Anime DVD Review: Megazone 23 Complete Collection

The Megazone 23 Complete Collection is a three-disc DVD set, and it includes the entirety of the Megazone 23 OVA series. This set was released by ADV Films in 2007.

Megazone 23 Complete Collection
English Publisher: Section 23 Films
Format: DVD
Release Date: December 11, 2007

When I first saw the cover for this set, I was wondering why the characters were drawn with blue skin, since there are no blue-skinned characters in Megazone 23. As for the rest of the packaging, it’s designed like a single DVD box, but there’s a flap inside that can hold two DVDs; there’s also a spot for a third DVD on the inside back of the box.

The first disc in the set contains the first Megazone 23 OVA. In the first story, a delinquent named Shogo ends up getting his hands on a prototype military motorcycle called the Garland, and also learns that it’s also actually 500 years later than he thinks and that he and the others in his community actually live on a spaceship. Shogo finds himself being hunted by the government, which has been trying to hide the truth from the people. In my opinion, this first story of Megazone 23 is the best; it has an interesting story to tell, and it’s rather easy to follow.

The first disc also contains several extras. First, there is a slideshow of production sketches; included in the sketches are drawings for characters, mecha, and locations in the story. There is a version of this episode of Megazone 23 that includes an audio commentary track by Matt Green (the director of the English dub), David Williams (the ADR producer), and Janice Williams (the DVD coordinator). I thought the commentary gave interesting backstory and history for both Megazone 23 and the anime industry in the mid-1980s. The remaining two extras on this disc are the DVD credits and trailers for properties that ADV Films was promoting at the time this DVD set was released.

The second disc contains the second Megazone 23 OVA. This episode essentially picks up where the first episode of the OVA ended, but only four characters carry over: Shojo, Yui, Eve, and B.D. Overall, this was a decent continuation of the first story, but the major issue for me was the drastic change in animation style between the two episodes. While the first episode looked like cartoon, the animation style in this episode gives the characters more of a “realistic” look; basically, think of the animation style in Akira. Most of the characters from the first OVA that appear in this episode were redesigned so drastically, that you only knew who they were supposed to be when someone referred to them by name. In addition, this episode has more violence and sex included than the first episode.

The second disc had less in the way of extras than the first disc. The only “real” bonus feature of this disc is a slideshow of production sketches that was done in the exact same manner as the production sketch slideshow on the first disc. Outside of that, the only other bonus features are the DVD credits and trailers for properties that ADV Films was promoting at the time this DVD set was released.

The third disc contains the rest of the Megazone 23 story. The remainder of the story takes place roughly 500 years after the end of the second episode, and the only carry-over from the original story is EVE (the AI program from the first two episodes). Early on in the story on this disc, I was wondering how much of a connection this final installment of the story had with the rest of Megazone 23. Later on, though, the story does tie back in better with the earlier portions of the story; unfortunately, by the time I finished this installment of Megazone 23, I wondered if it was truly necessary. While it appeared to try to wrap up the franchise, I was still left with unanswered questions or questions that I didn’t think had been answered satisfactorily.

The final disc has three extras. The first was another slideshow of production sketches, the second was the DVD credits, and the third were the trailers for the properties that ADV Films was promoting at the time this DVD set was released.

My biggest complaint with this set is the fact that the font used for the menu text can be rather hard to read; I found myself having to squint to try to figure out some of the letters. Outside of that, though, this is a decent DVD release for Megazone 23, and it allows viewers to have the entire story in one DVD set. Unfortunately, this DVD set is now “out of print,” which means you’ll have to look around for either new or used copies that are being sold through third-party sellers at sites such as Amazon.

I wrote this review after watching a copy of the Megazone 23 Complete Collection DVD box set that my husband and I purchased.

Additional post about Megazone 23:

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