Viz has released the second volume of Hunter
X Hunter, an anime series
based on a manga series created by Yoshiro Togashi, the man behind Yu Yu
Hakusho. Just as fun and lively as
first set, these shows enjoyable for otaku of all ages.
The program actually advances quite a bit in
this set of 15 shows, bringing the Hunter exam to a conclusion. Not only do we get to see who passes the
exam, but also who fails.
Gon is a young 10-year-old orphan living with his aunt.
He's always been a bit of a loner and spends
most of his time exploring the wilderness around his house. One afternoon Gon gets into some trouble and
is rescued by a "Humter" named Kite. They
start talking, and Gon discovers to his
amazement that not only is his father still alive, but he's one of the
hunters ever, Ging Freecss. Kite also
Gon about the yearly test that has to be passed in order to become a
vague title that is never defined very well...) and the young boy decides
he's going to become one of these licensed adventurers and find his
Armed only with his father's fishing pole (an object that he
employs to snag treasures, tie up baddies and even to catch fish) and
innate ability to talk with animals, the kid leaves home to become a
Gon soon meets a few friends. Among them
are Leorio, a well-dressed man wanna-be
Hunter with some medical background and, Kurapika, a young boy who is
driven to become a Hunter. They're
joined by Killua, a quite boy who comes from a family of assassins. Together they all start to take the Hunter
As we left our group last time they were in the middle of
the third test, finding their way to the bottom of an immense tower in
hours. Their first confrontation inside
the tower nearly derails their hopes as they loose 50 hours as a
penalty. With only a few hours remaining
and a long
way to go, they group starts fighting amongst themselves when they can
afford it. It's only Gon's quick
thinking that allows them to advance.
There's several trial still left however. They're
next left on an old battleship that
has been turned into a luxury hotel. It
seems as if they're going to have some time to rest and relax, until
discover that a storm is headed their way that will totally destroy the
ship and everyone on it. Everyone will
have to work together if anyone is going to survive.
The next round is just the opposite, pitting each would-be
Hunter against the other applicants. In
this challenge everyone's badge is the prize.
Your own badge is worth 3 points, you're given a target and
is worth 3 points, and every other badge is worth 1 point.
At the end of a week left on a deserted
island, whoever gathers 6 points advances to the next, and final, round.
The Hunter exam finished up in this set, which was a nice
surprise. I thought for sure that they'd
prolong it at least another half dozen episodes. As
it is the test wraps up rather nicely
without too much padding. (Though there
is a little of course.)
This show is still very enjoyable, even though it's aimed at
kids. Yes, there are some typical Shonen
Jump-style aspects to the program, Gon's refusal to give up the chief
them. It's still different enough to
keep your curiosity piqued though. The
battles are relatively short (unlike Yu
Yu Hakusho or Dragon Ball Z
battle can last several episodes) and the characters have a bit more
personality than your average kids show.
While there isn't as much imagination as in One Piece, the
come up with some nice plots and twists and the fun characters take
care of the
These next 15 episodes are presented on three discs that
come in a fold out book housed in a nice attractive slipcase.
This show comes with the original Japanese audio track or an
English dub, both in stereo. I
alternated tracks as I often do for the first few episodes and found
languages to be very good. The actors on
both sides of the Pacific did a good job bringing the characters to
making the show fun. There wasn't any
distortion or other common defects.
The full frame image looked good but not outstanding.
The lines were tight and the detail fine, but
the colors were a bit muted in parts and there were a couple of spots
print. There was a slight amount of
digital noise in some scenes but it was never distracting.
Overall a nice looking image, just not
There isn't much in the way of extras. The
set also comes with some storyboards, a
few trailers and some manga pages.
While this is still aimed at younger audiences, I found the
show a lot of fun. Gon's positive
attitude is infectious and the wide assortment of characters are fun
enjoyable. No, it's not deep or
meaningful, but if you want some fun, mindless entertainment this is
the doctor ordered. It earns a high