I'm Gonna Be An Angel Vol. #2 - Mania.com



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Info:

  • 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: Synch-Point
  • MSRP: 29.98
  • Running time: 100
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Disc Resolution: 480i/p (mixed/unknown)
  • Disc Encoding: MPEG-2
  • Series: I'm Gonna Be An Angel

I'm Gonna Be An Angel Vol. #2

By Chris Beveridge     March 14, 2004
Release Date: March 30, 2004


I'm Gonna Be An Angel Vol. #2
© Synch-Point


What They Say
So...I?ll Show You I Can Fly!
Noelle is trying her hardest to become an angel for her "husband" Yuusuke. Even when she and her family take over his house and things get crazy, Yuusuke just can?t leave Noelle on her own. The Monster World Agent, Miruru, does this and that to pull those two apart.



Step 6 - "Wings of the Heart, Stuff Like That"
Angels can fly, so Noelle gets carried away with her flying practices. Mikael hints mysteriously that "To smile is what is important," but Noelle doesn't have a clue to what it means. Then, the sight of Natsumi high diving catches her eye. She gets so excited by the beauty of it that she tries to get Natsumi to teach her how to dive.



Step 7-"A Bond that's Really Strong"
Yuusuke receives a package at his house. Inside, they find a girl-squid claiming to be Noelle. The somewhat confused family takes the girl squid in. But, it turns out that she was an agent sent by Miruru! Their goal is to separate Noelle from her family. In order to get Noelle to leave her family, the girl squid approaches Noelle while Miruru approaches Yuusuke. What does Miruru have in mind anyway!



Step 8-"I Wanna See You, but it Hurts"
Once again Lucca comes up with a crazy invention. Its name is Hyper Tengu Robo. It?s a huge robot that?s controlled by wearing a suit. Wanting to try it out, the entire family fights over the control suit. But in the end, it falls into Noelle?s hands. While she absorbs herself into her training, the Daruma tank?s wife appears. Having her husband defeated in Step 1, she comes to Noelle burning with vengeance.

Step 9-"No Doesn't Always Mean No"
Since Noelle and Yuusuke are living together, they might as well be married. So let?s just get things going! Noelle's family get hyped up to advance the two's relationship. However, Grandmother alone is against it saying, "A human husband will only lead to unhappiness." Papa takes care of Grandmother and continues with the marriage plans. Grandmother gets furious and cooperates with Miruru to teach them a lesson, but things get a little out of hand.



The Review!
After a two year hiatus between volumes, the series continues on with four more episodes of strange silliness that proves humans and monsters have a hard time living together.

Audio:
For our primary viewing session, we listened to this disc in its English dubbed format. The show features a good sounding pro-logic track that mostly pushes some of the music to the rear speakers during the opening and throughout the show. The dialogue and ambient sound effects are mostly centered at the forward soundstage and sound good. We didn't notice any dropouts or distortions on either track.

Video:
Originally airing in the spring and summer of 1999, the show features some solid looking animation while avoiding that more common digital look shows started to seriously sport around that time. The shows colors look fantastic without being over saturated. Some sequences look a bit soft, but that feels more to be by design going by the color palette chosen for most of the show than an actual transfer issue. Some of the dark blue backgrounds have a bit of macroblocking in them, but the only other problem I noted was the cross coloration showing up in some medium range character shots and a number of close-ups with characters hair. The main reason for the downgrade over this release and the first one is the use of hard subtitles in a few scenes, something that I was surprised to see Synch-Point doing. In 2002, it would have been annoying and complained about, but in 2004 it's just something that's barely done at all anymore.

Packaging:
The front cover gives Sara the spotlight this time around with a night time shot of her bandages coming undone in the breeze, revealing some nice naked fanservice all set against the glow of the moon and the reflection in the waves. This is a really good-looking piece of artwork. The back cover features several bright animation shots and a brief summary of what to expect. Episode numbers and titles are included as well as production information and the discs features and extras. All the information you need about this disc is very easy to check out here. The reverse side front cover, sporting the original series name of Tenshi ni Natrumon!, provides a very cute image of Noelle with her wings getting the hang of them while Lucca finishes some of the details behind it. The reverse back cover features even more animation shots, and the other information all rearranged with the exception of the extras and languages. This is a great cover. The insert features the same shot as the front cover with the same amount of logos unfortunately. The insert opens up to provide translations notes for these episodes. Other than one other panel providing chapter listings, the remainder of the panels are advertisements for their manga or other anime releases.

