Nearly three weeks have passed since the end of exams, and while I haven't posted so much as a snippet here since, it's been a good month for anime so far. The second season of Darker Than Black
is even better than I'd expected, and Hanasaku Iroha
is a pleasant surprise among a flock of less than stellar-looking new shows.
An even bigger surprise, though, is the posting of both dubbed seasons of Birdy the Mighty: Decode
on hulu. I loved the hell out of this show when I watched the subtitled version nearly a year ago, and seeing that Funimation's put the English dub up, for however short a time, was an extremely nice start to my morning.
Decode follows a (space!) Federation agent named, well, Birdy
. During an undercover investigation of a (space!) fugitive named Geega, Birdy makes the common rookie mistake of punching a high school student in half. To save his life, Birdy lends him her body, and the two end up leading a double life; the student, Tsutomu Senkawa
, spends his days surviving high school and the perils of young love, while Birdy occasionally takes control to hunt down (space!) fugitives. Inevitably, their separate lives become inextricably tangled, and by the end of the first season, both end up struggling to save the world from certain doom.
While the story is enjoyable and the characters are endearing, the show stands out more for its smooth animation and distinctive musical style, both of which play a huge part in making the plentiful fight scenes more exciting than the average fare. Birdy does most of her inline skating and alien punching (these two activities are not mutually exclusive) to some pretty epic orchestral tunes.
Which was all very fine and good in Japanese, but how does the English dub hold up? Well, long story short--it's good so far. The principal voice actors all do a great job, and while I wouldn't call their performance uniformly better than that of their Japanese counterparts, I certainly wouldn't call it worse, either. My favorite out of the bunch, at least in the episodes I've watched this morning, is probably Tsutomu himself, whose voice actor brings a fun mixture of honesty and snark to much of his dialogue.
Birdy the Mighty: Decode is a very good series, and putting the dubbed version up will hopefully give newcomers an incentive to give the show a chance. You can find the first episode here on hulu
, or here on YouTube