Variable Geo Neo Vol. #2 -

Anime/Manga Reviews

Mania Grade: C+

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  • Audio Rating: B+
  • Video Rating: A-
  • Packaging Rating: B+
  • Menus Rating: B
  • Extras Rating: C+
  • Age Rating: 18 & Up
  • Region: 1 - North America
  • Released By: Critical Mass Video
  • MSRP: 19.98
  • Running time: 30
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Disc Resolution: 480i/p (mixed/unknown)
  • Disc Encoding: MPEG-2
  • Series: Variable Geo Neo

Variable Geo Neo Vol. #2

By Chris Beveridge     April 17, 2008
Release Date: April 29, 2008

Variable Geo Neo Vol. #2
© Critical Mass Video

What They Say
Busty Beauties Battle It Out!

Variable Geo continues! This time, it's the buxom, blonde Diane Ryan versus the beautiful and reserved Ayumi Okamoto! The winner of this match will advance to the semi-finals but watching what happens to the loser will be far more gratifying for the spectators. An entire team of men await the outcome, ready to debauch the loser for all to see.

Meanwhile, Yuu is still distraught over her childhood friend being publicly raped. Will she be able to pull herself together in time for her match in the semi-finals?

Behind the scenes of the competition, a storm is brewing. Masaki uncovers an incredible secret tying Yuu, Anna, and Misty together.. a secret that will take Variable Geo to a whole new level!

The Review!
The matches continue on as each participant has their goals but there must be losers who must suffer the penalty.

This release works with the fairly standard audio setup for bilingual adult releases in that we get a pair of stereo mixes encoded at 192kbps. There isn't much need for more than that here but the mix does pretty good overall with what it has during the action sequences and the opening and closing music aspects. The bulk of the show is centered around dialogue or sex sounds which don't really require a whole lot of directionality or depth to them. In general though everything sounds good and we had no problems with dropouts or distortions during regular playback of either language track.

Originally released in 2004, the transfer for this OVA series is presented in its original full frame aspect ratio. The show has some pretty good production values to it and Critical Mass has a rather solid presentation of it here as it's very clean and good looking. The animation has a good crisp feel to it throughout it when intended though there are some scenes where they use the stadium lighting to good effect as it casts a bit of a soft glow on the characters. Outside of a bit of background noise in a few scenes and some minor aliasing during the panning sequences, the show looks quite good and enjoyable.

The front cover for this installment plays up the violent side of it a bit as it features Yuu in her fighting waitress uniform which is quite torn and ripped as she cowers from the viewer. The colors and detail are great as it's very vibrant and it pushes the non-consensual side in a very strong way. The back cover has a good clean layout that's a bit brighter as the background is of the tournament ring while the foreground has a white cutout where the summary of what the show is about is located. A number of action shots from the show are included as well as one hint of nudity to show that yes, it is an adult release. The discs features are clearly listed and the technical grid along the bottom covers everything in a clear and concise fashion. No insert is included nor is there a reversible cover.

The menu layout for the series is rather straightforward but it has some good design elements to it that ties it together well even though it doesn't feel terribly in theme. The left half has a picture of Yuu from the front cover that's like a photograph on a blue corkboard while next to it are four post-it notes with the navigation information. The logo is along the bottom along with the volume name and number, all of which is set to an upbeat bit of vocals that runs just under a minute. The menus are quick and easy to access and they all load without problem. The disc also correctly read our players' language presets and played accordingly.

The extras are fairly standard though minimal but welcome enough with any adult release. There's a brief art gallery that runs just under a minute in length that you can chapter skip through to see it all. There's also the always enjoyable dub outtakes section which runs barely thirty seconds and has a few quick mild chuckles to it. You almost wish they'd intentionally provide a few more outtakes to flesh out sections like this.

Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
After the first episode of Variable Geo Neo, I really wasn't sure what to expect out of the show in terms of story, mostly because there wasn't much of one. The entire premise really does revolve around the tournament angle as the eight women pair off against each other and whittle down the list until there is only one left who can claim the prize. That's not exactly bad but it's not exactly deep either. And you sort of want deep with your adult anime. Ok, maybe a different kind of deep...

The second installment of Variable Geo Neo doesn't break any new ground but we do learn an important thing - the name of the purple haired violent woman from the first episode. Anna is her name and she's got some sort of serious goal in mind with the competition and continues to show that she has no problem taking out anyone that gets in her way in an easy manner. The series is all about pushing through the fight scenes so you can get to the penalty section which is where the meat of the show is. I swear this material just writes itself. This episode takes us through a couple of fights which in turn leads to a couple of penalty scenes with different women while others watch on. The only ones not watching on are Yuu and the announcer guy who leaves as soon as the match is over. Now that man has scruples.

The two fights are over quickly which means that we spend more time with the penalty sections. Outside of that, there's a bit of mild plot progression as Yuu finds that she has to carry on so that Sanari's sacrifice wasn't in vain while Masaki starts to realize that there's something big going on here that involves clones. Hot clones. Mmmm, clones... This episode takes us through two fights with "new" characters and in turn leads to two sex scenes. The first one involves the American fighter Diane getting her butt handed to her but she's got spunk as she tries to fight off the Men in Black before they can have their way with her. She's hog tied pretty quickly and anally raped in a way that turns her into someone who discovers she loves it.

The other main scene is one that has Anna taking down her opponent, the cute young looking Kei. The obligatory girl with glasses, Kei isn't the goth loli type but she has elements of it with the whitish gray hair and the bows nestled within them. When the Men in Black get her, she paints the tantalizing portrait of a young women with her small breasts and slender figure which is definitely accented by her facial features and the glasses. It's plainly apparent who she's supposed to appeal to and she's taken forcibly through the penalty sequence as the Men in Black pour lots of the goop on her that intensifies everything she feels. Both scenes are over too quick in the end though and the impact and potential for them feels diminished because of it.

In Summary:
With the second episode of Variable Geo Neo, the show whittles down the cast a bit more and provides some meager hints as to what's going on behind the scenes. Nothing radically shifts here but we do get another pair of penalty scenes and some solid looking animation throughout. The character designs continue to be appealing and it's even more so when you realize they're tossing clones into the mix so it just ups the number of attractive characters in an obvious way. The non consensual side of the show and the public humiliation aspect parts will be a deal breaker for some but for others it'll be a strong lure. The downside is that the series is really one that would work better as a whole instead of three parts, but at least Critical Mass is giving it to us on a monthly basis and they reduced the price so that with a bit of competitive shopping you can get it close to ten bucks a disc, which is about where it belongs.

Japanese 2.0 Language,English 2.0 Language,English Subtitles,Art gallery, English outtakes

Review Equipment
Sony KDS-R70XBR2 70" LCoS 1080P HDTV, Sony PlayStation3 Blu-ray player via HDMI set to 1080p, Onkyo TX-SR605 Receiver and Panasonic SB-TP20S Multi-Channel Speaker System With 100-Watt Subwoofer.


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