Mio Sakamoto is the deuteragonist of the Strike Witches anime series. She is a Squadron leader and the second-in-command of the 501st Joint Fighter Wing.
She is voiced by Chiba Saeko and Seto Saori in the Japanese version of he anime, and by Kira Vincent-Davis in the English version of the anime.
A first-class veteran Witch who won great renown in the preliminary encounters with the Neuroi, such as the Fuso Sea Incident in 1937. In the beginning of her career, Mio was under the guidance of Kitagou Fumika and had a rivalry with Wakamoto Tetsuko. She was one of the first test pilots of the Striker Units. There was also a period when she trained in Romagna. Her teacher at the time, Anna Ferrara, worked her quite hard - causing the then young Fuso girl to resent the older woman to the point of writing insults at her bed. Even now, there are some signs that Mio is conscious of Anna as someone hard to deal with.
Mio was deployed to Britannia since before the Neroi's full-scale invasion, where she engaged in the development of the Type 0 Striker Unit. It was around this time that she became close acquaintances with Dr. Miyafuji, who spent all his time doing research on Europe. Because she has been living in Europe for a long time, she employs a car with a right hand drive specification.
Mio remained in Europe even after the beginning of the invasion, shouldering part of Europe's defense as a member of the Fuso Imperial Navy European Dispatch Fleet Libau Flying Corps. During this time, Mio used to travel around long distances often. It was in one of such occasions that she first met Wing Commander Wilcke by chance while stopping at a Karlsland Army's base for supplies. She was also acquaintances with Air Commodore Galland (then a Flight Lieutenant), who fought in many battles across Europe.
Following the collapse of Karlsland, Mio continued to defend Libau until the evacuation of the population was over. However, an injury sustained at that occasion forced her to temporarily return to Fuso. She had a good relationship with her superior at the time, Pilot Officer Takei (currently a Flight Lieutenant), and continued to maintain contact with her as a friend even after the evacuation of Libau. She was also friends with Nishizawa Yoshiko.
Originally, Mio's rank at her home unit in Fuso was Flight Lieutenant, but she was later promoted to Squadron Leader thanks to her achievements in the 501st Joint Fighter Wing. When talking about that, she once commented how her "actual rank finally became Squadron Leader". After the disband of the 501st JFW due the liberation of Gallia, she worked as a temporary instructor in a Navy Witches training academy as a form of recreation. However, she retired three months later and afterwards worked hard at training in order to fight with a weakened magic power.
Around that time, Mio requested a reunion with her comrade in arms from the Fuso Sea Incident, Kuroe Ayaka, for the first time in 7 years and showed results in the secret sword technique "Unyou" during the ensuing mock battle. Later, this would become a foothold for the acquisition of the "Reppuzan". Later, she took an extended leave and secluded herself in a mountain to forge a Fuso sword infused magic power - Reppumaru - in order to subjugate the weakening of her magic shield.
At the final battle against the Neuroi Super-Hive in Venezia, Mio attempted to release a "Reppuzan" in order to save Flying Officer Clostermann and Flight Sergeant Bishop, who had been surrounded by a large number of Neuroi. However, by that point her magic power had already dried up completely, so not only she was unable to inflict a single damage, but the Reppumaru was sent flying away until it pierced the deck of the Yamato. Nevertheless, she still found a way to remain useful, using her remaining magic power to charge the magic dynamo of the Yamato. The Neuroi-fied ship then used its main cannon to destroy the Super-Hive's outer shell. However, the core itself was not destroyed, but instead absorbed both the Yamato and Mio, becoming capable of generating magic shields through the Witch's power.
Mio was ultimately saved by the sacrifice of Sergeant Miyafuji, who used up all her magic power to perform a Shin Reppuzan and destroy the giant core.
She puts the whole team together with a fatherly atmosphere, playing an active role in battle as a superior front-line commander. She takes pride in having never lost a wingman.
Broad-minded and cheerful, she has a personality that is somewhat candidly mannish and does fuss over the minor details of daily life. Mio is faithful to moral obligations and humane feelings, even sentimental in a sense. Her favorite motto is "simplicity and fortitude". Hot-blooded, at a glance she seems simply impulsive, but in battle she has both a cool and elaborate thinking and audacious behavior. No matter what kind of dilemma, she always seeks a solution without ever giving up. She is actually easily moved to tears, but never cries in front of others. The occasion when she wailed before Wing Commander Wilcke prior to the decisive battle out of frustration and hopelessness from her magic power drying up was an exception.
Mio is adored by many Witches due of her personality and military service, but it seems that she herself is unaware of that. Although is frequently approached by Flying Officer Clostermann from the same team, she believes that the girl's feelings are just those of a diligent subordinate towards its superior and doesn't notice any special favor at all. Wing Commander Wilcke, who had a long fellowship with Mio from since before the unit's formation, also seems to hold a favor towards her that exceeds mere friendship. From Private Hijikata Keisuke (currently a Warrant Officer), her exclusive underling and chauffeur, Mio receives an absolute respect that borders worship.
Mio is knowledgeable about the Way of Tea, but doesn't fuss about formal etiquette. She has a fondness for hot springs and was the on who had the idea of constructing a Fuso-style bathhouse at the 501st's base. In the only time Mio was shown using a shower, she did so because she didn't want people to see her crying. As seen in Tenkū no Otome-tachi, she also appears to be afraid of snakes, having fainted upon facing one while stranded on an island.
Mio has no likes and dislikes regarding food and, so long it is eatable, she will eat anything without fail. On the other hand, she is not very good at cooking herself due having enrolled in the military since an early age. One of her troubles is the fact that, even though she can prepare a fish, her onigiri turn out round no matter how she tries to make them. Also by piling up training upon training, she mastered the "Higi - Tamagogiri" that slices an egg in a horizontal line with a Fuso sword.
Mio is based on Japanese flying ace Sakai Saburo.
Mio's inherent magic is called Magic Eye. Classified in the perception-lineage, her right eye can discern things in a far off distant place with super eyesight and even see through a domain that human eyesight normally cannot perceive. However, the limit is range that her field of vision reaches and cannot see past obstacles such as night-time, deep clouds or structures. Also, it is difficult to control and remains permanently active, requiring the use of her eye-patch to cover it when not in use. In combat, this ability is employed for sighting a Neuroi from long-distances and confirming the position of the core in its interior. Incidentally, when Mio is low on magic power - be due injury or simple degradation caused by age - her vision lose its special functions and becomes a normal eye.
With her Striker Unit's mobility and excellent skill, Mio can "see through" a beam and evade it. By the combination of the favorite sword that she herself tempered (Reppumaru) and excellent sword skills, a new killing-technique - Reppuzan - was acquired. Later, she became unable to use a magic shield, but acquired a new defensive method by cutting up a Neuroi's beam with the Reppumaru.
Mio excels at the leadership to amass subordinates and is proficient in training not only subordinates but also superiors, guiding their abilities. A training demon, Mio is strict with herself and others, but that is because she is more afraid than anyone else of losing a subordinate. She also has a training-mania side, keeping a pile of questionable training equipment such as kendo armors, bokutou, shinai, bows and arrows, naginata, sandboxes and iron balls in the hangar. Her dream is to rear an excellent subordinate who she can entrust things afterwards. She feels especially responsible for the rearing of Sergeant Miyafuji, the orphan of Dr. Miyafuji, who she is indebted to.