B Gata H Kei: Yamada’s First Time- The Complete Series Blu-ray/DVD Combo Pack Review
While flawed, “Yamada’s First Time” has a certain charm to it.
In this 12 episode anime series, a popular, picky teen girl (Yamada) dreams of having sex with 100 guys. The only problem is she’s a virgin. She wants to have her first time with a fellow virgin and so she sets her sights on an ordinary guy (Takashi) to lose her virginity with. Unfortunately, nothing ever seems to go right as either Takashi or Yamada chicken out and run away. To make matters worse, Takashi starts falling for Yamada and vice versa which proves problematic as Yamada only wanted to use Takashi for sex in the beginning. The bulk of the series sees Yamada trying to seduce Takashi in different settings (a photography room, a school festival, etc.). Other plots involve a lady friend of Takashi (Miyano) and Kyouka whom Yamada views as competiton.
Normally in teen comedies, the story is told through the perspective of the male characters, but that’s not the case here. ‘Yamada’ takes an admirably different approach by telling the story from the point of view of the female teen. Equally unique is the anime’s genre which plays like an 80’s American sex comedy. For once, the perverted fan service often seen in anime series has a reason to be present here since it’s a part of the story/universe these characters inhabit. Thankfully, the series doesn’t go too over the top with it either which is refreshing.
Story aside, the premise does have its limitations. The series of failed attempts of Yamada trying to score with Takashi does feel drug out by the time the series ends. It’s charming, amusing, and goofy at times to be sure, but I was hoping the series would have more to say. Another issue is the bizarre God Of Sex/Cupid Deity stuff that pops up every now and then. While it has a purpose, I mostly found it distracting.
Summary “Yamada’s First Time” isn’t perfect, but it’s an entertaining anime comedy.
The picture quality generally looks fantastic. It’s certainly leaps and bounds better than the DVD picture. On the downside, the overexposed white colors problem does happen here again.
This set contains English Dolby TrueHD 5.1 and Japanese Dolby TrueHD 2.0 audio tracks. The English dub works here. The speedy voice delivery fits the frantic comedic style. The majority of the Japanese track is fine, but the Yamada voice actress is a bit annoying.
* Trailers for “Rosario + Vampire,” “Strike Witches,” “Fairy Tail,” “Princess Jellyfish,” “Birdy The Mighty: Decode,” “My Bride Is A Mermaid,” “Heaven’s Lost Property,” “Hetalia World Series,” “Sekirei: Pure Engagement,” and Funimation.com.
* DVD copy.
* A laidback, but typically pointless episode 1 commentary with the English ADR director, the English Yamada voice actress, and the English Kotsuda voice actor.
* Textless opening and closing songs.
* Episode 11 commentary by two of the English dub writers. More of the same.
*3 minutes of goofy outtakes.
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