Daphne in the Brilliant Blue Volume 6
The polar icecaps have melted, the world is a very different place and the new earth has recently celebrated its anniversary of the ascent from the depths of the ocean. With this ascent comes secrets, secrets and lies that have been told to the entire world and they are constantly being hidden by the Ocean Agency. Finally the story starts to really come into it’s own with Volume 6 for Daphne in the Brilliant Blue and our heroes, the girls from the Nereids Agency are one step closer to discovering what this secret is and the mystery that surrounds Maia’s dreams.
After Maia successfully landed the airship, even though she had next to no experience convinced the Ocean Agency into allowing her to take her exams again; however, Maia’s dreams have been so persistent that she’s starting to lose perspective. She manages to fail her Ocean Agency exams by deleting all of her answers instead of submitting them. She also manages to get Shizuka injured by her lack of attention and Rena ends up sacking her due to this huge error. As a result, Maia is homeless and jobless and is attacked on the street just to top it off. Fortunately her friend Millie and the mysterious grey haired man successfully attempt to rescue her from almost certain death.
The grey haired man is vital in keeping this story flowing and Maia speaking with him and this attack really is the turning point in this volume and keeps everything moving forward at record pace. With Maia’s memory returning to her at full speed, there are those who would rather her memory stays forgotten, as she is the only person who remembers the truth. As Maia remembers more the Ocean Agency become twitchy and arrest Maia and attempt to do a memory wipe, but not before the Nereids team come along to rescue her and take her to where she needs to go. Fortunately the team run into their old rivals who help them along the way.
It’s quite clear that Daphne in the Brilliant Blue is a series of two halves. The first three volumes, although entertaining, are clear fanservice with good humour but no real extended plotlines and using as many of the typical clichés and problems that we are used to seeing. From Volume 4 onwards, Daphne in the Brilliant Blue becomes an entirely different show; it uses extended plotlines with character development, interwoven plotlines and a twist that is amazing.
Upon reviewing the entire series it’s clear that from the very start the creators knew exactly where the series was going and although the first few volumes are somewhat droll it’s the clichés and the throwaway points that derive from these clichés that cause a lot of what happens in the final show to occur. The very fact that all of the lose points are tied up in the final episodes is impressive, what’s more impressive is that none of these knots feel forced and weak. Everything falls nicely into place and this “run of the mill” anime really manages to hit an emotional punch with the final episodes.
A fair amount of the final episodes are shot underwater, and throughout the entire series the background scenes have all been visually stunning, and even in the deepest, darkest parts of the sea the mountain ranges of the sea and the ocean are easily spotted apart and the various depths which could easily be poorly done are crafted amazingly. The character art may be a little lacklustre, with some of the characters almost feeling like they are identical.
The voice acting in itself is top notch in this volume, although some of the castings still feel off in comparison to the Japanese volume, and the “Big Brother” sequences are just as painful as always the emotion conveyed in the voices are clear.
The key thing to remember is that after making your way through the entire show, you want to know what happens. So regardless of the gratuitous nudity along the way, the frequent terrible “Big Brother” in the English dub, you want to know. A solid and engaging story, but let down by the fanservice and questionable English cast.
With next to no features throughout the entire show, we are then hit with two extra episodes that each run at 24 minutes a piece to keep the show flowing along for just a little longer.
Volume 6 of Daphne in the Brilliant Blue manages to capture the emotion of a lost memory, the elation of remembering it and then the utter horror of what these memories mean to Maia and the world. Daphne in the Brilliant Blue ends on a high leaving you wanting more.