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Sister Princess Vol 7
Wataru finally gets off Promised Island and back to Tokyo in volume seven of Sister Princess, the last disc in the series. While the show started out with a lot of promise, it never really lived up to its potential and this volume ends the show on a low note.
Poor Wataru. He was the best student in his class, but due to a computer error reading his test, he fails his entrance exam to high school. Going home depressed, his butler informs him that he's been admitted to a high school he's never heard of that is on a mysterious island. Before he knows it, he's thrown in the back of a truck, dropped off at a wharf, and ferried across the sea to Promised Island. Things start looking up there as he encounters several good looking girls who all seem interested in him. However his luck turns sour again when he finds out that all of these women are his sisters! They often drive him crazy, and he sometimes has to remind himself that these lovely girls are his sisters, but Wataru ends up enjoying living with his numerous sisters.
Wataru's best friend, Akio, is visiting from Tokyo as this last volume opens. Akio has some interesting news for his friend: Wataru HAS been accepted to the high school he wanted to get into. They discovered the computer error and have granted him admission.
Wataru has mixed feelings about this. He's finally achieved his goal, but in the year since he's come to Promised Island, he's grown fond of his 12 sisters. He's not sure if he's going to go back to Tokyo, but Akio keeps pushing him to go. In the end he decides to leave, which devastates his sisters. Once he's in Tokyo, will he be as happy as he thought, or even as happy as when he was on the island?
The plot with Akio was a little odd. There were definite homosexual overtones, with Akio always touching and holding Wataru, that I didn't think fit in with the show very well. They also dragged this ending story out a lot. It went on for four episodes, though the tale could have been told in two ro three. There were way too many scenes of the sisters looking off into the sky and wishing that Wataru would return.
The show wasn't wrapped up as well as I was hoping it would be either. They explanation for the whole series; why he was sent to the island, why he didn't know about his sisters, why Mami was spying on him, all of the answers to these questions turned out to be really lame. Afterwards I was thinking "I watched seven DVDs for this?"
I really enjoy harem shows. Tenchi, Love, Hina, Happy Lesson are all really enjoyable shows in this anime genre. I had really high hopes for this show too, but it just turned out to be really, really stupid. There was some plot development in the first couple of shows and in the last one, but the rest was just filler. I wouldn't mind that if the filler episodes were entertaining, but they really weren't. After a couple of volumes the show falls into a rut and the episodes all have the same plot.
The laughs were few and far between too. For a comedy show I was expecting more humor in the scripts. The humor is too gentle and just doesn't work very well. The programs also have a sameness to them. The sisters fawn over their brother, spending all of their time thinking of new ways to please him. There isn't really much to these episodes.
The fact that all of the sisters just adore Wataru gets a little dull after a while. In most other 'harem' shows the women either fight with each other, or with the single male. In this program, no one fights at all. The sisters all get along with each other and the fall over each other to be nice to Wataru. The biggest goal in their lives is to make him happy. Besides being unrealistic, this lack of conflict and extreme admiration of Wataru makes the show pretty dull.
This DVD contains three episodes and comes in a clear keepcase with a reversible cover and an insert. The insert has a letter from Hina to her big brother and a series of images of all the females from the series.
This DVD comes with the original Japanese track in stereo, and a 5.1 English dub. I watched the show in the original language, since the English dub for this series really bugs me. The dub was hard to take after a while. The two youngest sisters have high pitched squeaky voices that really grated on my nerves. Several of the sisters have foreign accents, and these sounded fake in the dub track. Since I don't speak Japanese the accents didn't bother me in the Japanese track.
The sound quality was very good in both tracks. There wasn't a lot of use made of the sound stage in either track, though incidental music and some effects were thrown to the rear speakers in the English track. In any case, they both sounded clear without any hiss or distortion.
The full frame video looks pretty good overall. The image was a little soft, with the lines being not quite as sharp and defined as they should be. This wasn't a big deal though. Aliasing and other video defects were evident, but not bothersome. The colors were bright and full, but they did chose some odd hues for some things. At sundown they put an orange hue over the whole picture and colored the sky purple. This just made everything look strange. This wasn't a problem with the transfer though, the show was certainly created this way.
This disc includes a clean opening and closing, along with an eighteen-minute behind the scenes interview with the whole cast where they talk about the show, their acting, and their favorite characters.
When all was said and done, this show wasn't funny, or very entertaining. It was like an episode of Tom and Jerry that was done in the 70's where the cat and mouse were friends. Everyone spent the show trying to be as nice as possible to each other. *yawn*
I thought the show ended on a low note. The answers to the questions that were raised through the course of the show turned out to be pretty lame too. If you've watched the show up to now, it's worth seeing how everything wraps up, even though it's a little disappointing. For people who've stuck with the show this far, the disc is worth a rental, but just barely.