Rurouni Kenshin: Seisou-hen Volume #1 -

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  • Audio Rating: A+
  • Video Rating: A+
  • Packaging Rating: A+
  • Menus Rating: A+
  • Extras Rating: A
  • Age Rating: All
  • Region: 2 - Japan
  • Released By: Sony Music Entertainment (Japan) Inc.
  • MSRP: ¥5,800
  • Running time: 50
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Disc Resolution: 480i/p (mixed/unknown)
  • Disc Encoding: MPEG-2
  • Series: Rurouni Kenshin (aka Samurai X)

Rurouni Kenshin: Seisou-hen Volume #1

    February 15, 2002
Release Date: February 09, 2002

Rurouni Kenshin: Seisou-hen Volume #1
© Sony Music Entertainment (Japan) Inc.

What They Say
This is the OVA series made as a finale to the animation series of Rurouni Kenshin. What is Kenshin's answer to his past sins? The first limited press version comes with color jacket with transparent case, picture label, and with clear stickers. Also comes with message comments from the staff and cast, and character and art data.

The Review!
Rurouni Kenshin Seisou Hen is the final 2 part chapter to the Rurouni Kenshin series. Fans of the TV series and manga will see that this story has a serious and at times darker tone to it than the original... but not that of the same dark tone of the first 4 OAV's. IMHO, this OAV (which was funded by ADV) is to bridge the gap between the original TV Series and the OAV series for manly
US fans of Samurai X and Rurouni Kenshin alike. This OAV takes place in 1893 (TV series was 1878) showing us how each of the characters have grown, and how life has changed. There are also
many redone flashbacks (one of them being a nice redone fight between Kenshin and Jineh) from the TV series from Kaoru's point of view (which is what most of this OAV is about). For fans of the Jinchuu Chapter in the comic book there are some scenes that
were added near the end of the DVD. Which will evidently lead up to the second chapter of the Seisou Hen story...which they don't give us a preview of :~(.

Overall this is an awesome DVD? I?m totally looking forward to part 2 to see Enishi and Kenshin battle it out.

Video Review
The one thing I love about this OAV is the fact that it's been filmed in 16 x 9 anamorphic format. The colours in the transfer are beautiful as with all R2 discs should be. There are no artifacts to be seen...I have to say this is one of the best transfers that I've seen.

Audio Review
PCM 2 channel Stereo is amazing on this disc. It's too bad there's no DTS or DD5.1 but none the less the music, sound and voices come through crystal clear...Very nice! I highly recommend
turning up the volume for this disc as the music is incredible. Thumbs up to TAKU WASAKI who composed this score.

Packaging Review
Packaging is really nice too. You get a clear case and a reversable cover. On the outside you have a picture of Kenshin's face and the good bye scene from the TV series. On the inside you
get a nice sunset view of the riverside with clips from the OAV of Kenshin and Kaoru.

The Menu system is in Japanese of course. The main menu system has nice animated backgrounds with a beautiful music score to go along with the short clips that appear of Kenshin and Kaoru. One the chapters menu there are about 7 Chapter stops available (kind wish they did more...but it's a minor gripe) with a video clip of Kenshin.

We've got 5-10 min interviews with 6 of the cast members who play, Kenshin, Kaoru, Yahiko, Seijuro Hiko, Jineh and Sanosuke. We've also got character designs of all the characters that appear in this OAV, as well as room, environment and object design.

Summary of the OAV (contains Spoilers)

The story initially takes place in Meiji 26 (1893). Where a war has just concluded and Kenshin is on ship heading back to Tokyo during a violent storm. Kenshin manages to save one of the crew mates of the ship but subsequently falls into the ocean from a
huge tidal wave. From this point it looks as if he drowns. Or does he? Is this how Kenshin will finally pass on?

Back in Tokyo, Kaoru is waiting at shipping docks for him, as she has been for many days, she eventually gives up for the day and walks back into town. From this point they show us a very old
fashion style of film using animation of Kaoru walking and film credits. From there she meets up with Tsubame and reiterates that she believes that Kenshin must be delayed and that he will return soon. Tsubame returns inside the Akabeko to talk to Yahiko about her concern that Karou and Kenji (Kenshin and Kaoru?s son) will be alone. Yahiko believes also that Kenshin will return. We also see that Yahiko now has the reverse blade sword. The next scene is with Kenji training with Hiko. Kenji seems to be holding a
grudge against his father for leaving his mother alone and wants to go back to Tokyo to settle his feelings. Back at the Kamiya School, Kaoru remembers the day Kenshin left to go to war. We are also shown that Kenshin?s body is either beginning to fail him or he has caught a disease which is causing his skin to rot. That same disease has past to Kaoru? she colapses and falls unconscious. Yahiko runs into the room yelling her name but it?s no use?she passes out.

From here we are shown clips of different scenes from the TV series that have been done in a different perspective. Many of them are with Kaoru and Kenshin talking about who they are and how Kaoru has an interest in Kenshin. There are also few scenes
with Yahiko, a scene with Lord Yamagata and a scene with Sanosuke trying to talk Kaoru out of talking with Kenshin before his fight with Jineh. Of course she refuses and takes off? only to be
kidnapped BEFORE getting to him (little change on the animator?s parts) and her Ribbon is left behind. From there we get a short talk between Jineh and Kaoru?and then an amazing fight as Kenshin enters the scene to fight Jineh. After this flashback, we see key
events leading up to Kyoto including the scene where Kenshin leaves Kaoru and the scenes that follow after that. During her conversation with Hiko (Misao is absent), Kaoru promises Kenshin that she will won?t get in the way of his battles. We then are shown Shishio?s Purgatory Ship as it explodes, Soujiro?s quicker than lightning fight with Kenshin, Shishio?s last swing of the Mugenjin before he self combusts into a flaming inferno and then the scene where Kenshin, Sano and Aoshi return to the Aoiya. We then get a few clips of Kenshin, Kaoru, Sanosuke, Yahiko and Megumi on a ship as they go back to Kyoto. And then finally as they return to the Kamiya school and Kaoru welcomes Kenshin back.

The next few scenes are taken from the Jinchuu Story. It starts off with Kenshin practising with Yahiko with a Shinai as Kaoru remembers what Megumi told her about Kenshin not possibly coming back one day. The next scene follows Kenshin and Kaoru as they walk through town, Kaoru is naïve in believing that there will be peace now, however Kenshin tells her otherwise and that a war will most likely break out again one day. She tells Kenshin how
she always wants to be with him, he tells her that he feels the same way especially since he?s come back from Kyoto and that Miss Kaoru welcomed him home?he knows that this will be a home to return to.

Then terror turns the stage as the words JIN-CHU (Vengeance of the People) are nailed to the Kamiya School door. Kenshin leaves (presumibly to see Enishi) and he comes home later, bruised and bleeding on his forehead. He doesn?t tell Kaoru anything until
the next day of when he picks up a cup that Sir Hiko made with ?White Plums? as a design. He decides to tell her about his Cross Shaped Scar. Kaoru leaves the School upset and then is surprised by Enishi as he grabs her and takes her awake as she falls
unconscious from a napkin that he?s holding with some drug in it
presumably. The last scene we see is Kenshin sitting on the deck and looking sadly up into the sky.

Can?t wait for part 2!!!

Japanese Language,Cast Interviews,Conceptual Artwork

Review Equipment
Hitachi 43" HDTV, Pioneer Receiver w/DD5.1 and DTS, Sinco 868 Region Free Player


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