Burst Angel Vol. #3 (of 6) (Mania.com)
Review Date: Thursday, September 06, 2007
Release Date: Tuesday, September 11, 2007
What They Say
Following the announcement of Sei's arranged marriage to a member of a rival faction, the veil drops on years of old rivalries. If you think an arranged marriage won't sit well with Sei, well, you can only imagine what Amy feels like when a hacker gets his fingers into Amy's computer. It's only a matter of time before things turn violent.
Meanwhile, terrorists hijack a train and a giant bug is unleashed upon the city. All in a day's work for Jo. But has even Jo met her match in Ms. Takane Katsu, an elite law dog from Osaka? These two have more in common than they realize...RAPT. As RAPT sinks its teeth deeper into Tokyo, it begins to cast its eye towards Osaka. Will the city of Osaka crumble under the iron fist of RAPT?
With a change of venue for this volume from Tokyo to Osaka we have a new breed of evil arising; but can Jo stop it without being arrested herself?
For this viewing session I began with the 5.1 Japanese track. The music is constant as well as the continual gunfire and explosions makes great us of the surround sound. I also listened to FUNimation's English dub too to listen to their 5.1 as well. Awesome rear speaker explosions, especially during the Django/Gigantes fight, to go along with sound language from the front speakers making for a solid 5.1 on both tracks.
Burst Angel is one of the latest Gonzo series airing in Spring of 2004 so the transfer is 16:9 widescreen. Animation is sharp and crisp with beautiful combination of hand drawn and computer like most Gonzo shows. There is no bleeding in the animation making the background scenery and the characters come out vibrant and lifelike. Once again exceptional backdrops for the series, and this is accentuated by the change of scenery in this volume for more gorgeous eye candy.
FUNimation goes back to the clear keepcases which they have used for Kiddy Grade and Fullmetal Alchemist. It contains reversible covers with first cover containing a picture of Jo with her arm slung over Meg's shoulder while she points a revolver straight ahead on a bullet laden red wall and reverse is seductive rather plain picture of Amy at her computer terminal. The Burst Angel logo is in the bottom with the disc title in small, white writing to the right of it. The back is dark: Black and yellow with Amy looking over towards you as she lies on her stomach with splattering of screen caps.
This volume also includes a fourteen page booklet. There is a single character file to start the book focusing on Takane. There is a page of mechanical files, one page of costumes, as well as three pages of guest files for the four episodes. Finally there is a two page art file of the two locations for volume two.
In the upper left corner is the original kanji of Bakuretsu Tenshi in orange with teal English lettering of Burst Angel below it. The menu is a red shading on a black background with Amy with a yellowish tint looking over her right shoulder. In the bottom right corner is round picture of Amy and Meg from episode 10. Next to three cut out pictures of Jo's eyes is the options to play all, episode, audio and extras in white writing with Jo's tattoo as the curser.
More zaniness from Japanese actresses of Meg and Jo in three more Baku-Ten radio segments. There is four FUNimation trailers on this disc: DBZ movie 11: Bio Broly, Burst Angel, Blue Gender, Case Close & Fullmetal Alchemist. The commentary is on episode ten: Uncharted Cyberspace featuring Christopher Bevins, Alison Retzloff and Greg Aryes. We also get textless songs for the opening Loosey by the Stripes as well as both the original Japanese closing of Under the Sky by Cloudica and a new FUNimation English version. Also, much to my chagrin, Mr. Stain returns with another abysmal segment.
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers) The first episode on this volume is a stand alone that focuses on Sei going to visit her grandfather, accompanied by Amy and Meg in full kimonos. We see that there is two family artifacts that are protected by each of the two underworld families, and if the two are united they are the undisputed head of both families. There is a double cross and Sei is kidnapped, but Meg's inner power is released and she kicks some serious butt for a change. Jo, shows up as well, not allowing the villain to escape by supplying a tad of firepower. In the odd twist of Meg being worthwhile seemed to be out of place in the overall feel of the series.
