Neon Genesis Evangelion Collection 0:1 - Mania.com



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Info:

  • Audio Rating: C
  • Video Rating: B-
  • Packaging Rating: B+
  • Menus Rating: A
  • Extras Rating: B-
  • Age Rating: 13 & Up
  • Region: 4 - Australia / South America
  • Released By: Madman Entertainment
  • MSRP: 29.95 AU
  • Running time: 100
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Disc Resolution: 480i/p (mixed/unknown)
  • Disc Encoding: MPEG-2
  • Series: Neon Genesis Evangelion

Neon Genesis Evangelion Collection 0:1

    February 01, 2003
Release Date: December 05, 2000


Neon Genesis Evangelion Collection 0:1
© Madman Entertainment


What They Say
The year is 2015. As the remnants of the human race cower in subterranean cities, a deadly war is being waged for what is left of the planet. On one side are the mysterious beings known only as the Angels; on the other; the special agency NERV and mankind's last hope, the awe-inspiring Evangelions.

Piloted by a special team of young warriors, these giant bio-mechanical humanoids are the only thing that can withstand the force of the Angels' defense fields long enough for the pilots to tackle the massive invaders themselves in brutal hand-to-hand combat! With the lives of every soul on the planet at stake, these few youngsters must reach deep inside themselves to find the strength and courage necessary to meet the Angels head on in a desperate attempt to save mankind.
At the same time, NERV struggles to pierce the veil of mystery surrounding the enigmatic Angels.

Why was the Earth attacked? And why were the only Evangelion-qualified pilots all born exactly nine months after the giant meteor impact that massacred half of the human race? High-tech action, blistering battle sequences, soul ripping drama and spectacular visuals are seamlessly merged in a stunning new animated series that ventures beyond the boundaries of space opera and even question the very nature of what it is to be human! Mankind's last battle has begun in NEON GENESIS EVANGELION!

The Review!
Neon Genesis Evangelion is a show I knew I just had to buy on DVD. It was one of the triggers for my Anime obsession, and I'm sure the same applies to many of you. So does the first installment deliver?

Audio:
This release unfortunately lacks the French and Spanish language tracks of the American release, which is a shame. Add to that, the English track seems to be poorly done, with the audio often out of synch with the video. It's odd, because at times, the audio and video are in synch, but at other points, they are off by as much as a full second. It causes the show to look extremely silly. On the plus side, the Japanese track doesn't seem to have anything wrong with it at all, which is a huge relief for many.

Video:
The video is... a bit of a mixed bag. For the most part, it is shaky, blurry, and generally doesn't look as good as I was hoping. In fact, the pictures on the back of the cover look about five times as good as the actual content. However, the dodgy quality seems to disappear during the action scenes, which are wonderfully animated and a real treat for the eyes.

Packaging:
The front cover is the same as the US release, featuring Shinji in a rather out-of-character, determined-looking pose, along with an image of Unit 01's face on the left. It's a bit dark and not exactly eye-catching.

The back cover is great, though, featuring a movie-like layout with plenty of text and great-looking pictures. It works really well, however it doesn't contain much detail on the technicalities of the disc.

Menu:
The menu is computerish, with tiny little animated details all over it to really make it look impressive. The constantly reoccurring hum in the background is a nice touch. On the left are the extra menus and on the right are the language selections. This makes it very easy to choose the language you want to view.

The center features a green outline of Unit 00, which slides up from the bottom of the screen and then splits open during the menu intro, revealing the play options. If you are traveling from the main menu to an extra menu or vice versa, the loading times can be slow, but travel between the extra menus is extremely quick.

The whole menu is the purple color of Unit 01, complete with small touches of orange. Very nice. Possibly the only bad thing about the menu design is that if you choose to play a specific episode, you have to choose which scene to begin at, which can be annoying, and sometimes confusing. But overall, I really like this design.

Extras:
The only real extras on here are character profiles. This volume features Shinji Ikari, Misato Katsuragi, Eva Unit 01, Angel #3 - Sachiel, and Angel #4 - Shamshel. The bios are short, but help you get an idea of the characters and concepts without really spoiling anything, which is nice.

Apart from the character bios, all you really get are some ADV trailers.

Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
"Evangelion - The best Anime ever." This is a phrase I'm sure you've all heard at one point or another, and after the first volume, it's not too apparent why. That's not to say this isn't a great bunch of episodes, because it is, but first time viewers can easily stop watching right here and now. I strongly advise against it, however, as the show is just gaining momentum in these early stages.

The intro, I must say, is superb, with enough images and animation crammed into a minute and a half to give you a brain overload. The song - Zankoku na tenshi no te-ze (or Thesis of a Cruel Angel) can very easily get caught in your head. This is an intro I love watching.

The first episode introduces us to the protagonist, Shinji Ikari. The show quickly sets him up as a normal, every day teenager who gets pulled into a situation that is far from normal. He is chosen as the pilot for an Evangelion - a monstrous machine designed to fight off the Angels. The Angels are far from what their name might suggest, and are basically huge monsters who are attacking for unknown reasons. The first episode ends with a cliffhanger, with Shinji about to go into battle for the first time.

This setup on its own seems like nothing special, and it all seems rather uninspired and unoriginal at this stage. But it all picks up with the second episode, which launches into a wonderfully animated battle sequence which is very stylishly handled. In addition, this episode truly starts to flesh out Shinji's character and his reaction to everything he's just been through is very believable.

We also get to know Shinji's guardian, Misato Katsuragi, who is a total slob - in a way in which you can't help but like her. This series also features probably the most awkward father-son relationship I have ever seen, as Gendo Ikari leaves all the caregiving up to Misato.

Another character we meet is Rei Ayanami, a fellow Eva pilot, though at this point, she's basically just a walking enigma.

The third episode introduces us to Shinji's classmates, one of which is Toji Suzuhara. At first, he seems to be a typical school bully, as he clobbers Shinji the first chance he gets, but through the course of the episode, his relationship with Shinji and our view of his character changes dramatically. Very well done.

The final episode deals with Shinji as he tries to escape his new life by running away. It's well done, and it has heavy character development, but the idea fills the entire episode, and it starts to feel a little uninteresting after a while.

On a whole, the first DVD is a nice introduction to the world of Evangelion, and it all moves at just the right pace. Needless to say, these aren't the best episodes of the series, but they are good. If you haven't seen any Eva yet, this is your starting point. I highly recommend it.

Features
English Language,Japanese Language,English Subtitles,Character Bios

Review Equipment
NEC FS59T90 Chromavision 59cm Color Television, Pioneer DV-535 Twin Laser Region 4 DVD Player, Pioneer VSX-D337 Receiver compatible with Full Digital Dolby Surround Pro Logic and DSP Dolby Virtual, component cables, and Pioneer 5.1 speaker setup.

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