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[ café reviews ]

Episode 2: Hono No Tabi Dachi
(Blazing Departure)

Copyright: © 1990 Kadokawa Video (Japan), 1995 US Manga Corp / Software Sculptors (North America)
Length: 40 minutes
Rating: NR, parental guidance suggested
Format: Subtitled (VHS/Hybrid Quicktime CD-ROM)

Based on the novels by: Yasuda Hitoshi and Mizuno Ryo Executive Producer: Kadokawa Tsuguhiko Producers: Tamiya Takeshi, Ikeda Kensho, Maruyama Masao Screenplay: Mami Watanabe Director: Nagaoka Akinori Character design: Izubuchi Yutaka English version producer: John O'Donnell Translator: Neil Nadelman

[ plot summary ]

volume 1

This is the beginning of the adventure for our group of heroes. Etoh has just returned from four years of training to become a priest of Falis to find Parn slightly injured after an encounter with some oddly behaving goblins. Why are they about during broad daylight? Once again, Parn is in trouble with the rest of the villagers when they find out that he had killed one of the goblins. However, Parn had also saved the Village Mayor's daughter. What is a Mayor to do in such a situation?

[ capsule review ]

In this episode, we discover the origins of our unlikely band of would-be heroes. The Mayor of Parn's town, faced with growing opposition from his constituents, but not wanting to punish Parn for his reckless behaviour, finds an ideal compromise - send him on a quest. He is joined by Ghim, an experienced dwarf who seeks Leylia, the missing daughter of Neese, high priestess of Marfa. Ghim manages to convince his old collegue and friend, Slayn, to leave his books behind and join him in his hunt. We also discover how we first meet Deedlit, the High Elf.

I found this episode to be the slowest moving of the series, primarily because it's almost all exposition and introductions. We also get to see quite clearly some of the limitations of the animation -- very simplistic at times, though there is heavy use of soft-focused backgrounds, blurred images and dramatic angles to convey the impression of movement. The music is once again quite varied, with some passages that I could have sworn were right out of Bach's transcripts (this can be good or bad, depending on how much like Bach.) The story shows us a very immature Parn, whose penchant for action seems to cause a lot of grief for everyone else. Somehow, I just can't picture him leading a quest. - AN

This is the true beginning of the series as episode 1 dropped us in the middle of the epic. Here we learn how Parn, Etoh, Ghim, and Slayn met and were later joined by Deedlit. While there is a fair amount of action and the story itself is good, I find Parn's portrayal somewhat tiresome. (Doesn't the guy get tired of being a foolish hothead??) Impetuous puts him mildly. However, the background music is again very good (although the transition music is enough to drive me up the wall; someone should have toned it down a touch). As the true beginning to the adventure, this episode makes for a very interesting story and introduces some interesting little tidbits of information which we are sure to have expanded upon as the adventure continues. -JYN

[ café rating ]

Original: Subbed: Dubbed:
Story: N/R 3 stars N/A
Direction: N/R 4 stars N/A
Acting: N/R 3 stars N/A
Animation: N/R 3 stars N/A
Music: N/R 4 stars N/A
Translation: N/R 5 stars N/A
Overall Rating: N/R 4 stars N/A

[ café trivia ]

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