Sailor Moon-Volume 5: Introducing Sailor Venus (1995)

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Released 18-Sep-2002

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Anime Main Menu Audio & Animation
Rating Rated G
Year Of Production 1995
Running Time 130:47 (Case: 135)
RSDL / Flipper RSDL (65:23) Cast & Crew
Start Up Menu
Region Coding 4 Directed By Junichi Sato
Studio
Distributor
Toei Animation
Madman Entertainment
Starring None Given
Case Click
RPI $24.95 Music Bob Summers


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame Full Frame English Dolby Digital 2.0 mono (224Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio None
16x9 Enhancement No
Video Format 576i (PAL)
Original Aspect Ratio 1.33:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures Yes
Subtitles None Smoking No
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits No

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

Plot Synopsis

    This is the fifth volume of the first series of Sailor Moon. I'm not going to go over the basics of Sailor Moon again - I recommend you read my review of Sailor Moon Volume 1: A Heroine is Chosen first.

    The episodes on this disc are:

  1. Too Many Girlfriends - Lyta and Serena both have a crush on Andrew, but he has a girlfriend, Rita
  2. Grandpa's Follies - Rei is worried about Grandpa's behaviour, and his new acolyte, the burned-out musician Chad
  3. Kitty Chaos - an episode from Luna's point of view, and ending with a Luna Says instead of Sailor Says
  4. Tuxedo Melvin - a really silly episode, with Melvin getting ideas of being Tuxedo Mask to impress Molly
  5. Sailor V Makes the Scene - a phoney Sailor Moon - could this be another Sailor Scout?
  6. A Crystal Clear Destiny - Zoicyte battling Tuxedo Mask for possession of all the rainbow crystals - big revelation time!

    This volume is called Introducing Sailor Venus, but once again, I don't think that's a good name. Yes, Sailor Venus does appear (I'm not telling when!), but lots of other things happen too. There are more secrets revealed in this group of episodes than in the previous volume (the one called The Secret of the Sailor Scouts) - go figure!

    Things are really building to a climax. All of the rainbow crystals are found, and the universe is in grave danger - the Negaverse must not get the Silver Imperium Crystal, which can be formed by the union of the seven rainbow crystals. Serena is worried about Tuxedo Mask's allegiance, because he has some of the crystals, and seems to have a private agenda concerning them.

    I really like the interactions between the Sailor Scouts - they come across as more rounded characters than the average superheroes. They have moods, they have crushes, they fight, they make up - they're like real teenage girls (well, maybe a bit less b****y...). Serena is still a bit of a ditz, which really annoys Rei, but Lyta and Serena are becoming good friends (albeit competitors for Andrew's affections). Darian is rather interesting too - we are getting more insight into his character as the episodes pass.

    Sailor Venus is a welcome addition to the team - at last we see all five Sailor Scouts that we see in the opening credits, and both cats (I really like cats, so I notice them particularly). It's interesting to see all the elements of the opening credits appear - the black shadows and the coloured spheres were a mystery until the last volume when we learned of the rainbow crystals.

    I'm pleased to see that the Sailor Scouts aren't saying "I will punish you" any more - now it's things like "I will triumph over evil, and that means you." - much better.

    No real Easter Egg this time - just the DVD Credits, and you get to see those after watching all the episodes, anyway. If that's the price for a better layer change, I'm happy.

    I noticed, much more than in the first three volumes, that we get a quick repeat of the last scene after each commercial break - that gets a bit irritating, but I've seen worse.

    Sailor Moon continues to be good fun, but it's building to quite a climax - I'm eager to see the next volume, because this one ends on a cliffhanger...

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Transfer Quality

Video

    The DVD is presented in an aspect ratio of 1.33:1, and is not 16x9 enhanced. That's the original aspect ratio, as is appropriate for a TV series that was made in Japan in 1992 (the 1995 copyright is for the English adaptation).

    This disc is designed to play all the episodes in sequence, which is handy enough. You can select an episode from the menu, but it will play from there to the end of the disc.

    The picture is a bit softer on this disc. That's a shame, because the last disc was rather sharp. The softness is not too bad, but I'd rather have the sharper image. Shadow detail is irrelevant to anime. There's no low level noise.

    Colour is clear and bright enough - a fair bit of the palette is pastel, but there's plenty of strong colour - there's a scene with several of the Sailor Scouts lined up, and I particularly noticed the hair colours: yellow, red/brown, black, blue. There's no colour bleed or oversaturation.

    There are lots of tiny film artefacts, but they are not distracting. There are fewer larger ones than on previous discs, and they are generally smaller, or less annoying: see the white spot at 37:03, the hair at 52:44, and the fine vertical scratch at 89:33. There's some light telecine wobble, but it's not really noticeable. There's even less aliasing than usual, which is good, but attributable to the softness of the picture. Apart from the softness, this is quite a decent transfer.

    There are no subtitles.

    The disc is single sided, RSDL; the layer change is at 65:23, exactly between the third and fourth episodes - that's the best place for it, and I'm glad to see it there (not that many people will see it, anyway).

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

Audio

    There are only one soundtrack, in English Dolby Digital 2.0, not surround encoded, mono. There are no audio artefacts on this disc.

    The dialogue is clear and easily understood. There are no obvious mismatches between dialogue and mouth motion.

    The English title music is credited to Bob Summers. Most of the incidental music is variations on the Sailor Moon theme, with specific signatures for a couple of the characters (Tuxedo Mask, in particular). There's a rather nice song in the final episode - you'll hear it, so I'm not going to give away any of the plot to describe it.

    You'll get nothing from your surrounds or subwoofer with this soundtrack.

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

Extras

Menu

    The menu is lightly animated (scrolling background) with music. It offers a choice of which episode to start at - when you select an episode it starts playing there, but it continues through the remaining episodes.

Easter Egg

    Not really an Easter Egg - if you do what you did on Volume 4 to bring up the Easter Egg all you will get is the DVD Credits page (this is the same as the first three discs).

R4 vs R1

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

    The R1 and R4 versions of this disc offer the same features. Nothing to pick between them, really, except that ours is PAL, and theirs is NTSC.

Summary

    Six more episodes, lots of plot development, quite entertaining. Not a great DVD, but not bad.

    The video quality is perfectly adequate, but soft.

    The audio quality is fine.

    There are no real extras on this disc.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Tony Rogers (bio-degrading: making a fool of oneself in a bio...)
Tuesday, September 24, 2002
Review Equipment
DVDPioneer DV-S733A, using Component output
DisplaySony VPH-G70 CRT Projector, QuadScan Elite scaler (Tripler), ScreenTechnics 110. Calibrated with Video Essentials. This display device is 16x9 capable.
Audio DecoderBuilt in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Video Essentials.
AmplificationDenon AVC-A1SE
SpeakersFront Left, Centre, Right: Krix Euphonix; Rears: Krix KDX-M; Subwoofer: Krix Seismix 5

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