Kyoko Sakura

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"If I see you wasting food like that again. I'll kill you." - Kyoko Sakura, Episode 7.
Kyoko Sakura
Kyouko character art.png
Japanese Name 佐倉 杏子 (Sakura Kyōko)
Voiced by Japanese: Ai Nonaka
English: Lauren Landa
Italian: Veronica Puccio
Cantonese: Choi An Hung
French: Nayeli Forest

Kyoko Sakura is a veteran magical girl who appears to Sayaka and Madoka in episode 5, but not before making a brief appearance at the end of episode 4. She is introduced as an abrasive, fiery, and self-centered girl who fights only for self but later adopts a more sympathetic outlook.

In the spin-off manga Puella Magi Madoka Magica: The Different Story, Kyoko serves as the main protagonist alongside Mami Tomoe.

Contents

General info

Physical features

  • Age: 14 - 16 (estimated)
  • Height: 156-158 cm
  • Eye colour: Red
  • Hair colour: Red

Other

Personality

"Ever hear of something called the food chain didn't they teach you it in school. The witches go and eat weak humans and then we hunt em down and eat the witches. It's the natural way of things the weak gotta give in to the strong." - Kyoko Sakura, Episode 5.

Kyoko first appeared as a magical girl who came from another town to take over Mami's turf after hearing of her death. According to the Drama CD "Farewell Story", Kyoko is from the neighboring city of Kazamino. She was initially introduced as a callous, arrogant magical girl who simply has supernatural powers and had abandoned the premise of justice and benevolence. In short, she didn't hesitate in any sense in using her magic powers for her own selfish benefit and did not mind sacrificing humans to familiars if it meant obtaining a Grief Seed.

Kyoko was the elder daughter of a preacher. Her father started to deviate from regular doctrine and was excommunicated for it - Kyoko used her wish to get her father more followers; however, upon finding this out, her father went insane and killed the entire family except Kyoko, (in Madoka Portable, Kyoko is gone when her father kills her family) then committed suicide by hanging himself from the church ceiling. After her family's death, Kyoko was introduced to the principles of "Dog eat dog world", "you get what you pay for" and "Kill or be killed/Eat or be eaten" and started to live by them. She uses her magic and other abilities mainly for herself due to the belief that helping somebody else will only result in something bad.

Kyoko seems abrasive and selfish but has a somewhat soft side as well. She values food a lot and chastises those who waste it. After her father lost supporters, Kyoko and her family (parents, Kyoko herself, Momo, her little sister) nearly starved. She may have experienced trauma from her family's death giving her an eating disorder of sorts, or erasing the memory of hunger. She is rather tomboyish, with barely any femininity at all if any. This is where she differs from Sayaka's boyishness: whereas Sayaka has a bit of a girlish streak due to the fact that she is interested in romance, Kyoko only demonstrates a nice side, and likes stories with happy endings.

She seems to be very faithful in God as during her final moments in the original timeline getting killed by Oktavia (she does live in the world reconstructed by Madoka, but does not remember her), she prays to God to show her a "happy dream." . It's uncertain what exactly this means, but presumably she is pleading to be shown something happy like her family all being alive and happy, in the form of a dream, or to allow her to die peacefully and ascend to Heaven.

  • Kyoko's backstory is told in the Drama CD "Farewell Story".
  • A NewType article goes into more details regarding Kyoko's character and behavior.
  • Rebellion shows that under normal circumstances, Kyoko has the typical attitude of a lazy, slackerish schoolgirl, and loses many of the abrasive points of her personality.

Story

  • In episode 6 when she approaches Sayaka as she is about to visit her friend Kyosuke, Kyoko scoffs at Sayaka's wish saying that if she wanted him that badly, she should just go in and break his hands and legs, leaving him crippled and they could be together.
  • Kyoko, in an effort to restore Sayaka to normal after she became a witch, takes Madoka to Oktavia's lair. After taking many hits defending herself and watching Madoka's attempts to reach her prove futile, Kyoko "sacrifices" herself to stop Oktavia and save Madoka. This also allowed Homura, who had just arrived, to rescue Madoka and leave the witch's lair with her.
  • In a previous timeline, Kyoko is killed by a mentally broken Mami after the fight with Oktavia. Having gone mad after learning what happens to magical girls with time, Mami shot and destroyed Kyoko's Soul Gem, killing her in what she saw as a mercy kill that would save Kyoko from becoming a witch.
  • Kyoko is brought back to life by Madoka's wish in Episode 12

Kyoko in Oriko Magica

This section may contain major spoilers!

