Anime Blu-ray/DVD Combo Review: Star Blazers 2199 Part One

Star Blazers 2199 Part One is a Blu-ray/DVD combo pack that includes two Blu-ray Discs and two DVDs, and each format contains the first 13 episodes of the series. The language options available on this release are the original Japanese audio with English subtitles and an English dub.

Star Blazers 2199 Part One
English Publisher: FUNimation Entertainment
Format: Blu-ray/DVD Combo
Release Date: July 31, 2018

When I heard the news that Crunchyroll would be streaming Space Battleship Yamato 2199, I was thrilled to see this reboot of a franchise I grew up watching. I had heard a lot of good things about it, so I looked forward to seeing it for myself and to make my own opinion on it.

I admit that while I was very hopeful about the reboot, I was also a little concerned. There’s been good reboots of my childhood favorites but they have typically been outweighed by the not good reboots. After watching the first episode, though, I could already tell that even though changes had been made to the original, it was still very recognizable to viewers who have nostalgia for the original franchise.

The basic storyline is still the same between the two series. The Gamilans (aka Gamilons) are attacking Earth with radioactive planet bombs, sending the human race to live underground. But the radiation is heading underground, and it’s predicted that Earth only has about one more year before it becomes unlivable. Thanks to Queen Stasha (aka Starsha), plans and information are sent to Earth in order for them to travel to Iscandar and bring back the Cosmo Reverser in order to rid the Earth of the pollution. A group of Earthlings take off in a retrofitted Japanese battleship (the Yamato) to make the journey.

However, this reboot introduces changes that, in my opinion, help to make the story more realistic and more dimension to the characters. One of the things I appreciated about this reboot is the fact that there are more prominent female characters in the cast compared to the original.

I also think new characters introduced in the series, such as Yamamoto, Misaki, Niimi, Shinohara, Hoshina, and Itou all added something to the series by being included.

Near the end of the episodes included in this set, we start seeing some major divergences between the reboot and the original source material. However, I believe that these changes worked well for the story that they were setting out to tell for Space Battleship Yamato 2199.

The Blu-ray video for this set has 1080p High Definition 16:9 (HD Native), and the audio includes DolbyTrueHD: English 5.1 and Dolby TrueHD: Japanese 2.0. The audio on the DVDs include English 5.1 Surround and Japanese Stereo.

When it comes to bonus features, the second disc of both formats include a bonus feature labeled, “The Newest Frontier: Star Blazers: Space Battleship Yamato 2199,” an audio commentary on episode nine, promo videos, and trailers for other FUNimation releases. “The Newest Frontier” runs for about 19 minutes and has interviews with some of the voice actors and social media staff involved with Star Blazers: Space Battleship Yamato 2199. While I appreciated hearing the voice actors who grew up watching the original Star Blazers making references to the original, I was a little frustrated that some of the voice actors can’t pronounce some of the Japanese names properly, even though they’re working on the show. The promo videos run for about nine minutes and are Japanese advertisements for their home video releases of the series.

If you watched Star Blazers: Space Battleship Yamato 2199 online and enjoyed it, then I would highly recommend adding this release to your anime home video library.

One comment

  1. AstroNerdBoy · July 23, 2019

    Yeah, I was mostly highly impressed with the reboot. I was annoyed that the subtitles used “Commander” as a translation for “-san,” even when the person’s rank might be “Captain” or “Admiral.” If they weren’t going to use Japanese honorifics, at least use the character’s actual rank and not one you’ve just made up.

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