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Penguindrum Collection 1
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Top Customer Reviews
That disclaimer out of the way, Mawaru Penguindrum is a philosophical masterpiece. The main topic is free-will vs destiny. There is also quite a bit of time spent on perception vs reality, and the meaning and nature of family. But to me the topic that distinguishes the series is the role of others in self-definition and self-worth... Namely, that an individual is defined by their contrast with others, and no individual can continue to value himself unless he is also loved by another.
Let me give two examples... The first is the animation of the background characters. Background characters such as random people walking on the street are depicted as white blob-figures--like what you would see on a public restroom door. At first I thought this was evidence of a low budget, but as I began to understand the series I realized that it emphasizes the main point. A person does not become truly human in the eye of the observer until the observer knows something about them. The background characters have no individuality, no motion, they are nothing but blank scenery. Since we know nothing about these characters, they cannot become truly human in our minds, and the series emphasizes this point by depicting them with no individuality.Read more ›
Now the reason for only 3 stars - I really wish another company besides Sentai had gotten this series. One that would have done a better job. I was watching the subs and they really weren't good. At first I thought maybe it's just because I watched the fansubbed version so many times that I was used to their wording, but no. It seems like Sentai was really careless with the subs. At one point Kanba says "we gotta got hold of Uncle." Gotta got? Didn't anyone check these things? There are more instances where I found myself wondering "how careless were the people who subbed this thing?"
Aside from the errors, there were some changes to the script. The most notable change was changing the series' catch phrase from "survival strategy" to "survival tactic" in the subs. Another example I can think of off the top of my head is when Kanba (in episode 1) said his speech at the end; instead of saying "Dear God, is he really human? Just wondering," he says "could God...really be human? Yeah right." Uh, what? I won't post the whole speech, but I will say that doesn't even make sense in the context of what he's talking about. The first line does - he's talking about if someone loved another person in spite of their DNA or fate, could that person cast those things aside and still be considered human? The second line has him asking a philosophical question about the nature of God out of left field.
It's just sloppy work all the way around. I'm torn now - on the one hand I really want to buy the DVDs and support a series that gave me so much joy. On the other hand, I don't want to support Sentai's shoddy work.
The anime starts out with a loving family of brothers, Shōma Takakura (blue hair) and Kanba Takakura (red hair) and a cute little sister, Himari Takakura. They go to the aquarium, but then Himari collapses and is pronounced dead. She immediately comes back to life due to the strange penguin hat she was wearing. She claims that the two brothers must find something called the Penguindrum so she will remain alive. The three of them are assisted by three cute little penguins that only they can see. On their mission, the brothers meet a girl named Ringo Oginome, who exhibits some strange behavior like stalking their homeroom teacher and wanting her sister's desires to come to fruition by any means necessary.
The first half of the series is somewhat lighthearted and comical in appearance, but the second half is a lot darker and starts answering the viewer's many questions throughout the series. Trying to explain any more of the series is just ludicrous because of the many plot devices and strange occurrences in the show. To summarize, the show is about penguins and apples at its core. It is also the latest anime from Kunihiko Ikuhara, the director of Revolutionary Girl Utena, which is also a very good anime; maybe even better than this show.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
it's odd, and we're interested but hoping the second set clears up some questions.Published 8 months ago by Kikiwink
This is one of the most bizarre and confusing animes I have ever witnessed. However, it is entertaining and hooks you until you finish it and try to understand what it's all about. Read morePublished 13 months ago by Jed
I cannot recommend this show enough. It's a show that gets a reputation of being overwrought with wild surreal imagery. This is a little true. Read morePublished 15 months ago by feathersfall
Penguindrum (Known as "Mawaru Penguindrum", Lit. "Spinning Penguingrum" in Japan) is one of the Greatest anime series of all time. Read morePublished 17 months ago by SSJGOKU31
Penguindrum is an amazing series. It is very unique and I'd recommend it to anyone who enjoys mystery/slice of life anime.Published 23 months ago by Sarious
Sentai Filmworks gave us a 1080i transfer when the Japanese audience over in Japan got 1080P transfers on their Blu-ray discs. This means the U.S. Read morePublished on July 5, 2014 by jake clean
I really really love this anime and i've watched it before but now i'm able to purchase it. My only complain is the subtitles are big, chunky, yellow and annoying.Published on May 25, 2014 by Katie