Galaxy Angel AA Vol. #2 (of 4) (Mania.com)
Review Date: Friday, September 21, 2007
Release Date: Tuesday, August 21, 2007
What They Say
The Angel Brigade's zany quest for the Lost Technology continues as their adventures take them through high jinks and hilarity. As Ranpha uses her fortune-telling abilities to compete against Kokomo's Future Machine, the Angels discover that the Brigade "will be taken to another world." Things become serious when it looks like their predictions are coming true! As members of the crew begin to disappear one by one, Mint is the only one left to determine the person behind all of this.
And when the mystery is finally solved another one more serious arises! A love letter is left for Vanilla, threatening Normand's secret claim on her! And when she starts replying to them Normad may be forced to ask her out before she is stolen by another man.
Three more episodes of plain silly fun with the cast continually rebooting the continuity works in the shows favor as it's nothing but enjoyable.
Bandai Entertainment has continued with the dual language presentation for Galaxy Angel AA with a pair of 224 kbps stereo mixes. This isn't a show that really needs a stereo mix for the most part as it's a full sounding mix that doesn't have a lot of real directionality to it. It is a good mix in that it's clean and problem free but there isn't anything to really let it stand out. Dialogue is clean and clear throughout and we had no problems with dropouts or distortions during regular playback.
Originally airing in 2003, the transfer for this TV series is presented in its original full frame aspect ratio. Though a few years since its release the series continues to look very bright and colorful while maintaining a solid feel to it. Outside of a few noisy backgrounds here and there, often in the problematic dark blue colors, this is a good looking transfer that showcases the vibrancy of the series' design. Cross coloration is essentially absent and there's only a bit of aliasing going on during the various panning and zooming areas. Though Galaxy Angel isn't a show that stands out among some of the more vibrant ones out there, it looks very good here and pleasing on the eye.
The varying colors of keepcases among the Galaxy Angel seasons continue with this one as it comes in a bright green keepcase. The cover artwork itself is solid with a great looking piece that features Mint taking up most of the space while small sized versions of the other Angels are hanging all about on her. Lots of blues and whites combined with a sleek design in her uniform make this a good eye-catching piece. Even with a green keepcase. The back cover provides a few headshots worth of character artwork but is more focused on the text as it has a decent summary of the various stories found in this volume as well as a clean listing of the discs features and extras. The extras actually come up a bit short in not listing the concert pieces though. The episodes are broken down well to illustrate the titles of each of the half length pieces while the remainder is done up with the production information and the most basic technical information. No insert is included nor is there a reversible cover.
The menu design for the release is rather simple but not unexpected. With little more than a series of scattered headshots of the main girls on top of a multicolored background, it doesn't exactly excite as there isn't any animation to it or even any music. It's a decent enough looking menu but it feels pretty basic. Navigation is quick and easy however and access times are solid when moving about. We didn't have any issues with language selection both as the disc properly read our player's language presets and defaulted to Japanese with English language subtitles.
Not too surprising this late into the series but the extras are fairly standard. There's a pair of music clips featuring the voice actresses performing. Both are pretty short overall, especially after coming off the nearly hour long concert footage on Galaxy Angel Rune, but they're a good inclusion.
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
With the shift down to just three episodes for this volume, the pure silliness doesn't feel quite as strong as it did with the first volume. I think this works in the shows favor as taking in four episodes of Galaxy Angel at a time is a bit overkill for me. The three episodes here do their usual job of focusing on particular themes for each set of two stories and then basically just resetting the consequences so that it can carry on again. After all, if we went by the previous volume, Mint would still be in a tree for the next few thousand years.
The six half length stories on this volume are all pretty fun and run the gamut of the characters fairly well. Ranpha seems to get a bit more time but that's just because she tends to be the most outgoing of the characters and gains plenty of attention. Ranpha also manages to be in an episode that brings to life the term Space-a-cuda, something for which I can't stop laughing about. The opening story for her has her in a competition with a machine over predicting the future, something that goes so far as to put the entire planet at risk. It's fairly amusing in that it brings the little used secondary characters of the Perot brothers for some fun. Their personal quirks tend to conflict with that of the girls which leads to plenty of yelling and attempts at outdoing each other. With one of them being a mechanical and scientific genius, it doesnâ€™t take too long to escalate any situation.
Quite possibly my favorite episode on this release revolves around Vanilla which is fairly surprising. She's usually the quiet character who gets an appropriate line once in awhile but otherwise serves as the cute one who carries Normad around. To everyone's surprise, she starts getting some love letters which leads to phone calls and then to dates. Everyone has an opinion on how she should interact on the date or in any of the other situations and they tend to use Volcott's extensive shoujo library as their source material. There's a fun little twist to it and it's great to watch Normad get so upset at the idea of someone else being the focus of Vanilla's life. Normad in general is fun to watch as he's generally very biting in his remarks, especially when Vanilla casts him aside. Another episode has her dropping him in favor of a wooden doll and he's just aghast at the idea of it.
Forte manages to get a good episode to herself in which she's tasked with taking a planet destroying man to prison. With visions of a big powerful man that she can properly lust over in her mind, she finds that reality has again intruded. The criminal has been encased in rock for transport and since it's too big for the helijets to take him, she's been assigned to transport him over ground along with Malibu. The entire way there, Forte tries to come up with ways of freeing him so she can see if her vision is accurate and Malibu ends up dealing with the consequences. Forte's style in handling all of this is priceless as she's practically girlish in some ways in comparison to her normal demeanor.
Galaxy Angel is still very much a light and silly show but it does it in just the right way. With most comedy series by this point you have to wonder why they're still making it as the funny has gone away. Yet here, they seem to only manage to get better and sharper as they hone what works. These characters are so completely familiar now yet still fresh and new with the situations that they end up in that I can't help smiling for the majority of it and laughing a good deal more than I do with most other comedies. It's a guilty pleasure in a sense since it is so structured and basic but it works very well for me which results in a very enjoyable viewing experience.
Japanese 2.0 Language,English 2.0 Language,English Subtitles,Seiyuu Concert
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: B+
Audio Rating: B+
Video Rating: A-
Packaging Rating: B+
Menus Rating: B
Extras Rating: B-
Age Rating: 13 & Up
Region: 1 - North America
Released By: Bandai Entertainment
Running time: 75
Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
Disc Resolution: 480i/p (mixed/unknown)
Disc Encoding: MPEG-2
Series: Galaxy Angel