Posts Tagged ‘tytania’
|Tytania Collection 1
Released By: Sentai Filmworks
In a galaxy far, far away there is an evil empire called Tytania which travels outwards and conquers planets to expand its rule. On the planet of Euria, the leadership hears that Tytania is on the way for them and puts out a skeleton crew led by Fan Hyulick to “stop” the invasion. After a bit of luck and creative maneuvering, he manages to chase off the empire but is exiled into space for his trouble eventually landing him with the rebel forces flittering around space. This isn’t really about him though.
Headquartered on the space station Uraniborg, Tytania is a clan led by their lord and four dukes: the warrior Zarlish, the manipulative Idrice, the suave and collected Jusran and the anal retentive Ariabert. Thrown off guard by the unexpected defeat, the clan is frazzled as they must gather together and recover. As the clan regains itself and continues to launch plans to expand their empire, the four dukes resume their positioning to become the best in the battlefields as they attempt to be chosen as the successor to the current clan lord.
Good and the Bad
I knew that Tytania was going to be difficult to get through the first time I sat down to watch some of it. I started it one night, watched 3 episodes and promptly put it at the bottom of my review pile. It is just that much fun.
From the first few seconds of its opening theme, it’s easy to get a feel for what you can expect from Tytania. A space opera in pretty much all respects, the series opens by introducing the struggle between the two very different sides. On the side of good we have Fan Hyulick, a kid who was supposed to lose a battle against the evil empire but makes it clear after he wins that he just wants to enjoy life, not be bogged down by needless politics. On the side of evil we have Tytania, an empire run by a supreme clan lord and his egocentric four dukes. All of the men on this side have multiple things on their minds the most of which being the absolute rule of Tytania over the galaxy and the future of the clan after the current lord dies.
Spending the first couple of episodes with Fan, the series introduces a hero who is easy going and carefree. Easy going is not a personality flaw but this trait goes so far into the extreme that most of his screen time is just irritating. Luckily after he accepts his fate, the series pushes him out of the way fairly quickly until they’re ready to bring him back for his major mid season catharsis and trust me, it will be large. Unfortunately the build up leading up to it is so drawn out that by the time the audience sees just how big of a tragedy has to take place to ignite the change it becomes laughable.
This half of the series really isn’t about Fan much anyway though. He’s there for the beginning and he gradually works his way back into the story towards the end. But for a good chunk of the middle, this is a series all about Tytania and the political maneuverings happening behind the scenes. Digging deep into the details, the four dukes serving the clan lord are the ones who are on the screen for the bulk of the time. With all of them wanting to gain military successes and position themselves to be chosen as successor, there are a lot of backroom deals and plots that will be thrown around. Their lives are a constant struggle and while there is always a conflict, you’ll never see anyone confront it directly. If you think this sounds like 13 episodes of passive aggressive royalty very occasionally interrupted by space fights you’d be right.
I admit, I’m a sucker for political drama and intrigue. I do enjoy seeing how the inner workings bring together the larger picture and how those on the inside shape it for others. In this case, the four dukes and the empire itself already felt like a larger picture that was only becoming a slightly larger picture of itself. The interactions between the various characters never felt like dynamic changes were being started. Every episode, characters would launch their new plans to gain a better position and watch the moves of the others. This leads to long dialogue exchanges to figure out how it is actually affecting them each time: and they’re filled with logic rather than emotion and drag onwards for many seemingly eternal minutes.
And perhaps it would’ve all been saved if I could have at least looked at something nice while watching it all play out. Produced by Artland in 2008, the animation in this series rarely looks particularly impressive. Most of the time, Tytania gets by with looking like a perfectly average space series that has no real amazing properties. Some of the CG space sequences manage to stand out for having a moment that looks particularly good or weak (there are plenty of both scattered throughout) but the animation is not the saving grace for this series.
Just hearing the opening animation gave me an idea on what kind of background score was going to accompany this series and for the most part I found that I was right on. After a booming operatic opening theme, the music throughout Tytania is suitably grandiose for its setting. Always filled with full orchestra themes that are completely led by brass melodies, the music will always do its best to provide a hugely ominous sense of tension or grandeur to play towards the grand scope of the universe in which the characters reside. And yet it never feels like this galaxy or these characters are ever that particularly impressive to begin with and so the music ends up just feeling over the top.
The one place where the theme music diverts from this love for the brass is during Fan’s scenes. During his screen time, the music always shifts to a very distinguishable flute theme that has its own wandering melody. You’ll always be able to point it out because it sounds like it came straight from an RPG released in the early part of this decade.
It’s not that I hated Tytania, I just really didn’t like it and will be glad to never see it again (there’s a difference). Boring, drawn out and filled with twists that most people in the audience will see coming this is not an amazing space epic or deeply involving galactic space politics… it sure wants to be though. Slow and clunky, Tytania just tries to spread too much over too long and eventually talking the audience into a slumber. This isn’t the new space series you’re looking for, this isn’t anything that anyone is looking for.
