Mashle: Magic and Muscles is a muscle-powered magic comedy manga and anime that has been airing since April 2023. The story revolves around Mashle, a bowl-cut boy who rises to prominence at a magic school without using any magical powers.
Due to its striking resemblance to Harry Potter and One Punch Man in terms of its setting, it has become a hot topic of conversation.
In this article, we aim to thoroughly explain whether Mashle: Magic and Muscles truly bears similarities to Harry Potter and One Punch Man.
Resemblance to Harry Potter
- Uniform: White shirt, red tie, and black robe
- Popular sport in the story, “Duelo,” resembling “Quidditch”
- Mash, a new student, participates in the inter-house “Duelo” competition
- Similar method of sorting new students into houses
- Headmaster Wallberg bears a striking resemblance to Dumbledore
- Screaming Mandragora
- Subtitles in the style of Harry Potter
When attempting to create a fantasy set in a magical school, it’s inevitable that certain aspects will resemble Harry Potter. However, while reading Mashle: Magic and Muscles, what I sense is more of a deliberate homage rather than outright plagiarism.
Many elements, such as the sports and characters featured in the story, have a familiar vibe. Here, we will explain the truth behind these similarities!
Are the sports in the story similar to “Quidditch” from Harry Potter?
One of the reasons behind the suspicion of plagiarism is the resemblance between the sport called “Duelo” in the story and the sport “Quidditch” from Harry Potter. Both involve flying on broomsticks and scoring goals in the opponent’s net.
The fact that Mashle, a new student, participates in the inter-house “Duelo” competition also brings Harry Potter to mind.
Do the characters resemble Dumbledore and Malfoy?
The character Lloyd, who constantly bothers the protagonist whenever he gets the chance, bears a striking resemblance to Malfoy, Harry Potter’s rival. Additionally, the headmaster of the school Mashle attends, Waterberg, looks remarkably similar to Headmaster Dumbledore. These resemblances contribute to the accusations of plagiarism.
Despite being labelled as plagiarism, this work appears to be very appealing due to its well-developed characters in both cases.
Resemblance to One Punch Man
When it comes to muscle-powered protagonists, we have Saitama from One Punch Man. Saitama calmly defeats any formidable enemy with a single punch, and Mash’s resolution through his fists certainly bears similarities.
Both characters acquire superhuman power through relentless muscle training, and they effortlessly defeat their opponents with minimal facial expressions.
However, Mash has a clear goal of becoming a divine visionary, and as the story progresses, the similarities to Saitama seem to diminish.
Is Mashle Boring?
There are mainly two reasons why it is often criticized as boring.
Lack of Impact in The Comedy
The first reason is that the comedy fails to make an impact.
The perception of what makes a comedy funny varies from person to person. However, since Mash, the main character, has a relatively low-key demeanour, the series tends to rely more on subtle humour that slowly builds up rather than providing laugh-out-loud moments.
Personally, I found the interaction between Mash and the old man after breaking the door in the first episode quite amusing. However, it’s true that when looking at Mash as an individual character, he may not be extremely hilarious.
Superficial Characterization of Characters
The second reason is the superficial characterization of characters.
The pasts of characters other than Mashle are not thoroughly explored, and there are not many scenes that showcase the feats of the godly visionaries, whom Mashle aims to surpass. This may leave fans of the non-Mashle characters feeling unsatisfied.
However, since Mashle: Magic and Muscles is primarily a comedy-focused work, I personally don’t feel the need to scrutinize the depth of the characters or the plot.
In fact, I hope that Mashle: Magic and Muscles continues to introduce outrageous parody elements without worrying too much about the finer details, and becomes a legendary series.
In this article, we have explained the rumours of plagiarism surrounding the manga Mashle: Magic and Muscles.
It has become clear that the series has intentionally incorporated elements that readers can recognize, reaching a level that can be called homage.
While it may attract criticism from various rights holders, I hope that Mashle: Magic and Muscles will continue to grow without being folded, becoming a new generation’s equivalent of “Gintama” and forging its own path!