xxxHOLiC: Complete First Season
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There is no such thing as coincidence, there is only the inevitable…
Watanuki has been haunted by dark spirits his entire life, a curse flowing through his bloodline preventing peace. When his incessant demons drag him to the ornate door of the Dimensional Witch Yuko, he meets a mystical woman of insight and luxury, quick to help those in a bind… For a fee! One might very well end up paying with their soul! To be free of his visions, Watanuki will work in her shop of dreams and wishes. There is always a price to pay…
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Top Customer Reviews
But the quality is quite bad, seems that the top and bottom is missing about 1".
Also sometimes when there is excessive black on t he screen, like Yuko's hair or watanuki's school outfit, there is some bars that show through. I'm not sure if that is suppose to be part of the show or not... but i is weird as it runs sideways. You can see it in the reds sometimes too.... very bad quality re-print
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
For those who were hoping that the "complete series" would contain the second season, xxxHOLIC Kei, it is not here. Hopefully Funimation will bring it out in a box set soon, as the other distributor discontinued before it was finished, or really even begun good.
I'll still rate it five stars because the price was really good, and the show is excellent. I'll just keep waiting for Kei.
Yuko's solution for Watanuki is for him to seek out his schoolmate Domeki, the calm, collected star of his school's archery team who just so happens to be a natural exorcist - and incidentally the one person Watanuki can't stand due to insane jealousy largely stemming from Domeki being on friendly terms with Watanuki's crush, the lovely, sunny Himawari. Domeki, however, seems more focused on keeping Watanuki in one piece than hitting on Himawari...
So begins Watanuki's journey to end his problem and, because he's a very good person, try to help some of the other customers who come to Yuko's shop - if he doesn't get himself killed first.
The first thing that fans of the Holic manga will notice is that some of the events have been switched around in the anime, which might disorient them a bit but isn't really a huge problem at this point, as the story doesn't start to become too linear yet (it does beginning with the events presumably covered by the as yet unlicensed second season). They'll also notice that all references to what is concurrently happening to the Tsubasa gang have been cut (Tsubasa fans will recognize Watanuki from his brief cameo at the very beginning of Tsubasa), and the Warashi girls have been added to enough scenes to upgrade them to borderline recurring characters rather than guest stars. As with the Holic movie (A Midsummer Night's Dream), the English dub is particularly strong. Sometimes the stars align, and Todd Haberkorn pretty much nails how I heard Watanuki in my head while reading the manga: making us laugh when he goes into houseboy mode, want to slap him upside the head when he's horrid to Domeki, and breaking our hearts in the final stories of this season. His co-star Colleen Clinkenbeard equals him with a pitch-perfect, sultry Yuko; and J. Michael Tatum does fine as Domeki, who is arguably the most difficult character in the series to voice as a boy who's just as good and feels just as deeply as Watanuki but tends to show it in actions rather than words. Even minor characters are voiced extremely well.
All in all, I can heartily recommend this to Holic fans and anyone else who wants to try a supernatural tale.
When multiple releases start appearing, I think it's good to know how one release differs from another. I got this set in advance from another web site (for $30) where it was titled as a Viridian Collection set from Funimation, which is how they designate their budget releases. However, this set does not actually say "Viridian Collection" anywhere on it. The seies is set on 4-DVD's with 6 episodes on each disc. The set takes up the same space as a normal DVD case. It has an outer cardboard slip-cover with the same artwork as in the case itself. The discs are set on two double-sided hub pages that hold the discs in place very well and there is additional artwork visable inside with a listing of all the episodes. There aren't any on disc extras beyond textless songs and trailers but the original single disc releases of the series were the same way.
If this truly is a Viridian Collection, then it seems like a nice improvement over prior packaging choices. The only thing missing from previous Funimation releases of the series would be the artwork on the cases, although this set still looks really good. If you've been waiting for a lower priced release of xxxHolic, then this one is a great choice.
The story centers on Watanuki, his job at a special shop that exists in and out of this world, and the shop's owner, Yuko Ichihara, an enigmatic character with a love of good food and plenty of alcohol. Supporting characters include: Shizuka D'meki, a fellow student who lives in a temple, and has a passive power to ward off spirits. Himawari Kunogi, the girl Watanuki has a crush on. Maru & Moro, two girls without souls that are bound to the shop. Mokona, a rabbit-like critter with above average intelligence, who shares Yuko's taste for food and drink.
Most episodes center on different customer and their problems - all the customers were female. There are also some episodes centering on the main characters - vacations, activities, and the like. These are more light-hearted and humorous, as opposed to the darker, serious tone of the customer based ones. This really is a series worth looking at. Check out the pages on Wikipedia - there's OVA,tons of Manga and more than one season to keep you busy!