Friday, February 28, 2014

Kin'youbi Mosaic: 2/28/14 Attack on Boyfriend Edition

Let’s get this out of the way first: The first half of Attack on Titan is available for pre-order on Blu-ray and DVD! There are currently three versions available for pre-order: a DVD-only set retailing for $35 (Wal-mart only), a standard edition Blu-ray/DVD combo retailing at $50 (Rightstuf, Amazon), and a special Limited Edition retailing at $90 (Rightstuf, Amazon) with a variety of goodies (check the links for more). All of these will be released on June 3rd, 2014 and feature the first 13 episodes, including an English dub (plus the usual Japanese with English subtitles).
 
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In addition, Sentai Filmworks has released their June 2014 release slate, with all of the titles within available for pre-order on Rightstuf. It's a mix of Winter and Spring 2013 shows, plus one Fall 2012 show and even one Summer 2013. There's also one title that was only just announced as licensed earlier this week.

Amnesia and Samurai Bride are available with English dubs on Blu-ray or DVD. Available as a sub-only Blu-ray or DVD are a number of shows: Henneko: The Hentai Prince and the Stony CatLeviathan: The Last Defense (i.e. Zettai Bouei Leviatan), and their newest acquisition, MAOYU ~ Archenemy and Hero (i.e. Maoyuu Maou Yuusha). Finally, there are two shows that are being released as sub-only DVD only (no Blu-ray): Busou Shinki and Dog and Scissors.

This means that after a short period where everything was being offered with a Blu-ray, Sentai has now essentially given themselves three tiers in which they have divided up their releases. The titles that are most likely to sell enough extra units dubbed to make up for the dub cost get dubbed Blu-rays and DVDs (it seems that shows based on otome games are big dub sellers, hence why Amnesia is getting a dub despite having a... questionable reputation otherwise). At the moment, it seems that sub-only Blu-ray and DVD is the "default" tier for most of their titles, which probably won't sell well enough to make up for a dub but should still turn out decent sales. And then, there are the titles that are so low-profile that they are not expecting much in the way of sales at all, which will end up sub-DVD only.

On a side note, it is worth noting that the MAOYU and Henneko Blu-ray releases are planned to be released as one single disc containing all 12 episodes of those shows. According to Sentai Filmworks, this is possible without any loss of quality as there is only the Japanese audio track, with no dub track. Both Amnesia and Samurai Bride, which are each 12 episodes dubbed, are still split across two discs, and Leviathan, 13 sub-only episodes, is also split across two discs. (At the very least, Japan has done this before, as an upcoming Blu-ray release of GJ-bu is going to be a single disc with all 12 episodes.)

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Here's a license announcement that will rock your nice boats: Discotek Media, of all people, has licensed, of all things, School Days. Yes, that School Days anime. If you don't know what I'm talking about, let's just say that it's based on a dating sim that has some… interesting endings. The series is planned for release on June 24th.

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I decided to pick up the currently-airing Super Sonico: The Animation, which I initially dropped after a weak first episode but decided to pick back up again after hearing some good things about it. Indeed, the second and third episodes were just okay at best, but episodes 4 and 5 were fantastic, episode 6 was pretty good, and episode 7… that episode is currently my absolute favorite single episode this season. It is pure iyashikei, right up there with shows like Aria. In fact, if you like shows like Aria at all, I definitely recommend at the very least watching episode 7--there's no real need to watch any previous episodes to understand it, and you certainly don't have to watch any more of it beyond the one episode.

Super Sonico can be an uneven show--Episode 8 was the weakest episode yet--but its stronger moments have managed to win me over. It's definitely one of this season's biggest surprises.

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