Miki Sayaka

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Character
Name: Sayaka Miki (Japanese: 美樹 さやか, Hepburn: Miki Sayaka); Oktavia von Seckendorff
Occupation: Magical Girl, student
Relationships: Kaname Madoka (best friend, classmate); Tomoe Mami (magical girl mentor, upperclassman); Kamijō Kyōsuke (childhood friend and former crush); Shizuki Hitomi (friend); Sakura Kyōko (friend, former enemy); Akemi Homura (enemy, comrade, classmate)
Fandom: Puella Magi Madoka Magica
Other:
Miki Sayaka in monochromatic blue. Her cape is in tatters; her unbalanced posture and blank expression seem to indicate despair.
蒼青の騎士 (Blue Knight) by きびなご (Pixiv ID 650841)
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Miki Sayaka is a major character in the 2011 anime series Puella Magi Madoka Magica and its subsequent multimedia franchise. Along with her friend Kaname Madoka, she is a second-year student at Mitakihara Middle School. As a magical girl, she seeks to uphold her romantic ideals of heroism and justice.

Spoiler Warning: This article or section may contain spoilers. If this bothers you, proceed with caution.

Fandom

Reception and Popularity

Like other members of the Mitakihara Five, Sayaka is generally liked by fans, many of whom appreciate her design, power set, idealism, determination, and relationships with Madoka and Kyōko. Many also found her spiral into despair and self-destruction to be moving and sympathetic.

However, some have felt that Sayaka is unappealing as a bullheaded, self-pitying brat who lashes out at her friends while being obsessively consumed by a petty crush. In an poll conducted on 4chan's /a/ board after the airing of the tenth episode, fans ranked Sayaka as the least popular of the Mitakihara Five.[1]

Sayaka's reputation may have improved after the airing of the last episode, in which she peacefully accepts her fate and moves on to the afterlife. Fans have generally praised her appearance in Puella Magi Madoka Magica the Movie: Rebellion (2013), where she appeared as a powerful, confident magical girl working as an agent for the Law of Cycles and capable of commanding her own witch incarnation. In a 2016 poll of r/MadokaMagica, Sayaka narrowly edged out Madoka as the third most popular girl in the series (including Rebellion).[2]

In a 2012 BIGLOBE poll, Sayaka was voted as the second most tragic female character in anime,[3] and took eighth place in a 2015 Charapedia poll for the same category.[4] In another 2012 BIGLOBE poll, Sayaka ranked 18th in the category "Anime Girl that Attracts the Most Desperate Fanboys".[5] Sayaka took second place for "Top 7 Blue-Haired Anime Heroines" voted by fans asked in Akihabara in 2014.[6] In a 2014 Anime News Network (ANN) poll of "Who is your favorite blue-haired character?", Sayaka placed fifth with 8.5% of votes.[7] In a 2015 Charapedia poll, Sayaka ranked 17th among "Characters who deserve their own anime".[8] Sayaka was also voted as the eighth most popular SHAFT heroine in 2016.[9] That same year, in a Charapedia poll asking fans to list the "best anime magical girls", Sayaka placed 9th with 226 votes.[10] In a 2018 ANN poll, Sayaka's witch form was voted as the second coolest monster form in anime.[11] That same year, in a Manga.Tokyo poll, Sayaka's line "I… am so stupid" was voted as the eighth most famous premortem line in anime.[12] In a 2020 Ani Trending News poll, Sayaka was also voted as the eighth best female anime character of Winter 2011.[13] That same year, Sayaka was voted the 14th best magical girl character in a poll by Anime! Anime!.[14]

Fanon and Tropes

Fan works focused on Sayaka often emphasize the motifs associated with her in canon, such as water, music, mermaids (particularly the classic tale of "The Little Mermaid" by Hans Christian Andersen), swords and knights, and her own witch form, Oktavia von Seckendorff.

The fact that Sayaka and Madoka were able to meet up one last time to watch Kyōsuke's violin playing, along with the nature of Madoka's wish, has resulted in many fans suggesting that Sayaka's soul, although erased from the world, now resides in the same plane of existence that Madoka inhabits, where she will watch over all the other magical girls along with Madoka. Alternatively, some have speculated that Madoka was simply fulfilling her role as a psychopomp in the same way she would for all other magical girls, ensuring that Sayaka could peacefully pass on from the world.[15] Either way, Sayaka is a common subject of speculation regarding the afterlife in post-series fics.

The fandom has commonly believed Sayaka to have the lowest potential as a magical girl out of the Mitakihara Five in the original 2011 series—weaker than veterans Mami and Kyoko, the battle-hardened Homura, and the peerlessly powerful Madoka. However, fanon assessments of her capabilities may have changed after she went toe-to-toe with Homura in Rebellion, and successfully fended off Holy Mami’s Tiro Finale in Magia Record.

