What is that one thing I wish for? It is a very important question because it will come true.
Madoka is in a very interesting place because that this she wishes for is actually the cost of the wish. The wish is an exchange for power. It is implicit that there is a responsibility that comes with that power. It is explicit that there is danger that comes with that power.
It is neither explicit nor implicit that there is an addiction that comes with that power. There is nothing yet that clearly says that the power corrupts. Perhaps Madoka Magica has witches for that role. Witches are corrupted and perhaps destructive if not malicious as a result. But the Puella Magi – they hunt witches to serve and protect it would seem, but also for the power they win. Why else the competition between them?
But let the speculation about these things cease for now. The question remains: what does Madoka wish for? I am less interested in what she actually does wish for in this post. I’m placing her as a wish-fulfillment character: an improbably powerful (in raw potential) Puella Magi despite basically being bland/k in every other way.
Episode 04 gives us an example. Sayaka Miki made her choice, and became a Puella Magi. It isn’t directly stated, but we see the boy she cares about beholding a miracle: his injury is healed (and we can assume he’ll be able to play music again). In the previous episode, Mami warns them/her that when wishing for the happiness of another person they/she should be clear about what is being wished for. Is it just the happiness of the other, or that of receiving the thanks, and perhaps love from the other.
I can’t see how this will end well for Sayaka.
I doubt that this show will break the tradition of magical wishes not powerful enough to change the will of another human being (see Disney’s Aladdin), so Sayaka can’t use the wish to make Kyosuke love her (or even guarantee that he will be happy or appreciative of the miracle). So, it will really be a test of Sayaka’s love. Is the wish truly freely given?
It will be interesting to me what the shape of the tragedy will be. I anticipated something tragic, but I suppose way too extreme: Madoka wishes for Mami to come back to life, but she comes back as a witch, and Madoka’s first kill would have to be Mami. Maybe this is what I wish for this show (which is perhaps why I shouldn’t be writing anime).
Now, the question really is: what would we wish for? What do I wish for in her place (but with a context all my own)?
Money on tap.
I’m going to take a page out of Fractale and create a lifelong daily dole of money for me for the rest of my life. It will never be enough for me to start buying yachts and sports cars, nor bankroll the production of anime I want to watch. It will however, put the concern for subsistence to rest. To ask for more is to poison my own happiness.
It will however, give me a great measure of joy indirectly. My wife can now choose to work for fulfilling but financially unsound jobs, like non-profits and some branches of government. She can’t do that yet because we have to pay for our household, put funds away for our daughter’s schooling, and the like.
I can then devote myself to time-risky ventures that make little economic sense, like publishing OEL manga, and other startups that banks won’t dare finance; and/or I and my partners are unwilling to mortgage our assets for.
If I get this wish, then indeed I’m willing to use what amounts to The King of Braves Gao Gai Gar’s Dividing Driver, or Star Driver’s Zero Time, so my very violent battles against what forces of evil I hunt down will never hurt the innocent. What would you wish for?