Bubblegum Crisis: Tokyo 2040 comes to an end with this third
double-disc volume in this series. Originally released as six single
discs, ADV has rereleased the series under the "Essential Anime" banner.
In doing so they've lowered the price significantly, and added some great
extras that weren't on the first release of the show.
Bubblegum Crisis Tokyo 2040 is a retelling and expansion of the
original OVA series Bubblegum Crisis. Some things are the
same, and others have changed, but the basic premise is still the same.
It has been 6 years since an earthquake devastated Tokyo, now known as
Megalocity, and much of the repairs have been done by 'boomers;' robots
to you and me. The boomers, created by the Genom Corporation, have
wormed their way into most aspects of society; they not only do heavy work
and manual labor, they also work in office buildings and restaurants.
The only problem is, sometimes boomers go berserk. When that happens,
the Knight Sabers leap into action. These four heroes are tough women
in form fitting battle suits strong enough to take on the biggest boomers.
They are rock singer Priss, computer hacker Nene Romanova, new member Linna
Yamazaki and leader Sylia Stingray.
If you've stayed with the series this far, you know things aren't good.
As this set begins, rouge boomers have been roaming the streets, and Megalocity
is all but deserted. Genom controls the media though, and they continue
to report that everything is fine!
The Knight Sabers, along with the remnants of the AD Police, plan an
attack on the Dragon Line, but the powerful Galatea takes control of it
and unleashes a new wave of giant boomers on a nearly defenseless city.
Not totally defenseless though, as the Knight Sabers don new hard suits.
Things progress at a rapid pace in this last third of the show.
It's actually hard to know how much to reveal without spoiling the plot.
Over these final eight shows, a lot of new hazards crop up, Galatea becomes
even more powerful, some mysteries are solved, and the show is wrapped
up in a satisfactory manner. This series is a pretty wild ride.
Looking back on the series, I really enjoyed it. The show starts
off at a medium pace but picks up speed after the first five or six episodes.
By the end of the series I didn't want to wait between episodes to see
how things wrapped up, and these double disc sets were nice in that respect.
This series was certainly different from the original Bubblegum Crisis.
Being a longer series, there was room for more background stories and a
more detailed plot. Both of these helped make this a fun and exciting
series that anime fans should make a point of checking out.
This two DVD set contains the final eight episodes of the show and comes
in a single width clear Amaray case with a reversible cover.
This boasts a new English 5.1 dub, as well as Japanese and Spanish language
tracks in stereo. I liked the original language track a little bit
better, mainly because I didn't care for the English version of Priss'
songs. The dub was actually good besides that one flaw, with the
actors managing to sync the lip movements fairly well. There was
some use of the soundstage, especially in the battles. Overall a
nice sounding disc.
The full frame video quality looked great. There are a lot of
dark areas, especially in a lot of the fight scenes, and the detail in
these areas is quite good. The colors of the boomers and the Knight's
battle armor come through bright and vivid giving the show a wide color
range. Digital artifacts were hardly noticeable. I was really
pleased with the way these discs looked.
The first disc in this set has an interview with the four actresses
who played the leads in the show. Unfortunately, the interviews were
done separately and then spliced together. I would have enjoyed it
a little more if they could have commented on each other's answers and
talked together. The format is pretty simple. A question flashes
up on the screen and then each actress appears and answers it. This
runs about 17 minutes in length.
The last tow episodes in the series have commentary tracks with the
actors who voice the main characters; Kelly Manison (Linna), Laura
Chapman (Sylia), Christine Auten (Priss), and Hilary Haag (Nene.)
They originally dub these five years ago, so the actors have a little perspective
on the show. While I don't generally enjoy anime commentaries, these
were generally fun.
There are also clean opening and closing animations.
The Essential Anime Collection is a great way for people to check out
titles that they may have missed, and getting two volumes of Bubblegum
Crisis 2040 for a retail price of less than $20 is a great deal.
I know people who were happy to get a single volume for that much when
it was originally released. The show itself is a fast paced roller
coaster ride, that is well worth checking out. Highly Recommneded.