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Score: 88%
Rating: 13+
Publisher: NIS America
Region: 1
Media: DVD/2
Running Time: 325 Mins.
Genre: Anime/Comedy/Drama
Audio: Dolby 2.0 Stereo (Japanese)
Subtitles: English


  • Toradora! Official Art Book
  • Clean Opening/ Ending

Toradora! is a great lesson in pre-judgment. When I originally popped the first disc in my player, I was pretty sure I was in for a long couple of hours. Although I review a decent bit of anime, I wouldn't call myself an avid fan. On top of that, I was immediately assaulted by overly cute images and bright colors. I was sure I wouldn't like it.

Toradora! is, as I soon found out, a really fun series. It's a little too "high school kids" for my tastes, but is still likeable and enjoyable comedy/ drama. The main plot centers on Ryuji and Taiga, two misunderstood teens with crushes on each other's best friends. Ryuji is a good kid with a love for cooking (and cleaning) who is mistrusted because of his eyes. Taiga is a feisty girl with a bit of a temper problem. Episodes center on different mini-plots, though they all play into the duo's attempts help each other out.

It is typical teen drama stuff, though Toradora! manages to take a step above the "typical" thanks to incredible character development and growth. If you ever want a great example for how a series can build up characters, this is it. At the start, both are unappealing clichés, another major "no" on my list. By the end of the first 13-episode arc, both are in a completely different place. I won't spoil anything, but both go in unexpected directions.

Both the voicework and animation are top notch. Everything is full of details, right down to the smallest of props. Every character has their own distinct way of moving, infusing their characters with even more personality. Toradora! is presented in the original Japanese with English subtitles. Text is easy to read and the script flows really well. I never had to stop to catch up and quickly found myself following what was going on without really thinking about it.

The big prize with the Premium Edition box set is the full-color, hardbound book. The book is broken up into episodes. In addition to plot recaps for every episode, each section also includes a few notes and artwork. The episode notes are particularly interesting; most point out little things I otherwise wouldn't have noticed. Finally, there's a set of interviews with the voice actors. Overall, it's a great bonus item.

Toradora! is a great all-around package and worth checking out if you're an anime fan, or at least a viewer who appreciates great character development.

-Starscream, GameVortex Communications
AKA Ricky Tucker

Anime Naruto: Uncut Box Set 12

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