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EP. REVIEW: Yona of the Dawn


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Hellwarden



Joined: 10 Aug 2013
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 22, 2014 10:28 am Reply with quote
You might wanna update this to say it's also streaming on Funimation, two weeks behind the the crunchyroll stream.
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angelmcazares
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Joined: 23 Sep 2010
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 22, 2014 10:48 am Reply with quote
Great review of the first 3 episodes. I am quite enjoying the drama and leisure pace of Yona. But I agree with Rebecca that the pace needs to pick up. And I feel confident that 2 cours should be able to produce a well made series.
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Hobbiton Guard



Joined: 05 Jan 2013
Posts: 62
PostPosted: Wed Oct 22, 2014 11:23 am Reply with quote
Great review of the first three episodes. I would personally rate it much higher than a B- (it's probably my favourite or second favourite series of the season). I'd probably sit it at a B+ or A- myself.

Anyway, I do agree that the animation has been used sparingly so far, and if Pierrot is anything like they used to be, that means that some great things could be in the works for important portions of the series (not that I know what they are... haven't read the manga after all). Or, on the negative outlook side of things, they could just be lazing about with their work (I hope it's the former and not the latter).

I love the shojou fantasy genre, first discovered it through Yuu Watase's work and have never looked back. I tend to love the fact that the characters are more in line with the awesome characterization of the best fantasy novels, then they are in shonen fantasy. Sure, it's not always that way (the second part of Fushigi Yuugi... mrgrgr that was a real issue), but it tends to be more fun for me to read and/or watch.
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SailorTralfamadore



Joined: 25 Feb 2014
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 22, 2014 8:02 pm Reply with quote
I would also probably rate this higher; I'm enjoying the heck out of it. But I'll also admit that I haven't seen as much of the "warrior girl in ancient China* with a reverse harem" stuff that this is clearly based on, so a lot of what might be tiring other people feels fresher to me.

I do wish the most recent episode had been more interesting than a flashback-centric episode, though. I'd like to see some progress on Yona's development into a badass and meeting more of her reverse harem.

*even if it's technically Korea, or at least the names are Korean
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Agent355



Joined: 12 Dec 2008
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 22, 2014 8:42 pm Reply with quote
I'm a big fan of the shoujo fantasy action genre. Moribito, The Twelve Kingdoms, Basara, Fushigi Yugi: Genbu Kaiden are some of my favorites and they all have heroic heroines, a fantasy setting and plots filled with political machinations. Another thing most of them have in common is that their heroines don't start out as heroic. I'm glad this show has two cours and can take its time developing Yona. I also feel that ep 3 *did* give us insight into Hak, showing us his relationship with Soo-Won so we can see how he feels betrayed as well. Hak is holding it together better than Yona because he was trained to, and he has to for Yona's sake (also, it's not his dad who was killed).

Fun fact: Yona means dove in Hebrew and is both a boy's and girl's name.

Rebecca, as the resident manga reviewer, do you have any insight on why fantasy shoujo manga like Yona rarely get printed in the US these days? Most of the classics are OOP (Red River, From Far Away, Basara) and new stuff doesn't get licensed. If Yona's anime does well, I'm hoping it will start a resurgence!
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Princess_Irene



Joined: 16 Dec 2008
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 23, 2014 2:43 pm Reply with quote
Hmm, that's a tough call. From a YA standpoint, straight up fantasy (of the swords and sorcery variety) isn't selling the way it did back when we were getting more similar shoujo translated - when Fushigi Yugi was coming out in English, top-selling YA/middle grade titles were Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, The Bad Beginning (Lemony Snicket), and The Amber Spyglass, which were all fairly classically fantasy titles, albeit of different sub-genres. Right now the three best selling YA books are If I Stay, The Fault in Our Stars, and Where She Went - none of which are fantasy and all of which deal with real life tragedies. The NY Times YA bestseller list has one post-apocalyptic title and one fantasy title, numbers 4 and 10 respectively. The middle grade list has no fantasy in the top 10 and one sci fi title. (Unless you count the one about the gorilla, but it's not really classic fantasy.)

So my best guess is that with shoujo manga being targeted at those age groups, the decline in fantasy's popularity there in general is a factor. Granted, many adults read shoujo manga, and the recent rise in josei titles would indicate that more companies are paying attention to that fact, and fantasy still sells fairly well with that age group.

