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Shiki Part 1 Blu-ray/DVD Combo Pack Review

While a bit on the slow side, “Shiki” is more interesting than the usual anime series.

In the first 12 episodes of Shiki, we are introduced to the citizens of Sotoba Village and the puzzling goings on there. The first episode focuses on a teen girl named Megumi who we learn has a crush on Natsuno (a former city boy) and has big dreams of getting out of the small village. Initially, you think she’s going to be the main character until she dies at the end of the first episode. From there on out, the story switches focus to characters like Natsuno, Toshio (the hospital director), and the mysterious Kirshiki family who move into a giant mansion. Afterwards, the bulk of this batch of episodes involves the investigations into the dead bodies piling up and the odd anemia symptoms people have been contracting. Is it a disease? Are the Kirshiki’s involved? Are there vampires?

“Shiki” starts off strong with an attention grabbing first episode that does a fine job of setting the tone and the storylines to follow. Unfortunately, the series slows down after that. The 5 poorly paced middle episodes devote too much time to Toshio’s investigations and there’s simply not enough forward movement in the story. Luckily, episode 7 makes up for the sluggish pacing when we (the viewer) start to get more details about what is really going on and start to see former friends becoming enemies (you’ll see when you watch it).

With so many anime series feeling like copies of one another, it’s nice to find a series with a unique setting and, more importantly, a different tone. This is very much like a “Twin Peaks” esque anime series in that it can be atmospheric, creepy, and even a little weird. I’m definitely intrigued to see where this series goes next and I’m sure fellow viewers will be as well. Note: Part 2 is also available on Blu-ray.


The series, which is presented in widescreen 1080p, really shines on Blu-ray. The hi-def transfer adds depth to the background environments and the village while also making the colors look crisper than the DVD version.

The Blu-ray discs contains English Dolby TrueHD 5.1 and Japanese Dolby TrueHD 2.0 audio tracks. The English dub is superior in terms of audio quality, but the dub is only tolerable. The Japanese track has the better voice acting cast.

* Trailers for “Dragon Age: Dawn Of The Seeker,” “Trinity Blood,” “Ghost Hunt,” “.Hack//Quantum,” “Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood,” “Dragon Ball Z Kai,” “Panty And Stocking With Garterbelt,” “D.Gray-Man,” “Black Butler,” and Funimation.com/
* A bland commentary on episode 1 English ADR director/voice actor and 3 English dub voice actors.
* Textless opening and closing songs.
* 4 preview featurettes which are basically clips/story summaries.
* Episode 12 commentary by English ADR Director, a voice actor and two voice actresses. Better than the commentary before, but still not worth your time.

*DVD Copy.

June 19, 2012 - Posted by | Blu-Ray review | , , ,

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