My-HiME Review


Messenger_Boy Mikoto Grim_Reflection Element Nagi Kagutsuchi
      My-HiME (or Mai-HiME) is the story of Fuuka Academy and the students there in. I can't even start with "strange things happen when Mai and her brother Takumi transfer there." Forget that, the ferry taking them to the school ends being cut in two and all the passengers in life rafts. Mai finds herself caught inside a fight between two girls, both of whom have powers unlike normal humans. As she is trying to help one of the girls, the ship goes down, dragging them both under with it. When she come to, she and the other girl are inside a burning patch of grass with a trench leading up to it from the water and surrounded by curious students in uniform.

      Welcome to Fuuka Academy.

      Though I'm sure many of you understand the title, I may as well explain. HiME is an acronym in the show for "Highly-advanced Materializing Equipment." Well, actually, -hime is the suffix used in the Japanese language to denote "princess." We pair that with the main character's name, Mai, (pronounced "my") means "dancing" in Japanese. There are any number of puns present. Whether you mean "my princess", Mai as a princess, Mai as one of these battle trained warriors, dancing princess refering to high-speed combat, or a possessive to say that this young warrior should be yours; all of these fit the show to some extent. Oh, we are just getting started.

      There's certainly no shortage of characters, though quite a few more female than male. Mai, her brother Takumi and his roommate Akira, Mikoto and Natsuki, Haruka, Akane, Shizuru, Yukino, Aoi, Chie, Tate, Miyu, Reito...ah forget it. There,' too many of them. Even so, a full half of the characters shown in the opening are never given a name or seen speaking. I suppose these people existed in the manga, but there was never time for them in the TV series.

      The story gets quite grim. It's a very good case study in what happens when you trust no one. You don't get peace, but mutually assured destruction. As for the plot, it flows fairly well. There are a few points in the later third that I thought stretched and the last episode had several holes in it, but over all it was very well done.

      The artwork was excellent. I still love bright colors, in case you haven't noticed by now. The lighting and fire effects were especially good. I loved it, I just really don't feel up to describing it.

      However, the part that really got my attention in this series was the music. Simple everyday music, tense drama, powerful character themes, and wild combat music are all there. Single part music, acoustic guitar, symphonic, and chorus styles are all used. I am truly impressed.

      I'd find it easy to recommend this show to a wide audience. It has its action, romance (well sort of), science fiction, and well done character development. Overall, this is an excellent show.

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