The Anime Cafe - Your complete source for anime reviews


[ go to homepage ]
[ what's new - editorials, calendar, to-do list, news articles, mailbag and archives ]
[ episode-by-episode anime reviews, how we review ]
[ a parent's guide to anime, title list, titles by category ]
[ the anime encyclopædia ]
[ café trivia - anime trivia ]
[ anime humour, the laws of anime, light articles, etc ]
[ serious articles, essays, anime guides, etc. ]
[ message forum for the discussion of anime, manga, reviews, etc. ]
[ faq about the café and contributors, awards given to the café, etc. ]
[ feedback forms, error reports, or e-mail the café ]
[ links to other resources on the internet ]
[ site map ]


[ café reviews ]


Maison Ikkoku Episode 3
Kurayami De Doki-Doki! Kyoko-san To Futari Kiri
(Hearts Afire in the Dark! All Alone With Kyoko)

Distributed by: Shogakukan Video (Japan), Viz Video (North America)
Length: 26 minutes
Rating: NR, parental guidance suggested
Format: Original Japanese dialog (LD), subtitled (VHS) and dubbed (VHS)

Based on the comic series by Takahashi Rumiko. Produced by Kitty Film and Fuji TV. English version by Yoshida Toshifumi and Trish LeDoux, Viz Video.

[ plot summary ]

volume 1

The student qualification exams are upcoming, and Godai's trying to study hard. Trying can be very trying when you live at Ikkoku-kan. Rug-rats skateboarding in the halls. Tenants making fun of you and partying in your room (not to mention one particular tenant who seems to like wandering the halls in a see-through negligeé!) To top it all off, there's a certain attractive apartment manager that's always on Godai's mind...

[ capsule review ]

I've been eagerly awaiting to get my hands on the Viz subtitled release of this episode. I figured that this would be the first major test of their ability to translate a very specific Japanese idiomatic expression. (Well, the second major one to crop up in the series. In the first episode, there's a joke around the word koshi -- but I also read the Viz graphic novel, and they did a better job in the graphic novel than in the video.) Well... Perhaps some things are best left untouched. I won't mention too much about the specific translation item, other than a) the subtitled version doesn't work very well, and b) it makes a good piece of trivia.

Aside from that, I find Takahashi's characterisations of her male leads tiresome at times. (Not all men are lecherous -- at least not outwardly!) That one item aside, I found this episode both hilarious and touching -- hilarious because of her incredible wit when it comes to word play and situational comedy, touching with her portrayal of a young couple falling in love during the second world war. Her tie in with the kanrinin mentioned in the first episode was a great touch. The screenplay was done surprisingly well. Yotsuya's dramatic word suggestions when Godai is heading down the stairs... suberu! ochiru! sora ni tobe! gut-wrenchingly funny.) The subtitled translations are very loose, and thought they get the point across most times, they can be misleading -- well, with the exception of the skateboarding joke. That one was really does deserve an 'F' grade. If you understand Japanese, you'll find this a lot of fun. If you're reading subtitles, you'll probably end up saying "huh?!?" a few times... - AN

Hmmm... I'm going to have to remember that all guys seem to be decidedly lecherous here. I don't think I ever thought that a guy would be so desperate as to try to kiss an unconscious woman. Otherwise, I found this episode to be a lot of fun. I especially liked the word play with Yotsuya and his Suberu! Ochiru! Sora ni tobe! He's got a great voice for his role and the timings were just priceless. Kentaro's little episode with skateboarding in the hallway and later getting even with Godai for having hit him by yelling Suberu! Suberu! Suberitaina! was also very well done and lots of fun.

I think that I'm very glad that I didn't have to take entry exams like those in Japan (although I have written my share of "entry" exams like the SAT, MCAT and GREs). I get the feeling that the exams would be akin to the specific GRE exams over here only for college entry rather than Graduate school. Definitely not a lot of fun. What a way to start the exam season though. Not only does Godai have to deal with the everyday rowdiness and distractions of Ikkoku-kan, he also has the wonders of a blackout to deal with. Little wonder that Yotsuya said Migoto ni subetta when Godai left for his exams and ended up sliding down the road. Rather graphic concept of what was to happen on the exam really. I find the constant interaction between word-play and graphic depiction very amusing and keeps things moving nicely. - JYN

[ café rating ]

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

[ café trivia ]

[ << prev ] [ top ] [ next >> ]

[ home ] [ what's new ] [ café contest ] [ café reviews ] [ parent's guide ] [ encyclopædia ]
[ café trivia ] [ café latté ] [ café espresso ] [ about the café ] [ feedback ] [ links ] [ site map ]

© 1997-2000. All rights reserved. The Animé Café logo and the Crystal Kyoko award are original creations of the Animé Café. Please do not use any of the materials on this site without the expressed written permission of the Animé Café.

Page last modified 1999.03.15