Hayate the Combat Butler News

Hayate the Combat Butler is a franchise comprised of 1 movie, 4 anime series, 1 manga series
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I've wanted to own something Hayate the Combat Butler related ever since I saw the series years ago, but due to the large episode count, the price of the US release was always more than I'm willing to pay for a barebones US release (8 volumes that usually retail for $25-$35) and while the price of importing was oddly less (3 volumes priced at $57), it was only so because it too was a barebones release, which didn't appeal to me. When I heard that there was going to be a theatrical film, it's eventual BD released seemed like it would be the perfect combination of price and extras that I was looking for. About after first hearing of the project, it's arrived at my doorstep.

Specs

All the bells and whistles
All the bells and whistles

Media

  • BD with feature film including bonus footage
  • DVD with theatrical cut

Audio/Visual

  • 16:9 Video
  • JP Dolby True HD 5.1
  • JP Linear PCM Stereo
  • JP Dolby Digital Stereo
  • No Subtitles

On Disc Extras

  • Movie trailers/teasers
  • Commentary
  • Trailer for live-action series

Packaging

I sprung for the limited edition which comes in a nice BD-sized chipboard case that is very similar to NISA's Premium Editions in hardness and thickness. One minor complaint I have, however, is that is that a wrap-around flyer was shrinkwrapped to the release and it's spine looks prettier than the actual spine of the box. Once opened, there is no way to attach this to the set without using glue or tape, two options I would never do under any circumstances.

Bonus Items

Usually the best part about importing, this release does not disappoint. The first thing that you'd notice about the set if you saw it in person is how thick it is. This is because included with the release is an over 300 page storyboard book of the entire film. While less massive but still pretty sweet, the release includes a multipage booklet with interviews featuring manga creator Kenjirou Hata and anime character designer Hideto Komori. Rounding out the package was something I didn't even know would be included: a strip of film cells from the movie itself. I haven't seen the film yet so I don't know exactly how awesome mine is, I was pretty stoked that it includes Nagi, Hayate, and a third character with their faces shown and two other characters (I believe one of them is either Sakuya or Ayumu) with their backs to the camera. I've heard horror stories about people getting film strips that are nothing but the back of someone's head so I'm very excited about the one I received.

All In All

I'm totally satisfied with the release. I haven't watched the movie yet so I can't comment about it at all, but it's Hayate so I'm sure it will be fine. I love the extras and the packaging is really nice.

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It looks like the anime industry is pushing forward with more anime movies from Fullmetal Alchemist to Strike Witches. Now Hayate the combat butler will be getting it's own anime film. For those who don't know, the story follows a boy named Hayate who serves as a butler, bodyguard, confidante, and more to a girl named Nagi to pay off a 156,804,000-yen (about US$1.8-million) debt.
 
The film will be director by Hideto Komori, who done animation directing for Darker than Black and , studio Manglobe will be covering the animation, done work on Samurai Champloo and right now The World God Only Knows, and 
Yasuko Kobayashi, who done work on Casshern Sins, Claymore, and Shana, will be doing the scripting.  
 
From reading these guys past works and having knowledge of the Hayate's storyline, I have a good feeling for this film and hope that it will come over to over seas.
 
 Source:  http://www.animenewsnetwork.com/news/2010-12-03/hayate-the-combat-butler-gets-theatrical-anime-film
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Super Duper Mini Review

 The main cast of Mahoraba.
 The main cast of Mahoraba.

  Mahoraba ~Heartful days~ is an anime adaptaion of the manga, which was created by Akira Kojima.  The show was produced by J. C. Staff and directed by Shinichiro Kimura.  The show consists of 26 episodes.
 

Genres:

comedy, romance, slice of life
 

Plot Summary from Wikipedia

Shiratori Ryushi wants to become a children picture book writer, and he moves to an apartment, Narutaki-Sou (Narutaki Villa), in order to go to an art school in Tokyo. Narutaki-Sou is an old Japanese style one-story house which doesn't fit in urban scenery. The complex is owned by his mother's cousin and the manager of the apartment is his second cousin, Aoba Kozue. They met each other when they were children, although Shiratori doesn't remember much of it. Kozue is in the second grade of a high school attached to Aoba Junior College.