Please refrain from reading if you are not yet familiar with all the latest media released.
"Just like what you read in manga, right? But it ain't like in manga where your overflowing love and courage is enough to give you the strength to save your butt. And ain't nothing can bring dead family members back to life." - Kyoko, Puella Magi Oriko Magica, Chapter 1.
  • In Chapter 1, Kyoko takes in Yuma, a young girl orphaned when her parents are killed by a witch shortly before Kyoko kills it. Yuma has no one to go back to, and together they break into bathhouses and share a hotel room. Kyoko tries to instill her own morals into Yuma, and tells her to never disrespect and waste food. Yuma accompanies Kyoko to fight Witches, and when checking for wounds on Yuma after she has a close call with a witch, Kyoko learns of Yuma's abusive past, and sympathizes with her even more. Kyubey appears and tells Kyoko about the murders of magical girls. He attempts to contract with Yuma, but Kyoko stops him and tells Yuma to never become a magical girl.
  • In Chapter 2, Kyoko leaves Yuma in their hotel room and goes out to fight a witch alone. Kyoko nearly dies from having her legs and arms torn off by the witch. Yuma, who has just made a contract with Kyubey, uses her new healing powers to save her. Kyoko is incredibly angry that the girl didn't heed her warnings about contracting, but after Yuma cries about fearing that she's useless and that she had been pushed to the edge by a girl named Oriko, Kyoko subsides. She does, however, promise to make Oriko pay for what she'd done.
  • In Chapter 3, Kyoko appears only once, and speaks with Mami about the recent murders of magical girls. Mami is looking for a "black magical girl", but Kyoko knows only as much as Mami does. Yuma then flips Mami's skirt in defense of Kyoko, thinking that Mami was bullying her caretaker. Kyoko tells her that she is mistaken about Mami, but thanks her for trying to be helpful. She asks Mami about Oriko, but Mami doesn't know anything and Kyoko will tell her no more about it.
  • In Chapter 6, Kyoko and Yuma fight together with Mami against Kirika after saving the blond magical girl. The fact that a magical girl will become a witch in her despair, but Yuma's words unite them again and together with Mami, they defeat the witch Kirika.
  • In Chapter 7, Oriko is killed, and everyone seems to be safe, but Oriko's final attack kills Madoka. Kyoko asks Yuma if she can heal her, but it's too late, so Homura resets the timeline.

Kyoko in Kazumi Magica

  • Kyoko made a brief appearance in chapter 16 of Kazumi Magica. She was mentioned in Michiru's diary, as she describes how she met Yuuri Asuka, who at that time was fighting against Kyoko.

Kyoko in the PSP Game

  • Kyoko's Rosso Fantasma makes a return.
    • It is used to daze opponents for several turns, leaving them open to attack.
  • Kyoko is the only person that can prevent Sayaka from becoming a witch.
  • Kyoko's family reappears in the game during a flashback.
  • Kyoko's witch form is revealed: Ophelia.
  • In the Homura route, Homura can choose Madoka, Mami or Kyoko to accompany her in the search for Sayaka. If she chooses Kyoko, Sayaka will be saved.

Kyoko in The Different Story

  • Kyoko's illusion ability recovers a little in the 3rd volume, when she tries to stop Mami from committing suicide. (Die with Oktavia)
  • She not only can make multiple images of herself, but also can make other kinds of illusions. She fakes Mami to believe her own soul gem is cleansed, to stop Mami from turning into Candeloro.
  • Kyoko finally is defeated by a witch and dies. Before this, she gets a grief seed from Oktavia to cleanse Mami's soul gem.
  • Kyoko and Madoka becomes secret friends when Madoka visits Kyoko.

Abilities

  • Kyoko's special attack is called "Rosso Fantasma" (Red Phantom) but for personal reasons she no longer has her illusory powers during the time of the anime events.
  • Kyoko's full ability is finally displayed in the Drama CD "Farewell Story", she has the ability to confuse her opponents with illusions as well as split herself into multiple images to confuse opponents in battle.
  • In Puella Magi Madoka Magica: The Different Story, Kyubey explains that Kyoko's magic is called "enchantment". When Kyoko rejected her power after losing her family, she also rejected her own wish. Kyubey explains that Kyoko's magic is now useless, because her subconscious mind has rejected her own wish and along with it her magical ability. As long has Kyoko's mind rejects or regrets her own wish, she won't be able to use her magic as she did before.
  • Kyoko has also displayed the ability to produce warding spells as well as demonstrated transfigurative magic, such as when she transformed her soul gem into binoculars

Observations

  • In Japan the colour red is associated with sacredness and resistance to negative energies which could be connected to both her Father's religious work and her continuing to fight after her wish indirectly caused the death of her family, something that would probably cause most Magical Girls to give into despair.
  • In Puella Magi Madoka Magica: The Different Story a news broadcast indicates that a private residence in Kazamino City was caught on fire, inside the residency they found the bodies of the three members of the Sakura family. According with police the residents were forced in multiple suicide but the broadcast doesn't mention any other details. It is not known if the police suspected the father, or if the private residency was the Sakura Church.
  • The Oriko manga reinforces the idea that Kyoko lacks a permanent residency, instead she takes shelter at a fancy hotel (it is never stated how is she able to afford it or what trick she used to obtain a room).
    • This magazine article confirms the suspicion in regards to Kyoko's income, it also supports the idea that Kyoko has the ability from her wish to charm others ("mind trick") but doesn't use them as she suppresses them subconsciously because of the trauma with her family. Her powers had been described as persuasion/hallucination.
  • Kyoko offers an apple to Sayaka while she advises her to live a life of selfishness but Sayaka refuses both of them. Sayaka believes that Kyoko's self-centered philosophy is just wrong and also rejects the fruit because she apparently believes it was stolen. Her attempt to tempt Sayaka with an apple and her suggestion to follow a path of selfish survivalism could be interpreted as Kyoko acting as the snake advising Sayaka to abandon the path of justice.

Etymology

  • Kyoko's first name contains the character for "apricot,"(杏子) a symbol of strength achieved through struggles with adversity. Her surname, Sakura (桜), means "cherry blossom", which, according to Buddhist tradition, symbolizes the transience of life.
  • The first character for Sakura (佐) means "to help" while the second (倉) means "warehouse."
    • Her last name can also be used as a first name.

Trivia

Magazine Article

Gallery

See Gallery:Kyoko

External Links

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