Imma Youjo: The Erotic Temptress Vol. #5 -

Anime/Manga Reviews

Mania Grade: C

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  • Audio Rating: B+
  • Video Rating: B-
  • Packaging Rating: B+
  • Menus Rating: B
  • Extras Rating: C+
  • Age Rating: 18 & Up
  • Region: 1 - North America
  • Released By: Critical Mass Video
  • MSRP: 29.98
  • Running time: 45
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Disc Resolution: 480i/p (mixed/unknown)
  • Disc Encoding: MPEG-2
  • Series: Imma Youjo

Imma Youjo: The Erotic Temptress Vol. #5

By Chris Beveridge     January 22, 2008
Release Date: January 29, 2008

Imma Youjo: The Erotic Temptress Vol. #5
© Critical Mass Video

What They Say
Maya: unspeakably beautiful, her body drives men insane with desire. To touch her sensuous curves is to experience true ecstasy...

Taking a job as a maid at a wealthy man's estate, Maya expected to be cleaning priceless collections; she never expected to become part of one! Now she's part of a world where the ultra-wealthy throw secret, extravagant masquerade parties so they can indulge in every manner of pleasure imaginable. Parties where voyeurs can watch as private "collections" of beautiful women face off in contests using every possible form of sex and S&M. How will Maya fare as its newest participant?

The Review!
A more modern tale here revolving around the drudgery of being a maid in a big mansion with hardly anything to do. Well, until she GOES BEHIND THE DOOR THEY TELL HER NOT TO GO BEHIND! Silly girl.

The original release of this series was monolingual so this one gets a nice bump up by including a new English language adaptation. Both tracks are your basic stereo mixes encoded at 192 kbps so there isn't exactly a lot to work with here. Both tracks are decent sounding forward soundstage mixes which come across as clean and clear but we're not exactly talking much in terms of directionality and placement. The full sounding mix gets the job done and is free from dropouts and distortions during regular playback.

Originally released in 1994, the transfer for this release is presented in its original full frame aspect ratio. Seeing this show back when it first came to DVD, it was like a revelation in comparison to the darker and murkier VHS copy I had. Now some seven years later, things aren't quite the same but this is still a solid release of material that's fairly old with a tiny budget. The bitrate for the forty-nine minute feature is routinely in the fours and fives with peaks going higher and overall it looks good but still has issues. The source material is what it is which means there's some noisy backgrounds at times and some cross coloration as well. These elements don't overwhelm the show thankfully but in combination with some speckling and a few more visible areas from the cel based animation itself, it feels out of place in comparison to so many digital shows put out these days.

Utilizing the same artwork as the original release, a few key changes have been made. The warning borders have been removed entirely which helps the overall layout and the edges in general have been darkened up to give it a more sinister feel. The design here really provides something a bit more classic looking and not quite as rough and raw as the previous versions. The heavy blacks around the edges and the logo go a long way towards making this look good. The back cover uses a lot of black space as well with a few shots mixed in around it and a simple summary in white text. The discs features are minimal and to my surprises there aren't any production credits to be found which leaves a big gap along the bottom. The technical grid gets everything else across clearly and cleanly. No insert is included nor is there a reversible cover.

The static menu design takes its cues from the cover art and brings it here with the addition of a navigation strip along the bottom along with some basic yet decent framing. Tied to a bit of music, the overall effect is decent enough as the character artwork looks nicely detailed here with some great colors. Access times are nice and fast and the layout is simple and easy to navigate. As seems to be the case with just about every Critical Mass title, the disc correctly read our players' language presets and played accordingly.

The extras for this first volume aren't all that surprising in that there isn't much here. The inclusion of the original US trailer and a preview for the fifth volume is pretty standard and we do get a new round of outtakes, which sadly only runs for ten seconds. There must not have been much flubbing going on with this one, or flubs that could actually be used..

Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
At the time that Imma Youjo came out on DVD, there wasn't all that much adult material out there though it was really starting to hit more regularly. Seven years later, well, you can see just how much makes it out there each month. One of the things that Critical Mass has been doing with the number of titles from years ago that they're bringing back is to create a new English language dub for it. With this series being one that never had a dub, it makes out quite good by this and gives the show a new life and a new audience.

Much like the fourth installment in the series, something about this one just doesn't do much for me. Maya, now a nice raven black haired girl, takes the great job of being a maid in a really big mansion that doesn't have much going on inside. Well, at least in the mansion proper. In one of the dark rooms off of the wine cellar however, the houses owner is building his collection. This collection, one of those kinds that the rich play at, is women who will do anything sexually for their master. Often the collections are sold off to others who aren't able to "create" such things, giving the owners money and prestige as well as a chance to create yet another collection.

Naturally, Maya and the other maid end up becoming part of the collection and used to help raise their masters' prestige. The other maid, Tomoka, doesn't go over all that well though, causing quite a stir among the social circle that the rich folks run in. Maya's performance however manages to excel both for the master and the masters son. This episode didn't do a whole heck of a lot for us. While I really loved the Maya character design, the whole S&M stuff just doesn't make good hentai at times, and this definitely qualified for several parts of it. It's not a complete loss as there are a number of decent sequences, but it's not a standout favorite.

The character designs are something that I found drew me into the show more this time around than before. Maya's appearance across all five episodes has been different, but this one managed to resonate a bit more than some of the previous ones. Her role here is one that is truly innocent and she finds herself wrapped up in something that's more than she can handle. Of course, there's something about her that lets it go beyond the norm and that change in her character is well reflected in the design. Some characters can really work it well in transitioning from innocent to slut without losing what makes them work. Maya is definitely one of them in this episode.

In Summary:
When a show makes you queasy within the first few frames, odds are you're not in for something that you're going to like. I've seen a lot of things over the years, animated and live action, but things such as the opening here where "spider silk" is used to make someone perkier and tongue rings pulled out to the extreme are just a turnoff. The show does actually settle down a bit after that and just runs the BDSM area pretty well so there's some appeal to be found there, though Maya is obviously involved in a lot of non consensual sex. While the show didn't turn me away as completely as it did back in 2000, it's still not something that I feel I need to put in the player again for another seven or eight years.

Japanese 2.0 Language,English 2.0 Language,English Subtitles,Outtakes

Review Equipment
Sony KDS-R70XBR2 70" LCoS 1080P HDTV, Sony PlayStation3 Blu-ray player via HDMI set to 1080p, Onkyo TX-SR605 Receiver and Panasonic SB-TP20S Multi-Channel Speaker System With 100-Watt Subwoofer.


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