There are seven residents of Narutaki-Sou. The first, Chanohata Tamami, lives in room #1 and she is Kozue's childhood friend and best friend. Shiratori Ryushi, the main character of the series, resides in room #2. In room #3 resides Momono Megumi, a person who goes her own way in life. Kurosaki Sayoko and her daughter Asami, who is in the first grade of middle school, live in room #5. Finally, in room #6, Haibara Yukio lives with his puppet Johnny.

Narutaki-Sou is filled with characteristic and eccentric people. However, the most eccentric person is Kozue herself. She has a secret of which even she does not know; when she is shocked at something, her personality changes. Not knowing this, Ryushi moves to Narutaki-Sou to realize his dream.

Pros and Cons


Pros:
  • A wide variety of enjoyable characters.  From kind girls with multiple personalities, ocult lovers, drunks, womanizers, really lazy, to ventriloquists, they are all entertaining.
  • A very cute, colorful, and charming art style.
  • Loved the crayon story scenes shown through out the show.
  • Enjoyed the zany humor.
  • Loved the 4-panel comics in each episode.  They totally don't need to be there, but they are and they are enjoyable.

Cons:
  •  The animation quality can be bad at times.
 

Who is this for?

If you are a fan of lighthearted romantic comedies with a splash of slice of life like Love Hina or Hayate the Combat Butler, definitely check this one out.
 

Sources *SPOILERS*

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mahoraba
http://www.animenewsnetwork.com/encyclopedia/anime.php?id=4631

 
 
 
 

MANGA REVIEW *Added on October 26, 2010*

Just finished reading the manga of Mahoraba.  Without making this lengthy, I will keep it short.
 
The manga was a great read and totally worth it.  The manga was funny, heartwarming, sad, entertaining, and just plain fun.  Most of the anime episodes were taken from the manga.  Not 100% accurate, but they got the picture just right.  The manga is funnier more serious, and more entertaing then the anime.  I guess it's kinda hard to make a shonen romcom be serious at times since most of the time the humor is just crazy and over the top, but who cares, that's what makes shonen romcoms great.
 
It's a real shame that this and the anime adaptation hasn't been licensed by anyone outside of Japan.  Many fans of the genre are going to miss out on this great series because of that.
 
If you are a fan of the romcom genre, this is definitely worth reading.  If you have watched the anime and you liked it, you have to read this.
 
If you enjoyed shows like Love Hina, Hayate the Combat Butler, or similar shows, then this is worth checking out.

 
 

 
 

Don't forget to check out my ongoing blog for my Super Duper Mini Reviews and my written reviews.            :) 

What's a Super Duper Mini Review? Well, since I'm taking a break from written reviews, I decided to put a short list of what I liked and didn't like about the shows I watch.  For some info about the show like genre, plot summary, etc., I borrow (mainly copy and paste  :P) some info from Anime News Network, Wikipedia or the Anime Vice wiki.

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What's a Super Duper Mini Review?  Well, since I'm taking a break from written reviews, I decided to put a short list of what I liked and didn't like about the shows I review and put down some notes and fun facts as well.  For a little info about the show, I copy the Plot Summary from the Anime News Network pages and throw them in the review so the reader can be a little bit informed on what the bases of the show is about.  I also borrow some info from Wikipedia as well.

Super Duper Mini Review


 Pani Poni Dash!
 Pani Poni Dash!
  Pani Poni Dash! is an anime series based on the manga of the same name, Pani Poni.  The show was produced by GANSIS and Shaft and it was directed by Akiyuki Shinbo.  The show was aired in Japan in 2005.
 
Pani Poni Dash! is a comedy, parody show.
 
 
 
 
Plot Summary
 

The 11 year old Miyamoto Rebecca becomes the new teacher of a classroom which is full of weirdos. Despite her cute looks she's a little beast and can be pretty sarcastic and offensive. The school is not safe anymore now that she's in charge of a class and her students, Himeko, Ichijou, Rei and a white rabbit who took a liking to Rebecca help her to rough up the school and the neighbour-class with its teacher "ojiichan." 


