Digimon Adventure 01 Episode 4 Sub/Dub Comparison

Ow! This fire is hurting me, a Digimon made of fire, for some reason!

Plot: The group stumbles upon a village of Pyocomon (Biyomon’s pre-digivolved form) when an enraged fire Digimon called Meramon attacks. Sora and Biyomon team up to get Biyomon to Digivolve to Birdramon in order to take him down.

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Title change: Red Hot! Birdramon! is changed to Biyomon Gets Fire Power!

Title Screen:

 

Izzy and his alien theories, this time about the Black Gears.

Takeru originally hurts his foot/ankle slightly after tripping. The group tells him that he doesn’t have to act like he’s not hurting and Takeru says it does hurt a little. Patamon then has a delayed reaction to what happened and asks Takeru if he’s okay. The group says it’s a bit late to ask that now.

In the dub, Tai says to TK that he should be careful because the root that he tripped over could’ve been a snake or something. He apologizes and asks if there really are snakes and stuff around and Piyomon says no, just giant monsters and stuff. Patamon then proclaims he’ll protect TK from the monsters.

Taichi originally says that they have no idea where to go and Piyomon nuzzles Sora and says she’ll go anywhere as long as Sora’s there. In the dub, Tai says they should look for signs of intelligent life and Biyomon nuzzles Sora (which seems very out of place considering the line change) and asks if Tai’s insinuating that Digimon aren’t intelligent.

Sora says that even if Piyomon is 100 percent happy, she’ll still be miserable if they get lost and she’ll be held responsible. Piyomon then asks “100 percent?” and what she means by being held responsible. Sora just staves her off of the answers while the others walk away.

In the dub, Sora basically tells Biyomon that Tai didn’t mean to say Digimon weren’t intelligent, but that they need to get out of there and stick together. She then adds that they’ll end up getting left behind because of their talking, which is rude in both versions.

Jyou says as they’re walking that Piyomon is a very sociable Digimon. Koushiro then points out that it seems like each Digimon has their own personality. Piyomon holds Sora’s hand and calls Sora’s name kinda like a child calling for attention from its mother. Sora then asks herself in thought if she can really get along with such a mushy Digimon.

In the dub, Matt basically jokes around saying “Next stop on our tour is the forest of irrelevant road signs.” which is pretty funny considering they are surrounded by irrelevant road signs. Biyomon can’t be heard and Sora thinks to herself that she can’t believe they’re making jokes when they’re so lost.

Izzy: “Look! It’s the alien saucer again!”

Matt: “And it’s headed for a close encounter!”

This scene is originally silent – we’re not even sure if the kids see the gear in the original. Also, points off for more aliens, points off for dated reference.

As they’re walking through the desert with the telephone poles, Koushiro says this is like a documentary that he saw on the African Savannah. Then they discuss seeing stuff like lions and giraffes, but then turn around and say that there are only Digimon there. They say that they have to find other people because there simply has to be other people there. Then Koushiro says that these telephone poles could end up like the phone booths and the trolley and seem like proof of human existence, but be traps or fake.

In the dub, they mostly just complain about how hot it is and Sora points out that the telephone poles don’t have connecting wires. Mimi then asks if they remember the phone booths and the trolley car just to ask if anyone else remembered them…..Okay, none of that scene had any point whatsoever in the dub. Like, at all. In the least. The whole thing about the wires not connecting doesn’t even have any credence…..Granted most of the original conversation is pointless too, but the dub just seems to go in circles.

Also:

Izzy: “I wonder if these even are telephone poles. Maybe they’re some sort of odd alien equivalent.” God, shut the hell up, Izzy. I can’t wait until you stop this alien nonsense. Even tin-foil-hatters don’t babble about aliens as much as you seem to.

Jyou originally yells that they have to find other humans, there’s no other choice. Then Tentomon tells Koushiro that he’s serious – there are no other beings besides Digimon there. In the dub, Joe yells out that they’re doomed because the heat has cooked their brains and Tentomon tells Izzy that they need to find Joe some shade fast.

Mimi basically teases that she either found a new compass or fixed the one that she had. In the dub, Mimi says the numbers melted off of her favorite watch….and I guess that somehow turned it into a compass? Either Mimi’s being insanely cheeky or she’s brain dead.

