Anime DVD Review: One Piece Season Four Voyage Three

One Piece Season Four Voyage Three is a two-disc set that contains episodes 230-241 of the One Piece anime series. The first disc has six episodes and a commentary on Episode 233, while the second disc includes six episodes, commentary on Episode 236, and the set’s bonus features. A “Marathon Feature” is available on both discs, which allows the viewer to watch all of the episodes back-to-back without interruption. Audio options include the English dub and the original Japanese audio with English subtitles.

One Piece Season Four Voyage Three

Publisher: FUNimation Entertainment
Format: DVD
Release Date: December 18, 2012

The story in this set takes place at Water Seven, and several new characters are introduced. This includes the powerful craftsmen of the Galley La Company, their boss Iceberg, his assistant Kalifa, and a group known as the Franky Family that the Straw Hats have a run-in with after the group steals some of the money Luffy and his crew wants to use to get the Going Merry repaired.

At the same time that Luffy, Nami, and Usopp are distracted by the Franky Family, Robin suddenly disappears after encountering a mysterious masked individual who seems to know something about her past. Starting with Robin’s disappearance, the mood of the series begins to shift.

Tensions begin to mount when Luffy and his crew are told by the Galley La Company that the Going Merry cannot be repaired and would be unable to make it to the next island without falling apart. Luffy is ultimately told that he should replace the Going Merry. At first, Luffy is resistant, but he comes to realize that leaving the current ship behind is the better option. This leads to a blow up between Luffy and Usopp, and ultimately causes Usopp to decide to leave Luffy behind. But before he leaves, he challenges Luffy to a duel; if he wins, he gets the Going Merry.

This duel truly begins an emotional rollercoaster for the viewer that continues through the remaining episodes in this set. Between Robin’s disappearance and Usopp leaving the crew, the viewer gets a sense that perhaps the Straw Hats are starting to fall apart. Prior to this arc, there may have been the occasional emotional episode, but this is the strongest that the drama has been up to this point. The duel between Usopp and Luffy ends up feeling like an emotional kick in the gut.

And things only get worse when someone attempts to assassinate Iceberg. When he regains consciousness, he feels confident that one of his assailants is Robin. This suddenly turns the employees at Galley La Company, as well as the citizens of Water Seven, against Luffy and his crew. So now, not only does Luffy have to struggle with Usopp’s leaving, he also has to deal with being accused of plotting to assassinate Iceberg. And to top it all off, Franky, the leader of the Franky Family, wants revenge on Luffy for destroying his house. And there’s one more emotional kick in gut for the viewer near the end of the set when Sanji and Chopper run into Robin and learn what she’s up to.

This was quite a shift in tone after dealing with the Davy Back Fight filler episodes in the previous One Piece set. I’m glad to finally be back in canon material from the original manga source material, but I never would have guessed just how much of a tonal shift would take place over the course of these episodes. I don’t have any complaints about the tonal shift, though, because I believe this helps to make the series stronger and it feels like a natural progression. I’m really looking forward to seeing how this story arc will continue in the next set.

As for the DVD set itself, there are three bonus features on the second disc in addition to the episode commentary. There is a textless version for the opening song that appears in this set (“Kokoro no Chizu”), as well as a textless version for the ending song in this set (“Eternal Pose”). There are also trailers for other properties that FUNimation was promoting at the time this DVD set was released.

If you’re a One Piece fan and are trying to collect the episodes on DVD, you can purchase this set for episodes 230-241. More recent DVD collections are packaging 24-25 episodes per set, and those releases would also be worth considering if you want to add One Piece to your anime home video library.

The reviewer checked out a copy of this set through the King County Library System

Anime Film Review: Dragon Ball Z: Resurrection ‘F’

Originally written for WatchPlayRead.com

Dragon Ball Z: Resurrection ‘F’

Directed by: Tadayoshi Yamamuro
Written by: Akira Toriyama
Starring: Sean Schemmel, Christopher R. Sabat, Chris Ayres, Kyle Hebert, Sonny Strait, John Burgmeier, Mike McFarland, Monica Rial, Todd Haberkorn
Run Time: 93 minutes
Rated: PG

Dragon Ball Z: Resurrection ‘F’ follows the previous film, Dragon Ball Z: Battle of Gods.

