Nanoha Takamachi is one of the most well-known anime characters in the industry. Not only has she starred in 3 different series, but her second theatrical film will be released later this year. If you aren’t familiar with the Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha franchise, it’s all action-packed, girl-on girl (pun intended) battles with beams and energy balls flying everywhere with some drama about making friends. Perhaps not surprising given the type of content, the two main audiences for Nanoha are polar opposites: little girls and men in their 20s and 30s.
Since Nanoha’s second anime series, she has gained the nickname of “white devil” and is the source of the “befriending” meme. Nanoha’s method of making friends isn’t like you’re average girl. Rather than trying to talk to a potential friend or get to know them better, she uses some excuse to blast them with her most powerful attacks. If they survive, they become one of Nanoha’s friends, and if not, then better luck next life.
With Nanoha’s reputation as one of the most powerful and deadliest magical girls in anime, it’s hard to remember that there was once a time when she was just an innocent little girl working in her family’s café. Some might find it shocking that Nanoha was originally a side character in the erotic game Triangle Heart 3. The game later received an OVA called Triangle Heart –Sweet Songs Forever– which was Nanoha’s debut in the realm of anime.
The concept of Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha came a couple years before the OVA though, in the form of Triangle Heart –Lyrical Toy Box-, a short 3 minute clip showing Nanoha as a magical girl.
Fans of the series will notice a few differences between the clip and the actual series, such as Nanoha sporting a magical wand rather than a destructive staff, the appearance of her battle uniform, and the presence of Kuon (a fox spirit from Triangle Heart) rather than Yuuno (a magical ferret). Had Nanoha stayed with this initial concept, she might not have gained the popularity that she enjoys today.
So which version of Nanoha do you prefer, the original innocent and cheerful little girl, or the blast-everything-to-oblivion white devil?