A fun little magical girl show that has way too many girls literally pissing their panties.
What They Say:
Sadness be gone! Though depressed people are scattered across the world, there are those from a parallel world who are here to help. Known as Juden-chan, these busty ladies use their special powers to charge up the mentally dejected and earn a living in the process. While Aresta and Plug are performing their Judan-chan duties, they discover a boy named Sento. Unlike most humans, Sento can actually see them!
The audio presentation for this release brings us the original Japanese language track only, which is in stereo and encoded at 384kbps. The show has a decent mix of action and dialogue to it so the forward soundstage mix works well overall. Dialogue is generally center channel placed but it has some good full moments to it and minor directionality during some of the action sequences. The show overall is a fairly standard stereo presentation so it hits all the expected notes and comes across in a clean and clear way, especially since it does boost up the encoding a little bit instead of the usual 192kbps level. The opening and closing sequences make out the best, but there are some other pretty good moments throughout that boosts it all up a bit more than usual. We didn’t have any issues with dropouts or distortions during regular playback.
Originally airing in 2009, the transfer for this TV series is presented in its original aspect ratio of 1.78:1 and enhanced for anamorphic playback. The twelve episodes are spread across three discs with four per disc, giving it some decent space to work with. Animated by studio Hibari, the series is one that has a decent look to it, though you can tell it’s a bit of a budget show overall as the details are kept simple. The encoding here is pretty decent overall as it’s kept to an bit rate of around eight for the most part, but it’s also dealing with the source materials themselves. Colors are generally good and solid, but there are some visible gradients in darker scenes, especially in the city, and there’s some line noise in a few scenes here and there, though nothing that’s really distracting or problematic. Overall, the show looks good and there are some high quality scenes that definitely make out all the better for it.
The packaging for this release is straightforward as we get a standard sized DVD keepcase that has all three discs held against the interior walls. The front cover is a bright and colorful piece that shows off Plug and Arrestia in their work uniforms as they’re over part of the city in the suburban area and with their giant plugs in hand. There’s a lightness to it that works really well and it has a positive energy about it that I definitely like. The back cover plays up the fanservice a bit more with various shots of the girls in swimsuits and other costumes that works pretty well for it. The premise is covered in a simple but effective form and the technical grid brings all the information out clearly so you know what’s involved here with languages and formats. There’s no show related inserts included nor is there a reversible cover, which isn’t a problem since this is a pretty good budget release overall.
The menu design for this release works in a good way as we get three static menus for each of the discs that shows off the character artwork. The first one has an expanded view of the cover artwork with more of the cityscape visible, and the character artwork is nice and vibrant. The other discs do more close-up artwork of the characters and more vibrant background colors that gives it some good pop. The menu navigation is the same across the release as it’s basically just top level language selection and a submenu for scene selection. Everything is quick and easy to navigate here and it definitely sets the mood well for the show.
Based on the manga by Bow Ditama which ran for ten volumes between 2006 and 2013, Juden-chan is a twelve episode TV series that aired in 2009. Ditama’s one of those manga creators that definitely makes me smile because he’s cut his teeth in the hentai world but has some good mainstream successes as well, such as Mahoromatic and the currently ongoing Kiss x sis. I had no idea what to expect with this series going into it, but it’s one that’s fairly fun overall and outside of one particular quirk, it’s one that I rather liked and enjoyed because of its simplicity and fun. It’s not high concept or deep and doesn’t try to be more than it is. And that kind of simplicity just makes it enjoyable to watch.
The series introduces us to the normal world as the basis for everything, so it’s easily accessible there. Where it gets creative is that we also get to see a parallel world where people there are involved in helping people in our world deal with their problems. It’s here at the Life Core that we’re introduced to one class of people known as charger girls, whose job is to come to our world and provide energy to people that are depressed or dealing with problems. Similar to the power readers in Dragon Ball Z, the girls patrol their areas of the Earth and find people with low energy levels. When they find them, they pull energy from the powerlines through large special dimensional plugs that they push into people, thereby bringing them back to a good level so they can go forward with their lives and paths.
