Crimson Wolf -

Anime/Manga Reviews

Mania Grade: B

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  • Audio Rating: B
  • Video Rating: B+
  • Packaging Rating: C
  • Menus Rating: B
  • Extras Rating: N/A
  • Age Rating: 12 & Up
  • Region: All Region DVD
  • Released By: Image Entertainment
  • MSRP: 24.98
  • Running time: 60
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Disc Resolution: 480i/p (mixed/unknown)
  • Disc Encoding: MPEG-2
  • Series: Crimson Wolf

Crimson Wolf

By Chris Beveridge     November 03, 1998
Release Date: November 03, 1998

Crimson Wolf
© Image Entertainment

What They Say
The fate of the world rests in the ability of three untested warriors to defeat an unearthly army of darkness. Sorcery, martial arts and an unrequited love, spanning the centuries, explode in an epic battle at the gates of the forbidden city. Crimson Wolf is an unusual departure for the Anime genre - rooted in real world reference, it makes the fantasy all the more believable.

The Review!
Much like the demons running around at the end of this show, Streamline just keeps rearing its ugly head when you least expect it.

The latest catalog release via Image, Crimson Wolf is an odd beast. Some archaeologists find the remains of Genghis Khan, and unknowingly let loose a plan for him to conquer the world in a thousand days. Only three people, those who bear the wound of arrows shot during the discovery, are able to defeat the coming scourge.

First off, let me say this: Yes, there is a Japanese soundtrack. Yes, there are NO English subtitles. I probably would have enjoyed this a bit more if there were. The other problem I always run into when I watch a Streamline show is that I'm constantly wondering what, if anything, got cut. Especially when the story, such as this one, takes such strange turns.

And believe me, there is some strange turns in this disc, and it's definitely not for the younger crowd. As the back says, "Contains scenes of graphic animated violence". Uhhh, maybe you can mention the graphic animated sex as well next time? It doesn't bother me in the slightest (after all, I'm a fan of the first Urotsukidoji series), but it'd be nice for those who don't care for it to know in advance.

Even with the faults listed above, I enjoyed this show. The character designs for the most of the people were quite nice, especially Mizoru (forgive any name misspellings, as there is no listing anywhere on the jacket or on the disc for the characters names). Kai was also pretty well designed and animated. Mizoru was quite well animated for her naked scenes, of which there are several.

I only listened to the English dub, which was fairly well done. It was clear and used the front soundstage effectively enough, as well as a few surround effects thrown in once or twice.

During the opening credits, there are a few instances of a shimmer in the background, and a couple of similar ones towards the end of the show. I'm not sure if it's due to the encoding, but I've got the feeling that it's more from the master element, as it shimmered the most during the sections where English credits were overlaid and what looks like a freezing of the scene. It hardly detracted from anything, but I'm trying to be a bit hypercritical of it all.

The packaging is done in the traditional Image/Warner snapper case, but they chose to use some very poor art for it. There were a number of very good animated scenes in this show, and I'm sure there must have been something better out there to use. This is definitely a "Don't judge it by it's cover" disc.

Like most Image discs, there wasn't much to the menu, though there were at least language and scene selections to choose from. Nothing too exciting.

Overall, if you're a dub fan, odds are you'll enjoy this. The voice actors didn't do a bad job, all things considered, and it's a fairly enjoyable plot with some strange twists. Of course, it would have been better if it was translated and subtitled, but then again, I'm one of those purists, and hardly expect much from a Streamline show to begin with.

Japanese Language,English Language

Review Equipment
Toshiba CF36H50 36" TV, Pioneer 414 codefree DVD player, Sony STR-DE915 DD receiver, Monster S-Video cable and Sony speakers.


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