Najica Blitz Tactics: Volume 3 Review
The adventures of Najica and Lila are coming to an end. It's time for volume three in this pantylicious series to tie up loose ends and get to the heart of what this show has been trying to get across.
After eight episodes, it's time for Studio Fantasia to start taking Najica Blitz Tactics a little more seriously. That's not to say that they haven't been introducing more dramatic moments but the series has ultimately been about spy adventures, with a bit of character development and plenty of panties thrown in. This time the creators have had to get to the all important part of the story, which asks many questions and offers various scenarios for them to play out.
The main emphasis throughout these episodes is Lila. In the past she has struggled to understand human emotion and etiquette but now she is beginning to learn without quite realising it. She begins to show more affection toward Najica and acknowledges her as being someone she loves. In turn Najica is developing more personal feelings toward Lila, as the pair adopts a mother/daughter relationship. Lila now shadows Najica's movements and copies her characteristics which brings many sweet moments to the final part of this series.
The Studio Fantasia team have continually played on the themes that surround man and machine but kept things to a minimum. For most of the series they have stuck to individual episodes and offered storylines that centre on humaritts and how they interact with humans, as both friend, servant and lover. These themes are more extensively looked at in episodes 9-12.
Note: The following section contains minor spoilers.
As we discovered early on in the series the humaritts have their own individual identities. They are of various types, according to their lettered rank. Some of these humaritts have been more difficult to apprehend then others but one thing that makes them all the same is their origin.
As the series gears toward its climactic finale, Najica and Lila must trace Dr. Ren - the creator of the humaritt models. Since the development of the humaritts she has hidden herself away, underground where she is currently working on her latest project. What the girls don't know is that Ren is developing a new kind of humaritt; a young male by the name of Alpha.
The writers attempt to teach us in the ways of certain ethics, resulting in the feeling of being spoon fed in the latter episodes. I could say that they're easily taking liberties, seeing as we aren't in a time where such things concern us yet. At times, the episodes provide some interesting situations but for all the messages that they try to get across I find myself thinking that I've seen it all before. The only thing that holds my interest now is where Najica and Lila end up, the two characters whose adventures we’ve sat through up until now.
While I found volume three to be a significant step up from the previous volume I was left with not much overall satisfaction. I shall not spoil the end for those who haven't seen the show but I will say that it wraps things up and finishes the series decently enough. I feel that the series should have continued for at least a couple of more episodes because by the end you want a little more of the story to unfold. As it is there is a sense of warmth to the shows end that it may not have exhibited early on in its run.
I am not sure if Studio Fantasia has plans to make a follow up series and frankly I doubt that one is really needed, as I'm just nit-picking because I seemed to get more enjoyment out of the first volume than the latter two. Najica Blitz Tactics has matured as it has continued. The in your face panty shots have less of an impact as you pick up more of the story that takes precedence over the action in the final episode.
Volume three contains the following episodes:
Mission: 009 - The Brave Desert Lion with the Goddess
A rebel leader by the name of Athena is determined to right the world's many wrongs by using force if necessary. Her humaritt servant, Elith suddenly disobeys an order and rebels against her master.
Mission: 010 - The Final Destination of the Battle with Dangerous Love
Najica and Lila are assigned to protect an old friend of Gento's, called Yoshiki who has run away with his humaritt lover, Serina. Dr. Ren has sent out her soldiers to capture Serina who will do anything to protect the life of her love.
Mission: 011 - A Farewell Mission with the Young Girl's Cordiality
The Shinba Industrial team launch an attack on Dr Ren's base. Ren sends out her army of humaritt soldiers, meanwhile Najica and Lila infiltrate her hidden base. Lila soon meets a young boy named Alpha and together they try to find a way to reach Najica.
Mission: 012 - A Gorgeous Agent with the Rose of Destiny in her Heart
Najica finally comes face to face with Dr. Ren and discovers some hidden truths. The military begin to attack from the skies, leaving Najica and Lila with not much time to escape before the city is levelled.
The series continues to impress visually, though this time round I noticed quite a few softer moments, perhaps due to the source material as ADV have supplied very consistent transfers for a lot of their titles.
Like the first volume we have a choice of the original Japanese 2.0 language track or the 5.1 English dub. Both tracks are up to the same standard as heard on volume 1 and 2.
ADV give us similar features as found on the previous volumes.
The series titles credits but without the titles that appear over the nicely animated sequence. There isn't really much worth in having the clean opening and ending sequence in later volumes but ADV continue their trend and supply us with them anyway.
The end theme, again without credits.
Audio Commentary by Kira Vincent Davis (Najica) , Monica Rial (Lila) and ADV series director, David Williams
Another funny commentary graces an ADV title. The girls have come down slightly from their high on the volume 1 track but they're no less crazy. Kira and Monica discuss little pieces of the show but never get into any serious territory. Joining them is David Williams, the director for the English dub version. David doesn't seem to give any more points of interest than the girls and is more into joking about with them. The track is lively and the participants all have a lot of fun. I smiled throughout at their enthusiasm for the series and I look forward to hearing from them in future, hopefully.
Diligent Circle of Ekoda
A four minute piece that goes behind the scenes of the recording of Najica Blitz Tactics opening musical number, featuring various shots of the musicians playing their part in this catchy theme.
Fifteen pages of sketches, from characters and props to set designs.
Trailers for the following series: You're Under Arrest!, King of Bandit Jing, Zaion and Rune Soldier
Well there you have it. Najica Blitz Tactics is very much an enjoyable series with a few interesting plot devices here and there and some warm hearted moments. As a whole series it's a little hit and miss but eventually finds its bearings and finishes reasonably well. As long as you are aware of the fact that this isn't an epic series but a collection of enjoyable adventures then you shouldn't have too much trouble appreciating it.
7 out of 10
8 out of 10
7 out of 10
4 out of 10