We did get Dawn of the Arcana, which is a decent sign. So here's hoping that someone will see the similarities Yona has to that and take a chance!
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enurtsol



Joined: 01 May 2007
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 23, 2014 2:58 pm Reply with quote
I think it's also there's less shoujo anime. Unlike Japan where manga is its own thing, in N. America manga feeds off on anime. With less shoujo anime, publishers and book shops are less willing.
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Agent355



Joined: 12 Dec 2008
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 23, 2014 11:40 pm Reply with quote
Both good theories. I didn't think of the YA book connection at all (supernatural romance is a perennial best seller, right?) And the fact that shoujo manga get less anime adaptations than shonen manga do annoys me. I really hope that Yona is popular enough to start a trend. And I should check out Dawn of the Arcana
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bella22



Joined: 13 Nov 2010
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 27, 2014 12:54 am Reply with quote
I want them to make more episodes instead of 24 as the wikipedia says. It is great anime. Please do more episodes. Sad Sad
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Ultimatum



Joined: 03 Mar 2013
Posts: 150
PostPosted: Wed Oct 29, 2014 11:01 am Reply with quote
I'm a little surprised with how much I'm enjoying Yona. Shoujo adaptations tend to suffer when animated, but this one's been interesting to watch. Its pacing is slow, but it's never boring, and I'm interested to see where it will go from here. I just hope it doesn't devolve into a love triangle/quadrangle, etc. I mean, I know it's a reverse-harem, but that doesn't mean romance has to happen everywhere, right?

There are some parts I'm less sure of, mainly the mostly-male cast. I mean, I know this is back in fantasy history, so women might not get as many opportunities to shine, but c'mon. Everyone's hair is a rainbow and you have a dude that has a freaking dragon arm--female fighters aren't such a crazy idea. It's especially frustrating since I've read this author before, and my favorite work of hers had a pretty even male/female split, with some amazing female characters.
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Merida
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 29, 2014 11:16 am Reply with quote
I'm still more interested in Soo-Won and his revolution than Yona and Hak's antics to be honest, but i'm certainly looking forward to her getting a bit less...passive.

Btw, am i the only one who's annoyed by the soundtrack? It's incredibly obtrusive, even by shoujo drama standards.
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Tuor_of_Gondolin



Joined: 20 Apr 2009
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 29, 2014 11:35 am Reply with quote
It looks like Yona is starting to get past her shock and grief (a bit, anyway), which Hak noticed. Also, I noticed that the Yona in the preview for the next episode seems to be after a time skip. I wonder if that means a time skip is coming for the main plot line (as opposed to "glimpses of the future"? Either way, I'm looking forward to it.
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Agent355



Joined: 12 Dec 2008
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 29, 2014 11:55 am Reply with quote
Loved this ep, love the pace, the logical actions and reactions of all the characters, Soo(Su?)-Won's seeming regret, and Yona slowly coming to (and growing a spine).

Best line: spoiler["they killed Heang-Dea!" (Poor guy's still alive! Don't kill him off to get a reason to fight the Fire guys!)]
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MagicallyDelicious



Joined: 19 Jan 2008
Posts: 157
PostPosted: Wed Oct 29, 2014 11:57 am Reply with quote
I haven't read the manga but my assumption is there will be a small time skip and Hak will leave Yona behind. During this time, she learns a lot at from the village and when she and Hak are re-united, she is more similar to short-hair Yona.
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meruru



Joined: 16 Jun 2009
Posts: 386
PostPosted: Wed Oct 29, 2014 12:21 pm Reply with quote
Ultimatum wrote:
I just hope it doesn't devolve into a love triangle/quadrangle, etc. I mean, I know it's a reverse-harem, but that doesn't mean romance has to happen everywhere, right?

There are some parts I'm less sure of, mainly the mostly-male cast. I mean, I know this is back in fantasy history, so women might not get as many opportunities to shine, but c'mon. Everyone's hair is a rainbow and you have a dude that has a freaking dragon arm--female fighters aren't such a crazy idea.


I find this statement kind of weird, because having all guys in the main cast plus the one central girl is what makes it a reverse harem. But from what I've seen, usually the majority of the harem is there for eye candy, with maybe one major love triangle, though not always. Since the very beginning premise is that Yona was in love with Soo Won, however, I would expect a love triangle in the future. If for no other reason than because it's obvious there is a romance focus.
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