Search - Nadia, Secret of Blue Water - The Adventure Begins (Vol. 1) on DVD


Nadia, Secret of Blue Water - The Adventure Begins (Vol. 1)
Nadia Secret of Blue Water - The Adventure Begins
Vol. 1
Actors: Noriko Hidaka, Carl Domaski, Judson L. Jones, Craig Kanne, Talbot McKitt
Genres: Action & Adventure, Drama, Kids & Family, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Television, Anime & Manga, Animation
UR     2001     1hr 40min

The World's Fair, Paris, 1889: a young inventor crosses paths with an enigmatic girl and her pet lion. Suddenly they find themselves pursued by a villainous trio intent upon stealing the magical Blue Water. Thus begins an ...  more »

     
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Movie Details

Actors: Noriko Hidaka, Carl Domaski, Judson L. Jones, Craig Kanne, Talbot McKitt
Creator: Akio Satsukawa
Genres: Action & Adventure, Drama, Kids & Family, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Television, Anime & Manga, Animation
Sub-Genres: Action & Adventure, Love & Romance, 10-12 Years, Family Films, Animation, Television, Anime & Manga, Animation
Studio: Adv Films
Format: DVD - Color - Animated
DVD Release Date: 06/19/2001
Release Year: 2001
Run Time: 1hr 40min
Screens: Color
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 0
MPAA Rating: Unrated
Languages: English, Japanese
Subtitles: English

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Movie Reviews

Neglected Nadia--and a Harbinger of Things to Come
Michael Huang | Los Angeles, CA USA | 07/30/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)

"This neglected series, which I saw in its entirety on fansubs, might very well be the best TV series adventure drama for younger audiences produced in anime--but I'm not so familiar with anime aimed at younger audiences, so that's not something I say with total confidence. There are still numerous flaws in the storytelling, especially in the middle episodes that were made after Director Hideaki Anno handed over production to his assitant Shinji Higuchi and the animation was farmed out to cheaper, overseas animation studios. (I guess he came back for the final episodes, which are pure Anno indeed.) On the whole, "Nadia: The Secret of Blue Water" is an age-appropriate series that doesn't fail to include compelling characters, a twisting, consistently interesting plot, and a grand finale that's logical and actually worthy of everything that came before it. Anno didn't even manage to pull something like that in "Evangelion," no matter what the greater strengths of that later show were.What's actually rather amazing in seeing this series is how many parallels the storyline and even the characters of Nadia, Captain Nemo, Electra, and the Neo-Atlantean organization were carried over into "Evangelion." Suffice to say that in the second tape, the middle episodes before the infamous "Island" sequence, and in the final five episodes--the echoes are undeniable. (Biblical references abound, for example.) Situations, lines, and themes turn out to be similar, and occasionally they even rival the brutality that "Evangelion" portrayed so vividly--though of course, this show was made for children and thus Anno had to pull his punches. Reportedly, he was unhappy about this fact; I suppose "Evangelion" made up for that! Even the infamous close-up montages of still objects that would be a hallmark of Anno's later work shows up from time to time in this show.The colors are bright and sharp, if a bit 80s-ish and slightly dated by today's anime standards. The character design is also much more "round" and "cartoonish," with the eerie exception of Nadia herself--a dead ringer for Shinji, if I ever saw one. (Of course both "Eva" and "Nadia" shared the same character designer, so it's no surprise.) Special note must be made about the delightfully Jules Vernes-ish mechanical devices--the Gratan, for example, or the intricately designed Nautilus, which has throwbacks to the spaceships in Anno's debut OAV, "Gunbuster." As a previous reviewer has noted, the influence of Miyazaki, especially "Laputa: Castle in the Sky," is significant, though they're not specifically the flying machines that Miyazaki has a special affection for. The alternate late 19th Century portrayed in this series is quite charming and intricate, in a Jules Verne-ish way again.What I liked about this show is that while the above-mentioned brutality and plot twists are definitely present, the strong sense of faith and vitality is never lost in the characters--especially in Jean, who never loses hope, even when the moody, introspective Nadia does. Jean's optimism is believable, not contrived, and it is his devotion and energy that drives this show, even as many of the characters around him start to fall apart in remarkably similar ways that the "Eva" characters did. I think this ultimately was the secret of this anime's true success in Japan and in the early US anime fan community, besides the humor and impressively detailed mechanical devices and plot twists. I look forward to completing this series on DVD, hopefully with the valuable, revealing, and necessary omake/extra bits released as well."
A flawed, but very, very good anime series
Jon J. Marx | Seattle, WA | 06/19/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)

