Stephanie | Indiana, USA | 01/24/2010
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I'm not going to comment on price since I rent anime these days. Buying just gets too expensive. That being said...
I noticed that the editorial review of Kaze no Stigma is particularly scathing, and unnecessary in my opinion. Ayano and Kazuma's personalities fit their magic attributes quite nicely. She is far from being a Mary Sue, and his sarcasm is a large part of the humor in this series. I was wary of the "reluctant allies" aspect from the very beginning, and was worried that the characters, as well as the story would be too stereotypical. Upon Ayano's introduction, I had resigned myself to watching her being too headstrong for her own good. Concerning Kazuma, I thought he would be a jerk through the whole series, and to be honest, my first thought was "Oh great, he's going to be the Inuyasha type." To my delight, I was wrong.
The character interactions are really enjoyable. The story IS interesting, and not at all predictable, and not only that, it progresses nicely. The story starts out with the family rivalry theme, but doesn't dwell on it for long. It's only part of the story long enough to gain insight into Kazuma's past, and facilitate his first contact with Ayano. After dispatching with that aspect of the storyline (for the most part), the following episodes help progress the character relationships.
Romance fans will be thrilled that Kaze no Stigma actually has a fairly tangible romance between the main characters. It's not lovey dovey, but it's definitely an intended part of the story. The ending is very nicely wrapped up also. Some would probably say otherwise because the villain clearly has intentions of returning. However, I am certain Kaze no Stigma would have had a second season had the creator not passed away, so that argument is neither here nor there.
As far as the dub goes, Funimation does it again. The voice acting is fantastic as usual, although Ren's voice (Josh Grelle) is a little whiny sounding until you get used to it. Just wait for the character himself to show his maturity and it isn't so bad afterwards. There are special features at the end of the dvds with the Japanese voice actresses that are definitely worth watching as they are just adorable.
A Great Action Mystical Anime Series Funimation Is Releasing
Rich | CA | 06/18/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I've been watching this action packed series for a few months online and am greatly enjoyed that Funimation is finally releasing this series for us in America in two part packages. If you've see the series X/1999 or Shana here's another wonderful anime for your home. The series follows mostly on three characters you have Ayano Kannagi the heiress to the Kannagi clan a family of mystical warriors who control the element of fire to a powerful degree and are also the holders of a mystical weapon that allows the heir or heiress to elevate their power of fire, Kazuma Yagami Ayano's cousin and who was once also part of the Kannagi clan but because his elemental powers were not fire he was considered weak and after loosing the clan title match against Ayano was banished from the clan but it's later found out that he's a powerful wind user and has come back to Japan to find closure with his estranged former clan, and finally Ren Kannagi Kazuma's younger brother and Ayano's cousin who like Ayano is a fire user but has the potential to become much more powerful than even he realizes. The series has a nice mixture of action, drama, romance, and comedy(Though episode 12 will definitely be a real tear maker when you watch it) that makes watching the series from start to finish addictive and entertaining. While I've only heard it subbed which the voice cast are great in their roles I've found small clips of the English dubbed cast and they were pretty good too so if you like anime series like D-Gray man, Shana, X/1999, or Full Metal Alchemist here's another series for you home to get once it's out..."
Decent, but far too expensive
Peter Parker | Earth | 08/17/2009
(3 out of 5 stars)
"KnS will entertain most shonen fans, but doesn't rise above average TV anime. If teen sci-fi/fantasy action series aren't your type of show, then you will be very disappointed. In either case, the price is far higher than it should be for this series. Compared to KnS, Shana (Shakugan no Shana), is a masterpiece, and although Shana is one of my favorite shonen series and very entertaining, I don't rank it that high in terms of artistic achievement. Any number of series, both licensed and not, are better than KnS. You can buy the entire series box set of Shana for $50 retail, or $40 easily at discount. Familiar of Zero is also far better (as long as you never, ever turn on the English dub), again available in one box set for a reasonable price. Fate/Stay Night can be had for $40, and is again far better.
The full list of shows that are higher quality and less expensive to buy would be long, but Shana and Zero compare most closely to the characters and plot of KnS. Other flavors of shonen, such as Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha, compare similarly, being a much better show for a much lower cost.
I don't dislike Kaze no Stigma, as I am a fan of such shows. Where someone else would feel it was a waste of time, I would think the same about Paradise Kiss or other highly-rated shows in genres that simply don't appeal to me (romantic drama). If you like Shana and Zero, you'll probably enjoy KnS for what it is. Just don't pay more for it than either of those shows if you can wait for the inevitable drastic price cuts. $100.00 is ridiculous, frankly, and is about what you would have paid for individual volumes with nice art, extras and inserts if the series had been released three years ago in the good anime economy. KnS should be selling for $39.95 for a complete box set. That would be a fair asking price considering its rank in the shonen catalog of anime."
A gentle breeze...
Michael Abele | Seattle, WA | 07/16/2009
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This series is very good so far. A little expensive ($49.99 at release) for only 12 episodes however. Only fear I have of this series is that there is no real constant antagonist, a trait most Gonzo anime series' seem to share."