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Yozakura Quartet: Hoshi no Umi – 03 (END) »« Yozakura Quartet: Hoshi no Umi – 01

Yozakura Quartet: Hoshi no Umi – 02

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It’s been a good six months since the release of the first OAD episode, but the sight of the more blob-like character designs in Tatsunoko Production’s variation still draws me in the most about it. As mentioned in my episode one post, these manga-bundled episodes are a departure from author/artist Yasuda Suzuhito’s style that was more closely adhered to in Nomad’s television series adaptation. At the same time, it comes as a somewhat refreshing change, best seen when Isone Kotoha (Sawashiro Miyuki) was scaling gigantic corpse monsters Shadow of the Colossus style and unleashing her flurry of conjured attacks. There was something about her liquidity movement as she ran, jumped, and twirled to avoid attacks that made it very entertaining to watch, which may not have worked as well with arguably “stiffer” character designs.

The action itself definitely stood out in this second episode, starting with Hime’s unrelenting attack on youkai hunter/necromancer Zakuro, and continuing on with Rin hopping around like the Chinese zombie that she is. What was nice to see is a fairly substantial story develop alongside all the rapid exchanges, as it also led to a good cliffhanger to leave off with. While I really can’t say I sympathize with Zakuro after learning how she befriended Rin in the past, I did appreciate the bit of depth the flashbacks provided when she shoved Rin away from Enjin’s attack. That selfless act redeemed her character a bit, even though it was prompted by Rin’s decision to leave with Zakuro so that she wouldn’t be alone anymore. On the flip side, the latter is what made it a far cry from convincing me (as the viewer) that Zakuro is worth saving in her seemingly possessed state. Be that as it may, I suspect that Hime and the others will still try to save her for Rin’s sake. It’s the righteous thing to do and befitting of Hime’s personality as the town’s sixteen-year-old mayor.

As someone who has only seen the TV series, I find the best part of these OADs is how they aren’t completely jarring without having read the manga. Sure, there are probably a lot of subtle things that I’m overlooking from Enjin’s attempts to break the town’s barrier using youkai hunters, but it works well as a three-part supplementary OVA series centering around Rin. Thus far, there’s also been a nice combination of lighthearted moments and relevant developments, which is always a welcome approach in my books. There was surprisingly a bit of fan-service from Hime as well — something I don’t really recall seeing in the anime. Altogether, it’s a nice little addition for anime and manga fans alike, with the only downside is the long period between releases. The third and final episode is slated to be released on November 8th.

 

April 20, 2011 at 4:10 pm
14 comments »
  • April 20, 2011 at 4:22 pmVermore

    Nice ass.

  • April 20, 2011 at 5:09 pmShirt

    I began watching the TV series but I did not finish it. I wasn’t to enthralled with the character designs but this OVA looks like my cup of tea. The artwork reminds me of how pleasing Fractale was to look at. They should’ve got this guy to work on the original show.

    By the sound of it, it must be a proper sequel to the anime so I think I’ll pick it back up and enjoy this. *had no idea this was out*

    Thanks, Divine.

    • April 21, 2011 at 5:51 pmBob

      the animation is far better.
      which may give the overall product the appearance of looking better.

      but the actual character design is hardly better.
      the TV series DESIGN-WISE was far closer to Yasuda’s originals which were far better than whoever they got to redo the character designs for the OVAs.
      frankly the OVA designs are about as generic as generic can be.

      what they should’ve done is kept the TV series’ designs, but gave it the OVA animation budget.

  • April 20, 2011 at 5:15 pmERK jonathan

    de lomejor !!!!

  • April 20, 2011 at 6:56 pmStigmata25

    Wow! All this action and Hime Fan-service too!

  • April 20, 2011 at 7:52 pmvaldor

    There was also the pantsu flash from that nurse (Juri?) near the beginnnig after she is somehow knocked out by zakuro.

    • April 20, 2011 at 10:20 pmDivine

      Yeah, I had a cap of that. Didn’t keep it for some reason.

  • April 20, 2011 at 7:58 pmRockmanshii

    So you noticed how Zakuro pushed Rin over? Sasuga Divine~~

    Maybe I’m exaggerating as a big fan of the series but that fight scene with Kotoha was one of the best animated fights I’ve seen. Working with Tatsunoko on this are studios KMMJ and Purple Cow Studio. The former is pretty new (their official site isn’t even completed yet)and this OAD is their only work. I don’t know how much they contributed to the awesomeness, but I’ll keep their name in a corner of my head.
    Also thanks for taking a break from your break to cover this.

    Now the long wait for the last episode begins…

  • April 20, 2011 at 8:00 pmPetit Orenji

    Yeah! That hammer scene was magnificent. Prob. the same key animator as those Birdy Decode scenes. Looking forward to more of this work.

  • April 20, 2011 at 8:19 pmDa5id

    Pic #16. Just…#16.

  • April 20, 2011 at 10:35 pmKarmafan

    I love this series too. I especially like the girl that can create almost any weapon on the fly by naming it (or is it thinking about it).

  • April 20, 2011 at 11:05 pmAlec

    I love the story, but I just cant like the cheesiness -_- I kinda miss the characters’ personalities and the way they speak in the tv series.

  • April 21, 2011 at 12:24 amDCLXVI

    I first watched the series, then read the manga, then started watching this. It’s pretty ironic that this OAD has a different art style yet sticks to the main story, while the original series kept the art but threw the story out the 13th floor window.

    Pity, I really like the original character designs over these new ones, the girls look a lot more delicious in the originals while in the OAD they look like they’ve been pulled straight out of A Channel.

  • April 21, 2011 at 11:48 amStigmata25

    @Alec… But, I like Cheese. MMMMM Cheddar.