Gun Sword
Volume 3 - Separate Ways

Starring (voice): Takanori Hoshino, Houko Kuwashima and Kyousei Tsukui
RRP: 19.99
Certificate: 12
Available 09 July 2007

The land of Endless Illusion is a lawless place where heaven and hell collide, spewing forth degenerates of every type. The land is full of Coleridge dreams, whilst the urban areas are morally corrupt and violent. Through this land roams a wanderer with a past. Van is looking of The Claw Man, the man who killed his wife. His lonely existence is changed when he meets Wendy, a young girl who has lost both her parents and her brother. Together they travel Endless Illusion in search of answers...

Volume Three of Gun Sword contains episodes nine through twelve. The show remains entertaining with a nice balance within each show of fights and plot progression.

Episode nine, Carmen Goes Home, and finally a show which concentrates on Carmen 99 as the quest takes them to her home town of Trinolia. Carmen visits Hayeta, her best friend, whose father had taken her in after Carmen's parents had died. The mysterious woman, who was briefly glimpsed at the beginning of the episode, turns out to be working for the Claw. It seems that Carmen's old friend is not so innocent as she first appeared, growing plants which are toxic enough to kill the whole village.

Carmen's confrontation with Hayeta in the secret garden is quite poignant as Hayeta accuses Carmen of running away from the town instead of facing their mutual problems. The girls finally confront the reality that they hate, as much as love, each other.

Episode ten: Thank You Ocean. Van and Wendy move onto a seaside town, which makes its living in selling junk recovered from its sunken foundations. While Van and Wendy are waiting for their train to arrive a freight train is attacked and destroyed blocking all train traffic. Their problem is solved when they run into Vivian who offers them transport out of town, and a lot of cash, if they will work as protection while she raises treasure from the ocean floor.

This was a deliberately comedic episode which helped balance the rather personal and intense previous story. The show has some nice underwater action scenes.

Episode eleven: Where the Goodbyes Are. What should have been a much anticipated meeting, between Wendy and her brother, does not go exactly as Wendy imagined when her brother declares that he has no intention of returning home as he has no desire to take on the responsibility of always looking after her. Of course, this is a turning point for Wendy, after all she had only joined Van in order to rescue her brother. Now that is no longer a consideration will Wendy continue to travel with Van?

Episode twelve: The Days of No Return. The tensions within the group are reaching fever pitch - for many of them the reasons which they had stayed together no longer existed. Although the show concentrates on realigning the broken alliance, there is also a lot of information about what the battle suits are and where they come from.

Extras are not too shabby for an anime disc especially the Gun Sword-San, which gives you two more very funny pieces taking the mickey out of the show. Throw in the second CD commercial, an art gallery and some trailers and that's your lot. Audio is also a little above average with a choice of English or Japanese DTS or Japanese Dolby Digital.

Charles Packer

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