This film sees many of the expected characters appear, such as Goku, Vegeta, Kuririn, Piccolo, Gohan, and Master Roshi. Yamcha is actually absent from this film, but like Tien says during the movie, he wouldn’t have been able to help much, anyway. We also see that Emperor Pilaf, Mai, and Shu also appear and are important for bringing about the major plot point: the resurrection of Frieza. We also see Whis and Beerus, who were introduced in Battle of Gods, in this film. Gohan and Videl’s infant daughter, Pan, also makes a brief appearance.

Resurrection ‘F’ introduces some new characters, which primarily consists of Frieza’s new lackeys. But we also get to meet Jaco, a galactic patrolman from the Dragon Ball spin-off manga, Jaco the Galactic Patrolman. I wasn’t sure how Jaco would fit in with the Dragon Ball Z universe, but I was pleasantly surprised at the humor this character was able to add to the movie. He didn’t feel like he was simply thrown in just to have him there, especially since he does help fight against Frieza’s lackeys when they first arrive on Earth.

Going into this film, I wondered how Frieza would end up being resurrected. As soon I saw the plan going into motion, I realized that I should have been able to figure it out because it’s an obvious answer. Even if I had guessed the method, I wouldn’t have been able to guess exactly which characters were ultimately responsible for helping to bring Frieza back.

While Dragon Ball Z: Resurrection ‘F’ contains all the fighting and action sequences that fans of the franchise have come to expect, it also incorporates a lot of humor. Jokes were made with Jaco’s personality, through Krillin’s dialogue, with Whis and Beerus’ obsession with food from Earth, with Goku and Vegeta’s banter, and even Frieza himself serves as a source for the humor. But my most favorite joke was seeing the hell that Frieza was sent to after he was killed by Trunks during the Dragon Ball Z anime series. While I thought Battle of Gods had done a good job of combining the humor of Dragon Ball with the action of Dragon Ball Z, I think that Resurrection ‘F’ did an even better job of finding that balance.

The action sequences in the film are also exciting to watch. Obviously, Goku and Frieza get the most exciting fight sequences. However, there are still some impressive moves that come from Vegeta, Piccolo, Gohan, Tien, Jaco, Krillin, and even Master Roshi. It was great to see Roshi actually fighting, since in much of Dragon Ball Z, the old turtle hermit was seen hanging around his house with Oolong and Puar and not doing much to aid Goku and the others. Seeing Roshi back in action once again proves that he didn’t simply turn into a doddering old fool.

I thought that Resurrection ‘F’ did a fantastic job of incorporating characters, as well as references to events and concepts, that first appeared in the Battle of Gods film. In that respect, this can make Resurrection ‘F’ a little harder to follow if you haven’t seen the previous film.

I would highly recommend Dragon Ball Z: Resurrection ‘F’ to fans of the Dragon Ball franchise. And I would recommend staying through the ending credits to hear the English version of the ending theme, which is sung by the original artist, Momoiro Clover Z. There’s also a very humorous scene that appears right after the ending credits that viewers aren’t going to want to miss.

Anime Blu-ray Review: Ranma 1/2 Set 6

Originally written for WatchPlayRead.com

Ranma 1/2 Set 6 includes episodes 116-138 of the series in their original Japanese airing order. Like with most of the sets released so far, there are significant differences between the episode order in this set and in the sixth DVD box set that was released earlier. This release uses the original Japanese title cards for the episodes instead of the ones created for the English dub. Audio options on this set include the original Japanese audio with English subtitles and the English dub.

Ranma 1/2 Set 6

English Publisher: VIZ Media
Format: Blu-ray
Release Date: June 2, 2015

Ranma 1/2 Set 6 is a mixture of canon stories and filler episodes. Of the 23 episodes included in this set, only eight of them are stories that originally came from the manga. Most of the best episodes come from the canon material, although I can’t count “Curse of the Scribbled Panda” among them. Ranma and Genma accidentally break the seal on some cursed paintings, which includes a scribble drawing of a panda. The female scribble panda comes to life and insists on going on a date with Ranma. The first time I saw this episode a few years back, I hadn’t read the manga yet and I assumed this was a filler story. When I read the manga later, I was dismayed to learn this was actually canon. This was not one of Rumiko Takhashi’s high points of storytelling in the Ranma 1/2 manga.

The best canon storylines in this set are the two multiple part episodes. The first one introduces a new character who has a connection with Happosai and has also been cursed by the springs at Jusenkyo. This new character makes an interesting addition to the world of Ranma 1/2, and it’s too bad we don’t get to see more of this character in the anime. The other multi-episode story focuses on Ukyo, and it provides some more development for her. Unfortunately for Ukyo, this development comes about because of something Ranma did when they were kids and hadn’t told her about. This is one of those episodes where Ukyo becomes a serious contender for Ranma’s affections.

