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MeiKing Hentai Anime DVD Review

8 min read

A decent dose of simplistic little fantasy with a dash of sex and the castle.

What They Say:
Blame it on the sheep.

Cain Asbell was an unremarkable guy until one of his stray sheep led him into a cave with a trapped fairy named Elise. In a blink of an eye, Cain goes from pauper to Lord when Elise helps him rescue the Princess Charlotte.

There’s just one hitch. Cain has to make his land the most prosperous in the country within 5 years. Should he fail, he’ll lose everything and return to being another lowly shepherd. But if he manages to succeed, Cain will gain the Princess Charlotte’s hand in marriage!

Sound easy’ Not if everyone in your kingdom is out to take advantage of your young age. Between slavers and bandits it’s amazing that Cain is still alive. But being a Lord isn’t all bad – he has the right to choose any woman he wants to go to bed with him: Tsubaki, who doesn’t fully appreciate that her body has a will of its own; Tia, who will do anything for the man that saved her; and Chiffon, whose cold heart has yet to feel real passion…

The Review:
Audio:
The audio presentation for this release is pretty good with a pair of bilingual audio tracks that are both encoded at 448kbps. The mixes for the show itself is pretty unremarkable overall considering its age as it has a simple stereo design that’s essentially a full sounding center channel mix. The show doesn’t have a lot in the way of actual action and minimal music so it’s largely dialogue and moan driven and that all comes across clearly and without any problems. There’s not a lot of real variety or design to it so the mix captures things well enough while showing its age. We didn’t have any real issues during regular playback with dropouts or distortions but the mix in general just didn’t merit much notice.

Video:
Originally released in 2000, the transfer for this four part OVA is presented in its original full frame aspect ratio. MeiKing at times looks a few years old than that as its style is pretty flat in the color palette and the animation in general isn’t what we usually see, even for hentai. There are some bright colors, but the lack a real vibrancy that’s seen in most hentai at the time of its release.The transfer looks decent throughout, with no cross coloration and some aliasing being the only real issue. The character designs at times are extremely basic, which gives mid and long range shots a slightly blocky look to their faces, but that’s not really the transfer but the source materials.

Packaging:
The packaging for this release goes for the single character look with a standard keepcase and the artwork, that of Charlotte on the front in a state of mild undress, looks pretty clean and new, certainly belying its actual age and the look of the show itself. The cover has only a few colors to it overall but it’s bold and striking, certainly very eye-catching. The logo is kept simple and the Critical Mass logo along the bottom gives it a nice bit of binding to tie it all together. The back cover uses some good in show artwork with the drapes providing the edge artwork here to draw in some color and give it a nice atmospheric feeling. We get some shots from the show that are mostly focused on Charlotte, which is amusing as she’s mostly a bookend character, and a decent look at the shows plot. Technical details are clearly listed along the bottom and the special features get their due. No show related inserts are included nor is there a reversible cover.

Menu:
The main menu features a nice piece of artwork of the Princess Charlotte while music from the show plays along. Selections are pretty minimal since there’s not much to the disc beyond the show itself. Access times are good but there’s a problem in keeping settings. After setting languages, I started the first episode and it went back to just English language and no subtitles. The selections do retain between episodes though. Oddly enough, at the end of episode three, it threw me back to the main menu.

Extras:
There’s a 40 second image gallery here that’s pretty much just a few stills from the show playing to music as the images change across the screen.

Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
Originally released by Critical Mass Video back in 2002, MeiKing is part of the Vanilla Series collection of hentai releases that came out over the years and hasn’t seen a real re-release in all that time, which is a surprise since a lot of hentai does get re-released as time goes on. The show is one that, as mentioned in the video section of the review, feels more at home in the early 90’s than in 2000 when it was originally released as a four part OVA in Japan, largely because of its designs and the way the hentai animation studios were so quickly embracing the digital animation side, something that was really hit or miss depending on the studio in question and how much effort was put in. This one, traditionally animated, has a certain look and feel to it that’s nostalgic, but it takes you back further than its actual origins is all.

