Cool Devices Anniversary Edition Vol. #2 -

Anime/Manga Reviews

Mania Grade: C-

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  • Audio Rating: B+
  • Video Rating: B
  • Packaging Rating: B
  • Menus Rating: B-
  • Extras Rating: C+
  • Age Rating: 18 & Up
  • Region: 1 - North America
  • Released By: Critical Mass Video
  • MSRP: 29.98
  • Running time: 70
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Disc Resolution: 480i/p (mixed/unknown)
  • Disc Encoding: MPEG-2
  • Series: Cool Devices

Cool Devices Anniversary Edition Vol. #2

By Chris Beveridge     February 23, 2005
Release Date: March 29, 2005

Cool Devices Anniversary Edition Vol. #2
© Critical Mass Video

What They Say
COOL DEVICES, a series that redefined adult anime in the US and became one of the best selling hentai titles ever, has returned in a brand new DIGITALLY REMASTERED 10th Anniversary Edition! Now, for the very first time, this hentai masterpiece is FINALLY AVAILABLE IN ENGLISH!

Don't say we didn't warn you!

Enter a world where darkest desires and deepest hatreds are intertwined to create the most exquisite pleasure imaginable.

On a sleepy little island best friends Kirei and Rui are enjoying the sunshine, but their outrageous curves and scantily clad bodies have attracted the attention of a vicious gang of rapists. Now, captive to the gang's every lustful desire, the two friends are about to discover just how hot the tropics can be...

S&M Queen Saki loves nothing better than breaking in innocent women for her bondage master's pleasure. Saki's latest target? A quiet and sexually inexperienced young lady named Marino Ohkura. Saki and her master will drag the unwilling Marino into the world of S&M through intensive training in obedience and erotic techniques. Meanwhile, Saki secretly pines for the exquisite torture she endured at her old master's hands. Will anyone ever be able to satisfy her as he did?

Contains: Operation 04: Kirei Operation 05: Seek I - Slave Girl Marino Operation 06: Seek II - S&M Queen Saki

The Review!
What was once considered some of the nastiest hentai you could find out there, Cool Devices returns for its 10th anniversary with three more of the original operations.

For our primary viewing session, we listened to this series in its new English language dub track. As the original release was Japanese language only, Critical Mass went and dubbed the series for this tenth anniversary release. The mix is pretty standard hentai material though which is a fairly basic stereo mix that's generally center channel based. Dialogue is clean and clear throughout and there's a good range of low to medium-high coming through here. We didn't have any problems with dropouts or distortions during regular playback.

Originally released back in 1995, the transfer for these OVA episodes are presented in their original full frame aspect ratio. Much like a lot of regular and hentai releases of that time, there are elements to it that haven't held up as well and are visible here such as some scratches, the roughness in some of the animation and a bit of aliasing. But for the most part it's a decent looking print and leap years ahead of the prior release which was basically a VHS port to DVD. The transfer is clean and free of the dirt and dust problems from what we could see and the colors look solid even if not terribly vibrant. Cross coloration is virtually non-existent and overall it's a good looking transfer considering the age and source.

With this volume being more oriented towards the S&M and bondage stuff as well as domination in general, this cover works well to keep it in theme with the woman in chains and some very big stiletto heels pushing down on her backside. The character art itself is decent though these episodes have some of my least favorite designs. The back cover goes for the same style with a neon box that keeps a couple of shots from the show and some other artwork together in a nice layout while below it is the summary of the shows premise and its features. Like many other hentai releases, no insert is included in this release.

The main menu is laid out like the front cover artwork except that the menu selections are lined along the right and there's a bit of driving porn music going along to it. It's a neat looking menu though if you stare at it for too long the blue really begins to blur and merge together. Access times are nice and fast and the navigation is easy and problem free. The disc correctly read our players' language presets as well. This release earns an extra kudos for having the menu loop for over two minutes so I hand have most of the song to play.

The only included extra in this release is a manual art gallery.

Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
As we talked about some of the past importance of this release and its varied release history, we get to focus a bit more on the show itself this time though it comes with a volume whose episodes tend to veer into territory that I don't particularly care for, which always makes reviewing fun. At least I'm up front and honest about it but still try to get the gist of what it's all about across, right? In a way, watching these episodes with their bondage and S&M material is amusing since it feels nostalgic almost like how you'd feel nostalgic for old porn from the black and white era. Even as bad as it gets, it pales compared to what's done today in visual terms and in the content itself.

The opening episode is one that for a variety of reasons has been fairly laughable for quite some time, the Butterfly Episode. A couple of women find themselves playing tourist on an island as they rented a boat and wanted to check things out. To their surprise, not many people seem to be actually using the island as a tourist place. In fact, they're the only ones there until they realize they're being watched by a group of thuglies in the in the jungle. The two are quickly captured and the leader of the thugs has them laid out so that he can spread some kind of liquid on them, a liquid that ends up turning them into mindless zombies who just want to get off over and over. The two are different states of dealing with this as they try to escape from the men and find freedom.

The story has always gotten grief for its butterfly lotion idea but also for the character designs of the women whose breasts aren't quite as massive as they once seemed in comparison to more recent shows. But it's not just the massive mammaries themselves that are the problem it's combined with the near-literal stick figure designs of the bodies and the overall unattractiveness of the characters. Rui in particular is someone you'd kick out of bed for getting crumbs in there.

The rest of the disc is filled out with the two episode storyline called SEEK. This is another of the titles that definitely qualified as hardcore some time ago as it follows a S&M mistress named Saki. Her main goal in her life is pleasing her master and the way she does so is by acquiring beautiful young women and putting them through her training courses so that they serve him completely and do everything that he requests of them. Over the two episodes we see a couple of her latest acquisitions for her master and some of her more experienced ones as they go through the training process, from basic stuff like chains and whips to slightly more advanced material like candle wax. Full body enemas come later on but they're in there as well so most of the basics are definitely covered.

The two parter is fairly decent with this material and there's some fun with masks and costumes that's not "cosplay" related in a sense but puts about that air of mystery to it. The extended sequence in the second episode with the party provides some amusing moments as well particularly as one of the new girls is chased outside of the mansion by dogs until she's got almost nothing on and the excitement is more than she can bear. But in the end, this kind of material in this format does nothing for me so other than a few interesting sequences that are almost quaint at times, it's sort of a wash.

In Summary:
As the 10th anniversary release continues it's proving just how much really can change in ten years, especially in terms of what's considered hardcore and fetish-worthy. This volume provides a single story show and a two-part story as well and gives its nod to a particular segment of the audience with its S&M and bondage themes as well as generally dominating positions. These aren't among my favorites from the series though so this volume didn't hold my attention all that well or do much for me in general.

Japanese 2.0 Language,English 2.0 Language,English Subtitles,Extensive Art Gallery

Review Equipment
Panasonic PT50LC13 50" LCD RP HDTV, Zenith DVB-318 Progressive Scan codefree DVD player via DVI with upconversion set to 720p, Sony STR-DE835 DD/DTS receiver, Panasonic SB-TP20S Multi-Channel Speaker System With 100-Watt Subwoofer.


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