When it comes to the filler episodes, the best one would have to be “The Tendo Family Goes to the Amusement Park.” While it sounds like a pointless filler episode, I always enjoy watching the kart race and how it ends with the winner being the character viewers would least likely to expect. The worst filler episode is “A Cold Day in Furinkan,” which focuses on a mysterious snow girl and a Yeti. This one ranks up there as being one of the strangest episodes to appear in the Ranma 1/2 anime, because it doesn’t make much sense.

This Blu-ray release includes remastered high definition video straight from the Japanese Blu-ray masters. Overall, the remastering looks decent on this set, and I only noticed a couple of minor errors in the subtitles.

There are a total of six bonus features that appear on Ranma 1/2 Set 6. Two of them are featurettes: “We Love Ranma Part 6 – We Love Working on Ranma 1/2” and “We Love Ranma Part 7 – We Love Bloopers.” The first one includes interviews with individuals who worked on the English releases of the anime and the manga. The second featurette ended up being a waste, since all it had was bloopers from the interviews that appeared in the previous six featurettes. In my opinion, it would have been better to not include these bloopers.

“Next Episode Previews” is a continuous piece that includes all of the next episode previews that aired with the episodes that appear on Ranma 1/2 Set 6. I don’t understand why this feature has been included on these sets, since the previews are already included at the end of each episode.

The “Clean Opening” includes a textless version of all three openings that appear on Ranma 1/2 Set 6, and “Clean Ending” includes a textless version of all three endings that appear on the set. Trailers are also included as a bonus feature.

This Blu-ray edition also comes with a 32-page booklet. The booklet opens with a “What Happened Thus Far” write-up that summarizes what happened in the episodes that appeared on Ranma 1/2 Set 5. The majority of the booklet provides a brief summary and screen shot for each episode, as well as production credits for the original release of the series and the credits for those involved with this Blu-ray release. The booklet has glossy pages that look nice, but are a little slippery for holding when you’re reading through it. It’s still a nice booklet and I’m glad to see that it was included. The set also came with an art card that has a picture of Akane.

The box that the Blu-ray case, booklet, and art card come in looks nice and is sturdy. The back of the box that gives a description of the product is actually something you take off of the box after you unwrap it.

While the episodes included in Ranma 1/2 Set 6 may not be as strong as many of the early episodes of the series, I would still recommend this set to Ranma 1/2 fans. This is the best way to get Ranma 1/2 in high definition on Blu-ray without having to pay an arm and leg to try to import the Japanese Blu-rays.

Anime DVD Review: Bleach Set 25

Bleach Set 25 includes episodes 343-354 of the series on two DVDs. Audio options include the original Japanese audio with English subtitles and the English dub.

Bleach Set 25

English Publisher: VIZ Media
Format: DVD
Release Date: June 23, 2015

Set 25 picks the canon storyline back up after a 17-month time skip. In the intervening time, Ichigo has lost his Soul Reaper powers and is living in peace as a third year high school student. But that peace is soon shattered when Chad seems to disappear and Uryu is attacked by an unknown assailant.

Ichigo finds himself being approached by Kugo Ginjo, a member of a group known as Xcution. Its member are made up of people who were born with or have manifested a Fullbring ability, and it turns out this is where Chad has been. Xcution wants to help Ichigo restore his Soul Reaper powers in order to rid themselves of their Fullbring abilities, but Ichigo wants no part of it at first. But after his younger sister Yuzu is attacked by a Hollow, Ichigo decides to take Xcution up on their offer.

With a new story arc, of course, comes new characters. Obviously, there’s Kugo and the other members of Fullbring. Of the Xcution characters, a lot of focus is also placed on Riruka Dokugamine, the member who takes charge of Ichigo’s training. Her Fullbring is known as “Dollhouse” and allows her to place people into objects that she finds to be cute. With her ability, Riruka places Ichigo into objects like a dollhouse or a birdcage and has him fighting plush animals she brings to life by kidnapping humans and putting them into the plushes. Admittedly, these training battles are on the surreal side for the viewer, but they end up accomplishing what they need to do as Ichigo begins taking steps to learn how to activate a Fullbring. We get to see three other members of Xcution as well, but they tended to not be focused on as much as Kugo or Riruka were.

