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Hand Maid May: V.3 Memory Failure (ep.8-11)
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The romantic comedy Hand Maid May feels like pieces of Oh My Goddess, Tenchi Muyo, El Hazard, and Steel Angel Kurumi cobbled together. The premise is no more improbable, the characters no sillier, the holes in the plot no more egregious than in those comedies, but the elements never quite gel, and the show plays like a rerun, even on the first viewing. Kazuya is a computer nerd, trying to create a squid version of the famous robot-cat Doraemon. When a virus zaps his system, he inadvertently orders a Hyperdoll--a girl one-sixth normal size. May tries to perform a maid's duties despite her diminutive stature, and the inevitable mismatched attraction arises. When Kazuya can't pay the $1.45 million bill, May is repossessed by the Cyberdyne Corp. But a kindly robot offers to provide him with a replacement--free of charge. A full-sized version of May appears and they pick up where they left off. But Kazuya's kindness attracts other beautiful Hyperdolls. The predictable contretemps include the jealousy of Nanbara, Kazuya's self-proclaimed best friend and worst enemy. Things take a weird turn when Kazuya's and Nanbara's descendants arrive from the future and begin messing with the story line. The low-key romance is juxtaposed with jiggle shots and risqué jokes. The original series ran 10 episodes--a pointless 11th OAV has been added--and the episodes stretched over three discs. The fourth contains supplemental material. (Rated 13 and older: brief nudity, minor profanity, violence, risqué humor, alcohol use) --Charles Solomon --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From the Back Cover
Hand Maid May
New arrivals threaten the stability of the Kasumi House! First comes a powerful typhoon which threatens to blow everyone away, followed by Nanbara's descendant from the future who proves that some behavior is genetic. However, the most threatening arrival is a virus that may destroy the Cyberdyne Dolls! Kazuya has less than 24 hours to find the secret to May's immunity if he is to save them all!
Top Customer Reviews
Turns out I was right.
This was a sweet story. Some would say a bit predictable...
True...but no more so than in most superhero comics.
Almost all the characters were likeable (Sorry, Kotoro, you're a BIT too much over the top, even for an anime...), filled with life, convincing, and enjoyable to watch. The plotline, for the most part, was solid, as well.
However, I did think that the aforementioned plotline began to fragment a bit as it neared the conclusion, just when I was beginning to hope that everything would all come together and be answered. (Most specifically, time travel and causality regarding Kazuya/Kotaro and thier destinies). (I would've preferred the 11th episode to address these logical problems, rather than being the enjoyable 'filler' episode that it came off being, IMO.) Then again, that MAY be intentional on the creators' part, and it may all be resolved if they choose to do more episodes in the future. I DO hope they do so, as the characters all but BEG to be developed further...
The additional CD in this set was was enjoyable to read through, with behind-the-scenes info on the series, the characters, and the creators.
(I thought that Kotoro's 'music area' on disk #1 was cute, but unnecessary.)
The audio character snippits in the 4 DVD's were enjoyable. I'd love to put them as sounds on my computer.
All told, even with those few minor quibbles, I heartily believe I got my money's worth with this set. It's another gem for my growing anime collection and WELL worth the money, IMHO.
(One last question...If May, at a foot tall (Barbie-sized) costs $1,450,000...how much would the full-sized Sara, Mami, Kei or Rena be? $1 billion?)
To the credit of the writers of this series, the ending of the series (episode 10) was actually not what I expected. So I was very pleased with that. Episode 11 isn't animated as well and the story is pretty weak other than to make Kasumi decide that she's going to fight for Kazuya's love and not let a bunch of cyber doll's win his heart (especially since they can have kids). NOTE: A fansub version of this episode has Mami-san telling Kasumi that Kazuya wants to have kids and that Kasumi *can* have them -- implying that the cyber dolls cannot. I don't know which translation is correct which is why I need to learn Japanese!
The problem with the series continues to be the copious amounts of fan-service that are all over the place. They even manage to include it inside the DVD packaging! Otherwise, this kawaii (cute) series is pretty good.
As to the DVD, the same problems exist as on the previous ones. There are limited extras and there isn't a limited subtitle option for the English dub. The dubbing is done well and a credit to the English producer/director! The entire series should have been placed on 2 DVD's rather than spread it over three.
Bottom line: if you can get past all of the fan-service in this series, get all 3 DVD's. The English voice actors do a great job of capturing the spirit of the characters and the feel of the original Japanese seiyuu's.
This series is very kawaii (Japanese for cute), sweet, and who can not love May? Unfortunately, the fan-service (gratuitous showing of panties, jiggling breasts, etc.) is so severe at times that it tends to overwhelm the story. Not that the story is deep mind you, but a lack of fan-service would have helped tremendously (IMO).
The DVD contains few extras. Unlike in the first DVD, there is no annoying pre-menu to go through. That is good. I wish that Pioneer had had a 3rd audio option in addition to English dub, Japanese, and full subtitles. A limited subtitle option with the English dub (or Japanese) would have been nice. This way, songs and Japanese text would be subtitled rather than the all-or-nothing approach.
Speaking of dubbing, the English dub is really pretty good! The voice actors do a really good job at capturing the spirit of the characters. The only thing lost is in the use of Japanese titles (-kun, -chan, -san, etc.). English doesn't have proper translations for such titles, but I think I would have allowed them to stay in the English version. A small glossary in the extras could have educated the ignorant as to these terms.
Bottom line: If you can get past the fan-service, this is a sweet, cute, and often very funny series!
but buyer beware, this anime contains quite a bit of nudity, clevage, and other stuff like that. so if you are looking for an anime to buy your 10 or 11 year old, i would recomend Saber Marionette J instead, because it is very similar, but more audience friendly ^_^
if your not looking to buy for an 11 or 10 year old, and don't mind the nudity and stuff, than by all means, buy this!
Most recent customer reviews
Simply put, this series is good. It is a little short, but the pacing is nice and all of the characters are enjoyable. Read morePublished on Aug. 21 2003 by Michael Riley
I really wanted to like this series, and for the first few episodes I did. Saotome, Kasumi and May make for an enjoyable show. Read morePublished on June 22 2003 by Anthony Peak
This is a very bright, cheerful series! It has nice, bright animation, catchy opening and closing theme music, and plenty of laughs! Read morePublished on March 22 2003
MAY is a 1/6 size Cyberdoll created by Cyberdyne CO, LTD. She came to Kazuya's room caused by his accidental access to Cyberdyne's web shop this series is so terrific & funny... Read morePublished on March 7 2003 by Marz
After I'd seen the 1st episode of hand maid may I realy was addicted to it! It's just one of the greatest animes I'v ever seen. Read morePublished on Feb. 13 2003 by R. Bas
pioneer has done it after all the complete Hand Made May in one
box with some great extras as well, Hand Maid May is one of the best anime ever maid,it's one of these cute and... Read more
The last and GREATEST episodes of Hand Maid May. Not only does it have a cute cover, but the episodes are funny an cute and clever as can be. I wonder who created Hand Maid May?? Read morePublished on Sept. 3 2002 by hotarutomoe
The Hand Maid May saga continues...with 3 brand-new episodes! Join Kazuya Saotome as May gets taken away from him, but comes back bigger! What'll have next? Read morePublished on Sept. 3 2002 by hotarutomoe
This anime is truly one of the best I have seen. It's funny, cute, but most of all, it's has something what some of the anime I've seen don't have-PLOT. Read morePublished on Sept. 3 2002 by hotarutomoe