Dokkoida!? Box Set (of 1) (Mania.com)
Review Date: Tuesday, May 08, 2007
Release Date: Tuesday, July 18, 2006
What They Say
The Galaxy Federation Police (GFP) desperately wants to cover-up its personnel shortage with new mechanized power-suits. Suzuo, 19-years old, desperately needs a job. Tampopo needs an earthling to fit the prototype of her company's suit and declares Suzuo the perfect candidate! Strong competitors and the wacky A-class criminals fight against our hero in diapers, but they must not recognize each other out of costume or the test results will be a failure- but it's OK if they all live in the same apartment building to save money, right?
What do you get when you mix three alien class-A criminals fighting for their freedom, two humans fighting to prove who has the superior power suit, and one apartment building where they all live? Twelve episodes of delightfully wacky goodness.
For this review, I primarily watched the show in Japanese. The sound is in stereo and is nicely dynamic. The dialogue is very clear and is entirely without issues. Overall this is a solid mix. The English mix is equally balanced and dynamic.
The video is incredibly clear and vibrant for a show that originally aired in 2003. The colors are all distinct and vivid, with no color bleed over or artifacting. The show is very well represented in this transfer.
The set contains three full sized discs in a collectible box. The box is nice and solid with an image of the main characters floating in space. The front of the box has Dokkoida front and center with Tampopo, Neruloid Girl, Hyacinth and Edelweiss arranged around him. Dr. Marronflower and his insectoid spaceship dominate the back of the box and are surrounded by Kurika in robot form, Pierre in koala form and a screen showing the image of Mogumotokkuru and his assistant. The spine of the box shows Edelweiss' rubber ducky golem with the edge of Dokkoida's cape in his beak. The bottom of the box lists the set contents, but does not provide much in the way of technical specifications. The top of the box displays the logo for the show.
The artwork for each of the discs are character collages all centering around Dokkoida. Disc one has Dokkoida, Neruloid Girl and Tampopo striking action poses before an orange rising sun. The second disc is Dokkoida striking a pose with laser lights shooting out of his belt, with Tampopo in full color peeking out from behind him and all the remaining main characters arranged behind Dokkoida, each in a different jewel toned color. Disc Three has a moody Dokkoida with the shadowy and disgruntled looking faces of Dr. Marronflower, Neruloid Girl, Edelweiss, Hyacinth and Tampopo in the shadow of his cape.
The cases are made of clear plastic, and the cover inserts are reversible, with additional cover art from the Japanese disc releases. The reverse side of the cover inserts also feature two comic strips in the same humorous vein as the show. The discs each also have inserts that have nice artwork and fold out into mini posers. The back of each disc has some nice shots of the characters and neatly lists the episodes as well as all features and extras.
Each disc, in this limited edition version of the set, comes with an awesome iron on, allowing you to transform a t-shirt into either of Suzuo's everyday shirts. The iron ons are a chibi version of Dokkoida's face, a cute yellow bird, and the Dokkoida!? logo.
The menu for each disc is quite a treat. The menu is designed as a Dokkoida comic book, each disc has a unique cover image. The comic pages flip open to reveal the menu selections. The options are contained within the dialogue bubbles. Each main option selection is a different page of the comic, and the transitions are animations of the pages flipping. The artwork used in each panel is colorful and fun and ties in well with the theme of the show. Overall this is a great menu that is very fun to look at and navigate.
The discs in this collection contain the same extras as are available in the individually sold discs. The first disc extras are the standard; textless opening and endings. The making of the ending sequence documentaries that are the second disc are quite enjoyable and really make you appreciate the work that goes into the cool ending. The Psychic Lover concert on the third disc isn't a concert as much as it is a small venue live performance, though it is definitely a fun inclusion. Also included on disc three is the cosplay show. In the cosplay show we get several interesting shots of the official cosplay actresses; Melon, as Tampopo, and Shion Sagiri, as Hyacinth. Beyond the simple shots of the actresses posing as the characters, there are two brilliantly hilarious re-enactments with the actresses each edited into an actual scene from the show.
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
Dokkoida is set in the present, though the earth is apparently ignorant of the wider galaxy, which is populated by technologically advanced humanoid and non-humanoid aliens. The galaxy is overrun by crime due to a shortage of willing recruits, and so the Galaxy Federation Police (GFP) has turned to two companies to create power suits to fight crime. Unfortunately only one power suit will be used by the GFP, thus a competition is engineered to determine which suit is the best. The competition is set to take place on earth and pits notorious Class-A criminals against the two power suits.
Tampopo is a representative of one of the companies vying to supply the GFP with power suits and is searching for someone to take on the mantel of their power suit, called Dokkoida. She runs across Suzuo, who is down on his luck having recently lost his job due to the bad economy. Tampopo offers Suzuo the job of Dokkoida, but he rejects the offer thinking she is crazy.
