Media | Anime Releases | November 20th, 2007: A big week with what might be the first American "anime" Iíve ever seen. Wait, thereís that Spielberg one, too. Prepared with the help of The Digital Bits and cover art courtesy of Amazon.

Roundup by Mightyblue | Posted November 19, 2007

Pick of the week

Robotech: The Shadow Chronicles
So, yeah, Iím aware that I kinda lambasted Robotech a while back, mostly as a knee jerk reaction to nostalgia and the fact the original, unadulterated series it was based on makes a lot more sense, storywise. But since Harmony Gold still retains the rights to the ďRobotechĒ name after all these years, they felt the time was right to develop a direct sequel to the final "New Generation" arc of the series -- also known by its Japanese title, Genesis Climber Mospeada -- called The Shadow Chronicles. This is the first of apparently several titles in this little endeavor. The movie itself won a bunch of awards at a couple film festivals, so it must be fairly decent. It comes in both a two-disc limited edition (pictured) and the more mundane single-disc regular edition.

The Other Stuff

Death Note: Vol. 1
Death Note is one of the most popular things to come out of Japan since Dragon Ball and the original manga/anime craze first hit America a few years back. Both this TV series and the movies are based on a manga being published by Viz -- a real multimedia sensation. The story follows a genius sociopath named Light who steals a book called the Death Note from a shinigami -- essentially the Grim Reaper in Western parlance -- and discovers the book possesses the power to kill anyone whose name is written within it. The anime is far superior to the movies, but neither lives up to the quality of the original manga. Ain't that how it always goes? This still makes for a worthy addition to any library, though.

Trinity Blood: Chapter II Viridian Collection
This seems oddly familiar. Maybe because the series was just released as a box set last week, and now Funimationís releasing it as part of their reprint collection? Well, anyway, Trinity Blood is a show about vampires -- a special kind of vampire that feeds on regular vampires. Par for the genre, the Catholic Church is the big anti-vamp force with the vampire kingdom serving as the vaguely-appointed bad guys. Itís a solid, well-produced series, but it falls apart a bit at the end. Anime? Falling apart at the end? Shocking. A good rental for action or vampire lovers, though.

Ramen Fighter Miki: Vol. 2 Tonkatsu Tactics
Who... who thinks up the names for these things? But maybe there's a method behind the madness: besides the name, Iím not entirely sure what this show is or what's notable about it. The original Japanese title translates into something like ďInvincible Poster Girl,Ē and the show is apparently a kind of slapsticky action/martial arts show trying to cover a lot of bases, and in most cases does this very poorly. Needless to say, you'll want to skip it.

King of Bandit Jing: Seventh Heaven OVA
Seventh Heaven is the OAV sequel to the original thirteen-episode King of Bandit Jing TV series. The episodic nature of the series means that you can enjoy the movie without having seen the show, though familiarity certainly doesn't hurt. The OAV traces Jingís quest to steal rare treasure from the highest-security prison in the world. It also delves into his backstory somewhat -- a topic ignored in the TV series. Of course, it retains the series' surreal, non-sequitur art and story telling, making it another solid recommendation.

Anime Boxsets and Other Things of a Swaggy Nature

On the swag front his week are three different unnecessary, overpriced versions packs of Death Note Vol. 1. One comes with the first volume of the manga as a pack-in; the second includes a calendar; the third contains a miniature Ryki figurine. The week's other swag set belongs to Red Garden for its second volume. And in the "pricey but with good reason" corner, we have a bunch of whole-series and full-season boxsets: the Fullmetal Alchemist Season One Part 2 and Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex collections take the fore, with KARAS Complete and Fruits Basket Viridian Collection rounding out the rest. If youíve been considering checking out Death Note, the manga pack-in version would actually be a worthwhile swag edition; as for collections, both the FMA and GitS boxes are solid choices.

The Other "Other" Stuff

  • Trinity Blood Chapter I: Viridian Collection [reprint] (rental)
  • Tsubasa Reservoir Chronicle Vol. 5: Hunters and Prey (rental)
  • Case Closed Movie: 14th Target (rental)
  • Hare + Guu Deluxe OAV, Vol. 2 (hit)
  • Red Garden Vol. 2: Breaking the Girls (rental)

Nostalgia triumphs again, or something like that. What I'm saying it, you should at least rent The Shadow Chronicles. Itís got Mark Hamill and Chase Masterson doing voice work, for crying out loud. How much more '80s can you get? Also, someone must have locked Sturgeon in his closet this week, since itís not half bad. Discuss it on the Forums!