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REVIEW: My-HiME DVD 1


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Blaise



Joined: 04 Oct 2004
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 03, 2006 12:19 pm Reply with quote
Uhh.. I thought that the production company had chosen the english name, about when Episode 10 came out.
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Ryllharu



Joined: 26 Aug 2005
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 03, 2006 12:33 pm Reply with quote
Maybe it's a bit premature to say this series doesn't have similar dark overtones and emotional baggage.
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Nagisa
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 03, 2006 12:51 pm Reply with quote
Ryllharu wrote:
Maybe it's a bit premature to say this series doesn't have similar dark overtones and emotional baggage.


Though things do get darker (and magnitudes better, I can't wait to see what scores volume four and on end up getting) later on in the series, the review strictly covers the episodes presented on the first disc, which very much remain largely within the "romance-comedy fluff with some fantasy action" vein.
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Zalis116
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 03, 2006 1:09 pm Reply with quote
I've been looking forward to this review for awhile...

Key wrote:
It also doesn’t hurt that the title character (of the original title, anyway) is quite an appealing lead heroine. She’s caring, resolute, and vivacious without being over-the-top in any aspect, something that’s uncommon in recent anime series.

For these reasons, Tokiha Mai may be my overall favorite anime character. Of course, she's very easy on the eyes without being rediculous/out-of-proportion, but I think the "key" word (haha) for me is "resolute." She's a fairly ordinary girl, and she doesn't really want this destiny of fighting/battle, but she accepts it with the determination to protect her brother and later her friends. But, she's not "over the top" or perfect, either; in later episodes, we get to see more of her vulnerabilities to balance out the character. (Contrast this to someone like Sakura from CCS-sure, she's cute and charming, but she's "zettai daijoubu" cheerful almost all the time.)

As for the dub and overall R1 presentation: I'd say that most of the voices are pretty much on target, even some of the weird ones like Shiho and Mikoto. One potential purist complaint is that Takumi never calls Mai by her name in Japanese, but the dub has him alternating between "Mai" and "Sis." (Same way with Shiho & her "oniichan," Tate.) Honestly, I don't see a problem with this change, since we don't have a cultural tradition of addressing older siblings by title. Having him and Shiho use the names makes things flow better in English.
Key wrote:
The only potential oddity is that Class President Fujino sounds like a Southern belle in the English dub, but it’s hard to tell whether that’s meant to reflect an accent in the original performance.

Fujino Shizuru does in fact have an accent in the original performance; it's a Kyoto accent, and while it's not quite as noticeable as the MSA Abenobashi Kansai dialect, it is distinctive. So, the "southern belle" accent is acceptable, and just like the Japanese, it gives Shizuru a soft, lilting tone, and the dub version isn't over-the-top like Kitsune from Love Hina.

OK, rounding things out...I watched episode 4 (dubbed with subtitles on) alongside the fansub, and the DVD video is sharper with brighter colors. A few things are "de-culturized" (like the moé joke in the episode 1 preview), but as a fan of the series, I'm satisfied with Bandai's treatment. (The pun in the series title still more or less works, imo.) All we need is for the dub actors to improve and get heavily into their characters by the time the major drama/emotional baggage starts up.
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PantsGoblin
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Joined: 27 Jun 2005
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 03, 2006 1:41 pm Reply with quote
Wow, if the first volume got such a good review, I'm wondering what kind of reviews My-HiME will get when it really starts kicking into high gear later on. And also, to your disappointment, spoiler[Shiho doesn't get offed later in the series (of course, other people we don't want to die, "die"). Being voiced by Sakura Nogawa, I really like Shiho though, even though she isn't often well liked.]
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Fronzel



Joined: 11 Sep 2003
Posts: 1906
PostPosted: Mon Apr 03, 2006 2:56 pm Reply with quote
I want to know how people will react to the ending.

Good lord, the ending!
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v1cious



Joined: 31 Dec 2002
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 03, 2006 3:00 pm Reply with quote
Fronzel wrote:
I want to know how people will react to the ending.

Good lord, the ending!


agreed. that's where the audience is divided on this series.
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topleka



Joined: 24 Sep 2005
Posts: 42
PostPosted: Mon Apr 03, 2006 3:10 pm Reply with quote
To be honest, I don't mind the name change at all. I've always spelled it "My HiME" based on the fact that it's spelled that way in the URL of the official site:
http://www.sunrise-inc.co.jp/my-hime/

That's really the only reasoning I have. Anime hyper
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Pleroma



Joined: 30 Nov 2005
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 03, 2006 3:46 pm Reply with quote
The series would be so much better if it ended at 25 Evil or Very Mad

Anywho, Personally I really disliked the dub. Aside from the fact that virtually zero effort went into the presentation (no original extras, crappy box art) the voicing is generally poor by today's standards. BTW, I am not a sub fanatic or anything like that, I do enjoy well done dubs, but sadly this is not one of them and that is huge error for such a character centric franchise (god save my beloved Otome from such travesty when it gets licenced.)

Mai - The only real standout, no complaints here as the voice is appealing and in character.

Tate - sounds too much like any other stock anime guy, but since he was not terribly distinctive to begin with its passable.

Mikoto - NO, just no. Her whole cat-like air is pretty much lost here. Mikoto has a very distinctive edge to her speech but sounds just like any other young anime girl in the dub.

