Madoka Magica Episode 10: I Won't Depend on Anyone Anymore

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"I'll repeat it. I'll continue to repeat it over and over. Visiting the same time again and again, searching for the single exit out. Searching for the path to save you from a fate of despair."
"Madoka... my one and only friend. If it's... If it's for you, I have no problem being trapped eternally in this maze."
~ Homura Akemi

I Won't Depend on Anyone Anymore
もう誰にも頼らない
First airing 10 March 2011
Script Gen Urobuchi
Storyboard Shinsaku Sasaki
Episode director Yuki Yase
Animation Director Yoshiaki Itou
Kazuya Shiotsuki

Summary

Ep10 timeline chart.jpg
See also Timeline

This episode centers around Homura. Most of the mystery behind her origin and behavior in previous episodes is explained.

Timeline 1

In the original timeline for Homura, she was a normal human girl suffering from a heart disease. She is shown just released from the hospital and transferring to the Mitakihara Middle School, similar to the first episode. She differs in appearance to the Homura we know, though - she wears glasses and wears her long hair tied in two braids. Her personality also feels different - she is a lot more shy and clumsy.

Madoka, Sayaka and other new classmates try to befriend Homura, which makes her feel uneasy. During a talk with Madoka, she admits finding herself worthless, not unlike Madoka does in the timeline of other episodes. Homura's problems during math and sports classes (probably related to being out of school for a long time) contribute to her depression, which makes her get suicidal thoughts on the way from school.

Presumably because of these thoughts, she wanders into the barrier of witch Izabel. She is quickly saved by Puella Magi Madoka and Mami, with Madoka asking her to keep their jobs a secret from schoolmates. Later, during a visit at Mami's apartment, Madoka reveals that she's been contracted only for a very short time. Homura feels fascinated about her magical friends, similar to how Madoka acts in initial episodes.

Some time later, Madoka and Mami fight Walpurgis Night together, with Homura following them as a human. Mami is defeated quickly, then Madoka apparently manages to defeat the witch, but at the expense of her own life. Homura cries over Madoka's dead body, and accepts Kyubey's proposal to become a Puella Magi, her wish being "I want to redo my meeting with Kaname-san. Instead of being protected by her, I want to protect her!" The contract is formed, with Kyubey commenting that the wish has "surpassed entropy".

Timeline 2

Homura shield power use.gif

Homura wakes up in a hospital, on the date she was released in the previous iteration, having a Soul Gem in her hand. After transferring to school, she instantly tells Madoka about becoming a Puella Magi, hoping for good cooperation.

Madoka and Mami train Homura the Puella Magi, who turns out to be extremely clumsy, despite having the very powerful ability of stopping time. Meanwhile, Homura reads online guides about making explosives, contributing to improving her skills. While still clumsy, she plays the most important role when the trio - now good friends - fights with the witch Patricia.

The next scene shown is after the Walpurgis Night - after defeating the witch, Madoka's Soul Gem turns into a Grief Seed and she becomes a witch.

Timeline 3

The time goes back again, and Homura wakes up at the exact same place and time as previously. Scared and angered by the discovery of the true nature of the contract with Kyubey, she decides to tell the other girls immediately. Sayaka, who in this timeline became a Puella Magi, too, doesn't believe her and accuses her of collaborating with Kyoko, whom apparently only Homura has met yet.

Sayaka also tells that she feels afraid of Homura's explosives, which makes Homura go to a meeting of some armed formation (the building is labeled "Shaft Industries" (射太興業 Shafuto Kōgyō)) and steal some firearms, all on frozen time. Since Sayaka turns into a witch, presumably for similar reasons as in Episode 8, Homura uses the firearms during the fight with her to protect Madoka, and also defeats her, even though Madoka and Kyoko try to make Sayaka human again in a fashion similar to Episode 9.

