A Tag-Team Review of “Digimon Adventure 02″ – Inferior Digi-Iteration [Part 3]

[Welcome back to the 3rd and Final part of our voyage through “Digimon Adventure 02”! Last time, OtakuAndrain and I took a look at the characters, animation and musical offerings of this series…the scores were…lackluster to say the least. Will the final section, “Performances and Production” be enough to pull off a “Come from behind home run” and save the series or will it be a final nail in the Digi-Coffin? Let’s get into it!]

Performances and Production

Cajun Samurai – [::The Demonic Evangelion Unit-01 behind him rages again::]

OtakuAndrain – [::Thanatos expands his coffins wide screaming::]… I think we both have a lot to say…

Cajun Samurai – Oh yeah. You know, I really, TRULY don’t know what to say about this one. There was no real logical reason for the writers to make the decisions that they did to the script.

OtakuAndrain – English or Japanese…

Cajun Samurai – I can understand wanting to edit out a gun here or there for the kids…I could MAYBE understand editing out the odd Japanese pun or wordplay–after all, the licensors have to market this for kids on a TV Broadcast. But…to…to… Andrain…why don’t you start us off.

OtakuAndrain – First of all I accuse this series of Plot Dangling! [::Slams his hands on the conveniently placed desk and points::] IF YOU’RE GOING TO INTRODUCE A NEW PLOT ENVIORMENT AT LEAST EXPLAIN WHAT THE HECK IS GOING ON!

Cajun Samurai – HOLD IT! [::Slams hands on desk and points::] Just so the viewer’s know, Andrain is referring to the episode “His Masters Voice”.

OtakuAndrain – In this episode they introduced ‘The Dark Ocean’ where stuff happened and it was a dark and evil place that kidnapped Kari because well the Queen of Light is apparently the Queen of Darkness too and eventually they rescue her but a HUGE freaking Digimon appears from the depth coated in shadow and…. That’s it. The subject was never mentioned or revisited… At all… Ever… It was a useless episode about an extremely interesting place…That DID NOTHING.

Cajun Samurai – The creators just left it out in the open–they just let it float in Plot Land without coming back for it. Now…upon my re-watching “Adventure 02” in its native tongue, I might assume that when Ken is going through his whole “Where is my heart” phase, he actually visits the Dark Ocean which causes his Digi-vice to transform from V.1 to V.2…. But…Aside from that, nothing else is heard of it.

OtakuAndrain – That was a place where something could have happened?! BUT NOTHING!

Cajun Samurai – The only thing that happened in that episode was that Takari fans made like Miles Edgeworth in court and got the evidence needed to prove beyond the shadow of a doubt that Takeru and Hikari were a couple…

OtakuAndrain – Which was Dub only as I recall?

Cajun Samurai – Yep… Only in the dub does TK offer any kind of hint that he cares for Kari on a level deeper than friendship. In the original dub, TK is trying to get Kari to stop depending on Tai so much…Speaking of Dub…let’s get into the writing of this one… Now, I admit, when I first saw Digimon Adventure 02 all those years ago for the first time, I didn’t have clue one about Japanese culture… So, I didn’t think too much of it when I heard that the old guard, Joe, Matt, Izzy, Sora, and Tai were going to HIGH school.

OtakuAndrain – Except Joe was the only one in High school…

Cajun Samurai – Right…imagine my surprise when I discovered that the original digi-Destined save for TK and Kari were really in MIDDLE school…MIDDLE SCHOOL…. And the new lines of Digi-Destined were in ELEMENTARY. Okay, so our characters are in elementary school. That’s fine. But what I don’t find particularly fine is the fact that the youngest member of our group, Cody, has a voice of a kid going through PUBERTY.

OtakuAndrain – Hahaha… yeah…

Cajun Samurai – The original actress for Cody in Japan, Megumi Urawa, was PERFECT…She played Cody age-specific–that is, a 2nd Grader.

OtakuAndrain – And the Americans… got a pragmatic guy of about 30.

Cajun Samurai – Here’s the killer–[::The Demonic Evangelion Unit-01 growls behind him::] Oy! Not you! Anyway, the actress for Cody, Philece Sampler, also played our Hime [Princess], Mimi!

OtakuAndrain – Which makes little to no sense…?

Cajun Samurai – Emphasis on “No”… In any case, Next up on the list is Brian Donovan as Daisuke “Davis” Motomiya. Now, I wouldn’t have a PROBLEM with Davis, but… Why…did the writers…feel the need…to make Davis even DUMBER than he already was?!

OtakuAndrain – I mean he was pretty dumb…

Cajun Samurai – But when you make your character CONSISTENTLY get another main characters name wrong… TWO LETTERS…I can understand that it was kind of meant to be a running joke… But dang, even Forrest Gump ran so far before he got tired!

