Love Hina-Volume 6: And the Winner is... (2000)
Main Menu Audio & Animation
|Year Of Production||2000|
|Running Time||86:32 (Case: 100)|
|RSDL / Flipper||No/No||Cast & Crew|
|Region Coding||4||Directed By||Yoshiaki Iwasaki|
|Pan & Scan/Full Frame||Full Frame||
English Dolby Digital 2.0 (224Kb/s)
Japanese Dolby Digital 2.0 (224Kb/s)
|Widescreen Aspect Ratio||None|
|Video Format||576i (PAL)|
|Original Aspect Ratio||1.33:1||Miscellaneous|
|Annoying Product Placement||No|
|Action In or After Credits||Yes, next episode title|
Parting is such sweet sorrow.
So we've reached the last volume of Love Hina. That's a shame, because it's been so much fun. Still, it's important to get closure on the plot-lines that have been running so long. Who will Keitaro end up with: Naru? Mutsumi? maybe even Shinobu? Someone else? Will Keitaro, Naru, and Mutsumi get into Tokyo U? And who was the little girl to whom Keitaro made his promise so long ago? Who is the mysterious new girl who is following them around? Is Mutsumi really as much of a ditz as she seems? Will Tamago end up as turtle soup? Why is the sky blue? These questions may (or may not) get answered in this volume. Well, to be fair, some of them will get answered in this volume, and some won't (yeah, I included the question about the sky just to confuse things — is that a mean thing to do?).
This is Love Hina volume 6. I recommend reading, at the very least, my review of the first volume before reading this one. You might want to read reviews of the second, third, fourth, and fifth volumes, too.
It's strange: the girl called Mutsumi (consistently!) on this disc has been called Mitsumi on previous discs. I'll follow the name used here, but it does seem odd. By the way, it is Mutsumi who is on the front cover, right under the volume sub-title "and the winner is..." — is that meant as a hint, or a misdirection? (I ain't tellin'!)
The four episodes on this disc are:
These episodes have slightly shorter titles than earlier ones, but they are still much longer than most series.
It's rather sweet how several of the girls are determined to ensure that Keitaro ends up with the right girl, even if their opinions differ as to who the right girl might be.
Naru is developing rather a good place-kick — she can boot Keitaro into the middle of next week just as easily as she can punch him. Just as well, considering that everyone else seems to have given up the sport of belting him. Where's the fun if Keitaro doesn't get thumped through the sky several times each episode?
Motoko doesn't get much of a look-in in these episodes, which is a shame, because she's one of the more complex and interesting characters. It may interest you to know that there is a 25th episode tucked into the Love Hina Christmas Special disc (no, I don't know when / if we will be seeing that disc), and it is almost completely concerned with Motoko.
All I'll say about the resolving of loose ends is that the ending is fairly satisfactory, but neatly leaves room for sequels. That's nice. Oh, and the closing credits for the last episode are cute.
This DVD transfer is presented in an aspect ratio of 1.33:1. It is not 16x9 enhanced. That is the original aspect ratio, which is exactly what we want.
The image is sharper than any previous volume, making this the most attractive of the lot — that's impressive. There's no film grain, and no low-level noise.
Colour is wonderful, not always fully saturated, but that's the style of this series — they show the occasional deeply saturated colour to prove they can, but most of it is coloured in more subtle shades — lovely stuff. There are no colour-related artefacts. This disc shows far less ringing than the previous discs, reducing the problem to an occasional artefact, rather than a near-constant feature.
There are no film artefacts.
There is some aliasing and dot crawl on the black lines bordering characters, but it is somewhat less than any previous disc. It's certainly not gone — you'll notice it quite often — but there are scenes without it, which is certainly not the case on previous discs. There's no moire, and no MPEG artefacts.
There are two subtitle tracks. The first subtitles only signs. The second provides full subtitles of the dialogue, plus the signs. The subtitles seem well-timed, and accurate. They are in the traditional yellow, but in an unusual and somewhat less chunky font — quite easy to read.
The disc is single-sided and single-layered. All the episodes together take less than 90 minutes, so they fit comfortably onto the single layer.
The soundtrack is provided in English and Japanese, as we expect for an anime title. Both soundtracks are Dolby Digital 2.0, not surround encoded, which is a reasonable presentation of a television track. I listened to both soundtracks in full.
The English dialogue is clear and readily understood. The Japanese dialogue sounds just as clear. This is possibly the first series I prefer to watch in Japanese with subtitles — you can blame the occasional mis-translation, plus the horrible choice of accent for Kitsune, for that.
Koichi Korenaga's score suits the show well. Ritsuko Okazaki's theme songs are distinctive, and difficult to dislodge from the mind, even for a non-Japanese-speaker — I find myself whistling them at strange times.
The surrounds and subwoofer are not called upon by this soundtrack. There's reasonable bass in the soundtrack, so your sub may receive some redirected bass if your bass management is working.
|Surround Channel Use|
The usual extras are on this disc.
The menu is animated with music. It offers the episodes (by number), setup, and extras — simple and functional.
This gives us a short bio for a character, plus seven images of the character. This disc has bios for Mutsumi (sometimes Mitsumi) Otohime, Haruka Urashima (Keitaro's aunt), and Sarah (sometimes Sara) MacDougall (Seta's foster daughter). That's more than usual.
The same trailer again.
Yet another new selection of trailers:
NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.
The Region 1 disc was released near the end of 2002. The Region 4 was released in February 2003. The two discs hold the same episodes, but the Region 4 disc has rather more extras (that's unusual). And it has nicer artwork, including the right logo (the R1 got a strange, and not really appropriate, logo foisted on it by the network — you can see it on the trailer).
Judging by reviews, the R1 has a very good transfer. It even sounds slightly better than the R4, but the Region 4 discs are very good, and no strain on the eyes to watch. Once more, I suspect that you can easily be happy with either, but the R4 is cheaper, and locally made (if you're in Australia).
The closing volume of a charming and very funny series.
The video quality is very good, except for a fair bit of aliasing.
The audio quality is good.
The extras are limited.
|DVD||Pioneer DV-S733A, using Component output|
|Display||Sony VPH-G70 CRT Projector, QuadScan Elite scaler (Tripler), ScreenTechnics 110. Calibrated with Video Essentials. This display device is 16x9 capable.|
|Audio Decoder||Built in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Video Essentials.|
|Speakers||Front Left, Centre, Right: Krix Euphonix; Rears: Krix KDX-M; Subwoofer: Krix Seismix 5|