Headline: Half Moon (Third Quarter)
Originally posted August 27, 2014
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
This is the fourth of my six-part review for the different volumes of Moon Phase.
My opinion of these episodes is that most of them are just filler episodes, which do more to show off the characters’ personalities than actually advancing the plot. It’s only during the second half of episode 17 – and most of 18 – when things start to take drastic turns.
Here’s a run-down of each of the episodes in order (sorry for any spoilers).
In episode 15, Hazuki is still trying to battle her inner demons (Luna), while Kouhei is clueless as to why “the brat” is so mad with him. We also see a different side to Elfriede and, for this episode only, the Neko Mimi Mode opening credits get a drastic variation – the characters pull funnier expressions and Hazuki is either invisible or absent from them.
Episode 16 has Hazuki and Haiji declaring war on a couple of garden crows for stealing their lunch. Plus Hazuki becomes a model / cover girl. Anyone who’s a fan of cosplay should definitely see this episode – it’s cuter than the dressing up scene in episode 7 (Volume 2).
Episode 17 has more cosplay and we get to hear Elfriede’s backstory. The ending to this episode is rather tragic.
The last episode on this volume takes place eight months after the events of episode 17, where most of the characters have gone into hiding. This is perhaps my favourite episode of Volume 4 because it shows much character development. We’re also introduced to Arte (voiced by Carrie Savage), who plays an important role throughout the rest of the series. The ending to the last episode leaves you wondering exactly what her relation is to Hazuki and why she hates her.
This volume and Volume 5 are two of the hardest DVDs in the series to obtain on Amazon, because of their limited availability. So if you’re thinking of buying the whole series as I did, keep a sharp eye out for when Volumes 4 and 5 are available – if ever. My recommendations for this DVD are the same as for the other volumes. Buy it if you’re a fan of Funimation Entertainment, Negima, Neko Mimi (cat ears) and – especially for this volume – cosplay.
By the way, most of you who’ve read my earlier Moon Phase Reviews (Parts 1, 2 and 3) will have noticed that I keep comparing this anime to both seasons of Negima. The reason for this is not only because it features many of the same voice actors, but because there are a lot of similarities between the two. These include having a 10-year-old (looking) vampire, a character who is impervious to magic and a recurring joke where a wash tub falls of people’s heads. It’s almost like Moon Phase and Negima were created by the same person or something.
You might notice I wasn’t very subtle about the episodes’ events in this review. The reason was because I didn’t think they impacted the overall series too greatly – other volumes gave a lot more story and character development. Also, I didn’t think the “drastic turns” in episodes 17 and 18 were worth going into detail over.
My aim for this review was to summarise everything in as few words as possible. But still keep readers interested, so they’d be encouraged to watch the episodes themselves. I think most of my lines achieved this very well: “We’re also introduced to Arte … who plays an important role throughout the rest of the series … the last episode leaves you wondering what her relation is to Hazuki and why she hates her.”
Although I did give a lot of spoilers, I decided it would be more helpful to readers than holding back significant information. Another thing that made the review helpful was the info I gave about Volume 4 and 5‘s availability – readers would know to buy these two DVDs straight away if they wanted to own the whole series.
This was a unique review, but I still included the same elements in it as the previous Moon Phase Reviews; i.e. the opening six-part line, the identical recommendations and the headline named after a moon phase. All of this reinforced the separate reviews as part of one series.
While writing this, I discovered it was much easier to break down the episodes individually, rather than reviewing the whole volume at once. So later on, whenever I reviewed a DVD that contained less than 12/13 episodes, I always made sure to use this style.