Piyomon starts annoying Sora by constantly calling her name and saying things to her, to which she responds by saying she’s tired and hot and to just stop clinging to her. In response to this, Piyomon apologizes and backs away from her. Sora responds that it’s fine and she can walk with her. Piyomon cheers and runs to her, telling her that she loves her.

In the dub, Matt says TK’s socks reek, and Mimi says she could use a snack bar while Biyomon stops and says she’s too tired to go on. Sora responds by saying that they have to think positive and maybe imagine that it’s raining, which perks Biyomon up and she cheers while saying that she loves the rain.

These scenes with Piyomon being too clingy seem to have meaning behind them if you’ve watched the entire series. Sora’s crest is the Crest of Love and she initially doesn’t believe that she deserves such a crest because she believes she’s not loving. These scenes with a clingy and lovable Piyomon giving Sora gobs of attention may be poking to her issues on that subject, hence why she’s so avoidant of that behavior. Since these scenes are removed from the dub in lieu of something else, we lose this bit of foreshadowing; if it is that at all.

When the group reaches the Pyokomon village, Mimi says it reminds her of a fairy tale that she read when she was younger. Yamato then says that they thought they’d be able to spend the night there, but considering the size of the village it seems impossible. Koushiro says that they can’t even fit into their houses.

In the dub, Mimi says she’d like to take one of the Pyokomon home and treat it like a stuffed animal to which Matt replies that Mimi doesn’t seem to hear the same things that they do and Izzy surmises that she might be….*sigh* an alien spy. They really are mean to Mimi in the dub. She is dumb, but it’s like the dub writers specifically made her much dumber and made the others like to poke fun at her much more.

In the original, Piyomon ends her sentence with ‘no yo’ which roughly translates to ‘ya know?’ and the Pyocomon ask her why she’s talking like that. She says it’s because she’s been spending so much time with Sora (even though it’s only been like two days) and that she learns a lot from her.

In the dub, she talks normally, yet the Yokomon are acting like she’s speaking differently from the Yokomon, which she really isn’t barring maybe being a little more comfortable speaking. The scene plays out the same though.

Takeru doesn’t point out that Mt. Miharashi is an active volcano in the original, he just looks at the mountain. Not even sure how TK would know that’s an active volcano.

In the original, the Pyocomon are the ones who tell the kids that they saw something crash into Mt. Miharashi earlier and they deduce that it was the black gear. In the dub, since they seemingly saw the crash, they figure it out on their own.

The song cue for Meramon is awesome. In the dub it’s just generic ‘trouble’ music.

Originally, the kids and the Digimon are just frozen in terror and they don’t say anything until they start reacting. In the dub, Sora is telling them all not to move, which makes no sense. What could standing still possibly benefit you? Is his vision based on movement? Meramon is not a T-Rex, Sora.

There really didn’t appear to be friggin millions of Pyocomon at that village, but geez there’s a lot of them when they reach the ship.

Sora doesn’t call Biyomon ‘Biyo’ in the original…which is good because it kinda sounds like you’re calling her ‘B.O.’ and it’s not nice to say your Digimon stinks, Sora.

Attack name change: Burning Fist, Meramon’s attack, is changed to Fireball, which sounds less cool but makes more sense since it is a fireball and not like a fire punch.

Another vocal song after Piyomon Evolves is removed in lieu of the same action Digimon dub music.

Meteor Wing, Birdramon’s attack, actually didn’t get changed for the dub, but for some reason they don’t say the name of her attack here.

Also, what’s the logistics of this fight? Everyone else is attacking him with air, fire and electricity and it only made him grow more powerful, but an Adult/Champion fire attack gets rid of the black gear? How?

Sora also never call Biyomon “Bee” in the original.

Piyomon actually tells Sora that she loves her in the original. In the dub, she just says “because…you know” Biyomon shouldn’t be that bashful.

Also, I think they repeat the shot of them hugging for no reason.

Jyou says that the bird food or whatever that stuff is isn’t that bad if your chew it enough. In the dub, Joe says he’ll pass on the meal.

Next up is Kabuterimon’s debut and I actually remember that episode being kinda hokey, so let’s see.

…Previous Episode

Pokemon Episode 8 Analysis – The Path to the Pokemon League

This should just be Ash’s default character design.

CotD(s): AJ – A promising young Pokemon trainer with a strict yet extremely effective method of training, AJ creates an unofficial Pokemon Gym in the middle of the woods to train his Pokemon and beat passing trainers. He manages to get 98 wins on a perfect record and aims to get 100 wins before going for badges and entering the Pokemon League. AJ is a tough, but a very smart and skilled Pokemon trainer who definitely earned a spot in the Pokemon league if he ever made it there.

