Mahoromatic: Summer Special (also w/box & figure) - Mania.com



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Info:

  • Age Rating: 16 & Up
  • Region: 1 - North America
  • Released By: Geneon Entertainment (USA), Inc.
  • MSRP: 14.98/39.98
  • Running time: 36
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1 Anamorphic Widescreen
  • Disc Resolution: 480i/p (mixed/unknown)
  • Disc Encoding: MPEG-2
  • Series: Mahoromatic

Mahoromatic: Summer Special (also w/box & figure)

By Chris Beveridge     May 29, 2004
Release Date: May 18, 2004


Mahoromatic: Summer Special (also w/box & figure)
© Geneon Entertainment (USA), Inc.


What They Say
Disc only edition is $14.98, Disc plus Box edition is $24.98 and Disc plus Box plus Figure is $39.98.

The Review!
While the TV series is over, Mahoro returns for one more bit of fun with the young Suguru and his mad mad collection of dirty books.

Audio:
For our primary viewing session, we listened to this show in its original language of Japanese. While the show has a few dynamic action moments, it actually features quite a number of dynamic dialogue moments where the directionality across the forward soundstage comes across perfectly as there are a number of characters and jokes running at any given time. The pro-logic mix here sounds very good and we noted no dropouts or distortions on either language track.

Video:
The summer special is essentially one more episode in the TV series so the quality is very much the same as what we got throughout the two seasons of the show. It's done in its original anamorphic widescreen format and just looks fantastic with the lush colors throughout. Aliasing and cross coloration are both minimal, which isn't too much of a surprise considering the higher bit rate since there's only the one episode here. Overall there aren't any surprises here and we get a good clean transfer that just shines a lot.

Packaging:
Presented in a clear keepcase, the front cover for goes for a nice simple image of Mahoro in her maid outfit sitting on the lawn with her skirt pulled down around her, so there's nothing terribly dirty about this one unlike some of the past ones. The back cover provides a couple of small full color shots from the show and a brief premise summary. The features, extras and production information are all clear and easy to read. The insert has a nice shot of Mahoro and Suguru together with Mahoro letting some dandelion bits float away. The two-panel interior shot looks good for the most part with Mahoro and Minawa together but Minawa's lower half really doesn't look too good from that perspective. The back cover has a really cute shot of most of the girls from the show in band uniforms set against the chapter listings. The main cover itself, like past volumes, is reversible and does a similar shot to the insert but with Minawa as well as they're all over the dandelion field.

Menu:
The menu layout for the show is done up very differently than the other volumes which were all in-theme to things like Saint and other more military aspects. This one provides a good simple image of Mahoro from the cover artwork sitting in the flowers with her eyes blinking and the clouds flowing by in the background to a bit of the opening song. The menus are much simpler overall than the previous ones so access times are nice and fast and everything goes smoothly with minimal transitional animations.

Extras:
While there's not too much show on the volume, there are a fair amount of extras to be had. There's a good full color artwork gallery that's a mix of promotional pieces and shots from the show itself as well as the line art gallery with design sketches. The opening and ending sequences to this episode are provided in their textless forma as well. There are also a couple of promotional videos, both of which are Japanese language/subtitle only. The first one runs about three minutes and the second one runs about five and a half minutes. Both are cute little supplemental pieces in their own way and are definitely good to have. Each one of those relates to their respective seasons. Amazingly enough, there's a five minute promotional video for the summer special, which is basically like a quarter of the shows runtime. I can't figure the mentality of that?

Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
If there was one thing about the TV series that ended up irking about half the audience it was the end of the series. Many complained that it should have ended an episode early since they didn't like what had happened to the cast and the changes that were made. I don't know the reasons behind making this particular Summer Special (other than money obviously), but it's easy to see this as an appeasement to the fans who did not like the dark (yet really expected) ending.

This episode takes us back into the heart of the series of the second season where Minawa is a steady fixture in the Suguru household and everyone is enjoying life to the fullest. And that includes young Suguru and his male friends who are reveling in their study of dirty magazines, something that Mahoro is steadfastly against. Dirty thoughts are bad is her basic mantra, and through an amusing flashback to the past with Suguru's father, we learn exactly why she's like this and why she takes it to the extremes she does with poor Suguru.

Unlike past instances though, Suguru and company are prepared for their impending doom as they've got another stash of dirty magazines. Mahoro has decided enough is enough and recruits not only the other girls but also Ms. Shijiko to help catch the three boys and their goods. The girls are all set since it's a bit of fun, but Shijiko looks at it as an opportunity for Suguru to end up without any books and then be so hard up for lack of them that he'd be all over her. You got to love her train of thought. So while the girls get their plans together, the guys split up the goods and head off in separate directions just before Mahoro launches her attack.

This is just a pure comedy episode with lots of dirty bits to it. There's a good amount of fan service, especially early on with all the girls in the bath and showing just about all of it. As a plus, they're 'rendered' well in that not all of them are the same size as was evident in the TV show and even Shijiko gets brought down to something closer to reality. For fans of fanservice like this, this episode pays off handsomely. Lots of skin, very nicely animated, complete with perky nipples. It's just like the old days only shinier!

In Summary:
With a good set of extras, gorgeous video quality and a just plain fun script with one of the best gag endings in Suguru's room, the Summer Special is the kind of episode that drew the bulk of the fans to the show and helps ease the pain many felt from the end of the second season of the series. It's quality level is essentially the same as the TV series itself and it just shines beautifully here. While the title may be "All Dirty Thoughts are Bad!", they certainly make up a good portion of this episode and we've got no complaints about that.

Features
Japanese Language,English Language,English Subtitles

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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