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Robotics;Notes Part 1 Blu-ray/DVD Combo Pack Review

Robotics;Notes Part 1 Blu-ray-DVD Combo Pack

“Robotics;Notes” is a well written anime series.

In the first 11 episodes of “Robotics;Notes” (AKA Part 1), viewers are introduced to geeky friends/students Kaito and Akiho who are initially the lone members of the Robot Research Club. Through this club, Akiho is dedicated to building a lifesize Gunvarrel robot (AKA GenBuild-1) which is based off of a mega popular anime series character. Kaito helps her out, but he’s more of a laidback fellow who enjoys messing around with technology and playing games like the mech fighting game Kill Ballad.

If you think the series is just about building a robot and video games, however, you’d be mistaken. ‘Notes’ is filled with subplots such as: Kaito and Akiho entering a robot (Tanegashi) in a Robo-One tournament in order to get funding to finish Gunvarrel, Kill Ballad’s creator (Kona AKA Frau), a fellow robo builder student (Subaru), a strange past accident (dubbed the Anemone-gou incident) in which Kaito and Akiho may or may not have been given powers, a mysterious AI girl (Airi) who seems to be tracking Kaito and Akiho, the mystery behind the never aired last episode of Gunvarrel, a shopkeeper (Doc) and his daughter Junna (who later becomes a member of the Robotics club), Akiho’s sister Misaki and her dark past, Misaki’s best friend Mizuka, JAXA (the aerospace agency), the shady Committee of the 300 group and their shocking plans, Ko Kimijima and his reports (not going to say anything about this character for it’s too spoilery), a potential sponsorship for GenBuild-1, and Kill Ballad game cheaters.

After seeing a few less than stellar anime series in the past few months (cough “We Without Wings” cough), “Robotics;Notes” feels like a breath of fresh air. In a mere 11 episodes, the writing staff crams in enough stories for at least 5 anime series while also skillfully weaving multiple storylines together (and I do mean multiple). Now, I’m not going to get into spoiler territory here out of respect for those who haven’t seen the series, but what makes ‘Notes’ so appeal is the fact that you really don’t know where the story is heading. At the start of the series, it seems it’s designed to be a robotics lovers dream, but as the show unfolds, deeper mysteries and storylines begin to unravel which takes the show to unexpected places. In fact, with each reveal that occurs, you’ll find yourself getting more and more hooked to the series. By the time episode 11 finishes, you’ll be aching for the remaining 11 episodes in the soon to be released Part 2 set to find out more answers about the Committee of the 300, the Kimijima Reports, among many other subplots.

Of course, it doesn’t hurt that the entire cast of characters are supremely well developed. There are no one dimensional or throwaway characters to be found here. Instead, you get layered characters that are harboring secrets (Misaki) or changing over the course of the series (Subaru).


Presentation: Widescreen 1080p. How does it look? The hi-def transfer offers up crisp colors for this anime series.

Audio Tracks: English Dolby TrueHD 5.1 and Japanese Dolby TrueHD 2.0. How do they sound? The English track is respectable as is the Japanese track. Obviously, the English dub has a bit more oomph to it with it being a 5.1 track.

* 6 character art cards.
* Trailers for “Akira,” “Appleseed XIII,” “Serial Experiments Lain,” “Jormungand,” “Dragon Ball Z,” “Chaos;Head,” “Steins;Gate,” “Robotics;Notes,” Anime Classics and Funimation.com.
* Commentary on episode 6 by Leah Clark and Monica Rial. Expect lots of giggling and loud/fast talking.
* Textless opening and closing songs.
* A U.S. trailer for “Robotics;Notes.”
* Commentary on episode 10 by Lindsay Seidel and Jarrod Greene. A much more involving track that contains discussions about the recording process, voice acting, school clubs, Akiho, and more.
* “Science Adventure Series Interview Part 1”- A nearly 19 minute extra in which Joel McDonald, J. Michael Tatum, and John Bergmeier talk about “Chaos;Head,” “Steins;Gate,” “Robotics;Notes,” their duties on the series, and various characters. More extras like this, please.

Overall Thoughts: It’s not hard to see why “Robotics;Notes” is receiving a lot of praise. It’s an anime series that is worth your time.


March 3, 2014 - Posted by | Blu-Ray review | , , ,

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