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Strange Dawn is a seemingly harmless series, that soon proves its true nature as a nightmare fuel rife, fairly adult work.
Eri and Yuko are high school girls summoned into another world by Queen Aria. Her kingdom, Guriania, is at war with neighboring Barujitan, and she believes the two girls are witches who can use their mighty powers to end the conflict. But they don't have any powers, don't like each other, and don't want to work together-except that it seems like it's the only way they can get back to their own world.
The series has predictably cute character designs, including a couple of childlike fantasy creatures that at least make a change from the usual magical animal sidekicks. But what sets Strange Dawn apart is the uses to which it puts its designs-the childish-seeming characters belie a plotline that is unafraid to jump feet-first into war, bloodshed, and death.
As with El Hazard, Junichi Sato's story concentrates on the mundane annoyances that might beset human beings in a fantasy world-regardless of the world that needs saving, the girls are more worried about finding a working toilet and how far they can stretch their limited laundry resources.
Cunningly, the series also refuses point-blank to deal with the sort of questions that another series, such as Escaflowne, would have answered in the very first episode. We don't find out why the girls are so antagonistic toward each other, nor anything about their life in our own world-the lack of an introduction scene misleading the viewers and keeping them guessing throughout, and all for the better.
One of the girls sent to the land of Guriania, Yuko is talkative and blunt, and is prone to hurting the feelings of others. Unlike Eri, she doesn't care about the inhabitants of the land, and is only interested in getting out as fast as possible. She's not very friendly to most people, but hates Eri especially, due to Eri's timid nature.
Yuko's polar opposite, and the other girl sent to the land of Guriania. Eri is naturally shy, and hardly says what she thinks, for fear of hurting the feelings of others. However, she takes an active concern with the welfare of Guriania's inhabitants, and does her best to try and help them out.