In the humorous Meduka Meguca memes, Sayaka is commonly referred to as "Seyiku".

Shipping

KyōSaya, the pairing of Sayaka and Sakura Kyōko, is considered the juggernaut pairing for Sayaka, and perhaps second only to Madoka/Homura in terms of popularity within the PMMM fandom. A smaller following see romantic potential between Sayaka and her close friend Madoka, especially since they were canonically separated from the rest of the cast in the series finale. After Rebellion, Homura/Sayaka gained some popularity as an enemyslash pairing. Comparatively few fans ship Sayaka with her childhood friend and crush, Kyōsuke, and they often do so in the context of an AU in which he is more considerate of Sayaka and her feelings.

Notable Pairings

Fan Works

Fan Fiction

"The Disappearance of Miki Sayaka" SpaceBattles SpaceBattles archive by Aku-donoFandom: PMMMDate: 15 June 2011Status: Complete
Bystander deathfic.
Universal FFN FFN archive by Greg Wong (Shadow's Forge)Fandom: PMMMDate: 23 August 2012–14 December 2013Length: 53 338 words, 20 chaptersStatus: CompleteGenre: Adventure, Hurt/Comfort
Post-canon space fantasy fic featuring Sayaka as the protagonist, with original characters making up much of the supporting cast, including a love interest.
Fate: Desiderantes Affectibus FFN, SpaceBattles, SV by Rowan SevenFandom: Fate/Zero, Puella Magi Madoka MagicaDate: 26 May 2014–1 May 2020Length: 136 555 words, 17 chaptersStatus: WIPGenre: Supernatural, Adventure
"A doomed master summons an equally tragic servant in the Fourth Holy Grail War. Together, can they change fate or will their journeys once again end in sorrow? Pre-Rebellion."
"A Story Where Love And Courage Win" FFN FFN archive by A Hopeful OneFandom: Fate/Zero, Puella Magi Madoka MagicaDate: 16 September 2020Length: 16 883 words, 1 chapterStatus: CompleteGenre: Friendship, Tragedy
"(One-shot.) Matou Kariya summons Miki Sayaka for the Fourth Fuyuki Holy Grail War, in the hopes of changing the fate of a single girl. Featuring: divine intervention, Sayaka having a crush on King bloody Arthur, and Kariya getting some sense slapped into him. Pre-Rebellion."

Fan Art

Solus Ipse Pixiv by Aya KyunikDate: 23 February 2011
Fan art of Sayaka as she appears in the seventh episode. The artist's caption contains the quote "DENY THE OBVIOUS. UPHOLD THE INANE.", which is a PMMM fandom motto that may have originated on 4chan.[16] Some comments refer to Sayaka with the nickname "Bersayaka" (バーサヤカー Basayaka), a portmanteau of "berserker" (バーサーカー basaka) + "Sayaka".
♫ ♬ ♪ ♪ Pixiv by ANTENNA牛魚Date: 28 April 2011
Sayaka appears as an angelic presence in a modified version of her witch form; she guides the now-healed hand of her childhood friend and crush, Kamijō Kyōsuke, as he performs with his violin.
約束の時への使者 (Emissary to the Promised Time) Pixiv by mマコトDate: 30 November 2013
Artistic rendition of the Rebellion scene in which Sayaka summons Oktavia by stabbing herself in the heart. The artist's caption describes this scene as "summoning instead of suicide". While this piece still depicts self-destruction and violence, Sayaka triumphantly gains new power through rebirth, instead of succumbing to death by despair.
さやかちゃん (Sayaka-chan) Pixiv Date: 15 May 2014
Analog art. No spoilers.
猛獣使い (Beastmaster) Pixiv by ももこDate: 19 June 2014
Sayaka and Oktavia. One commenter likens their relationship to that of Stand users and their Stands in JoJo's Bizarre Adventure.
魔剣士さやかちゃん (Demon Swordfighter Sayaka-chan) Pixiv by 紫紀Date: 25 June 2014
The artist's caption expresses a desire for Sayaka to fight with Oktavia's power. While Sayaka fights alongside Oktavia in Rebellion, and magical girls make use of Doppels in Magia Record, in fan works, magical girls may gain the ability to fuse with their witch forms, allowing them to use witch abilities yet retain their sense of self—essentially becoming gijinka of their own witches.
Oktavia Pixiv by ボルボネDate: 23 May 2015
Water and mermaid motifs.
成れの果て (The End of Life) Pixiv by 純Date: 2 June 2015
Sayaka with her associated motifs.
蒼青の騎士 (Blue Knight) Pixiv by きびなごDate: 8 June 2015
Miki Sayaka in monochromatic blue. Her cape is in tatters; her unbalanced posture and empty expression seem to indicate despair.
Day 10: Sayaka Tumblr by KitsureDate: 10 October 2017
Inktober. Sayaka in an outfit derived from Oktavia von Seckendorff.
さやかちゃん (Sayaka-chan) Pixiv by AsHDate: 3 April 2020
Fan art of Sayaka as she appears in the first season finale of Magia Record: Puella Magi Madoka Magica Side Story.

