Review by: Sophie Stevens
Publisher: FUNimation Entertainment
MSRP: $29.98 US
Running Time: 95 minutes
Rating: TV MA
Release Date: Available Now
Reasons for fighting and reasons for living.
Claymores that push their abilities to the limit don’t often come back as Clare herself has witnessed with a Claymore crossed the line and became something of a hybrid between Claymore and Yoma. These Awakened Beings walk a different path thanks to their need for flesh and thus are seen as vile monsters that no longer have a right to live. Yet what if a Claymore can resist the urge to turn into this new dark breed?
Episodes 9 and 10 of Claymore introduced a mission Clare has accepted to take on with her three of her fellow “sisters of the blade.” The mission was to slay an Awakened Being that just so happened to be male, a fact that has the Claymore’s thinking back to the old days when there were male Claymores. The battle wasn’t a stroll in the park, either, and yes the forest ran red with Claymore blood. In the end, however, the Awakened Being was brought down.
During the battle, however, it came to Clare’s attention that her fellow Claymores do push their powers to the breaking point. It isn’t until after the battle that one of the Claymore’s comes to the conclusion that there was a reason the organization sent out these specific Claymores. She makes a connection between each of the girls and a startling revelation is made that shocks and intrigues Clare. The sister also warns her fellow Claymores that it might not be a good idea to trust the organization. Meanwhile, a shrouded figure and another Claymore watch them from afar. Perhaps there’s something to the claim that the organization doesn’t have these girls best interests in mind. Then again, it’s too early to tell.
After that event, Clare receives another mission to take on an Awakened Being that is classified in the single digits (meaning it’s considerably tougher than usual). Traveling with Raki, however, Clare instructs the young man to stay behind. This, of course, doesn’t sit well with Raki who wants to be useful to her. When she arrives at a designated meeting spot, she encounters another Claymore named Ophelia who happens to be on the top of the list of the best Claymores. Unfortunately, Ophelia isn’t the most stable of the top-ranking Claymores. In fact, she’s absolutely out-of-her-mind psychotic.
Thinking Ophelia is here to aid her on taking on an Awakened Being, Clare is attacked by her fellow sister in a horrific manner. Surprisingly enough, it’s Raki that comes to Clare’s aid but, of course, he’s no match for a Claymore of Ophelia’s caliber and – to top it off – the Awakened Being finally does show up. Since his introduction in the first episode, we knew that Raki isn’t a complete coward and the way he stands up to both Ophelia and the Awakened Being shows that he not only has a backbone but he also has genuine feelings for Clare. In fact, when the pair make their escape in the middle of battle, there’s an unexpected and heartfelt moment between Raki and Clare.
Setting off to confront Ophelia once again, though, it’s clear that Clare isn’t able to defeat an experienced Claymore like her. It’s a losing battle to be sure and it isn’t until help arrives in the form of a familiar face that Clare manages to escape with her life. I won’t spoil the surprise but the outcome of this meeting and the following rematch between Clare and Ophelia will definitely be remembered.
Claymore is definitely one of those anime series that just keeps getting better and better with each chapter. Since the first episode, we’ve followed Clare on her quest for vengeance and it was good but the journey has taken us deeper into an exhilarating and deeply involving story well worth following. Chapter 3 may lack the emotional depth of the second chapter but it definitely doesn’t disappoint in the action and suspense department.
DVD REVIEW BREAKDOWN
Not only do we learn more about the Awakened Beings but we also come to find out a secret about Clare and the three other sisters of the blade that joined her on mission to take down a male Awakened Being. Then Clare is offered another mission when she encounters a psychotic Claymore that tests the limits of her powers.
VIDEO QUALITY: A
Claymore contains some of the best animation with characters and action sequences that are visually outstanding. It’s great work that looks good on DVD.
AUDIO QUALITY: A+
Once again, the voice acting is first-rate and you just have to adore the beautiful score in this anime. We still love the opening and ending theme songs.
There’s an interview with Yasunori Honda who is the Sound Director for the series and he’s actually very informative. The Episode 11 audio commentary is fun … Colleen Clinkenbeard and Monica Rial are funny. There’s also textless opening and closing theme songs and a few trailers as well.
Chapter 3 of Claymore is, by far, one of the best chapters in this already intriguing and downright exhilarating series. What started as a quest for revenge has turned into a battle for survival for Clare as she finds herself realizing she has something to live for in her dark world. Trust me when I say that Claymore is nothing short of breathtaking.