Reappears?: No. 😦

Pokemon: He has numerous, but Sandshrew is his main.

Plot: With two Gym badges under his belt…..well, on his vest, Ash starts to get pretty cocky. When the group stumbles upon an unofficial Pokemon gym in the woods, Ash is ready and raring to chalk up another victory. However, the owner of the gym, an equally confident boy named AJ, easily wipes the floor with Ash by using his Sandshrew, giving him victory 99 in an undefeated streak with his ultimate goal being 100.

After the battle, Ash hears commotion from inside the gym and peaks in to see that AJ’s training regimen for his Pokemon is extremely tough. He views it as being overly tough and worries for the well-being of the Pokemon.

In a mix-up, Team Rocket accidentally captures Sandshrew instead of Pikachu, leading Ash to believe that he was right in his assumptions. He condescendingly assumes that Sandshrew ran away because he views AJ as a jerk and saw how good of a relationship he and Pikachu had, so he went off to find a better trainer.

AJ vehemently denies this, but Ash hops up on his high horse again. In an effort to ‘save’ the Pokemon from AJ’s strict training, Ash offers to take all of the Pokemon away from the Gym and train under him instead. The Pokemon won’t give Ash the time of day, however, because they don’t feel abused. They love AJ, and he loves them. They deal with the strict training regimen because of that love and caring – they want to see AJ succeed and they know he’d never do anything to hurt them.

Sandshrew quickly escapes Team Rocket’s clutches and immediately returns to AJ’s Gym with an unconscious Meowth attached to its tail. AJ and Sandshrew are reunited, and Ash sees that AJ really does love his Pokemon and vice versa.

Team Rocket show up to take Pikachu, and after they sling insults at AJ’s Pokemon, he challenges them to his 100th match. AJ blows Team Rocket away easily with Sandshrew, finishing them off in a powerful Fissure attack. With 100 wins under his belt, he heads off on his journey to get eight badges and enter the Pokemon League. Ash has gained a newfound respect for AJ and vows to find his own path to achieving his dream of becoming a Pokemon master.

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– Gotta love how cocky Ash is with his two pity badges….

– Wait, why are we using the logo to say ‘Pokemon’ again?

– Ya know, as much as I like AJ, his voice blows. Sounds like a cowboy who got hit in the face with a brick. I am aware this is Maddie Blaustein, but that doesn’t change my opinion.

– I do admire AJ’s work ethic and his plan. 100 wins, undefeated mind you, under his belt before going to get badges is a great plan. Gary and the others didn’t even have that advantage.

– Geez, Ash is being obnoxious in this episode. Between him being so full of himself it’s like ego-ception and him snapping at Misty for giving him legit advice on a topic that he’s shown time and again to have problems in (Pokemon Type matchups) he’s pretty insufferable.

– Ash: “You can do it! Flying versus Ground should be no problem!” He said after his Flying type, Pidgeotto, just got thrashed by Sandshrew, the Ground type.

– Hey, they did the thing where you can see Ash’s skeleton when he’s getting electrocuted again.

– You also get to really see the stark contrast between Ash’s work ethic and that of…you know…a good Pokemon trainer. Yes, AJ is strict with his Pokemon, yes, he uses a whip, though he never seems to actually hit his Pokemon with it, he just hits the ground near them and uses the sound as a cue, but it’s like Ash doesn’t understand intense training regimens……or work.

All he says in defense of his own work ethic is you have to make friends with your Pokemon….and that’s it. Does he really not think it’s important to keep Pokemon trained on a regular regimen outside of the one or two battles every now and then? Does he also not realize that you can be strict and a Pokemon’s friend at the same time?

– I love that scene where Pikachu goes into a ball due to the Yousei Gips thing (the ‘strength enhancer’ that Sandshrew wears) and then Sandshrew laughs and goes into a ball too.

– Team Rocket’s getting some good lines too.

– Meowth: “Just ‘biting’ my time. *munch* AHHHH THE MOMENT OF TOOTH!”

…….I said some.

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I really love this episode outside of the obnoxious Ash we have to put up with. It’s made more tolerable because it’s brought up time and again that he’s making an ass out himself. I especially like it because, if this were made today, I guarantee it would end in a lesson for the CotD instead of a lesson for Ash.

