Chiyo-chan finishes her first year in high school and starts her second
in this third volume of Azumanga Daioh. More hilarity ensues
now that the young student becomes a senior.
As the volume opens, the first year is ending, and the students are
wondering if they will all be together in the next year. Chiyo
is sure that they will be, but Osaka isn't so confident. As luck
would have it, all the main characters are in the same class, being taught
by Ms. Yukari once more.
In addition to the main first year students, the athletic Kagura joins
Ms. Yukari's second year class. She is constantly trying to best
Sakaki in some competition, but even though Sakaki isn't that interesting
in winning, she always does. Watching Kagura get more and more frantic
as she continues to lose is quite amusing.
One episode that was very good had Chiyo narrating what her day was
like from rising till bed time. It was both funny and charming.
The episode were exams were coming up and some of the students were
panicking was priceless. The worst students joined together to study,
and their efforts were hilarious. A great episode.
The more you watch of this series, the funnier it gets. Some of the
running gags are hilarious. After 10 or so episodes, Sakaki's attempts
to pet a cat, any cat, are outrageously funny. I laughed out loud
when she went to "the road were cats gather." The regular jokes seem
stronger in this volume too. The reason Ms. Yukari was late to school
was classic. This is turning into a series that I really look forward
to. Each volume tops the previous one.
This DVD contains a generous five episodes of Azumanga Daioh in a clear
Amaray case with a reversible cover.
Like the previous volumes, this DVD offers the choice of the original
Japanese language track in stereo or a 5.1 English dub. The 5.1 English
track was more enveloping than the Japanese track, but I preferred the
original language track. The female voices in the dub were all high
pitched and squeaky. Osaka's voice was done with a fake southern accent
that sounded really dumb. I greatly preferred the Japanese track that was
clean and clear with no hiss or audio distortion.
Being a recent production, the full frame video looked pretty good.
The lines were tight and sharp, and the colors clear. There was some minor
aliasing, with the diagonal lines having a stair step effect, but this
is common with animated shows. The colors were a little muted, but I think
that this was the creator's intent. A fine looking disc with only minimal
In addition to the extras on the DVD itself, ADV has included a cloisonne
lapel pin. The pin depicts two cats, a smaller one sitting on the
larger one's head, a "Neco Conneco" a constant theme in this volume.
I really like bonus items like this. The pin is very cool.
The clear case comes with a reversible cover, and there is a 12-page
booklet enclosed. The booklet had comments on each episode by various people
who worked on the show. It also contained explanations of the various cultural
references in the series that western audiences may not understand. This
was especially helpful in explaining some of the more obscure jokes.
It's educational too. I didn't know that you have to bring you own
toilet paper when using public toilets in Japan. That knowledge could
come in handy some day!
The DVD itself includes a clean opening and closing, and a two-minute
reel of production sketches.
The trailers on this disc are for Wedding
Witch Komugi, Grrl
Power, and Panyo
Panyo Di Gi Charat.
This series keeps on improving the longer it goes on. This volume
was my favorite so far. All of the shows were funny, and the running
gags just added to the fun. The fact that this DVD has five episodes
and a free pin is icing on the cake. Highly Recommended.