The Voices of a Distant Star

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The Voices of a Distant Star

Postby MrDisco » September 10th, 2006, 5:02 am

Hoshi no Koe was a short ova that came out in '03. The work of one man (Makoto Shinkai), it was clearly a labor of love. The anime had stunning visuals and a love story that dispensed with unnecessary dialog (and characters for that matter). At its core are two friends who get caught up in a war against an unknown enemy. Mikako joins the UN force to take the fight to space, while Noboru remains behind on Earth. In a rare display of scientific reality, Mikako's text messages to Noboru become fewer and far between as the vast distances between the two accumulate. the twist in this romance story is the time dilation effect, as the father Mikako travels at the speed of light, the older Noboru becomes back on Earth.

The manga I believe takes place slightly before the anime and goes through the same plot points. The manga has the luxury of adding a bit more dialog, however for the most part it too is sparsely written. A few additional characters have been added to flesh out the story as Mikako and Noboru wrestle with their feelings and the effect the passage of time (or in Mikako's case the lack of) has on them. The ending is different in the manga and is a bit less ambiguous, but it still captures the essence of the story.

The art is average..nothing remarkable or memorable. The few panels that depict the UN's mecha fighters ('tracers') are generic humanoid robots which again are instantly forgettable. Given the nature of the story the art is of less importance to the story that is being told.

Tokyopop's adaptation seems pretty good. I didn't find any glaring translation errors (aside from the curious addition of "the" to the title). SFX are left untouched/untranslated, while 4 colour pages start of the story. Personally I doubt it has much re-reading value but it does make a nice addition for anyone who was a fan of the ova. Overall I give it a 7.5/10
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