Mania Grade: D
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- Audio Rating: B
- Video Rating: B
- Packaging Rating: C
- Menus Rating: B-
- Extras Rating: N/A
- Age Rating: All
- Region: 2 - Japan
- Released By: Pony Canyon
- MSRP: �5800
- Running time: 90
- Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
- Disc Resolution: 480i/p (mixed/unknown)
- Disc Encoding: MPEG-2
- Series: Legend of Lyon Flare
Legend of Lyon Flare PLUS
Legend of Lyon Flare PLUS
What They SayThe Review!
© Pony Canyon
I want to start this review by saying that this is a hentai (adult) title, and as such it is definitely not recommended for viewers under the age of 18.
This is a very interesting region 2 title in that the producers of the DVD actually provided English titles! Unfortunately, despite the nod toward possible foreign importers, it's still a region 2 title. Why they chose to do this is I really haven't a clue; the subtitles for the Lyon Flare segments are actually licensed straight from AD Vision, which released that title domestically on VHS under their Softcel Pictures label. Perhaps AD Vision felt that this DVD might compete with their future products, but if so, why did Media Station even bother with adding titles? Chalk it up as one of the many mysteries of the anime marketplace.
This collection contains two different OVAs, both parts of the Lyon Flare series, and unrelated OVA called Balthus.
Lyon Flare concerns the alien invasion of the world Lyon, led by a really obnoxious entity named Glode, whose sadistic acts are right up there with what you'd expect to see in Urotsukidoji. Of course, only Flare and her psychic powers can save her world from destruction. That being said, Legend of Lyon Flare isn't a title I'd recommend. It's every bit as violent as Urotsukidoji, and really doesn't have a lot of plot to carry it along. If you really, really liked Urotsukidoji, then maybe this is something you'd care to see; it's very much a matter of personal opinion. I don't dislike hentai, but I didn't care much for this though. Of course, I didn't care much for Urotsukidoji either.
The pleasant surprise is the inclusion of the OVA Balthus (hence the PLUS) on the disc. Balthus is a 30-minute OVA, which is actually pretty good. Balthus is also subtitled, though these are not provided by AD Vision; in fact, Balthus has been released domestically by Media Blasters, where it goes by the title Balthus: Tia's Radiance.
Balthus concerns an industrial city of the same name, where the inhabitants work under the rule of the evil Morlock. Eud and Alphonse, two factory workers, set out to start a rebellion against Morlock, and things unfold from there. It's really a neat little film, with stylistic animation and a unique world. It's a much higher caliber than Lyon Flare, but being only 30 minutes, it might be hard for some to justify the entire cost of the DVD. Isn't it strange though how many titles Media Blasters has picked up that are also region 2 DVDs (Kite, Ninja Mono and Balthus)? I wonder if this is just coincidence. Also, Media Blasters also has a title called Legend of Reyon that seems to be a semi-sequel to Legend of Lyon Flare -- I haven't seen it, but the names of some of the key characters (Flare, Nerise) are mentioned on their web site synopsis, though their roles seem very different. (Flare is mentioned as being an evil queen for example.)
The video transfer is good, though it isn't nearly as sharp as some more recent titles I've seen. I believe this is more due to the age of the stock footage the DVD was mastered from (Lyon Flare was originally released over ten years ago.). Audio is Dolby Digital 2.0; and does an adequate job without really breaking any new ground. It should be noted that explicit scenes have been digitally distorted somewhat since Japan has laws against showing them without some degree of censoring.
The menu is a tad over the top for my tastes; lots of video windows in the scene selection submenus with gasping and moaning going on. There is a multi-media interactive game that you navigate using the arrow keys on the remote with lots of pictures and dialogue as you "walk around", along with an illustration gallery. The DVD comes packaged in a standard jewel box.
Some people have been asking recently about the possibility of Urotsukidoji being released on DVD; well, until that happens this is something that may fill that void provided you have the hardware to handle region 2. At least you have the convenience of English subtitles!
Japanese Language,English Subtitles,Image Gallery