A new enemy is also introduced in this set, a man named Shukuro Tsukishima who has ties with Xcution. He has a lackey named Moe Shishigawara, but it’s safe to say that this guy’s not very bright. It’s no wonder that he’s Shukuro’s lackey.

Ichigo has a part-time job, and this set also introduces the viewer to his boss, Ikumi Unagiya. She owns the Unagiya Shop, a business that performs odd jobs for its customers. In a lot of respects, her personality kind of reminds me of Kukaku Shiba.

Since there’s a 17-month time skip, some of the characters have received some major changes to their character design. Ichigo, Uryu, and the adults don’t seem to have changed much, but many of the other characters have significant changes to them. Characters like Karin, Yuzu, Jinta, and Keigo look drastically different, while others have noticeable changes that aren’t quite as significant.

There’s also something about the atmosphere of the series that has changed, in addition to the character designs. The overall aesthetics of the animation seem to have noticeably changed, and there also seems to be a change to the feel in the storytelling. Considering that there’s a significant time skip and the main characters have grown up in that intervening time, having this change in the series’ atmosphere makes a lot of sense. But as a viewer, it took me a few episodes to truly adjust to these changes.

When it comes to the DVD set itself, the omake are cut off from the end of the episodes and collected together in the “Omake” feature included on both discs. The quality of the omake on this set was poor overall, although a couple of them induced some chuckles.

The bonus features on both discs have the same clean opening and clean ending, since there was only one opening animation and one closing animation that appeared on the episodes in this set. The opening and closing both have options for English subtitles and Romaji subtitles.

“More From VIZ Media” includes the exact same trailers that appear at the beginning of each disc before the menu loads. Not only that, but the trailers used for Bleach Set 25 are the exact same trailers that were used for Sets 22-24. If the trailers didn’t entice me to buy what they were selling three sets ago, they’re not going to convince me to buy them now.

If you’re a Bleach fan, this set is a “must own” if you want to have all of the episodes that include canon material in your anime home video collection.

The reviewer was provided a review copy by VIZ Media

Anime DVD Review: Naruto Shippuden Set 22

Originally written for WatchPlayRead.com

Naruto Shippuden Set 22 includes episodes 271-283 of the series on two DVDs. Audio options include the original Japanese audio with English subtitles and the English dub.

Naruto Shippuden Set 22

Publisher: VIZ Media
Format: DVD
Release Date: April 21, 2015

Set 22 opens with the episode, “Road to Sakura,” which ties in with Naruto Shippuden the Movie: Road to Ninja. While the episode accomplished what it set out to do, which was to introduce the idea of alternate universes that appears in the film, this was kind of painful to watch. The humor used in it really wasn’t that funny, and the episode feels like obvious filler that has nothing to do with the storyline going on in the series. The only thing I truly liked about this episode was actually getting to see Sakura’s parents. Prior to this episode, Sakura had referenced that they existed, but the audience never saw them.

Fortunately, the series returns to the canon storyline after this, and we get a couple of episodes that focus on Ino, Shikamaru, and Choji having to fight against a reanimated version of their teacher, Asuma. These two episodes become very emotional, especially when it comes to Choji. While there are emotional scenes for Shikamau and Ino, Choji gets the most of them. But these two episodes see Choji go through some very important character development, and I found myself feeling sympathy for him as he went through his emotional struggles. For me, these two particular episodes are the strongest and most memorable ones included in this set.

Naruto and Killer Bee receive some focus in this set as well, and there’s two episodes at the end that provide some backstory and character development for Killer Bee and A. I personally enjoyed getting to see the flashbacks featuring these two characters and getting to know the two of them a little better. These two episodes would come right behind the two Choji ones on my list of favorite stories included in this set.

During the Fourth Great Ninja War, we get to see a major development that drastically changes how the Allied Shinobi Forces will have to fight with the Akatsuki. Thanks to this development, it’s going to be harder for the protagonists to be able to discern who is friend and who is foe. I’m looking forward to seeing what repercussions this can have for the canon storyline. There’s at least one filler episode in this set that focuses on this idea, but it had some major plot holes and was on the boring side.

Fortunately, there’s not as much filler in this set as there could have been. Outside of “Road to Sakura,” there were only three other episodes that fall into this category. Of the filler material, I actually kind enjoyed “The Allied Mom Force!!” This episode allowed us to get a glimpse of Ino’s mother, and I also enjoyed seeing the mothers protecting the village from invaders with both their strength and whatever cookware was available for them to use. The storyline with Konohamaru was kind of annoying, but the mothers help make up for that.

