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Sengoku Basara: Samurai Kings- The Complete Series and Eden Of The East- The Complete Series Blu-ray Reviews

 

A unique plot makes “Eden Of The East” worth watching.

“Sengoku Basara: Samurai Kings” is more concerned with action than plot and characters.

“Sengoku Basara: Samurai Kings” is a 13 episode anime series based on the Capcom video game series of the same name. Set in feudal Japan during the Sengoku period, the series revolves around a number of warring clans. The bulk of the series sees several clans putting aside their differences (namely the Date and Takeda armies) in order to defeat the power hungry Devil King Oda Nobunaga from ruling. Plots involve other clans (Akechi, Azai), betrayals, injuries, family members, alliances, love interests, and lots and lots of fighting.

If you like video games and action anime series then ‘Sengoku’ is for you because this series really feels like a video game. Heck, the series could essentially be cut scenes from a ‘Sengoku’ video game because it’s virtually all action oriented. Characters are constantly bursting into crazy, over the top, supernatural esque fights (sometimes with big weapons) while constantly spouting dialogue about fighting/conquering (which is oddly a mixture of modern and old time speak). Sure, there’s some clan centric plots and the occasional weird comic moments, but the show is basically one big series of never ending battles. Personally, I expect more more from a show than that.

The widescreen 1080p picture quality is flawless. The animation is stunning here. The colors are crisp and clear and the environments (especially the forest, gravel and blue sky) really stand out. The animation and picture quality are unquestionably the best thing about the Blu-ray set.

This Blu-ray set contains English Dolby TrueHD 5.1 and Japanese Dolby TrueHD 2.0 tracks. The English track explodes with life. The sword fights, dialogue, music, sound f/x are all putting the speakers to work. The Japanese track contains better voice acting, but it lacks the punch of the 5.1 track.

Extras:
* “Sengoku Basara: Samurai Heroes” video game trailer.
* Trailers for “Eden Of The East,” “Samurai 7,” “Nabari No Ou,” “Corpse Princess,” “Oh! Edo Rocket,” “Trigun,” “Linebarrels Of Iron,” “Devil May Cry,” and “Full Metal Panic? Fumoffu.”
* Textless opening and closing songs.

* 7 goofy mini-episodes of the anime “Sengoku Basara Chosokabe Motochika-Kun And Mori-Kun” that is done in a different animation style.

And now for something completely different…”Eden Of The East.” After being put off by the bland ‘Sengoku,’ I was pleasantly surprised by this weird 11 episode mystery, conspiracy thriller. Without getting into spoiler territory, the show focuses on a college grad named Saki who bumps into a young man who doesn’t know who he is. His memory has evidently been wiped and the only items he is carrying is a gun and a cell phone. The man receives calls from someone named Juiz who gives him instructions every now and then. The rest of the series primarily focuses on the mysterious young man trying to discover who he is and what he is supposed to do. Viewers can expect there to be plots/subplots regarding large amounts of money, 12 people like the mysterious young man, a deadly and mysterious game known as Salecao, a recycling club, a killer, a missile attack, and missing people.

I know I was being vague in my description above, but honestly, I’d rather not reveal too many plot details as it’s better to know relatively little about the show in advance. Part of the fun of the show is seeing how the odd series of events unfold throghout the 11 episodes. One thing I will say is that ‘Eden’ is definitely an unpredictable show. It’s not what I expected nor does it turn out how I expected but I find that refreshing. I also like the fact that the series has a set story arc and doesn’t waste time with pointless, padded episodes. In fact, one can argue that the series is possibly too short (although I understand there are two films). Another refreshing element is that the series is very focused on character most notably Saki and the mysterious young man who is later known as Akira. The characters really have great chemistry together.

Summary: If you’re tired of the same old, same old, check out “Eden Of The East.” It’s not perfect storytelling, but is is certainly fresh, engaging, and interesting.

“Eden Of The East” is yet another beautiful show. From the colors to the environments (such as the cityscapes in Washington D.C.), this is a gorgeous looking show. The series is presented in widescreen 1080p.

English Dolby TrueHD 5.1 and Japanese Dolby TrueHD 5.1 audio tracks are included here. The English track is easily one of the best I’ve heard as the English dub voice work is top notch. Likewise, the Japanese track is also noteworthy and thankfully in 5.1!

Extras:
* Trailers for “Casshern,” “Full Metal Panic,” “Trigun,” “Corpse Princess,” “Hetalia Axis Powers,” “Darker Than Black,” “Dragon Ball Z Kai,” “Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood,” “Oh! Edo Rocket,” and “Linebarrels Of Iron.”
* TV spot, promotional video, and textless closing song.
* Interviews with composer Kenji Kawai, art director Yusuke Takeda, directors Kenji Kamiyama and Mamoru Oshii, voice actors Ryouhei Kimura and Saori Hayami, and character designer Chica Umino. Nice to see some extras that go into all sorts of elements of a show on a Funimation release.

October 24, 2010 - Posted by | Blu-Ray review | ,

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