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REVIEW: xxxHolic DVD Box Set (Hyb) DVD


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Reibooi



Joined: 03 Mar 2008
Posts: 394
PostPosted: Sat Aug 15, 2009 11:27 pm Reply with quote
I HIGHLY disagree that Todd Haberkorn's Watanuki isn't good.

I had read at least the first 10 volumes of xxxHolic before I saw the anime and happened to watch the English dub first and I have to say that Haberkorn sounded almost exactly as I pictured Watanuki in my head.

The parts where he needed to be quiet and serious he was but the vast majority of the time Watanuki is being played for laughs and he excels at this. That's not to say he doesn't deliver in scenes like with the real fortune teller or with the little girl under the hydrangeas
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CCSYueh



Joined: 03 Jul 2004
Posts: 2707
Location: San Diego, CA
PostPosted: Sat Aug 15, 2009 11:45 pm Reply with quote
As I am trying to decide if I need this title during this current TRSI Funimation sale or wait for a Viridian edition (as they're releasing on Tsubasa), this does make me lean toward waiting. I've been noticing a certain hit & miss on Funi dubs. Some they bother to give us full credits (including Japanese cast) & seem to stick closer to the original whole others they re-name characters & things.
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HJSoulma



Joined: 06 May 2009
Posts: 62
PostPosted: Sun Aug 16, 2009 12:18 am Reply with quote
I think parts of this review are really spot on, but there are other parts I just can't agree with. Firstly, I'm siding with Reibooi, I love Todd Haberkorn's Watanuki. I had also read up to at least volume 9 or 10 before starting the anime, and after listening to the Japanese and English tracks for the first episode, I decided to watch the dub because I thought English Watanuki was so spot on. (In contrast, I was initially disappointed with Colleen Clinkenbeard's (spelling...?) Yuko, though I grew used to it by the second DVD.) Listen to both languages for yourself; one of them is bound to appeal to you.

I agree, however, that there are pretty major lulls in some of the episodes-- a couple of them are really needlessly talky and drawn out, but I found that for each "get-on-with-it" episode there was a "good-job-adapting-the-source-material" episode.

As for the animation, it definitely takes some getting used to. If noodles made porn, xxxHolic is what it would look like. They're so wiggly. So wiggly.
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Shay Guy



Joined: 03 Jul 2009
Posts: 1262
PostPosted: Sun Aug 16, 2009 12:42 am Reply with quote
I wish Google had more search results for "Kimihiro Watanuki commands you." I won't be able to use it in the one CLAMP-related fanfic I have planned.
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Taiyz



Joined: 16 Aug 2005
Posts: 196
Location: Canada
PostPosted: Sun Aug 16, 2009 2:52 am Reply with quote
Throwing another favouring vote on the Haberkorn pile.

I find he offers up something unique to the series, which is one of the things xxxHolic excels at in the first place. On the other hand, I've heard Fukuyama act this same way too many times to maintain interest in his performance this time around.
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neocloud9



Joined: 06 Oct 2008
Posts: 1178
Location: Atlanta, GA
PostPosted: Sun Aug 16, 2009 7:12 am Reply with quote
I agree with almost everything in this review, but I didn't think Todd Haberkorn was annoying in the least.
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Kurishojo



Joined: 21 Dec 2006
Posts: 14
PostPosted: Sun Aug 16, 2009 8:38 am Reply with quote
Well put review, especially in your description of the series's character animation faults. Some episodes managed to achieve the lankiness of the manga while still looking solid and visually appealing, while others had me hollering at the television for another key-frame artist.

I have the join the chorus in my disagreement of your assessment of Todd Haberkorn's Watanuki however. I thought he was fantastic; I couldn't believe a voice actor had so successfully pulled off the tone and pitch while delivering the lines in a way that emphasized his emotional personality very clearly to North American viewers. The whole cast was great, one of my favourite dubs of recent years.
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littlegreenwolf



Joined: 10 Aug 2002
Posts: 4792
Location: Seattle, WA
PostPosted: Sun Aug 16, 2009 8:58 am Reply with quote
Watanuki was always an annoying little whiner. I'm with everyone else that Haberkorn was spot on, and he managed to stop whining for the serious stuff and put on a very good show. In fact with the few dub episodes I've seen via on-demand (none were ever in order sadly) I actually loved the whole cast. I was disliking the anime in general outside of the voice cast until I stumbled upon the little girl under the hydrangeas ep and went yelling "THIS! WHY CAN'T YOU DO THIS MORE!!" to the tv.

My mother thinks I'm insane.

