Rei Rei -

Anime/Manga Reviews

Mania Grade: B-

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  • Audio Rating: B+
  • Video Rating: B
  • Packaging Rating: B+
  • Menus Rating: B+
  • Extras Rating: B-
  • Age Rating: 18 & Up
  • Region: 1 - North America
  • Released By: SoftCel Pictures
  • MSRP: 29.98
  • Running time: 50
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Disc Resolution: 480i/p (mixed/unknown)
  • Disc Encoding: MPEG-2
  • Series: Rei-Rei

Rei Rei

By Chris Beveridge     April 15, 2003
Release Date: April 22, 2003

Rei Rei
© SoftCel Pictures

What They Say
Sweat-soaked bodies writhe in passion as a nurse and a doctor plot to murder the nurse's young ward; meanwhile, a young man endures the despair of unrequited love, unaware that the object of his desire is in love... with another woman!

If these hardly seem like sources for high comedy, perhaps it's because you're not Kaguya, a strangely powerful being with the ability to manipulate the fabric of reality, an extremely perverse sense of humor, and a propensity for baring her breasts.

A living manifestation of the Hand (or some other bodily portion) of Fate, those who fall under Kaguya's twisted spell will never be the same again, for she delights in giving people their hearts' desires-and letting them suffer the consequences!

Together with her stumpy man-servant Pipi, Kaguya stages her human puppet shows with the flair of a master show-woman, foiling perfect murders, turning young men INTO the women of their dreams, and generally causing mass chaos and disaster.

This much fun shouldn't be legal... but not even the laws of nature apply to Kaguya!

The Review!
One of the earliest releases, SoftCel has brought Rei Rei back out for a new group of fans to check out.

For our primary viewing session, we listened to this disc in its original language of Japanese since I can’t bring myself to listen to early hentai dubs. The audio track here is a basic stereo mix that sounds decent if unexceptional. Dialogue is clean and clear throughout and we noticed no dropouts or other distortions during regular playback.

Originally released back in 1993, Rei Rei has hit its tenth anniversary here. For the most part, the transfer looks good, though the show has a lot of intentionally soft areas, giving it a less than stellar looking presentation. There are a few nicks and scratches throughout, but nothing that’s horribly bothersome. Colors look good, with a few vibrant moments here and there. Cross coloration is very minimal as well as aliasing.

Something in the old-time fanboy in me just loves covers like this with the lead character being wrapped up in ecstasy due to tentacles. This image has a lot of very good vibrant colors with her set against the bright image of the moon, providing a very attractive visual overall. The back cover has a nice clothed image of Kaguya and a very lengthy summary of the shows premise. The discs technical information is a bit obscured, but overall the information is all presented on the back once you find it. The insert has the front cover artwork on one side while the reverse has some shots from the show while listing the chapter stops and the previews available on the disc.

The main menu is a nice static piece that uses the front cover artwork and expands it a bit more with the selections ring around it as the theme song to the show plays. Selections are quick to access and moving between menus is nice and fast with solid load times.

There’s a couple of minor extras included with this release. The first is the original ADV trailer for the show, which runs a surprisingly long two minutes. The production portfolio runs almost four minutes in length, but unlike past things like this, there’s no accompanying music so it gets a little dry to get through. But in the end, it’s definitely worth it as there’s some really nice conceptual pieces in there for this show.

Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
Rei Rei is one of the lighter hentai shows that were coming out in the early 90’s that had a good comedic spin to all the action and generally didn’t get anywhere near as explicit as they are today. To some extent, they’re almost softcore in how they feel, but definitely more than you get from regular anime shows.

Rei Rei also seems to be part of a larger cultural theme, as the lead character of Kaguya lives inbetween the moon and Earth and deals with human sorrow. As the sorrow grows, the moon gets further and further away. But with each incident she handles and causes the grief to end, she brings it back ever so slightly. Whether this is related in any way to the previous instances of Princess Kaguya legends in other series I’ve seen, I’m not sure, since there doesn’t seem to be a common bond beyond the name.

Kaguya, having decided that it’s time to visit Earth again, returns to her birthplace of Japan to look for those in sorrow and pain that she can help. She strikes gold pretty quickly when she finds Tanaka, a young man whose pining hard for Ikuko. He’s all set to take her out for her birthday, but she shoots him down hard and cold, almost brutal really, and goes off to another date for her birthday. While Tanaka is distraught, we follow Kaguya and Ikuko to see where she goes.

Her destination is surprisingly that of a doctor, one she’s apparently known for some time. Manami, it turns out, has been the one that has schooled Ikuko in the ways of love since she was younger and has kept her on as a plaything of sorts. While Ikuko continues to be deeply in love with Manami, to the point of forsaking all men, Manami on the other hand is tired of Ikuko and how she continually interferes with her life and her work. So she’s used this opportunity to come up with a way of getting rid of Ikuko once and for all.

Her plan goes into motion, and with Kaguya showing Tanaka the secrets behind it as we see Ikuko end up dying from an (planned) allergic reaction, we get to see the extent to which Tanaka will go to prove his love for Ikuko and deal with Manami and her boyfriend. Tanaka does go quite far and I was definitely laughing at the situations he ended up in, as well as how much he enjoyed it.

The second episode brings us into contact with a young man whose having women trouble himself, so much so that he can barely handle the sight of a naked woman before pretty much exploding. In one amusing sequence, Kaguya brings him into her bosom and he gets the best expression on his face. And then promptly dies.

These episodes are cute and fluffy in the end, providing a decent mix of comedy and light sex. More comedy ensues if you listen to the dub track, particularly the great “death” gurgle of Ikuko when she eats the wrong food in the first episode. Rei Rei is a simple and amusing little show and is definitely good for those who like the kind of shows that were made for hentai back in the early 90’s. It’s unfortunate that few hentai these days are made in this kind of way.

Japanese Language,English Language,English Subtitles,Original Trailer,Production Portfolio

Review Equipment
Toshiba TW40X81 40" HDTV, Panasonic RP-82 Progressive Scan codefree DVD player, Sony STR-DE835 DD/DTS receiver, Monster component cable and Sony speakers.


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