---  Anime News Network
 

Pros:
  • A wacky cast of enjoyable characters that makes this show fun.  From Rebecca to Ichijou, they are all unique.
  • Very goofy and insane show.  Reminds me of Hayate the Combat Butler , Lucky Star, and My Bride is a Mermaid, and a little bit of Azumanga Daioh.
  • Super cute and colorful art style.
  • Tons, and tons or references to movies like Planet of the Apes, The Exorcist, to other things like Super Mario Bros. and Dragon Ball.
  • Really cool openings and endings.
  • Like other Shaft shows, the art style can be very stylish and unique.

 
Cons:
  • While the show does have a lot of references that are awesome, it's less enjoyable when you don't know them.  There were many that I didn't get and I was like "Ok?" and "I don't get it."  The fansubs I watched helped explain them, but it still would have been more enjoyable if I didn't have to read the little blurb for every reference they make.
  • Like a lot of comedy shows, there is no ongoing plot.  Most of the show is episodic.
 
 

While I didn't get many of the reference in the show, which is many, I still had a blast with Pani Poni Dash.
 
If you enjoyed shows like Lucky Star, Hayate the Combat Butler, My Bride is a Mermaid, or Azumanga Daioh, you will definitely get a kick out of this show.  Be prepared for all the references in the show, there are maaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaany.
 

 "I&squot;ll be back."
 "I'll be back."
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In the past few years of my life as an anime fan, I find myself watching more and more shows online. Sometimes it's a simulcast and other times it's something from an archive on sites like Hulu or Crunchyroll.  One problem, albeit an awesome one, is that these shows have huge archives of content to shift through.  In my search for content to watch, I always thought that it'd cool if some kindhearted otaku was out there gathering links for cool shows that I could watch right now.  Well, today I've decided to be the generous otaku that I've been searching for. 
 
Sorry, but everyone and their mom knows that you're online.
Sorry, but everyone and their mom knows that you're online.
Every week I plan (keyword being plan) on highlighting one or two shows that I'm watching or have seen that are also available legally online.  Ideally they'll be free to everyone, but if they aren't i'll be sure to make a note of it.  I'll try to avoid shows that I think are super popular because, in all honesty, these shows have more than enough eyes on them and don't really need yet another person pointing them out.  So that means, no Naruto, no One Piece, no Haruhi, etc.  It's cool if it does, but I don't really intend for this to introduce a new person to anime and make them a fan.  I'm trying to introduce anime fans to shows that they might not have seen or heard of.  So with no further ado... 
 

Jyu-Oh-Sei (Hulu Link)

The Basics 

Jyu-Oh-Sei is the tale of two kids who find themselves caught in a political situation that results in them being kidnapped and sent to an overgrown planet where survival of the fittest is law.  
 
Described in Anime
Bishounen pretty boys brutally fighting to the death on the Blue Gender planet while getting into Nana/True Tears relationships (with women, just in case you were wondering) when they aren't killing each other.  People make cold and lethal calculations that would make Lelouch or Light Yagami proud.  Oh yeah, and the last few episodes give the story an ending that about as "cheerful" as Saikano.  And yes, that "cheerful" is sarcasm.
 

Why I Like It 

Don't let the pretty boys fool you; they break faces and hearts with ease.
Don't let the pretty boys fool you; they break faces and hearts with ease.
This show somehow manages to balance two things that don't seem like they'd fit: super melodramatic and bittersweet romances with assassinations and battles to the death.  If you like violent/harsh anime this show has a lot to offer.  Important characters die, people get stabbed up on screen, it's not rare for a plant to rip someone in half and children fight to death.  Yet with all of that violence, the show still manages to work in these sweet little romances filled with tear jerker moments that keep you anticipating an eventual confession or official boyfriend/status.  It does both of these aspects well and it gives them equal screen time.  Even if you love one genre and hate the other, it never goes for too long without giving you something satisfying in either.  To top it all off it ends extremely bittersweet, which always floats my boat. 
 

Hyakko (Crunchyroll Link)

I figured I'd balance out the bittersweet and violent Jyu-Oh-Sei with something that's neither.  The first thing that came to my mind was Hyakko.  While it's not super unpopular or unknown, it's a title that I don't see mentioned too often.  

The Basics 

The series is a comedic slice-of-life story focused around four girls at a high school. 
 

Described in Anime 

Imagine if Haruhi Suzumiya and her gang of misfits attended the same school as Nagi Sanzenin.  Reduce the outlandishness (ie no talking tigers or aliens) and you have Hyakko.  
 

