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DVD Review

DVD cover

Series 2 - Part 2


Starring (voice): Fumiko Orikasa, Masakazu Morita, Hiroki Yasumoto and Kentarou Itou
Manga Entertainment
RRP: £19.99
Certificate: 15
Available 03 November 2008

To anyone in the street, Ichigo Kurosaki appears to be a normal fifteen-year-old. But Ichigo has a secret... he can interact with the dead. Although an unusual ability, it does not affect his normal life until he meets Rukia Kuckiki, an emissary of the Soul Society and a Soul Reaper. During one fateful confrontation Rukia transfers some of her power into Ichigo, the transference turns him into a full Soul Reaper. For this transgression Rukia has been returned to the realm of the Soul Society to face condemnation and death. Ichigo believes in a life for a life so determines, with his friends, to rescue Rukia, but are they up to the job...?

Bleach: Series Two: Volume Two, and Ichigo’s quest to rescue Rukia from the Soul Society is well underway as he sets off, sword in hand and companions at his back. Oddly enough this two disc set starts with a stand-alone story about Ichigo’s sisters and a dead cat - I kid you not...

Episode thirty four sees us back in the action which shows the nearly tragic outcome of the Ichigo and Renji confrontation. While Ichigo is taken to the sewers to be healed, Renji is cast into prison on the orders of Captain Kuchiki. Episodes thirty five and thirty six sees continues Ichigo’s attempt to rescue Rukia, though this is by now getting to be the longest rescue in history, which is still not resolved by the end of this set.

Disc two continues with the rescue, stopping off only to add Zangetsu as an ally. Episode forty-one ends with Ichigo finally making it to Rukia’s cell. This part of the story has benefited greatly from the inclusion of the intrigue within the Soul Society - without this inclusion Ichigo’s now endless rescue would have started to drag.

Set up on all the discs is the same with a choice of either English or Japanese 2.0 stereo with subtitles. The sound remains clear and dynamic. The 4:3 picture is pin sharp, with no noticeable drop in the quality of animation that inflicts many long running shows. Disc one holds episodes thirty-three to thirty-six and has some production art and a textless closing as extras, disc two holds episodes thirty-seven to forty-one with more production art and another textless closing.

So what’s it, with only nine episodes over two discs, when the previous release had included three discs, the number of episodes appear to be erratic with little explanation given. Still, the show remains a fine watch, even if the extras are a bit pants.


Charles Packer

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