Anyway, I agree with everything else in this dvd review. It's such a shame a better animation studio/production crew couldn't get XXXholic.
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Julia-the-Great



Joined: 14 May 2005
Posts: 328
PostPosted: Sun Aug 16, 2009 9:12 am Reply with quote
The real question is, which was the worse anime adaptation? xxxHolic or Tsubasa? Very Happy
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HJSoulma



Joined: 06 May 2009
Posts: 62
PostPosted: Sun Aug 16, 2009 9:23 am Reply with quote
Julia-the-Great wrote:
The real question is, which was the worse anime adaptation? xxxHolic or Tsubasa? Very Happy


I cast my vote for Tsubasa being worse by MILES. xxxHolic may be funny looking and occasionally slow, but Tsubasa completely fails to capture the tone and feeling of the manga, there's way too much dramatic music over needless periods of staring and brooding, the Japanese vocal track is forced and stilted and the English vocal track is that plus a total inability to pronounce anything right, which is all basically a shame because the manga is so sweet and cute in the beginning and so mysterious and dramatic later. Bee-train should never be allowed to touch anything other than girls-n-guns series. Ever.
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littlegreenwolf



Joined: 10 Aug 2002
Posts: 4792
Location: Seattle, WA
PostPosted: Sun Aug 16, 2009 9:26 am Reply with quote
Julia-the-Great wrote:
The real question is, which was the worse anime adaptation? xxxHolic or Tsubasa? Very Happy


... Tsubasa! Without a doubt Tsubasa! I can muster up enough patience to sit through an episode of XXXholic. I can barely sit through the opening credits of Tsubasa without running away in fear of the character designs and animation, let alone a full episode.

But then again XXXholic has stronger original material with it's manga than Tsubasa, so maybe that's why I can give it more patience.

I am SO happy that Madhouse is back with CLAMP for Kobato. I tend to like their CLAMP adaptions more so than any other studio, but I'm afraid I may be setting myself up for disappointment.

That said I have no problem with Production IG's adaptions. I prefer their work on the XXXholic movie and Tsubasa Tokyo Revelations OVA/Tsubasa movie. It's so disappointing to see those, and then see the tv series.
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wandering-dreamer



Joined: 21 Jan 2008
Posts: 1733
PostPosted: Sun Aug 16, 2009 11:01 am Reply with quote
The main reason I've never watched the animes of Holic and TRC (despite being a big fan of the manga) is that the art did look so wonky. It's true that the art looks odd in the manga as well but the animators seemed to emphasize the lankyness of the characters and certain other things which really made it look odd. I agree that Bee Train should stick to their girls with guns, or at least anime with a more normal art style.
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CCSYueh



Joined: 03 Jul 2004
Posts: 2707
Location: San Diego, CA
PostPosted: Sun Aug 16, 2009 1:05 pm Reply with quote
Julia-the-Great wrote:
The real question is, which was the worse anime adaptation? xxxHolic or Tsubasa? Very Happy
Haven't sen either but in general Clamp hasn't fared well in anime. CCS is about the best while Chobits & Angelic Layer were gutted too heavily for my taste. RG Veda & Tokyo Babylon did ok, but they were just snippets
I figure they put so much in their manga, animators can't do their works justice.
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John Casey



Joined: 31 May 2009
Posts: 1853
Location: In My Angry Center
PostPosted: Sun Aug 16, 2009 4:13 pm Reply with quote
CCSYueh wrote:
Julia-the-Great wrote:
The real question is, which was the worse anime adaptation? xxxHolic or Tsubasa? Very Happy
Haven't sen either but in general Clamp hasn't fared well in anime. CCS is about the best while Chobits & Angelic Layer were gutted too heavily for my taste. RG Veda & Tokyo Babylon did ok, but they were just snippets
I figure they put so much in their manga, animators can't do their works justice.

I dunno about that. X TV was a damn good show. Sure they took liberties, but how many other shows have done the same and pulled through with good results?

And this doesn't really count, but since it does have that touch of CLAMP...the cheese-fest that was Code Geass was entertaining as hell.
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Kelly



Joined: 17 Nov 2003
Posts: 868
Location: New York City
PostPosted: Sun Aug 16, 2009 4:28 pm Reply with quote
I also cannot disagree more about Todd Haberkorn's performance, which I have liked ever since watching A Midsummer Night's Dream. He's basically exactly how I heard Watanuki in my head while reading the manga. I've been looking forward to this box ever since then, and I think he nailed Watanuki - including the critical final two-part episode of the season and the extra regarding the background story of his childhood friend - kudos to whoever made the decision to make that a full special episode!

I was slightly disoriented at first because some of the stories were switched around from the order of the manga, but I got over that fast and thought the first season was a rather accurate translation of the equivalent manga material. Now, Funi really needs to lock and load Season 2. I wants me some Spider's Grudge arc. Can I hear an amen?
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