Mania Grade: C+
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- Audio Rating: NA
- Video Rating: NA
- Packaging Rating: NA
- Menus Rating: NA
- Extras Rating: NA
- Age Rating: 13 and Up
- Region: All Region DVD
- Released By: Crunchyroll
- Running time: 50
- Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1 Anamorphic Widescreen
- Disc Resolution: 480i/p
- Disc Encoding: MPEG-2
- Series: Shin Koihime Musou
Shin Koihime Musou Episodes #03-#04
Shin Koihime Musou Episodes #03-#04 Review
By G.B. Smith
January 27, 2010
Release Date: November 08, 2009
Shin Koihime Musou
Now that they have introduced Ryuubi, the team is on the road again, in search of Ryuubi's family heirloom sword. Let's see if it's just another excuse to get them into a hot springs or the like.
What They Say
Towards the end of the Han Dynasty, the world is in the throes of chaos and disorder.
In a time when strength is needed, a hero is secretly sharpening her skills as a warrior of justice: her name is Kan'u Unchou. Kan'u will put her life on the line, test her strength and power, fighting to protect those in need. Together with Chouhi Ekitoku, they make a vow as sisters to forge down this path of justice, awaiting whatever fate has in store for them...
Now in SHIN KOIHIME MUSO, Kan’u and Chouhi explode into battle as they must again stand up and fight for peace during these turbulent times. Together they set out to assemble their team of warriors, eyes to the horizon and the many battles and adventures that awaits for them up ahead!
Episode 3: Kousonsan Fights Enshou!
Episode 4: The Three Chou Sisters Acquire the "Crucial Keys to the Way of Peace"
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
Picking up where we left off last time, the gang goes to see Kousonsan, who has Ryuubi's sword. Except that Kousonsan doesn't have the sword anymore. For she was forced to give the sword to Enshou in exchange for some foodstuffs, since her city was suffering from a famine. And so, the gang goes to Enshou in order to see if they can get the sword back. Enshou, of course, does not want to return it so easily. Instead, she challenges Kousonsan to a contest. Why does this sound familiar? Oh, yeah, because Enshou made Kan'u and Chouhi go through a contest when they visited her in season 1. It would appear that the only reason the writers have sent the gang to Enshou's place is in order to stage yet another ridiculous series of competitions, which will likely end with the En family underwear making its appearance yet again. Those who have seen the first season will know what I am talking about.
So it begins. The Announcer Girl is back as well as a slew of ludicrous contests. A test of useless knowledge, catching eels with breasts, moving beans, impressions, cosplay,…wait. Catching eels with breasts? Yes. Yes indeed. And then a final match that I cannot describe without crossing several lines in taste, community standards, and personal dignity. Needless to say, it involves the En family undergarment and Enshou losing the match. Afterward, however, Enshou does not give back the sword, since she doesn't actually have it. Her cousin Enjutsu traded a robe for it, a robe that idiots cannot see. A fool and her sword are soon and easily parted…
In the next episode, we turn away from the main gang in order to see three young women who have a failing magic act/singing act: the Chou (Zhang) Sisters. Their use of the oft seen "person appearing in an empty box" routine marks them from the start as being a group of run-of-the-mill magicians. The trick does not do much to impress their audience on the street (that trick is so old, it's beyond old at this point). So, they turn to their singing, which seems to go over a little better with the crowd, but since the sun is setting, everyone is leaving to go home (remember, no electric streetlights in ancient China). This is when a mysterious magician appears, offering to show the girls some of his magic in exchange for their performance. He turns them into a pop idol group on a stage in front of a loudly cheering crowd.
Once, a while ago, when discussing with some friends the odd possibilities that could happen with this "rewrite" of the Three Kingdoms story, I joked that the Yellow Turbans, the real religious rebels who helped to contribute to the actual falling apart of the Han Dynasty, could be turned into an idol group, since they would obviously become women in this version of events. I was joking. Apparently, the people over there intend to do this for real (I claim no credit for influencing them in any way. Chalk it up to my ability to predict the sometimes utterly predictable from across the Pacific).
So, an idol group. With really short skirts and magic "microphones." As well as cheesy pop music with traditional Chinese musical influences. Of course, they are a hit (the short skirts probably don't hurt). Thus began the Yellow Turban Rebellion in this version, though perhaps they would more appropriately be called the Yellow Ribbons here. Every cliche in the book regarding pop idols and their fandom is here. They even have the classic "short fat man and tall skinny man" duo among the fans.
Only after the midpoint of the episode do we get back to Kan'u and gang as they are entering a town. This is where they see a poster for the Chou Sisters. None of them have heard of them except for Ryuubi, who says they are famous. Naturally, she really wants to see them in concert. While Kan'u at first thinks it's not worth stopping, as they want to get to Enjutsu's place as soon as possible, Ryuubi uses the Power of Tears™ to blackmail Kan'u into saying yes. At the concert venue, they have all sorts of merchandise (including the infamous "hugging pillows," you wonder where they manufactured those). Chouhi wants some candy, and so we are then treated to the entire group sucking on some very suggestively shaped lollipops. As if no one saw that coming a million miles away.
We end with just the slightest hint of trouble in the future, as the crowd starts to get a little unruly. Chouhi stops a fight from breaking out, but the Chou Sisters are worried about how to stop trouble from occurring the next time.
The first episode saw a little bit of a retread from last season, as a visit to Enshou results in yet another ludicrous series of competitions. The next episode introduces another major factor in the real history of the later Han Dynasty, as we have the arrival of the Yellow Turbans…who are here a trio of sisters who form a pop idol singing group. At least the creators earn some marks for creativity. For an all-girl pop singing group is about the furthest thing in my mind when I think about the Yellow Turbans. Still, the show has pretty clearly decided what it is going to be: a fanservice festival with some occasionally suggestive humor. That's really all there is to it.
‚®Japanese 2.0 Language, English Subtitles‚®‚®
‚®Apple Mac Mini with 1GB RAM, Mac OS 10.5 Leopard