Upon seeing the true nature of Puella Magi herself, Mami breaks down and attempts to kill all the magical girls, including herself, in order to prevent their eventual transformation into witches. She kills Kyoko first by shooting her Soul Gem and attempts to kill Homura by binding her, but before she can do so, Madoka uses her beam arrows to kill her. The remaining two fight on the Walpurgis Night together, and defeat the witch, having their Soul Gems fatally tainted, though. Madoka heals Homura with a Grief Seed she was hiding, and asks Homura to prevent her from becoming a Puella Magi next time she'll go back in time. Homura agrees, and grants Madoka one more wish of hers - killing her to prevent her from becoming a witch.

Timeline 4

Upon waking up in the familiar hospital, Homura changes her presence by magically healing her eyes, wearing the hair down and taming her emotions - just how she looked in all the previous episodes. She warns Madoka at night (with Madoka recognizing her to some extent as she says "Homu...") and goes hunting all the witches.

On Walpurgis Night, the dream sequence from Episode 1 is shown again. Homura watches Kyubey persuading Madoka and screams to prevent her from forming the contract, but Madoka doesn't seem to hear it.

Off-camera, Madoka forms the contract and defeats the witch with just one shot, but becomes a witch (Kriemhild Gretchen) herself shortly after. Kyubey comments that she may destroy the whole Earth in near future. He has collected an enormous amount of energy from her already, though, so he doesn't care about it anymore.

Homura refuses to fight Madoka the witch, saying that "This is not my battlefield," which makes Kyubey realize that she's from a different timeline.

Additional Timelines

Homura insists on repeating that particular period of time (between her awakening in the hospital and the Walpurgis Night), no matter how many times it takes, until she saves Madoka. She kills Kyubey, but he respawns in a new body, which she chases. However, he is saved by Madoka in an encounter similar to Episode 1. Most likely, these events are taking place in one of many timelines that fall between Timeline 4 and the timeline shown in Episodes 1 through 9.

  • Actually, this is the same timeline as the first episode, due to the similarities in the events. Kyubey also comments later on that Homura has 'killed' him twice before, meaning this timeline and the current timeline are the same.

Homura's monologue reveals that she is devoted to saving Madoka no matter how many times she'll have to retry.

Runes

See Runes of episode 10

Observations

"So how about we become monsters together…
And turn this world upside down?
So that… nothing bad… or sad… would remain. <br\ > Destroy, destroy, destroy it all!"
~ Homura saying her farewell to Madoka.

  • The first Drama CD further explores the events that took place in Episode 10 starting with Homura's hospitalization, her lack of self-esteem and her difficult time adjusting to a new school, and we also learn what was Madoka's first wish was. See also a relevant talk page.

About the timelines and time travel

Time traveling homura.gif
  • Homura's Past Timeline Experiences:
    • While powerful, Mami can become mentally and emotionally unstable. If she learns the truth, she's likely to break down from the pressure and kill everyone, as seen in Timeline 3 (she is unreliable as an ally). That's why Homura is cold and distant to her in the other timelines. However, in Oriko Magica, after a pep talk with Yuma, Mami accepts her fate as a Puella Magi.
      • It is later revealed that actually Homura wanted to be in good terms with Mami in the current timeline, but Kyubey backfired her plans. Homura was cold to Mami in Oriko Magica because she believed that Mami was the cause why Madoka always contracts.
    • Sayaka refuses to believe or listen to Homura's advice. She will also be prone to making the same mistakes and become a witch (her fate is inevitable no matter what). That's why Homura is cold to her and decides to kill her in the present Timeline, to stop her from becoming a witch, but she was stopped by Kyoko.
    • From past experience, Homura believes Kyoko may be the only ally left to help her in stopping Walpurgis Night. However, she did not anticipate her actions that lead to her death since this didnt happen in previous timelines. That's why she was surprised by her death in the fifth Timeline.
    • Leaving Madoka alone or keeping her distance from her will not stop her from making her wish. Nor can Homura stop Walpurgis Night on her own.
    • The only constant in previous timelines is that Madoka is the only one with a pure soul, she was the only one who called her a friend and trusted her with her life.
  • Every time Homura tries to change the past she seems to make it worse:
    • Original timeline: Mami and Madoka die like heroines and they are the only known casualties, Earth is saved (and there are no more threats to the planet). The Truth is never revealed.
      • In this version Madoka dies without regrets in her heart, she remains pure and innocent in the end thus avoids the fate of becoming a witch.
    • Second timeline: Mami dies as a heroine, but Madoka becomes a normal Witch.
    • Third timeline: Sayaka becomes a witch and is killed by Homura, Mami dies but not before she loses her sanity and kills Kyoko. Madoka still dies and becomes a witch, but not before she saves Homura from becoming a witch and Homura mercy kills her before that happens.
    • Fourth timeline: Madoka becomes a powerful Witch that will destroy the Earth, everyone dies.
    • Fifth timeline: Mami dies before learning the truth, Sayaka still becomes a witch and dies with Kyoko.
  • In timeline 5 Homura kills Kyubey once at the beginning and fails to do it again until episode 8. That's why Kyubey mentions that she already killed him twice and he realizes that Homura can use Time-Control magic

