Pleiades Saints

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From left to right, Nico, Mirai, Saki and Satomi

The Pleiades Saints is a team of Puellae Magi featured in Puella Magi Kazumi Magica: The Innocent Malice. Together, they fight witches in Asunaro city.

Their name is taken from the Pleiades star cluster, whose stars are named after the Pleiades of Greek mythology (a.k.a the Seven Sisters).

Members

The Pleiades Saints' current roster is composed of:

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Kazumi (かずみ)
A girl with amnesia who can't remember anything except her name. Despite this, she keeps an innocent, cheerful and friendly personality. She is also a glutton for delicious foods. Eventually she was found by her roommates and partners, Kaoru and Umika. Her wish is currently unknown because she never told it to her friends before she lost her memories.
She is the team's sharpshooter, maintaining some distance from the opponent and firing powerful magic beams when the opportunity arises.


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Kaoru (カオル)
An athletic soccer player living with Umika and Kazumi. A bright older sister figure who takes good care of things. She wished for a strong, healthy body that would let her play soccer.
She fights by dealing powerful kicks and ball strikes, stunning, distracting and wearing down the opponent.


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Umika Misaki (御崎 海香)
A popular novelist who bought the trio's house with her earnings. Her reliable, mature aura changes completely when there's a deadline looming. She is close to Kaoru and thinks of Kazumi as a little sister. She wished for the chance to meet an editor who would publish her stories.
In battle, she uses her magical book to read the opponent's mind in order to figure out it's weakness and to improve the team's chances of success.


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Saki Asami (浅海 サキ)
A mature and intelligent girl, she effectively acts as the Pleiades' leader. Cool and collected, she is apt at commanding the other girls both in battle and outside of it. She also cares not only for their safety, but for their morale.
In battle, she wields an electric rod, and can summon lightning at will from it. When transformed, her glasses become a single monocle and goes commando.


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Mirai Wakaba (若葉 みらい)
An impulsive girl with long, puffy hair. She is hotheaded and is not afraid to express her thoughts as loud as possible, and occasionally vents out her frustration on Kazumi by smacking her (especially when Kazumi begins doubting herself). She also thinks of herself highly, sometimes even calling herself "Mirai-sama". But deep down she is a caring girl.
Her individual abilities in battle are so far unknown.


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Satomi Usagi (宇佐木 里美)
A polite girl who loves animals, and wants to become a veterinarian when she grows up. Her wish was to gain the ability to talk to animals, which she uses to gather information.
Her individual abilities in battle are so far unknown. When transformed, her suit gives her a feline appearance, complete with cat ears, paws, and even a long tail. She also wields a cat shaped staff.


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Nico Kanna (神流 ニコ)
A tech expert and arguably the most intelligent of the group. She uses several pieces of high tech equipment, most notably a smartphone with an app that can read a witch's residual power wavelength and calibrate the girl's Soul Gems to track it more accurately. She is also able to quickly analyze situations, and notice subtle details the others don't. She is constantly seen with the same uninterested look on her face, which barely changes even when pierced with an arrow.
While transformed, she dons an aviator suit, complete with goggles, a harness and a parachute backpack. In accordance with her tech expertise, she is able to summon CD-like disks, which are likely throwable weapons with cutting properties.

History

Fili Del Toano - A quick joint attack
Episodio Incrocio, their joint bind spell.

Though Kazumi, Kaoru and Umika were present since the start, the Pleiades were only introduced in chapter 3. After a witch traps Kaoru and Umika inside of itself and takes off, four mysterious girl come to Kazumi's help. They introduce themselves as the Pleiades Saints, a seven-girl witch-hunting team of which Kazumi and her abducted friends are also a part of. Together, they search for Kaoru and Umika across town. While they search, the mysterious girl from previous chapters {spoiler|, Yuuri,}} attacks Kazumi, having disguised herself as Satomi to separate her from the rest of the team. Overwhelmed, Kazumi is on the verge of defeat, but her four companions intervene. Kazumi is then held at gunpoint, causing them to hesitate, but she screams out to them to attack anyway. They do so, and fire a joint attack at the mysterious girl: Fili Del Toano. It causes a large explosion, but the magical girl gets away. Kazumi is only lightly wounded.

They reunite at Umika's house for a strategy meeting. While analyzing the situation, Saki, their presumed leader, makes a breakthrough. She discovers the symbol the witch left across town was also on the back of a book, leading her to conclude the witch has possessed a bookmobile. After filling up on Kazumi's delicious food, they head out to the last stop on the bookmobile schedule to intercept it. They successfully do so, and, leaving Kazumi on the outside to strike at command, rescue Kaoru and Umika just in time. Together, the six of them bind the witch with Episodio Incrocio. However, Nico's GPS/com unit breaks, leaving them unable to give Kazumi the needed signal. Umika, thinking quickly, commands them to use candy flutes given to them by Kazumi. The sound reaches her, and the witch is destroyed by Limiti Esterni.

