Freezing Vibration - Collection (Blu-ray) (2013)

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Released 10-Jun-2015

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Anime Audio Commentary-x 2
Bonus Episode-OVAs x 6 (18:22)
More…-Textless opening and closing songs
Trailer-US trailer
Trailer-Other anime x 7
Rating Rated R
Year Of Production 2013
Running Time 283:48 (Case: 300)
RSDL / Flipper Dual Layered
Dual Disc Set
Cast & Crew
Start Up Ads Then Menu
Region Coding 1,2,4 Directed By Takashi Watanabe
Studio
Distributor

Madman Entertainment
Starring Mamiko Noto
Caitlin Glass
Mitsuhiro Ichiki
Josh Grelle
Kana Hanazawa
Jamie Marchi
Yuko Kaida
Tia Ballard
Suzuko Mimori
Whitney Rodgers
Satsuki Yukino
Krishna Smitha
Case ?
RPI ? Music Masaru Yokoyama


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame None English Dolby TrueHD 5.1
Japanese Dolby TrueHD 2.0
Widescreen Aspect Ratio 1.78:1
16x9 Enhancement
16x9 Enhanced
Video Format 1080p
Original Aspect Ratio 1.78:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles English Smoking No
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits Yes, after the credits of episode 12

NOTE: The Profanity Filter is ON. Turn it off here.

Plot Synopsis

     When an alien race called Novas appeared on Earth the only defence are girls called Pandoras who have a naturally occurring special gene called the Stigmata which, enhanced, gives them special powers which when paired with a male companion, a Limiter, enables them to defeat the Novas. The well regarded anime Freezing was the first season which mostly centred on the Pandora Satellizer el Bridget and her Limiter Kazuya. Freezing Vibration is the second season.

     As Freezing Vibration commences Satellizer (voiced by Mamiko Noto / Caitlin Glass), Rana (Kana Hanazawa / Jamie Marchi) and Kazuya (Mitsuhiro Ichiki / Josh Grelle) are flying to a secret location in Alaska when they are diverted to fight a Nova which has appeared near a fuel dump. They land and engage the Nova and are soon joined by Elizabeth (Yuko Kaida / Tia Ballard) and Chiffon (Marina Inoue / Ceelee Rose). The Nova, to their surprise, is defeated easily and when they arrive at the secret facility run by Dr. Scarlet Ohara (Satsuki Yukino / Krishna Smitha) they discover that it was, in fact, a test of their abilities and that the most powerful of Pandoras from around the world, including Roxanne (Aimi Terakawa / Angela Chase) and Charles (Rikako Yamaguchi / Megan White), have been brought to Alaska. It seems that as Novas are occurring more frequently the natural Pandoras are insufficient to fight them. Accordingly Chevalier General Command have authorised experiments to create artificial Evolution Pandoras, called E-Pandoras, by inducing Stigmata into the bodies of normal girls. The first batch of E-Pandoras have already been created, including Amelia (Suzuko Mimori / Whitney Rodgers), Jina (Izumi Kitta / Milly Power) and Rattle (Yuki Kuwabara / Megan Shipman), who Dr. Ohara is ready to start testing against the genuine Pandoras.

     Initially antagonistic, the Pandoras and E-Pandoras start to form a bond although some sense that all is not right with the experiments and that Chevalier Command has a hidden agenda. Their suspicious become certainty when a Stigmata experiment results in an E-Pandora exhibiting signs of becoming a Nova and has to be killed by the Pandoras. Some of the Pandoras support the Command and have no problem with killing “rouge” E-Pandora, whereas others are deeply disturbed. Clearly, the experiments are flawed, if not outright deadly, but any attempt to leak details of the project is ruthlessly suppressed by Chevalier Command. Is revolt the only solution? And who is the most deadly enemy to humanity; the Novas or Chevalier?

     Freezing Vibration is based on the comic written by Lim Da-Young and illustrated by Kim Kwang-Hyun which was serialised in Comic Valkyrie. It is certainly a series for the boys with a wide array of very buxom females in skimpy costumes which seem to rip easily in combat exposing breasts. Also, and for very little plot reason, nude shower scenes are inserted at frequent intervals and the girls also spend a lot of time around an indoor swimming pool wearing very little or, in one case, nothing at all. There are also numerous panty and crutch shots interspersed throughout the episodes.

     Freezing Vibration is more an ensemble piece than Freezing. While there are action sequences, the focus of the series, apart from the nudity, is firmly on character and there are powerful contributions from Satellizer and Kazuya, Elizabeth, Chiffon and the very important and interesting E-Pandora Amelia. These are strong characters, many with moral ambiguities as sides are taken and the real cost of the E-Pandora experiments is revealed. The writing of the series is powerful with considerations of loyalty, sacrifice, human experiments, duty and God, while the Pandoras are all victims, giving up everything to protect humankind while being used and sacrificed by their leaders. The series is rated R, not so much for the nudity but for some disturbing images of violence towards women; the backstory of why Satellizer became the “Untouchable Queen” is exceptionally bleak. This bleakness permeates the series and attempts to lighten the mood, such as the antics of Rana in trying to steal Kazuya from Satellizer, feel silly. The climax of Freezing Vibration however is one of the most explosive and thought-provoking endings to an anime series I have seen.

