Sunday, 17 April 2011

OVAs and Extras: A Rough Guide

Hey guys!

There seems to be a large amount of confusion in the Kuroshitsuji fanbase about the OVA's and other extra material that has been created for it, this has inspired an article, using Kuro as an example (mostly so I can geek about it!) to explain movies, OVAs, audio CDs, and what happens when the manga is different from the anime! If there isn't any confusion, then I obviously have the wrong end of the stick, but I'd just like to help out some peeps who may have been feeling confused about such things as OVAs, musicals, movies, and manga!

When you start watching anime you are originally baffled by the new words you learn, such as; sub, dub, arc, fanbase, fandom, fanfiction, fanservice, fanart, hentai, yaoi, yuri, harem and many many more. The confusion only multiplies with the language barrier if you choose to watch it in Japanese, and finding the right, or the official sub is often very hard. But I have to say, from personal experience, the most confusing thing about watching anime is when you find out that there were movies, OVAs or even musicals that you totally missed!

The basics:
Almost every anime has had a special episode or movie made for it. Special episodes are also referred to as OVAs (I've no idea what it stands for, sorry o.o) and these can vary in length from being 3-5 minutes long, or to being 45-60 minutes long. A lot of the time they contain a little bit of fanservice, and maybe a little bit of crack (crazy out of characterness or random events that make no sense in the storyline)!

Movies aren't movies such as the ghibli movies, and they won't be shown in cinema's (theaters) in this country like they are in Japan. That doesn't mean that they aren't totally epic full length movies! These, in contrast with OVAs are pretty serious, and usually follow a slightly sepperate storyline from the anime. The characters remain in character the whole way through, and there usually isn't any fanservice or crack! A lot of the time there will be OCs (original characters) created specifically for the story!

Audio CDs aren't my strong point I have to admit. I've heard a couple for books such as Harry Potter and Count Karlstein but I can't say I've invested in any for a manga. They will most likely be in Japanese, as they'll be either an audio version of the manga, read much like a script, with different voice actors (also called Seiyuu(s) in Japanese) for every character, or will have a special story written for them. There was one made for Fruit's Basket, but it wasn't put on public release, and was given to a few lucky contest winners, the author of the manga, and the publishers and editors. I believe that audio CDs can sometimes be quite hard to get your hands on.

And in the incredibly rare case that there are musicals - though I've only ever heard of Kuroshitsuji having musicals made for it - they will be a mixture between both a movie and an OVA. That means that the characters will remain as in character as possible, yet there will probably still be some fanservice and crack. There will most likely be OCs created for it (such as Alan Humphries and Eric Slingsby in 'Kuroshtisuji Musical II: The Most Beautiful Death In The World').

Now we've covered the basics I can move on to helping those confused about all the Kuroshitsuji OVAs!!!

Kuroshitsuji, series I:
As far as I know there was only one OVA made for this series, even though they advertised another one set in Japan. I just rewatched it for the purposes of writing this, and I have to say, it really does remind me of the musicals. Mostly just the end where they all bow, but I think it might possibly be the delivery as well!

His Butler: On Stage
 The Funtom company is putting on a performance for the poor/orphaned children of London, but the ship carrying the actors has an accident and won't arrive in time for the performance. And Ciel and co have to take the place of the missing actors in a rather odd version of Shakespeare's Hamlet! Merely called 'His Butler: On Stage'. This OVA does provide us with a rather a lot of crack!
It can be found here on!

Kuroshtisuji, series II:
The OVAs of series II are all a little jumbled up. Mostly because they chose to release part 1, and part 2 of 'Ciel in Wonderland' sepperately and instead of having them as one OVA, the first part was OVA 1, and the second was OVA 3 or something silly like that. Therefore, there was an OVA called 'Welcome To The Phantomhives' in between. For the purposes of simplicity I'm going to set it out a little differently here. But please bare in mind when searching for it that if you just search 'Kuroshtisuji Ciel in Wonderland part 1' or 'part 2' it will come up! (I'll still provide links where I can though!!!)

