Jewel BEM Hunter Lime - Mania.com



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Info:

  • Audio Rating: B+
  • Video Rating: A-
  • Packaging Rating: A-
  • Menus Rating: B
  • Extras Rating: C
  • Age Rating: 15 & Up
  • Region: 1 - North America
  • Released By: Media Blasters
  • MSRP: 24.95
  • Running time: 90
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Disc Resolution: 480i/p (mixed/unknown)
  • Disc Encoding: MPEG-2
  • Series: Jewel BEM Hunter Lime

Jewel BEM Hunter Lime

By Chris Beveridge     January 28, 2002
Release Date: January 08, 2002


Jewel BEM Hunter Lime
© Media Blasters


What They Say
There is another world alongside ours. It is a world of demons and all manner of peculiar creatures. Strange monsters known as BEM's have escaped from the other world, and the have possessed the indignant spirits naturally occurring inside of everyday items. To stop them, Lime emerges from the other world with a heart full of honesty and a head full of air! She may not be the brightest being from the other world, but she means well. With her magical powers and gorgeous body, she's determined to rid earth of the insidious BEM's!

The Review!
If this had been a bit tamer and an average series length as opposed to an incomplete three episode OVA series, this would probably be placed within the same genre as Sailor Moon and others for the monster of the week category.

Audio:
For our primary viewing session, we listened to this disc in its original language of Japanese. This is a pretty basic stereo mix OVA release, so there's hardly anything going to the rears but the forward soundstage comes across nicely. Dialogue is clean and clear and while there's practically no directionality across the forward soundstage, things are pretty decent overall.

Video:
Originally released in 1996, this show sports some very nice colors and animation design for most of the three episodes. This works well with the transfer here, which is really great overall. Backgrounds, particularly blue skies, are nice and solid. The only thing we really saw that bothered us was some shimmering during most panning sequences. The only bad part to the authoring is after the opening credits for the first episode. The screen goes black as it transitions to the episode animation, but after a second or two a frame from the opening appears again and then disappears and the show starts.

Packaging:
I'm really glad to see the various companies starting to take chances with their packaging. Though I've seen it available for awhile, I've never seen one of the pink keepcases in person. With it used here, it works great to accentuate the title and draw some extra attention to it, but not so much that it's an eye-sore. It also helps that the cover art for the most part is indeed as it's labeled, Cute & Sexy, with the main characters posing and Lime doing her cheesecake shot. The back cover provides several animation and character shots of both Lime and Mizuki, including one of Lime in her nurses outfit, surely enough to entice some to buy. There's a decent summary of the show and the production credits are clearly listed. Amusingly, for the genre, it's listed as "Sexy Comedy".

Menus:
With little to do on the disc besides setting it up and playing it, the menus are pretty basic. The main menu has a nice image of Lime with some background music playing. Moving between menus is nice and fast and access times overall are pretty good.

Extras:
Reminiscent of an extra that they've done before, the only one included here is a virtual doll of sorts of Lime, where you can apply different outfits to her to suit your... er, needs.

Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
As mentioned above, if you just tone down the "sexy" part of this a bit and make it 26 episodes, you'd have a show that would fit inside most peoples idea of what a monster of the week show is like. Yet even with the "sexy" part of it, the show in general feels very much part of the been there, seen that mentality that many "older" fans have. There's gotta be something unique to really hook me into these kinds of shows anymore.

Unfortunately, there's no hook.

The show opens with a humanoid demon-ish looking character whose fleeing from two others. They're traveling through a rather rough and icky looking land, and then suddenly they shoot out from the moon. Apparently once a month, during the full moon, a gateway between the Human World and the Magic World opens, and this is one of those times. The fleeing criminal flies through the sky and the two chasers follow-suit. The very demonic looking one tackles him, causing him to fall to his death. The side-effect is that the case he was carrying breaks open, and about a half dozen colored spheres descend to various places in the city below.

It's here that we get our full introduction to the two leads. The demonic three-eyed gentleman is named Bass and is one of the better hunters. The angelic looking woman in skimpy outfit is named Lime while the little ball of yellow goo on her shoulder is named Poogie. With the release of the sphere's on humanity, the balance of things and the agreement of peace between the two worlds is now in trouble. The spheres absorb sadness and anger and refocuses it to something tangible.

Which means our villains are: a one foot tall candle with an attitude, a purse who doesn't know how its supposed to be evil and a syringe who just wants to make people feel even worse.

So yeah, bottom of the barrel Sailor Moon monsters of the week.

While the monsters are supposed to provide the comic relief, the real draw of course is supposed to be Lime and her interplay with Bass. In another unfortunate move, Lime is pretty much bland, generic and almost unlikable for the first half of the series. The character's got so little to it in these episodes that there's little to really get you into her, even though she's the title character.

In fact, I found Bass to be a much more interesting character with his slightly goofy ways and almost naive view of the modern world that came into play a couple of times. Of course, I have a great tendency to like almost any character the great Kappei Yamaguchi plays, so I wasn't surprised when I saw his name for this character in the credits. Bass takes most of the abuse in the show and is probably the most consistent of the characters.

While the packaging and audio/visual presentation of this disc are pretty slick overall, the content of the show itself felt very lacking. Since this is all that was made of this series, you're at least getting the entire thing without worrying about picking up more discs. And if you're a fan, you're getting a great release. But if you hate the monster of the week mentality, I'd pass on this one.

Features
Japanese Language,English Language,English Subtitles,Virtual Lime

Review Equipment
Toshiba TW40X81 40" HDTV, Skyworth 1050P Progressive Scan codefree DVD player, Sony STR-DE835 DD/DTS receiver, Monster component cable and Sony speakers.

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