The charger girls, and others that come across from the Life Core, wear special clothes that allow them to operate here stealthily and invisible, so they can flit about and do their job and fill their quotas. It’s through this that we’re introduced to one girl named Plug, who isn’t the best at being a charger girl in the traditional sense but has some up with some creative and more personal ways of achieving her goals. But she’s just not able to do it to the levels that others do, which causes her no end of grief and grief for those that have to get involved with her. You can see the positives of what Plug is doing, but you can also see why it’s not easy for her to be a front line player in the traditional sense.
Where her life takes an unusual turn though is while off trying to help someone, she ends up discovering a college student named Sento that can see her. It’s unheard of for it to happen and it’s fun seeing the panic it sends into Plug since not only can he see her, he can actually touch her as well. And she can end up touching anything that he’s holding, so she can sit on the bed with him, eat watermelon or any number of other things. Plug ends up getting into a pretty decent working relationship with Sento as she helps out with his younger sister at first and one of his childhood friends, but I liked that until the end they didn’t really push a romantic relationship between them, though there’s obviously feelings from her part towards him and he’s certainly interested in her in a basic sense considering what she represents.
Complicating things in a good way is that as it goes on, Plug gets assigned a high level charger girl partner in Arrestia, one of the better players in the game. Aresta is naturally all business and the opposite of Plug. When she discovers what Sento is, the hard way with a baseball bat to the head, she ends up falling for him pretty hard and kind of really likes the abuse she takes from him. Not that he’s doing it to her in a way as it’s done right for the scenes as she finds herself drawn to him. Aresta really comes across well throughout the show once she realizes she has feelings for Sento and working that throughout the background of the series as the stakes rise and they have to work together against the “big bad” that takes up the final arc. But just watching these two as time goes on brought a smile to my face as they had a “right couple” kind of feeling about them.
The show plays to a lot of simple magical girl comedy as it goes on with them helping people, Sento learning about it to some degree, and mostly the girls dominating things. Sento’s role is minor in a lot of ways as the show focuses mostly on Plug and Aresta and it has a lot of fun with it since they’re not competing for Sento’s attention. They run through familiar themes of course, made fun by them being unable to interact with the world from time to time, and it works well in making for an enjoyable experience. The show also provides for a magical girl show within the show through the TV series that Plug likes to watch on Earth, though that one goes in a very smutty direction. Juden-chan definitely plays to the sexuality side pretty well throughout, especially with Aresta getting all hot and bothered when she thinks about Sento, but it has plenty of other shots and angles with the tight uniforms and all the expected elements.
Where it loses me though, is with one particular quirk that it seems to employ once or twice an episode. Through various situations that come into play, there are sequences that end up causing Plug or Aresta to essentially piss their panties. While it can once or twice be explained away with the voltage thing, most of the time it’s just an excitement thing. And while it’s not graphic per se since they’re dressed for it all, there’s plenty of attention to detail with how it’s animated and the focus put on it visually, be it sprinkling through the air or pooling around them on the ground and through their clothes. And that’s far more than I ever wanted to write about girls pissing themselves.
While there’s a problematic area for me with Juden-chan in what it presents, the bulk of the show is one that I found myself really enjoying overall. It’s not a show that will tax you with its story, and you’ll want to gloss over some of the logic aspects of it all, but it has some really fun charm with the characters, the fanservice and the goofy sexuality that comes into play. It has a decent look to it, some fun action sequences and a slow growth but enjoyable relationship that had me actively rooting for Aresta and Sento. While the show is a bit of a budget show in its production, the end result is one that makes me smile and actually makes me want to check out the manga and more of the original creators work.
Japanese 2.0 Language, English Subtitles
Content Grade: B
Audio Grade: B
Video Grade: B
Packaging Grade: B+
Menu Grade: B
Extras Grade: N/A
Released By: Media Blasters
Release Date: June 25, 2013
Running Time: 300 Minutes
Video Encoding: 480i/p MPEG-2
Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1 Anamorphic Widescreen
Sony KDL70R550A 70″ LED 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.