Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Gunslinger Girl Box Set |
Viridian Collection 2
Genres: Action & Adventure, Drama, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Anime & Manga, Animation
The Social Welfare Corporation is a secret military force comprised of orphaned girls that have been "saved" by becoming more machine than flesh. Although they have erased their memories they are aware they are programmed ... more »
Similarly Requested DVDs
Veriedian Collection 2 aka The Fullscreen Edition
Ariolander | So Cal, USA | 02/02/2009
(4 out of 5 stars)
"For those of you who do not already know this is the 3rd release of this series. Actually 4th if you count the original single DVD release making this second Viridian Collection so I wanted to clear up the differences between all of them before you arbitrarily just buy the cheapest one.
The first release Gunslinger Girl: Complete Box Set is the original single DVD releases in a nice slip case box to store them in together. The second release Gunslinger Girl Box Set - Viridian Collection is the original Viridian Collection containing all of the first release including special features on the disks but in better looking if cardboard "gatefold" style packaging that takes up the size of about a single DVD case.
Just a word of warning unlike most "Viridian Collection"s this second release is more than a simple reprice w/ cheaper packaging and lack of inserts but the anime itself differs from all previous US releases. The earlier releases were all in anamorphic widescreen and this is the first time Gunslinger Girl has been released in fullscreen.
I guess you can say this fullscreen version is closer to the "original" TV airing in Japan but the others had an excellent 16:9 aspect ration and were enhanced for widescreen TVs like the later Japanese editions were. As for the packaging in this version it has changed yet again so instead of the cardboard "gatefold" style case it now comes in an "omni" case that holds 3 DVDs and is about the size of 1 standard DVD case.
Differences from the other boxes aside the anime itself it is excellent and highly recommended. One of my all time favorites.
Funimation you still owe me Gunslinger Girl Vol.3 from the contest I won @ Wizard World LA in 2006."
Review of this particular edition
Mr. T. P. | massachusetts, US | 03/13/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This is one of my favorite Japanese animation series, but instead of the show itself (you can find tons of reviews on that elsewhere), I'd like to talk about the product and packaging.
One has a choice between purchasing this and the previous thinpack collection by Funimation, the "Complete Box Set." I thought the design and art for this volume was a lot better, full of artsy scenes with interesting uses of light. The previous boxset just had somewhat bland pictures of the main characters on a white background. However, the cover image does look a bit "lolicon," which may turn off more prudish viewers.
The discs themselves seem to retain all the previous special features. My main dislike of this edition is that the packaging is very light. Instead of the "pop-out" dvd holders, it has cardboard cases you have to slide the DVD's out of. I don't know about you, but I'm always paranoid about my DVD's getting scratched while moving them in and out of such cardboard sleeves. I actually ended up storing them in clear CD jewel cases separate from the box.
This version is about $10 cheaper, so I guess I can't really complain, but I would have liked some sturdier and bigger packaging. There are also a few mistakes in episode labeling (the name of episode 9 on disc 2 is switched with another episode name, or something like that). It does seem like Funimation did cut a few corners with this new budget edition."
"They're Just Like Regular Children"
Jonathan Lane | Crestview Florida U.S.A | 04/04/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This is a review for the show, not this set.
(Quotes are paraphrasing, not exact wording).
Welcome to the Social Welfare Agency, a top secret part of the Italian government which, despite its name, has absolutely nothing to do with the Social Welfare of the nation's people. Instead, this agency deals with terrorists, the mob, and other such criminal organizations, by assassinating their leaders.
Now meet Harrietta, possibly the cutest little girl in the world, trained by the government to be the perfect killing machine, a weapon of war and destruction, a tool and nothing more. She is the perfect weapon, skilled in her trade, unquestionably devoted to her handler, Josay, able to go unnoticed because of her innocent and harmless appearance. After her parents were brutally murdered she was taken in by the Agency, her memory wiped clean, her organic body replaced with cyborg parts making her very much like Darth Vader from Star Wars Trilogy (Widescreen Edition with Bonus Disc) or the Major from Ghost in the Shell. She is a tool to be used and disposed of when her usefulness is done, but at the same time she is still the little girls she once was.
Gunslinger Girl is a show that I've been meaning to see for some time now. I've known about it since I started watching anime two years ago, but not until now have I had a chance to actually sit down and watch it. I thought I'd like it, after all sad and depressing anime's like Now and Then, Here and There (Complete Collector's Boxed Set) and There" and Grave of the Fireflies (2-Disc Collector's Edition) are among my all time favorites, but I had no idea how completely amazed I'd be with it.
Let's get the obvious out of the way; this is one shockingly grotesque show. Think about it, it's about little girls, some maybe as young as ten, being transformed from cute little school children into coldly efficient killing machines. Is there anything more disturbing then seeing a little pre adolescent girl wielding a machine gun and killing at will dozens of people? Is there anything sadder then said girl pleading to be allowed to do so again?
"I know I've only killed six people this month, but last month I killed at least twenty, so can't I come back to work?"