Continuity to previous episodes

  • There was initially a disagreement whether the dream sequence from Episode 1 is the event shown in Timeline 4. Evidence against this was the different shape of Walpurgis Night witch in the two sequences, and different coloring of the scene. However the Blu-ray release of Episode 1 features an updated version of the prologue scene, now looking exactly the same as in Episode 10. It is thus safe to assume that the prologue actually did happen during Timeline 4.
  • Walpurgis Night of Timeline 1 is slightly different from the ones in Episode 1's original version, Timeline 4 and Episodes 11-12.
  • While Timeline 5 looks very similar to a scene from Episode 1 (contributing to an interpretation that it is the timeline of all previous episodes), there are small diferences:
    • There is a short conversation between Homura and Madoka in Episode 1, but in Episode 10, Madoka only says "Homura-chan". In episode 1, when Madoka encounters Homura in the closed section of the mall, Sayaka surprises Homura with a fire extinguisher; in episode 10, Sayaka isn't shown making an entrance.
    • Additionally, in Episode 1 Homura is seen with one of her legs propped on a bag and is never seen taking a step back.
  • Homura comments in Episode 4 that she has witnessed "countless" magical girls die. In Episode 10, we see her witness (or cause herself) at most 9 deaths (the exact number depends on whether to count becoming a witch as dying, or whether to count killing the witch form). Even though some events may have happened off-camera, it is still too low number to consider it "too many to count". This suggests that there were indeed more loops than seen in the episode.