They didn’t decide to go the predictable route of making AJ a legit asshole who does basically abuses his Pokemon, then have Sandshrew run away and AJ learn the error of his ways. AJ stays true to form, Sandshrew stays loyal and Ash is the one who has to learn that, just because you’re strict, tough and hard working doesn’t mean you’re abusive or an asshole to your Pokemon.

I also very much appreciate that they didn’t end this episode with Ash beating AJ. Not only would that have tarnished AJ’s dream, but it would’ve been another BS win.

Plus the ending battle with Team Rocket was just awesome. Fissure is freakin’ amazing.

This could’ve been a great time to have Ash actually learn a lesson for a change, but, sadly, this is another drop in the ‘One-shot lessons’ bucket. He’ll never reach even a decent work ethic in his training. He only ever gets close to such a thing near Gym matches and Leagues and even that’s short lived.

I especially hate the completely missed opportunity for actually making AJ another rival. Sure, he already has Gary, but he rarely ever shows up and never battles Ash when he does. AJ could’ve actually been a friendly rival that would definitely give Ash a run for his money. But nope, just another forgotten CotD who doesn’t even reappear in the Pokemon League episodes. *pfft*

And while I would find it interesting for AJ to have taken Ash’s offer to join him on his journey…..I don’t think I’d handle that voice very well for the rest of the series.

Here’s to AJ. We hardly knew ye.

Next episode, The School of Hard Knocks where the gang finds a Pokemon academy where, if you pass, you’re automatically qualified to enter the Pokemon League without traveling to get badges.

Previous Episode…

Episode One-Derland – Akazukin Chacha

Plot: Chacha is a novice witch under the tutelage of the greatest magician in the world, Seravy. However, she frequently messes up even basic spells, making Seravy nervous to send her to magic school.

To help her out, he gives her a magical pendant to wear along with a magical bracelet and ring that she is meant to give to two close friends that she can trust. A mysterious evil force tries to destroy Seravy by tricking his nemesis, Dorothy, into kidnapping and imprisoning him. Can Chacha, her friend Riiya and friend turned ally Shiine save Seravy?

Breakdown: This show is awesome.

It’s hilarious, cute, the magic is interesting, the characters are memorable, and I just had a blast watching the first episode.

It does a good job of establishing the main characters as well as the world that they live in, everyone has their own unique quirks and personalities that let them stand out and shine, and the comedic timing was spot on.

I was already on board with a fully magical world aspect to begin with, even if the Little Red Riding Hood aspect still confuses me….there were no witches in that fairy tale. Is that just the theme for the magical girl powers?

Speaking of which – magical girl show! Don’t say ‘Duh.’ I mean legit magical girl not just a girl with magic powers.

The three items that she gets can be activated by three words said by every recipient of the items. Chacha, with the pendant has to say ‘Love’….and of course she gets ‘Love’ Every girl with a specific trait as a specialty always gets ‘Love.’ Riiya, a boy who is in love with Chacha and can transform into a dog, says ‘Courage,’ while the aforementioned kinda enemy turned ally named Shiine says ‘Hope’.

In all honesty, and really not just because the ‘love’ thing makes me kinda bitter, Chacha should get ‘Hope,’ Riiya should get ‘Love,’ and Shiine should get ‘Courage.’ Chacha is full of hope in actually mastering her magic. The first character trait we see of Riiya is his undying love of Chacha. Shiine gets courage because……it’s the third one. Hey cut me some slack. He shows no signs of ‘Hope’ either.

When they speak these words, Chacha gets about five years older and changes outfits to become Magical Princess……Not the most creative magical girl name, but whatever. So my soft spot for magical girl shows was fully taken advantage of here.

The looming evil is kept in shadow and we’re never made aware of who he is nor why he wants to get rid of Seravy, but that adds tension to the overall storyline.

Final Verdict:

I can’t wait for more fun with Chacha and the others. 🙂

H2O: Footprints in the Sand Review

Rating: 3/10

Plot: Hirose Takuma has recently moved to a small village to live a more restful life due to his blindness. He soon meets a girl named Hayami and wants to befriend her. However, she rejects him. He is confused by her rejection until he learns that everyone in the village treats Hayami like garbage and no one bats an eye at it. She’s regularly mocked, bullied and beaten by her classmates while none of the adults do anything about it – some actually partake in it. Why is this? And why does Hayami feel that she deserves it?

