Chrono Crusade Vol. #3 - Mania.com



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Mania Grade: B+

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Info:

  • Audio Rating: B+
  • Video Rating: A
  • Packaging Rating: A
  • Menus Rating: B+
  • Extras Rating: A
  • Age Rating: 12 & Up
  • Region: 2 - Europe
  • Released By: ADV Films UK
  • MSRP: £19.99
  • Running time: 100
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Disc Resolution: 480i/p (mixed/unknown)
  • Disc Encoding: MPEG-2
  • Series: Chrono Crusade

Chrono Crusade Vol. #3

By Kim Wolstenholme     July 21, 2005
Release Date: July 18, 2005


Chrono Crusade Vol. #3
© ADV Films UK


What They Say
The secret of Rosette and Chrono’s soul bond is unveiled, Azmaria’s initiation into the Order continues, and an unholy beast stalks the streets of the city. As the forces of darkness continue their war against humankind, the depth to which the human soul can be corrupted becomes the catalyst for a nightmarish series of events. The horns of a devil take root in a child of God, a Devil’s bargain is joined and Aion’s monstrous plot to conquer heaven itself advances one step closer to fruition in the spell binding third volume of Chrono Crusade.

The Review!
The third volume of Chrono Crusade takes a bit of a breather from all the action and goes back to the time when Rosette and Chrono first met.

Audio:

I watched the show alternating between both of the audio tracks provided on the disk. The Japanese Stereo track is perfectly functional with all dialogue and sound effects coming from the front sound stage. There are a couple of directional sound effects that use the left and right speakers but not too many. The English 5.1 track utilises all of the surround speakers and there is some good directionality with both dialogue and sound effects. Both tracks are perfectly clear and I noticed no dropouts or distortion.

Video:

Chrono Crusade is presented on disk in its original aspect ratio of 1:33.1 and I didn’t notice any major problems with the transfer. The colours used throughout the show came across well and there is a nice distinction between the daytime and nighttime scenes. Colours are noticeably brighter and more vibrant during the day and these same colours are given a more muted appearance at night.

Subtitles were in the usual ADV yellow font and I noticed no grammar or spelling mistakes.

Packaging:

The cover for the third volume has a montage depicting Rosette, Chrono and Azmaria and the inclusion of Azmaria on this cover makes it a lot more colourful than the previous two. The back cover follows the same layout as the previous volumes, with the squat cross containing volume information and screen shots, with the usual ADV information grid displayed on the bottom of the cover.

As with the previous two volumes, volume three comes with another reversible cover. This alternate cover has a picture of Rosette and Chrono from back when they first met.

Menu:

The menu continues with the cross theme, with another cross taking up the centre of the main menu which displays scenes from the show. The menu options are in separate boxes around the outside of the screen, and the cursor is also displayed as a cross. All the menus are accompanied by music from the show and all access times are quick.

Extras:

As with the previous two volumes the extras start with Azmaria’s Extra Classes, this time Azmaria provides more information on Satella and her powers as well as devil worshipers. Following this there are the staple clean opening and closing animation, the Chrono Crusade Chronicle and some more production sketches.

A commentary for episode 10 is next up, this time Matt Greenfield is joined by Chris Patton who voices Joshua (both young and old). This is quite an interesting commentary and goes into more detail about the problems that voice actors can face when recording a show. The Chrono Crusade slang section lists all the slang words and phrases that you might hear when listening to the English dub with their translation. The 1920s came with its own set of slang words and these have been included in the dub where appropriate, if you read through them all (there are about 6 pages) it’s quite surprising how many are still in use today. ADV Previews round off the extras with a nice mix of old and new previews.

Content: (please note that content portions of a review will contain spoilers)

After the second enjoyable volume I was thinking that it was probably about time for the show to start giving us some more back-story now that the central characters are pretty much established. The first two episodes on volume 3 do exactly that.

The Order has finally received some information concerning the whereabouts of Joshua, although they are not sure whether or not the information is totally accurate. With this new information Father Remington and Sister Kate decide that it’s time to let Rosette start her search for Joshua in the hopes that she can rescue Joshua from Aion’s clutches. Before starting their search Rosette and Chrono decide to visit the place the place where their relationship began – the Seventh Bell orphanage.

Taking Azmaria along with them, Rosette and Chrono go to the orphanage, but it’s not entirely what you’d expect. The actual orphanage is sealed up inside a huge building, and appears to have been partially destroyed. Much more disturbing are the people that surround the building who appear to have been frozen with all of them having anguished looks on their faces. Who or what could have caused such a thing? Well we’re about to find out.

