April 11, 2010

False Advertising


The official Funimation page for Spice and Wolf features an ad that is deeply misleading.  The commercial seems to utilize EVERY SINGLE SCENE where Holo is nekkid in the entire 13 episode series.

A large percentage of fanboys that decide to buy the show based on this ad alone will be deeply disappointed.

Likely many of those who might enjoy the series will  be put off by it.
 (In fairness, the Opening Credits are only a little better in this regard)




 I thoroughly enjoyed this show (which is based not on a manga, but rather on a series of Japanese light novels.)

A pagan wolf goddess manages to release herself from the village wheat field to which she was long ago bound by taking up up in a bale of wheat (!?) that is in the possession of a roving peddler in the land of PsudomedievalhistoriEurope.

The Goddess, who calls herself 'Holo the Wise Wolf' has long been weary of being bound to the land and is asks the trader, one Craft Lawrence, to take her to her home which is in the far north.


Art by Juu Ayakura,

The unlikely duo goes from town to town trading pelts for apples and apples for wheat and generally give the audience a lesson in barter level economics.

The show is clever, thoughtful and has a rather dry sense of humor. It is likely rather TOO dry for a lot of people but it really hit home with me.

I suppose this is technically  a magical girlfriend show, however, the male lead is neither a cypher nor a nebbish and in a marked departure from most such shows Craft almost immediately takes action to ensure that Holo can leave him at any time. The two compliment each other very nicely. Their relationship is sane and mature, and it did not creep me out.

So maybe this ISN'T a magical girlfriend show after all.

The dialog is intelligent,  and this is complemented by a superb English dub, with Brina Palencia absolutely hitting it out of the park as Holo, 

The Funimation DVD includes the complete first series.


Posted by: The Brickmuppet at 10:31 PM | Comments (3) | Add Comment
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1 Sure it's a magical girlfriend series.  As is common in these things, the girlfriend terrifies the protagonist, although usually the aspect of terror has more to do with gynophobia than Lawrence's reasonable fear that Holo might devour secondary or incidental characters in a fit of godly pique.

And the way that the first arc concerns an involuted Grisham's Law triple-level financial scam argues that the economics are considerably further than barter-economy.  I'd characterize it as high Renaissance, just without guns.

Good news, though.  FUNimation's mis-representation of the fanservice quotient must have made it enough of a hit to get the license for the second season, they announced Spice and Wolf II last month.

Posted by: Mitch H. at Mon Apr 12 14:54:21 2010 (jwKxK)

2
And the way that the first arc concerns an involuted Grisham's Law triple-level financial scam argues that the economics are considerably further than barter-economy.  I'd characterize it as high Renaissance, just without guns.

Good points, but remember, the economy of Pre Renaissance Europe was more sophisticated than it gets credit for.

  It's also possible that the/a Renaissance is just starting out elsewhere.  Remember the trading companies home offices are mentioned as being pretty distant. I certainly get the impression that the region is in transition.

  I liked the 'black swan' moment.

Posted by: The Brickmuppet at Mon Apr 12 21:49:48 2010 (NkKu7)

3 I put it into the Renaissance because of the varied and extensive gold currency, which wasn't that common outside of the Eastern Roman Empire until, like, there wasn't really one any more.  Also, for my definitions, "High Renaissance" is post-Black-Death. There doesn't seem to be any serious serfdom going on, nor is there any mention of the "town air" phenomenon, which means post-feudal.

I liked the black swan bit, but more for its pretty effective demonstration of how credit works on the ground floor, and how it *doesn't* work when things are going wrong for the merchant.

Posted by: Mitch H. at Tue Apr 13 10:33:02 2010 (jwKxK)

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