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Where the heck was Volume 4 of My HiME when I was watching Volume 3? I wanted other people’s misery and all I got from Volume 3 was goofy evil creatures that ate cake. And here I was ready for some more goofy and Volume 4 had to go and be self-important and serious. How vexing.
After all the happy-go-luckiness of Volume 3, Volume 4 wallows deep in Mai’s various emotional conflicts, seasoned with a little light portentous (and pretentious) apocalyptic plot for flavor. But we’re just past halfway on the series, so even when the entire world blows up, we’re just not as tense about it as we should be, I think.
So, the story picks up on the night of the Tamayura festival which, among many other things, comes along with a traditional love tradition, in which lovers traditionally tie ribbons to traditionally express their desire for an eternal love. More importantly – and probably even more traditionally – lovers sneak into the woods for a quick snog. Mai *almost* gets a good first kiss, but then the schlub has to go and ruin it. Then the world blows up.
After the world blows up, we learn of the Searrs Foundation’s unreasonable plan to bring world peace by something something the something, until we all fall in line like the cattle we are. ‘Cause that’s worked before.
Lots of fights, and Mai nobly sacrifices herself for the first time in the series. Don’t worry – she’ll get to do it again later. And Miyu and Alyssa (who I still like better as a bird) get to have a melodramatic end. Don’t worry…they’ll get to do it again later, too.
Let’s see…for Yuri, we have Yukino’s hidden desire for eternal togetherness with Haruka, Chie and Aoi are eternally together, despite their occasional vageuish mention of wanting a guy and lots of Miyu x Alyssa snuggles. And Shizuru’s continued leering after Natsuki, which in this volume is pretty laid back. Almost as if they didn’t want us to know…oh, wait, that’d be a spoiler. ;-)
The “Character Featurettes” (seriously, that’s what it says on the DVD!) are the usual powerpoint slides accompanied by insightful monologue. This time we get to hear the deep feelings of Tate – whose deep feelings seem to be “Mai has large breasts” – Miyu and Alyssa – who ruins it all by mentioning her father, what a jerk – and a “funny” discussion of Orphans by Nagi and Natsuki. The actually funny thing about these was that I had completely forgotten them all until I went to write this review, so I had to throw the DVD in to see what they were. I forgot to change the language track to Japanese. Honestly, I jumped when Tate began to talk in English! It was so stupid.
Art – 6
Character – 7
Story – 6
Yuri – 3
Service – 6
Overall – 7
The volume ends with Nagi pretentiously (and portentously) telling the HiME that the “fun” is just beginning and now they have to fight one another. In my reality, I’d have nodded, and suggested to my fellow HiME that, before we fight one another, we should kick the snarky little bastard’s ass. But hey, that’s just me.