Immorals, The (of 1) (Mania.com)

By:Chris Beveridge
Review Date: Friday, May 15, 2009
Release Date: Tuesday, March 24, 2009

In a mansion full of gorgeous women, Tatsuya doesn’t need much encouragement to dominate those there to fulfill his mission.

What They Say
When a crooked politician dies, his nine wives expect to get his large inheritance. But the money ends up going to his daughters instead. This makes his youngest wife jealous and angry. So she teams up with a young, especially well-endowed man whose father has fallen ill after the politician ruined his career. Together, they use the young man's ample gift to manipulate the daughters into relinquishing their fortune.

The Review!
Audio:
The Immorals features a pretty standard stereo mix to it that’s given the bilingual treatment. Each language track has the usual 192kbps encoding to it and it certainly services the material well, but it’s not something that stands out strongly. The bulk of the show is either dialogue or mood sounds and they’re essentially center channel driven, giving it a full feel overall without much placement. Dialogue is clean and clear throughout and we didn’t have any problems with dropouts or distortions during regular playback.

Video:
Originally released in 2006, the transfer for this two episode OVA series is presented in its original full frame aspect ratio. The Immorals features a really strong piece of animation overall with some great colors and character designs and the transfer here shines with it. There is some noise in a few backgrounds here and there, but it’s minimal overall. There’s a lot of rich colors to this at times and a lot of variety to rooms and outfits which has it feeling like a quality release from the start and the transfer captures that. This is a very solid looking adult release.

Packaging:
The cover design for this release is really interesting and somewhat unusual in how it’s broken down. The front cover has the four main women here, all wearing white, but it’s done with a letterbox angle to it that obscures them along the bottom a little bit and pushes a bit more of the sexuality in a way that I can’t quite put my finger on. The main appeal here however is the character designs and they look fairly close to this in the show itself. It’s very seductive yet simple in its approach. The back cover is a bit more colorful with the four women laid out differently and with far less on them. With the red background and the girls all showing a lot of skin, it’s very hot looking. There’s a number of strategically placed shots from the show to obscure most things but that only pushes the eroticism more. The remainder is given over to the usual production redits and a clean technical grid.

Menu:
The menu design uses the same artwork as the back cover, expanded slightly, with a bit of instrumental music tied along to it. Similar to other Kitty Media titles, it’s not exactly strong with what it does but it looks good and it sets the mood just right for what’s to come. Submenus load quickly and with little else on the release outside of a selection of trailers, getting around is easy and problem free. The disc unfortunately didn’t read our players’ language presets properly and defaulted to English language with no subtitles.

Extras:
None.

Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
Immorals, a two part OVA series, brings out the character designs of Takuya Matsumoto and I’m very glad to see that. Sometimes the quality of the character designs and a solid piece of animation can overcome other issues and the Immorals is just such a title. The show has some faults to it to be sure, but the things it does right outweighs that in a number of ways. The story here is almost painfully simple, but that just means we get more time for the actual action and character interaction.

The premise of the Immorals revolves around a governor’s mansion where the governor has died at the ripe old age of eighty-eight. His reign as governor in this modern age was laced with rumors and mysteries as he had many daughters over the years that are all different. He was married again when he died and that’s left some concern about how things will now progress with the position of governor. The wife, Sumire, has brought in the son of a former employee named Tatsuya to do her bidding. With some mild coercion and a sweet smile, Sumire has convinced Tatsuya to take advantage of all of the governor’s daughters so he can control them for her, thereby making sure she retains proper control of the mansion and all that it entails.

It’s from here that the show delves into his slow conquest of all the women. Each of them are different and his approach is different. The first episode deals with two of the sisters who are aware of what he’s doing but can’t resist him because of how he goes about it. The second sister, in a particularly ravishing red floor length dress, finds herself being blackmailed by him as he uses photos of her with the maid to get what he wants. She’d been abused by the governor and she hates me so she’s trying to get away from the idea by forcing herself to be with women. To make sure he really gets his way, he turns the maid over to his side first since she’s not interested in women but she’s not exactly hot for Tatsuya either as she’s being forced into all of it.

Where the show gets a little wonky is in the second episode where they recap a good part of the first episode. This is generally bad, especially with the amount they cover, but they change it up a little by doing it with new animation and showing it from different angles. I rather liked this since it changes the dialogue slightly as well and it does give me more of the two women I found to be the most attractive. After that, Tatsuya begins to work down the other women and we see why he’s so amenable to doing all of this during a flashback that explains everything in a rather simple and complete manner, so long as you don’t really look for real world details. The remaining sisters aren’t all that interesting, and they introduce a mild bit of scat into it, but they do tackle Sumire as well as the story reaches its climax with Tatsuya performing as instructed.

While the story is weak and simple, the character designs and the overall visual design is very solid. I really found the character designs to be highly appealing overall, though some of them do run with the overly large breasts. They balance that out with some that are less which helps but it’s all complemented by the great costume designs and the settings. The actual action scenes are just as well done, choreographed well and done in a way that is quite erotic and explicit enough. This may be a case of style over substance, but it’s a genre where it does work out well and it’s hard to complain about it.

In Summary:
It’s empty when it comes to plot and story, but Immorals ranks high when it comes to eroticism and style. Great character designs, lush and intriguing settings and a series of scenes that really do a great job of being different from each other while still working with a central theme. The Immorals is that kind of show where if you’re not looking for plot but rather for a show that excites and titillates, it succeeds on those levels. I feel like I’m in the awkward position of defending an empty show, but it’s a show that achieves what it sets out to do and it does it with great style. I can’t help but recommend this as it was exactly what I was looking for, a show that doesn’t come by all that often with these kinds of designs and sexiness.

Features
Japanese 2.0 Language, English 2.0 Language, English Subtitles

Review Equipment

Sony KDS-R70XBR2 70" LCoS 1080P HDTV, Sony PlayStation3 Blu-ray player via HDMI set to 1080p, Onkyo TX-SR605 Receiver and Panasonic SB-TP20S Multi-Channel Speaker System With 100-Watt Subwoofer.



Mania Grade: A-
Audio Rating: B+
Video Rating: A-
Packaging Rating: B+
Menus Rating: B
Extras Rating: N/A
Age Rating: 18 and Up
Region: 1 - North America
Released By: Kitty Media
MSRP: 29.99
Running time: 60
Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
Disc Resolution: 480i/p
Disc Encoding: MPEG-2
Series: Immorals, The