Burst Angel reaches the halfway point with the third volume.
The series is fun, but there isn't that much to it. By this time
I was hoping that an overriding plot would have materialized, but it hasn't.
The characters haven't evolved very much and the stories don't seem to
be leading anywhere. Even so, it's worth a viewing.
In the not too distant future, Japan is a crime filled country where
it is legal to carry guns. In this violent future lives Tachibana Kyohei,
a young student who wants to earn some money so that he can go to France
to become a chef. He answers a want ad for a part time cook, and
finds himself working for four attractive, yet mysterious women who live
in a very large mobile trailer. There's Sei, the leader, Jo, the
grouchy fighter of the group, Meg, who doesn't seem to do much except become
a hostage, and the youngest, Amy, is a computer expert. It turns
out that these girls make their money by preforming hazardous jobs for
an unknown contract agent. They are good at what they do, but it
turns out that their mercenary lifestyle can also endanger their domestic
help. It isn't long before Kyohei is helping the Angels out on their
Sei visits her grandfather and discovers that he's arranged a marriage
for her. He wants to link their clan with one that broke off from
them years ago, and a marriage seems to be the best way. But the
man she's supposed to marry has other plans.
Amy gets an episode of her own next. While the others are off
relaxing, Amy and Kyohei go shopping in the bootleg district in town.
When she tries out some of the things she's scored though, someone hacks
into her computer, and Amy gets pissed. She tracks down the hackers,
but they aren't what she's expecting at all.
The volume ends with a story that is continued on the next volume.
Jo goes to Osaka for a job to protect a professional wrestler who's been
threatened. During his match his opponent turns into a giant bug,
which wasn't in the script. It turns out that this is an act of terrorism
by someone who wants to take over the whole town. The monster is
only the first step though, and this unknown person soon lets loose a giant
robot on the city. One that might be too much for the Burst Angels.
I enjoyed this volume more than the last one, but this series still
isn't going the way I had hoped. At the end of this volume we are
half way through the series and there still isn't a main plot, though one
in hinted at in episode 12. These stories are okay. They are
entertaining enough but they lack the meat that better series have.
There isn't anything mysterious in the show (or those aspects that are
have been glossed over) and there isn't anything that makes you want to
see the next episode. It's good fun, but nothing more.
There are a few things about the show that I just don't get. For
example, what's up with Kyohei? Why is he even in the show? The cook
is a nice guy, but he doesn't fit into the show at all. If he wasn't
there, the program would hardly change at all. He's not growing or
changing, his parts in the mission amount to him just tagging along, and
he isn't even a hostage, that's Meg's role. He seems to be totally
One thing I will give the series is that the animation is great.
Gonzo did this show, and the 3D CGI meshes seamlessly with the traditional
animation, something that Gonzo does better than anyone else. The
movement is fluid and they don't cut corners on the fight scenes.
A really good looking show.
This DVD contains episodes 9-12 of the series and comes in a clear keepcase
with reversible cover. There is also a 16 page booklet that has character
profiles and art from the series. It was a nice insert.
This time FUNimation didn't include a non-skipable trailer before the
This disc comes with the original Japanese language track as well as
an English dub, both in 5.1. I preferred the Japanese track, but
there wasn't anything wrong with the English dub. Both make use of
the full soundstage with a good amount of directional effects. I
thought that the voices that come from the rear speakers were mixed a little
high, but that wasn't a big deal. There are optional English subtitles
which sometimes overlap with text on screen, but only very rarely.
This is a recent show, and the anamorphic widescreen image looks really
good. The colors are strong with a good amount of detail: Images
waver as they are seen through the rising heat of a fire, and the glow
of a CRT display lights up Amy's face. The lines are tight and the
picture is clean. As far as digital defects go, I notice some light
aliasing in the background, but it was very minor. A very good looking
This disc has a nice amount of extras included on it.
First off is a commentary track to the tenth episode with ADR Director
Chris Bevins (who identifies himself this time), and actresses Alison Retzloff
(Amy) and Greg Ayres (Kyohei). Like the commentary on the previous
volume, they actually talk about the episode and why they enjoy it, and
it isn't a 'party' commentary track. Unfortunately there isn't a
lot of meat to the commentary. There are a lot of silence, and most
of their comments are pretty self evident. They don't really revel
anything new about the show. Even so, it wasn't an irritating track
like many anime commentaries are.
Then there are three more 'Bakuten (Burst Angel) Radio' selections included
on this disc, along with two more 'bonus tracks.' Each of these runs
about 15 minutes. I'm not sure what to make of these. They
two of the Japanese voice actresses from the show (Jo and Meg) chatting
about inconsequential things; their names, how old they think they look,
their favorite food, and racing to say tongue twisters. I found them
really dull. They are in Japanese, of course, with English subtitles.
There is also a textless opening and closing and trailers to other FUNimation
The most interesting bonus item was Mr. Stain. This 7-minute
CGI short was pretty amusing. The series is going to be released
in 2006, and this is a great way to get the word out about it. This
was the same episode that appears on Galaxy
Railways Vol. 2.
I enjoy this series, even though there isn't much too it. A typical
girls-with-guns show, there's a battle every episode and some light fan
service. I wish that the plot was a little deeper, and that this
series was telling an overriding story, but it's still worth watching if
you don't except too much. Recommended.