Zone of the Enders Vol. #5 - Mania.com



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Mania Grade: B+

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Info:

  • Audio Rating: B+
  • Video Rating: B+
  • Packaging Rating: B
  • Menus Rating: B
  • Extras Rating: B+
  • Age Rating: 12 & Up
  • Region: 2 - Europe
  • Released By: ADV Films UK
  • MSRP: �19.99
  • Running time: 100
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Disc Resolution: 480i/p (mixed/unknown)
  • Disc Encoding: MPEG-2
  • Series: Zone of Enders

Zone of the Enders Vol. #5

By Paul Jacques     January 06, 2004
Release Date: December 17, 2003


Zone of the Enders Vol. #5
© ADV Films UK


What They Say
Get ready for action as the war for Mars rears its ugly head. James Links is finding it no easier to keep his friends than it is to evade his enemies. And tearful reunions and departures bring the Links family closer to their ultimate fate. In this uncertain world there are surprises and setbacks, but the headstrong family bond is keeping the Links' defiant. They are determined to do the right thing not only for Orbital Frame Dolores and for Mars, but the whole galaxy as well

The Review!
This is the penultimate volume, so things should, and do, get very interesting.

Audio:
No fault found with either Japanese or English tracks- it's all good Dolby stereo. Have I ever mention that I don't like the opening track ("Zone of the Enders")? I did huh, okay, well you'll be interested to know I still don't like it (Bon Jovi has a lot to answer for). The closing track is "Ring on the World", and is really nice to listen to, a bit like a fairy tale love song (reviewer hugs Plushie).

Video:
Ah, once again the presentation is flawless, bright and pleasing to the eye. We still have the TV aspect ratio (you'd think no one had ever heard of wide screen).

Packaging:
The front cover (blue\grey) has the nutty Chief Inspector and his assistant, with a young Noel and the cool looking Mech in the background is Hathor. On the back we have four stills from the episodes with the usual production information. The single sheet insert shows Dolores being comforted by Mr. Raptor, with Rachel, Cindy and Raia. The disc itself is a blue\grey with a printed Hathor on the cover.

Menu:
Simple opening menu with Episode Selection, Language and Extras. All links worked although "Extras" leaves you in a bit of dead end.

Extras:
Good extras; the interviews with the VA's are enlightening and worth sitting through; the production and concept sketches are good to watch; we have Dolores Diary, which is always interesting to see what Dolores thinks about the situations she encounters; the information on orbital station is quite interesting; the usual clean Open & Close titles.

Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
Episode 19 starts with Rebecca, Axel and Rully being told to stand down their pursuit of Dolores by Naphth. Rebecca takes this very badly and looks on the turn of events as a disgrace. Meanwhile James takes a look around the virtual world of Dolores Battle Program in order to find out what Dolores really is, as she appears to have two personalities, one fluffy bunny, the other a killer.

Later the links family begin their infiltration of the Bufram Army base, in order to rescue their mother. With Dolores flying as distraction overhead, Leon and Noel sneak inside the base. Just when it looks as the plan is working Rebecca appears and engages Dolores & James in combat. After the fight, the Links family make their getaway from the battle-zone with their mother Rachel- get your hanky out for the big reunion scene at the end (sniff).

Episode 20 is one of those milestone episode, because we finally discover what Dolores is all about. It seems that Dolores was designed to be the Mars spearhead in taking over the orbital elevator. And that Dolores herself was built from the technology called Idolo. Idolo was an Orbital Frame that destroyed the Bufram Army base on Deimos awhile back. It transpires that the pilot of Idolo, called Radium Lavans, was thought to have been killed in the engagement, but is now believed to be one of the many people attempting to find Dolores. Dolores herself is named after Radium dead girlfriend. Of course Radium is now better know as... well that would be telling. Which just leaves everyone with the problem of the other Orbital Frame called Hathor (which is more powerful than Dolores).

Elsewhere on Mars, the anti Earth forces have gathered and make their attack strategy for the system wide war that will commence soon. The episode ends with Mars in a state of revolt, plus the Hathor makes an appearance in the sky with it's new pilot Radium Lavans.

Episode 21 sees Earth begin to mobilize it's armed forces in response to the Mars revolt, and a huge series battle ensues. Meanwhile the Links family decide that the best course of action is to try and evacuate the civilians caught in the crossfire of this crazy war. This course of action gives the nutty Chief Inspector a chance to catch up to them.

The final episode on this disc starts well, with more pitch battles between LEVs and Raptors. At the same time the Links family attempt to intercept the rebels shuttle that carries and army of Raptors into space (for the purpose of taking over the Orbital Elevator). Then it becomes apparent that some of the rebel forces have their own hidden agenda, and that agenda has been set by Radium Lavans and his sponsor. Finally we get to the Hathor - Dolores battle that has been looming on the horizon, and it's a battle that goes very badly for James and Dolores, very badly indeed. The story ends with Dolores broken on the ground, James knocked out and something very big and powerful leaving it's lair to join the fighting.

In summary- This series continues to roll out the plot at an even pace, and this volume very nicely lines up the plot for the series finale.

Features
Japanese Language Dolby 2.0,English Language Dolby 2.0,English Subtitles ,ADR session footage with Takehita Kayasu (Napth) & Yumiko Nakanishi (Rebecca) ,Dolores' Diary Part 2: Orbital Elevator ,Clean opening and closing animation ,Production sketches ,Conceptual artwork

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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