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[ café reviews ]

Episode 11: Majoshi No Yabou
(The Wizard's Ambition)

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: Watanabe Mami Director: Ryu Taiji Character design: Izubuchi Yutaka Music: Hagita Mitsuo English version producer: John O'Donnell Translator: Neil Nadelman

[ plot summary ]

volume 5

With the death of both Beld and Ashram, the lands of Marmo should be in total disarray. Yet Kashue's scouts report that the land of Marmo itself appear to be alive. Who could be causing this? With the Sceptor of Domination in the hands of Wagnard, Kashue surmises that the wizard intends to resurrect the Goddess of Destruction herself. Deedlit realises that for that to happen, she is in mortal danger -- for the eternal life of a High Elf would need to be sacrificed to bring Kardis back.

But Karla has other plans for Lodoss, and the resurrection of Kardis is not one of them. In order to stop Wagnard, Karla has a secret weapon -- Ashram! Can Parn protect Deedlit from the clutches of Wagnard? And will we finally see a final showdown between Parn and Ashram?

[ capsule review ]

Up to now, I haven't made any comments about the quality of translation of the series. That in itself should say something -- the story moves just as well with English subtitles as it does with the original Japanese dialog. That doesn't mean that there aren't any differences -- there are plenty. But the intent and the flow of the dialog are maintained, which is of primary importance. Not too many companies can claim that they do this! While we're on the subject of technicalities, there are a few things that bother me about writers -- for example, when the Lances of Myrii were being pounded, they already had their final shape. Or, as in this episode, the horses all run at full gallop when travelling great distances. Dramatic, yes, but not realistic... (But then, I seem to have no problems accepting the existance of fire-breathing dragons. Go figure!) Maybe we'll have to re-visit the dreaded Laws of Animé!

Something must be happening to my tolerance levels. Parn's character again overdoes the dramatics, but I didn't mind it so much -- perhaps because in this situation, the vocalisations fit the situation. The manner in which Slayn, Etoh, Leylia, Fianna, Shiris and Orson are all re-united with Parn is good -- and makes all too obvious that the final climax is just ahead. One item that did bother me is the way Ashram casually tossed aside the last vestiges of Pirotess after being rescued by Karla. I like my characters to be multi-faceted, whether they be lawful good or chaotic evil (I thought that Ashram's dying actions in the previous episode showed a side of humanity within him.) We also know that the confrontation between Ashram and Parn will be here soon -- Ashram, the wielder of Beld's sword of darkness; Parn, the wielder of Fahn's sword of light. The series may be long, but as far as I'm concerned, the time's not wasted. - AN

The story in this episode deals primarily with Deedlit's character who is truly well portrayed by Tohma Yumi and is definitely not overacted like Parn's. Rather, we get the feel that all is not well with our light-hearted elf, and that she knows or at least suspects what lies ahead. More in tune with the earlier episodes, the feel of this episode once again gets the attention of the viewer and holds it. There are moments of overacting by Parn but by now we should be used to that right? Karla's meddling continues as we see that Ashram is in fact still alive and is now working his way back to Marmo. Personally, I preferred Sakakibara's depiction of Karla however, it's still fairly well done. The actual capture of Deedlit is well done with the power-mad sorceror Wagnard capturing her himself. A touch over done, the sorceror has definitely gone insane now that Kardis has touched him with her power. - JYN

[ café rating ]

Original: Subbed: Dubbed:
Story: N/R 4 stars N/A
Direction: N/R 2 stars N/A
Acting: N/R 3 stars N/A
Animation: N/R 3 stars N/A
Music: N/R 3 stars N/A
Translation: N/R 4 stars N/A
Overall Rating: N/R 3 stars N/A

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