Thursday, July 24, 2014

2channel Anime Saimoe 2014: 10 Questions With Madoka Kaname

Miyuki Shiba, who qualified for the 2014 2channel Anime Saimoe Tournament, talked with the current Saimoe Prime Minister of Japan and defending AST champion, Madoka Kaname, over lunch in Mitakihara Town, Japan.

Miyuki: Madoka, do you ever get tired of this?
Madoka: (laughter) I wish I did. No, I never do. I mean, since I've already made it to the top, I approach this tournament as just fun and games because this is my last-around along with Homura-chan and all the others, and I don't get anything out of reelection but if it happens it happens. But I now play in this for fun, and that's good.

Miyuki: Tell me about your time as the Saimoe Prime Minister.
Madoka: I attend a lot of events, convene over special meetings involving the finest young women across the country and the world, and I do a lot of PR events. But I've had time to focus on my studies and prepare for university, because Homura-chan told me that growing up involves getting a good education and doing well in school. So there's that.

Miyuki: You always mention Homura, as in Homura Akemi, right?
Madoka: Yes.
Miyuki: Have you settled your differences with her regarding ideals and all that?
Madoka: We have. Every good couple is balanced. Co-existing harmoniously is key to making a relationship balanced and strong. I uplift her spirits, she keeps me humble. I learn from her, she learns from me. I could never hate Homura-chan completely because I need her like she needs me. It's a beautiful thing, you know?

Miyuki: Who do you think deserves to take over for you next year?
Madoka: Um...that's a pretty good question. I'm friends with everybody from the idol group mu's. I like their personality, their genuine approach to life, and they did perform at a number of functions that I attended. My personal favorite is Nico, if only for the twin tails. But she has a mindset similar to me in a number of ways and she sometimes asks me for advice.

Miyuki: What do you think of the new system of determining who wins the seat?
Madoka: Anything to help the election organizers draw more interest in this race helps, and they know that people need to come out and vote, but set out the field in a firm and fair process. That's what it boils down to.

Miyuki: Do you think Homura sabotaged her chances of making an impact in this race by sealing part of your powers and using it for her own?
Madoka: Homura-chan explained to me why she did it, and at first I didn't approve of it but eventually I came to accept it and then embrace it because I'm still here and I was given this chance to govern this country for one year. But it may not be so much Homura-chan's undoing as it is the past several years, you know? Because my team and everyone from Saki, including some friends of mine who play mahjong like Nodocchi and Shizuno, they have been dominating the race the past several years. So it's really unfair to say that Homura's choice to change the rules negatively impacted her chances to win this thing directly. It's recent history overall that make the voters do their own Rebellion Story and we're seeing that right now.

Miyuki: Do you think, in your heart, Homura should win this race for the Saimoe Prime Minister's Office?
Madoka: I imagine being the universe's watchdog is already enough work for her and Homura-chan thinks like a full-time mama because of all the loops, so she wouldn't gain anything, really, from winning this. Really, though, I won't know if my suspicions are right until Saturday, when she faces many of the greats from Saki.

Miyuki: Since you and Homura are concepts at the very heart of things, have you ever thought of having kids?
Madoka: Well, first, they'd all be girls. (laughter)
Miyuki: That's true.
Madoka: Second, one child is enough. Third, she'd be the concept of humanity.
Miyuki: Really?
Madoka: Yep. And finally, I'd name her Honoka, a combination of our names and also named after Honoka Kousaka, a good friend of mine from mu's. She'll grow up to be a good singer and tour the world and be famous.
Miyuki: But she won't be a magical girl, right?
Madoka: No contracts.

Miyuki: There have been lower vote totals among the new entrants, myself included. As for you, you're getting more votes, along with other veterans in this process. Are us new faces this bad?
Madoka: I believe every girl deserves a chance and a look. Some people, like Ai Haibara, really have no business being in this competition and yet the voters put her on. Those are the anons, who, I suspect, have been voting in this competition since its inception about a decade ago. I look up to Ai. She reminds me of Mami-san in a way because of her wiseness beyond her years. But really though, the big names come from my pools. They come from Saki's pools. All the veterans have made a bigger impact than the new entrants because the names resonate better.

Miyuki: Finally, where do you think you will finish in your preliminary group?
Madoka: Upper middle. Not top three, but maybe in the middle, along with the usual suspects from Saki and Teru-san. My stock has dropped, but not by much, and I'm fine with that. I head into this new race with dignity and a smile.

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