“Digimon Tri: Reunion” Review
By: Steve Zec
There are many anime that are an essential part of our childhoods. Pokemon and Yu Gi Oh are some of the most well-known among them, and Digimon is definitely right in there as well.
Here is a little quick history of Digimon. On March 6, 1999 a short 20 minute film called Digimon Adventure was released in Japan; it was about a kid named Taichi and his little sister Hikari who encounter a mysterious egg that hatches into a dinosaur-looking creature known as a Digimon, named Agumon. They have a little adventure fighting the evil Digimon Parriotmon, the result of the battle was also witnessed by six other kids.
The next day March 7, 1999 was the debut of an anime series called Digimon Adventures, a 54 episode series that takes place a few years later. It is about Taichi and the six other kids that witnessed Agumon and Parriotmon’s battle. They are at a summer camp and get sucked into this other world, known as the digital world, when they meet these creatures known as Digimon, each of them being a partner to Taichi and the others. Eventually they are joined by Hikari and the original Chosen Children, or as they are known in the dub, Digidestineds are formed. The series was a hit in both Japan and internationally, and it lead to a sequel series Digmon Adventures 02. Then the Digimon anime became an anthology series with several different series over the years each with different realities and different characters, all of which had a beginning, middle, and end, something a series like Pokemon lacked.
On November 15, 2015 Digimon Tri: Reunion was released, the first of six films known together as Digimon Tri about the original cast from Digimon Adventures, older and now in high school in the year 2005. As of this date, four films have been released in Japan, and recently the first movie Digimon Tri: Reunion was released on Blu-ray here in the states. I just got my copy, and am here to give you my thoughts.
If you are a long time fan and wanted to see a real Digimon movie, not the mess that was Digimon the Movie, well you finally got your wish. It is nice to be able to own the original Japanese version of Digimon legally, and have a faithful dub.
I do wish though that they kept “Butterfly” as the opening song and not a new version of the old dub theme, but that is just a nit pick. Believe it or not the rest of the music in the dub is left in-tact, and we even got some anime heavy hitters like Vic Mignogna, Christina Vae, Kate Higgins, Cherami Leigh, Johnny Yong Bosh, and so on, along with some returning actors from the old dub. And best of all, an accurate script to the original Japanese, how do you like that? I have this weird relationship with the old Digimon dub. It was the version of the anime I first saw, and the acting is good, but those added puns and jokes… thank god that is gone. So I give the dub a 8.5/10, but I still prefer the original Japanese. That is just the kind of anime geek I am.
Now as for the story itself, I don’t want to spoil too much, but we do have an X-Men story here with the Digimon that causes a rift between Taichi and Yamato, and to my surprise they take the opposite side of what I thought they would take. The story takes place in 2005, but they do have errors there. I saw a couple of smart phones even though it is supposed to be 2005, but that is a minor detail.
As for relationships, they are teasing that Takeru might have a girlfriend, but clearly you see him and Hikari flirt. We will see where that goes, if they don’t get together, their siblings might, as usual I get some yuri vibes from Taichi and Yamato… though really what Digimon series don’t you get yuri vibes from the main character and the rival. What I am excited for is, they are pushing the Koushiro and Mimi relationship hard. I can’t wait for the last movie when they do get together. Outside of Takeru and Hikari, my favorite ship has always been Koushiro and Mimi since episode 10 of Digimon Adventures, so I am so happy and excited.
We are also introduced to new characters, a couple of adults that work for the government, Daigo Nishijima and Maki Himekawa. They are interesting characters, are they friend or foe? They are clearly hiding something. There’s also new girl named Meiko Mochizuki, a nice cute girl, maybe a potential love interest for Taichi.
This movie does show how hard life can be growing up. For example, there is a sub-plot of Taichi trying to get everyone together for his soccer game, but everyone else has plans, which is very relatable. There is this funny line when Yamato says, “Taichi has changed”, then they go into the scene with Taichi saying, “Yamato hasn’t changed.” And this applied to everyone even adults, and you see examples in the future Tri movies.
I strongly recommend you check this movie out. Watch both the sub and dub version, they are both great. (Also, Tri movie 2-4 is available on Crunchyroll.) This movie overall gets a score of 9/10.