The animation in this set is on the weak side, and there are several instances where characters look less defined, almost to the point of looking blobby. While this animation isn’t anywhere near as bad as what appeared in the Invasion of Pain arc, the weakness is still very noticeable. At least most of the stories that appear here help to make up for the weaker animation to some extent.

When it comes to the DVD set itself, there are four bonus features. First are the storyboards for a section of Episode 277, “Unison Sign.” Next, there are “clean” versions of the openings and endings that appeared on the episodes in this set.  There are three versions of the clean openings and endings included: a version without any text, a version with English subtitles, and a version with Romaji subtitles. There are also English credits, along with trailers for other properties that VIZ Media was promoting at the time this set was released.

I was glad to see the storyboards return, since they had been missing from the previous set. However, it’s surprising that the production art hasn’t returned as a bonus feature. I don’t know if there might be issues with the Japanese rights holders involved, or if they weren’t offered or provided any production art for the episodes included in this set.

Naruto Shippuden Set 22 is a “must get” for Naruto fans who want to own the entire franchise in their anime home video collection. The set primarily focuses on canon material that begins to show some progression for the Fourth Great Ninja War, as well as some character development for Choji, A, and Killer Bee. And when it comes to the filler episodes in the set, most of them are at least somewhat tolerable.

Anime DVD Review: Bleach DVD Set 24

Bleach DVD Set 24 includes episodes 330-342 of the series on two DVDs. Audio options include the original Japanese audio with English subtitles and the English dub.

Bleach DVD Set 24

English Publisher: VIZ Media
Format: DVD
Release Date: March 17, 2015

Set 24 continues the “Gotei 13 Invading Army” filler arc that began in Set 23, and this set includes the final episodes of it.

This set begins with Nozomi, the Mod Soul girl, discovering that she has Soul Reaper abilities when she’s attacked by a Hollow. After this awakening, Nozomi wants to help the others in their fight, but she cannot remember the name or the power of her zanpakuto. Ichigo, Rukia, Uryu, and Chad decide to have Nozomi undergo the training the Ichigo had gone through previously to awaken his powers. While Nozomi successfully awakens her abilities and has some success in battle, Inaba ultimately is able to defeat her and take her with him… but not before revealing a startling fact about Nozomi.

The remainder of the arc sees Ichigo losing his Soul Reaper powers and the attempt to regain them, the attempt to rescue Nozomi, and having to defeat an even more overpowered Inaba. After the conclusion of this arc, there’s one final episode that shows what happens to Ichigo in the wake of the “Gotei 13 Invading Army” arc and sets the stage for the next canon arc that will begin in Set 25.

The episodes in this set did help to make Nozomi a more likable character than she had been in Set 24. However, I still couldn’t root for her as much as I would have wanted to simply due to the fact that I knew she was simply a filler arc character that would never return. And of course, the final episode of the arc “set everything back to zero,” so everything is practically the way it was before the arc started. Probably the best part of this filler was getting to see Kon in a different light, and that there can be more to him than the goofy comic relief character that he normally is.

This filler arc took its sweet time to build itself up with such an overpowered filler character, and then the ending felt rushed. As part of the ending, the reigai turned out to be a “deus ex machina” that could conveniently help to bring the final battle to an end. By the conclusion of the arc, though, I was wondering where Yachiru was, since we see all the other captains and lieutenants but not her. She was also never mentioned once during the arc. This felt like a major oversight to me. While the final episode in the set is technically filler material, I thought it does a good of wrapping up the previous arc and setting the stage for what’s to come. For once, the anime did find a good place to put filler and try to fill in a gap that existed in the manga. Overall, I didn’t think the story was that great, but at least the filler didn’t break into the middle of a major battle.

When it comes to the DVD set itself, the omake are still cut off from the end of the episodes and collected together in the “Omake” feature included in the bonus features on each disc. The quality of the omake on this set was a mixed bag; there was an occasional amusing one, but they were more likely to be either stupid or not amusing.

There’s a clean opening and clean ending included on both discs, and it’s the same opening and closing. During these episodes, the ending theme changed, and there are different images for each episode that focused on a particular character. This was done as a way to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the Bleach manga. VIZ only used the ending that featured Aizen on both discs in the set, and I was disappointed by that. They could have featured at least two different endings on each of the discs. The opening and closing both have options for English subtitles and Romaji subtitles.