Natsuki - pretty good actually, a bit inconsistent when showing her cuter side but nothing terrible.

Shizuru - UGH, ADV did it right with Osaka but this studio fails horribly. Firstly because beyond the accent her voice should be very distinctive and elegant and secondly because its painfully obvious that the VA is not an actual southerner and does a pretty poor job of phoning it in.

Haruka - Just WTF, how do we go from law enforcement maniac to snobby valley girl? The whiny high pitched voice just doesn't suit the character at all and they botched her running gag as well (misspeling words)

Shiho - Just plain annoying, but same can be said for the original, I'll reserve my judgement on this one until we get to the drama.

Mashiro - pretty good, MH mashiro was never anything to write home about anyhow (unlike her awsome MO self)

Yukino - A little too understated but pretty good otherwise.

Reito - BAD, he was the ultimate smooth educated type, now he sounds utterly ordinary which is really gonna start to hurt as the show goes on. Just a bad VA all around, why do they hire such people?

Nagi - The WORST performance by far. Nagi is supposed to be the sly misterious trickster but instead we get another talentless VA that sounds profoundly bored all the way though. Again, how the hell do these people keep their jobs? ANYONE who has actually seen the show and heard Nagi in japanese could do a better job.


One can hope that the VA's improove once the series hits its stride and ultimately manage to deliver the pure awsomeness that are EP 17-25 but its not looking too well.
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Sabakyuu



Joined: 11 Nov 2004
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 03, 2006 6:54 pm Reply with quote
I always thought the official name was My-HiME and that Mai was just a pun...as the website suggests...but anyway I thought the review for this was perfect;I had my doubts about it getting a high score,so good job. Smile I really agree with the comparison to fullmetal alchemist, however the point in My-HiME when the series gets dark and twisted I think it manages to surpasses fma in it's drama and story. Twisted Evil

Personally I'd give the Musical Score an A+ as the soundtrack is just spectacular, if not the best.

I admit I also heavily despise the ending, but the overall delivery of the series was too impressive for me to base it of the last episode =/.

I only heard a few samples of the dub, but I thought it was very good. Like Zalis116, I think Mai is among my favourite anime characters, probably my favourite. There's just something about her that makes you fall in love. As long as her voice is good in the dub, I really have no complaints. I was never too fond of the japanese voices until the later episodes anyway. It's quite possibly the voice actors will improve as the japanese ones greatly surprised me. Never heard Shizuru's english voice, but in my opinion I don't think any english voice actor could top her cool japanese accent anyway. Although I didn't really start to like her voice until she started saying spoiler[Kiyohime -_-;.]

I strongly suggest people to get My-HiME, if they haven't seen it already. Laughing
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kusanagi-sama



Joined: 22 Aug 2004
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 03, 2006 8:12 pm Reply with quote
Quote:
Extras available in the Extras subheading on the Main Menu are limited to company trailers and a promo clip, but additional ones can be found at the end of each episode, after the Next Episode preview. (They are also accessible from the Episode Select menus, although you can’t chapter-skip to them.) These bits, which are generally more light-hearted and racy than the regular series content, fill in more background and setting details. Like many Bandai releases, the closer retains the original Japanese credits, with the English credits tacked on at the end of the volume.


In regards to this paragraph stating that you can't chapter skip to the character featurettes after the next episode previews, this is a false statement. On both my computer (Using PowerDVD 5) and my DVD Player, I have been able to chapter skip to these.

The only thing I can't do is click on the navigational slider in PowerDVD to go back and forth in the episodes.
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Kalium



Joined: 15 Aug 2003
Posts: 84
Location: Michigan
PostPosted: Mon Apr 03, 2006 9:24 pm Reply with quote
Quote:
Duran, Natsuki’s Child, is a wolf-like mecha

I always figured this for a Duran Duran joke. Hungry like a... Yeah.

Quote:
Mai’s is the dragon-like Kagutsuchi

I figured it for a Phoenix. Never figured out the sword in the mouth, though.

Quote:
without the dark overtones and heavy baggage

This cannot be stressed enough: yet.

Oh, and just wait for Akira to show up. Hehe.
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Key
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 03, 2006 9:30 pm Reply with quote
kusanagi-sama wrote:
In regards to this paragraph stating that you can't chapter skip to the character featurettes after the next episode previews, this is a false statement. On both my computer (Using PowerDVD 5) and my DVD Player, I have been able to chapter skip to these.

The only thing I can't do is click on the navigational slider in PowerDVD to go back and forth in the episodes.


Hmmm, I wasn't able to do that on my regular DVD player, and it isn't that old a unit. I'll try it on my computer and see if it works that way.

Concerning the possible Duran Duran joke in a different post: yeah, I also wondered if that wasn't some sly bit of homage, but I didn't think to mention it in the review.
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kusanagi-sama



Joined: 22 Aug 2004
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 03, 2006 10:18 pm Reply with quote
My JVC XV-SA602 DVD player is only about 1 1/2 years old. Apparently my DVD player can do anything. It'll even play the Planetes floaters.
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Nagisa
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 03, 2006 10:19 pm Reply with quote
"Duran" is apparently also a reference to something from...Celtic mythology, I believe (the vast majority of the Children in the series are rooted in some form of mythology; Nao's "Juliet" is based on Lovecraft's mythos, for example). Unfortunately I don't have that reference on me to look it up again at the moment, but I'm sure someone could help expand upon this point for me.
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