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Anime: Tenjho Tenge DVD #3 "Round 03"
Thursday, October 13, 2005
(Contains minor spoilers)

Age Rating: 16+
Company: Geneon
Genre: Fighting
Running Time: 75 mins approx (*screams*)
DVD Region 1

"Mitsuomi has arrived and the Juken Club are in for some major schooling in martial arts"


Three new episodes here, "Dragon Eye", "Regulation" and "Memory", as the first arc of the story comes to a close. Last disc the battle inside the bowling alley was still raging and here we see Aya going head to head with the zombie like Tagami. Its a brutal battle and Aya unleashes the monstrous "Dragon Eye" power within her to increase her advantage, it was pretty amusing to see the seemingly confident Tagami turning to jelly at the sheer power in Aya (who even traumatized herself by how she behaves). You can almost think he's going to say "No, please don't hurt me!!! I'm only a weird looking zombie guy with a staff that can bend at any angle!". We also get to see Mitsuomi unleash his abilities for the first time as Bob and Mitsuomi's own brother face his wrath. The punches flow as freely as ever each hit being painful to watch as they reign down. The events at the bowling alley begin to build up a plot (something that's been fairly absent till now), and after the dust settles and it's clear how powerful both Nagi and Mitsuomi are. Maya is certainly left with a lot of explaining to do as the final episode of the disc kicks in and the old rivalry between Mitsuomi and Maya begins to be explained as we flash back in time.


The flashback episode here (which I assume is the first of many flashback episodes) abandons all of the original cast bar Maya,Mitsuomi and Bunshichi (who we met briefly in the bowling alley). We are introduced to Shin Natsume, Maya's older brother and Mana his girlfriend. At this present point in time Maya and Mitsuomi have just joined Todo Academy and Shin is the head of the student council, with his own battle group "KATANA". It seems clear to everybody bar Shin and Maya themselves (perhaps they are in denial), that they have a rather abnormal relationship for brother and sister. Mana (evidently jealous) comments that "they are more like lovers", and they are certainly utterly obsessed with one-another. It's interesting to note here that Mitsuomi is a very nice person at this point, kind, caring but evidently with a crush on Maya. Something very dark is brewing in the background and I can't wait to see what string of events are going to bring things to its climax. Maya seems a lot different here too, a much darker disturbing side to herself we haven't seen before, all relating to her utter obsession with her older brother. For the first time the series shows true depth and begins to hook me in to its plot rather than its mindless violence.


The main fault with Tenjho Tenje to be found at this point is the animation, its badly done with lots of panning shots and stills with lines flying about them to create a feeling of movement. No Maya isn't falling into those dustbins she's just still in the middle of the screen with lines attempting to make it look like she has. Sorry to break that to you Madhouse. Story and character wise at this point I can't really fault it like I could the previous volume but the animation lets it down. It's not bad all the time, but when it is, it's awful.

Geneon have handled this release pretty well, the low episode count annoyed me as much as it usually does, but I am kinda used to it now. The dub quite frankly is utter crap and could melt your ear drums if you listened to Aya shrieking and Nagi sounding like a 12 year old brat for too long. Sub is the only real choice of audio here. The transfer onto DVD is flawless with good video quality throughout, clear and crisp pictures. The extras on the disc are non-existent bar extreme basics, which is very poor, although not unexpected. Packaging wise the cover has Mitsuomi in all his bishyness with Maya looking rather crammed in the background. The back cover has the usual blurb as well as episode pictures. The reverse cover side presents a clear text free version of the cover image, and my copy came with a pencilboard of the cover image too (similar to previous volumes). Good quality packing all round.


Overall Scores

Episode Contents: 8/10
Interesting plot developments, mixed in with the usual carnage.

Animation:5/10
Some bits good, some bits awful. But consistently average.

Audio: 6.5/10
Great glitch free audio, but the dub knocks down the marks. Its bad.

Video: 9/10
Flawless great quality

Extras: 2/10
Geneon evidently don't actually know what they are

Packaging: 8/10
Shiney and sparkly, and with a pencilboard. Yay!
posted by Mangaminx On Thursday, October 13, 2005  
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