Breakdown: WARNING: I AM GOING TO BE SPOILING NEARLY ALL OF THIS SERIES BECAUSE THE ENDING IS A PIVITOL PART OF THE FINAL RATING. SCROLL DOWN TO THE BOTTOMLINE IF YOU WANT TO REMAIN UNSPOILED.

Wow. Just wow. I haven’t seen an anime blow it so badly since….I can’t even come up with an example. I was somewhat excited about this series because I had heard that it was even better than Air. I was also somewhat dreading this series because the THEM review shot this down to their lowest rating for the final four episodes due to a drastic change in the series….And I can pretty much understand why.

But let’s rewind a bit because the final four episodes are more about Hirose. Let’s tackle the Hayami angle, shall we?

Like the plot says, she’s treated like garbage by the entire village. She’s regularly called a monster, a roach, and a lot of other vile insults. She’s constantly the target of terrible bullying like ruining her lunch or pouring toilet water on her head, and she’s regularly beaten by her fellow classmates. In addition, she lives in two cable cars up in the mountains alone. It’s so bad that I’m really left wondering why she doesn’t just leave….That’s never answered, by the way.

The reason for the bullying and the reason why she thinks she deserves all of it is because her family had a lot of power in the village and they caused a lot of pain and suffering for many of the villagers. Eventually, the village got sick of it, torched their house and drove her family out of the village, leaving her as the sole survivor. Why she stayed and didn’t leave with her family is never explained. I didn’t really understand if her parents were dead or ran out of town. They never make it clear.

Then Hirose comes into the picture and stirs up the village by standing up for her every now and then. And when I say that, I mean he stands up for her when boys are bullying her. When girls are, he never pipes up, which is annoying.

This plotline is solved rather suddenly. The kids suddenly stop abusing her and even become good friends with her just because Hinata told them to stop. The other villagers take a lot longer to stop, but it was so jarring that they went from turning their heads when she’s being beaten and bullied to going shopping with her in mere days.

This whole thing is somewhat stupid. She can’t control what family she was born into. She did nothing whatsoever to cause any heartache. Are the villagers really so stupid and cruel that they’d abuse a young girl just because she’s related to the family that was so terrible? They don’t see it at all hypocritical that they’re being no better if not worse than her family was by treating her like that? It’s a wonder anyone in this show grew up partially normally with parents who all have that mindset.

Hinata’s plotline is that she’s scared to death of her grandfather who is the village elder. I won’t spoil much of her plotline because it’s the best plotline in the series, in my opinion, but let’s just say her grandfather is really messed up.

Hirose’s plotline is where things really start unraveling. The THEM reviewer said that episode seven was the perfect ending to the series and that they would easily give the show a moderate rating if was left at episode seven, which finishes up Hinata’s storyline, but leaves a chunk of Hayami’s and all of Hirose’s in the balance.

To its credit, episode seven does seem like a series finale. It had credits over actual scenes and included a vocal song, a big reveal, a big inspiring moment, a bunch of tie-ups, it’s almost like that was the series finale, but they realized they still had to do four episodes by contract or something.

Episode eight was criticized by the same reviewer as being a big chunk of randomness. Otoha, who had been seen throughout the anime as a spirit that only Hirose could see, was suddenly a magical girl and everything around them was going nuts due to something in the spirit world. In order to gather magical energy, Hirose had to take charge of the situation and try to literally smack everyone back into reality. In the end, this is revealed to be an illusion that Otoha made for Hirose to see a book world that Hinata had made up when she was a child. Due to the connection between Otoha and Hinata, she thought that would be a good way to say farewell.

I wasn’t bothered by that episode. It was a final tribute to Hinata’s book that Otoha wanted to share with Hirose. Despite the randomness, it was kinda sweet.

Then we get to episode nine, which solidifies a relationship between Hirose and Hayami. That episode was also pretty sweet and cute, so I have no real problems yet.

Then we get to…….episode ten. Let’s backtrack – remember how I said Hirose was blind? Otoha grants him sight in the start of the series. No one questions why he suddenly has sight, but there it is.

In episode ten, since the Village Elder doesn’t want Hirose with Hayami, he reveals to Hirose that the Kohinata family, Hayami’s family, is the reason that Hirose’s mom killed herself.