“More From VIZ Media” includes the exact same trailers that appear at the beginning of each disc when it first starts up. Not only that, but the trailers used for Bleach DVD Set 24 are the exact same trailers that were used for Sets 22 and 23. Knowing that there’s usually three months between each set, it would seem like it would be time to change the trailers to more recent items they’re promoting at this point.

If you’re a Bleach fan, I would only recommend picking up Bleach DVD Set 24 if you want to have a complete collection of the series or you want to be able to say that you’ve seen every episode. Casual viewers can skip these episodes and not miss anything.

The reviewer checked out a copy of this item through the King County Library System

Anime DVD Review: Bleach DVD Set 23

Bleach DVD Set 23 includes episodes 317-329 of the series on two DVDs. Audio options include the original Japanese audio with English subtitles and the English dub.

Bleach DVD Set 23

English Publisher: VIZ Media
Format: DVD
Release Date: December 16, 2014

Set 23 begins a new filler arc for Bleach, which is known as the “Gotei 13 Invading Army” arc. This arc runs for 26 episodes, and the first 13 of them are included on this set.

This filler arc begins with the Soul Reapers discovering that the time in the Precipice World is out of sync with the Soul Society. Over the course of the episodes in this set, it’s discovered that Inaba Kageroza, one of the scientists who works under Mayuri Kurotsuchi, is a traitor who’s behind the distortion of time and the reigai (clones of the captains and lieutenants who have been fighting with the Soul Reapers). Inaba is a character who was created specifically for this arc, and by the end of this set, it’s obvious that he’s way overpowered. Of course, if the writers hadn’t overpowered him like they did, this story arc wouldn’t have lasted for 26 episodes. Unfortunately, the more powerful we see that this character is, the more ridiculous the story seems.

This arc also introduces another new character named Nozomi Kujo. Kon investigates a spiritual disturbance and finds a girl covered in rags who is lying asleep in a parking lot. Kon, who is in Ichigo’s body at the time, takes her back to the Kurosaki house. After it’s revealed that Inaba is after Nozomi, Ichigo and the others decide that they need to protect her. But Nozomi stays very aloof for the most part and doesn’t seem grateful for their protection. I suspect that the writers were trying to create some kind of cool and distant character, but with the way she acts and with the things that she says, she comes across as being bitchy and annoying. I can honestly say that I haven’t liked this character up to this point, and it’s going to take something major happening by the end of the arc for me to care about her.

This arc also sees Ichigo trying to do the things that has normally done as a Soul Reaper, even though his powers are fading after his battle with Aizen. Of course, this issue isn’t helped any when he finds himself being framed for the distortion of time in the Precipice World. At this point, Ichigo’s “dealing with his fading powers” is the fact that others keep mentioning it to him or they reference it in action scenes he’s involved in; we don’t actually see him consciously thinking about this himself. There would have been the potential for some good character moments if we saw Ichigo consciously thinking about his fading powers as he tries to help out with the situation. There are still 13 more episodes of this arc to go, so perhaps we might see some of this near the end of it.

For the most part, what I’ve seen to the “Gotei 13 Invading Army” arc hasn’t done much for me. The new characters who are introduced are rather annoying, and there hasn’t been much to the story to truly keep me interested in what’s going on. There are a couple of amusing moments with Kenpachi and Yachiru during this set, but those moments are probably the most memorable parts of the story included in this set. At this point, I’m only going to finish it off this story arc when I watch the next set so I can get back to canon material. Also, I want to be able to say that I’ve seen all of the Bleach anime.

When it comes to the DVD set itself, the omake continue to be cut off from the end of the episodes and collected together in the “Omake” feature included in the bonus features on each disc. The quality of the omake on this set pretty much matched the quality of the episodes; overall, they were uninteresting and rather forgettable.

There’s a clean opening and clean ending included on both discs, and it’s the same opening and closing due to the fact that neither song changed over the course of these 13 episodes. They both have options for English subtitles and Romaji subtitles.

“More From VIZ Media” includes the exact same trailers that appear at the beginning of each disc when it first starts up. Not only that, but the trailers used for Bleach DVD Set 23 are the exact same trailers that were used for Set 22. This really made me feel as if whoever put this set together put even less effort into the “More From VIZ Media” feature that usual.

If you’re a Bleach fan, I would only truly recommend picking up Bleach DVD Set 23 if you want to have a complete collection of all of the episodes of the series or you want to be able to say that you’ve seen every episode of the series. Casual viewers can skip the episodes included on this set and not miss anything.

The reviewer checked out a copy of this item through the King County Library System