Nadia Vol. #09 (of 10) (

By:Chris Beveridge
Review Date: Monday, May 27, 2002
Release Date: Tuesday, June 04, 2002

What They Say
With King the lion cub in the evil clutches of Grandis' former
love, it will take everything Nadia and the rest of her friends have to save
him! But something sinister awaits our adventurers as they finally draw
near to Nadia's homeland. Dark forces from the past pursue them, while the
last pieces of Nadia's heritage come together. Will her fate doom them all?
Or is there someone that can save them? Find out as Nadia's magical
adventure approaches its ultimate conclusion in Nadia: The Secret of Blue
Water- Nadia in Love!

The Review!
The penultimate installment in this series release has one of those mixes of episodes, two bad ones and two good ones. Thankfully the good ones manage to outweigh the bad ones, but only barely.

For our primary viewing session, we listened to this disc in its original language of Japanese. Being an older show, its stereo track sounds more like a mono one but a good one. Dialogue is definitely center channel based with music making decent use of the left/right speakers, along with the sound effects, to give the show a full forward soundstage feeling. Listening to both tracks, we didn't notice any dropouts or other distortions.

The transfer for these episodes are pretty decent, managing to look much like the previous volume overall. The first episode has a number of scenes with dirt and scratches, but the remaining episodes tend to look better overall. Cross coloration and aliasing is pretty minimal. Colors looked good and things in general look decent.

The standard look of the series appears here again with the clear logo and the center placed image, this one an aerial shot of some high-tech ships in combat above the water. The back cover shows off a few animation shots as well as a good summary of the episodes. Episode numbers and titles are also listed and the discs features and production information is clearly listed. The insert provides another shot of the front cover while the reverse side just has more boxart for other titles.

The menus follow the simple is best method here, with the main screen being an image of the characters while the opening song plays along. Everything's laid out in a simple and straightforward manner and the access times are pretty quick. We had no problems at all with this layout.

There’s only two extras included with this volume, the first being the text interview with the English voice actor for Jean, which has some interesting bits in it, while the second one is just the preview for the next volume.

Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
What a mixed bag of episodes. The first one barely held our interest at all, as it brings the saga of the African tribe and King’s trespass to a close. Honestly, even after watching it twice, I couldn’t remember anything worth talking about it.

The second episode became the dreaded recap episode with some flair thrown in, since this is where the series actually begins to pick up where it left off. You remember, back at the good point about thirteen episodes ago. Each of the main characters gets to do a recap of sorts of where things in the series are in their own eyes, but using the existing animation. When each character gets their segment, they get to do it in musical form and sing about it. This translates fairly well into English, which I flipped back and forth between. There’s new animation mixed in, but overall it doesn’t do much to advance things, and the singing may cause some peoples ears to bleed.

But after that, things move forward pretty fast, as Nadia and everyone on board the Gratan continue their journey into the deep dark black unknown of Africa, as presented on the map. Their journey lands them just along the interior rim of a water filled crater, where Nadia’s Blue Water begins to take over, causing the water to part and dragging the Gratan and Nadia into it. This all eventually leads deep down underground where we discover another Ark, much like the Island where everyone stayed for awhile. Everything is very much in ruins, but Nadia finds herself able to manipulate everything inside, and a rush of new knowledge seems to surface.

This lets all sorts of revelations become known, such as the origins of the Atlantean’s, their plans to escape a cataclysm and Nadia’s own heritage. There’s a lot more as well, but with so little good episode material in the disc in total, it’s like talking about the last 15 minutes or so of it. Some of it does feel rushed and forced, especially the origins revelation, but they left themselves little choice with the pacing after ironing in all those bad episodes.

Nadia’s been a very uneven ride, and this disc is what the entire series has felt like to us so far: a mixed bag. When it’s good, it’s very good, but when it’s bad… it’s almost unwatchable.

Japanese Language,English Language,English Subtitles,Interview with Nathan Parsons (Jean)

Review Equipment
Toshiba TW40X81 40" HDTV, Skyworth 1050P Progressive Scan codefree DVD player, Sony STR-DE835 DD/DTS receiver, Monster component cable and Sony speakers.

Mania Grade: B-
Audio Rating: B+
Video Rating: B
Packaging Rating: A-
Menus Rating: B+
Extras Rating: B
Age Rating: 12 & Up
Region: 1 - North America
Released By: ADV Films
MSRP: 29.98
Running time: 100
Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
Disc Resolution: 480i/p (mixed/unknown)
Disc Encoding: MPEG-2
Series: Nadia, Secret of Blue Water