The Story of Saiunkoku: Season 1, Part 2

The Story of Saiunkoku

On DVD: 
Tuesday, December 16, 2008

So apparently the societal pressures and semi-political intrigue of a young female, Shurei Hong, rising through the ranks of government makes for a worthwhile anime series. At least, it must be worth something, as The Story of Saiunkoku does exist on DVD and as such, represents the hard work of team of animators, voice actors and everyone else who is essential to bringing a TV show to life.

I confess that it’s of little-to-no interest to me. I freely admit that I’m likely not in the right demographic for this volume of the saga. As such, I suppose my opinion on this set should be taken with a few grains of salt. But when you’re talking about a show with a translated title of “Tale of the Land of Colored Clouds,” there’s probably not going to be much to hold the attention of us dudes. I mean, why not “Happy Furry Koala Bear Crapping Rainbows of Love and Joy?”

But enough of my dreams. Here’s what this set has to offer: 3 DVDs, spanning episodes 16-27 from season 1. The extras include, I kid you not, DVD credits and previews of other Geneon anime series titles. You can also watch it in Japanese, with or without English subtitles, if you so desire. Beyond that, all you get are the episodes.

And when I mentioned political intrigue earlier, I’m talking about the sort that centers on filling out the right forms and making connections with the right upper officials and hoping for a new appointment for advancement and whatnot. Real edge-of-your seat stuff. The animation itself is fairly standard for anime fare: large eyes, sharply drawn faces (chins, noses, ears), bright colors, and motion lines any time something dramatic happens. You get the idea.

As I said before, there has to be a market, however small, for stuff like this. But good grief, this bores me to tears. Hopefully it will evoke a different emotion for you, should you be brave enough to give this a try.

Jeremy Hunt
Review by Jeremy Hunt
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