Miscellaneous

What led to the conclusion that the anime took place in March 2011
  • The calendar in Homura's room shows that she's getting discharged from the hospital on the 16th and returns to school on the 25th. From the format of the calendar, the 25th is apparently a Friday. The only month in 2011 that has 31 days and the 25th falling on a Friday is March. This means that the anime is set during the same time the final episode were supposed to air.
    • More information about the subject here
    • There are a few problems with this theory. First, there is no indication that this occurs in 2011. The same pattern of days can fall in a month for a different year. Furthermore, the technology shown in the classroom is more advanced than in 2011 Japan. Shinbo in an interview also describes it as "in the near future, or a distant future." Second, Japan's school year starts in April, possibly as early as the 1st though typically on April 5th, not late March. The green foliage and cherry blossoms, makes it clear it's the spring term and thus the 31 day month would be March or May. Furthermore, Homura is not transferring in on the first day. Based on Madoka's conversation in episode 1 with her mother about her teacher and Hitomi, makes it sound like it is already well into the spring term. Third, physical evidence, such as Madoka's father harvesting full-grown cherry tomatoes in ep. 1. With Japan's climate, tomato plants would be harvested in end of May, not March, in an outdoor garden. Thus, the events most likely occur starting in May in some future year.
  • Homura's only way to get guns and weapons is by stealing them, it is assumed that she must have stolen them from a group of criminals.
    • This is not true as she's also seen stealing from the military.
  • Although it is shown that Homura can time travel, the limitations are not clear. She is always shown returning to the hospital only after something happens to Madoka, whether it be her dying or becoming a witch. This does not indicate whether or not Homura can continue after Madoka dies or if she can start over in the middle of one timeline.
    • In addition, it is unclear whether Homura retains all of her physical improvements between timelines. We see obvious contrasts between episode 1 and 10 where Homura is certainly stronger in timeline 5. However, this could be due to Homura retraining her weak body every time she starts again in the hospital and not be a result of accumulated strength.
      • As she was able to use magic to heal her eyes, it is quite possible she did the same with her body.
  • In Timeline 3, the Grief Seed Madoka uses to heal Homura may be Sayaka's Grief Seed. She might have obtained it after defeating Oktavia at the station. Madoka might have kept the Grief Seed until the end to remember Sayaka.
    • The Grief Seed from Episode 10 looks different from that of Episode 8. However, this can be explained if the Grief Seed from Episode 8 is an immature form. Both Sayaka and Madoka's Grief Seed does not show dark parts as other Witches' Grief Seeds (except Charlotte's Seed which was partially dark since Charlotte had revived recently).
  • Homura's shield can bend space and time; it is also useful for storing her arsenal of weapons. It is also a symbol of her will to protect Madoka.
    • Inside Homura's shield there are mechanisms like gears, springs, and a escapement wheel; these are parts typically found in mechanical clocks.
    • Everytime Homura uses her power her shield produces a small drop of red material. Its composition and function are unknown but it may have something to do with Homura's ability to surpass entropy to stop or travel back in time.
    • It is suspected that the red material is actually sand from her timer and it contains one month worth of time, once the sand runs out she cannot use her time stopping powers. To refill the timer Homura must reset her timer like an hourglass and travel back to one month to the period when she was back at the hospital.
  • This time, the only change spotted in the opening animation was the addition of Homura and Kyoko to the group shot. The opening animation has also been used as the ending sequence. (this episode has no proper opening)
  • The building from which Homura steals weapons in Timeline 3 has a banner reading 「射太興業」. 興業 means "industrial enterprise", and 射太 can be read as "Shafuto", the Japanese pronounciation of "Shaft".
  • According to a Chinese fan who blogged [1] about meeting Ume Aoki [2], Episode 10 was Ume Aoki's favorite episode, that she cried over many times watching it.

Speculation

About Walpurgis Night and magic in general

The theories below have been proven right.
At least one element from the franchise is rendering them valid.
  • According to Kyubey, Madoka as a Witch has the power to destroy the world but it is of no concern to him as long as they meet their quota.
    • It is speculated that because of the nature of Madoka's wish in Timeline 4, that wish gave her the power to not only destroy the Witch during Walpurgis Night with just one shot but that same power will destroy the world once she becomes a Witch herself. For that to happen Madoka will have to make the same wish on Walpurgis Night in Timeline 5.
  • Walpurgis Night could be the witch of a magical girl who defeated the previous most powerful witch. As QB mentioned in Episode 10, the only choice left for a magic girl after defeating the most powerful witch "is to become a (even more powerful) witch herself".


The theories below have not been proven yet.
Please keep in mind that they are fanmade theories, and not official material.
  • Since Walpurgis Night didn't drop a Grief Seed in Timeline 3, it is possible that Walpurgis Night could be a familar of an even more powerful witch. However, this would conflict with QB's statement of Walpurgis Night being the most powerful witch.


The theories below have been proven wrong.
They are only kept here for the sake of completeness.
  • It was speculated that given the nature of Walpurgis Night and the presence of gears, along with the "falling" figure of the witch, Walpurgis Night could be the witch form of Homura. However, since Puella Magi Madoka Magica Portable's release, it has been confirmed that Walpurgis is not Homura's witch form. Homura's official witch is named Homulilly.
  • It was also speculated that Walpurgis Night could be Homura's witch form from the future.

