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Hetalia - Axis Powers Complete Series - Classic
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Forget everything you learned in history class, and imagine all the nations of the world as cute guys hanging out on a wildly inappropriate reality show. Now, toss in every stereotype ever and prepare to pledge allegiance to your favorite superpower in Hetalia Axis Powers! Maybe you'll surrender to Italy's charms. He's a sweetie who's always got a noodle in his mouth and he's BFF with blue-eyed Germany and shy Japan. Sounds nice, right? Of course, their friendship sort of causes World War II, but is that really such a big deal? Not if it means those adorable allies France, America, and England will be stormin' the beach!
- Aspect Ratio : 1.77:1
- Is Discontinued By Manufacturer : No
- MPAA rating : s_medNotRated Unrated (Not Rated)
- Product Dimensions : 7.75 x 6 x 0.5 inches; 6.4 Ounces
- Item model number : 7914
- Director : Scott Sager
- Media Format : Multiple Formats, Animated, Box set, Color, NTSC, Widescreen
- Run time : 4 hours and 20 minutes
- Release date : July 9, 2013
- Actors : Todd Haberkorn, Patrick Seitz, Christopher Bevins
- Dubbed: : English
- Subtitles: : English
- Studio : Funimation Prod
- ASIN : B00CDV4I4I
- Number of discs : 1
- Best Sellers Rank: #31,528 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
- Customer Reviews:
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But other than that, it's just fun-- Basically every country is stereotyped into a character-- So America is lazy, self-centered, and eats a lot of burgers... If you can't laugh at that-- then I do NOT recommend this show to you. If that gave you a bit of a chuckle, well, then the other characters would probably crack you up too. (Italy: "Make Pasta! Not War!")
She also has the Hetalia Paint It White movie and says she likes that better than the series boxed set, though--
What she doesn't like about the series boxed set is that they mix the WWII parts with the Chibi-Hetalia parts, and she said that gets confusing and she wishes they would've put all the chibi-Hetalia parts together and all the WWII parts together. (The Chibi ones are the characters in cute little form and represents the country/characters as children-- so the story telling has a fractured timeline that she doesn't enjoy, I guess is what she is saying...)
Anyway-- it can be racey and inappropriate for younger viewers... so I may call this PG-13 or perhaps even a year or two older...
It's loosely based on WW2 with the Axis and Allied Powers going at each other, with cowardly pasta-loving romantic Italy as the title character. This anime makes fun of the different stereotypes and generalizations from each country and turns them in something lighthearted and thoroughly funny. And quite possibly persuade you to go into deeper research for the facts. Despite the episodes being only 5 minutes, there’s no anime I can think of that’s using it’s short running time so efficiently!
It is not perfect however. Some story segments are predictable, rehashed, or not pushed further. Some segments I didn't really enjoy were "America's Storage Cleaning", which it was simply dragged on a bit long when they could've used that time to tell other stories.
Music is fittingly whimsical if not a technical marvel. However the ending song "Marukaite Chikyuu" ("Draw a Circle, There's the Earth") is a fantastic anthem song and each of the Allies and Axis Powers get their own cover!
Animation wise, it's cheerful and colorful but like the music, it's nothing to write home about. However veteran animator Masaaki Kannan, creates wonderful character designs and supervise the animation for the series. That being said, it remains eye pleasing and consistent it not breathtaking.
The Japanese version is what you'll expect. High quality voice work, wide and distinct vocal ranges, and well known seiyuus such as Daisuke Namikawa (Tsubasa Reservoir Chronicle) as Italy and Akira Sasanuma (Link, Twilight Princess) as Austria . In this version, various dialects are used as opposed to accents for speech. They really get into character hit the right emotional arcs for their characters, which is slightly diminished in the dub.
The English dub by Funimation, for better or worse, the do more than just use accents and changing the dialogue to suit the English audience better. They would add more historical fact or stereotypes and sometimes come up with a completely new punch line. Along with above average voice acting, it is still a very satisfying experience.
DVD menus are easy to navigate along with a decent amount of extra content. Extras include historical background used for the show, voice actor and director interviews, as well as episode commentaries. Back tracking can be difficult however due to the lack of episode titles and thumbnails. Overall, the DVD content and packaging are probably the best I can ask for.
I cannot say enough on how much I really enjoyed this series. It's a lighthearted but well thought out series with cheery visuals and music. You also can't go wrong with either the Japanese and English as they different approaches. DVD extras are adequate when taking the content of the series as a whole. Highly recommended!
I prefer watching foreign-language productions in their original language so I almost always watch it in Japanese. I did watch part of one episode in English, but did not care for the English voice acting. Of note: the eight DVD commentary tracks are all provided by the English voice actors.
Director Bob Shirahata and some of the Japanese voice actors provide episode overviews and general Hetalia chats, which I really enjoyed. I believe that the overview for episodes 2-7 was available on the original Japanese language version but did not make it onto this product based on something the director stated in the first disc commentary.