Red Garden Anime, Volume 2 (English)

April 16th, 2008

In Volume 1 of Red Garden, Kate, Claire, Rachel and Rose, four high school students on New York City’s Roosevelt Island, learn that their typical teen feeling of being uncomfortable in their bodies can be directly attributed to the fact that they are not, actually, *in* their bodies. They are living in borrowed bodies while their real bodies lay elsewhere, dead.

In Volume 2, the four girls attempt to hold on to what is left of normality for them, while they try to figure out how to integrate their new situation. It doesn’t go well. Rose breaks and runs which, they learn, could put them all in danger. The stress of the violence that fills their lives pushes its way into their previous relationships, threatening to destroy everything that they thought they had.

While Rachel and Rose cling to denial, Kate and Claire find the mansion where they died. And later, all four return to see the brutal truth of their deaths. Having hit bottom, they band together to find some small happiness in the borrowed lives that they are now living. They find themselves sitting in Claire’s apartment, with no phone, no electricity, nothing but food out of a can, and each other. For the moment, it’s enough.

Yuri in this episode is more of Paula’s obvious, but unstated, feelings for Kate – and Jessica’s openly stated jealousy of Kate. It’s slight, but Paula always comes off with class and (no pun intended) grace. She’s a positive role model as lesbian Student Council presidents go ^_^

No extras except trailers and the like, but the riveting drama and excellent characterizations are plenty to make this DVD worth watching. Once again, it is my pleasure to thank Daniel P for giving me the opportunity to review this fabulous anime.

Ratings:

Art – 6 (the noses get really distressing this volume)
Story – 8
Characters- 8
Yuri – 2
Service – 1

Overall – 8

As I watched the scene in the mansion, I couldn’t help but think how much *better* Red Garden would be, if Kate and Claire were an item. ^_^

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2 Responses

  1. ellie-i says:

    I just want to say thanks for reviewing this series – I never would have picked it up again otherwise. I downloaded it when it was first on Japanese screens, but the noses (seriously) made me stop, and so I never got past that into the wonderful characters and impressively-paced plot. Or got to know Kate, Clare, or Paula.
    I finished it about half an hour ago, and I’m now feeling an urge to splurge on a box-set. Thanks again!

  2. ellie – You’re very welcome. I do understand your distress about the noses, though. It was hard to get past that. But I’m really glad you did. :-)

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