Zero No Tsukaima
Zero No Tsukaima (The Familiar of Zero) started out as a light novel, which is still getting releases (haven't read it yet).
They made an anime out of it, season 1 was titled Zero No Tsukaima, season 2 is titled Zero No Tsukaima: Futatsuki No Kishi and is simply the second season of the same series, and season 3 has been announced to air in 2008, most likely from july to september like the first two seasons (which are 13 and 12 episodes each).
There is also a manga adaptation, which is currently seven chapters long I believe.
Here's a little overview of the plot. The story starts out in a magic academy in a fictional country where students are training to become mages. There are four basic elements in magic, known as earth, fire, wind, and water, and there is a fifth lost element known as void which nobody can use anymore. Mages start out specialized in one element, and are judged based on how many elements they can use, a line mage can use two, a triangle mage can use three, and a square mage can use all four.
The female lead is known as Louise the Zero, because she cannot use any of the four basic elements, and has a zero percent success rate when trying to cast, which usually results in explosive backfires. The story begins with her starting her second year as a student, and all second years must go through a ritual to summon a familiar as a companion creature (can be anything from cats to dragons). When Louise tries to summon a familiar, of course a huge explosion happens, and instead of an animal, out pops a boy named Saito, the male lead. Saito is a Japanese boy from the modern world, who was walking down the street when he saw a portal appear out of nowhere, and walked into it, ending up in Louise's world. She then of course has to kiss him on the lips to seal the familiar contract (and unlike Negima, you can only do one familiar pactio). Saito of course has to deal with being thrown into this strange world, with this crazy girl as his master, while trying to find clues as to how to get back to his own world while at the same time getting attached to Louise and this new world.
The story touches many different subjects, the most prominent being a romantic comedy style where different girls are throwing themselves at Saito, and Louise gets jealous. There is also a good deal of drama for what would appear as a more comedic show, dealing with romance (duh), social class (mages are almost all nobles, while commoners are called plebians), honor (nobles hold honor above all else, even love and their own life), politics (one of the main characters is a young princess who has to deal with disputes with another country), and war. There's still a good deal of gags, ecchi, and everything you'd expect from a romantic comedy anime, and somehow it is all balanced together in a way I would say works out amazingly. And I highly recommend this anime. The only complaints I have about it are the short lengths of the seasons which make me wait longer for more episodes, and the fact that it got really sad at a couple points (but that's really a good thing). Others have complained about differences between the show and the light novel, which seems to stem from the short season lengths, but I make it a point to watch animes first before going to the manga/light novel for just that reason, so I wasn't effected by it.
P.S. Here's a link to the wiki project that is working on translating the light novel: Clicky
The rest of this thread will be for discussing the show and will likely contain spoilers so continue at your own risk.
the manga is just as bad as the Shakugan No Shana manga, the light novels are alot better
i love this anime. i finished the two seasons in 2days. i cant wait for the third on july. does anyone know any other anime thats exactly like this? or close enough?