OtakuAndrain – [::sweatdrops::]

Cajun Samurai – Okay…your turn…

OtakuAndrain – You know I saw lot in that Anime and one of its movies specifically how we got WarGreymon, Seraphimon and Magnadramon. YET EVEN THEN only “THE LEADER” got a mega form… not just a Mega form! A Mega Form Mode Change!

Cajun Samurai – I guess being the leader has its perks. But yeah, that is kinda odd… I mean, in 01, both Matt and Tai’s digimon had souped-up mega forms.

OtakuAndrain – So yeah… I was rather upset with that… On top of the Final Boss… I mean come on REALLY GUYS.

Cajun Samurai – MaloMyotismon…I can kind of see what they were going for…but originality points was lost with me.

OtakuAndrain – NO, That was dumb… Demon and his evolutions were already over-used even in this series that he comes back to troll. Recall in Japan Myotismon is named Vandemon.

Cajun Samurai – Noted..

OtakuAndrain – Having him come back later and then… THROW THEM INTO THE WORLD OF WISHES WHERE YOUR DEISRES ARE STRENGTH was too damn lame even for me…

Cajun Samurai – Yeah…and even the way that it’s presented…it just seems cheesy and predictable. I mean, we’ve known these characters for over 50 episodes, so me even LONGER, we kinda-sorta have an idea of what they desire most…do we REALLY need it spelled out???

OtakuAndrain – It was just bad all around… Really, really bad…

Cajun Samurai – Yeah… I agree. Okay, do we have anything else under production that we need to cover? Do you have any thoughts about the new TK V/A?

OtakuAndrain – They needed one. It wasn’t a bad voicing I’ve heard worse…

Cajun Samurai – Yeah, Doug Erholtz does a good job…and he brings a good performance out of a role that, let’s be honest, could’ve been developed more. And I have to admit, Ken’s English dubbed voice, Derek Stephen Prince is really good–he can play the over-the-top bad guy…but can bring it down and play Emo well.

OtakuAndrain – Fine I’ll agree.

Cajun Samurai – Last and least…we have Yolei. Tifanie Christun…I just don’t know…

OtakuAndrain – It wasn’t bad, don’t be too hard on her…

Cajun Samurai – It wasn’t BAD…but there was something that…well… Can’t put my finger on it, but it didn’t stand out as being a unique performance. Ah, I can’t take points for her performance though…it was passable. Besides, I don’t think there are many more points I can take…

OtakuAndrain – Mm-Hmm, I agree…

Cajun Samurai – With that, your scores sir.

OtakuAndrain – Oh boy… Well seeing WarGreymon fighting BlackWargreymon was fun… The Digimon Kaiser arc was also amusing… It wasn’t all bad but I can only give 5/12.5. It just didn’t work after time passes.

Cajun Samurai – There’s an old saying: “Time makes fools of us all”. This is one production that fits that bill. While some of the performances were outstanding, and some were passable, I just can’t get my head around what some of the English dub writers were thinking/smoking when they wrote this. At the end of the day, even if a production is made for a juvenile audience, you should put your best foot forward and make that production the best you can. 4.5/12.5

Cajun Samurai Score – 4.5/12.5
Otaku Andrain Score – 5/12.5


Scoring Summary:

Story Breakdown – 10/25
Characters – 17.5/25
Animation – 10/12.5
Music – 10.25/12.5
Performance and Production – 9.5/25

Final Score – 57.25/100 = 57.25% – (F)

Conclusion

OtakuAndrain – Did we break the record with those numbers boss?

Cajun Samurai – [::looks at the score and winces::] Oh yeah…we really did a number on this one. But, at the end of the day, I do believe we were pretty fair…

OtakuAndrain – [::Adjusts his glasses::] this did me no pleasure…

Cajun Samurai – No…You’re right. But, it had to be done. [::removes his glasses and cleans them::] You do know that at this very moment our fan girls are swooning right now…the few that we have, right?

OtakuAndrain – Why’s that exactly?

Cajun Samurai – Glasses-Wearing Boys…you know Legendary Girl A would have a field day…

OtakuAndrain – Ha… Can’t be helped I’ve done it for too long.

Cajun Samurai – Yeah, got a point there–[::his cell phone beeps::] Oh, I got a message…[::looks at his phone::] “Breaking News: WordPress Female Readers Suffer Massive Nosebleeds…” Oh my…

OtakuAndrain – [::leans on his Katana::] I’m an Otaku you know… I swore off the 3D. Anyway… You know what today is right?

Cajun Samurai – Nope… Surprise me. We could use some cheering up.

OtakuAndrain – Last day of Spring Comiket, learned it myself earlier. This next week should be fun.

Cajun Samurai – Cool…good sales on the last day?

OtakuAndrain – So I hear.

