Anime DVD Review: The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya Vol. 3

The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya Vol. 3 is a DVD that contains three episodes of the series. The episodes on this disc can be seen with an English dub, or with the original Japanese audio with English subtitles.

The first episode on the disc sees Haruhi design a logo for the SOS Brigade’s website, which she forces Kyon to add to the site. Meanwhile, Mikuru enters the club room with another girl from her class, who claims her boyfriend has mysteriously disappeared. Haruhi agrees to take on the case, but Haruhi doesn’t come up with any ideas. However, Itsuki and Yuki figure out the truth, and they have Kyon and Mikuru accompany them to help bring the mystery to an end.

The two-part episode that’s also included on this disc sees the SOS Brigade go on the club’s first retreat. Itsuki knows someone who has just finished building a mansion on a deserted island, and he invites the others to come to the island. Haruhi decides that she is a supersleuth, and insists that something mysterious will happen while they’re there. On the second day, a typhoon hits the island. This is followed by the discovery that the owner of the mansion has been murdered. Haruhi and the others try to solve the mystery.

As I watched “Remote Island Syndrome,” I couldn’t help thinking that the murder portion of the story made me think of Case Closed. A part of me almost expected to see Conan Edogawa pop up out of nowhere to help solve the murder. The answer to the mystery, however, is not something you really would have seen in a Case Closed mystery.

As I watch more of The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya, I realize that I had been rather hasty in trying to dismiss it after only seeing one episode initially. Like I said in the review for Volume 2, the series is a little slow to get going; however, now that the series has found its stride, I’ve found myself actually being interested in the story and caring for the characters.

As for the actual DVD itself, there are several extras included. First, there are two Nekoman Galleries included; they are both 35 second slideshows of Nekoman drawings that appear to have been done by some of the voice cast for The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya.

Next, there are two “Making of Haruhi” documentaries, both of which run for about 10 minutes in length. The first one is about a photoshoot Aya Hirano (the voice of Haruhi) did for a promotional poster. The second one is an autograph session for the original writer and illustrator of the light novels; Aya Hirano and Minori Chihara (the voice of Yuki) helped out at this. Of the two “Making of” documentaries on this disc, I enjoyed the autograph session one more than the photoshoot one.

There are three “TV Previews” included as extras. The first two don’t match what we saw during the actual episodes, while the third one does. I find this to be rather confusing.

There are three “Adventures of the ASOS Brigade” episodes included, as well as a US launch event video. Overall, I haven’t been that impressed with the “Adventures of the ASOS Brigade” episodes. I also really didn’t like the “shaky camera” look of the US launch event video. There are also four trailers for other Bandai Entertainment properties, as well as credits.

If you like The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya and haven’t added the series to your home video collection, you could either purchase the single DVD releases for the series, or you could pick up one of the box sets that was released for the series. But with Bandai discontinuing distributing products in North America, it’s best to try to locate these DVDs sooner rather than later.

I wrote this review after watching a copy of The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya Vol. 3 that I checked out through the King County Library System.

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