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DNAngel Volume 4: Magical Girls

DNAngel Volume 4: Magical Girls
Review Date:
Reviewed By: Azure

Released By: ADV Films UK

Age Rating: PG

Region: 2 - UK
Volume: 4 of 7
Length: 100 minutes
Subtitles: English
Audio: English 2.0 Stereo
English Dolby Digital 5.1
Risa and Saehara are caught in a trap set for Dark; Daisuke has to travel after them to a familiar place. Wild girl Mio Hio also joins Daisukeís school and the moment she arrives she sets her heart on poor Daisuke who hasnít get the faintest clue on what to do.
This volume of DNAngel is decidedly romantic in tone as Darks exploits as a phantom thief takes a backseat to Daisukeís love life, which is getting increasingly convoluted as the story goes on. Things are shaken up somewhat by the introduction of the bubbly and cute Towa and the decidedly irritating Mio Hio. The gags about Mioís fascination with Mio arenít particularly new and call to mind Rumiko Takahashiís Shampoo and Lum. Where Mioís role is important is that she begins to stir up Daisukeís relationship with the twins as they are forced to confront how they really feel about Daisuke. However, I found it interesting that even a comedy character like Mio has a part to play in the plot and there are several scenes where Mio switches to a cooler persona, or else gazes at a strange necklace which hints that thereís something more to come

The animation isnít up to the high standards set in earlier episodes but it probably doesnít matter as much as it might as this volume the story revolves around the characters feelings rather than grand landscapes or battle sequences. It also feels like the pace is getting ready to change, several key plot points are hinted at but itís only at the end of the volume that certain plot points are confirmed and spoken aloud. It doesnít really effect enjoyment as these episodes are all about feelings and actually work surprisingly well together considering DNAngel aired weekly in Japan. I have a feeling though things will change rapidly in the next volume, since 4 marks just over the halfway point.

This volume includes ADV voice actor commentary, the next part in the DNangel talk series as well as some music videos. The music videos seem mostly comprised of pans across the landscape with quiet piano music, but stay with it as there are several very sweet vocal songs at the end. Bewarned though they feature footage from later episodes that may be considered spoilers.

DNAngel at itís heart is a sweet romance with a fantastic setting, the focus is on the feelings of the characters rather than action marking it out as a strong shoujo title. I imagine this increased focus on romance may put off some viewers who enjoyed Darkís exploits, but thatís really missing the point. If you like romantic and sweet sit down with DNAngel, some snacks, perhaps a few tissues and enjoy. Fans of action and destruction look elsewhere.

Rating: 8/10
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