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DVD Review

Shakugan No Shana
Volume 2


Starring (voice): Rie Kugimiya, Satoshi Hino, Ayako Kawasumi and Hitomi Nabatame
RRP: £15.99
Certificate: 12
Available 07 July 2008

Had Yuji Sakai turned a different corner his life may have remained that of a high school kid, but Sakai did turn that corner and his life changed forever. What do you do if you discover that rather than being human you are little more than a shell, a shell destined to fade away, as you are nothing more than a replacement for an already dead person? Sakai is about to find out...

So were up to Volume 2 of Shakugan No Shana and another four episodes of this romantic magic thriller, which continues to remain above average. It’s not that the show offers anything spectacularly original but what the show does, it does well.

Episode five: Respective Thoughts and Shana is found by Yuji following her fight with Margery. Her feelings are still in turmoil, so she refuses help from Yuji. At school Yuji is approached by Kazumi for a date. Above the city a mysterious man watches over the city as one after another the flames, the shells of the dead humans, are snuffed out. By chance Yuji and his date run into the corpse collector, a crimson denizen who recognizes Yuji’s real state as a Mystes and warns him that the city is going to be destroyed by Friagne.

Episode six: Complication, Invocation, Confrontation. With his new found knowledge about the fate of the city, Yuji decides that he has to do something. Meanwhile Shana’s people try to persuade her to dispose of Yuji; her determination to kill him is only interrupted by the commencement of Friagne’s plans to devour the whole city. Shana’s attempts to stop Friagne’s plans are interrupted by Yuji’s arrival which then gets him captured.

Episode seven: The Two Flame Hazes, and things are starting to hot up with Margery still on the trail of the soul collector, Rammie, through her hatred of all the Crimson Denizens. After their success at stopping the city from being devoured Shana agrees to train Yuji for further fights, but it would seem that a showdown between Shana and Margery seems inevitable.

Episode eight: The Beautiful Goblet, and the battle between Margery’s hatred and Shana’s sense of duty begins. Although the majority of the show is given over to the fight, some of the secrets which are contained within Yuji are revealed. Apparently he’s the Midnight Lost Child, no idea what that means yet, but we’ll stay tuned to find out.

There are some really nice things about the show; the English dub is well above average and up there with the Japanese version, which is provided here with subtitles. The mood and tone are well supported by the rather strange musical score. The style of animation retains much of the look of the manga with big eyes and minimal facial features.

The disc is let down with its minimal amount of extras, just a textless ending sequence a couple of trailers and the DVD credits.


Charles Packer

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