Dragon Ball Z-3.5: Androids-Dr Gero (2000)

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Released 10-Apr-2001

Cover Art

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Anime Main Menu Introduction
Notes-Previous Saga Info
Biographies-Character
Featurette-Dragonball Z Web Promo
Trailer-Preview Other Sagas
DVD Credits
Rating Rated M
Year Of Production 2000
Running Time 60:42 (Case: 62)
RSDL / Flipper No/No Cast & Crew
Start Up Menu
Region Coding 2,4 Directed By Daisuke Nishio
Studio
Distributor
Toei Animation
Madman Entertainment
Starring Sean Schemmel
Christopher Sabat
Case Soft Brackley-Transp
RPI $24.95 Music Shuusuke Kikuchi
Chiho Kikuchi
Takeshi Ike


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame Full Frame English Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio None
16x9 Enhancement No
Video Format 576i (PAL)
Original Aspect Ratio 1.33:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles None Smoking Yes, but only from the energy blasts
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits No

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Plot Synopsis

    It's been a while since I last reviewed a Dragonball Z DVD. To make matters worse, I haven't been watching the episodes in the morning on Cheez TV. So, receiving a new Dragonball Z DVD to review was quite exciting. All the episodes on this disc are excellent and really start to show the complexities of the storyline of the series.
 

    The Secret of Dr Gero (Episode 115): After the surprise that was Vegita appearing in the previous episode, this one develops that storyline further. With Gokuu recovering from his heart virus, Vegita takes on Android 19 himself, with amazing results. After seeing this, Android 20 retreats to the mountains. Vegita doesn't like his cowardly approach to fighting and soon flies off after him, with the rest of the Z fighters following as the episode ends.

    More Androids?! (Episode 116): This episode follows on from the end of the last, with the Z fighters searching for the missing Android 20. Piccolo is nearly absorbed by Android 20 as they intercept him before he reaches his hidden base. Luckily Gohan is around at the right time to save him. Also, it is revealed that Dr. Gero has two more (dormant) androids at his base.

    Follow Dr Gero (Episode 117): Soon after Piccolo beats up Android 20, Buruma arrives to see what is going on. She realizes that Android 20 is none other than Dr. Gero himself with some added mechanical attachments. This is startling news to Trunks, who for once did not already know this. Dr. Gero then cowardly runs off, such that the canyons conceal his position from the Z fighters. His purpose this time is to activate two more Androids, ones that are even more powerful than he is.
 

    Dragonball Z 3.5: Androids - Dr Gero is essential viewing for all DBZ fans.

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Transfer Quality

Video

    Dragonball Z 3.5: Androids - Dr Gero sports a transfer that is of lower quality than the previous DVDs, seemingly due to the condition of the source materials.
 
    As is the rest of DBZ, the transfer is presented in an aspect ratio of 1.33:1 and is not 16x9 enhanced.

    Being animation, this is a very clear and sharp transfer only marred by the amounts of grain present. This degrades the overall look of the feature, as the normally sharp lines do seem a little rough. Shadow detail is as the artists intended it to be, especially in the characters' faces.

    Colour was astonishing, and definitely a rank above the previous DVDs in the series. These three episodes really did have a vast range of colours. What really looked great were the blast reflections in the characters' faces - these were normally of a light purple or blue colour, and accentuated the on-screen action.

    As noted above, this set of episodes suffered from grain and other symptoms of old age. In the first episode especially, grain was most prominent in horizontal pans across the landscape. The cels used for this disc must have been in worse condition than those utilized for previous discs. At 8:33, 8:34, 8:36 and 8:45, large lines across the top of the screen were noticeable, especially at 8:36 where the whole cel looked to be in horrid condition. No cases of aliasing or other film-to-video artefacts were noted.

Audio

    An average, somewhat underused, audio track accompanies the disc.

    DBZ is presented in English Dolby Digital 2.0, encoded at 192Kb/s.

    Dialogue was clear at all times, character accents notwithstanding.

    The music seems to get better as the series evolves further. On this DVD, some new music was noted, before it returned to the same monotonous themes that we have been presented with on previous DVDs. It seems that each character has their own theme which is played when they are the main point of the action. So, the way I see it, more new characters means more new music!

    The mix itself is very monophonic in nature. The only L/R channel imaging effect I heard was at 59:00, which was actually imaging that occurred in the musical score. When considering what could have been done with the mix, such as during character fly-bys, the imaging potential of this soundtrack was severely underutilized.

Extras

Menu

    A static menu with the cover art as the background, it uses the same template as all the others menus in the series.

Notes - Previous Saga Info

    These are summaries of the Saiyan, Namek, Captain Ginyu, Frieza, Garlic Jnr., and Trunks sagas. Quite interesting if you aren't up to date with the series.

Biographies - Characters (10)

Featurette - Dragonball Z Web Promo (0:13)

    This is a very short look through the official website. It is of brilliant quality and looks like it has been captured directly from computer.

Trailer - Preview Other Sagas (1:47)

    The first half of the trailer advertises the Garlic Jnr. Saga (set before this one). The odd thing is that the titles advertised aren't available in Australia and have not been announced either. The second half is just some flashes of Trunks, advertising the first couple of DVDs, even though this has been done somewhat indirectly.

DVD Credits

Censorship

    There is censorship information available for this title. Click here to read it (a new window will open). WARNING: Often these entries contain MAJOR plot spoilers.

R4 vs R1

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

    As always, the Region 1 version of the disc features a Japanese language track and English subtitles as well as the English language track, making it the (expensive) version of choice if you want to experience Dragonball Z with its original soundtrack.

Summary

    Dragonball Z 3.5 is another decent disc to add to the collection, with the episodes finally becoming a lot more serious and involving. The video quality was a little lacking on this disc as was the audio. The extras are minimal.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Andrew Siers (I never did my biography in primary school)
Sunday, April 29, 2001
Review Equipment
DVDPioneer DV-626D, using Component output
DisplayToshiba 34N9UXA. Calibrated with Video Essentials.
Audio DecoderBuilt in to DVD player. Calibrated with Video Essentials.
AmplificationYamaha CX-600 Pre-Amp, Yamaha MX-600 Stereo Power Amp for Mains, Yamaha DSP-E300 for Center, Teac AS-M50 for Surrounds.
SpeakersMain Left and Right Acoustic Research AR12s, Center Yamaha NS-C70, Surround Left and Right JBL Control 1s

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