Martian Successor Nadesico Vol. #5 -

Anime/Manga Reviews

Mania Grade: B

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  • Audio Rating: B+
  • Video Rating: B+
  • Packaging Rating: B-
  • Menus Rating: B-
  • Extras Rating: N/A
  • Age Rating: 12 & Up
  • Region: 2 - Europe
  • Released By: ADV Films UK
  • MSRP: £19.99
  • Running time: 110
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Disc Resolution: 480i/p (mixed/unknown)
  • Disc Encoding: MPEG-2
  • Series: Martian Successor Nadesico

Martian Successor Nadesico Vol. #5

By Paul Jacques     October 02, 2003
Release Date: September 22, 2003

Martian Successor Nadesico Vol. #5
© ADV Films UK

What They Say
Expect the unexpected as the revelations about the Jovians threaten to destroy the Nadesico. Even more gets revealed as the lovely ladies of the ship strip down to their bikinis for a decidedly non-military beauty contest! The fun and games turn deadly, however, when the Nadesico becomes the target of a new Jovian weapon and the entire pilot team starts seeing ghosts!

The Review!
If this was a box of cereal, it would definitely be categorized as the large family pack, because we get five (yes five) episodes featuring the slightly crazy crew of the Nadesico. Sit tight as we look over the penultimate volume in this series.

I watched half the episodes in Japanese, and half in English. No problems detected in the sound stream as both tracks were pumped out in a solid stereo. The opening song “You get to burning” still kicks out plenty of bass, hmm, nice. The closing song “Being myself” is finally getting my toe tapping, so better late than never.

The video transfer to DVD is still solid, with good colors and strong visual character lines. Not too much of a problem with overlays in this one. And I didn’t see any of the visual defects as was reported by R1 reviewers.

The front cover is adorned by Yuri, and as to why she has watery eyes, you’ll just have to wait and see. The rear cover has eight small stills, the forward and the menu listings. Inside we have a single page insert.

The disc itself continues with the same printed black & silver motif as was found on previous releases.

The menu is the same as previous volumes, with the entire Nadesico crew as the background. Over which we have the episode listings and language setup.


Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
The previous volume left me slightly agog, as we had learned that the Jovians Lizards were in fact humans, and not some alien species. And that the war was perpetuated by greed. In which case I did wonder what rabbit was left to pull from the plotline hat.

The first episode concerns the crews feelings about the “Jovian Lizards”, and they are deeply depressed that they are no longer fighting a just war. The admiral feels especially lost, as he has no cause to fight for, plus he will soon be demoted, so he takes the new X-Valis and kills himself in a fit of angst and delusion. No character is happy in this episode, and the mood of this episode moves from sad, to manically depressed then to jolly in a quick, but slightly unsettling, succession.

Next up we have an episode focusing on Ruri. She introspectively examines her childhood, amnesia and accelerated education. We learn that her upbringing was very scientific with little attention the fun things in life. It later transpires that Ruri has biological parents (who make themselves known at last), as well as foster parents. So she sets out to find the foster parents she barely remembers and fill the blanks in her memory. Only the foster parents are not what she remembers from her sterile child hood. In the end Ruri realizes that science can only give her answers, but the “Nadesico fools” can give her purpose and happiness.

Episode 19 is about a talent contest, the winner of which gets to be “Captain for a day”. And so the various female characters set about trying to find their inner star, and so win the competition. But the competition is just a ruse by Nergal to replace Yuriko with a pop idol puppet leader. Much hilarity ensues as the girls sing and strut their stuff, but then the Jovians attack and it is left to the “talentless” Ryoko to show what she is good at. In the end there can be only one winner and that is…..

Back to the action (about time) in episode 20, as the Nadesico detects a Jovian Battle Cruiser jumping into Earths atmosphere, and packing a new weapon to which they have no defense. Once again Yuriko shows that she is more than just a pretty face as she plots a counter strategy to the new weapon, which involves some old submarine tactics and a sneak attack by the Aestivalis wing.

The final episode on this disk is a strange one, and it involves lots of flashback and forward. The earth forces plan to lure the Jovians out so they can launch the Nadesico new ultra weapon, the PT canon. Only the Y Unit has gone crazy and is stopping anyone getting to it in time to spring the trap on the Jovians. With this episode we get a connection back to volume 4, where the Nadesico crew befriended a Jovian. Can they activate the weapon in time? Can they also work out why their feeling and memories are getting mixed up? Why is there a Batman joke in the middle of a fight? A little wierd, but some good motivational exposés are given am opportunity to enlighten us.

At the start of the episode 17 it was all about self doubt, but by the end of episode 20 it’s back to kicking Jovian butt. So this volume has me a little confused. The previous volume let the cat-out-of-the-bag about the war and Jovians. Whereas this disk concentrates on individual characters, but it’s a bit late to be telling us about their lives as we roll on towards to series finale. As such this volume does feel a bit like a filler volume. Only in the final episode does the plotline start to come back to the point.

In summary- it represents excellent VFM, but it’s not as good as previous volumes.

Japanese Language Dolby stereo,English Language Dolby stereo,English Subtitles

Review Equipment
JVC 28" Pure Flat Wide Screen TV, Pioneer 454 Progressive Scan code free DVD player, Logitech Z-680 THX DD/DTS receiver & Speakers. Secondary equipment, 21” Sony Trinitron monitor, ATI 9700pro & PowerDVD v4, Creative Audigy 2 & headphones.


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