Urusei Yatsura TV Vol. #02 (of 50) (Mania.com)

By:Chris Beveridge
Review Date: Tuesday, February 05, 2002
Release Date: Friday, August 04, 2000



What They Say
Ataru runs away from home, and into the arms of Sakura, a Shinto sorceress. Alas, Sakura has her own ageda; the boys of Tomobiki High School suddenly become accident-prone when Sakura takes a job as School Nurse. Ataru tries to make a secret date with Shinoru and sneak around on Lum. A midnight mishap with mirrors unleashes an annoying devil, and Cherry's attempts at exorcism only multiply the problem. Ataru insulates himself from Lum's electric zaps, resulting in unexpected consequences. Lum starts playing around with alien voodoo dolls. Oyuki, Princess of Neptune, opens an interdimensional portal into Ataru's closet to dispose of excess snow. When Ataru "flies the unfriendly skies, "a midair mishap grounds the gang in the age of Dinosaurs! Episodes 5-8.

The Review!
More mischief and madness are included in the second volume of Urusei Yatsura, as well as an expanding cast!
The video is pretty close to the first disc, which means I'm still surprised at how good it looks, though there is still a bit of shiftiness to the backgrounds. Colors are spot on with no visible bleeding. Overall we're pretty pleased with how the disc looks, though it was fun to note some of the bits of animation that weren't visible before, such as how some of the moving images were linked together or repeated. While it's certainly not an outstanding transfer, it's definitely solid considering the age of the show and the materials. Fans will be pleased.

While the second disc to me isn't where the content is top notch, it's definitely continuing in setting things up. With such a large cast to introduce over time, it can take a bit for things to really get into swing.

The new character introduced in this disc is in the lovely form of Sakura, Cherry's niece. Being related to Cherry, she's a bit of an odd duck, though not in your typical way. She's completely stunning looking, she's intelligent and she can double as a priestess similar to Cherry. But she's forthright and doesn't take crap from anyone.

And, as things are bound to go, every male in the school is in love with her. After her initial encounter with Ataru where she managed to fill him with dozens of bad spirits, she makes her way to the Tomobiki school where she's now the new nurse. Ataru is now afraid of her after what she did to him (which completely baffles everyone else!) and avoids her like the plague. Everyone else though is doing anything they can to get themselves sent to the nurse; breaking bones, smashing fingers, cutting themselves and more.

Another of the episodes has a great bit where Cherry tries to help out Ataru. Since he's getting tired of being shocked, he asks Cherry to come up with something to inhibit her powers. Being the mad monk that he is, he comes up with a ribbon that will do just that. Once she wears the ribbon (her first gift from Ataru no less!), Lum endures powerless life with amusing results. Her bunnyhop down the street trying to fly is hilarious.

One of my favorite early episodes though is the one with the voodoo dolls. Lum creates one of Ataru to try and tame him a bit, but it all goes afoul when she teaches him how to make those dolls himself. The next thing she knows, there's dozens and dozens of people he wants to get back at and the desk is littered with them. He runs out grab a piece needed to get one of Shinobu completed, and this is where things really start to get good.

His parents find the dolls. Not knowing any better, they start playing with them, causing the real people to be flung all over the place, fight with each other and do other sorts of insane things. Some great bits there.

Also introduced in these episodes is Oyuki from Neptune (which is conveniently located just inside Ataru's closet). After discovering this entrance, Ataru and several... friends, end up on Neptune. Ataru of course drools over the babe that Oyuki is, only to learn that she's Lum's friend. Male slavery ensues...

While disc two improves in content, it's still not at a point where I'd consider it to be the great show it can be. It's coming along nicely though!

Features
Japanese Language,English Subtitles

Review Equipment
Toshiba CF36H50 36" TV, Pioneer 414 codefree DVD player, Sony STR-DE835 DD/DTS receiver, Monster S-Video cable and Sony speakers.



Mania Grade: A-
Audio Rating: B+
Video Rating: B+
Packaging Rating: A-
Menus Rating: B
Extras Rating: N/A
Age Rating: 12 & Up
Region: 1 - North America
Released By: AnimEigo
MSRP: 29.99
Running time: 100
Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
Disc Resolution: 480i/p (mixed/unknown)
Disc Encoding: MPEG-2
Series: Urusei Yatsura