Eureka Seven Vol. #03 -

Anime/Manga Reviews

Mania Grade: B

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  • Audio Rating: B+
  • Video Rating: B+
  • Packaging Rating: A-
  • Menus Rating: A-
  • Extras Rating: B+
  • Age Rating: 12 & Up
  • Region: 2 - Europe
  • Released By: Beez
  • MSRP: £19.99
  • Running time: 125
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Disc Resolution: 480i/p (mixed/unknown)
  • Disc Encoding: MPEG-2
  • Series: Eureka Seven

Eureka Seven Vol. #03

By Dani Moure     August 31, 2007
Release Date: January 15, 2007

Eureka Seven Vol. #03
© Beez

What They Say
Eureka notices that since Renton's arrival, her relationship with the Nirvash is changing and her health continues to get worse; more mysteries await, however, as the Gekko has discovered a mysterious phenomenon called a Coralian. Although she's not really up to the task, Eureka goes out in the Nirvash and flies inside, she is attacked by a new LFO!

The Review!
New characters are introduced as the military closes in on the crew of the Gekkostate in the latest volume of Eureka Seven.

I listened to the English language track for my main review, and I noticed no dropouts, distortions or other technical problems with the track, which is a pretty standard anime stereo mix with some decent directionality. The dub continues to be quite strong with some good lead performances, and in spot-checking the Japanese track I didn't notice any problems with it.

Presented in full screen, the video looks extremely crisp and sharp, showing off a really good transfer on the part of Beez. The colour palette the show uses is generally very bright, and that comes across with great vibrancy on screen. Alas, I only wish a show like this was in widescreen. I didn't notice any aliasing, cross-colouration or other artefacts during regular playback.

The English subtitles are white, in a clearly readable font, and I didn't notice any glaring errors.

The front cover has quite a striking layout, with an image of the Nirvash surfing in the top right. A small strip down the left contains the volume number with an amusing piece of text describing the episodes on the disc. The logo is below the image of Eureka, along with a few select credits from the show. Four screenshots are also in a strip right at the bottom. The back cover includes a description of the show as well as an episode listing with brief summaries of each. There's no technical grid that usually appears on a Beez release, but technical specs are clearly listed, as are the extras. The cover, while busy, generally looks really nice and I just really like the different design and feel of it.

The main menu starts with a fairly lengthy opening animation, before cutting to the menu proper. The opening theme plays, while an image of Eureka appears to the left hand side. On the right is the show's logo, a video segment playing clips from the show, and the selections underneath. There's also line art in the background, moving about. Sub-menus all have different music playing over them, and have different images but fit the same theme. There's a small transition as each menu fades to the next as well. They don't try to be too fancy, but are really stylised and in tone with the show and again, look really good. This is just a high quality release in general.

There are a couple of really good extras again on this volume. First is another audio commentary on episode 13 with the Japanese cast. It's not wildly revealing or anything, but much like many English voice actor commentaries, it's a lot of fun to listen to (and they sure have a lot of energy!). There's a similar commentary on Episode 15 as well.

The second main extra is the next part of an interview with the dub cast, which features Johnny Yong Bosch (Renton), in which he answers several questions about his work on the show and his character.

Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
The third volume of Eureka Seven introduces us to some new characters as the military step up their pursuit of the Gekkostate, and it all has an interesting impact on Eureka and Renton. As the Gekkostate travels around Eureka is looking down and no one quite knows why, as she doesn't appear ill but she's acting different. At the same time, the crew discover something known as a Coralian, and head towards it to take a look.

The military is also closing down on the Coralian, though, and a new kid called Dominic has come in as "staff officer", almost in control of their ship, along with a girl called Anemone who is an LFO pilot. Several of the crew, including Eureka and Renton in the Nirvash, go out to ride the Coralian, but they soon notice the military's presence and Anemone goes out in an LFO of her own, called The End. Anemone's presence adds a complete surprise factor, as she's quite the character and you can never be sure of exactly what she is going to do.

Her first act sees her attacking Matthieu's 606, leaving him with an almost near-death experience, while she then turns her attention to the Nirvash. Interestingly, her The End and the Nirvash are almost exactly the same in design, and during their brief battle inside the Coralian, Renton gets trapped in a dream where he sees some unusual visions of his sister and Eureka, while Dominic tries to get Anemone back and the crew of the Gekko try the same with Eureka and Renton.

This part of the story is interesting mostly because of the impact Anemone has; the dream sequence in particular is very strange and you can't be entirely sure what it means at this stage. But her unpredictability combined with the rage she shows when she comes head to head with the Nirvash add a spice to the series that had been somewhat missing particularly in the last volume, and the ever foreboding military presence compounds the danger there.

What this leads to is an interesting episode where we get to see Dominic and Renton work together for the sake of their respective girls, and it's interesting to see the reaction in the town they go to for medicine to Dominic's military uniform, as it would seem the military isn't the most liked organisation around. Apparently they have caused much destruction in this town alone, and for that they are hated by its population.

Of course, it all works out in the end and although we don't get to find out too much about Dominic and Anemone's purpose, the taste of what we've seen leaves you anticipating the next time they'll show up and cause the Gekko's crew trouble. The next episode takes us in to the second quarter of the show, and with that comes a new opening and ending, and also a recap episode of sorts. It's a bit unusual in how it's done with some narration by an outside character, and it is a fair bit more interesting than a simple sequence of clips from parts of previous episodes, but it still is a recap episode at the end of the day.

The final episode on the disc spices things up again, introducing some tension between Renton and Eureka. She's still acting strange based on the feelings of the Nirvash, and so goes with Matthieu and Renton to Contorado, a place where they can find a puncha nut " one of the three healthiest foods on the planet. It would seem Matthieu's near death experience with the Coralian has sparked a health craze on the ship. It just so happens that Renton used to go to Contorado as a child, and the trio end up visiting his uncle. But it all goes a bit pear-shaped when the military are called in to take Matthieu and Eureka in to custody.

There's some really good action and excitement in this outing, especially once the military get involved, and although the story ends up being a bit convoluted in how Renton's uncle sets him up to get free of being wanted, while Eureka and Matthieu should be taken, it has some interesting results in the end. It's still unclear exactly what is wrong with Eureka and the Nirvash, but she clearly doesn't like what Renton managed to do with it in front of her. Is she jealous or is she more worried than anything?

It's an interesting volume in how the story unfolds, because a lot of what is presented here is obviously laying the foundation for future events. In that way it seems as though Eureka Seven has been really well planned, with the story likely to kick into high gear as it enters its latter half, with all the characters and events being built up in the first half. The slower pace of story-telling can be a bit frustrating at times, but the thought of having the likes of Anemone and Dominic show up again is intriguing based on their first appearances.

In Summary:
There is still over two-thirds of the series left to go, so at this stage Eureka Seven is just building on its story and characters to lead up to future events. Unfortunately a few of the characters, like Holland and Talho, are pushed to the wayside a bit, but there are a few key developments for Eureka and Renton's relationship in this volume, and we of course get to see some new characters as well. The series is likely to continue building at a slower pace for the next couple of volumes before the story really kicks in, and that suits me just fine as long as the payoff ends up justifying the build up. At this stage it's still promising.

Japanese Language (2.0),English Language (2.0),English Subtitles,Audio Commentaries with Japanese Staff (Episodes 13 and 15),Interview with American Cast (Part 2)

Review Equipment
Philips 28" Pure Flat Widescreen TV, Philips DVP 5100 code free DVD player, JVC gold-plated RGB SCART cable, Pioneer HTP-GS1 5.1 Surround Sound System.


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