Wednesday, March 4, 2015

OBSCURE O.V.A.S, *Elf Princess Rane

Otherwise known as Fairy Princess Ren, this 2-episode series was intended to be longer, but was cut short like a lot of OVAs from the 90s. It was an original anime not based on an existing manga or other material, but was full of what is commonly referred to as "gag manga" references.

Treasure-seeking teenager Go is on a field trip at a temple looking for a lead to the ancient treasure of what was called Salamandara, but proceeds to fall off a 30-story building and meeting a tiny elf named Rane who speaks in a jigsaw of phrases that Go and his friend Mari can't make out. Go believes Rane's presence is part of some destiny written down in an ancient magazine, and sets out with her to go back to the temple to look for the treasure. Mari in turn comes across a miniature witch named Leen the same size as Rane, although not apparently an elf herself since her ears aren't pointy. All this while feng shui corporate businessman Mr. Takuma has plans for turning the entire city(run by Mari's dad)into a giant amusement park, plus trying to win the heart of Mari herself who seems to have eyes for Go. Rane and Leen are each hunting for a treasure called the Four Hearts, even if there is some serious communication breakdowns between Rane and Go at first, although Leen has no trouble Mari understanding her they first meet. Speaking of which, Takuma has a language all his own that only his loving assistant Natsuki(one of Go's sextuplet sisters)can understand. This leads to a disastrous visit to a hot springs mountain for Mari's birthday where Go unwittingly confesses his feelings for her, even though they still haven't found the treasures yet.

Directed by Akitaroh Daichi, whose other off-the-wall titles include Animation Runner Kuromi and Jubei-chan, shows his chops here with his bombastic sense of comedic timing. The script is really all over the place, and very hard to keep up with upon first viewing. The dub for this was above the normal par by Coastal Studios which was produced similarly like their dub of Shinesman which does have some "Americanzation" of the dialogue but still hysterical for even a novice anime fan. The only drawback is that their isn't more of this past the second episode, so at least check out for some serious laughs!

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