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The Anime Network - first impressions

Here in Philly, we finally have Phase One of The Anime Network on Comcast digital cable's Video on Demand. This isn't meant to be a review of any of the shows on the network, just a review of how the network is being handled and my impressions of it so far.

As of right now, it's absolutely free to digital cable subscribers to watch any of the shows offered. Good reason for me to test it out :) The Video on Demand menus are fairly easy to use once you give it a good look-over. The Anime Network is listed under the header "The Cutting Edge" and the sub-header "Anime." Then you get put into a genre menu. Your choices are the basics...comedy, science fiction, action and martial arts. Right now, some of the titles are under the wrong categories. For example, Neon Genesis Evangelion is listed under comedy and Golden Boy is listed under science fiction. I'm going to give them the benefit of the doubt and assume that the mistakes are simply because this is the very first phase of the channel. Once you find a show you want to watch, just click OK on your Comcast remote and you're good to go.

Tonight, I watched the first episode of Noir. Immediately I noticed that the opening theme song is in Japanese and unsubtitled. However, once the show started....it's dubbed with no subs for the kanji. Not a big deal for me, since I usually watch shows dubbed, but I know that some of the rabids out there will have a big problem with this. Other than that, it's just like watching a DVD. With the Video on Demand system, you can pause, rewind, fast forward or stop as you please. All the animation is there, including the commercial break eyecatches, and the ending theme, like the opening, is in Japanese with no subs.

Overall, I'm happy with the setup. It's just like being able to rent the first few episodes of a series before you buy them. (Right now, only the first two episodes of all of the series are available.) I'd like to know what the price would eve

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