Cajun Samurai – Awesome… In any case, let’s sum this one up. After you…

OtakuAndrain – This Anime was a poor shadow of its predecessor. Looking back now I am shocked at how much I enjoyed it. Slopping writing, poor characterization, English dubbing doing its thing… this was a mess and it showed.

Cajun Samurai – Sadly, I have to agree. This was NOT the way “Digimon Adventure” should’ve gone out. The series deserves much, much more than this. Now, don’t get me wrong, there are some enjoyable bits in this series, and I admit to being a big fan of Season 02 back in the day, but, as I grew older, and my definition of what “good” anime is evolved, “Digimon Adventure 02” doesn’t really meet those standards. However, I will remember it fondly as being part of the gateway that lead me into anime and, by extension, writing.

OtakuAndrain – Hmm… well in any case, tune in next time when I see if Season 3 fares better than this…

Cajun Samurai – As for me, after I get this edited and posted, I’m going to be getting things setup for our “Back to School” Month here on the blog. Yeah, I know, going back to school sucks. But hopefully we can give you some good shows to help make the voyage back to the classrooms a little more bearable…or at least give you something to read during those LONG orientation sessions. Remember, you can ALWAYS reach us on our Official Twitter page @CajunSamurai101 or send us an email at TheCajunSamurai@hotmail.com! Until Next time, I’m Cajun Samurai…

OtakuAndrain – And my name is OtakuAndrain. Thank you for joining us!

[And thus ends our review of “Digimon Season 02”. Yeah, we know the score sucks, but if there’s one thing “The Cajun Samurai” prides itself on is the fact that we will tell you straight about an anime–nostalgia be darned. Coming up next, OtakuAndrain, brave soul that he is, decided to take it upon himself to review the third series in the “Digimon” saga.  This season pretty much takes everything we’ve learned about the digimon and the digital world and tosses it out the window…but is this for the better? Can a reboot break the digi-tie that we find ourselves in? Only one way to find out. Grab your digi-vices and standby as OtakuAndrain enters the world of…]

Digimon Tamers

[P.S – Oh, and by the way, if anyone gets the “Come from behind home run” anime reference and writes the answer in the comments, then you get one free anime movie review from yours truly. Two if you tweet it to us @CajunSamurai101 !]

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4 thoughts on “A Tag-Team Review of “Digimon Adventure 02″ – Inferior Digi-Iteration [Part 3]

  1. Well, I’ll just have you guys know that I outgrew my nosebleed phase years ago! (Now where is that Kleenex box?)

    Sorry I didn’t comment on the other parts of the Digimon reviews, but great posts, guys! Andrain, I especially look forward to your review on Tamers, seeing as that was the season I watched on a regular basis in elementary school. 🙂

  2. Well, this is almost exactly a year later, so I’m pretty late, but I always thought the strongest parts of 02 were the bits surrounding the now-older original digidestined. I think it would have been a much stronger series if it had tried to develop their characters and relations more as they grew into middle school/high school. (I actually don’t really care which, though I’ll admit that even after I learned that they were supposed to be in middle school in the original Japanese anime, I found some aspects of that a little hard to believe, mainly them being on height with most of the adult characters, Matt being in a locally popular band, etc.) Anyway, I think that would have been a much more compelling show than one that demanded that I now care about Davis, Cody, and Yolei, in my opinion a much less likeable and much more irritating set of characters.

  3. Might I also like to say two years later that 02 had an unusually large number of writers working on it, which explains why the writing was so sloppy. They were fighting each other for creative rights! Basically, one of the guys left, leaving one of his plots open (guess which one. Go on, I dare you). He later comes back as the lead writer for Tamers.

    I think the Director also said she created Daisuke to be purposefully underdeveloped or annoying. A foil to Ken. Basically they cared about no one in this story but Ken. That’s why Miyako and Iori are forgettable. (Sorry. Iori was my least favourite of the new cew simply for being stoic and uninterestng. His backstory was compelling though) After a while I found myself mostly watching for Takeru and Hikari. But like the other two, they were pushed to the back in favour of Ken and Daisuke. How in the living heck is it that they have a smaller crew and yet have worse characterization? Just… HOW?!

    Don’t even get me started on how most of the frigging plot for 02 is the end result of a Japanese-only video game. That ticks me off. Or the ending of 02. I think everyone in the world mostly agrees that ending sucked. I wouldn’t be surprised to see multiple fanfiction rewrites on ff.net. Speaking of, Socks, you retired from fanficcing? I’m going to revive mine.

    Great review, guys. I agreed with a lot of your points. Though I wish you guys would have gotten more into detail with it. I mean your banter was cute but I was hoping for complete evisceration. Maybe a girl should take this into her own hands. Knowing me I’d comment mostly on the writing and the art though. In the middle of getting my degree in animation, so you know I’m good for the critique.

    Anyway, sorry it’s taken me two years to find this.

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