Menu:
A nice soft looking main menu features Sara in her regular outfit while animated feathers fall across the screen to some nice music. Selections are listed along the right and are set up pretty much as you'd expect them to be. Access times are nice and fast and moving around simple.

Extras:
The extras are fairly weak compared to the first volume. The usual array of items, such as the image gallery and some storyboard examples are here. The Japanese titled screens are presented here as well for areas such as the eye-catches, next episode previews and so forth.

Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
With the two year gap between the volumes, I was surprised at how fairly easy it was to get back into this show. While the humor still hasn't completely captured us, we did get some laughs out of it like before. The main problem we had was in trying to remember the character names more than anything else.

This installment brings us one less episode than originally planned, which partly helped make this a bit more enjoyable for us since it was as overwhelming in one sitting. The premise is essentially the same though, as each episode stands alone and has something strange happening to either a family member or Yusuke gets caught up in something until the series villain has his minions stir up even more trouble in his goal to acquire Noelle. Ones enjoyment of this really comes down to how much you like the out of left field kind of comedy and weirdness factor in your shows.

There's some good material in here though. With Noelle continuing her determination to become an angel after overhearing Yusuke call Natsumi that, she lets Lucca come up with a contraption that makes her look more like a bird than anything else so that she can fly. This goes over poorly of course since Lucca's inventions are a real mixed bag most of the time. Since it doesn't work well, this brings more introspection from Yusuke in trying to understand what Noelle is up to while Noelle decides that she'll follow Natsumi around to try and understand her since she considers her an angel based on what Yusuke's said. Natsumi's distaste for Noelle continues pretty strongly throughout a lot of their encounters since she looks on Noelle as pure competition. There's a lot of fun moments between the two as they interact more and more here.

One of the plans to separate Noelle from the family comes across in a truly strange way but fitting enough for this show; a new Noelle shows up in the form of a squid girl. Using cunning logic on this hapless family of monsters, she postulates that since none of the family members are truly related by blood that she can just as easily claim to be a family member, and her name just happens to be Noelle. Other than Yusuke who seems vaguely disinterested in all of this, everyone falls for the plot including Noelle, at least until she realizes she's being pushed out and just tries to make it on her own. The squid-Noelle made this episode a heck of a lot of fun and it did some good towards building a relationship between Noelle and Yusuke a bit more.

The giant goofy robot with tentacles for controls on the inside just hurts my brain.

The best episode on this volume for just plain fun comedy is the last episode, which after something of a small family fight, Granny finds herself on the outs. She ends up hooking up with this ukulele playing monster name Uk-kun or something. Hatching a plan for revenge, she uses him and gets him inside the house where when he plays his ukulele, it turns the listener into a frog version of themselves. So as he and his addictive yet annoying music move throughout the house, more and more family members get turned into such cute frogs, all colored similar to their original skin colors. The way this plays out as revenge gone wrong is just simply comical and fun with everyone trying to deal with the problem while being cute frogs.

In Summary:
With two years between the releases, this release shows that Synch-Point hasn't forgotten the good things that they needed to do, though I still really dislike the hard subtitled areas, especially after they removed the fan-friendly subtitle track. The materials for this look good but not problem free and I still find the dub to be quite enjoyable. But my tolerance level for this kind of show is fairly low, making taking in all four episodes in one sitting almost headache inducing. Hopefully now that this volume is out we'll see the remainder fairly quickly and get on towards some of the better episodes in the series.

Features
Japanese Language,English Language,English Subtitles,Translation notes,Reversible cover


Review Equipment
Panasonic PT50LC13 50" LCD RP HDTV, Panasonic RP-82 Progressive Scan codefree DVD player, Sony STR-DE835 DD/DTS receiver, Monster component cable and Panasonic SB-TP20S Multi-Channel Speaker System With 100-Watt Subwoofer.

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