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"Mermaid Forest: Quest For Death" Emo On Immortality

There is a legend that those who eat the flesh of a mermaid will gain everlasting life. Turns out the legend is only one-third true: you’ve got just as good a chance as dying or turning into a monster. Yuta, a man from centuries past, and a fifteen year old girl named Mana have both eaten the flesh and become immortal—a curse that neither of them wants. Can they find both a mermaid and a way to reverse this way out of the AARP?

Yeah, I’m not so hungry anymore.

I’ll tell ya right now—I’ve always liked mermaid stuff. I can remember watching The Little Mermaid in elementary school and trying to play as the mermaid chick in the Goemon game on the Nintendo 64. Maybe it’s the whole “permanently topless” thing. I don’t actually like fish that much though.

How’s the scene go, from Army Of Darkness?
Witch: You once loved me…
Ash: Honey, you got ugly real fast.

I jumped at the chance to review “Mermaid ________”. Didn’t care what that second word was. “Mermaid Rangers”? Heck yes, there’s a mermaid Zord thing in next year’s Power Rangers Mystic Force, and my Ranger namesake (the Ranger that, ironically, shared my first name, and had my second name as his last name) hooked up with a mermaid once. “Mermaid Tax Filing”? Sure, I’ll watch ‘em file taxes. Does Aquaman even have an IRS?

Yeah, then I saw that they were advertising it as “From Rumiko Takahashi, the creator of InuYasha!

Sigh.

I’ve pretty much seen every episode of Inuyasha they’ve aired on Adult Swim Action. Not out of interest, but I’ve left it on in the background as I surf the web. The show is bad. Characters never advance, plot rarely advances, humor is unfunny, and I don’t care for medieval stuff. It’s actually an enjoyable show when it’s set in the modern days, but otherwise it’s very forgettable.

In modern day Japan (or at least I think it’s modern day, there’s trucks and stuff, but it’s all set in the countryside), Yuta wanders the coastline looking for mermaids. His constant running around asking about mermaids brings up even more questions than my dad had when, in Shenmue, I was looking for sailors a lot.

He ends up asking the wrong elderly old ladies about mermaids and is killed on the spot. Old ladies are like cats I guess. You can easily take one out by itself, but when they group together, run.

So, with our main hero dead, we learn about the series’ other main cast member. Mana’s been raised by these old ladies since she was five. Her legs have been bound, and she’s been bedridden for a whole decade, for no apparent reason.

But Yuta wants answers. He apparently returns from the dead and raids the house, because he knows that the ladies know about mermaids. He wants information and takes Mana as a hostage. A quick chase scene later, and all is revealed. These old ladies are mermaids (not the hot kind), and have slowly been feeding Mana mermaid flesh in a convoluted scheme to keep their youth. With the merhags slaughtered, these two embark on a quest to find nice mermaids who can tell them how they can lose their immortality and die like normal people down the road.

The second and third episode recap an event from Yuta’s long-lost past. If you’re anything like me, you’re not going to care.

“Say ‘hi’ to the nice people, Gabbo!”

Slow? Yes.
Character you don’t like? Mana’s not that fun to hang with.
Angst? Hell, yes.

And so we have a show that is not fun to watch.

The DVD’s extra features do nothing to alleviate the problem: it’s a Geneon disc. Production Art Gallery, meet your friend Geneon Previews. That’s how you make an incredibly weak show look even paler alongside ADV.

Unless you’re a major Rumiko fan or like the incredibly boring parts of Inuyasha, run away from this series.

Episodes included in this disc
Episode 1: “Mermaid Does Not Smile”
Episode 2: “Village Of The Fighting Fish Part 1″
Episode 3: “Village Of The Fighting Fish Part 2″

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