Puni Puni Poemi - Mania.com

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  • Audio Rating: B-
  • Video Rating: B
  • Packaging Rating: B+
  • Menus Rating: B-
  • Extras Rating: C+
  • Age Rating: 18 & Up
  • Region: 2 - Japan
  • Released By: ADV Films UK
  • MSRP: £19.99
  • Running time: 60
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Disc Resolution: 480i/p (mixed/unknown)
  • Disc Encoding: MPEG-2
  • Series: Puni Puni Poemi

Puni Puni Poemi

By Paul Jacques     June 30, 2005
Release Date: June 20, 2005

Puni Puni Poemi
© ADV Films UK

What They Say
When evil aliens kill Poemy Watanabe’s parents, she doesn’t get mad, she gets revenge… but first she moves in with seven crazy Aasu sisters, discovers the magic power of dead fish, develops a serious crush on a local octopus, experiences the bizarre and varied wonders and joys of fighting terrorists, S&M, giant robots and becoming a super hero… all while pursuing her REAL ambition of becoming a professional voice actress!

The Review!
The two episode OVA spin-off of Excel Saga has landed on our shores at last. Can the quack experimental team pull off another amusing and clever parody anime?

I listened in both 224KBs audio tracks (Japanese and English), frequently hopping between tracks. Both were clear with their respective VA’s putting in solid performances. Sadly, all we get is frontal stereo, with no left or right sound movement whatsoever. If I had to choose, then the Japanese track is the one to go with. There is a third audio track, which is the USA VA commentary, and it sounded like an unrehearsed episode of Mystery Science 3000, still, it was very amusing, if totally crazy, so check it out if you don’t much care for the “plot”.

The opening song is called Punipuni Densetsu-poi and although fun sounding it isn’t a classic. The closing song is called Laughing in my dream, heh, heh, heh and although crazy sounding isn’t a keeper either- this isn’t the fault of the excellent VA Yumiko Kobayashi by the way, it’s just the songs suck.

Quality of the transfer looked good, I couldn’t see any errors in the video stream on TV or PC playback. The animation is what you might call standard, with nothing trick or detailed to catch the eye. Colours are slightly dull, with a slight fuzziness to the characters edges, not your Gonzo pin-sharp crispness that’s for sure.

Packaging is very good: We get transparent box with a great reversible cover, so you can it English or the original Japanese if you so wish. And inside we have a foldout poster, with a nice ecchi cover of the girls on one side, and good read on the other. Yes, the reverse side has an interesting story surrounding the PPP anime, so check it out if you have 10 minutes to kill. Finally the disc itself is a pretty pink affair, with a Puni Puni Poemy graphic with a coat of arms on it.

Brightly coloured menus, set in yellows and pinks- garish wouldn’t begin to describe it ;-) The main menu has links for episodes 1 & 2, Extras and Language. All links worked quickly and no dead ends were encountered.

So, what’s in the Extras? Well, we get clean OP/ Ed. Followed by a 13 minute behind the scenes documentary, which I’d advice you pass by. Next up we get 2 minutes of pencilled Production sketches, which is nothing to get excited about. We also get 2 minutes of coloured Production sketches, which is not unlike the aforementioned 2 minutes.

Content: (please note that content portions of a review will contain spoilers)
The story, such as it is, concerns young Poemy Watanabe, who lives with Nabeshin Watanabe and Miss Kumikumi in a shack. All she wants from life is love from a school boy named “K” and to be a voice actress for Director Watanabe.

Life is hard for our young heroine, but things get harder when Nabeshin Watanabe and Miss Kumikumi are killed by nasty space aliens, leaving little Poemy without a home or legal guardian. Luckily, her school friend Futaba takes her into her home and Poemy is adopted by the Aasu Sisters. Only little does Poemy know that Aasu sisters are the sworn guardians of the planet, and when danger arises they transform into themselves (no, that’s not a typo)- yes, a transformation where nothing happens @_@

And little do the Aasu sisters know that they harbour the mighty Puni Puni Poemy! Also guardian of the earth, only so not careful about what she breaks along the way.

It’s not long before the nasty space aliens are attacking the Earth again, via their Giant Mecha. The Aasu sisters rise to the occasion, but are soundly beaten back by the overwhelming firepower. And just when things look bad, the Magical saviour Puni Puni Poemy arrives on the scene to save the day with her mighty powers. The rest of the story, such as it is, is about Puni Puni Poemy fighting the nasty space aliens, in their Death Star. There really isn’t much else to say, apart from that they manage to squeeze in suitably theme eco message for the ending.

I like the fact that the Magical Girl sub-genre gets parodied; Sailor Moon gets a good kicking throughout the story; Pretear has a small knife in the ribs for it’s trouble. Dai-Guard (Transformers in general) have their noses bloodied. And finally, Star Wars (don’t ask, I really don’t know) gets a quick flick in the love spuds with a wet towel en route. All are worthy parody targets, yet each idea failed to bring any mirth to my evening. Why should this be, when I LMAO when watching Excel Saga?

There are four major problems with this OVA-
1.The animators spent too much time laughing up their collective sleeves at the in-jokes, making it inaccessible for most people to understand.
2.Poemy’s machine-gun style way of talking meant you missed 90% of what was said. I even watched it in English WITH subtitles on, and still missed most of the gags. Bizarrely, it was easier to follow in Japanese >_<
3.I’m not convinced that a wacky and lampooning anime can carry a gag for a whole hour.
4.It was made on the cheap, and it shows.

The 18 cert comes from the swearing and the sexual innuendo. And to be honest, the much whispered about ecchi scenes with compromised minors (and I’m not talking about Arthur Scargill here) have been hyped out of proportion, leaving only the parody of the cliché hentai for us to muse upon.

In summary-
Although very clever in places, I didn’t laugh once, and that is unforgivable in a comedy. Excel Saga knew to keep things moving along, even by it’s own zany standards. Puni Puni Poemi stopped at the first joke – crazy Poemy Watanabe with silly super powers - and stayed there. Alas, this one trick pony went lame very early on in the entertainment race.

English Language DD 2.0,Japanese Language DD 2.0,English Subtitles,Production Sketches,Clean opening closing,Foldout mini poster,Reversible covers (with Japanese original),English Commentary,Behind the scenes

Review Equipment
JVC 28" Pure Flat Wide Screen TV, Pioneer 454 Progressive Scan code free DVD player, Logitech Z-680 THX DD/DTS receiver & Speakers. Secondary equipment, 21” Sony Trinitron monitor, ATI 9700pro & PowerDVD v4, Creative Audigy 2 & headphones and a duck.


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