Digimon Tamers is a Japanese anime television series and the third installment in the Digimon franchise, produced by Toei Animation. The series takes place in a new setting separate from the preceding series, Digimon Adventure and Digimon Adventure 02, where the characters utilize cards from the collectible card games. The series aired in Japan from April 2001 to March 2002.
Takato Matsuki creates his Digimon partner Guilmon when he slips a mysterious blue card he found in his deck through his hand-held card reading device, changing it into a D-Arc that scans his OC Digimon to create his new friend. Guilmon bio-emerges from the Digital World and is found later by Takato. Henry Wong met his Digimon Terriermon when he rose from the screen of a computer game, while Rika Nonaka's Digimon Renamon approached her to ask to be made stronger, since Rika was famous for her skills on the Digimon card game. Kazu Shioda, Kenta Kitagawa and Jeri Katou, Takato's friends from school, and Suzie Wong, Henry's little sister, become Tamers later on in the adventure, and the team eventually runs into Ryo Akiyama, Rika's rival and fellow Digimon Tamer. The children also have repeated encounters with Calumon, a mysterious Digimon that has the power to make other Digimon digivolve but dislikes fighting and only wants to play and eat junk food, and Impmon, a Digimon that left his Tamers Ai and Mako because he felt neglected, and has come to hate Digimon who work with humans.
Along the way, the kids learn to be responsible for those creatures as a mysterious man known as Mitsuo Yamaki tries to stop Digimon, known to the government as "Wild Ones", from coming to the real world. Running the black ops agency Hypnos, Yamaki is in charge of monitoring all Digimon activity around the globe. Later, the new Tamers are forced to fight a group of evil Digimon calling themselves the Deva, who serve the Digimon Sovereigns and believe that Digimon shouldn't partner with humans. Their true purpose to come into the human world was to capture Calumon and take him back to the Digital World so they could use his power of Digivolution. The Tamers and friends then decide to leave for the Digital World to rescue Calumon. They destroy all of the Devas but Antylamon, who became Suzie's partner, then confront and defeat Impmon, who has become Beelzemon after making a deal with Zhuquiaomon to assassinate the Tamers. After traveling to the Digital World to rescue Calumon the Tamers fight the digital god, but finally agree to work together in order to destroy the D-Reaper, a maintenance program that has run out of control and is threatening to delete reality.
Why It Rocks
- It's a deconstruction of the Mons genre, a la Shin Megami Tensei.
- The idea of fusing a human (in this case, a Tamer) with his Digimon is a great idea.
- The songs are awesome, including the opening theme, "The Biggest Dreamer" and his Biomerge theme.
- The main characters (Takato, Rika and Henry) are likeable, is the same with their respective Digimon (Guilmon, Renamon and Terriermon) and others characters like Calumon, Jeri Kato, Impmon, Ryo Akiyama, Mitsuo Yamaki and Janyu "Tao" Wong (Henry and Suzie's father)
- Although some characters is not be great, a least as decent characters, like Kazu, Kenta, Suzie, Takato's parents, ect
- The final episode is awesome, heartwarming, and pretty tearjerking.
- The designs of the human characters and the Digimon are great as usual.
- The dark tone is runs fine, and is well balanced with the lighthearted elements.
- This is the beginning of the Digimon multiverse with this series without being related to the pasts series, more with references.
- It's considered to be the best Digimon season so far.
- Although the English dub is decent, It has defects such as having bad jokes that are in serious situations, some voices are not well suited to their characters, etc...
- The Latin Spanish dubbing is worse, since like Digimon Frontier, is was dubbed in Cuernavaca, and the voice acting has a negative reputation.
- The dark tone, despite well-balanced, it can be too disturbing for children, especially the infamous scene in episode 47, where the audience is treated to a nightmare fuel sequence in which Jeri is forced to relive her mother's death.
Due to its differences from the first two Digimon series, Tamers received mixed reviews when it first aired in the United States (September 1, 2001). Tim Jones of THEM Anime writes, "Although Digimon Tamers has its faults (slow character development, a sudden change in new characters from the last series, and a less-than-exciting first half), the more you watch it, and the further you get into it, the more you'll enjoy it." In comparison to the first two series, Tamers also displayed darker undertones in its plot. According to English-language dub voice actor Dave Wittenberg, the new series possessed "an element of seriousness" that was not present in the first two series. Additionally, some parts would be better understood by older viewers due to the introduction of more difficult concepts. Regarding this, Konaka believes that Calumon and Terriermon were able to tone down the grim and serious atmosphere of the occasionally tough scenes throughout the series.