4 years ago, Rosette and Joshua both lived at the orphanage, where, as a result of his powers as an apostle Joshua is sick most of the time. On the days when Joshua is feeling OK they explore the grounds of the orphanage together and dream of becoming world famous explorers. One day when exploring the grounds as a means of avoiding Father Remington, they fall down into a series of hidden catacombs. Coming to a large door Joshua opens it and there they find Chrono sitting in the tomb of Mary Magdalene. After some initial reluctance on the part of Chrono the three of them become firm friends, with Chrono telling Joshua and Rosette all about his antics as a devil, stories that both of them lap up. This idyllic friendship is not going to last for long though, Father Remington has plans to take Joshua to the Order, something that Rosette is not keen on, and Aion has his own plans for Joshua.

Joshua’s gift as an Apostle is the ability to heal people, but this gift also has a downside, Joshua’s health is deteriorating and he is unable to heal himself. Both Aion and Father Remington are aware of Joshua’s failing health, with Father Remington deciding that the best place for Joshua to recoup his strength would be at the Order. During a relapse Joshua agrees to go to the Order, hoping that by doing this he will be less of a burden on his sister. Before he can go to the Order though Aion appears and seduces Joshua with tales of how he can become strong if he were to accept a gift of devil horns from him.

The horns that Aion is offering Joshua actually belonged to Chrono. and were removed by Aion many years ago. Aion also offers Chrono his horns back on the condition that he joins him again, but Chrono refuses the offer. Joshua, however, accepts the horns but this comes with it’s own set of consequences. Joshua is unable to control the power that the horns give him and as a result freezes the orphanage and it’s inhabitants in time.

Devils horns are the source of their power, as they allow devils to absorb Astral in turn giving them unlimited power. Without his horns Chrono is unable to take on his devil form for long periods of time and is unable to stop Joshua’s destruction of the orphanage. The only way for Chrono to become powerful again without his horns is to take a human contractor whose energy he can channel thus reducing their life span. Rosette realises that the only way to stop Joshua is to become Chrono’s contractor and as a result of this the bond between the two of them is forged.

We’ve not really seen much of Joshua up until now; he’s been a background presence but someone that is important to the overall story. These episodes give more flesh to the character and it’s easy to see how he managed to get into his current position. Joshua was very aware of the potential burden he was to his sister, and thought that by going to the Order he could relieve Rosette from the ever constant worry about his health. Aion worked on this aspect of Joshua’s character by tempting him with the potential to become even stronger than he’d ever imagined. Unfortunately Joshua succumbed to this temptation, but was unable to control the abilities that he developed when accepting Chrono’s horns.

Chrono and Aion’s relationship is yet to be explored in greater depth, but we’re given some hints during the episodes on this disk especially about Chrono’s past. He was an all powerful devil before Aion removed his horns, killing many of his own kind so it’s maybe not surprising that he’s continued doing a similar thing for the Order.

The next episode sees us back in ‘devil of the week’ mode, but it’s a welcome return after the emotional content of the first two episodes. A fiery beast with bright blue eyes has been summoned to dispatch all the Mafioso in New York and so far it’s been doing its job pretty effectively, until Rosette and Satella decide to take it on. As with some of the previous episodes this episodes shows Rosette and Satella both going about the same goal in different ways, although by the end of the episode they appear to be reluctantly working together as quite an effective team.

The final episode on this disk revolves around Azmaria and lightens the overall atmosphere of the disk considerably, even if it probably is one of the weakest episodes so far. Christmas is coming and Rosette and Chrono find out that Azmaria has never really had the opportunity to celebrate Christmas due to the situations she’s found herself in. When the girls at the Order find out about this, everyone resolves to give Azmaria a Christmas to remember. This is a cute episode, although it felt a bit strange watching a Christmas episode in the middle of summer. It’s quite fun to watch even if it is a bit schmaltzy, but Chrono in a reindeer suit is worth seeing.

In summary-

The third volume of Chrono Crusade has provided the viewer with the all-important information about the bond that exists between Rosette and Chrono. Providing the backstory for Joshua, Rosette and Chrono has helped to put some more things into perspective and has clarified relationships. So far none of the characters in Chrono Crusade have had an easy ride, but it’s certain that things are going to get a whole lot worse before they get better.

Features
Japanese Language 2.0,English Language 5.1,English Subtitles,Azmaria’s Extra Classes,Episode Commentary with Matt Greenfield and Chris Patton,Chrono Crusade Slang,Background information for Characters and Settings,Production Sketches,Clean Closing and Opening Animation

Review Equipment
Panasonic 42” Plasma, Arcam 88+ Prog Scan DVD Player, Kef Egg 7.1 Speaker system with a Ruark log sub. Denon 3802 amplifier.

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