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Nekomonogatari White – Review (DVD/Blu-Ray Combo)

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The interesting thing about cats is that they always land on their feet. I suppose heights don’t really bother them that much. It’s not like they can easily die of head trauma due to falling.

Even better is that they’re also thought to have nine lives so if one of those times the cat doesn’t live up to its reputation and unfortunately is killed, at least they have another eight to enjoy before true demise.

That’s great…when the cat is a simple family pet and not a supernatural presence brought about by extreme stress. To be completely honest; I’m more of a fan of dogs.

Cats aren’t really my thing and I think I have an idea why: They’re conniving, they’re sneaky and they’re elusive. They also, according to ‘Nekomonogatari White’, make for some pretty dangerous apparitions.

Come on. It‘s time to wake from this nightmare. Tsubasa Hanekawa’s curse has just morphed itself into a tiger. A great white beast, that seems to only bring misfortune to Tsubasa in its wake. It’s first victim? Her house. Homeless and with Araragi away on business, Tsubasa’s forced to fend against this supernatural creature on her own.  However she’s not as alone as she thinks. Her love rival Hitagi Senjogahara is offering aid and Black Hanekawa is still as protective as ever but to defeat this new beast, the answer lies in a secret she’s been hiding. – Hanabee

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Containing the first five episodes of what was previously called ‘Monogatari Series: Season Second’, ‘Nekomonogatari White’ lets audiences in on the story of Miss Tsubasa Hanekawas never ending feline problem. Before it was just her nightly transformation that called for those around her to panic but now, after coming into contact with a burning white tiger, she realizes that it’s her transformation that may just be able to sort out this situation once and for all.

After watching this I now realize that I absolutely love the ‘Monogatari’ series in short bursts. Still featuring the same unnecessary dialogue pieces and misplaced fanservice scenes, ‘Nekomonogatari White’ told a very real and very tragic story about emotional abuse in a broken household. Having watched the previous seasons, in my opinion, is a must before tackling ‘Nekomonogatari White’.

It just makes it so much better when you understand exactly what it is the characters are referencing especially because the ‘Monogatari’ series does a good job at NOT treating the audience like idiots and spelling it all out for us. We live in quite a harsh world so being confronted by things like abuse and mistreatment isn’t exactly new to use nor is it nearly as shocking as it should be.

‘Nekomonogatari White’ does a brilliant job at making you, the watcher, feel true pity on this poor girl living a life disconnected from true family and true love. Unfortunately, as mentioned, you’ll have to deal with a lot of silly comments made by somewhat unlikable characters BUT if you can look beyond that and try your best to understand what it is they’re saying in the more gravitas-filled moments, you’ll be able to fully appreciate the lesson they’re trying to have you learn.

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Like the rest of the ‘Monogatari’ Anime series, ‘White’ simply looks brilliant. Shaft, the animation studio, has once again gone at this series with all guns blazing and firing on all pistons, and it definitely shows. The animation quality is at the top of it’s game and beats so many of the other series’ floating around right now, even the more recent ones which boast great animation.

This has been a constant for the series and, over the years, it has only ever grown to look better and better. ‘White’ did something brilliant in that it utilized bold and full colours to instil certain emotions in the audience. By this I mean that certain scenes were populated by different shades of the same colour and it worked perfectly to set the tone of the situation before even a lick of dialogue could be spoken.

The series has always done this but, for some reason, I noticed it more in ‘Nekomonogatari White’ than any other. Though I’m sure some of you out there will tell me I’m wrong. There were even times where an entire scene’s colours were inverted so as to drive home a critical point. Once again, I found this to be very much effective in ways that other Animes just can’t seem to wrap their heads around.

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For the soundtrack, the usually ‘Monogatari’ tracks return but that’s not a bad thing because they’re just as likable and well-placed as they have always been and, let’s be honest, it wouldn’t be a ‘Monogatari’ series without them. Each of the tracks are composed wonderfully and contemporarily so the sounds you’ll hear throughout aren’t much of what you’ve heard before.

Put them all together and you’ve got yourself a varied list of ‘chill out’ tracks alongside some scene setting music and a whole bunch of exciting up beat tunes. It’s the perfect mix of high and low.All the respective Japanese voice actors and actresses make a return for their characters and, once again, perform admirably. There is no actual English dub of the series so this particular Hanabee release comes just with the original Japanese dub track. Luckily for audiences, those voice performers know exactly what they’re doing and they do it to such a high level. ‘Nekomonogatari White’, without a doubt, has mastered audio and visual.

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If you’ve read my review for ‘Bakemonogatari’ (Click Here to read) than you’d know that I have somewhat of a ‘love/hate’ relationship with ‘Monogatari’ but I feel as though ‘Nekomonogatari White’ pushed me to a point where I would now consider the series to be one of my favorites.

It still contains many cliche Anime tropes that I utterly despise but it also happens to feature an interesting story that keeps you engaged, some of the greatest animation I’ve seen in quite some time and one hell of a rocking soundtrack. ‘Nekomonogatari White’ told a tragic and heated story of a girl subjected to mental brutality and yet it somehow left me with a smile on my face. I hope it’ll have that effect on you too.

Jump into the crazy world of ‘Nekomonogatari White’ by purchasing it at Hanabee’s official online store: Click Here

Grade: B+

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1 comment on “Nekomonogatari White – Review (DVD/Blu-Ray Combo)

  1. Pingback: Nisemonogatari – The Complete Series Review (Blu-Ray) | SnapThirty

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