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Anime: Burst Angel DVD #4 "Hired Gun"
Friday, October 21, 2005
Age Rating: 14+ (US Recommended)
Company: Funimation
Genre: Action/Mecha
Running Time: 100 mins
DVD Region 1


Ever had the feeling you were being watched?..


Hooray another explosive volume of Burst Angel has arrived offering more vast amounts of mecha pulling down cities and pointless bloody violence. Four episodes here (bringing us to the conclusion of Episode 16).The DVD offers pretty much what all the previous volumes have so far as Sei's gang of mercenaries slaughter blast their way through their enemies with a bit of help from the katana wielding officer Takane and her motorcycle.

Three plot and one filler episode grace this disc as the main story really gets into swing (thankfully). We pick up where we left off last time with Osaka being held ransom by a huge evil cybot! And a mutants brain inside it. Oh noes! Jo and Takane are quick to get into action here and the episode remains purely in action territory as the city is demolished by the girls in their respective modes of transport. It is certainly flash and cool with a capital C, the same pointless fun Burst Angel effortlessly delivers each time. It is a thrilling and a satisfying conclusion to the casts escapades in Osaka. The second episode on the disc deals with Jo and Meg meeting for the first time in what appears to be New York. The whole episode is done in a rather gloomy and dejected style , with mainly greys and browns used for the colour palette. It's actually a nice touch giving this story heavy episode a gritty air to it as revelations are made about Jo's past (which I wont spoil for you). The action that is in the episode is slick and rather gory as Jo already has her fair share of enemies.



The third episode on the disc enters "pure filler" territory in that its a obligatory swimsuit episode where the girls relax at a holiday resort's grand opening. Sei's outfit here verges on indecent exposure and I had to laugh at the sheer ridiculousness of it. Lots of light comedy in this episode with the hapless Kyo having his life made a living hell by both Jo and Leo the latter proving himself a rather clever and amusing character. Of course its hard for the girls to enjoy their holiday with a giant squid involved. Finally the last episode of the disc which ends on an obligatory cliffhanger is certainly one of the best in the series so far. It takes a sinister and dark tone (which is a refreshing change) as Jo is finally faced by an opponent who seems scarily skilled as well as being eminently psychotic. The truth is this character appears to have been watching her from the first time Jo met Meg, biding her time in the background. It's time Maria put in her first appearance...

In a show that doesn't really give character develop the time of day this disc is suprisingly heavy on it. Leo gets a lot more screentime than previously and he manages to be pretty nifty with weapons as well as proving to be great comic relief with his continual "be a man comments" to Kyo and other male cast members. It's nice to see a character that is actually pretty fun to watch get more screentime and he has certainly grown on me since his minor appearance previously. Jo and Meg get some development to in a rather sweet scene on a rock gazing out to sea. Jo declares that the only reason she fights is for Meg which causes Meg to cuddle up against her and fall asleep, prompting perhaps the first proper smile from Jo in the entire series. It was a good "awwwww" kinda scene. Yay. Finally with the introduction of Maria she gets some base development here, to put it simply she is a psycho of the highest order and likes to slaughter innocents (including children) for fun. It's great to have such a psychotic lead baddie making her debut and she will definitely be featuring more in the remaining 8 episodes.



This is certainly the strongest disc in the series so far, and I look forward to the conclusion of the show. Roll on more episodes.

This is yet another great show animation wise with GONZO blending both the CG and animation better than they do with Last Exile. Everything is seamlessly put together here perfection. Audio wise both dub and sub tracks for the series are good (although I watched this disc subbed with a brief look at the dub). The "Southern American" Osakan accents in the dub are actually pretty good for once with Takane sounding rather impressive as she speeds about on her bike. This disc certainly is fantastic in terms of extras, audio commentary the totally insane Japanese audio drama's (The Pretzels Present Sweet Memory! I hope turn up as I have yet to listen to the dramas and that's one of the most amusing parts from previous discs). Impressive packaging as usual Jo getting the cover and Sei and Maria getting the reverse side, Sei gets the disc art and theres a fairly lengthy booklet full of artwork and information.



Overall Scores

Episode Contents: 8.5/10
It's not perfect as its fairly brainless, but its a hell of a lot of fun.

Animation: 9.5/10
Awe inspiring stuff at times.

Audio: 8/10
I love the sub/dub tracks, although some of the music grates a little.

Extras: 9/10
The way all extras should be.

Packaging: 8/10
The best you can get for a single disc without free gifts.
posted by Mangaminx On Friday, October 21, 2005  
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