Mania Grade: B
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- Audio Rating: B+
- Video Rating: B+
- Packaging Rating: B+
- Menus Rating: B+
- Extras Rating: A-
- Age Rating: 15 & Up
- Region: 1 - North America
- Released By: ADV Films
- MSRP: 29.98
- Running time: 75
- Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
- Disc Resolution: 480i/p (mixed/unknown)
- Disc Encoding: MPEG-2
- Series: Burn-Up Excess
Burn Up Excess Vol. #3
By Chris Beveridge
November 18, 2002
Release Date: December 10, 2002
Burn Up Excess Vol. #3
What They Say
© ADV Films
When a group of killer drag queens get out of jail, they've got their eye shadow fixed on Nanvel's new "makeover" device that renders the wearer beautiful or, on high setting, invisible!
Then, in an exciting cliffhanger, Rio and Team Warrior must escort a top-secret tank across the globe. But when the transport plane is attacked, Rio finds herself alone in a hostile desert, with the supertank as her only ally-and her only hope of survival! Don't miss the wildest, sexiest, strangest Team Warrior adventure yet!
Includes 3 complete episodes:
Slam Tank-Part 1
Slam Tank-Part 2 The Review!
The larger plot again gets touched upon, though we get a nice single episode story first, and then a two-parter that has some more direct meaning to the evil that is afoot.Audio:
For our primary viewing session, we listened to this disc in its original language of Japanese. The show features a pretty basic stereo mix that sounds good but has a fairly limited sense of directionality, with only a few moments of the forward soundstage being used. Otherwise, it sounds good but without much depth or range. We also spot checked the English language track and the Spanish language track and noted no issues with it.Video:
The transfer for the second volume is pretty much the same as the first, with only a few very minor places of cross coloration and aliasing. Colors are strong and solid with no noticeable bleeding, though the color scheme doesn’t give it a really vibrant sense most of the time.Packaging:
While Maya’s green hair is top of the bunch in my eyes, Lilica definitely comes in a very close second and she gets an appropriately sexy cover here. Much like the previous covers, there’s the blinds style background as well as the Charlie’s Angel style imagery in the “X” portion of the logo. The back cover provides a number of small snapshots of the show and of the menus as well as a decent summary of what to expect. The discs features and technical features are clearly listed, but the volume/episode numbering continues to be a mess. While the lack of a volume number is normal, it’s extremely bad form to not list the episode numbers and give people an inkling of figuring out what volume they need to get. The insert provides another shot of the cover while the reverse side is just boxart adverts.Menu:
The main menu utilizes the artwork and background from the cover in an even more vibrant color palette while the selections are listed along to the right. Moving about the menus is quick and easy and the layout is easy to figure out. Access times are fast and there’s little issue here.Extras:
There’s not much new in the way of extras here, at least beyond a new batch of production sketches. The jiggle counter makes another appearance here and builds up the stats even more for the women and the textless opening and ending sequences take another bow here as well.Content:
(please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
After the previous volume with its mostly episodic stories that let us get to know the characters better, things pick up a bit more here as we’re now in the second half of the series. Before it can really get going, they need to do a bit more on at least Nanvel, a character whose gotten the short end of the stick in this series in general.
Being the smart person she is, she wins an award for a new device she made. She’s rather quiet about it, but everyone else is really hyping her up and pushing how cool it is. What is it? A “makeover” device of sorts that bends light in a way to change how you look. Want to look like you lost thirty pounds? Here you go. This device will essentially help you to look mahvelous, darling. So with the women in Team Warrior, they’re all excited about it. But they’re not the only ones, as this gives the writers a chance to bring back their drag queen cast from the earlier episodes. With one of them now getting out of jail, and learning of this device, they figure they can use it to help get their bar going again and to pull off some capers, since they realize you can bend the light to make yourself invisible. Nanvel overall doesn’t get much more time here than anywhere else, but I was rather happy and amused to see the drag characters return.
The two parter of this volume gets into some real fun with Rio back in the lead and definitely the focus of things. Maki manages to trick her just right into a high paying new assignment where she’s going to be the escort of a very important and powerful client. Rio goes all out in trying to figure out how to impress him, and when the time comes during the flight, she offers up her best cooked food. Only to find out that she’s got the wrong guy, and the guy can’t understand why she’d be cooking for Henry.
As it turns out, Henry is actually an intelligent huge tank that was built by several nations. It’s being transported to be tested, hence the hiring of Team Warrior and their reputation to watch over it. Rio’s none to pleased about all of this, and even less so when terrorists take over and force down the transport. The mysterious purple haired woman is involved again, as the group she’s a part of wants to acquire this tank. So it’s down into the desert as they attempt to retrieve. The amusing part is that the tank is
intelligent, it also has some sense of hormones, as it does all it can to protect Rio as the two are chased by the terrorists and deal with the various things that come up along the way.
These episodes were quite a bit of fun to watch, but I’m not really sure where it’s all going to end, and expect the final volume to either really provide a lot more information or just go and provide more fun and fanservice and forsake much of the concept of storytelling.
Japanese Language,English Language,English Subtitles,Clean opening and closing animation,Production sketches,A Burn Up Excess trailer,Jiggle Counter
Toshiba TW40X81 40" HDTV, Panasonic RP-82 Progressive Scan codefree DVD player, Sony STR-DE835 DD/DTS receiver, Monster component cable and Sony speakers.