Though Myriad Colors Phantom World first hit the air nearly 2 years ago now, the home release is finally here in an awesome limited edition blu-ray set from Funimation!
The set comes in a sturdy cardboard box, with a cool art piece on the back – the info included on a separate sheet so that the box could be devoted to unique art.
Similar to Orange and ReLife, this box set also features a collection of art cards that spotlights the main characters.
Rather than just your standard, run-of-the-mill art cards, however, these have a unique element to them. Hold the cards one way and you get one outfit…
Ok…but what if I look at it the other way? Just give it a little turn and…
So each art-card really counts as two! A pretty cool twist on the standard art card packaging that many of the limited editions have included.
There’s also more than just “textless openings and closings” when it comes to the extras. Commentary on episode 7 rounds out the usual suspects of on-disc extras. While Funimation is making some good strides with the bundled goodies, I’d really like to see more behind the scenes specials on some of these limited edition sets. A conversation with the director or voice actors about the project…just a little more to add some depth to the on-disc extras.
Overall, this is a well-constructed and good quality set, if you’re a fan of the series in the first place. Below you’ll find our overall impressions from the series when it aired early last year. Interested in picking it up? You can buy it from Funimation here!
In the universe of Myriad Colors Phantom World, the release of an experimental virus a decade ago has permanently altered the way the human brain works. As a result, supernatural beings known as “phantoms” are now visible by the general population. Though they are largely uninterested in actively harming humans, there are some phantoms that actively disrupt daily life, or are otherwise hostile. Luckily, children began developing special abilities in order to combat and seal phantoms, and Myriad Colors follows the adventures of a team of high schoolers seeking to maintain peace and discover the truth behind their strange world.
I’ll say that Myriad Colors earned some points with me right from the start with the utilization of some classic brain-teasers and examples of cognitive dissonance in order to set the stage for their larger universe. Though the introduction was only about 60-90 seconds, it gave a solid foundation as to how a neural disruption could effectively change the world as we know it without the need for an apocalypse-class disaster. The general consensus is that the virus has created a world of inconvenience more than anything; humans aren’t huddled in random caves struggling to survive, they’re going about their day to day lives and happen to put up with a large mechanical duck suddenly appearing out of the walls and disappearing just as quickly.
On that note – the animation is interesting, with the phantoms providing a unique opportunity for the series to shine. Pixelated phantoms gradually sharpen into more traditionally animated figures, and the opening scene implements this technique with the background as well, which piqued my interest from the start. As the series progresses, we see this style expanded upon, which is impressive from a technical perspective. The product of Kyoto Animation, best known for the soul-crushingly sad yet beautifully animated Clannad, it’s not surprising to see the ambition from an aesthetic perspective is certainly there.
There’s not much drama in the world of Myriad Colors from the outset, and with few exceptions the show remains cheery and light-hearted throughout. A welcome departure from other series like Charlotte, which utilized a bait-and-switch technique before pulling the narrative rug out from under the viewer entirely.
What makes a lot of the comedic elements so successful is its self-awareness. Anime fans familiar with this type of series know that many scenes involving “character development” typically end with an awkward tumble that ends with the protagonist having his hand somewhere it shouldn’t be, and one of his many female companions blushing, physically assaulting him, calling him an idiot, etc. This show is painfully aware of this trope and goes out of its way to avoid it. Though it often ends in a similar result, it’s still effective comedy nonetheless.
The characters, while interesting, aren’t anything out of the ordinary. You have your standard male protagonist, Haruhiko, who seems to be great at drawing and possesses a great deal of general knowledge on phantoms. Accompanying him is the well-endowed Mai, who draws the power of the elements from various parts on her body (I really don’t think this was an accident), and Reina, who consumes phantoms as a food source. The self-awareness may bring more dynamism to their relationship with one another, which is promising, but for overall there’s nothing exceptional about the characters themselves.
At the end of the day, Myriad Colors is a fun series that keeps things light and visually engaging with unique and well-executed animation. Has it been done before? Absolutely. Does that make it any less entertaining? Hell no. Enjoy!
Note: We were provided a review copy of this set by Funimation in exchange for our honest review.
Myriad Colors Phantom World84.98
- Self awareness helps to transform cliches into comedy gold
- Unique animation style
- Cool box art
- Art cards feature unique twist and are good quality
- You have to slog through a lot of clichés in the first few episodes
- The story and characters ultimately fail to stand out
- On-disc extras still lacking