Suzuo's rejection is the cue for Dr. Marronflower and his evil robots to strike. Neruloid Girl, the competitor suit arrives on the scene to deal with Dr. Marronflower and Tampopo is finally able to convince Suzuo to try on the power suit. Suzuo is no more skilled wearing the power suit than he is normally, so Tampopo has him engage the Alpha Waves of Zealousness. This keys the Dokkoida theme song, a brilliant parody of typical Japanese superhero show songs, to start playing. Suddenly Suzuo is filled with righteousness and is able to beat up Dr. Marronflower, though we later find out that the alpha waves were never equipped in the power suit, and Suzuo's actions were all from being pumped up by the theme song.
Suzuo agrees to continue being Dokkoida, especially once he learns that it comes with the perks of regular meals and a place to live. Tampopo leads Suzuo to Cosmos house, their new home and explains that she is now in disguise as his sister, Kosuzu. She also explains the details of the competition. The criminals will be granted their freedom if they can defeat the power suits and reveal the identities of their users. In order to win the competition, Dokkoida must defeat the criminals. Just as they are ready to enter the gates of Cosmos house, Suzuo and Tampopo/Kosuzu run into the other new residents, Dr. Marronflower with his robot Kurika, and Neruloid Girl.
Dr. Marronflower is not very successful in fighting both Neruloid Girl and Dokkoida, which leads Mogumotokkuru, the GFP administrator in charge of the competition, to send along two more class-A criminals. He selects the voluptuous Hyacinth, who attacks by whipping her slave Pierre until he assumes the shape of an animal, and Edelweiss, who comes from a sacred bloodline that can bring clay golems of any shape to life. However, as is expected in a show like this, neither Hyacinth nor Edelweiss are particularly good criminals. Pierre turns into useless animals, such as a koala, far more often than he turns into anything vicious. And Edelweiss' sculpting power is what you would expect of a child, leaving her with unitimidating teddy bear-like golems. Naturally both Hyacinth and Edelweiss also end up living at Cosmos house.
There are plenty ridiculous battles held between the characters, and when they aren't battling each other they engage in all manner of hijinx as residents of Cosmos house. One particularly hot summer, while in the midst of battling one another, everyone agrees it is too hot to fight. A new swimming pool has opened in town that they all want to try, but by combining their money there is only enough to cover one entrance fee. Everyone decides to race to the pool, the winner will be the only one to enter. However, this plan is foiled when Neruloid Girl crashes into the pool forcing everyone to make their way to the local pool.
The series continues along this vein, with bouts of Hyacinth and Edelweiss trying to win over Suzuo with sisterly love and Mogumokkuru's hilarious bid to raise awareness of the power suit competition by turning it into a reality TV show. However, events finally come to a head as we discover that the sinister Senator Woodpecker has engineered the competition as a cover-up for the creation of the fully automated Osabaki M5 drones. The power suit competition is cancelled, the criminals are all shipped back to a penal colony, and Tampopo is forced to erase Suzuo's memories. However, once in action it turns out that the Osabaki M5s can be hacked and controlled by non-GFP forces. Dokkoida, Neruloid Girl, Dr. Marronflower, Hyacinth and Edelweiss all join forces to destroy the factory that manufactures the Osabaki M5s. Once the battle is won, the criminals are all granted their freedom and everyone returns to live together at Cosmos house.
There are a few episodes that deviate from the standard comedic routine and fall a bit flat as a result. The story in which Suzuo is charged with protecting a runaway galactic superstar, who is pursuing Dr. Marronflower, is lackluster and devoid of the humor so resplendent in other episodes. Luckily, these missteps are few and far between.
Dokkoida at first seems like a typical action hero comedy, replete with a hapless hero, an evil scientist and several lovely ladies. And though the show certainly is all of those things, it is quite a bit more. Dokkoida manages to keep your sides in stitches while showing what it really means to be a hero and the strength of the bonds of friendship.
Dokkoida!? is parody of classic Japanese superheroes, and is at its best when being utterly ridiculous. The strong parody and nearly non-stop humor manage to avoid being over the top and certainly kept me laughing. Dokkoida is a comedic romp that really delivers and shouldn't be missed.
Japanese 2.0 Language,English 2.0 Language,English Subtitles,Textless Opening,Textless Ending,Promotional Clip,Making of Ending, Part 1,Making of Ending, Part 2,Psychic Lover Concert,Cosplay Show
Review Equipment: Samsung HLN5065WX 50" DLP HDTV, Sony DVP-NS975V Progressive Scan Up Converting DVD player, Pioneer Elite VSX-81TXV DD/DTS receiver, HDMI cable, JBL Multi-Channel Speaker System with 100-Watt Subwoofer.
Mania Grade: B+
Audio Rating: B
Video Rating: A-
Packaging Rating: A
Menus Rating: A
Extras Rating: B+
Age Rating: 13 & Up
Region: 1 - North America
Released By: Geneon Entertainment (USA), Inc.
Running time: 300
Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
Disc Resolution: 480i/p (mixed/unknown)
Disc Encoding: MPEG-2