Nadia Vol. #02 (Mania.com)

By:Roman Martel
Review Date: Saturday, February 16, 2002
Release Date: Tuesday, August 14, 2001



The Review!
Overall Rating: 4
(on a scale of 1-5)

-Technical Ratings-
Sound: 5
Picture: 5
Menu: 4
Presentation: 4
Goodies: 4
Overall: 4.4

-Content Ratings-
Animation: 5
Sound: 4
Plot: 3
English Acting: 3
Music: 4
Entertainment: 3
Overall: 3.7

-Intro-

The first disc of Nadia really showed some promise, but things go a bit downhill in this round of episodes. But hey it's all in the name of introducing the baddies and getting things established, so I'm not condemning it yet. There's still a strong spirit of fun and adventure in this disc of Nadia

-Technical Review-

Things remain exactly the same in the technical department. You've got great sound and picture on this disc. The menu is quick and well done (the opening song plays during all the selections and that gets a bit annoying). The keepcase has all the information it except volume number and number of channels of sound used. The cover features the characters in peril and has Grandis and her goons in the front in various poses of cool. You get opening and ending animation as well as a trailer for the next disc as extras. Still a pretty decent technical release when it's all said and done.

-Content Review-

Nadia takes a bit of a departure from it's tone in these episodes. Things get a bit grimer, and they also become more action oriented. As a result the characters who made this series such fun aren't really allowed to interact too much. But you do get to meet the sinister villain of the series and see that he's got a bone to pick with good ole Nemo, as well as Nadia and her pals.

Jean, Nadia and King are on their way to the island Electra spoke of in the last episode. Well, guess what? Grandis and her two henchmen are there. Not only that but a group of hooded nasties are also there and they've got a secret to hide. They blast Jean's new flying machine down and capture Grandis and her buds. Jean and Nadia find a young girl named Marie. Her parents have been slain by the hooded men and our heroes take her as their newest companion. What follows is the systematic capture of the remaining characters. In the end it's up to Jean to join forces with Grandis and Co, and try to save Nadia, King and Marie from a gentlemen who seems bent on destroying the Nautilus as well as take over (or destroy) the world with his giant super weapon!

The animation and sound remain pretty much the same. Everything is pretty bright and happy most of the time. There is a bit more darkness to the animation, but it fits the dark turn the story takes. I'm still not too crazy about some the design for the incredible technology of the hooded nasties as well as that of Captain Nemo. It just doesn't fit in with the time period and seems way too fancy. It's not an 1800's version of high-tech, it's a modern version of high tech. It's a minor gripe but it does pull me out of the story a bit. Other than that, everything keeps up it's high level of quality, in the visual and sound arenas.

Things go right down the path you expect them to go. The characters get entwined with a host of bad guys who make Grandis and her thugs look goofy by comparison (not that they needed any help really). We learn very quickly that these guys are really evil. Not only do they kill people or enslave them, but they are building a super weapon that can destroy whole masses of land! No, it's not Darth Vader, but pretty close, especially with the mask going. My biggest problem was that the characters didn't have much time to interact and most of the story was chase and escape without much dialogue. Jean gets to say "I wonder what those are?" about 100 times, but that doesn't count. Mostly these episodes introduce the villains and get Grandis and her boys a chance to team up with the rest of the gang. It's not a bad set of episodes but they seemed to on just a bit too long. The third episode, "The Tower of Babel" was the worst of the offenders.

The dub keeps its same rating. I really like the job the main kids are doing. They are holding their own and sometimes doing an even better job than the adult cast. I will say that the main villain seemed to either be really bored, or just playing the part way to casual. He came across like he was simply reading the lines and not into the part at all. I'm not sure if he was attempting so sound cold and calm. It didn't work. He really kept pulling me out of all the scenes he was in. It might have contributed to the episodes feeling stretched out and overly long. He has lots of dialogue in that third episode.

The music keeps the same score. Most of the score is pretty standard. It's good but nothing to write home about. I love the opening and end themes. I'll need to see if they are on a compilation somewhere.

The entertainment grade went down a bit with this disc. It was mostly due to the fact that it felt like I was watching about 100 minutes of anime. The third episode really dragged and I'm thinking the voice acting by the evil overlord might have had something to do with it. I'm hoping for the fun to return in the next disc and for things to start getting a little less cliche. This seems like it could be tons of fun, but I was a bit disappointed with the way the plot went this time around. I'll see what the next disc holds in store for me.

Roman J. Martel
Tell me what you think! E-mail me at...
roman@animeondvd.com



Review Equipment
Phillips Flatscreen (27 Inch), Sony Playstation 2



Mania Grade: NA
Audio Rating: N/A
Video Rating: N/A
Packaging Rating: N/A
Menus Rating: N/A
Extras Rating: N/A
Age Rating: 12 & Up
Region: 1 - North America
Released By: ADV Films
MSRP: 29.99
Running time: 100
Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
Disc Resolution: 480i/p (mixed/unknown)
Disc Encoding: MPEG-2
Series: Nadia, Secret of Blue Water