Boogiepop Phantom Vol. #4 -

Anime/Manga Reviews

Mania Grade: B-

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  • Audio Rating: A-
  • Video Rating: B+
  • Packaging Rating: B
  • Menus Rating: B+
  • Extras Rating: B-
  • Age Rating: 12 & Up
  • Region: 2 - Europe
  • Released By: ADV Films UK
  • MSRP: £19.99
  • Running time: 85
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Disc Resolution: 480i/p (mixed/unknown)
  • Disc Encoding: MPEG-2
  • Series: Boogiepop Phantom

Boogiepop Phantom Vol. #4

By Paul Jacques     November 18, 2003
Release Date: November 17, 2003

Boogiepop Phantom Vol. #4
© ADV Films UK

What They Say
Poom Poom came down the heaven. He holds a balloon and travels floating around… to the flower country…. And the doll country… and the dinosaur country.

And, in the world of Poom Poom where everything is perfect, in the amusement park where there are no grown ups… there are powerful children who live without pain…

Manaka knew nothing of the world. Trapped in the house by her grandmother, life became more and more impossible… and one day, it ended. She knew that Death wasn’t something to be feared… that there were things beyond.

And. Although she couldn’t possibly know what it meant she also came to know what Echoes was. And, what Echoes is.

A year after the Rainbow disappeared, life returned to normal. Time unwinds itself and the darkness retreats. It does not, however, vanish.

Some understand that strange events happened. Quests continue, but the veil has been lifted and sunlight has returned. Maybe.

The Review!
Finally all will be revealed… it will be revealed, won’t it? Oh, you’re not going to like this last disk.

I listened in Japanese and English, and no fault was heard with either soundtrack.

The video presentation is extremely good, with no problems detected, but it is highly stylized. This is done in a soft focus, slightly dirty optics style, but the Anime characters are always well defined, although the colours will look a little washout (but that is deliberate).

On the front of the box we have the real Boogiepop (in both guises). On the back we have twelve scene shots from the stories enclosed. No insert supplied, and the disc has a printed graphic of Boogiepop with clock.

Menus options continue to be presented as butterflies, whilst some of the characters appear and disappear on screen in a ghost like fashion. All links worked and no dead ends were encountered.

We have plenty of original sketches to flick through. The notes and character bios are very informative. Last but not least we have six promos.

Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
The first episode concerns the little guy in the hat, the one who hands out balloons for a hobby, who goes by the name of Poom Poom. And we see events from his perspective. We learn several things about the little guy; he sprung from the mind of Akane; he gets his power from Manaka, and her ability to call up the bad past events via her butterflies; he is very attracted to emotion of regret – lost childhood dreams - and this is what he uses to find his next “friend”; his home is Paisley Park because that represents a lot of failed dreams for adults and should have been a place of hope for children.

The we get to see what happens when Nagi goes to visit Paisley Park, and she runs into Poom Poom’s (evolutionary) friends. And just when it looks like Nagi is getting toasted the real Boogiepop appears to read Poom Poom the riot act.

The next episode is about Manaka’s life, and boy did she have a hard time growing up. With her mother loosing her memory and Granny laying on a big guilt trip about her father being unknown, life was very tough. We learn why she created Poom Poom, what she fears and what she hopes for. In the end her wish does comes true and she gets to evolve, taking with her the electrical field that supports the other echoes (aka phantoms).

The final episode is set a year after the previous story. We find Toka and Kazuko taking their entrance exam for College. Only Toka has another day job, that involves dressing up. Meanwhile Kishida (the reporter) turns out to more than just a reporter, in fact he has three identities and one of them is bad. Boogiepop makes an appearance in order to save a women from death, and finally puts closure on the last of the echoes. The final scenes show a bright and vibrant city, with the remaining characters no longer dwelling on the past but looking forward to their respective futures.

There is only one way to watch this series, in one sitting, otherwise it won’t make a lick of sense. Mind you in it’s present form it doesn’t answer enough questions to leave you feeling satiated. I can’t help but feel something got edited out along the way. I would like to have had the following answered-

1.What caused the white light? Was it someone ascending to the next evolutionary level?
2.Why was there a fight on the roof just prior to the white light?
3.Where was the real Boogiepop whilst the echo Boogiepop was flitting around?
4.What was Manticore to start with?
5.Who was the dude on the cross who had so much influence on Manaka? Is it Nagi’s brother?

These questions and many more will not be answered by this volume.

In summary- It should have been a masterpiece, but I’m afraid they forgot to add a proper ending, talk about fumbling the ball on the goal line.

Japanese 2.0 Language ,English 5.1 Language,English 2.0 Language ,English Subtitles ,Original Line Art ,Producer & Character Notes ,Promo Evolution 1-6 ,Japanese Credits ,Directors Commentary

Review Equipment
JVC 28" Pure Flat Wide Screen TV, Pioneer 454 Progressive Scan code free DVD player, Logitech Z-680 THX DD/DTS receiver & Speakers. Secondary equipment, 21” Sony Trinitron monitor, ATI 9700pro & PowerDVD v4, Creative Audigy 2 & headphones.


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