Vanilla Series: Slave Sisters - Mania.com



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Mania Grade: C+

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Info:

  • Audio Rating: B+
  • Video Rating: B+
  • Packaging Rating: A-
  • Menus Rating: B
  • Extras Rating: C+
  • Age Rating: 18 & Up
  • Region: 1 - North America
  • Released By: Critical Mass Video
  • MSRP: 24.95
  • Running time: 60
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Disc Resolution: 480i/p (mixed/unknown)
  • Disc Encoding: MPEG-2
  • Series: Vanilla Series Collection

Vanilla Series: Slave Sisters

By Chris Beveridge     September 29, 2003
Release Date: August 26, 2003


Vanilla Series: Slave Sisters
© Critical Mass Video


What They Say
From Writer Nikukyuu (GIRL NEXT DOOR / MEIKING ) and Producers Shiyuuta Biwajima and Chikara Niki (DARK / GIRL NEXT DOOR / CAMPUS / MEIKING) comes a nightmarish tale of lust and debauchery for two sisters as they’re forced to become Sex Slaves!

Slavery or Death?

Yukari Isshiki always believed her life would be full of laughter and happiness. Surrounded by her parents and younger sister, Miku, she seemed to have it all. But that was before... before IT happened. In an instant, Yukari lost both her parents and her freedom. Inheriting a massive debt to a powerful crime syndicate, she was given only two options for her and her sister: become Sex Slaves, or be killed.

Forced into a life they never imagined in their worst nightmares, Yukari and Miku’s innocence is about to be shattered as the two sisters enter into a world of lust, debauchery, and cruelty. Under the guidance of Shunji Iwashiro, a sex slave trainer, they will be taught everything from public humiliation and S&M to anticipating any possible sexual craving their new masters could imagine. They’ll be trained to please. Please their clients, their trainer...and even each other.

The Review!
Taking another stroll down into the Vanilla Series arena, Slave Sisters brings us to an interesting training program of two young women.

Audio:
Since I’m pretty much allergic to dubs in English for hentai unless it’s in a group setting, we listened to this show in its original language of Japanese. The show has a pretty decent stereo mix that has a couple of noticeable areas of directionality across the forward soundstage but is otherwise pretty much center channel based. Dialogue is clean and clear and we had no issues with dropouts or distortions during regular playback.

Video:
Originally released to video just this year, the transfer here looks really nice. Colors are solid without any noticeable bleeding, cross coloration is pretty much non-existent and we only noticed some aliasing during a few up and down panning sequences. All the original text is left in place here, including the text dialogue at the beginning and end of each episode (which has nicely matching subtitle colors).

Packaging:
This release sports a really attractive piece of cover artwork featuring the two lead sisters in some very simple fabric, covering them in the appropriate areas. It’s very nicely drawn with lots of detail and excellent shading, very eye-catching. The back cover provides a couple of shots from the show itself and a good summary of what to expect while also providing the basic features and extras available on the disc. As with most Right Stuf releases to this date, there is no included insert.

Menu:
The menu is done up simply, close to many other Vanilla Series releases, where selections are along the left. The central focus of the menu is a video screen where you see the action taking place while a figure standing in front of it watches, which is in theme with the shows premise. The menus have good access times and load very quickly and we had no issues with losing our language selections when starting the program in various ways.

Extras:
The only included extra is a brief slideshow that runs about a minute long and has various cels from the two episodes as well as some other artwork which is just gorgeous, much like the cover.

Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
The Vanilla Series continues to offer a variety of different shows in the world of hentai, some better than others depending upon ones tastes. Slave Sisters manages to walk the thin line of taste by touching on some things that normally cross the line, but not going as full out as it could, or as some other shows do.

The premise is fairly straightforward. We’re introduced to two young women named Yukari and Miku. The two of them have just lost their parents in some form and are in a period of mourning. Things have already been settled for their future, with a supposed boyfriend of Yukari’s taking them in and giving them both a home. There’s even plans, as Miku finds out, for Yukari to marry Shunji.

Their arrival at Shunji’s house is done tensely, and there’s a precognition of sorts of various sexual acts which causes the show to shift from its bluish/black and white style to full color. Shunji lives by himself as his parents have expanded the family business and are now living in Los Angeles along with his sister. Or at least, that’s his cover story. Also living with him is another young man named Takamura, a somewhat quiet lad who doesn’t get terribly involved in things.

Of course, we know more of what’s going on than at least Miku at first, as we see Shunji being instructed to train both girls for a client, something that he’s been doing for several years now. It also turns out that this is his last job, so they’ve asked him to teach Takamura his methods so they don’t completely lose all they’ve invested in him. With Takamura watching everything going on in the house through all the cameras, Shunji begins his training with Yukari – and Yukari isn’t surprised at all.

Her training goes into the first couple of weeks, and we see all that she goes through, which soon leads into Shunji starting Miku’s training. The differences between the two is the main appeal here, with Yukari being somewhat cold, but more controlled and unable to let go, while Miku’s life is more ruled by her emotions. Miku’s acceptance into her fate goes a bit more easily than one would expect, but between seeing what her sister has been up to and the fate that awaits her otherwise, she goes right into it. Of course, being very attracted to Shunji doesn’t hurt either.

From there, the show goes deeper into the training as the weeks go on, but also starts exploring some emotional issues and damage that gets caused along the way. In the end, it’s a half decent little show that doesn’t come across quite as mean or evil as a lot of the training types of shows do, giving this one almost a bit of a “lite” feel to it. The animation for it is decent, nothing terribly detailed or fluidly animated, but the character designs for the women are appealing and the male characters aren’t hideous beasts.

Slave Sisters tries to be a bit more with its psychological explorations, but in the end we’re all coming here for the sex, so those are the kind of scenes that you usually just fast forward through. For those looking for some of the master/slave style shows, this one is a decent entry level show.

Features
Japanese Language,English Language,English Subtitles,Slideshow

Review Equipment
Toshiba TW40X81 40" 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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