumeno: Both Akko and Naomi are clumsy yet determined and energetic female protagonists who got caught in a fierce rivalry between two powerful characters (Chariot and Croix for Akko and Gai Kurenai/Ultraman Orb and Jugglus Juggler for Naomi) in their respective show. Another similarities include them holding no grudge towards the one who unintentionally harm them in the same conflict (Gai/Ultraman Orb injured Naomi who trapped within Galatron he fight due to his Thunder Breastar form's rampage that continued until he ran out of power while Ursula/Chariot handicapped Akko's magic potential due to tricked by Croix to use Dream Fuel Spirit).
    • Luz Noceda: Both dream of becoming witches, both hailed from mundane family, and both have role-models whom inspired them to become witches (Though Luz's role-model is fictional, Chariot is a real person).
  • As revealed by Yoshinari's interview in Little Witch Academia Chronicles, Akko was originally planned to immediately fall in love with handsome guys early on in the TV series' development. The idea was scrapped entirely due to opposition from the producer, the staff and the VAs.[8]

Other Appearances

  • Akko makes a cameo in the post-credits scene of the thirteenth and final episode of Space Patrol Luluco, another anime series produced by Studio Trigger. This announced the Little Witch Academia television series.
  • A character that looks similar to Akko made a cameo in Pokémon the Series: Sun & Moon episode, Mounting an Electrifying Charge![9].
    • Another similar looking character also featured as a recurring background character in SSSS.Gridman where she appears in Episode 2, Episode 3, Episode 5, Episode 8, and Episode 13. Unlike in Little Witch Academia, however, Akko's SSSS.Gridman incarnation lacks her trademark ponytail and the color of her eyes somewhat inconsistent (either brown or crimson in different shots).[10]
  • Akko's hat makes a cameo appearance in episode 4 of BNA: Brand New Animal among the hats Michiru tried shortly after regaining her human form. [11]

References

External links

Littlewitchacademia-jp-favicon.png Atsuko Kagari at TV.LittleWitchAcademia.jp

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