"I love the Beatles White Album, but I only love about half the songs on it. Beatles manager George Martin always said he thought it should have been done as a single album, taking the best from both records, and it would be the best rock album ever. This is basically how I feel about "Nadia." Director Hideaki Anno chose to make the series 39 episodes long rather than the usual 26; I feel that if he condensed the series to 26 episodes long, he would have a killer show on his hands.Nadia was Anno's first series, and essentially spins halfway between his work under anime legend Hiyao Miyazake (Princess Mononoke, Nausicaa) and his own landmark series Neon Genesis: Evangelion. The best elements of Nadia feature remnants of Miyazaki's spellbinding magical qualities, and Evangelion's scorching and unsettling vision of looming apocalypse. Our heroine Nadia finds herself exploring a vast and strange lost underwater kingdom, while coming to terms with her own tortured family life and the frightening proto-Nazi organization that her Atlantean kingdom has turned into. Anno doesn't fail to dazzle us with a glimpse at a haunting and magical world, but he pulls no punches either.Tragically, both of these aspects are rather damaged by Anno's handling of comedy in the series. The mixing of comedy and serious material within Nadia is nothing extraordinary; the Japanese have a knack for handling this brilliantly (see Cowboy Bebop, Slayers: Try, and even the incredible Irresponsible Captain Tylor). Anno himself handles this masterfully - albeit with a vicious streak - in Evangelion, where he lures the viewers in with lighter-hearted fare before dumping unspeakable horror on them. But in Nadia, there is simply too much comic relief; the gag characters don't know when to shut up. When the Hitleresque Gargoyle is nearly destroying Nadia with a horrific battalion of organic spaceships, silly jokes are still being cracked. It just spoils the purity of the moment.Likewise, the comic sequences stretch on too long at times. Nadia and Jean's stay on the island, for example, lasts at least six or seven episodes, with most of the plot taken up with Jean's comic swipes at Nadia's obsessive vegetarianism. By the time they get off, you nearly forget that the plot that landed them there.This is not to say this a bad series by any means; it's simply a warning. Don't expect THE most incredible series ever; truth told, it is probably not as solid a show as Anno's Evangelion is. But it remains his close second, and one of the best anime series in recent memory. If you've seen Evangelion, Nadia has some of the same feel, but in much gentler way... Nadia takes you by the hand where Evangelion stomps on your face with a metal boot.So definitely check out Nadia. You'll get the bonus of seeing where Disney stole their newest movie from, too..."
Industrial (and Anime) Revolution
Aaron C McKee | Minneapolis | 05/17/2000
(4 out of 5 stars)

"Studio Gainax's Hideaki Anno directed this NHK produced tv series which aired in the early nineties. This enigmatic and thoroughly entertaining series is the whimsical dexter to Evangelion's sinister. Ironically, both works feature biblical icons and cautionary moral tales. This story is loosely based on Jules Vernes 20,000 leagues under the sea, but features a cast of characters mirroring a greek tragedy. The first few episodes are action packed, and set this powerful story in motion. I believe that the properly subtitled complete version will place this work with Nausicaa of the Valley of Wind, Honneamis and Evangelion. I hope to see a DVD collector's version."
Neglected Nadia--and a Harbinger of Things to Come
Michael Huang | Los Angeles, CA USA | 07/30/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)

"This series, which I saw in its entirety on fansubs, might very well be the best TV series adventure drama for younger audiences produced in anime--but I'm not so familiar with anime aimed at younger audiences, so that's not something I say with total confidence. There are still numerous flaws in the storytelling, especially in the middle episodes that were made after Director Anno Hideaki handed over production to his assitant, but on the whole, "Nadia: The Secret of Blue Water" is an age-appropriate series that doesn't fail to include compelling characters, a twisting, consistently interesting plot, and a grand finale that's logical and actually worthy of everything that came before it. Anno didn't even manage to pull something like that in "Evangelion," no matter what the greater strengths of that later show were.What's actually rather amazing in seeing this series is how many parallels the storyline and even the characters of Nadia, Captain Nemo, Electra, and the Neo-Atlantean organization were carried over into "Evangelion." Suffice to say that in the second tape, the middle episodes before the infamous "Island" sequence, and in the final five episodes--the echoes are undeniable. (Biblical references abound, for example.) Situations, lines, and themes turn out to be similar, and occasionally they even rival the brutality that "Evangelion" portrayed so vividly--though of course, this show was made for children and thus Anno had to pull his punches. Reportedly, he was unhappy about this fact; I suppose "Evangelion" made up for that!The colors are bright and sharp, if a bit 80s-ish and slightly dated by today's anime standards. The character design is also much more "round" and "cartoonish," with the eerie exception of Nadia herself--a dead ringer for Shinji, if I ever saw one. (Of course both "Eva" and "Nadia" shared the same character designer, so it's no surprise.) What I liked about this show is that while the above-mentioned brutality and plot twists are definitely present, the strong sense of faith and vitality is never lost in the characters--especially in Jean, who never loses hope, even when the moody, introspective Nadia does. Jean's optimism is believable, not contrived, and it is his devotion and energy that drives this show, even as many of the characters around him start to fall apart in remarkably similar ways that the "Eva" characters did. I think this ultimately was the secret of this anime's true success in Japan and in the early US anime fan community, besides the humor and impressively detailed mechanical devices and plot twists. I look forward to completing this series on DVD, hopefully with the valuable, revealing, and necessary omake/extra bits released as well."