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ADV Films presents
Nadia, The Secret of Blue Water #8: The Secret Cave (1989)

"I'm afraid there's some secret on this island."
- Ayerton (Jason Phelps/Koshi Tsujitani)

Review By: Mark Zimmer   
Published: April 22, 2002

Stars: Yoshino Takumori, Noriko Hidaka, Muko Mizutani, Kumiko Takizawa, Minoru Inaba, Motomu Kiyokawa, Akio Otsuka, Koshi Tsujitani
Other Stars: Meg Bauman, Nathan Parsons, Margaret Cassidy, Sarah Richardson, Ken Webster, David Joes, Ev Lunning Jr., Jason Phelps
Director: Hideaki Anno

Manufacturer: M.O.F.C.
MPAA Rating: Not Rated for (violence, nudity, suggested for 12+)
Run Time: 01h:41m:22s
Release Date: April 23, 2002
UPC: 702727017025
Genre: anime

Image Transfer
Audio Transfer
B+ B+A-B+ C-

DVD Review

The adventures of young inventor Jean and mysterious acrobat/princess Nadia (together with baby lion King) and little orphan Marie continue, as does the pursuit of nearly everyone for the Blue Water, the jewel Nadia wears as a pendant.

Our friends are still stranded on a deserted island with Grandis, Hanson and Sanson, as well as Ayerton, who returns from early episodes. Tempers flare as the close proximity of the characters begins to chafe. Ayerton falls in love with Grandis, while Jean and Nadia discover a network of caves both in the water and on the island. When Nadia and the Blue Water enter, she vanishes, leaving Jean behind as the island starts to come apart.

The first episode, King vs. King, is just light filler, featuring a race between two robot Kings. The discovery of the caves, as well as some further revelations about the gem and Nadia's background, help make the other three episodes more substantive, and the story finally begins to move forward after stalling for some time. By the last episode of this volume, there are some wild twists that come out of nowhere and provide a few surprises.

The relationship of Jean and Nadia continues to develop in some amusing and touching ways. Even though tenderness is at the forefront, there's also a realistic undercurrent of selfishness and fickleness. Little Marie proves her worth as well, with some moments that will be enjoyed by younger viewers who feel they're not taken seriously enough. There are some lengthy segments of nudity, but it's all pretty tasteful with no actual naughty bits visible.

Rating for Style: B+
Rating for Substance: B+


Image Transfer

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

Image Transfer Review: Again, there are some low quality inserts that were an issue with the prior volume. However, they're not as extensive nor as frequent. The inserts are not only poorly animated, but they also are blurry and look like fourth-generation dupes. There are also a couple occasions of considerable instability of the picture; objects and characters that are supposed to be still twitch on the screen. The balance of the program continues to look sharp and bright, however.

Image Transfer Grade: A-


Audio Transfer

 LanguageRemote Access
DS 2.0English, Japaneseyes

Audio Transfer Review: Both the English and Japanese tracks are presented in 2.0. The music and dialogue are quite clear and hiss-free. There is some surround activity in the island sequences, but it's fairly subtle.

Audio Transfer Grade: B+


Disc Extras

Animated menu with music
Scene Access with 16 cues and remote access
Subtitles/Captions in English with remote access
Packaging: Scanavo
1 Disc
1-Sided disc(s)
Layers: single

Extra Extras:
  1. Interview with voice actor Meg Bauman (Nadia)Previews of other ADV discs
  2. Preview of vol. 9Preview of Nadia vol. 9
  3. Previews for six other ADV discs
Extras Review: The extras are a bit improved here. The main attraction is an innovative little text interview with the English voice actor for Nadia, fourteen-year-old Meg Bauman. Nothing earthshaking, but it's good to learn a little about the voice actors, who are so often pretty anonymous. It would have been nicer to be a video interview, but text is better than nothing. A very brief preview of the next volume gives some hints of the next direction to the story, though it's packed with spoilers. Wrapping up the package are brief and generally cryptic previews of Soul Hunter, Princess Nine, Power Stone, Robotech, Dai-Guard and Orphen.

Extras Grade: C-


Final Comments

The filler finally comes to an end and the story hurtles forward at a breakneck pace. Things begin to move toward what promises to be an exciting conclusion.


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