Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Doomed Megalopolis DVD Set - From The Vault

Hello Dwellers and Welcome To The Basement…

This Friday Night I will be seeing Suicide Squad, so making that official, and the review for that movie will probably be posted very late that night.

But that’s then… and since I’m spreading out the Yay Or Nays for the Hall of Fame… I figured I’d go through the goodies and things that are here in the basement… in a sorta retro review series… basically… it’s ‘From The Vault’!  So this could be looking at some old action figures I have laying, DVDs, books, Music CDs… etc… so forth… it’s totally random…. And is more of a product review, instead of a straight review.


The main menu... it's a bit thin on features...


And to kicks this off… with Doomed Megalopolis, a four episode mini-series which is an adaptation of Teito Monogatari by Hiroshi Aramata . The general plot is that Kato is obsessed with conquering Tokyo and awakening the city’s guardian Masakato, leading to mass destruction and seemingly unlikely opposition…


All the DVD special features... trailers for other DVDs...


The miniseries which aired over the course of a year from September 1991 to August 1992, covers only part of the original story, only a third of it, but since I never read the source material, I have to judge this on its own merits…. And while I’m not sure how much of it is lost in translation, I’ve always enjoyed it when I pulled this off the shelf and put it into my DVD player. It is an ‘alternate timeline’ story, working in the very much fictional elements around real actual events, in particular the opening of Tokyo Metro Ginza Line that was opened in 1927 serving as an ‘ending’ point.



The DVD set that I have here was released in 2002 through ADV Films, and it was the first DVD release of Doom Megalopolis, collecting all four episodes, each of which run about 40-50 minutes in length.


The case itself is one of the thicker style ones, which is probably over-kill, the front cover is wicked cool with Kato, looming over Tokyo as Lighting reigns down on the city. I often wonder if he was what inspired the design for M. Bison in the Street Fighter franchise. But the case is a bit ‘wasteful’ cause there is no ‘booklet’ or anything, in fact I still have the ADV Survey and Newtype USA subscription cards. The discs are rather plain, one maroon, one dark navy blue with Doomed Megalopois disc 1 and disc 2, but there are ‘lighting cracks’ as well. The back is nothing special, a few screen caps, the base description of the story, and some of the credits. The Credits on the back is interesting, in that it list all four directors of the individual episodes, which is something I have rarely seen on short mini-series compilations.

As far as presentation goes, it’s in native standard 4:3 format which on a 16:9 screen should stretch out to fill it completely, depending on your player, on mine I got the nice black bars on the side as you see.


Nothing more terrifying than ring a round the rosie

This only contains the English version… yeah, you heard / read that right. As near as I can tell, the rights for the Japanese dialog and soundtrack wouldn’t be acquired until 2003… and on top of that there are no DVD extras on this two disk set. So if you want that, you want to track down the SECOND DVD set that ADV released, which is listed as a Special Edition. That said the English voice cast is decent, with the biggest names on the being Barbara Goodson and Cam Clarke, who are best known for being featured voices on Mighty Morphin Power Rangers and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles respectively.


The animation is very good, being from the era before Computer Generated Graphics started becoming common in Anime, and one of the big advantages of animation is that you can get the shading and coloring just right to sell the horror, plus there is no limit on the imagination of what things you can come up.



So what’s the verdict here… well… the version I have is pretty much obsolete, but its serviceable if you can’t find the Special Edition version and want to add the mini-series to your collection.

If you’ve seen Doomed Megalopolis, I would love to know your opinions on it.

Smite 12/9/2018