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Reviews » DVD Video Reviews » Gravion Zwei:Eye of the Storm Vol 1
Gravion Zwei:Eye of the Storm Vol 1
ADV Films // Unrated // March 8, 2005
List Price: $29.98 [Buy now and save at Amazon]
Review by John Sinnott | posted March 1, 2005 | E-mail the Author
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The Show:

Eiji, Toga, and the rest of the Gran Knights return for a second season of Gravion, entitled Gravion Zwei.  ("Zwei" being German for two.)  The first season was filled with cliches, gratuitous fan service and predictable plots, and this second series follows in the first's footsteps.   There isn't a lot of recap though, so you really should view the first series before you start on this one.

A little bit of time has passed since the ending of the first season.  The Zeravire, a giant alien species bent on the destruction of the Earth, have stopped their attacks for the time being.  During the lull, the EFA (Earth Federation Alliance) has developed and mass produced a model of the Gravion, referred to as Grand Troopers.  Training for the Gravion pilots has slacked off a little bit too, and Eiji spends his spare time gambling with the maids, and losing of course.  Things don't stay clam for long though, as the Zeravire renew their offensive and the Knights have to go into action again.

The attacks by the aliens are actually a minor part of the show.  Most of the time is taken up by situation comedy type situations.  In the second episode, several of Eiji's friends from school find Sandman's castle and get a tour.  The day ends with a picnic where several of the buxom females in the series get inebriated and start making passes at everyone.  In another show, the entire group goes to a hot springs spa where all the typical gags that have been done in every show from Tenchi Muyo to Love Hina are gone through one more time.   Of course, there's plenty of fan service in this episode, to the point where it get irratating.

This really isn't a lot to this series.  Characterization is replaced by fan service and action scenes take the place of plot development.  Each episode starts off with some situation that is supposed to be humorous, Eiji dressed as a maid doing the dishes for example, and then wraps up with an action scene.  Things unfold in a very predictable manner, and there seemed to be even less plot in these episodes than in the first series.

There was very little continuity in this season too.  The search for Eiji's brother has all but been forgotten, and the Grand Troopers, that start off the first episode don't even make an appearance after the first five minutes.   The way they were presented, I had assumed that they would play a big part in the series, but they just fell by the wayside.

The dialog is so bad in parts that it is unintentionally funny.  Lines like "Become the fangs that gnaw at evil." sound like they belong in a pulp novel from the 40's more than a current anime.  Sandman's pithy observations on life are also laughable:  "True friendship is the greatest power, strong enough to vanquish even the greatest foe" is just plain stupid.

Thin plots, lousy humor and bad dialog make this a fairly forgettable set of shows.

The DVD:


Audio:

Like most anime that is put out nowadays, this disc offers the choice of a stereo Japanese track with optional English subtitles or an English dub in 5.1. I alternated between tracks as I watched the show, and I had a slight preference for the original language track, but thought the English dub was fine. The English track was a little more full, but it wasn't as powerful as I was hoping. They didn't make full use of the subwoofer channel during the fight scenes. The English track did have more punch than the Japanese track did, just not as much as I was expecting. Both tracks sounded fine, with no distortion or other defects.

Video:

Like the previous series, the video was presented with a 1.33:1 aspect ration and looked pretty good. The image was still fairly soft, but the colors were bright and accurate. There were only a few instances of aliasing, a digital artifact that usually plagues animation, but no other major defects. A nice looking DVD.

Extras:

This disc includes a clean opening and closing, a series of character profiles and design sketches.   The biggest extra is a 16 minute interview with the English voice cast.  They talk about their take on the characters and what they like about the show.   There are also several trailers.

Final Thoughts:

This second series of Gravion isn't any better than the first.  If anything, there is even less continuity and plot than there was in the first series.  They have forgotten about the mystery of Eiji's sister that was one of the only interesting aspects of the first season, and made the shows more episodic.  If you've seen the first series, this is just more of the same.  Rent it.
 

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