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Tuesday, November 20, 2012

InuYasha: The Final Act, Set One Review It's Been More Than Dog Years

Kagome! InuYasha!
Kagome! InuYasha!
Kagome! InuYasha!
Kagome! InuYasha!

InuYasha: The Final Act, Set One

It's been too long since the last time I've heard those names screamed out loud. Viz finally brings the closing arc of InuYasha dubbed for the US audience. All my old friends off Toonami of years past are a bit older, but in no way wiser as this romactionedy (romantic-action-comedy) goes back to it's style of having terrifying demonic monsters eating people and worse, but still having time to have squabbles about love.

InuYasha, Shippo, Sango, Miroku and Naraku are all back with their... wait a second that's not Kagome!!! Dearest readers, I have the grave news of telling you the voice of Kagome has been replaced, Kira Tozer replaced Moneca Stori. The other voice acting news is Sesshomaru's voice has been replaced by Michael Daingerfield. You'll notice right away if you're a fan. I almost thought they got a new InuYasha at first, but the new voice actors do a good job. It be great if we could have gotten all the original voice cast, but even Tenchi Muyo couldn't get Ryoko's voice actress to come back, it happens.

Still sad about it though.
As I wiped away my Otaku tears, I knew they were tears of joy. Joy of having a story where someone's organs can been stolen, trees melting people and constant love entanglement would have my face changing from having a gaping hole in it to laughing and looking at awe and awesome fights scenes.

Events take place right after the last episode of the first series, so you should know the show before stepping in or it might be a little confusing. Inuyasha and his friends are still out to kill Naraku for destroying their lives, while Naraku constantly plans on making himself stronger with pieces of the Shikon Jewel. Inuyasha has the Japanese way of new monsters attacking each week as pieces of the Jewel powers up normal demons or Narku sends demons to kill him.

Two themes stand out in this arc: powering up and people dying for good, in some cases only slightly dying, it is InuYasha. Powering up is a normal goal for an anime series, but everyone sort of got a new technique or more powerful attack in this arc. Sesshomaru's is by far the most insane as he can now cut to the underworld. It looks like he's cutting into the fabric of the universe as his attacks cut reality and suddenly you see the cosmos temporarily. This of course is made fun of immediately in a story where Sesshomaru visits his mother. It seems like an old sitcom story of his Mom breaking his chops and that she talks to much. It'll make you laugh at how little she cares for her own son's life and doesn't remember Jaken's name.

Sesshomaru is but one character that gains new powers or strengthens themselves in odd ways. Naraku goes about doing it the grossest way by absorbing demons and incarnations of himself. For a show that can be so light hearted I forget how gross it can get. One scene with Naraku's head with spikes going through it while inside of a monster talking to a baby should leave you with some night terrors.

Just have to remind everyone how nice it is to hear Naraku's evil calm collective voice putting people down. Naraku is one of the villains you love to hate.

You might hate this arc as a few characters are permanently killed off. I won't say who, but maybe steer clear of the ending previews of next episodes, which ruin those moments. Maybe add a spoiler alert over them Viz. This is all leading to the story's finale, it is getting quite intense and once again Naraku seems way too overpowered to be stopped.

My favorite episode might have been "Meido Zangetsuha" which had nothing to do with Sesshomaru's new technique, but InuYasha and the gang being caught up in fox demon trials. This means nothing, but headaches for InuYasha as Shippo pranks him hardcore as well as other little demons. It reminded me of the three little monkey episode. Kagome acts like such a Mom telling InuYasha to calm down even though these horrible little demons are landing boulders on his head. Miroku is flirting with real foxy ladies to Sango's bitter chagrin.

Another story that stood out was the powering up of Goryomaru, another powerful incarnation of Naraku, in "The Great Holy Demon Spirit’s Test". Goryomaru does so by getting into a fight with two demon brothers who are entangled with one another and are trying to kill one another. I don't just mean in a fight, these brothers have their bodies entangled, oh and they can fly and shoot fire and electricity separately. They only stop fighting for a second to fight Goryomaru. The lose and are devoured in a very gross fashion by Goryomaru. After that Goryomaru's attacks Sesshomaru with a spike, lightning and fire attack all at once. Talk about powered up!

As for the Blu-rays and extras themselves everything was of great quality, picture and sound were without any hiccups. Extras had character design notes, but nothing to amazing.

If you're a fan of the InuYasha series you need to complete your set and finally have the ending you want. There should be a part two down the line as there's only 26 episodes in this series and you get 13 episodes this time. Each one of them is filled with an anime you've been waiting to see the end of for years. It might not be the same constant name screamers of yesteryear, but you'll still want to hear to love lorn souls yelling out for each other as Naraku eats another powerful demon.

The Blu-ray set was provided by the publisher for review