Neon Genesis Evangelion-Collection 0:8 (Episodes 24-26) (1998)
Menu Animation & Audio
Trailer-Bubblegum Crisis 2040; Sin-The Movie
Trailer-Martian Successor Nadesico; Spriggan; Gasaraki
|Year Of Production||1998|
|RSDL / Flipper||No/No||Cast & Crew|
|Region Coding||2,4||Directed By||Hideaki Anno|
|Pan & Scan/Full Frame||Full Frame||
English Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
Japanese Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
|Widescreen Aspect Ratio||None|
|Video Format||576i (PAL)|
|Original Aspect Ratio||1.33:1||Miscellaneous|
|Annoying Product Placement||No|
|Action In or After Credits||No|
Well, I suppose that if you have gotten this far in the series, you are in for the whole journey. So the fact that we are now really into the "trippy" episodes probably matters not in the least. This is certainly not a good place to start an investigation of this series for the final three episodes really are tying together a whole heap of strings, whilst posing some interesting questions about what constitutes self - just to keep the existentialist levels high. And so the final collection of Neon Genesis Evangelion, Neon Genesis Evangelion Collection 0:8 comprises:
Asuka has done a bunk and Rei is unavailable, EVA 01 is all that is left until another pilot for EVA 02 can be found. So, out of the blue appears the Fifth Child, Kaworu Nagisa, sent by SEELE under mysterious circumstances. Asuka is found at the same time but by then Kaworu has met with Shinji and Rei. Shinji thinks he may have found his kindred soul, a person who finally understands him, whilst Misato just wonders what the heck Kaworu is when he promptly synchs perfectly with EVA 02. After some deftly-handled homosexual undertones, which naturally spook Shinji, the true nature of Kaworu is discovered when he operates EVA 02 - without entering the entry plug and without the plug being inserted into the EVA. Gendo Ikari has no option but to send EVA 01 into the fray otherwise the Seventeenth Angel, Tabris might bring about Third Impact just as SEELE planned.
So Shinji has killed the final Angel and all should be well. Except it is not and Shinji really goes out into lysergic acid diethylamide trippy mode. Has humanity been saved or is there a humanity to really save? How do you come to terms with the devastation that has been wrought and the fact that basically everyone and everything you know in NERV is basically a pawn in the grand plan of SEELE, a grand plan that appears to have been thwarted by Gendo Ikari? Or is that grand plan actually the work of Gendo Ikari? Trippy it may be, but any popular show that can effectively use Schiller's Ode To Joy, from Beethoven's majestic Ninth Symphony has to have some inherent worth.
More trippy stuff as Shinji comes to terms with his own self. Not the self that is perceived by others but the self that he wishes to be. Basically existentialism gone mad in popular culture, Shinji finally comes to the realisation that it is only through his own eyes that he can make the changes that he would like to make. That the reality that is need not be the reality that always will be, for there are many realities - it is up to each of us to decide the reality that we wish to reside in. Shinji is presented with another one of those realities which partially explains the nature of some of the key characters of the series.
The transfer is presented in a Full Frame format and it is not 16x9 enhanced.
Apart from Episode 24, this is one of the better transfers in the series. The solidity of black line detail is somewhat improved after the slight drop off in the last collection, albeit an improvement that tends to be highlighted by some aliasing issues. Overall detail remains as good as we can expect from this sort of material, shadow detail equally remains a non-issue of sorts: there were a couple of areas where the animation was deliberately done with a shadow type effect that personally I would have preferred to have seen a little clearer but nothing major. There was nothing in the way of serious grain in the transfer and the transfer is generally quite clear. There did not appear to be any low level noise issues at all.
The quality of the colours remains high here with some nice, steady, well-saturated and nicely vibrant colours. There was nothing in the way of oversaturation here at all, apart from some deliberate oversaturation in Episode 25. There were a few instances of colour bleed, but nothing really bothersome. The colour looks good and true to the original content.
There did not appear to be any significant MPEG artefacts in the transfer. Film-to-video artefacts are pretty much confined to some relatively minor aliasing here and there, which is hardly any sort of distraction at all, and the obligatory minor telecine wobble that continues to plague the series. There are no really noticeable film artefacts in the transfer.
Each episode on the DVD has the original Japanese credits with the English credits all being shown after the end of Episode 26. We do again see some sloppiness in presentation with Episode 24 proclaiming that English credits follow the Japanese credits. They actually all appear after Episode 26.
The English subtitles are the usual wayward efforts that we have come to expect with these releases. They might do a decent job of translating the Japanese dialogue (even though I cannot vouch for this implicitly), but when compared to the more relaxed English dub, they are often not within a reasonable degree of accuracy. In addition they seem to be somewhat out of sync to the action at times.
There are two soundtracks on the DVD, being the original Japanese Dolby Digital 2.0 soundtrack and a dubbed English Dolby Digital 2.0 soundtrack. I listened predominantly to the English soundtrack, and sampled the Japanese soundtrack.
The dialogue was clear and easy to understand throughout the episodes, whichever soundtrack you listen to. Naturally, since we are talking about animation, the usual sync issues are on display. Naturally, the English dub has a slightly more noticeable sync problem than the original Japanese soundtrack.
The original music for the series comes from Shiroh Sagisu, and continues in the fairly ordinary mode.
Both soundtracks are perfectly acceptable efforts, free of any apparent distortions or problems. The sound is quite open and does not have any indication of congestion. The front surround channels are reasonably well-used to give some decent presence to the sound but as usual there is nothing out of the rear channels at all. The bass channel does not get any work here at all. Really, the soundtracks are now a model of consistency.
|Surround Channel Use|
Another consistent, albeit completely inadequate, extras package.
Common with the recent releases in the series, there is some audio and animation but that is the extent of the enhancement here.
Going by the title of MAGI Data Files, this is actually just three rather shortish pages of text on the characters Angel #2 Lilith, Angel #17 Tabris and Young Asuka.
The obligatory collection of promotional trailers for other anime titles both available and coming soon. The package this time offers Bubblegum Crisis 2040, Sin - The Movie, Martian Successor Nadesico, Spriggan and Gasaraki. All are presented in a Full Frame format apart from Spriggan, which is an approximate aspect ratio of 1.78:1. They uniformly come with Dolby Digital 2.0 sound and are not 16x9 enhanced. There is no time information encoded in the trailers, which is annoying, as is the fact that they are mastered in a looping manner. The technical quality is good enough although all suffer somewhat from grain and Gasaraki suffers somewhat from aliasing, especially in the closing titles. If this sounds familiar, it should do - they have been virtually identical now for three straight DVDs.
A single page of text to let us know who was responsible for the DVD.
As far as we can ascertain the only difference between the Region 1 and Region 4 releases is some additional soundtrack options on the Region 1 release.
Neon Genesis Evangelion Collection 0:8 contains the conclusion of the series and therefore should not be considered a place to start investigating the series! It ties up a number of issues and provide clues as to the interconnections between certain characters, including Rei Ayanami. The DVD has been given another good transfer across the board. Now all we need is the films....
|DVD||Pioneer DV-515, using S-Video output|
|Display||Sony Trinitron Wega (80cm). Calibrated with Video Essentials. This display device is 16x9 capable.|
|Audio Decoder||Built in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Video Essentials.|
|Speakers||Energy Speakers: centre EXLC; left and right C-2; rears EXLR; and subwoofer ES-12XL|