KO Beast Vol. #3: Clash of the Jinns - Mania.com



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Mania Grade: B+

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Info:

  • Audio Rating: B+
  • Video Rating: B+
  • Packaging Rating: A-
  • Menus Rating: B+
  • Extras Rating: B+
  • Age Rating: 13 & Up
  • Region: 1 - North America
  • Released By: Nozomi Entertainment
  • MSRP: 24.95
  • Running time: 60
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Disc Resolution: 480i/p (mixed/unknown)
  • Disc Encoding: MPEG-2
  • Series: KO Beast

KO Beast Vol. #3: Clash of the Jinns

By Chris Beveridge     October 09, 2003
Release Date: October 28, 2003


KO Beast Vol. #3: Clash of the Jinns
© Nozomi Entertainment


What They Say
Yuni’s been kidnapped! As the Beasts race to rescue her, S.P. Icegal is quickly losing in on Gaia’s location, while V-Darn and V-Sion are closing in on them both! When all their paths cross, you just know there’s going to be trouble. Who will be the ultimate victor in this colossal, three way battle for the treasure of Gaia?

Meanwhile, there’s trouble brewing in the Humans’ ranks. Czar Master’s control over S.P. Icegal seems to be weakening. Locked inside her memories are the answers to everything - including her own identity. When the truth is revealed, the last battle begins; but could winning mean the ultimate sacrifice for one of our heroes? It’s a hilarious, all-out, mad dash for the treasure in the final volume of K.O. Beast!

The Review!
The final installment of the series brings two heavily action packed episodes tied with an epic scale back story to wrap it all up.

Audio:
For our primary viewing session, we listened to this show in its original language of Japanese. The show features a decent stereo mix with a good sense of directionality for some of the vocal moments, but otherwise a solid center channel mix with good use by the music of the stereo channels. Dialogue is nice and clear and we noted no dropouts or distortions.

Video:
Originally released back in early 90’s, KO Beast was a very good looking release at the time with great OVA animation quality. The transfer here manages to bring most of that to life, though there are some scratches on the print in a few areas. Barring that rather small issue, something I almost expect to see on anything from that time period and earlier, this transfer looks great. Nice vibrant colors, some minimal cross coloration along hairlines in places and minimal aliasing during some panning sequences.

Packaging:
Designed much like the earlier volumes in layout in coloring, this release is nicely eye-catching with the three principle characters getting nice pose shots underneath the logo as well as Yuni off to the side. Lots of eye-catching color here and good classic character designs. The front cover and the spine both contain the volume number, which continues to get big kudos from us. The back cover provides several character shots and some shots from the show itself surrounding the solid show summary. Production credits are minimal but the special features are nicely favored and clearly listed. The insert has another shot of the front cover while the reverse side has boxart adverts.

Menu:
The menu is a nice energetic piece with lots going on while the opening theme plays along. Each of the selections has an animation piece playing below it, but this doesn’t slow down the load or access times at all since they aren’t transitional. The layout is pretty nicely done and things move nice and fast. The only slowdown comes in moving around in the trailers, as each trailer you move over causes a new logo to be loaded.

Extras:
Much like the past volumes, there are some good extras included here. There is one section devoted just to the shows creator and what he’s done over the years, which was surprising since I didn’t recognize the name immediately. There’s also the continuation of the character biographies, providing their Japanese names and little tidbits about them. The translator notes are here again, though almost painfully short. Add in a new section of dub outtakes and a brief art gallery and top it off with the original OVA opening for the sixth and seventh episodes and you come away with some good material here to check out after the show is over.

Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
With the final two episodes of the second OVA series, much of what has come before in the back story finally gets revealed and some of the little bits that have been scattered throughout get explained away. Toss in a revelation or two and lots of action and the two OVA episodes here really fly by.

The bulk of the two episodes comes in the form of chase scenes. Initially we have everyone chasing after the leads and their Jinn as they head further north. V-Darn and V-Sion are in close pursuit at the same time. All of this to reach S.P. Icegal and to figure out what’s up with Yuni. Eventually everyone ends up at a glacier in the middle of the ocean up north, but not just any glacier. Deep inside is the treasure that’s been searched for over the past 10,000 years. Naturally, this is all lost on a number of our characters as they continue to just ram through walls in their dogged pursuit of Yuni and her captor.

The interior to the glacier is huge, spanning quite a number of caverns and apparently a lot of depth as well. The chases continue until eventually you have Icegal, Yuni and our leads all together deep inside the machinery. The vast complicated gear located under here actually turns out to be the remnants of Gaia, the super computer network system that vied for control over the world millennia ago. With Yuni used as a key of sorts, the explanations start to flow and we see the vast and varied history of 10,000 years ago and what led to the slicing open of the Earth. So much for creative license in the opening credits.

Things settle down for a bit as all of this unfolds and Wan and the others try to absorb such a rich and interesting history. Before they realize it, Uranus has infilitrated the system and has started to take over the network for humanity’s sake, to give him the ability to control the world and build a paradise for them. With Yuni attempting to fight him and the other Beasts with her, it shifts into the usual chase/fight scenes until it comes to a nice and surprisingly satisfying conclusion.

KO Beast is a series that has some really strong nostalgia for me but also manages to be fresh at the same time. Having only seen the first OVA series before, the second one was completely new and gave me something to look forward to in addition to being able to rejoice in seeing a classic finally get the proper treatment. KO Beast is just a pure fun show that I had a great time slipping into again. With its comical mix of English and historical pieces tied to the furry side of the future and the technological side of humanity, they hit all the right notes and kept me happy throughout.

Features
Japanese Language,English Language,English Subtitles, Outtakes, Character Bios, Translator Notes, Animated Art Gallery, Biography of Producer Satoru Akahori, Original Openings for Episodes 6&7

Review Equipment
Panasonic PT50LC13 50" LCD RP HDTV, Panasonic RP-82 Progressive Scan codefree DVD player, Sony STR-DE835 DD/DTS receiver, Monster component cable and Sony speakers.


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