Hell Girl: Two Mirrors Complete Collection
DVD | Box Set
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Whenever there has been Hell to pay, Ai Enma has been the collector. Whatever damnation you wish on another, she can deliver. At the cost of your own soul, of course. This is why she is known as the Hell Girl. Remorseless and implacable, she is the physical embodiment of revenge. But now, after endless years serving the depraved demands of vengeance obsessed mortals, cracks have begun to form in her once emotionless faade and she must take a journey she never expected, to answer the question she's never dared to ask before: when you're already in Hell, are you allowed to die? The volatile emotions that Ai has kept entombed in her soul have begun to exhume themselves and the answer lies buried in HELL GIRL - TWO MIRRORS - THE COMPLETE COLLECTION!
Top customer reviews
Quality of the storyline of the episodes varies (there are a few that are quite weak), but the stories are more complex and ambivalent than in the first season. As before, there is a strong message that might does not make right, and that individual conscience matters more than convention and prevailing opinion. There is no magical righting of wrongs - in one episode Ai says explicitly that she is not a champion of justice - but the entire series takes a sympathetic view of the weak, the excluded and the wronged. And as before, the stories do not shy away from uncomfortable topics: derangement, sadism, family dysfunction, sexual obsession, and incest.
Ai's three main companions play prominent roles in the unfolding of the stories. Second season is largely built around them, and they develop into compassionate, witty and likeable characters. They are supernatural figures from fairy tale, but they move around in the modern world in a natural and relaxed way, which is very charming.
Transition of the character of Ai to the second season is somewhat disappointing. It is clear at the end of the first season that Ai Enma is a tragic figure, victim of her community's folly and hounded by revulsion against her own fate: she was killed as an adolescent girl (shoujo) at the threshold of adult life. There are lyrical intimations of her approaching adulthood in the scenes immediately preceding her capture and death, contrasted by the most unsettling scene of the first season, her memorable "danse macabre" through the burning village.
Second season opens with a rather sentimentally preachy follow-up on that dance, in which Ai's fate is explained as punishment for her vengefulness. First season had built up the portrait of Ai as a persona frozen in time, her emotional unfolding arrested by the monstrous wrong that was done to her. Second season falls short of either developing or resolving that picture, as if the creation had outgrown the imagination of its creators, although the season's ending does give the character of Ai something of a meaningful closure after all.
The end is not disappointing, it was great. Even with the main character Ai showing her pain for the madness being involved, this is as I said the best one of all the Hell Girl DVDS out there now, period.