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The Guyver is an awesome series. There is drama combined with bloody action.
Bio Booster Armor Vol 1
Review by Matthew Anderson
12 Episode OVA series
Company: Manga Entertainment
Running Time: 120 Min
Rating: R (Language, Violence, Gore)
Chronos Japan has a plan for world conquest. Using genetically engineered monsters called Zoanoids, Chronos is poised to take over the world.
That is until Sho Fukamachi accidentally fuses with an alien technology called "The Guyver". Possessing awesome powers, Sho is the only one that can stop the evil of Chronos.
Unknown to both Chronos and Sho, another Guyver is waiting in the wings. With his own agenda, the Dark Guyver is manipulating events so that Sho can get into the heart of Chronos.
Too bad Sho has to die to do it.
DVD VISION TEST
VIDEO: Decent, better than the video release. The colors
are clearer and the image sharper although, there are some light moments.
There is some light artifacing on images with a solid color. While there
is film grain and specks, these are from the source material.
AUDIO: The Japanese 2.0 and the English 2.0 are about the same in tone and volume. There are some decent surround sound elements, but nothing to get excited about. The English 5.1 is a little fuller and stronger than the English 2.0, but not by much. It's pretty average compared to other DVD's.
EDITS: All Japanese episode titles have been replaced with English ones. The ending animation has an placed black overlays on the Japanese text and replaced them with English. No edits to the actual episodes have been made.
Like they did with Virus, they hacked up the opening animation. The opening crudely splices in scenes from different episodes in order to match up with Mad Dog Winston's awful "Guyver Rock" theme. It also added cheesy overlays on the Japanese text to cover up the fact that this is not the original opening animation.
The next episode titles look like some 12 year old was trying to make a web page, and failed.
EXTRAS: We have extensive Zoanoid data files, the original open and closing, and a photo gallery of VHS covers.
STORY: The Guyver is an awesome series. There is drama combined with bloody action. Very closely based off the manga by Yoshiki Takaya, the staff of writers know and understand what kind of story the creator wanted.
ACTING: The Japanese does a fine job. Full of dynamic range and emotion. The only one who is a little off is the voice for Commander Guou. Compared to the English voice actor, his voice isn't menacing enough.
Well, the original dub cast was pretty good, all though
there were a few times that the lines felt a bit rushed. Like sub
fans hate changes to the script, dub fans hate it
when you change voice actors . Why they changed the voices for some
of the characters, I don't know. The voice for Nakashima (head of
Chronos Japan) is totally wrong for him.
FAN SERVICE: Those of us who are fans of the manga will delight in how close this anime is to the source material. Sorry, no nudity on this one.
I have always like movies and shows where people get "borged". From Tetsuo the Body Hammer to the Virus Buster Serge, I will watch them all. I think it's interesting how they show that man and machine are not so far apart.
The Guyver is a great entry into this sub-genre of Science Fiction. On a visual level, the Zoanoids are cool, except for the rat looking Ramotith. The Guyver is awesome, with it's cool vibration swords, infrared laser, and the awesome Mega Smasher! Guyver III is the coolest of them all, with it's three vibration swords, Mega Smasher, and all black exterior. The fight sequences are just what a true action fan needs. These are knock down, drag out, bitch slapping, battles to the death. There are no "Why did you save my life?" speeches, no inferred death scenes, and no one walks away from a fight. No one makes it out of this series with out being emotionally and physically scarred.
However, all the cool visuals in the world mean nothing with out a good writing. With The Guyver, we see more than just wall to wall ass kicking. The friendship between our hero Sho and Tetsuro is strong, and it shows. When Sho becomes the Guyver, Tetsuro does not run away in fear or disgust. He helps Sho deal with the fear and self loathing that this "creature" has brought him. Even when things are at their worst, their friendship never wavers.
I like how every move they make is countered by Chronos. From bombing the offices of a national newspaper, to brain-wiping their friends minds, these two kids are no match to the resources and intellect that Chronos posses. It shows that just because you have super powers, doesn't mean that you can always win.
We all have our favorite characters. Mine is Commander Guou. His menacing voice, icy cold demeanor, and fear inducing presence make him one of the nastiest "bosses" in anime. For Ann Marie, its the handsome and suave Agito Makishima. This man is so smooth, even the oblivious Mizuki thinks he is a stud.
The one we don't like is Mizuki, or "wussy wuss" as our Managing Editor calls her. Nothing more than live bait, she serves no purpose except to confuse our young hero, and put himself in danger for her. I bet she would make an interesting Zoanoid.
The Guyver holds a special place in our hearts here at DVD Vision Japan. The US Renditions release of The Guyver was one of the first anime VHS tapes we ever bought. This series also was the one that got Ann Marie, our managing editor, into anime. She was so hooked, that we traveled from Maryland to Pennsylvania to pick up volume 5 because the local Suncoast did not carry it. It was also one of the better dubbed series out there (US Renditions Macross II was just horrible).
After US Renditions folded, years would
pass before the Guyver would return to us. When Manga announced that
they were going to re-release "The Guyver" on VHS, then on DVD,
we were so excited. Now, I could retire my VHS copy, and enjoy this
series on DVD.
Then I watched it.
First offense was the editing of the opening. Surely they had to know that this would royally annoy the hard core otaku. Even moderates like me were ticked off. There was nothing wrong with the original. It was cool, well done, and the opening theme was great. Splicing in scenes from the episodes, just so it could match some crappy Euro-trash techno tune is just plain wrong. To make things worse, some of the openings end with Sho transforming into the Guyver. Since adding this animation causes the opening to run over the running time of the "Japanese theme", you are stuck with 10 seconds of silence on the Japanese audio track. How dumb is that?
Next, they redubed and remixed some of the voices. What was wrong with the original dub voices? They all did a great job at matching or even improving their Japanese counterparts. At least they kept the main characters, as well as Guou's voice the same. The adding of additional electronic noise to make the monsters and the Guyvers seem less human is just that, noise. There were times I couldn't understand a single word.
While I am not thrilled at the edits and the redub/remix, The Guyver is still an awesome anime. This is an old school treat you do not want to miss.
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