Mania Grade: C-
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- Audio Rating: B
- Video Rating: B
- Packaging Rating: B
- Menus Rating: B
- Extras Rating: N/A
- Age Rating: 18 & Up
- Region: 1 - North America
- Released By: JapanAnime
- MSRP: 24.98
- Running time: 60
- Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
- Disc Resolution: 480i/p (mixed/unknown)
- Disc Encoding: MPEG-2
- Series: Cage
By Chris Beveridge
April 10, 2007
Release Date: March 30, 2007
What They Say
This hot original manga is authored and written by the infamous mind of Uzuki Nakamura, who's already renowned world wide for his achievement in realistic yet perverse animes. This new anime, "Cage" will definitely surprise and shock all of you in so many ways.
Cage Chapter 1: Sakimi Endo has finally become Takuya Kakizaki's girlfriend. She thought this happiness would last forever, but something's wrong. Her perfect dreams shattered when she was betrayed by her boyfriend and now she has an incredible amount of debt on her. Not being able to pay this off, she's now forced to become a sex slave to countless strangers in order to pay off the debt. Her life switched instantly from heaven to hell in a blink of an eye! Just when she thought her life is in despair forever, she receives one mysterious mail. This mysterious mail guides her the way she can get out of this nightmare. And of course, she had her worries and doubt at first, but this was the only hope she has been waiting for. So she heads for the club named "Canary" which was written on the mail. When she arrived, the one who was waiting for her behind the door was the owner of the club "Canary", Amamiya.
Cage Chapter 2: In this chapter, Sakimi Endo becomes very close with Mana Fujido. A strong friendship is bonded between one another; however, their friendship will escalate into love. In this second chapter, there's a lot more cosplay, fetish, anal, and even double penetration; lots of great sex scenes and fetishes can be seen in a very high quality! This is definitely Hentai anime at its finest.The Review!
When Sakimi finds herself completely used by someone she had a crush on, her life spirals out of control as the debt racks up.Audio:
As is pretty much standard with JapanAnime releases, this disc only has one language track on it. The Japanese mix is presented in a 2.0 PCM mix which sounds good and has a nice depth to it but not much in terms of actual directionality. Similar to most other adult mixes, it comes across the best with the music but it is generally problem free. Dialogue is clean and clear throughout and we had no trouble with dropouts or distortions during regular playback.Video:
Originally released in 2003 and 2004, the transfer for this two episode OVA series is presented in its original full frame aspect ratio. In a lot of ways, this show doesn't have the heavy digital look to it that a lot of OVAs still retained at that time and seems a bit more traditional. The transfer for this is decent but it has a fair bit of noise in the backgrounds and aliasing during some of the busier scenes. With the way so many JapanAnime titles look so clean, this one feels like it's a notch or two below their usual standards. It's not a bad looking transfer but it doesn't have the firm feel in the colors as their others. Amusingly, even though the show itself is uncensored, the ending sequences with the scenes from the show are censored with mosaics.Packaging:
The cover design goes for simple but effective as it provides a very nice looking shot of the two lead girls, one in her school uniform no less, in a dank dungeon with very pretty feathers falling around them. The logo takes up a decent bit of space as does the text about the runtime and its origins. Add in the logos and the cover is a fairly busy one that detracts a bit from the attractiveness of the artwork. The back cover works nicely as it uses a black background from which the character artwork blends well. The summary is alongside it which gives it a nice bit of shading while below are a couple of shots from the show. Add in the production information and a solid technical grid and it's a very good looking design. I am amused that there are multiple mentions outside of the technical grid to highlight that this disc has 60 minutes on it, since it differs from the majority of JapanAnime's releases. As usual, no insert is included nor is there a reversible cover.Menu:
The menu layout utilizes the character artwork from both the front cover and back cover to good effect as they blend well. The character artwork from the front cover looks very good here with vibrant colors nd clean lines while the back cover artwork is just right for blending into the background. The logo takes up a good chunk of space just like the front cover and the navigation strip is simple but effective. The disc defaults to just Japanese language with no subtitles though which is unusual since it's a subtitled only release. Access times are nice and fast and it was easy to get around.Extras:
(please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
Previously released by JapanX under the Hustler Video label, JapanAnime has given the title a new life with this edition. We had skipped a number of JapanX's initial releases due to the watermarks on them so we never saw Cage before now. This new release mirrors the original in terms of runtime and content though I'm going to guess that it's a bit more cleaned up in terms of subtitling in comparison to other early JapanX releases.
Cage is, obviously, a pure and simple domination and control kind of show. The series revolves high school student Sakimi Endo, a young woman who has a big crush on one of the hotter guys in the school. She's a fairly typical girl in that she's pretty trusting which means when he talks to her for a few minutes she ignores everything else she has going on. He's able to take advantage of this by not only taking advantage of her but also her student ID. Without thinking, she lets him use it to get something but he has also pilfered it for another use. While she's in a post-coital bliss mode, he's out there racking up huge sums of debt in her name. Before she knows it, she's responsible for three million yen in debt.
With all of this debt, Sakimi finds herself caught up in a series of sexual situations where she's basically just whoring to pay it back. She's fighting against the situation but it just seems to dominate her completely, leaving her hopeless and just going through the motions. The only beacon of light in this new world for her is another woman in the same situation named Mana. The quiet blonde gives her small bits of hope as someone in a similar situation but not much else. Between the two of them, they're subjected to quite a few sequences where they are completely dominated and controlled. While Sakimi tries to resist, Mana is completely limp to their demands. This makes up the bulk of the show until things begin to change as they must at the end of the second episode.
Like many titles of this nature, the leads in Sakimi and Mana have some good designs to them though they certainly aren't similar. They're well animated for the actual sex sequences though there is a fair bit of repetitive motions used. The bad looking side to the designs comes with the male characters as most of them are just ugly or disturbing, something which is only made worse by the comments they make. The design of the show in general is pretty good though for what it is as most of the scenes are just interiors that are nondescript. There's a bit more variety early on when Sakimi isn't confined which is well done though.In Summary:
Cage is the kind of title that I'm not really the audience for. There are plenty of those but there are some that can break those barriers and prove to be interesting enough. Unfortunately this wasn't one of them though. It is a competent production and the release by JapanAnime is pretty solid for the most part. It's a good looking disc with some attractive characters and a fairly self contained plot for what little plot there really is. Fans of the show are likely getting a better version with this release than the old JapanX one though it's hard to say whether it's worth the upgrade. Cage is filled with pretty much nothing but non-consensual scenes where the women have little to say about their situation.
Japanese 2.0 PCM Language,English Subtitles
Panasonic PT50LC13 50" LCD RP HDTV, Sony PlayStation3 Blu-ray player via HDMI -> DVI set to 480p, Sony STR-DE835 DD/DTS receiver, Monster component cable and Panasonic SB-TP20S Multi-Channel Speaker System With 100-Watt Subwoofer.