Not My Real Name | Cambridge Massachusetts, USA | 07/14/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I was actually turned off on the idea, initially. I'm not much of a heavy metal fan, and am certainly not fond of J-Rock. Therefore, I automatically assumed I wouldn't think much of it. However, I'm glad I had no choice but to give it a chance (my anime club was showing it). I even ended up liking most of the music!It's cute, has some fun gags (which get overused, of course), and an interesting premise. It even has some real depth, to it, and some serious themes. Unfortunately, it's not very clear whether or not the series will go anywhere, until about the 3rd disc (there are a total of 4, in this 13 episode series). In the 4th disc, they even manage to get a good bit more mileage out of the gags. Also, watch for the X-files reference.One neat thing about this series is that it presents a fairly unique and realistic picture of Japanese life. For example, you don't often see anime characters living in cramped company housing. You don't often see fairly realistic office environments depicted. You don't really even see normal Japanese people, or a realistic Japanese lifestyle, depicted in much depth. It also shows the Japanese perception of hard rock - both that of the fans and the societal views towards it.The down side is that you can tell that it was created on a limited budget. The art and colors were quite good, but it did have more still frames (usually slow pans across a single image) than usual. The animation (especially the CG scenes) and music were also reused a bit much. But, I'd rather see a strong story told on a limited budget, than the other way around!It does have some mature themes and scenes, but I promise if you watch through about the 3rd episode, you'll see that it's really not what it first appears to be (i.e. shameless glorification of sex & rock 'n roll)."
It's Anime like this that gives anime a good name
Chris Wheeler | Canton, New York USA | 11/12/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This DVD came out of nowhere and is easily one of Pioneer's best series. I bought it not knowing what to expect and was pleasantly suprised. This has one of the best soundtracks I have ever heard. I reccomend it to everyone that likes anime period."
Very refreshing and unique series
caryn5995 | Portage, MI United States | 11/12/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)
"At first glance, Black Heaven may not seem all that interesting. Music as a weapon, save the world, yeah, yeah, I saw all this years ago in Macross. However, Black Heaven manages to take this familiar theme and make it totally engaging. Oji is such a normal guy, right down to his character design, that it's almost impossible not to sympathize with him. Another thing this series proves is that you don't need great animation to tell a great story. The animation isn't really BAD, but it's nothing to write home about, either, and the CG is mediocre. But in truth, that doesn't even matter, because the series is completely character-driven - which is really more important."