While they reunite and celebrate their victory, they are attacked by the mysterious Puella Magi from earlier, Yuuri. She kidnaps Kazumi, and orders them to go to the Asunaro Dome at midnight if they want Kazumi back. While waiting for the deadline, they speculate on Yuuri's motivations. At the right time, they head to the dome, but due to a force barrier they can do nothing but watch as Yuuri enacts her plane. Yuuri states her objective is to seek revenge on them. She interprets the Pleiades' failure to recognize her as having been "just that insignificant" to the girls. She then removes her hat, causing a shocked Umika to recognize her.

Teamwork

Given that none of the Saints appear to be overwhelmingly powerful, their strength comes from a number of joint tactics and attacks they have developed to make their numeric advantage as effective as possible.

Their main strategy appear to be to take advantage of Kazumi's powerful magic beams. The six remaining girls engage the enemy, wearing it down and immobilizing it by casting a joint sealing spell, Episodio Incrocio (English: Crossover Episode). This makes it a sitting duck for Kazumi to finish off.

That is not their only joint attack. For situations that require a quick strike, Fili Del Toano is an option. It is a powerful attack that creates a large explosion on the target, aimed by laser beams fired from the girl's staffs.

Outside of battle, they coordinate their search patterns to improve their chances of finding a witch. Along with Nico's app, this allows them to cover a wide area in just a few hours.

Trivia

  • "Pleiades Saints" is a pun: "Pleiades Saints" and the Pleiades Star Cluster are pronounced the same way in Japanese and, when written, differ by only one character. Being named after a star cluster also produces another Astronomy reference.
  • They seem to have all contracted with Juubey, who cleans their Soul Gems.
  • Satomi's surname is meaningful, given her love for animals. Usagi means rabbit.
  • Twin cat-like fangs can be seen when Satomi fully opens her mouth. Together with her cat-like appearance when transformed, and her "Meow" shouts in battle, she can be seen as the (mandatory) cat girl in the Madoka universe.
  • When transformed, Saki sports a monocle, a military-style outfit, a beret and a rod, giving her the appearance of a high ranking military officer. It is quite suitable to her position within the group.
  • In contrast with her tough appearance, Saki seems to enjoy reading love stories. In her backpack, titles such as "My First Love Was The Milky Way" and "Lemon Kiss Stories" can be seen.

Speculation

This section may contain major spoilers for the anime!

Please refrain from reading if you haven't watched Episode 9 yet.
  • Given Nico's use of high tech and the ability to summon CD-like disks, it is peculated she made a wish concerning technology, for example to become a great programmer.
  • Yuuri, the mysterious girl who attacks them multiple times, holds a grudge against them from their shared past, though the girls appear to have no recollection of it until Umika recognizes her face. This past is apparently a very troubled one.
  • Despite being named after the Seven Sisters of Greek mythology, Sterope, Merope, Electra, Maia, Taygeta, Celaeno, and Alcyone are only part of the nine brightest stars in the cluster. The other two stars are named after their parents, Atlas and Pleione. Given that the current roster of the Saints is composed of seven members, it is speculated that two of them are missing. Since Nico states they are named after the seven sisters, it leaves those two members as the "parents", or the most important (or senior) members of the team.
    It is likely those two are Yuuri, who has a past connection to the group, and the mysterious girl in Yuuri's flashbacks, who seemed to be a friend of hers.
  • In the anime, magical girls worked alone or in small groups because the Grief Seeds they needed to clean their Soul Gems were a limited resource. Magical girls could easily clash over territory and were just as likely to compete than cooperate. When the Pleiades Saints were revealed to be a seven-member magical girl team, a number of readers wondered how that could be possible in this context. It was considered unlikely that there were enough witches in Asunaro City to support seven magical girls. Chapter 4 explained that Juubey, the fairy they contracted with, can clean their Soul Gems, meaning they don't need to compete for Grief Seeds.
    • What was left unexplained was is why this was done. Kyubey has never demonstrated the ability to clean Soul Gems in the anime. In fact, he actively seeked to have the girls corrupt their Soul Gems and turn into witches. One probable explanation is that from what we've seen, the Pleiades had fairly minior wishes and were therefore weaker magical girls. Being weak magical girls, they wouldn't become powerful witches, and thus they wouldn't produce a lot of energy when they transformed. It is then more efficient for Juubey to let them hunt Grief Seeds for him than to try and convert them into witches.
      In purely mathematical terms, a team of weak Puella Magi capturing a more powerful witch than themselves using team tactics is more efficient when it comes to energy output.

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