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Get Backers Vol. 7- Venus Interrupted
The seventh volume of The Get Backers wraps up the Venus di Milo storyline, and while it ran a lot longer than I would have preferred, it ended in a nice way. This volume also has a pair of stand alone shows that are really good and make up for the slow beginning of the disc. After the incredibly long Limitless Fortress story that ran through a few volumes, I'm glad they are going back to shorter stories. That is this show's strength, as this volume illustrates.
The Get Backers are a pair of young guys, Ban and Ginji, who run a business retrieving stolen or lost objects. Business isn't very good right now. They live in their car, and have run up a huge tab at a local restaurant. Even giving their lowly standing, they are quite good at their job. Once they take on a job, these goofy guys always recover the object they are sent after.
Part of the reason for this amazing success rate is that both members of the team have superpowers. Ginji is a human electric eel, who can generate a powerful electric charge with his hands, and Ban has a 'jag-on' the ability to create a powerful illusion for up to a minute. With these powers, and a stubborn streak that doesn't allow them to give up, the Get Backers are able to recover just about anything.
This volume picks up where the previous one left off with Ban and Ginji in the middle of a case. They've been hired to recover the arms to the Venus di Milo. The appendages have supposedly been discovered, and are to be auctioned off, but first they have to be placed on an exact replica of the famous statue to make sure they are the real arms.
Of course the person who has the arms has hired a protection service to make sure they arrive safely, a service that has gotten the best of the Get Backers once. There is another hitch too: the replica statue that the arms are to be placed on is what is really valuable. It has been made out of a very rare and incredibly expensive drug.
The last two episodes on this disc are stand alone shows that were a lot of fun. First off the Getbackers get into a big argument and break up, but it's only an act to throw their target off balance as they take on a job to recover a 1000 carat diamond. The only problem is that he isn't fooled.
Then a little girl with a very rare blood type needs a transfusion, but the blood she needs has been stolen. Ban and Ginji promise to recover it, but they don't realize that Dr. Jekyll has been hired to transport the stolen fluid.
I really like the stand alone episodes and short story arcs better than the long stories. The Venus di Milo story had a good beginning and the last chapter was great, but it dragged a lot in the middle episodes. They were filled with fights that seemed to be thrown in just to pad out the story. As I mentioned, the ending was very good and made up for a lot, but it would have been much stronger at 3 episodes rather than 5.
The last pair of shows were really good and reminded me why I like the show so much. These single serving episodes have a good mix of humor, action, and drama, and the stories are pretty lean, without a lot of extraneous padding. The scene in the end of the last episode on this disc, where Ginji is recalling all of the people that he's seen die while they were young, and lets the villains know that there's no way he's going to let them get away with the stolen blood is one of the best scenes on the disc. Overall these make up for the first two shows that felt like padding.
This DVD presents episodes 31-35 on a single DVD that comes in an Amaray case with an insert listing the titles of the episodes and the extras.
This DVD offers the choice of the original Japanese in stereo, or a 5.1 English dub. I viewed the show with both soundtracks and they were both good. There was some problems with the English track though. At the beginning of the first episode the music is way too loud when compared to the dialog. This evens out after a few minutes. Aside from that, the 5.1 dub was more dynamic than the Japanese track, with a little more strength to the bass. The English voice actors did a good job, putting feeling into the characters without making them sound goofy like some dubs. The rear speakers are used to good effect.
The anamorphic widescreen image looked pretty good. The colors were bright and the image was sharp. There were some digital defects with aliasing in the background being the most noticeable. Fine lines tend to shimmer when the camera pans over them, and there was some cross colorization in the few black and white scenes. These weren't distracting and this is still a good looking DVD.
This DVD includes clean opening and closing animations along with an interview with Christopher Loweless (Hyouko), Michael Mergen (Natsuhiko and Yukihiko), and Adan Sultan (Kait.). It lasts over 14 minutes and the actors are asked fairly standard questions: how they got their start in acting and what they think of their characters etc.
The Getbackers is a hit of miss series, and this volume is mostly good. The longer story arcs tend to drag in the middle, though the beginning and ending chapters are always very enjoyable. This volume wraps up the Venus di Milo story line in a very nice way, and presents two good stand alone shows, which make it a very enjoyable disc. Recommended.