Why I Like It 

I'll be the first to admit it, Hyakko isn't reinventing the wheel and it includes about every stereotype character you can think of such as: 
  • The really assertive girl
  • The new girl who's overly nice
  • the super duper shy girl
  • the kid who sells photos of other students
  • the teacher with no control over their class
  • the rocker chick
  • the not so in the closet closet lesbian.
  • the guy who secretly likes one member of the main cast but is totally oblivious on how to talk to her
  • the rich and arrogant girl who really has a heart of gold
 
 The whole is greater than the sum of its parts... which is impressive considering how many parts this show has.
 The whole is greater than the sum of its parts... which is impressive considering how many parts this show has.
But the great thing is that the show seems to be totally aware of these character types and often parodies them or sets them up in really funny situations.  It never breaks the 4th wall but it seems to be totally aware of what it is and what it's doing.  Because each episode is broken up into small segments, all of the characters in the series get fleshed out and well developed, which is pretty amazing considering how short the series is and how many of them there are.  You get to see all of their quirks in detail as they interact with the main cast and after a few episodes I found myself eagerly anticipating what crazy situation they were going to find themselves in or what combination of characters were going to be in the next segment and how they'd clash with or play off of each other.
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*Possible Spoilers Ahead*
 
 
 Hayate the Combat Butler
 Hayate the Combat Butler
Next show on my anime train was Hayate no Gotoku aka Hayate the Combat Butler based on the manga of the same name.  It's a romance/comdey/slice of life/harem/parody show.  Dang, that's a lot of genres. There are two seasons for the show, Hayate no Gotoku! and Hayate no Gotoku!! 2nd Season.  The first season spanned 52 episode and the second season spanned 25 episode and 1 OVA.  I should also mention that SynergySP made the first season and J.C.Staff made the second season.  Now that I got that out of the way, it's time for the review!
 
Hayate no Gotoku tells the story about Hayate Ayasaki paying off his debt to Nagi Sanzenin which happens to be 1.5 million yen.  Well, here is how it happened.  Hayate was given the 1.5 million debt from his parents.  One day the debt collectors were wanted the money and offered a deal to Hayate, but he refused and ran.  That same night at the park he runs into Nagi, who he wanted to kidnap and ask for ransom money, but it completly fails.  Because of this, Nagi completely miss understands and thinks it's a confession of love.  Hayate goes to the phone and asks for ransom money, but he messes up and hangs up.  After this Hayate notices that Nagi is being kidnapped.  Hayate asks a girl for her bike so he can catch up to their care.  Lucky for Hayate, he can ride a bike just as fast as any car in the world.  At first he just stops in front of the car, but the kidnappers just hit him.  Then Hayate catches up to them and and leaps onto the hood of the car with an evil glare in his eyes.  After that, the kidnappers give up and give Nagi back.  Nagi offers Hayate an award and asks for a new job before he passes out from his injuries.
 Hayate has gone evil!
 Hayate has gone evil!

 
The next day Hayate wakes up at Nagi's mansion, but he thinks he is actually dead and went to heaven.  After soaking in the huge indoor bath, his wounds re-open and he passes out.  After he wakes up, Nagi and Maria (Nagi's maid) explain that he is their new butler.  Now he has his new job, he is eager is demonstarte his abilities so he ends up cleaning the whole mansion and making it sparkling clean.  Hayate ends up in the study/library and ends up finding Nagi's self drawn manga and he refers to it as a picture diary.  After Nagi sees this, she get's very upset and kicks him out.  Now Hayate believes that he has been fired and wonders off.  Shortly after wondering he runs into the debt collectors and ends up being kidnapped.  It seems like the end of the world until Nagi shows up, in a really bad disguse, and pays the debt collectors Hayate's debt.  Since the debt is now payed of to the debt collectors, he is now in debt to Nagi for 1.5 million yen.
 
 Nagi Sanzenin
 Nagi Sanzenin
So that's how the show starts off and that's the basics of the show.  Hayate ends up becoming Nagi's butler and now he has to pay Nagi back 1.5 million yen, which will take him about 40 years.  Now one to my thoughts about both seasons.
 
