When Yuuki Yuuna wa Yuusha de Aru aired, it had already been almost 4 years since Madoka Magica. At that point I think it was no longer constructive or interesting to try to compare every magical girl show to Madoka, but in this case the similarities were too numerous to ignore. That’s not to say Yuuki Yuuna wasn’t interesting at all in its own right, but I feel like the comparison had to be made.
Suisei no Gargantia was one of the first anime that I watched weekly from start to finish while it was airing. It was also my first mecha show. I’ll fully admit that I picked it up only because I heard Gen Urobuchi was working on it (I had recently watched Madoka for the first time), as I wasn’t really interested in mecha or sci-fi in general at the time. The show quickly charmed me with its cast of characters and the visuals of the setting, though, so I forgot about the story kind of quickly.
Selector Infected WIXOSS as well as its sequel, Selector Spread WIXOSS (which sounds more like something you’d put on your toast) is truly the Madoka Magica of the card game genre. Had I not used such an obviously memetic comparison I would have actually been half-serious, because WIXOSS did tick many of the same boxes as Madoka. I imagine most people expected it to not be just about innocent card game playing, and that’s exactly how it turned out. The storylines weren’t necessarily predictable, but I feel like the atmosphere of the show very much was.
It’s been so long since I first watched Madoka that it no longer has a place on my “current favourite shows” list. Not because it doesn’t deserve it, it’s just kind of been bumped down and off by more recent anime experiences. Another reason for this is that Madoka is one of the few shows that I’ve seen more than once. I think I’ve seen it 4 or 5 times, actually, if you count the recap movies. That in itself should be a testament to how highly I regard it, but it also means that the experience that remains in my mind is not the memory of watching it for the first time but the memory of the subsequent rewatches.
Rewatching an anime can be very different compared to watching it for the first time. The suspenseful experience of a story-driven show can turn into one where you focus on appreciating the art, animation and music. The same can happen with a slice of life show, or maybe not. Maybe you want to rewatch a SoL for exactly the same experience as the first time, and a half-decent SoL should allow for that. Rewatching a show with a very specific or unique gimmick can give you the opportunity to examine the more subtle aspects of it, just like how rewatching a comedy gives you another chance to laugh at the jokes you didn’t get the first time around. More generally, rewatching a show can make it easier to pinpoint what you really like and dislike about it.