     Freezing Vibration is a beautiful looking anime with vibrant colours and strong detail. The writing is powerful but bleak, the characters compelling, the climax explosive. Oh, and there are lots of bare breasts and nudity as well. The anime of 12 episodes aired on Japanese TV between October and December 2013. Freezing Vibration – Collection contains all 12 episodes of the anime; episodes 1-9 plus two audio commentaries are on disc 1 while episodes 10-12 plus the rest of the extras, including 6 short OVAs, are on disc 2.

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Transfer Quality

Video

     Freezing Vibration is presented in an aspect ratio of 1.78:1, the original broadcast ratio, in 1080p using the MPEG-4 AVC code.

     This is rich, beautiful anime. The lines are strong, and backgrounds finely detailed, whether it is the snow and mountains of Alaska, the costumes, the research facility or the El Bridget hotel in Bali. Colours are deep and vibrant, the deep blue of the sky contrasting with the snow and dark mountains or the greens of Bali. Blacks are rock solid and shadow detail very good.

     There is some ghosting but otherwise marks and artefacts are absent.

     The English subtitles are in American English in a clear white font. The subtitles are not burnt in when the Japanese dub is selected so they can be removed for Japanese speakers. I noticed no spelling errors but there were a couple of minor grammatical errors.

Video Ratings Summary
Sharpness
Shadow Detail
Colour
Grain/Pixelization
Film-To-Video Artefacts
Film Artefacts
Overall

Audio

    As is the case with many Funimation releases, audio is a choice of the original Japanese in Dolby TrueHD 2.0 while the English dub is TrueHD 5.1. I listened to a number of the episodes in each as the audio and subtitles can be changed on the fly with the remote.

     The Japanese is surround encoded so the rears featured music, some effects and ambient sound. It had a sharper sound than the English 5.1 dub which did have crisper separation although the effects in the rears were not extensive. The sub-woofer added some depth to the action.

     The English voice cast were quite good although I still prefer the original Japanese voice cast which seemed more intense.

     The score by Masaru Yokoyama is excellent. It uses piano and choral sections in the more intense character scenes and a more strident sound during the action without calling attention to itself.

     It is anime so lip synchronisation is approximate in either audio track.

Audio Ratings Summary
Dialogue
Audio Sync
Clicks/Pops/Dropouts
Surround Channel Use
Subwoofer
Overall

Extras

Disc 1

Start-up Trailer

     A trailer for Unbreakable Machine Doll (1:08) plays on start-up. It cannot be selected from the menu.

Commentary – Episode 3

     Milly Power and Whitney Rodgers (the voices of Jina and Amelia) talk a little about their characters but mostly laugh. They are watching the episode, get side-tracked by boobs, talk back at the screen and make other comments. Not very informative but not as silly as some Funimation commentaries.

Commentary – Episode 7

     Caitlin Glass and Austin Tindle (the voices of Satellizer and Luis, her older brother) laugh, make jokes and funny voices, talk about other things they have done and make inane comments about hair styles, boobs, eye colours and Barbie and Ken. Pretty pointless.

Disc 2

Start-up Trailer

     A trailer for High School DxD (1:24) plays on start-up. It cannot be selected from the menu.

OVAs (18:22)

     Six short OVAs with the same audio options, Japanese 2.0 / English 5.1, and the same Japanese and English voice casts, as the series. They ramp up the sexual content and nudity (it is just possible!) There is a play all option.

Textless Opening Song “Avenge World” (1:31)

     The opening song without the credits.

Textless Closing Song “Sekai wa Kizu o Dakishimeru” (1:32)

     The closing song without the credits.

US Trailer (1:17)

     The US trailer for the Blu-ray.

Trailers

     Trailers for Senran Kagura: Ninja Flash! (1:10), Space Dandy (1:33), Sankarea (1:18), Tokyo Ravens (1:19), Noir (1:02), Nobunagan (1:07) and Michiko & Hatchin (2:06).

R4 vs R1

NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.

     Our local Blu-ray release of Freezing Vibration - Collection is the same as the Region A US version right up to FBI piracy warning.

Summary

     Freezing Vibration was a series which kept my attention. It is a beautiful looking anime with a powerful and compelling story, strong characters, an explosive climax and more bare breasts than a nudist convention. Something for everyone, really.

     The video is spectacular and the audio good. The extras are OK and the same as available in the US.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Ray Nyland (the bio is the thing)
Monday, August 17, 2015
Review Equipment
DVDSony BDP-S580, using HDMI output
DisplayLG 55inch HD LCD. This display device has not been calibrated. This display device is 16x9 capable. This display device has a maximum native resolution of 1080p.
Audio DecoderNAD T737. This audio decoder/receiver has not been calibrated.
AmplificationNAD T737
SpeakersStudio Acoustics 5.1

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