Blu-Ray Review: Kill la Kill - Volume One (2013)

Posted by Retrokaiser On Tuesday, October 28, 2014 0 comments

"Kill la Kill - Volume One" is an animated action comedy series about a seventeen year old girl named Ryuko Matoi.  Ryuko is a woman on a mission as when she was little she suffered a great tragedy as her father was murdered by a mysterious killer that left behind one giant red scissor. Ryuko now uses the giant one armed scissor (cut away, cut away*) to try to avenge her father with and get revenge on the killer.  Ryuko has done some information digging and has a hunch to who the killer is and transfers herself to a school to where they might be.  This is no ordinary school as it's a hellish place where it's a fight for life just to get to class.  The reason why is due to how the students are ranked, the lowest rank is "Zero Stars" and the highest is "Three Stars".  The reason why there are ranks is due to the uniforms that the characters wear as the school uniform has some powers and the higher the rank, more power you get.  Ryuko makes it to school and within the first five minutes of being there she picks a fight with the student council as she suspects the leader of knowing who killed her father.  Sadly Ryuko gets her butt whooped but makes a quick escape before the student council tries to takes away her weapon.  Later that day she goes down to her old house where the tragedy happened but falls down a mysterious trap door.  She lands safely in a pile of clothes but she isn't alone as there is a creature down there that thirsts for blood and that creature is...  A "Sailor Uniform"?  That's right it's a sailor uniform.  The sailor uniform spots Ryuko and forces itself on her (not in that way, sickos) and by that I quite literally mean "on her" as it forces her to wear it.  Turns out the sailor uniform isn't a bad guy after all and it could actually help her beat the student council but with a catch as the uniform needs blood to live.  Ryuko accepts the partnership with the sailor uniform and thus she tries her best to avenge her father.  (Click "Read More" to read the full review).

The story in this show is far from being original but this show does this kind of story in a way to where it feels very fresh to where it could pass off as an original show.  This show is also very high paced to where it feels like that there are three episodes squeezed into one but done well to where each episode doesn't feel rushed.  The drama in this show is very over dramatic but it works well in this case as this is a very over-the-top show.  The over-the-top element in this show does not feel forced one bit as it flows very naturally and that leads to some very crazy and awesome action scenes and some pretty good comedy.

There's a decent amount of nudity in this show and it is also very over-the-top to where it's mainly used for comedic purposes and it was actually funny and didn't feel sleazy or uncomfortable at all which is a very hard thing to do in anime.  I did also notice that this show likes to reference other anime shows and this is one of those shows where it picks some pretty obscure references to where you'd had to watch the show that this show is referencing from start to finish.  Just like watching "The Simpsons (1989 - Ongoing)" you'll get a few gags that'll have you pausing the show to spot them and they were just as funny as the rest of the gags and I have to give this show credit for being spot on with the humor (well at this stage at least as we are only four episodes in at this point).

Characters in this show were very good with fresh personalities that are all unique to each character.  I really enjoyed the sailor uniform named "Fresh Blood" and not just because of how Ryuko looks while dressed up in it.  I liked Fresh Blood's personality as he was both extremely perverted and funny to the point of every thing he does ends up being cute and charming.  Heck,  I couldn't even find a single character in this show that didn't stick out...  Excluding the faceless onlookers that lurk in the crowd that is.

One thing that bugs me about this series is that it is being released with only four episodes on a disc as it's an outdated concept.  Another reason why I'm not liking how this release only has four episodes is due to me fearing that I'm giving this show too much praise way too soon but that could just be my paranoia kicking in.  A problem I have with the show itself is that there is one filler episode on this volume and while it ended up being a decent episode overall I did also find this episode to drag out a little during some scenes.

The art-work in this show looks great with a decent amount of detailing and great coloring.  Backgrounds in this show are interesting to look at with a lot of new things to spot with each viewing.  Characters in this show look good but there are a lot of characters that have some very generic designs but oddly enough you won't find yourself annoyed by that like you would with a show like "Attack on Titan (2013)" ( Attack on Titan characters are generic looking, get over it).  The main character herself (Ryuko) is far from generic looking as she looks very original and is also memorable.  Animation in this show is great as it is very smooth and fluent despite how crazy the show can get and this show gets huge props for not cutting any corners.  This is also an anime where you just have to watch it in HD (high definition) as anything lower than 1080p (maybe even 720p) removes a lot of the charm found in the art-work so look for the Blu-ray version first before going for the DVD.

Japanese dub in this show is pretty decent with voices that worked with the characters and acting that gets you immersed with the characters.  This release does include an English dub but something this crazy has to be seen with the Japanese dub for the full insane effect.  Music in this show was a little forgettable and I personally can't remember a single track found in this show. 

Nothing much in the special features section as you only get the text-less versions of the opening and closing credit sequences.  They were alright as they both had some decent visuals and decent rock music.  There isn't much more I can say about the features as there isn't much to say but I do recommend checking them out at least once.

Overall I really enjoyed watching this volume and it has gotten me super excited for the rest of them but it's a shame we don't have collections containing more than four episodes yet.  Despite all that I am recommending that you go out and check this one out and make sure to get the Blu-Ray edition instead of the DVD (unless you have a great excuse) as this show really benefits from that format.  There isn't many anime out there that is like this show with the only other series I know of being "FLCL (2000 - 2001)".  Great volume.

*Reference to the song "One Armed Scissor" by "At the Drive-in".

Title: Kill la Kill - Volume One
Animation/Production Studio: Trigger
Genre: Animation/Anime, Action, Comedy, Drama, Avant-garde, New Wave
Running Time: 100 minutes (4 Episodes)
Distributor: Madman Entertainment
Rating: M15+ (Animated violence, nudity)
Price: $34.95
Recommended: Yes


Post a Comment