Ask Blogs

Memes

Meta

Actually, the interpretation of PMMM of Sayaka being the main character makes sense if you go by the movies (Part 1: Beginnings specifically)... Tumblr Tumblr archive by celtic-pyroDate: 21 Jun 2017Length: 195 words
Sayaka may be framed as a protagonist or decoy protagonist within the narrative.
[Spoilers] Character Analysis: Sayaka Miki r/MadokaMagica r/MadokaMagica archive by leafbladieDate: 11 Aug 2018Length: 1 524 words
Meta. Analyzes both series canon and quotes from Gen Urobuchi.
Now that I think about it, I think part of Sayaka’s problem was not having the emotional maturity to be less hard on herself... Tumblr Tumblr archive by celtic-pyro, darkvioletcloud, 4chan anon (via screenshot)Date: 2 Sep 2018Length: 436 words
Commentary on the symbolic placement of the Soul Gems on the Mitakihara Five, then the thread deviates toward defense and analysis of Sayaka's character. Thread contains a screenshot of a humorous 4chan thread that makes positive comments about other members of the Mitakihara Five while bashing Sayaka as a "whore".
My unintentional Sayaka's character essay r/Sayaka archive by FaevalioDate: 30 Jul 2019Length: 1 712 words
Meta from a fan who came around to liking Sayaka.

Links

Archives and Communities

Resources

References

  1. ^ Puella Magi Madoka Magica Popularity Chart (as of Episode 10 posted to /a/ in 2011. (Accessed October 2020.)
  2. ^ gfdt. Best Girl Statistics and More Giveaway Information! posted to r/MadokaMagica on 23 August 2016. (Accessed October 2020.)
  3. ^ Flanagan, William. "POLL: Who Is the Most Tragic Heroine Character in Japan?", posted to Crunchyroll on 3 August 2012. Retrieved 9 December 2018.
  4. ^ Cadorniga, Carlos. "Anohana, Madoka Magica Characters Rank in Most Tragic Heroine Poll", posted to Anime News Network on 2 June 2014. Retrieved 9 December 2018.
  5. ^ "信者が必死なアニメキャラランキング", posted to BIGLOBE (in Japanese) on 22 April 2012. Archived from the original on 25 April 2012. Retrieved 8 April 2020.
  6. ^ Loveridge, Lynzee. "Akihabara Fans Vote For Favorite Blue-Haired Heroine". Anime News Network, 2 June 2014. Retrieved December 9, 2018.
  7. ^ Loveridge, Lynzee. "7 Incredible Geniuses", Anime News Network on 21 June 2014. Retrieved 24 May 2020.
  8. ^ Green, Scott. "Japanese Fans Name the Support Characters Who Deserve Their Own Anime Series", posted to Crunchyroll on 16 January 2015. Retrieved 25 May 2020.
  9. ^ Green, Scott (May 12, 2016). "MadoGatari Nagoya Exhibit Announces Results Of Top Ten (Plus Two) Favorite Shaft Anime Girls". Crunchyroll. Retrieved 9 December 2018.
  10. ^ Baseel, Casey. "The 20 best anime magical girls, as chosen by 10,000 Japanese fans", posted to Charapedia on 14 May 2016. SoraNews24. Retrieved 9 December 2018.
  11. ^ Loveridge, Lynzee. "7 Notorious Animation Meltdowns", posted to Anime News Network on 18 August 2018. Retrieved 25 July 2019.
  12. ^ Kvasnovski, Tea. "Survey Results: Which Anime Character's Dying Line Is The Most Famous?" posted to Manga.Tokyo. Retrieved 24 May 2020.
  13. ^ "DECADE AWARDS: Puella Magi Madoka Magica wins Winter 2011 Run-off Polls", Ani Trending News on 5 May 2020. Retrieved 24 May 2020.
  14. ^ "アニメに登場する、好きな魔法少女キャラは?「CCさくら」木之本桜を抑えたトップは…" posted to Anime! Anime! (in Japanese) on 8 February 2020. Retrieved 24 May 2020.
  15. ^ Puella Magi Wiki. Sayaka Miki - Sayaka's Farewell. (Accessed October 2020.)
  16. ^ Puella Magi Wiki. Thread Glossary. (Accessed October 2020.)