Welcome To The Phantomhives
This OVA is every Sebastian fangirl's dream. It works much like a dating sim, except for the fact that the character's who's perspective you are seeing everything from does have a personality, and a role of her own in the storyline. I will tell you no more than that, as I don't want to spoil the surprises, but this OVA is probably the most normal out of all the Kuro OVAs. Aside from the HUGE fact that you are basically being spoken to by Sebastian there isn't too much fanservice in this one. I like it though, I think they got the balance just right!
(Something you'll notice is that the OC who's perspective you see from has red hair. This made me fangirl sooo much when I saw, and I then spent the rest of the time whilst I was watching it, pretending she was me! I have strawberry blonde/ginger hair for those of you that don't know!! xP).
It can be found here on

Ciel in Wonderland (Part I)
Wow, this OVA! It has to be one of the best OVAs I've ever seen! Who knew that Lewis Carrol's characters fit so perfectly with Yana Toboso's? I certainly wouldn't have ever put the two together before news of this OVA got out!
The music composed for this OVA is also something I love about it!! It's a nice mixture between the gothic music in Kuro, and something more fun and crazy!
With Ciel as Alice, Sebastian as a hardly appearing White Rabbit (who seems more like an idea for Ciel to chase than anything else), Grell as particularly awesome Cheshire Cat (he already had the grin!!!) and Undertaker bringing some sinister darkness back to the lovied up (yes, I strongly believe that due to Tim Burton's 'Alice in Wonderland' we lost a lot of the fear that I believe The Mad Hatter should have retained. I don't think he's supposed to be a particularly nice character at all) role of The Mad Hatter, it makes an amazing OVA.
Of course it's FULL to the brim with crack and a reasonable amount of fanservice as well!
And for those of you missing dear old Auntie Anne, she makes an appearance at the end as a mixture between The Queen of Hearts and The Red Queen!
It can be found  here on

Ciel In Wonderland (part II)
In my opinion they shouldn't have left it so long between the first and second part. Not that I'm complaining, but I had to re-watch the first part because I could hardly remember it.
Ahahahha! When I wrote about the first part I just included things from the second as well, so I've basically said all that I need to say here!! I hope you like this OVA as much as I did!!
It can be found here on

The Making of Kuroshitsuji II
This OVA is an amazing one if you want pure crack! I swear to you, it makes next to no sense at all.
It's still very good though, just incredibly random. This is the only OVA with Claude, Alois, Hannah and the "triplets" in. You have to give it a bit of time to warm up, as it appears quite awkward at first, but once it gets going it actually pretty good!
I'm afraid to say that I haven't been able to find it online. I do have a link to a site where you can download it, but you will probably need to either download VLC player or an extension of DivX to be able to watch it. Hopefully it'll play with subs for you guys!
Simply click the GREY 'download file' button on this page. (NOT THE GREEN ONES!!! THAT'S AN ADD!!!!)

Kuroshitsuji Manga:
All this needs is a very simple explanation. Don't start getting pissy like this retard at a con did once when he picked up the last free copy of the manga and went 'What! But this doesn't happen in the anime!!' I sooo wanted to turn around and give him a black eye. THE. MANGA. CAME. FIRST. YOU. TWAT!!!!!
*Cough* Gomen... anywayz. Basically after the Curry arc finishes everything changes slightly, with Ciel receiving a letter from the queen about a traveling circus that has been touring England, and in every town it's stayed in most, or all of the children have gone missing. This is an incredible arc in the manga, and one I'd have loved to see in the anime. From there on out the story is totally different, and just to prove how different it is... Ciel is still human, it's been 30 chapters since the Jack the Ripper arc and Grell has only just arrived again, Alois and Claude don't exist and neither do Angela, Ash or Drocell! For the love of Yana Toboso, please, PLEASE do not start going 'but this isn't like the aaaaniimeee *whine, whine, whine*'. Because I will hunt you down, and punch your face off! Ahahaha... no... seriously... *serious face*

Kuroshitsuji Musicals:
These are pure GENIUS!!! I love who ever came up with the idea for these more than Grell loves Sebastian and Will put together!!! Yes, that much!!!
I've only seen the second one, and there aren't even any subs for it, but... Oh. My. God! It's the most amazing thing I have ever seen on a stage in my life!!! I will, one day see it live if it's one of the last things I do!!!
'Kuroshitsuji Musical II: The Most Beautiful Death In The World' is an original storyline that I've heard Yana Toboso helped direct. Ciel receives a letter from the queen asking him to investigate a recent score of murders. Mysteriously young ladies have been found dead with out a mark upon them, seeming to suffer a completely painless death, some were even smiling. Of course Ciel accepts and he and Sebastian set off to find the killer.
This play has an awful lot of shinigami butt in it! You have all the main guys, Will, Ronald and of course Grell. But this time two OCs have been added to the mix. Alan Humphries and Eric Slingsby are a darling duo of yet more hinted yaoi and they will break your heart!!!
With a full cast of dancers and singers you get to experience crack and fanservice as you have never seen before (Ciel saying nya, the corset scene that they just had to slip in there, and Sebby about to spank Ciel, puuuure wiiiiin!!!)!! You wait till you hear Sebastian (played by the god that is Yuuya Matsushita) sing. And a lot of men with confidence issues could take a cue (no pun intended I swear!) from Uehara Takuya who plays Grell. It takes courage to wear a small night dress, dance seductively and sing a song called 'R-Shitei (Grell no Yobai)' - which roughly translates as 'R-Rated (Grell's booty call)'- in front of a packed audience!

