Yuri Anime:My Hime, Volume 1 (English)

June 24th, 2006

Two things I must start with:

One – you are all WRONG. I am watching the first volume right now, even as I type, with two other people and we all agree that the animation for My Hime is teh suck. The first episode, which is always the best in terms of animation, is nasty bad, and it goes downhill massively for the rest of the volume. All your comments to the contrary are wishful thinking and bad 20/20 memory.

Secondly, the subtitles on this volume didn’t work for me, and apparently I’m not alone. I will, when I have time/care to, I’ll run the disk on my computer and see if they work. I am informed (just this minute, by an unconfirmed source) that one needs a new DVD player to get them to work.

In any case, I am reminded of many things while I watch this volume. Fanservice, primarily. And angst. Did I mention service? Oh, and how much I really, really dislike Nagi’s voice. But, on the whole, in the first few eps, Mikoto, Mai and Natsuki all get to be really quite cool for a little. Poor Natsuki – she starts out so cool and just goes down hill from episode 4 on. (As Serge says, she becomes the butt of all their jokes – no pun intended, of course…)

So…we had heard that Shizuru’s American VA was painful, so when she got on screen, we changed audio track and it lasted exactly 4 words. We all screamed and I switched back – fast. ^_^;

Okay, so let’s back up. The story at the moment appears to be about Tokiha Mai, a “typical” large-breasted high school girl with a “typical” terminally ill younger brother who is traveling to a “typical” private academy, where she finds she has “typical” magical fighting skills and a “typical” large dragon-like monster partner.

Of course it’s not that simple – there will be much personal and mythological angst that will explain many things, except of course why no one kills Nagi.

On the yuri side, there was really very little, but with the addition of the DVD extras, they’ve totally changed the yuri dynamic. There’s Shizuru teasing Natsuki, but nothing really significantly Yuri – except in the shared lizard brain of the fandom – until the fourth DVD extra, which ups the Yuri quite a bit. I should also point out that Yuricon Mailing List Ashley was so adamant about the (completely invisible in the original broadcast, but with the highly suggestive DVD extra, their Yuri score changes completely, too) pairing of Aoi and Chie, that the concept spread TO Japan, where it was incorporated into the Mai Otome storyline. That’s got to count for something. ^_^

Ratings:

Art – 6 at best, but it really does go down in episode 2 to a 3 or so.
Character – 6
Story – 6
Yuri – 4 but only because of the DVD extras, otherwise it would be a 2
Overall – 9

Overall – 6

My Hime (and don’t think it kills me that they changed the name) is, as Serge originally said, fun trash. IMHO, underneath the plot, it’s really just an ero-game.

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6 Responses

  1. Sean says:

    But… but the ShizNat! Their wuv is so twoo! Madeline Kahn told me so!

  2. That’s the fourth time Madeline Kahn’s come up in the last two days….

  3. philip72 says:

    “There’s Shizuru teasing Natsuki, but nothing really significantly Yuri”

    I’m a little confused,
    what about Shizuru’s declaration to Natsuki about how totally in love she is with her? Or the romantic kiss Natsuki gave Shizuru in the second last episode?
    I thought the Yuri in Mai Hime was more than blatant. Shizuru was pretty clear several times on the fact that the love she had for Natsuki was both romantic and sexual, rather than simple friendship.

  4. Philip72 – I am reviewing THIS single volume – that is why the review is titled “My Hime, Volume 1”.

    The second to last episode does not show up in this volume.

  5. Philip72 says:

    Ahhh…My bad, gomen nasai.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Your copy of Mai Hime differs wildly from my copy. From the movement to character designs (I mean, those otome/maid/parfait dress things, what the hell were they?!) Mai Hime was far superior to Otome. Natsuki’s face didn’t randomly change colour, Tomoe’s eyes often go wibbly for reasons other than face-wibblin’-psycho-bitchism, and again . . . the clashnfall. In Hime, you had interestingly conceived weapons and well choreographed fights (Mikoto and Natsuki’s first fight, for example.) In otome, Haruka has a neat weapon. She uses it once. And the zwish-past-enemy-explodes-behind-you thing, though cool when Shizuru does it, is completely lazy, especially for a first episode smackdown. And Ninazilla was the absolute lamest in city destroying whirlwinds. I mean .. . lame. Have I been building Hime up in my mind since it ended till it became a paragon that Otome could never compete with? Maybe. Have I got THAT good an imagination? I’d say no.

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