[Anime] Maburaho

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[Anime] Maburaho

Postby PaladinBlue » Sat Jun 11, 2005 7:39 pm

Series: Maburaho
Licensing: ADV Films
Dubbing Studio: ADV Studios
Animation: J.C. Staff
Genre: Harem, comedy, magical
Age Rating: TV-14

Okay, so it's a harem school comedy show with some magic thrown in to spice things up. Sounds kind of like Tenchi meets Harry Potter in some crazy kind of mix-up that wouldn't work in a million years. If this is what you were thinking first time you saw a preview for this, I have just one thing to say to you: Wrong, sir!

Story: So, Kazuki Shikimori is your average high school student attending Aoi Academy. Well, okay, he isn't average. He's a loser. In a school where the average student can use his magic over 1000 times, Kazuki can only use his 8. In addition, he has been shunned by all but a few of his closest "friends" ever since he transferred. Until, that is, things suddenly went horribly in his favor. By a wonderful streak of good luck, Kazuki found out that his child would be one of the greatest mages to ever exist. Unfortunately, every other girl in the school found out about it, too, so he got everyone out for his genes. Don't worry, though, it gets better. In comes Yuna Miyama as a transfer student to class 2-B claiming she's Kazuki's wife.

Whew, I'll stop there before I bore you, but anyway, this is the most interesting harem story to come out in. . . ever. Kazuki isn't your normal harem hero guy, either. He has personality and character. Neither are the three leading ladies the only ones to get characterization. There are over ten characters in this show who get as much development as your average single lead does.

Animation: Being from J.C. Staff, you probably already expect the bright color key and gorgeous backgrounds, but there is much more to this show than that. The character designs almost perfectly mimic Eiji Komatsu's original works on the novels (and his stuff comes with the covers), so everyone is really gorgeous to look at. The women all have a soft, gentle look to them while the men are kind of tough, exactly what you'd expect, but in a show in which the ending animation features a character who appears in a single episode, everyone has his own look.

Music: In the first volume, the music was really nothing special. Op/ed were great, but the background music was functional while being good. By the third disc, however, the bg work becomes excellent. Especially at the halfway point in the series, everything fits the series absolutely perfectly. Listening to me, Geneon, ADV, or Bandai? Gimme a soundtrack now!

English Dub: With ADV Studios handling the dubbing once again (I don't know why I still include "dubbing studio" with ADV releases, Monster Island doesn't exist anymore), it is hard to call this area anything but great. Blake Shepard's Kazuki has much more of an understanding voice about him, instead of the kind of geek Daisuke Sakaguchi gives. Rin, likewise, is also voiced very well, even keeping a more proper speaking pattern by never having a contraction (according to writer Tiffany Grant, is Rin ever got a contraction, Kim Prause would automatically correct her on it) and still sounding her age. Yuna, played by the greatness that is Jessica Boone, sounds appropriately sweet, yet assertive. Those are just three examples in a fantastic English dub.

Japanese Dub: Japanese is the same as the English: great and nothing less. While Kazuki's voice could get on your nerves a little, everyone else sounds great all the time, and, as geeky as he sounds, Kazuki's Japanese still manages to sound more like a kind character as the series goes on. Kuriko's Japanese voice, Yuki Matsuoka, fits her perfectly, and keeps her voice on that thin line between "genuinely sexy" and "total slut".

Extras: And once again, ADV has packed this series pretty full of extras. Aside from the obligatory clean opener/closer, previews, and artwork, we get three commentaries: Blake Shepard/Luci Christian, Tiffany Grant/Sandra Krasa, and Jessica Boone/Monica Rial (in that order); a Magic Times insert with doujin from the voice actors of the original Japanese version, fun little spells for use in everyday life, the "Goal of the Month", and even some interesting history on magic users throughout the ages; and, lastly and probably least, an interview with Richard Kim, the translator.

Okay, even if you don't like harem comedies, you really should check out Maburaho. Even as early as the second disc, it ceases to be just a harem show and turns into something more simple yet beautiful than anything that has come before it. J.C. did a wonderful job animating and ADV did a wonderful job translating.
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Last edited by PaladinBlue on Sat Apr 15, 2006 12:51 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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sounds good

Postby evilnick06 » Sat Jun 11, 2005 10:46 pm

this is one I will have to check out
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Postby RuneX » Tue Jun 21, 2005 2:32 pm

Great review for a great series. I have been promoting this series since its first ep was released on RAW a while back. Its actually my favorite anime series period and is great from beggining to end.

I will say though that I did find that if you watched the japanese dub as many times as I have getting used to the english took a few eps. Overall the English dub is really good, but for some reason I just dont really like Kuriko's VA. I just dont think it fits the role as well as the Jpn VA. I agree that Kazuki is better in the English dub so I guess thats a trade off. Regardless though, its such a minor thing that it doesnt even come close to harming the quality of either jpn or english dubs. Its probably the closest thing to perfect I have seen come out yet on both shores. I am concerned about a few points later in the series where certian phrases in japanese wont really work in English, gonna be interesting to see how they make it work.
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Postby PaladinBlue » Tue Jun 21, 2005 4:51 pm

RuneX wrote:I am concerned about a few points later in the series where certian phrases in japanese wont really work in English, gonna be interesting to see how they make it work.


ADV usually translates those pretty well, and the translator is definitely dedicated to remaining as close to the Japanese as possible.
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Postby TheGuy79 » Wed Jul 06, 2005 4:39 pm

Nice Review. I have seen i think maybe 4 or 5 eps. so far of the English Dub only and have to say its one of the better comedy series I've seen in awhile. I agree completely on the animation, its some the best I've seen, overall its a great series.
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Postby PaladinBlue » Sat Apr 15, 2006 12:51 pm

Update: changed review to entire series.
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Postby evilnick06 » Sat Jul 08, 2006 2:29 pm

I finally saw all of this series and liked it alot
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Postby Aion-the-Sinner » Sat Jul 08, 2006 4:08 pm

*is still waiting for a thinpack*

... but I really am looking forward to it, just not enough to sink all the money in my possession into it >_>
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Postby evilnick06 » Tue Jul 11, 2006 4:29 pm

ya can't wait for the thinpack on this one
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Postby Tsuyoshi » Tue Jul 11, 2006 9:36 pm

Also, remember that Thin Paks are going to be release a good year now since the end of the individual DVDs.
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oh

Postby evilnick06 » Tue Jul 11, 2006 11:37 pm

that suckes still but I can watch castle in the sky, howls moving castle, spirited away and many other good movies to past the time and new series
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Postby Veoryn87 » Wed Jul 12, 2006 10:49 am

I'll have to watch it.
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Postby ChronoJehuty » Fri Jul 21, 2006 11:43 pm

After the first episode, I loved it but due to budget constraints I couldn't afford it. Now I'm looking foward to the thin pack.
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Postby Kruszer » Wed Jul 26, 2006 8:31 pm

It sounds like a good series though I'm waiting for the thinpack as well along with  another ADV release Gilgimesh.
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Postby Bench » Tue Feb 13, 2007 3:14 am

I loved this anime... Episode 12 was one of the greatest episode ever in the series...  Anyway great anime it's a must watch.
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Postby Selaphiel » Tue Feb 13, 2007 2:31 pm

Oh, yes, a box set is coming out in.... I think it was April, I will finally pick this series up. Been waiting forever for this.
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Postby KUNAI » Fri Mar 02, 2007 8:15 pm

Watched a few eps on demand and it was pretty funny. Guess I will check out the box set when it comes out.
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