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DVD Review

DVD cover

Samurai Deeper Kyo
Volume 4


Starring (voice): Katsuyuki Konishi, Yui Horie, Akio Suyama and Akira Ishida
RRP: £15.99
Certificate: 12
Available 04 January 2010

Japan in the year 1600 was a war torn island full of warlords. At the climax of the Battle of Sekigahara, Kyoshiro Mibu and Demon Eyes Kyo are ready for their final confrontation when they are rudely interrupted by the arrival of a meteorite. In the ensuing explosion both warriors disappear and are presumed dead. However four years have passed and Kyoshiro is very much alive, and plying a living as a medicine seller, when he is confronted by Yuya, a bounty hunter on the trail of Kyo. In the ensuing fight with a demon it becomes evident that Kyo’s spirit is inside Kyoshiro and is claiming squatter’s rights...

Samurai Deeper Kyo: Vol 4 (2002) continues the Japanese medieval action adventure directed by Junji Nishimura and based on a loose adaptation of the original manga by Akimine Kamijyo. Now that I have seen all four volumes that make up the show my only reaction is: "What the hell was that all about?" I haven’t gone off a show this quick since season four of Naruto. For the completist of you out there the final disc contains episodes 21 to 26 - The Demonic Mibu Castle, The Machine Made Dolls, Scorching Ecstasy, Last Muramasa Awakening, That One That Surpasses a Tach and The Ballad of the Samurai.

Between the synopsis and the chapter titles it will be no surprise that the fight has come full circle with the original protagonists finally facing off against each other to finish their original duel. The show still insists on using too many almost static shots and, whilst I have said in the past this was most probably done for artistic reasons rather than money, it does make the show look like it was made with so-so flash animation.

As the storytelling has been lacklustre at best I really couldn’t give a fig who won in the end just as long as the show ended. Let’s hope there are no OVA’s lurking out there, waiting to be released.

The disc comes with options for either English or Japanese 2.0 with optional subtitles. Extras on the disc consist of a message for fans (1 min, 39 sec) with cast and crew wishing you well and asking you to watch the thing to its end - except one bloke who keeps going on about how many great anime shows are out there and repeats this a number of times before he remembers to mention his own show. Very funny. Next up are some Outtakes (18 min, 32 sec) with the English dub crew screwing around with the audio track. Some of it is funny, honestly they should have done the whole show like this. The disc wraps up with trailers for other shows.

So there you have it. Can’t say I liked it... actually I can’t say I liked it at all, but given that they left a message for their fans I’m sure both of you will buy this disc.


Charles Packer

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