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ADV Films presents
Miyuki-chan in Wonderland (1995)

"I'd like to teach you a thing or two."
- Cheshire catgirl (Ai Orikasa)

Review By: Jeff Ulmer   
Published: May 07, 2002

Stars: Ai Orikasa, Hekiru Shiina, Kikuko Inoue, Mariko Kouda, Megumi Shinohara, Yuko Nagashima
Director: Tetsuro Aoki

Manufacturer: Crest National
MPAA Rating: Not Rated for (15+ for mature themes)
Run Time: 00h:30m:21s
Release Date: May 07, 2002
UPC: 702727020827
Genre: anime

Image Transfer
Audio Transfer
B+ CB+B+ C-

DVD Review

With the number of series out that have male characters oggling young girls in their ecchi fantasies, it is refreshing to find a show where the high heel is on the other foot, so to speak—but not quite a reversal of roles. The all-female anime production team, CLAMP (Apapa Mokona, Nanase Okawa, Mikku Nekoi and Satsuki Igarashi), creators of Angelic Layer, Card Captor Sakura and Magic Knight Rayearth, put a decidely feminine spin on Lewis Carroll's classics Alice in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass in this two-part OVA, Miyuki-chan in Wonderland (Fushigi no Kuni Miyuki-chan), presented in its original Japanese only. This is pretty much a fanservice title, with plenty of ecchi content, but aside from some nice artwork and beautiful women, there is little substance—not necessarily a bad thing.

"Those are knobs?" - Miyuki

Late for school, young Miyuki rushes out of the house with her piece of toast for breakfast, where a girl wearing a bunny suit breezes past on a skateboard, exclaiming that she too is late. Momentarily distracted, Miyuki doesn't notice the black hole that opens up in the sidewalk, into which both girls disappear. The bizarre events are just beginning. When she wakes up, Miyuki finds herself face to face with a very female talking door, which opens up the world of the wonderland, a place full of more strange, female things. From a pair of fighting twins, to a magic teacup, a sultry cheshire cat-girl and an S&M queen, Miyuki-chan has her hands full, and those she meets want a hand full of Miyuki-chan! As each of her acquaintances make their none too subtle advances, Miyuki manages to escape somehow, finding herself in even more compromising positions.

Part two sees our heroine vanishing through the looking glass into a world of reflections, where a titillating game of chess awaits. Once again, the sweet and innocent Miyuki-chan faces a world full of sensual, scantily-clad females all trying to seduce her.

It has been some time since I have read either of the original stories, but the key elements seem to be in place, with most of the familiar characters, though much content—and costuming—is excised. Miyuki-chan in Wonderland being what it is, all the principle characters are kinky lesbian types, decked in revealing costumes, and all making a play for the young girl, though anything beyond suggestive is cleverly avoided. At only a half hour in length, the two parts fly by pretty quickly, but do add a new slant to an old story, with oodles of ecchi-edged adventure awaiting the central character. The animation is good, with CLAMP's distinctive character designs, and the pace moves pretty quickly. Like the originals, the adventures get pretty confusing and dreamlike, and making sense is low on the agenda. The episodes are set to a repetitive soundtrack reminiscent of old video games, which will be found either amusing or annoying. This is a guilty pleasure title, so those expecting a concise reinterpretation of the originals can look elsewhere.

Rating for Style: B+
Rating for Substance: C


Image Transfer

Aspect Ratio1.33:1 - Full Frame
Original Aspect Ratioyes

Image Transfer Review: The image quality is very good overall. There is some minor rainbowing, which is not surprising given the fine linework in the characters' hair. Colors are nicely represented, covering the pastels and more saturated colors well, with minimal compression issues in large expanses of solid color. Black levels are fine, but there is a bit of aliasing and some interlace artifacts, although nothing substantial.

Image Transfer Grade: B+


Audio Transfer

 LanguageRemote Access
DS 2.0Japaneseno

Audio Transfer Review: Japanese audio is clean with no technical deficiencies noted. The stereo field is decently utilized, fairly center focused, with the odd bit of directionality. No complaints here.

The jacket lists an English audio track, which is a misprint, as a dub has never been available for this title.

Audio Transfer Grade: B+


Disc Extras

Full Motion menu with music
Scene Access with 12 cues and remote access
Subtitles/Captions in English with remote access
6 Other Trailer(s) featuring Kimagure Orange Road, Princess Nine, Original Dirty Pair, Sakura Diaries, Burn-Up Excess, Excel Saga
Weblink/DVD-ROM Material
Packaging: Amaray
Picture Disc
1 Disc
1-Sided disc(s)
Layers: single

Extra Extras:
  1. Miyuki-chan paper doll
Extras Review: On disc extras are limited to previews for New Kimagure Orange Road, Princess Nine, Original Dirty Pair, Sakura Diaries, Burn-Up Excess, and Excel Saga.

The disc also contains a PDF file with artwork for a Miyuki-chan paper doll and an assortment of outfits that can be printed out. A nice little bonus for those with DVD-ROM drives on thier computers.

Extras Grade: C-


Final Comments

A short, subtitle-only twist on the classic Lewis Carroll stories, Miyuki-chan in Wonderland is a bit of naughty adventure as the all female cast tries to have their way with our heroine. Mindless fun for those not offended by the suggestive sexuality.


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