The Kohinatas had set up an arranged marriage between his mother and a member of their family, but she met someone else, ran off, eloped and soon had Hirose. However, the Kohinata family soon found her and started pressuring her daily to divorce her husband and marry into their family. Details on what exactly ‘pressure’ means is beyond me. She couldn’t take the pressure anymore and jumped in front of a train one day when she was out with Hirose.

It is never, ever adequately explained, but I guess the emotional and mental trauma from that event caused him to go blind?

After Hirose learns of this, things seemingly go back to normal, but it’s soon obvious that Hirose can’t separate Hayami from her family. He begins having nightmares and hallucinations of Hayami dragging his mother in front of the train. This causes a few spontaneous emotional outbursts toward Hayami, which is unlike his gentle and quiet nature.

He drives Hayami away, and she becomes so angered that she starts beating a dam that was made to stop the water during the current rainstorm. Two of the harsher bullies from her school walk up, and she eggs them on saying that she’s going to destroy the town just like their parents said she would. The two bullies beat the crap out of her, and she continues to egg them on until one of them tries to strangle/drown her in the water.

She’s saved but walks away from the scene before she can get any medical attention.

She runs into Hirose, who doesn’t even ask her if she’s okay when she’s obviously been beaten to a pulp. He tries to apologize for what happened and says that he doesn’t blame her, but she prods and says that she is responsible. He snaps and starts beating the crap out of her while blaming her for his mother’s death. He stops his frenzy when he realizes that she’s unconscious and he faints as well.

This is where I fell off the wagon.

Hirose yelling at Hayami and having nightmares would be partly understandable. It has to be confusing to find out that your girlfriend is related to the people who drove your mother to suicide, so that might drive up bad memories and maybe a nightmare or two, but she had nothing to do with it! Just like she had nothing to do with anything else that she’s taking abuse for. In addition, it’s not like her family actually killed her or anything. They just pressured her to marry into their family.

Hirose’s a gigantic hypocrite. He was on everyone’s asses for blaming Hayami for the pain and suffering caused in the village when she was just a child who had nothing to do with it, yet here he is doing exactly that.

This entire show is built around the premise that Hayami is and must be a martyr. She must pay for her family’s sins and take all of the flak from the villagers despite being innocent for everything. It ridiculous.

Hayami wakes up and, despite being badly hurt, she is not in any life-threatening danger. Hirose, however, has yet to wake up. When he does wake up, he tells them that he’s gone blind again.

But hold on! We have a plot twist!

It turns out that Hirose had never regained his sight to begin with, and that he had fooled himself into thinking that he had. This is proven by mistaking details in a photo that he’s supposedly seen and showing drawings and writing he made that are scribbles.

So, yeah…..Hirose’s insane. He eventually gets so bad that he believes Hayami is his mother and that he’s a small child again.

After a big climax in which Hirose saves Hayami’s life from the villagers (They were going to kill her because she was going to leave…Yeah, that makes sense), he says he’ll protect his mother, Hayami.

Hirose’s uncle.decides that it would be best to move him back to the old apartment that he and his mother used to live in back in Tokyo. Hirose’s father is never seen, by the way, which is incredibly weird. He’s all you have left now, he’s blind, yet you can’t even visit him? Jerk. His uncle suggests that Hayami go with Hirose to act as his mother until he gets better.

Hayami and Hirose move, and they go through a few months with Hayami working as a paper-girl (those still exist?) and Hirose just hanging out because he’s so mentally ill.

One day, as they’re out shopping, Hayami tells Hirose that he has to believe that his mother loved him and didn’t abandon him like he thought. She had actually sacrificed her life for him after he tried to catch his ball that bounced across the railroad tracks.

To push the fact even further, I hope you’re sitting down for this, Hayami kills herself by throwing herself in front of a train just like his mother did. And just as she does that, his blindness is cured and he’s mentally sound.

No, I’m not kidding. In essence, to help someone get over a traumatizing event, just traumatize them again with something else. It’ll even clear up their physical disabilities!

He gets over his blindness AND gets over his crazy-ness by watching his girlfriend kill herself in the same way that his mother did? Just….just….wha–it….

Wouldn’t that just make him crazier?? Also…..hey, wait a second… If Hayami knew that, why did she let Hirose believe that her family drove his mother to suicide? Ugh, nevermind.

