DVD Review: And You Thought There Is Never A Girl Online? – The Complete Series

We explore the online world of MMORPG’s and the relationships inside them as we take a look at MVM Entertainment’s DVD release of And You Thought There Is Never A Girl Online? – The Complete Series. Is this a series worth picking up or is it one that should be avoided? Let’s find out in our review.

Synopsis:

Ako Tamaki has everything she could ever want: a wonderful husband, a cute outfit, and a guild filled with great friends. The problem? It’s not reality. It’s all in the online world of LA—aka Legendary Age! And when her guild meets IRL, her inability to discern between the real and online world becomes a problem. Can she trade magic spells for social skills, or will she forever be an IRL n00b?

Our View:

Adapted from Shibai Kineko’s light novel of the same name comes And You Thought There Is Never A Girl Online? a romantic slice of life comedy of sorts that sees the real world and digital world blend into one. Think Sword Art Online and Accel World but with less dangers and more cute colourful banter with a side of mild fan-service. Joyous delusional fun is one way to describe this series and despite the ending being rather inconclusive it is definitely a series worth checking out.

And You Thought There Is Never A Girl Online? takes place within two different worlds; the real world – which sees average high school student Hideki Nishimura attend school and hang out with friends – and the digital world through the free-to-play MMORPG known as Legendary Age whereby Hideki Nishimura goes by the online alias of Russian and is part of the Alley Cats guild.

This guild consists of three other characters; namely Apricot, who is the guilds leader and is often referred to as Master, Schwein and Ako; each of which being a different type of character class within this virtual world. Introductions aside Ako is infatuated with Russian; so much so that the two agree to be married within the game and when the group decide to meet each other in the real world Russian (i.e. Hideki) learns that girls actually exist online and enjoy playing games. In this case ‘Master’ is actually the student council president Kyō Goshōin, Schwein is actually the stuck up Akane Segawa and Ako is a shy timid girl that attends school briefly.

It’s here where the true story of And You Thought There Is Never A Girl Online? begins to surface as right towards the end of the first episode as we learn that Ako, who is also called Ako in the real world, cannot differentiate between the real world and online world. As a result of this new found information the Master (i.e. Kyo) creates the Net Game Club at School in order to help Ako realise the difference between the real world and the online world as well as the reality that she isn’t actually Russian’s (i.e. Hideki) wife.

This story is played through episodic adventures that chain together to deliver an underlining story that finds no real resolution; but unlike most ‘wishy-washy’ anime series the journey of getting to the final episode is more fun than one might expect. In this case each episode revolves around a new topic; whether it be a past love interest for Russian, which actually turns out to be a teacher at the school, a training camp sponsored by the developers of Legendary Age, or a siege warfare event; each episode is different with a sense of familiarity.

That familiarity being the undenying love that Ako has for Russian and eventually Russian beings to open up to Ako and accept her feelings; thus once again showing character development and a progression that most anime series of this calibure tend to forget. That’s not all either as we see Master and Schwein also come out of there ‘stereotypes’ to deliver some unique experiences; with Master becoming more self-dominant in and out of the game as well as schwein being true to herself in that she actually enjoys gaming rather than loathe them. And You Thought There Is Never A Girl Online? delivers something uniquely entertaining and while the series ends in a rather adrupt manner it does being a conclusion that one would hope for.

Extras:

Bizarrely this DVD release of And You Thought There Is Never A Girl Online? does not feature any bonus features, not even a textless opening or ending song; which considering that this is a FUNimation related product is a rather big surprise.

It is worth noting that the Blu-Ray release of And You Thought There Is Never A Girl Online? does not contain a selection of supplementary content including Episode Commentaries, Japanese Promotional Materials and textless songs. In short; if you want the superior product the Blu-Ray version is the one you want to get.

Specs:

Media:  DVD 9 x2
Region: 2
Running Time:  2:49:34 (Disc 1), 2:01:54 (Disc 2)
Video: MPEG-2
Audio: Dolby Digital 2.0 224kbps (English & Japanese)
Subtitles: English (White)
Resolution: 720 x 480 (480p)
Aspect Ratio: 16:9 Widescreen
Frame Rate: 30 fps

Overall:

And You Thought There Is Never A Girl Online? is an unusual slice-of-life styled romantic comedy that mostly revolves around Hideki Nishimura’s online character Russian as well as Ako, both of whom met within the online Massively-Multiplayer-Online-Role-Playing-Game Legendary Age. Initially it begins with Ako confessing her feelings to Russian, which then see them getting married within the game, but when the guild mates decide to meet in real life it is discovered that Ako has a blurred vision of real and digital.

As a result the guild, which consist of Master, Schwein and Russian form a Net Club within the school in order to help Ako become reconnected within the real world; but alas this is harder than it may seem. From this the group play Legendary Age on school grounds while building a deeper bond amongst themselves while demonstrating to Ako the differences between real world and virtual world. Whether it be the dangers of online gaming, training camps with friends or a school festival; the group try everything but alas it doesn’t always work out. Fortunately the storyline is fun and has some cute charms with each character offering a unique perspective on what a slice-of-life story situated within both the real and gaming world.

Storyline events aside this DVD release is a bit of a mediocre experience of expected quality. Sure enough the visual presentation and the subtitles are as one would expect from a DVD release such as this, especially for a FUNimation releated product; but the lack of ‘any’ bonus features is disappointing. That’s not all as while an English Dub is included (of which is only presented in Stereo sound) the quality of the dub is not as consistent with other FUNimation produced dubs. Of course it is not as bad as a Sentai Filmworks dub; but it’s not on par with other dubs and as such the original Japanese audio track provides a far more authentic and entertaining experience; especially when the dialogue involves Ako, Master and the homeroom teacher; but alas these are just my personal opinions.

Regardless of the disappointments And You Thought There Is Never A Girl Online? is a fun series with a different kind of love story and it is well worth checking out; especially the Blu-Ray release which feature both superior picture quality and supplementary contents.

Score: review-stars-3

And You Thought There Is Never A Girl Online? – The Complete Series will be available on DVD and Blu-Ray from the 10th September 2018.

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About Scott Emsen
Scott is the Founder and Executive Editor of AnimeBlurayUK but in the past he has worked at ZOMGPlay, Rice Digital and Funstock and was once a Community Moderator for the Nokia N-Gage forums. Based in the UK, he loves anything related to Games & Anime and in In his spare time you'll mostly find him playing on one of his many gaming consoles; namely the PS Vita, PS4 or Xbox One.

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