The most amazing things for me about this play were the courage of the actors (such as Uehara Takuya), who obviously put an inordinate amount of work into it, and the details of the costumes and the small details in the characters.
Seeing as I have always adored costume and I now cosplay, seeing up close how well the stage costumes such as Sebastian's tailcoat and Ciel's pink dress are put together (and in the case of Ciel's jackets) adapted for stage was incredibly interesting. I have a huge admiration for most of the cast members as a lot of them had to wear wigs, which get itchy and annoying after a while.
Other small details that I noticed and loved were things like how in the song Keiyaku (Contract) at the beginning of the performance Yuuya Matsushita is very free in the way he moves, especially in the way he moves his hands a lot in large extravagant gestures. But after the contract is made, and he becomes Sebastian Michaelis, butler to Earl Ciel Phantomhive, he looses that completely. He becomes very humble and you could almost say stiff. Yet he's just that good of an actor that he can still own the stage when trying to disappear into the shadows.
Another thing I noticed - and I'm seriously wondering how he did it - is that as the other actors sweated like pigs (Druitt and Eric mostly) Grell, Alan, Ciel and of course perfect little Sebby manage to stay just as they were when they first walked on stage. I don't know whether it's just they they're healthier and fitter, but it takes skill to do a very fast moving fight scene and then either sing, or make a long speech without sounding completely out of breath! Which is closely akin to how Yuuya Matsushita was able to just scoop up Yukito Nishii (Ciel) and spout endless words without them sounding stressed, as most peoples voices sound when they are carrying heavy objects.

Yukito Nishii is also quite admirable, I only just found out by searching for his name so I could write it here, that he's only 15, (born in 1995, just a year before me). You certainly wouldn't have guessed that by looking his acting skills. I truly believed that he was a young adult! ^-^
Still on the subject of ages, it's rather amazing that Yuuya Matsushita is only 21! Which means he would have been only 18 or 19 when he made his debut as Sebby in the first musical, 'That Butler: Friendship'.
Anyway, enough of me fangirling about Yuuya-kuuuuun! I'll post bellow some links to a summary full of screen caps for the second musical, and a link to somewhere you can download the second musical. I don't think there are any places online where you can watch it, as it keeps getting removed because of copyright infringement. And due to the fact that it has no subs, I strongly recommend that you read the summary first!

Summary part 1 (I take no credit for these summaries or the download! I was sent the links by a friend, and they were not written by anyone we know!):

Summary part 2

Summary Part 3

Summary part 4

To use this download simply enter your email address and the site will automatically email you the link to the download page. Apparently this helps reduce advertising, which would I suppose slow down the download speed? Don't worry, you don't get any spam from them! Or at least I haven't!
Again for this download you may have to download extra software for either Windows Media Player (for PCs) or Quicktime (Macintosh). I downloaded VLC player for Quicktime and it worked perfectly and in surprisingly high quality as well.

Song list:
 01. Keiyaku
02. Shinigami Haken Kyoukai no Theme
03. Ai wa Chi Mamire
04. Black and White
05. Shi no Toge
06. Sei to Shi no Sukima
07. R-shitei (Grell no Yobai)
08. Druitt no Jibun Sanka
09. Hanakotoba wa Kodoku Eric no Theme
10. Checkmate
11. Opera (no name given)
12. Sen no Tamashii to Ochita Shinigami
13. Unmei Alan to Eric no Theme
14. Hallucination
15. Namashitsuji no Theme

English titles:

01. Contract
02. Soul Reaper Dispatch Society Theme
03. Love is Covered in Blood
04. Black and White
05. Thorns of Death
06. The Crevice Between Life and Death
07. R-rated (Grell's Night-time Booty Call)
08. Druitt's Song of Self Praise
09. The Flower's Meaning is "Loneliness" Eric's Theme
10. Checkmate
11. Opera (no name given)
12. 1000 Souls and a Fallen Soul Reaper
13. Fate, Alan and Eric's Theme
14. Hallucination
15. Live Butler Theme

It would be well worth finding subbed versions of as many of these songs as you can on youtube. 'Ai wa Chi Mamire', 'Keiyaku' and 'R-Shitei (Grell no Yobai)' are the best ones I could find subs for in my opinion!

Have fun indulging in your Kuroshitsuji dreams my darlings!! (Damn I sound like Druitt xO)

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