DVD Talk
Release List Reviews Shop Newsletter Forum DVD Giveaways Blu-Ray Advertise
Reviews & Columns
Reviews
DVD
TV on DVD
Blu-ray
Ultra HD
International DVDs
Theatrical
Video Games

Features
Collector Series DVDs
Easter Egg Database
Interviews
DVD Talk Radio
Feature Articles

Columns
Anime Talk
DVD Stalk
DVD Savant
High-Def Revolution
Silent DVD

discussion forum
DVD Talk Forum
Resources
DVD Price Search
Customer Service #'s
RCE Info
Links

DVDTalk Info
Review Staff
About DVD Talk
Advertise
Newsletter Subscribe
Join DVD Talk Forum
DVD Talk Feeds


Sponsored Links

Search: For:
Reviews » DVD Video Reviews » Heavy Gear: Battle for the Badlands (Vol. 2)
Heavy Gear: Battle for the Badlands (Vol. 2)
Columbia/Tri-Star // PG-13 // August 13, 2002
List Price: $24.95 [Buy now and save at Amazon]
Review by Earl Cressey | posted August 18, 2002 | E-mail the Author
Buy from Amazon.com
C O N T E N T
V I D E O
A U D I O
E X T R A S
R E P L A Y
A D V I C E
Recommended
E - M A I L
this review to a friend
P R I N T
Printer Friendly
After viewing The Dragon's Shadow, I launched into Battle for the Badlands, which presents episodes 7, 9, 10, 11, and 12 of the Heavy Gear series. Episodes 6 and 8 were not included, as only 26 of the 40 episodes were delivered and aired, with the other fourteen, 6 and 8 among them, on hold for sale later. Honestly, as the first nine episodes can stand alone, their exclusion is not really evident.

Heavy Gear is set on the world Terra Nova in the year 6132 AD. Battles between the north and south are fought between 'gears in contests of skill. Two teams compete in the tournaments: the Shadow Dragons, consisting of six members (Marcus, Sebastian, Zerve, Dirx, Sonja, and Tachi), and the Vanguard of Justice, which consists of five (Major Wallis, Rank, Yoji, Serge, and Groonz).

After defeating Major Wallis in the Heavy Gear tournament, Marcus Rover fulfills his dream of becoming the Heavy Gear champion and ace pilot. His success, however, is short-lived, as a surveillance tape of him sabotaging the arena is leaked to the commission. Suspended from the league, Marcus is forced to watch his teammates from the sidelines, but with a little help from his uncle, he soon rejoins the battle. But Colonel Rika of the Northern Vanguard is determined to have Marcus on her side or out of the way, and to that end, she kidnaps his uncle and holds his hometown of Orem hostage. Now Marcus must find a way to save his uncle and free his town…without his 'gear or the Dragons.

With episode twelve, I'm hopeful the series will switch more to the political struggle between the North and South, rather than focus on tournaments and duels every episode. While to some degree entertaining, these have become a tad tiresome and repetitious, especially when you watch ten episodes in one day. However, I am curious to see where the series goes from here, now that Marcus is an ace 'gear pilot and the undisputed leader of the Shadow Dragons.

Video:
Heavy Gear is presented in 1.78:1 anamorphic widescreen. If you thought the CGI in Roughnecks was incredible, just wait till you see Heavy Gear. The animation is much smoother and crisper in appearance, as well as being much more detailed. The transfer presents the show almost flawlessly, with few, if any, print flaws present.

Audio:
Heavy Gear is presented in Dolby Digital 5.1 in English and Dolby 2.0 Surround in Spanish. As with Roughnecks, the 5.1 surround track surprised me, considering Heavy Gear was originally a TV show. While not as dynamic as the tracks in Roughnecks, the surrounds do stay active, especially the front channels, which do feature some split surround effects. Dialogue throughout the episodes is crisp and clean, with no distortion that I could detect. Subtitles are also available in English, Spanish, and French.

Extras:
Following in the footsteps of the Roughnecks DVDs, the main extras on the disc are the two screen-specific audio commentaries, a filmmaker's commentary and a technical commentary. Both are hosted by Audu Paden and feature rotating participants.

The filmmakers' commentary includes Mark Seidenberg (Story Editor, Writer, Developer), Mark Hoffmeier (Story Editor, Writer, Developer), Alan Caldwell (Director), Michael Chang (Director), Ray Leonard (Sound Mixer), and Bruce King (Editor). The participants discuss the directorial process, the editing process, reused animation, and why you never see Draven from the front. Quite a bit of information on this track can also be found on Volume 1's commentary, however.

The technical commentary features several members of the Mainframe animation team. The participants discuss the process of bringing the series to life through animation, and the challenges associated with that task.

Also rounding out the disc are an extensive conceptual art gallery and trailers for the Roughnecks series, Cowboy Bebop, and Metropolis.

Summary:
Those who enjoyed the first volume or fans of the series from TV should definitely pick up volume two, as the story sees the resolution of a few plot points and presents a couple new challenges for the Shadow Dragons. Like Volume 1, Volume 2's DVD again boasts a fantastic audiovisual presentation and some great extras.

Popular Reviews
1. Aladdin (2019) (4K Ultra HD)
2. Polyester
3. The Image Book
4. Reap the Wild Wind
5. Tolkien
6. Godzilla: King of the Monsters
7. Aladdin (1992) (4K Ultra HD)
8. Kind Hearts and Coronets
9. Mirage
10. Who Saw Her Die?


Sponsored Links
DVD Blowouts
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
7.
Alien [Blu-ray]
Buy: $19.99 $9.99
8.
9.
10.
Sponsored Links
Release List Reviews Shop Newsletter Forum DVD Giveaways Blu-Ray Advertise
Copyright 2019 DVDTalk.com All Rights Reserved. Legal Info, Privacy Policy, Terms of Use