Let's just put it this way, I fucking loved this show.  It's super over the top and crazy through out, well, the first season anyways.  The second season wasn't as crazy and over the top, but it was still very enjoyable and goofy.  During the course of the show lots of goofy stuff happens.  Near the beginning of the show Hayate has to bring Nagi her lunch, which she forgot.  So Hayate dresses up like Solid Snake and sneaks into the school to give her her lunch.  Then fast forward to a later part of the show here Hayate has to enter a combat butler tournament.  In this tournament many butlers face of against each other.  Luckily for us, Haytate does end and he doesn't put that much effort into it at all.  For all of his matches his opponents end up forfeiting the match in so shape or form.  That's one reason I loved the show.  Just so much crazy stuff happening and lots of parodies of other shows like Dragon Ball Z and a reference to One Piece.  Another goofy element is the censorship for the first season.  Sure there is an uncensored version on DVD, but the censors make it even funnier.  At times it shows this little pink dude that holds up an sign that says "You can't see this" or something in that nature.  There are also many moments when the show breaks " the fourth wall" which make the show even better.
 
There are tons of great side characters as well for the show.  We have Maria the maid, Klaus the head butler, Tama the English speaking tiger, Ayumu, girl who has a big crush of Hayate, Sakuya, Nagi's cousin who loves jokes, Wataru, Nagi's setup future husband, Hinagiku, the student council president who also loves Hayate, and many more!  While there are lots of side characters, my favorites are easily Maria and Klaus.  Maria is Nagi's maid and she is only 17.  See is so smart that she graduated from high school at 13.  Then we have Klaus.  I don't know why but, I just love this guy.  On funny thing about him is that he actually fell in love with Hayate, who he thought was an angle.
 Maria in a sexy bikini.
 Maria in a sexy bikini.

 
Besides the side characters, Hayate and Nagi as easily the stars for the show for me.  Hayate is always happy even though he has to work for the rest of his life paying off his debt.  He will do anything for his master and will accomplish anything for her.  Then we have the Nagi, the girl who loves to play video games, read manga, watch anime, and skip school all the time.  Now that sounds like the girlfriend for me, haha.
 
I guess this raps up my review for Hayate no Gotoku.  Both seasons were fantastic all though I did enjoy the first season more then the second.  If you are looking for one goofy ass show that will entertain you for a while, this is a must watch.
 
My Score - 5 out of 5.
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In which I review various manga I've stumbled across in little snippets.

Yakuza Girl--It has nothing to do with Yakuza at all except for the name. However, if you thought that Ikkitousen (or "Battle Vixens" in the US) could be so much better if only there was more explicit sex and less coherent plot development, then this manga is perfect for you. Of course, this also means that the chances of this manga appearing on American bookstore shelves are slim to nil.

Black Cat--Kinda like the GetBackers, except the guy with the evil eye later has a magic briefcase, and whenever you hear Train's name you almost expect "Drops of Jupiter" to start playing in the background. Dragged on a little too much, and the cast got really convoluted near the end. Dances on the line of DBZ-syndrome without completely crossing it, but the mere fact that I stuck with it till the end (with several breaks, sure, but still...) as opposed to, say, Bleach means that there's probably something I enjoyed about it.

The World God Only Knows--A high school kid who prefers dating-sim-game girls to real ones ends up getting drafted by the cleaner, newer version of Hell to suck out evil spirits from girls in the real world by kissing them. How convenient that most of the girls he has to help in the real world are similar to the archetypes from his games. Still, I actually found it kind of amusing.

Seikon no Qwaser--It's like Fullmetal Alchemist, except the Alchemists are called "Qwasers", they are only able to manipulate one element (with a few exceptions), and they get their powers from sucking someone's breasts instead of drawing a circle on the ground. There's also some plot involving the Russian Orthodox church, but if the last sentence caught your eye, chances are good that the plot doesn't matter.

Hayate the Combat Butler--Pokes fun at various shonen manga, but at the same time, the massive amount of in-jokes can get kind of confusing. There also seems to be a small pattern where Hayate meets a new girl, they start crushing on him, and he ends up too focused on his job to notice, then this cycle repeats with a different girl. Other than that, I found it somewhat entertaining.

Feel free to comment, or add your own.
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