Negima?! (episode 1):-
Negi Springfield is the son of a famous magician called "Thousand Master". The opening scenes show Negi's Dad fighting with a female magician. The animation quality is super: richly detailed backgrounds, nice editing, moody colouring. Things started to go downhill for me as soon as this scene ended and the captions came up. I'm hoping that someone has fixed the translation, which says, among other things, "there is not a person to know what he does where as of now."
This might just as well apply to the original author or the anime director. Negi, having graduated from magic academy is now starting wizardry training at the prestigious all-girl Mahora Academy in Japan. The fact that he is apparently only 10 years old doesn't seem to stop the girls from getting a crush on their new "professor". Negi also wears pince-nez, possibly an anime first for me. Maybe this was chosen to make him look intelligent, but to me he looks like a shemale dwarf.
Negi has a good heart and is prepared to travel to the other side of the world to further his training, very aware that his old man was a famous magi. He also has a pet white ermine, called Chamo, which mysteriously appears on Negi's shoulder when they arrive at the school. In the sampler DVD I saw, Chamo sounds like a black pimp, complete with bad-ass attitude and language. I think it's a safe bet that Chamo will fill the role of comic-relief sidekick character in this series. I'd be tempted to turn the stoat into a coat and wear it on those cold Japanese winter evenings. Negi's magical abilities must be kept a secret from the foxy babes at Mahora, although he is spotted by one girl fixing the front tooth of Chamo after they are both trampled by the girls on their way to class. There is also a female vampire loose on the campus.
I suppose part of the problem I have with this first episode is that Negi is obviously so much younger and smaller than anyone else, and he acts that way too. Sure, he might have a genetic predisposition to being a great wizard, but he seems to be about 5 years too young for me to take him seriously. Would a class of 31 teenage girls swoon at having a 10 year old "professor", or would they be more likely to treat him as a joke?
It's pretty obvious that this will be an action comedy of some sort, with the various girls doing various things which will cause Negi grief, but having a pre-pubescent male dwarf lead character rules out any of the romantic comedy which made series like Tenchi and Ranma and El Hazard so much fun. No doubt the stoat will reappear magically on Negi's shoulder from time to time to make some smart-arse comment, but I just don't find the scenario convincing at all.
The facetious voice over at the end of this first episode says to "look forward to the next episode with nail-biting desperation!", but it just seems fake to me. I'd look at another few episodes just to get a better sense of where the story is heading, but I'd probably rather make myself a cheese sandwich.
Too hot for eBay!
As I was sorting through items for listing on eBay, I came across some adult product which I couldn't put there. Here is a list of those anime products. Please be aware that you must be over 18 years of age to order any of these items from me! I only have one of each of these. They are available now for immediate delivery.
Blu-ray anime DVDs
For those of you into the latest and greatest technology, here's a list of anime available on Blu-ray in the US and Australia. I will be updating this list about every two months to try to keep it current (last updated May 26, 2011).
Oz anime permanent price reductions!
The good folks at Madman have announced some permanent price reductions on selected Australian anime titles. Sure, these ones have been around for a while, but saving some money is a good thing, right