Please Twins Vol. #3 - Mania.com



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Mania Grade: B+

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Info:

  • Audio Rating: B+
  • Video Rating: A-
  • Packaging Rating: B+
  • Menus Rating: B+
  • Extras Rating: B
  • Age Rating: 13 & Up
  • Region: 1 - North America
  • Released By: Bandai Entertainment
  • MSRP: 29.98
  • Running time: 75
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Disc Resolution: 480i/p (mixed/unknown)
  • Disc Encoding: MPEG-2
  • Series: Please Twins

Please Twins Vol. #3

By Chris Beveridge     March 10, 2005
Release Date: March 22, 2005


Please Twins Vol. #3
© Bandai Entertainment


What They Say
Maiku’s classmate, Kousei Shimazaki, seems to have eyes for Maiku but there also seems to be something else going on between Kousei and their upperclassman, Tsubaki Oribe.

On a sunny afternoon, Maiku, Karen and Miina go out into town. But due to certain circumstances, each of the girls spends time alone with Maiku and they are tossed from temptation to break the love alliance and feelings left alone.

One day, Miina comes across a friend from middle school and some things about her past are revealed.

The Review!
As the trio gets closer to each other, more of their pasts and fears start to come to the surface as does the anxiety over the situation.

Audio:
For our primary viewing session, we listened to this show in its original language of Japanese. The show has a good stereo mix to it with a solid use of dialogue across the forward soundstage. There’s a bit of nice depth to it and some well placed directionality. The music comes across very good as well with no noticeable dropouts or distortions during regular playback.

Video:
Originally airing in 2003, the transfer for this series is presented in its original full frame aspect ratio. Much like Please Teacher, the show is filled with a lot of real-life settings and the colors to fill it well. What makes it shine though is the colors used in the outdoor settings with all the greens and blues and then the sunrise/sunset scenes are just so lush and beautiful here that it goes up a few extra notches. The green fields in particular that captivated me in Please Teacher are once against present here. The transfer in general manages to make out very well as there's no noticeable cross coloration and the colors used avoid the gradation problem. Aliasing is very minimal, especially with the limited amount of movement throughout here, and in general this is a very pleasing transfer.

Packaging:
Using the cover artwork from the Japanese DVD release but with a different background, the cover is a really pleasing piece of artwork that has the two main women from the series plus Mizuho set against a bunch of big sunflowers and a bright blue sky. It's a very soft and easy on the eyes kind of cover with good looking character designs and colors. Volume numbering appears only on the spine, and Bandai goes the additional distance of listing the episode numbers and titles on the back cover. The back cover is nicely laid out as an operating system window with numerous pictures and brief bits of summary, features and production information in small bits throughout it. Unlike Please Teacher, we don't get reversible covers here. The insert replicates the art from the front cover and opens up to a two panel piece that has a variety of full color character shots of Karen. The last panel on the insert has the full production credits and a bilingual cast list, though it goes in more detail with the Japanese cast. Also included in the keepcase is a postcard, this time of Karen and Miina in their summer festival outfits walking through the stands and trees.

Menu:
The menus used for this release are among the more animated ones to come out of Bandai lately. The center of the menu has a trio of panels with each of the characters in one and they move and swoop around each other, rotating in other pictures or creating a triptych image with all of them. It doesn't go on too long as the looping is fairly brief but it's set to a well enough piece of music that it won't drive you insane if you let it play for awhile. Access times are nice and fast and the menus load quickly. Unfortunately, the disc did not read our players language presets on two different players and default to English language with no subtitles.

Extras:
The extras are similar to the previous volume so if you liked that you've got more of it here. There's three more image vocal pieces which I do enjoy watching and listening to. The opening sequence is provided in textless form and we also get some of the commercials for the CD release for the series soundtracks.

Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
Please Twins continues on in its merry way without doing too much to really change the dynamic of the show just yet, though the last few minutes of the final episode on this volume does provide for a sizeable shift in what we're going to see in the next and final volume. But for these three episodes, it's almost a bit of more of the same but with some actual growth and exploration mixed in, clichés included.

The way the relationships are working is one of the things that really makes this series so much fun for me. Having a near true threesome of a sorts being so openly happy with each other is amusing and a change for a lot of series which would rather just have them fighting on and on for years on end. With the trio here, it's definitely causing people to notice though and they're all unsure of how to take it since it's being done so publicly at times. The person it's the worst for though is Tsubaki since she still feels strongly for Maiku. In a way, it's been hard to figure out who to really root for if you're not rooting for the threesome mode and Tsubaki has always been the odd cog out in this since she's the one with no true relation and supposedly honest feelings for Maiku that's not related to being so close to him so constantly.

But this episode has her allowing the class president to manipulate things so that she does spend a lot of time with Maiku and it keeps him away from the other two so Tsubaki starts to get the time she's been thinking she's wanted with him and getting closer to him. Maiku doesn't treat it as much of anything though he knows he's being manipulated but since he's being paid for it he's not complaining much. While Tsubaki does continually try to draw him out, her own mindset causes her to break things dramatically when she accidentally falls and he catches her, but not without his own hand accidentally gropes her. Her overreaction to this begins a new series of revelations that changes the make-up of the group entirely as we learn that she had been seeing someone prior to Maiku's arrival in town and that he had gone a bit too fast for her, or rather, in a way that she didn't want things to progress since it didn't match her magical dreamy vision of a young couple in love.

There are also some good revelations given later in the volume with regards to Miina as she ends up dealing with a surprise in her life as an old friend of hers arrives in town. To her surprise, the Inter-High meeting is taking place in this small sleepy town so people from all over are showing up there. The arrival of Yuka brings a flood of memories back about her past that she hasn't revealed to anyone since her own arrival in the town and the conflict is very apparent across her face. She ends up spending a good deal of time away from the others and Yuka herself while she tries to work things out but as the pieces start to be put together, the character of Miina becomes much clearer and it explains a number of her early mannerisms when the series started.

This volume also has something of a comical middle episode that deals with the two girls dealing with the strain of their Love Alliance as each of them gets perilously close to breaking one of the rules, but overall it's a very light episode that goes towards providing some basic skin shots and fanservice as well as letting the girls go through their usual angst about their situation, something that I can imagine any young woman at that age thinking about constantly if she were in it. I also liked that they brought in some of the other couples throughout the episode and usually at awkward times to help flesh it out a bit more. It's a very light episode for the most part and it sort of gets dragged out at the end, but considering the heavier episodes as the bookends of the release it was definitely needed.

In Summary:
While Please Twins does get overly dramatic at times, for me it works fine within the way the show is structured and it's to be expected to do this since it is focused on the potential romance of three teenagers. This set of episodes does some of the necessary work at this stage of providing more background and exposition on both some of the primary and secondary characters and it does it well since the relationships all start to change because of it and things are going to be different going into the final episodes. Between the fun with the story and the beautiful visuals, this series continues to be something that's close to a guilty pleasure but I feel no guilt in enjoying it.

Features
Japanese 2.0 Language,English 2.0 Language,English Subtitles,Image Vocal Clips,Textless Ending,Commercials


Review Equipment
Panasonic PT50LC13 50" LCD RP HDTV, Zenith DVB-318 Progressive Scan codefree DVD player via DVI with upconversion set to 720p, Sony STR-DE835 DD/DTS receiver, Panasonic SB-TP20S Multi-Channel Speaker System With 100-Watt Subwoofer.

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