A new press release announcing Sentai Filmworks October releases went out this morning announcing the licenses of the 2007 romantic comedy produced by J.C. Staff, KimiKiss pure rouge and the 2009 action series from P.A. Works, CANAAN (with the latter getting a DVD and Blu ray release). Oh but of course that’s not all there is to the month as also scheduled for release are the conclusion of Tytania and a complete Tears to Tiara Collection on DVD and Blu ray.
Breaking it down, here’s the month of October for Sentai:
10/5 – KimiKiss pure rogue Collection 1 (49.98)
10/12 – Tytania Collection 2 (49.98)
10/19 – Tears to Tiara Complete Collection (DVD: 69.98, Blu ray: 89.98)
10/26 – CANAAN Complete Collection (DVD: 59.98, Blu ray: 69.98)
While we’re on the subject of Sentai Filmworks and Section 23, they’ve also recently announced the details of their Blue Drop and Ghost Hound upgrade programs for those who wish to have the sets complete with an English dub. Like their previous upgrade programs, those who purchased the sets originally can fill out the forms located on Right Stuf and receive the brand new sets for half the retail price.
And while I’m sitting here thinking about it, what does Sentai Filmworks do with all of the sets that get returned to them for upgrades? Recycle? Re-sell? Throw them into a dimensional portal underneath their warehouse? Build forts? Hm, wish someone could be a super sneaky spy and find out the mystery of the returned DVDs.
A new press release was waiting for me when I woke up this morning from Sentai Filmworks announcing their new August lineup. It starts in a pretty standard fashion with a re-release and continuing melodrama:
Princess Resurrection Complete Collection – 8/3
La Corda O’Oro ~ Primo Passo Collection 2 – 8/10
Rounding out the rest of the month however are three new titles which includes what looks two Bandai rescues. Starting the month, Sentai has announced Sola Complete Collection for August 3rd and Shigofumi: Letters from the Departed on 8/17.
Both of these titles have odd histories in the US; they were originally licensed by Bandai Visual USA. After Bandai Visual failed and got out of the game, Bandai picked up the licenses and released them as individual sets last year. Now it appears that Sentai will be releasing a brand new set almost a year later. I’m not entirely sure if this means that license was bought outright from Bandai or rescued in some fashion. I do have an email out to get clarification so when/if I hear back, I’ll be sure to report back. Getting back to the series themselves, the story summaries in the press release read:
A boy with a secret he does not know. A girl who cannot live beneath the sun. And the sister whose own mysterious past ties them together. Welcome to SOLA, the extraordinary series selected as best anime of 2007 in a poll of Japanese viewers, winning double the votes of its nearest competitor and over a third of the 2 million vote total! After a chance encounter while preparing to photograph a sunrise, Yorito Morimiya finds his life becoming dangerously involved with a strange girl named Matsuri. By giving her shelter in his own home while his sister lies sick in the hospital, Yorito sets into motion a sequence of events that will shake everything he thought he knew about his world to the core. For even under a pure blue sky, there are secrets that begin on Earth and reach past the heavens, secrets that must never be revealed!
Shigofumi: Letters from the Departed:
Are some secrets best kept with the dead? For most Shigofumi Mail Carriers, charged with delivering messages from the recently departed to those left behind, the question is purely rhetorical as most Carriers are dead themselves and past the point of caring about the still breathing. The solemn girl known as Fumika, however, is all too aware of the mortal perspective, for she is still aging: an indicator that she is somehow, mysteriously, still alive. Yet, neither Fumika’s own personal tragedy nor the knowledge that her mail may be a mixed blessing at best will stay her grim determination to make her morbid rounds. Though the postal scales of fate may be eternally shifted, Fumika will make sure each posthumous posting from the ultimate dead letter office reaches its intended target, even when there’s deadly postage due!
Finally, rounding out the month Sentai has licensed one brand new series with the sci-fi adventure series, Tytania on 8/24. The 26 episode Artland produced series premiered last fall and just finished airing in Japan a few weeks ago. Here’s the story summary if you’re unfamiliar:
Through fear and conquest, the Empire of Valdana holds the future of most of human space within it’s the iron hands … and for generations, those hands have belonged to the Landless Lords of the ruling Tytania dynasty. But now the foundation of the empire is crumbling, pockets of rebellion are forming and when a mission sent to punish the city-state of Euriya is shockingly defeated, the man responsible becomes the target of a galaxy-wide manhunt! For Fan Hyurlick, architect of Tytania’s first defeat, glory becomes desperation as his own side betrays him. Now Fan must not only save his own life, but somehow turn the tables on opponents who have whole worlds to command!
So what does everyone think? Exciting August or a month of things you bought last summer?
<Image ©Sola Project>
Full press release below the cut