About the timelines and time travel

The theories below have been proven right.
At least one element from the franchise is rendering them valid.
  • Madoka may be getting stronger on each timeline for unknown reasons.
    • Timeline 1: Madoka triumphs on Walpurgis night, possibly only after Mami has already weakened the witch. Madoka somehow dies from her wounds from the battle. This seems to be the weakest of all the Madokas.
    • Timeline 2: Madoka is victorious on Walpurgis night and does not die from her battle injuries. However, she immediately transforms into a witch afterwards. We do not know if Madoka as a witch is especially strong or not.
      • This one can be misleading, we must not forget that in this timeline she has the assistance of Homura and possibly Mami, which is why Madoka didnt die.
    • Timeline 3: Madoka wins with only the assistance of Homura. They would be capable of surviving if it were not for the blackening of their Soul Gems. Madoka clings to her humanity longer compared to her last incarnation.
      • Why Madoka lasted longer could be a result of her unwillingness to transform as she is now aware of what will happen next. The previous Madoka version was probably scared and confused as to what was happening to her so it is possible she didn't fight back the transformation. Also, she may have more energy left because of Homura's increased power and experience.
    • Timeline 4: Madoka is able to stop Walpurgis night in just one hit. Obviously stronger compared to the timeline 1 version. Kyubbey mentions how strong Madoka had become, surpassing his expectations. Her witch form has the power to destroy the whole planet.
      • It is stated previously that the strength and power of a Puella Magi is reflected by the nature of their wish, since Madoka witnessed the power of the witch in Walpurgis Night, she could have wished for the power to defeat her thus receiving equal or greater power than the witch.
        • Because Madoka has always stated how Puella Magi should protect everyone, it is possible her wish was simply to protect everyone and thus the corresponding witch curse would be to kill everyone.
    • Timeline 5: Kyubey mentions that Madoka could become a god or godlike if she wished, although this may simply be him egging her on to become a magical girl.
    • This is confirmed by Kyubey later on


The theories below have been proven wrong.
They are only kept here for the sake of completeness.
  • It was speculated in Episode 9 that if Kyubey's people have the technology to travel back in time, they could fix the entropy problem by reversing it.
    • However, in Episode 10, we learn that Kyubey can only grant the ability to travel back in time. He is only part of the process to create it, so they do not posses the ability itself. The power of time travel rests only within Homura because of her wish.


The theories below have not been proven yet.
Please keep in mind that they are fanmade theories, and not official material.
File:Super dimentional girl homu homu.png
This comic explains why telling anyone the truth is a bad idea.
  • It seems like in every timeline the last ones left to fight Walpurgis Night are Homura and Madoka.
    • It is assumed that Mami, Kyoko, and Sayaka always die in every timeline.
      • However, some evidence suggests that Kyoko's and Sayaka's absence on Walpurgis Night in the other timelines could be explained by Kyoko never arriving in town (or joining forces) or Sayaka never making her wish.
        • Under this assumption we are lead to believe that Mami dies in every timeline.
  • It is possible that an imprint or a residue of past timelines are still within Madoka's memory. One example is the dream that Madoka had in Episode 1 and that strange image static in Episode 8.
  • Homura's reason to go back in time seems to change in each timeline, even though it's possible that only her methods of trying to save Madoka change and her final goal is still the same:
    • Original Timeline: Goes back to help Madoka and stop her from dying.
    • Timeline 2: Homura witnesses the truth and sees Madoka die and become a witch. Homura decides to go back and warn the other girls about the truth.
    • Timeline 3: Homura seems to resign to her fate, she wants to die alongside with Madoka and become witches together, she does not mind if they bring more destruction. However, Madoka saves her life and asks her to stop her from making the stupid mistake of becoming a Puella Magi/Witch, she also tells her that there are still good things left in the world so she refuses to become a Witch and bring more destruction.
    • Timeline 4: Homura realizes that Madoka has the power to destroy the world if left alone. Her mission is to fulfill Madoka's previous request and stop her from becoming a Puella Magi/Witch that will lead to the destruction of the Earth (something that Madoka refused to become part of in Timeline 3).
    • While there is no hard proof going against that theory, note that Homura never said anything about changing her whereabouts



Miscellaneous

The theories below have been proven right.
At least one element from the franchise is rendering them valid.
  • Fans have complained that they think Madoka is a weak character and doesn't have a lot of character development, regardless of their criticism, arguably one of the reasons can be Homura. Homura's mission to stop Madoka from becoming a Mahou Shoujo has also halted some of her character development. In each separate timeline we see a different side of Madoka: she can be strong, resilient, and self-sacrificing when she is a Mahou Shoujo. The character trait that remains constant in every timeline compared to the current one is her kindness and trust, in which she's willing to do what she can to help those in need.