The second one shot episode shifts from Sei being the focal point to Amy as she goes to cyber city to buy some odds and ends she need. The episode begins with the introduction to a new character Leo, Django's creator and mechanic, as he comes to fix his power beat up robot. Sei and Meg leave and Amy takes the chance to trick Kyohei into taking her into town. But, something is up and someone is tracking Amy, henceforth she must dive into cyberspace to find her tracker. But all that happens is the meet some futuristic robots, get scared, and run away crying. Sure, Amy and Kyohei get some individual attention but it is so pointless that it is a complete waste of twenty-four minutes.
The third episode makes a positive shifting of gears as Jo heads into Osaka and the change of scenery really jerks the series back on track after the debacle of the first two episodes. This arc begins with a train run by no one crashing head on with a passenger train causing a huge destruction; which turns out to be the work of a new super terrorist. Jo, is hired to go work at D.D.D. (Dream Danger Dynamite) a wrestling organization, to protect their biggest star Mega Rider. His opponent, Ultra Beast, mutates into a real monster and forcing Jo to show herself. The battle between the giant cockroach and Jo's blazing guns starts in the arena but quickly heads into sewers beneath. Jo pursues the monster and is about to finish it off when a cop on a motorcycle flies over her head and interrupts Jo's fight and arrests her simultaneously.
Takane is irate as she interrogates Jo, due to the body of the cockroach washing up in the river, she even gets mad enough to make a run at her with a staff which Jo blocks with a spoon! The chief shows up at Head Quarters to tell everyone that he is going for a meeting at RAPT, and we also find out that he is Takane's father. As Sei and Jo are leaving town the recognize the symbol on the back of a track heading to the fair grounds. Jo looks in the cab but the driver is already dead, and a sniper fires on Sei and Jo. Jo disables the sniper with a soda can, but then a giant robot shows up called Gigantes and takes off for Osaka after firing a blast to attempt to kill Sei and Jo. Jo and Django go to fight Gigantes and slow it down while Meg gives a little fire support from a nearby roof. Someone knocks Meg out as Jo is being throttled. As Takane looks up she is astonished to see the assitant director she cares for so much as the man holding Meg hostage in the iron pincher of Gigantes. There is a sign of plot as the two consecutive episode end this volume and third starting on the fourth volume will pick up where this one left off.
The first two episodes of this disc picked up on the same continuous episodic theme which did not add anything to the series. Sure, we got to see Meg in a whole new light, but it was a bit ridiculous and took away from the character development, but all is saved as she falls back into her usual role as hostage by the end of the volume. The Amy episode was boring and drug out as well. I realize that they must do episodes to show the other characters but the Sei and Amy episodes seemed forced and didn't go with the flow of the first two volumes. Fortunately, the third and fourth episodes actually turned it up a few notches on both plot and action. We get to meet a great character in Osaka's Takane who plans to give Jo a butt kicking run for her money. Yet, I feel like I'm watching a visual version of Herman's Hermit's "Henry the VIII", for as Meg continues to be abducted all I can hear in my head is, "second verse, same as the first." Although, the show seems to be heading into an overlying arc to finish out the series so all hope is not yet lost even with the bad filler episodes and usual dose of redundancies I have come to expect with Baku-Ten.
Japanese 5.1 Language,English 5.1 Language,English Subtitles,Textless Songs,Commentary by ADR Director Christopher Bevins; Alison Retzloff (Amy) & Greg Aryes (Kyohei)
Sony SAVA D9000 Dual Stack DTS w/ 5 Disc Changer in stack 1 and subwoofer in stack 2 Tv is Sony 57" widescreen rear-projection HDTV Model #KPD 57WS550
Mania Grade: B-
Audio Rating: A-
Video Rating: A-
Packaging Rating: B
Menus Rating: A-
Extras Rating: B
Age Rating: TV 14
Region: 1 - North America
Released By: FUNimation Entertainment, Ltd.
Running time: 100
Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1 Anamorphic Widescreen
Disc Resolution: 480i/p (mixed/unknown)
Disc Encoding: MPEG-2
Series: Burst Angel