Reviewby Zac Bertschy,
Card Captor Sakura
DVD 9: Winter Wonderland
In yet another installment of Card Captor Sakura, Sakura fights the Freeze card and the Firey card, Kero-chan's secret is hinted at, and the relationship between Sakura and Li grows ever stronger.
There's not a whole lot you can really say about Pioneer's release of Card Captor Sakura that hasn't already been said. It's one of the first releases intended solely to please hardcore fans of the series, and given that it's a magical girl show, it was a bit of a longshot in the first place. Lo and behold, it outsold the hacked up English dub release, Cardcaptors, and now it remains to be the only version of Card Captor Sakura that exists on the market.
That having been said, volume 9 in the series is very similar to the first 8. The DVD release is somewhat minimal; they give you 3 episodes and not a whole lot else. There's a credit-free opening, and they let you watch the little “Kero-chan check!” omake bits at the end of the episode, and that's about it. Menus are not animated and the whole thing seems like they're just stamping these things out and dumping them on to the market.
Then again, you can't blame Pioneer. The fans can't expect a bells-and-whistles release of a show like this, especially when there's no dub track to attract the majority of the anime-buying audience. Pioneer deserves a commendation for even releasing the series uncut and subtitled in the first place, so expecting more than this is foolish. The episodes that are included on the disc are negligible, save for the final episode, which concludes the first season of the series. They hint at what Kero-chan's real secret is, and you see the relationships between Sakura and Li develop even further. There are even a few hints at Yukito's real identity. Other than that, the first two episodes are the type of episodic fluff that makes up the bulk of this series, so there isn't a whole lot to say. If you can stand how ridiculously sugary this show is on a regular basis and how slowly the plot moves along, they won't bother you. For those who appreciate a story that moves a little faster, with a little less repetition, these episodes are more of the same old thing. The whole “Tomoyo is creepily obsessed with Sakura and her costumes” thing gets a wee bit tired after they've used it in every single episode since the first. That's not to say this isn't a quality show; it's certainly the best example of its genre. The animation and music are far above par for a show that ran as long as this one did. It's just that after 36 episodes, viewers are waiting for something new, and it never really comes along. Hardcore fans will no doubt eat this disc alive, but passive fans might be getting a little impatient with the repetition.
Overall (sub) : B
Story : B-
Animation : A
Art : A
Music : A
+ A few more hints at the real storyline, and beautiful art and animation to boot.
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