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volume 3 issue 12

In This Issue

Contents 2
Features 3
Chasing Otakuism 8
Anime Briefs 9
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Love Hina: Christmas Movie
Bilingual DVD
75 minutes
Ken Akamatsu
Star Child Records
TV Tokyo
Production, I.G.
The perfect holiday movie for any holiday season.
Overall Rating:

Animefringe Reviews:
Love Hina: Christmas Movie
By Adam Arnold

There's only so much It's a Wonderful Life that one person can take before the holiday rut hits them. So before you pop in that copy of that holiday classic Pokemon: Pikachu's Winter Vacation for the fourth year in a row, how about picking up something mama, papa, Billy, Jenny Penny, and Uncle Ned can get a kick out of? Treat them to Love Hina's Christmas Movie!

A little bit of fan service can go along way this holiday season and the good folks at Bandai sure know how to dish out the holiday cheer. For those not in the know, Love Hina started as a manga and turned into an anime phenomenon that spawned an onslaught of action figures, video games, trading cards, and tons of other merchandise... including cookies!

Being the fanatical fan that I am, I find this special to be one of the best and most original of all the episodes produced. Unlike Episode 25, which is included as an extra on this DVD, the Christmas Movie isn't a cut and dry condensed adaptation of the manga. The characters are given time to go through all their motions, have inner turmoil, and best of all, the slap-stick is toned down just a notch making this one show that virtually anyone will enjoy.

Worried about spoiling the series? Well, sadly this volume will resolve a number of threads left hanging from the TV series that this volume takes place after. But don't let that stop you from popping this baby in when your family comes to gather for whatever holiday festivities they happen to celebrate.

Just give your relatives a friends a simple rundown of the series like something along these lines; Keitaro Urashima is a prep school student who is trying to get into Tokyo University because of this promise he made as a little kid. He happens to be the landlord of an all girl's dormitory and virtually all the girls have the hots for him. Simple as that.

All that being said, the movie, or rather, special, picks up with Keitaro, Naru, and Mutsumi cramming for their upcoming exams. Christmas is fast approaching and Keitaro is working hard to earn enough cash to get a little something for everyone. But Naru happens upon Keitaro while he's on the job and promptly takes his lack of concern for his entrance exams as a sign he just doesn't care. As you can guess, things go out of control from there.

And if that weren't enough, there's also the special 25th episode of the TV series included on the DVD as well. That episode is devoted solely to Hinata House's resident samurai girl, Motoko Aoyama. Though the story is a bit rushed, the episode helps to flesh out Motoko's lacking back-story like no other.

Other than the episode, there is also the textless ending of the New Year's segment taken from the tail portion of the Christmas Movie. And included with the DVD is an insert that acts like a little 2003 calendar that has some of the resident's birthdays circled. If you didn't know Motoko's birthday was December 1 or that Keitaro's birthday was January 5, then you do now.

Do yourself a favor, go to the store and snap up a copy of this DVD before the holiday season is over. It might say it's a Christmas Movie, but you'll want to watch anytime you need some holiday cheer.

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