Revolutionary Girl Utena: V.4 Impatience and Longing (ep.18-20) [Import]
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Romance at Ohtori Academy suggests a weird round or A Midsummer Night's Dream after Puck has misused the magic flower. Tatsuya is in love with Utena's best friend Wakaba, whom he knew as a child. When Utena persuades him to declare his affection, Wakaba spurns him. She adores Kyoichi, a former student council member who's been expelled, and is providing him with food and a place to stay. But Kyoichi remains smitten with Anthy, Utena's roommate and the Rose Bride. Behind the scenes, the members of the Black Rose Circle continue to plot, using other students as pawns. They seduce Wakaba and fourth-grader Mitsuru (who worships Nanami) into challenging Utena to duels, with predictable results. Utena is as stilted and stylized as a Peking opera, and as difficult to decipher. (Not rated; suitable for ages 14 and older: violence, suggestions of homosexuality and incest) --Charles Solomon
Top Customer Reviews
The "Black Rose" arc is the weakest of UTENA's chapters. I say this because although the focus is rightly placed on the supporting cast and we are given some fascinating backstory and development on them, the entirety of the metaplot comes to a screeching halt for the majority of the arc. One of the interesting dilemmas of the "Student Council" arc was that we never really knew if Utena was going to triumph. Her victories in these episodes are not even in question: the viewer can hit fast-scan through not only every single playing of the music Absolute Destiny Apocalypse but every duel that follows it. This is really where UTENA becomes "episodic;" the backstory of the main cast is on hold for a slew of stories involving minor characters and their associations to the main cast, nearly every story neatly brought to a head by a "duel of the day" fight where any expected conflict was disappointingly easy for her to overcome.
Saying that, there are some awesome stories here: noteably Wakaba's 2 episode exposition, Shiori's introduction (as she becomes focal in the third UTENA arc), and the very under-rated Keiko story. But aside from some hints at what Anthy is up to (the Cowbell of Happiness story is not what it appears to be) and the 2 episode finale about Mikage, we have learned little about the duels or the purpose behind them. The Black Rose arc suffers much the same way Ikuhara's SAILOR MOON SUPER S did: the routine nature of the metaplot's conflicts distract from the otherwise superior stories of the supporting cast.Read more ›
There's a lot to Utena that you might miss your first time watching it, as a good chunk of storytelling is played out in intense symbolism. Like a carefully designed painting by a renaissance master, every detail, no matter how insignificant, adds a layer of depth to Utena, creating a puzzle to be unraveled by the eager viewer.
This particular volume, while brief, continues the tradition of delving deep within the psyche. We catch a glimpse of pre-teen angst as well as the age old struggle of obsession and the desire to cast off the bounds of "normalcy". Another installment of one of the greatest imported anime, "Impatience and Longing" is not one to be missed.
Everyone who I've shown the fan-subtitled version of these episodes to has *begged* me to put in the next tape after they were done. The plot and intrigue begin to quicken their pace now, though things don't really take off until the beginning of the next saga. A word of warning: watch your neck from here on out! The type of mental "whiplash" you'll experience here will begin occuring at a regular frequency until the series end. =)
"Impatience and Longing" is one of the best titles CPM could have come up with for this DVD, as those are precisely the emotions these episodes deal with...
* Episode 18 showcases Tsuabuki Mitsuru and his inner desire to "grow up".
* In episode 19 someone from Wakaba's past shows up at the campus, but why is he courting Utena?
* And episode 20 deals with, well... the after-effects of episode 19.
Doesn't sound interesting? Well, episode 18 continues the Black Rose saga's ability to probe deeply into the psychological makeup of the "secondary" characters; showing us who they really are and why they're acting the way they do. In fact, the entire Black Rose saga could be (and has been) used as an teaching aide in a college-level psychology couse. Episode 18 also introduces one of my favorite secondary-secondary characters, Mari, and perhaps the funniest risque two-liner in the entire series. (You'll know it when you see it. :) )
It's hard to talk about episodes 19 and 20 without giving anything way, so I'll just repeat what I tell all my friends before I show these to them.Read more ›
Anyhow, this DVD will cover the duels of Tsuwabuki Mitsuru and Shinohara Wakaba. The most interesting duel will be Wakaba's, since there will be a certain piece of stock footage (and maybe even different coreography, who knows???) that will be missing from this duel. Oh, and by the way, if you haven't noticed already (because you were probably blind or something), Wakaba IS Utena's best friend, so even with all the stock footage, it's bound to be interesting (not that this stuff is overall uninteresting).
Anyhow, get this DVD. Even the one episode without a duel on this DVD is also interesting, as someone from Wakaba's past walks in...
Most recent customer reviews
This volume of Shoujo Kakumei Utena explores the backgrounds of two of the very-much-supporting (even third-tier) characters of Mitsuru -- Nanami's worshipper -- and Wakaba --... Read morePublished on Sept. 19 2003 by Gretchen
ok to sum it up in two words if possible: completely mind-blowing. and of course i mean the entire black rose arc, not just these episodes. Read morePublished on July 16 2003 by Kai
In this DVD, we reach the middle of the complete Utena storyline and the middle of the Black Rose Saga. There are three episodes on this DVD which are mostly very impressive. Read morePublished on July 5 2003 by Acid Dropper