MeiKing as a bit of an odd show. Few hentai series get beyond one episode, never mind getting to four like this one did. All that I can figure is that there must be a game behind it, because the first episode feels very much like a PC game. The show centers around a young man named Cain. Cain has lived the life of a shepherd for many years, but his life changed dramatically when he followed his sheep into a cave and ended up freeing a fairy named Elise who had been imprisoned in there. To reward Cain, she instructs him to go help a girl that’s been captured and left out in the woods. As it turns out, the girl is actually the princess, and Cain finds himself now a Lord of Norland. His job, should he truly hope to marry the beautiful young blonde princess someday, is to become the best ruler of the land.

SimKing.

That’s how the first episode feels, which is kind of all over the place in some respects. While we do get the setup and all that, we also see the Princess playing the role of a Magical Girl during a fight sequence and we get the usual Kingdom Building routine. Add in a few sex scenes, and it’s a strange mix.

The opening episode also sets the stage for just what kind of Lord that Cain will be. While we see him briefly have an encounter with the Princess, she’s not supposed to go near him for a few years. So what’s a young lad to do’ Well, apparently not his friendly elf who seems more aloof around people than anything else. She’s cute, but she looks to be a challenge. What ends up floating his boat turns out to be a warrior woman named Tsubaki whom he accidentally defeats while she’s roughing up his new citizens. With this surprise defeat, she ends up taking over his meager army and training them.

And on the side, he gets to train her in the ways of wuuuv.

But fear not, for there are indeed more women for him to pursue, and most end up arriving in a rather decent way as the story begins to kick in with the second episode. A piece of land in Norland is being desired by the Lord of Tedmond, and the two go back and forth in letters over it. Eventually it comes to battle before the King, but even that doesn’t work out right, causing war to erupt between the two Lords. This actually causes the show to take place over a few years, but don’t expect the characters to really age. Throughout this time, Cain ends up getting things going with a variety of women, including Tsubaki again. The elf eventually falls under his sway, a bandit leader and a former slave just for starters.

The episodes play out pretty well, with the story and the sex balancing between what’s the primary force of the show. Each manages to serve each other well, instead of something like a simple paper thin plot to play out a couple of situations. The character designs are interesting, but again feel like they have a basis in a computer game as they’re reminiscent of some RPG styles. The facial designs, the whisper thin waists and their general size aren’t what we see from most hentai coming out these days.

In Summary:
While it initially left me a little uninterested, the remaining three episodes managed to bring out an interesting story and hot naked elf sex. There, I said it. Hot. Naked. Elf. Sex. That alone will get people to check it out. Fantasy era hentai is still pretty rare even a decade later unfortunately, making this one worth checking out just from that perspective alone..While I remembered parts of it once the show started playing, I enjoyed going back to it overall even if it does play by standard rules of how this kind of show goes with its gaming feel to the structure of it. The series is one that tells a complete story, has a variety of characters and situations and doesn’t play nice at times with what happens to some of the women, but it’s almost a quaint show in a way.

Features:
Japanese 2.0 Language, English 2.0 Language, English Subtitles, Art Gallery

Content Grade: B-
Audio Grade: B+
Video Grade: C+
Packaging Grade: B+
Menu Grade: C+
Extras Grade: C+

Released By: Critical Mass Video
Release Date: July 10th, 2012
MSRP: $14.99
Running Time: 120 Minutes
Video Encoding: 480i/p MPEG-2
Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1

Review Equipment:
Sony KDS-R70XBR2 70″ LCoS 1080P HDTV, Sony PlayStation3 Blu-ray player via HDMI set to 1080p, Onkyo TX-SR605 Receiver and Panasonic SB-TP20S Multi-Channel Speaker System With 100-Watt Subwoofer.

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