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Fairy Tail: Collection Three
To those who are not familiar with Fairy Tail, I'll clue you in. Fairy Tail is easily one of the most popular anime/manga currently available on the market... It's a series that revolves around the lives and travels of a group of young wizards from the Fairy Tail guild. The show has a plethora of great characters, fun story arcs and not a whole lot of filler with solid writing. Fairy Tail balances humor, fantasy, and action flawlessly. This set contains episodes 49-72, and showcases exactly why the series has won over so many with its great action and excellent characters!
In the same vain as the previous box sets, this collection of Fairy Tail episodes is broken up into various small arcs with one big story. The first 3 episodes of this box set is geared toward building Lucy's character and giving her some more development. The first has Cana telling Lucy that she's going to have a fateful encounter with a reporter who asks her to show him around Magnolia. The second, one of my favorite episodes on the set, revolves around a love potion gone wrong, that when drank, makes you fall in love with the first person you lock eyes with, and the third gets heavy when Lucy comes face to face with the father who neglected her for years, and caused her to run away.
After these solid character building episodes, the majority of the last 21 episodes on the set delves into the evil guild, Oracion Sais. We're told the goal of this dark guild is to retrieve "Nirvana", a dark magic which is capable of turning good into evil. The Fairy Tail guild quickly realize if the Oracion Sais obtain Nirvana, they could turn members of guilds against each other and bring total chaos to the world. To stop them, Fairy Tail dispatches Natsu, Erza, Gray, and Lucy to team up with various members of other guilds in Magnolia to take down the Oracion Sais before they can accomplish their goal.
The final 4-5 episodes of the box set is a collection of anime only episodes, better known as filler, a dreaded word for fans of shonen anime, and yes, they're painful to watch. In this filler arc, referred to as the Daphne arch, Natsu hears a rumor of a woman named Daphne who has claimed she has met a dragon. Hoping the dragon is Igneel, Natsu sets off to find out if there is any legitimacy to these claims.
While this box set delivers on high octane action and some nice character development for certain characters, the highlight of this collection of episodes is that we meet two new prominent character going forward by the names of Wendy and Carla. Wendy, much like Natsu, is a form of dragon slayer, she is sent by the Cait Shelter guild to help Fairy Tail combat the Oracion Sais, when we first meet her, she seems to have a mysterious connection to Fairy Tail's on again-off again member, Mystogan/Jellal. Along with Wendy, is the much more serious Carla, who once again paralleling Natsu, resembles his travelling companion, Happy.
49. The Day of the Fateful Encounter.
50. Special Request: Watch Out For the Guy You Like.
51. Love and Lucky
52. Allied Forces, Assemble!
53. Enter the Oracion Sais.
54. Maiden of the Sky
55. The Girl and the Ghost
56. Dead Grand Prix
58. Celestial Skirmish
59. Jellal of Days Gone By.
60. March of Destruction
61. Super Aerial Assault: Natsu vs Cobra!
62. Wizard Saint Jura
63. Your Words
65. From Pegasus to Fairies.
66. The Power of Feelings
67. I'm With You
68. A Guild for One
69. Call of the Dragon
70. Natsu vs Gray!!
71. A Friendship Overcomes the Dead
72. Fairy Tail Wizard
+ Character development for Lucy, Jellal, and new characters Wendy and Carla.
+ Fantastic over arching storyline with the Oracion Sais.
+ The action is as exciting as ever.
- The Daphne filler arc is tedious.
Video and Audio:
Fairy Tail has always had a lot of bright, vibrant colors that look great and stand out well, so this set is no different. I did notice some banding issues at some points in this set, but they're almost non existent to really take away from the overall look. The series were not meant to be viewed in High Definition due to the limitation of Standard Definition. FUNimation's upscale is solid though.
As for Audio... Again, no different from previous sets. We're given 2 audio tracks, the TrueHD English 5.1 and the TrueHD Japanese 2.0 Stereo track. As usual, I watched the English dub, and as I already stated they deliver great work. The English 5.1 track works well while avoiding any problems such as dropouts or distortions during playback.
- Episode 49 commentary with Tyler Walker, Todd Haberkorn, Cherami Leigh, and Carl Phillips.
- Episode 58 commentary with Tyler Walker, Aaron Dismuke, Lindsay Seidel, and Cherami Leigh.
- Episode 64 commentary with Tyler Walker, Micah Solusod, and Philip Weber.
- Episode 70 commentary with Tyler Walker, Todd Haberkorn, and Gwendolyn Lau.
- US trailer for the dub.
- Textless opening and closing themes.
Fairy Tail continues to impress with this third collection of episodes with its exciting action, fun stories, and fantastic characters. One thing I've always enjoyed about this show is its focus on giving their lead and secondary characters plenty of development, and this set is no exception, giving up plenty of background on Lucy and Jellal, while also introducing us to two new major characters. While the collection ends more on a weaker note thanks to the Daphne arc, the collection as a whole is a ton of fun. Recommended