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DVD Review

DVD cover

Black Lagoon
Barrage 2 - Volume 1


Starring (voice): Daisuke Namikawa, Megumi Toyoguchi, Hiroaki Hirata, Mami Koyama and Tsutomu Isobe
RRP: £15.99
Certificate: 15
Available 08 September 2008

The seas of Southeast Asia can be a perilous place, especially with the likes of the mercenary PT boat The Black Lagoon - manned by Dutch, Revy and Benny - roaming the high seas. The Lagoon Company are not the sort of people that you would want to mess with and certainly not the sort of people that meek and mild company man, Rokuro Okajima thought he would end up joining, but having been hunted by his employers Rok has no option except to join the privateers...

Black Lagoon: Barrage 2 - Volume 1 sees the second, and last, season of this testosterone pumped action show set in the south China seas. This disc holds episodes thirteen through sixteen.

Episode thirteen, The Vampire Twins Comen: Roanapur has always been a haven for low lives, but not anymore. The Punisher has come to town and is systematically killing off the city's crime bosses and anyone who gets in their way. Not happy to just sit and take it, the bosses put up a massive reward on what turns out to be a couple of children. With money on offer the Lagoon Company try and work out how they can profit from the current crisis. With the whole town gearing up for a bloodbath the kids revel in the blood that they have spilt and contemplate killing the whole city.

Episode fourteen, Bloodspot Fairytale, and the Romanian children’s random acts of violence continue. Hotel Moscow discovers that the kids had been kidnapped to star in child pornography, and when they were finally sold on they were force to kill for entertainment. Balalaika organises her men to hunt and kill the kids, but Hansel and Gretel are not so easily killed.

Episode fifteen, Swan Song at Dawn: With most of their strategies coming to nothing Balalaika offers herself up as bait. Black Lagoon gets involved, transporting Gretel, but things do not end well. 

Episode sixteen, Greenback Jane, and a slightly lighter story, which with Black Lagoon is very much a relative term. The Gang get involved with a counterfeiter who has run foul of the mob.

Although the audio is only 2.0 it does a decent job with both the thumping theme tune and the vocal action. Extras are not worth writing home about as you only get the second clean closing and some trailers.

Be warned that this is not a show for kids; the themes are very dark and often disturbing, there is a liberal use of the ‘F’ word as well as a number of others which have to be reduced to single letters. There is also a massive amount of graphic violence. That’s not to say that the show is just swearing and fighting, the stories are tautly written providing some of the best action thriller sequences in anime.


Charles Packer

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