Blu-Ray Review: Medaka Box - Season One (2012)

Posted by Retrokaiser On Sunday, August 24, 2014 0 comments

"Medaka Box Season One" is an animated action comedy series about a girl named Medaka Kurokami. On the first day of the new school year we have Medaka get elected Student Council President and swears that she'll fix every problem that the students have.  Medeka sets up a suggestion box and fulfills any request left in there and her first quest is to scare off a gang of delinquents that are hanging out in the Kendo Club building.  Medeka doesn't tackle her missions alone as she has her childhood friend named Zenkichi Hitoyoshi fighting alongside with her. Once that whole quest is over she hires Hitoyoshi to be part of the Student Council to which he accepts her offer. Now they have a new goal which is to gain more members for the Student Council while completing all of the request that are left in the suggestion box. Some adventures you will see our heroes in include: Trying to return a pet dog, starting a swim meet so the swimming pool can get more use, trying to stop a student corrupted with power, plus more in this show about a not so normal teen-ager. (Click "Read More" to read the full review).

I liked the main idea of this show quite a lot as it leaves the door open for many fun situations and it was indeed executed very well. For the most part this show is episodic but we do start to see a few stories that run for a few parts.  Most episodes of this show are made up of two mini-episodes just like something found in cartoons like "Rugrats (1991 - 2004)" and "Angry Beavers (1997 - 2001)" and it worked well as you don't expect every mission taking up the whole episode.  I also like for the most part how this show is trying to be an "anti-fight anime" where they try to solve problems with as little fighting as possible and that leads to some creative ideas leaving the show feeling fresh. This show does turn into a mild fighting show towards the end and it does feel a little odd but that's not to say that this show can't have any crazy action in it. The action in this show was well done with exciting fights and comedic violence that was charming, funny, and can get a bit over the top.

This show does contain quite a bit of fan-service of the big and bouncy kind and I hate to say this but I enjoyed the fan-service quite a bit due to how sexy and fun it was. The worst the fan-service gets is Medeka showing off in her underwear and it is really mild compared to a lot of anime out there. I do not have a lot of problems with this show but I do have some nonetheless with one of them being that some scenes in this show did drag out for a little too long and did get a little boring.  Another problem is that this show can get a little too over the top to where it is a bit cringe worthy to where I yelled out "seriously?" at the television. I am surprised that this is a show done by a studio called "Gainax" ("Neon Genesis Evangellion (1995 - 1996)", "Panty and Stocking with Garterbelt (2010)") as this show is missing a lot of the troupes Gainax are known for like: psychedelic storytelling and terrible final episodes (yeah I said it). It does have some troupes that Gainax have like their style of fan-service but for the most part this show suffers troupes found more so from "Shonen Jump" anime/manga.

Characters in this show were very entertaining although a good chunk of them aren't the most original characters that I have ever seen but that's to be expected with a show based on a "Shonen Jump" comic series. I was impressed with the character Medeka as I haven't seen many females in anime that are both as strong nor as shameless as her without coming off as a total waste of time. If it wasn't for her this show would be very generic as her huge "showoff" personality adds a lot of flavor. Not to say that she doesn't have any problems as she does suffer from being a little pretentious during some scenes and she can be a little too "perfect" at times and by that I mean it gets a little annoying how she has to be "always right" during some scenes.

Art-work in this show has an incredibly basic but still good look to it. I did enjoy the designs of the backgrounds as while basic they did look beautiful and they were also fun to look at with all of the weird and mysterious rooms in the school. The designs for the main characters were good and very interesting plus I liked how they found a good balance for Medeka as she looks sexy and beautiful without looking cheap and slutty which is the problem that a lot of main female characters have in anime. The designs for the minor characters vary from decent to weird and cheap looking in terms of quality and you'll find yourself laughing at some of them.  Animation in this show is passable but there isn't anything special I can say about it. I did notice a mistake here and there with one example being that there is a scene where Medeka gets her clothes damaged only to cut to the next shot of her clothes being fixed and then cutting to another angle with her clothes damaged again.

Japanese dub in this show was passable with voices that worked with the characters but the acting could've had more effort put into the show as it sounded a little rushed. This show does have an English dub but I didn't figure that out until after I finished the show but by then I got so used to this show with the Japanese dub that I didn't really care at all for the English dub.  The soundtrack for this show wasn't very memorable and I cant for the life of me remember tracks other than the opening and closing credit songs.

There's a decent amount of special features including: Text-less opening and closing credits and a whole load of Japanese trailers and promotional videos. The trailers and promotional videos for this show are as followed: "Jump Festa Promo", "Teasers", "Promo", and "Home Video Spots". I did enjoy most of them especially the "Jump Festa Promo" as I've always wanted to see material from that convention to appear on any release for quite some time now. Some trailers were a bit too long and did get quite boring. The text-less credits were nice to re-watch due to having nice music and some fun visuals that went along with it. Lastly you get a special teaser trailer promoting the second season of the show that was alright and did get me looking forward to future episodes.

Overall this was a very fun show but this is also a show where you don't have to run to the store and pick up right away as this is the kind of show you watch when you haven't got anything else to watch. Just because it's one of those kind of shows it doesn't mean that I am not going to recommend this show as this is a show I do recommend you see but just keep what I said in mind. I did enjoy this show enough to get excited for the next season and that will be reviewed sometime in the near future. Fun viewing.

Title: Medaka Box - Season One
Animation Studio: Gainax
Genre: Animation/Anime, Action, Comedy
Running Time: 288 Minutes (12 Episodes)
Distributor: Hanabee Entertainment
Rating: M15+ (Sexual references)
Price: $64.99
Recommended: Yes


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