The theories below have not been proven yet.
Please keep in mind that they are fanmade theories, and not official material.
  • It is possible that the reason Kyubey made Homura a Puella Magi in timeline 1 was to meet his energy quota. The Madoka version of that timeline died before she could become a witch.
  • The new version of Episode 10 that was broadcast at Nico Nico shows a tree in Timeline 4. Some speculate that this tree could somehow be related to the Yggdrasil Tree (world tree) of Norse Mythology.

Homura's Wish

Observers have tried to interpret the reasoning behind Homura's wish. At first glance it seems that it would had been easier to just wish Madoka back to life. Instead, Homura decides the harder route to change her meeting with Madoka, try to save her life, and then stop Walpurgis Night from destroying the city. Dismissing the fact that Kyubey had stated that bringing the dead back is "impossible", as Homura was not aware of this fact, her wish seems unusual unless you try analyze her reasoning, or the author's intentions.

There are two possibilities speculated behind Homura's wish:

  1. Homura wanted to save Madoka and the city, she did not want Madoka's sacrifice to be in vain.
  2. Homura was selfishly wishing to redo her relationship with Madoka so she could fight alongside with her, save Madoka's life, and protect the town from Walpurgis Night.
  • Perhaps Homura wanted more than just being protected by her friend; perhaps deep down she wanted to return the favor by protecting Madoka.

Other possibility tied with the author's intentions.

  1. Homura's wish would tie with the ending of the story as plotted by the author, binding both Madoka and Homura together eternally. Her wish to "meet Madoka again" instead of bringing Madoka back to life would mean that she would always be able to "meet" Madoka even if the world resets itself without Madoka's physical presence (in the current timeline). It would also explain why Homura remembers Madoka while everyone else (Mami, Kyoko, and her family) doesn't. Also, since Madoka ultimately turns into an omnipresence, Homura's 2nd part of the wish would also fit perfectly with the new "Madoka." Although Madoka can no longer be seen or felt, Homura is still the one trying to protect Madoka's wish. This can be confirmed when Homura says that although the world isn't worth saving, it was the place that Madoka wanted to protect, so she would continue to fight. She fights to protect Madoka's "wish" in the current timeline.
  • It's speculated that Sayaka's hostility toward Homura can be interpreted in two ways:
  1. Homura was threatening Sayaka's belief that they were girls of justice by revealing the dark side of the Puella Magi system with no proof
    • In the spin-ff Oriko Magica where Sayaka doesnt find out about Magical Girls, she is more friendly towards Homura, despite the latter being her stoic self in latter timelines, which adds credence to the theory
  2. Sayaka was getting jealous that Homura (a new comer) was getting too close with Madoka, threatening Sayaka's role as friend, protector, and supporter.
This could also be interpreted as Sayaka being suspicious of Homura's intention. One explanation could be that perhaps Sayaka's state of mind is becoming unstable with the build up of despair and she starting to become paranoid and suspicious of anyone going against her.

Trivia

  • The Megami Magazine article indicates that Episode 10 was made only after the trimming of the screenplay. If possible Shinbo would like to make it in its complete form. But to make it in complete form, it will need around 45 minutes so perhaps it is not possible.
    • Unless it is done as an OVA or movie format, this had lead to some speculation in 2chan.

Images

Screenshots

Witches

The ascension of despair

The world after Walpurgis Night

Others

Difference between broadcasts/episodes

Others

Fanart

This section contains fanart images

Everything in the following fan gallery is created, or the comments accompanying them are created, for entertainment value and should not be confused with actual canon events of the Puella Magi franchise.

Miscellaneous

References and crossovers

See also

External links

Episodes
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Episode 9 I'll Never Allow That Madoka Magica Episode 10: I Won't Depend on Anyone Anymore I Won't Depend on Anyone Anymore Episode 11 The Only Signpost Remaining