Although this show relies on its action and disturbing content early on to draw the viewer into the story, it doesn't dwell on it throughout the shows entirety. It isn't about the gun slinging at all, it's about the gunslingers and their handlers. None of the characters are wasted, especially the cyborg girls, each of whom received adequate detail to their characters and plenty of history. Herrietta, Triela, Ricko, Clide, Angelica, even the reclusive and barley mentioned Elsa (who looks a lot like Sara from "Now and Then, Here and There") were treated with just enough love and care to make their characters more then killing machines and into confused, emotional, and caring little girls simply doing their best to please those they love and feel needed. Their stories are the real meaning for this shows existence. One was born paralyzed; another was nearly killed by her parents who needed the insurance money. One by one their stories unfold. Each character has at least one episode devoted to them with Harrietta acting as the sometimes silent, sometimes active observer. Unlike other shows which try this approach, such as Air TV, Volume 1, these characters aren't dropped once they've produced the desired emotional effect. They all have a part to play in this story; each one relies on the others in order for the show to move forward. They need each other. But despite the attention to detail put into each character, in the end its Harrietta's story. She is the common denominator which glues the characters and events to one another.
Where the emotional stories lie exclusively with the cyborg girls, the moral, ethical, and philosophical dilemmas are for the "handlers," the men whose job it is to raise, train, supervise, and care for the girls, to deal with, and they are as different from one another as the girls they train. Josay, Harrietta's handler, feels guilty about the dehumanizing conditioning the girls are forced to go though and tries his best to alleviate that guilt by trading Harrietta as a little sister. He takes her on vacations to the Italian countryside, buys her expensive gifts, and tries his best to have her act as if she were a normal little girl. But deep down he knows that he, and the agency he serves, is merely using her as a tool; a means to an end. He deals with this guilt more and more as Herrietta's affection and emotional attachment to him grow stronger. He is a man torn between his duty and his love and affection for her.
Other handlers deal with their girls very differently. Some act cold and menacing towards their girls in order to instill fear and discipline, others simply treat then as if they were machines.
"They're cool and all; they can get you a soda if you ask them to, but it doesn't go beyond that to me."
No matter what the approach they take, the girls always develop a strong emotional attachment to their handlers and desire their affection above all else, with devastating consequences sometimes.
The animation in this show may not be flashy, but it's more then adequate for a show of this nature. The battle scenes are done extremely well, as one would expect, as well as the stunning scenery of Italy. The characters are drawn as cute as possible to make their action all the more shocking. The music isn't worth making a big deal out of. Although the background music serves its purpose and sets the mood very effectively, it isn't something to listen to by itself. It's rather simplistic. The opening and closing songs are likewise less then noteworthy.
Gunslinger Girl is not a show to be missed. Although it is very much like Ghost in the Shell in regards to the philosophical questions it raises, the depth of its characters and the attention to detail the creators put into making them is well worth the time, energy, and money. It may not be the best anime ever made, but it certainly is one of them. Good to see a depressing anime that doesn't drop the ball at the end.
Questions to ponder while watching.
1. Is Josay, Harrietta's handler, a moral person? Is his using Harrietta as a tool negated by the fact that he tries to make her happy? If he makes Harrietta happy, is he still acting immorally by using her, as the agencies pawn, as a tool?
2. Are the girls really human? If so, then why? What is it that makes them still human beings?
3. Do the ends justify the means? Does the fact that the agency uses these girls to foil potential terrorist plots which could kill innocent people make it right to use these girls as tools and weapons?
Replay value; High."
Politics seen through the eyes of children.
TastyBabySyndrome | "Daddy Dagon's Daycare" - Proud Sponsor of the Lit | 12/08/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Welcome to Secton 2, where the assassins are both proficient and hard to spot. That's because, in addition to having cybernetic enhancements and mindwipes to keep them conditioned, they are also little girls. If looked at as a morality issue, don't worry: Section 2 takes good care of their young killers. They assign each of them a "brother" to watch after their development, take only the worst cases and actually give them back life, and they work for the "betterment" of society. So what if nobody is allowed to see them in action, that innocents are sometimes killed, and if the lifespan of the girls can be altered if too much conditioning is used?
At least they get another chance at life.
It has been a while since I've seen an anime that was so collectively complete. Many stop taking lessons from prior shows and just get into killing, and others take the opposite approach and only look at life through political eyes. Gunslinger Girl does both of these and does it in a unique way: instead of having one point-of-view throughout the series, you see life through the girls and the brothers and other people that are involved in various incidents. This means that you see the problems that arise when connections run too deep, when a brother doesn't care, when things spin out-of-control, and through a variety of other measures. The art is superb, the stories are always good and keep building the characters throughout the process, and each person in the show is different. Gunslinger Girl makes sure to make each person a life unto themselves: they do not want confusion to reign, nor do they want generic copies to rule the day.
To say I recommend the series is an understatement. I sat down one day and watched the whole series all the way through, then say down again and watched it with others. As I did I caught little things that compounded in the stories, giving me a different perspective each time I watched. That meant that it felt like a new assault on my senses each time, with a range of emotions accompanying each show. If you have never checked out the series, this is a good way to do it. The set is really affordable now, is perfect for watching, and leaves little to chance when it comes to design. I like that - I needed something new in my life to make me want to watch anime again.
Many of the shows have become tired and this was a nice breath of air."