I’m not a doctor, but I believe I could find it plausible that someone could lose their sight after watching something particularly terrible and traumatic. At the very least, in an anime. I can even believe that he tricked himself into thinking that he had his sight back when he really didn’t, even if that does raise a multitude of questions (Like, how was he walking around town just fine? Why didn’t his friends think it was weird that Hirose was acting like he could see if he clearly couldn’t? If he never got his sight back, was Otoha just screwing with him? Just how?!) But him being cured of his supposed blindness AND mental illness by watching Hayami kill herself?

Oh and that’s not all. The end credits show everybody about 6-7 years in the future where Hinata is now the village elder (Where are her parents exactly?) and a baby is there too. (No, it’s not Hirose’s kid. It’s actually Hamaji’s, but it’s a long story. Dunno why they had that weird plotpoint in there. Hamaji was a really minor character…)

Hirose, full with sight and mental soundness, and his uncle have built a windmill where Hirose met Hayami because she loved pinwheels and windmills. All’s fine and dandy until a little girl runs up to Hirose while being chased by a boar. She looks, shockingly, like Otoha and is even named Otoha. She was reincarnated as a little girl and said that she pulled a lot of strings in the spirit world to pull ‘it’ off for him. When she runs off, he sees, yes, you guessed it, Hayami.

She was brought back to life thanks to Otoha. Because that won’t shock the living hell out of everyone in the village, will it? Then again, seeing as how his blindness being cured by Otoha wasn’t real, she could be an illusion for all we know too.

They could’ve completely avoided this if Hayami hadn’t been stupid enough to do that. The train sounds and alarm were enough to shock Hirose back to reality. She could’ve just pretended to kill herself, and that probably would’ve worked to get him back to normal. Gah!

I could’ve said “give this show a higher rating if you stop at episode seven” like the THEM review, but I can’t do that because episode seven would just leave you hanging on both Hirose and Hayami’s stories, so I’m kinda stuck.

The tone changes are also jarring. We can go from goofy and playful to sad and depressing to dark in mere minutes.

Hirose is a welcome change from your average harem main guy (even if we do have the mandatory beach episode where every girl is all over him and making him uncomfortable.) but he’s such a pushover when it comes to the girls. He’ll let them all push him around and he won’t say a thing about it. And like I said, if females are the ones doing the bullying to Hayami, he won’t say a word. He just watches with a frown.

It’s really difficult to like any of the other main or side characters beyond Hirose and Hayami because, despite how they seem all cheery and happy, there’s this constant nagging in your head that these supposedly nice kids treat Hayami like complete garbage and don’t think they’re doing anything wrong. How can you like any of these characters when you know that they’re like that?

Art and Animation:
The art in this series was fairly good, but the girls are designed oddly. They have normal sized heads, but insanely thin stick bodies. It makes you wonder how their necks support their heads.

Music: The music is wonderful and fairly unique. The OP is good and the ED has become one of my personal favorites.

Voice Acting: Japanese – The voices and acting are all wonderful. Hirose in particular has a very fitting voice. It’s very kind and gentle, much like what I would picture for Yuki from Fruits Basket.

Bottomline:
I enjoyed this anime for a while, but the ending really does kill it. Like…beat it with a shovel and set it on fire killed it. The main characters, by that I mean the main three, are usually likable, but I must reiterate that it’s really hard to like any of the side characters considering how they act around Hayami. The story, at least up until episodes seven and eight are great, if not somewhat frustrating at times, but the ending three episodes were so bad, it’s almost impressive.

It’s a ball of wtf wrapped in huh? and dipped in are you kidding me? It’s not a complete waste. The story between Hinata and Hayami, while being somewhat stupid at points, is nice. Hinata’s story is actually very interesting, and there are some heartwarming moments to be found there. If you’re a big fan of visual novel dramas and want something different than your usual fare, go right ahead and be very wary of the ending, but for anyone else, I’d say skip it.

Additional Information and Notes: H2O Footprints in the Sand was based on an eroge visual novel of the same name by Makura. The anime adaptation was produced by Zexcs and was directed by Hideki Tachibana.

Episodes: 12

Year: 2008

Recommended Audience: There is some predictable blindness fanservice in episode one (Whoops I can’t see, I’m gonna fall down a lot while girls fall with their butts on my face. I still don’t get how that would ever happen, logically. How would you have to fall in order to achieve that kind of position?) and mild fanservice throughout. There’s also some heavy themes and ‘scary’ moments. I’d say…..13+