10.4 C
New York
Friday, November 27, 2020
Advertisement

Little Busters!: Season One — Collection Two (Episodes 14-26) Blu-ray Review

little-busters-S1-C2-bluray-coverU.S. Release

– –

The Series

[Rating:3.5/5]

Little-Busters-S1-C2-BD_01

Little Busters! (リトルバスターズ!) is an anime series based on a visual novel. I’ll admit upfront that this sub-genre of anime tends to be one of my least favorite mostly because it seems difficult to adapt the non-linear gameplay of the visual novel format to an anime series that requires some formal storytelling. Little Busters! is no exception to this rule, regrettably.

The game is a romance visual novel, and the anime sort of captures that, but not quite. Set in high school, the series concerns itself with a group friends from childhood who want to hold onto their youth as long as possible before they have to move on, some of them in their final year and readying to graduate. The de facto leader of the group seems to be the charismatic Kyouske, a senior, who decides to bring them all together to form a casual hardball team. Unfortunately, the creators of the anime series don’t settle on Kyouske as their protagonist, but rather the rather bland Riki, who seems almost too young to even be in high school and doesn’t have much of a personality at all. The other core members of the group are Rin, Kyouske’s younger sister, a shy girl who has trouble speaking to other people, especially other girls, and is obsessed with cats. Then there are Riki’s roommate Masato who is obsessed with his muscles and working out, and Kengo, a skilled kendo martial artist who speaks in idioms. Kyouske assigns Riki the task of finding more members for their baseball club, dubbed the “Little Busters”, so that they have enough members for a team. Through his searches, they meet a varied and eccentric array of girls from their school who all join the Little Busters, including the happy-go-lucky Komari, the prankster Haruka, the foreign student Kudryavka who’s part-Japanese and has a slight understanding of English, the elegant, and nearly perfect at everything Yuiko, whom everyone looks up to, and the quiet and retiring Mio who always carries a parasol.

In this second collection (the second half of the first season), the series expands. Riki learns about Mio’s missing shadow and her alternate personality, Midori. Plus, the shocking truth about Haruka’s family history and her battle’s with the head of the school disciplinary committee, Kanata, come to light. We also get a story arc with the irresistibly cute Kudryavka, whose mother comes into the picture and turns out to be a national hero in her homeland.

I felt the first half of this series was uneven at best, but this second half of the collection works to smooth over many of the rough edges and answer a lot of the questions, especially why Haruka and Kanata look so similar. Riki is still a very non-distinct and ineffectual lead character with little charisma, but the strength of the story arcs help to shift focus away from him and prop up the series.

Video Quality

[Rating:4/5]

Little-Busters-S1-C2-BD_02

Collection Two of Little Busters! Season One comes to Blu-ray with the same AVC/MPEG-4 1080p encodement. It looks just as good as its first half, with rich color reproduction and a reasonable amount of detail apparent in the line art. Some slight banding can be still be spotted in the color fills and there’s a soft look to the overall image, but it isn’t too much of a distraction from what is an otherwise strong transfer.

Audio Quality

[Rating:4/5]

Little-Busters-S1-C2-BD_03

Little Busters! Season One – Collection Two also has Japanese and English lossless soundtracks in DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0 (48kHz/24-bit). They both convey the dialogue well and provide wide stereo imaging. The musical score, which consists of a lot of upbeat piano-based tunes, comes across well, with good dynamics and a natural sound.

Supplemental Materials

[Rating:1.5/5]

Little-Busters-S1-C2-BD_04

We get just a little bit more in the way of promotional materials for the series on this second half of the release.

The supplements:

  • Japanese Promo (1.78:1 1080p/24; 00:01:39)
  • Japanese TV Promos (1.78:1; 1080p24; 00:02:50)
  • Japanese BD Promos (1.78:1; 1080p/24; 00:02:16)
  • Clean Opening Animation
  • Clean Closing Animation
  • Sentai Filmworks Trailers
  • Disc Credits

The Definitive Word

Overall:

[Rating:3.5/5]

Little-Busters-S1-C2-BD_04

I was disappointed after viewing the first half of Little Busters!, but I have come around just a little bit with a second half to the series that has helped to bring some of the characters a little more into focus. The series is still a bit uneven with an uncharismatic lead character and character designs that bleed together into a monolith, but there have been worse.

Additional Screen Captures

Available on The Right Stuf

[amazon-product]B00HQI72UK[/amazon-product]

Little-Busters-S1-C2-BD_05

Little-Busters-S1-C2-BD_06

Little-Busters-S1-C2-BD_07

Little-Busters-S1-C2-BD_08

Little-Busters-S1-C2-BD_09

Little-Busters-S1-C2-BD_10

Little-Busters-S1-C2-BD_11

Little-Busters-S1-C2-BD_12

Available on The Right Stuf

[amazon-product]B00HQI72UK[/amazon-product]

Advertisement

Related Articles

My Hero Academia: Heroes Rising (Blu-ray Review)

An excellent entry (or farewell?) for this beloved franchise with lots of action and great animation.

Train to Busan Presents: Peninsula (Blu-ray Review)

This is an uneven but still fun to watch sequel to the 2016 smash hit zombie/action movie lands on Blu-ray with a rollicking Atmos mix.

Chernobyl (4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Review)

The account of the 1986 Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant disaster in Ukraine, Soviet Union, and the subsequent health and political fallout is told in five gripping episodes.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Stay Connected

301FansLike
0FollowersFollow
724FollowersFollow
- Advertisement -

Notice of Compliance with FEDERAL TRADE COMMISSION 16 CFR Part 255

In accordance with the Federal Trade Commission 16 CFR part 255 guidelines, this website hereby states that it receives free discs and other theatrical or home entertainment “screeners” and access to screening links from studios and/or PR firms, and is provided with consumer electronics devices on loan from hardware manufacturers and/or PR firms respectively for the purposes of evaluating the products and its content for editorial reviews. We receive no compensation from these companies for our opinions or for the writing of reviews or editorials.
Permission is sometimes granted to companies to quote our work and editorial reviews free of charge. Our website may contain affiliate marketing links, which means we may get paid commission on sales of those products or the services we write about. Our editorial content is not influenced by advertisers or affiliate partnerships. This disclosure is provided in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR § 255.5: Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.

Latest Articles

My Hero Academia: Heroes Rising (Blu-ray Review)

An excellent entry (or farewell?) for this beloved franchise with lots of action and great animation.

Train to Busan Presents: Peninsula (Blu-ray Review)

This is an uneven but still fun to watch sequel to the 2016 smash hit zombie/action movie lands on Blu-ray with a rollicking Atmos mix.

Chernobyl (4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Review)

The account of the 1986 Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant disaster in Ukraine, Soviet Union, and the subsequent health and political fallout is told in five gripping episodes.

2067 (Blu-ray Review)

With the world deforested and people dying from a deadly disease caused by synthetic oxygen, a quiet tunnel worker receives a message from the future and must save humanity in this uneven but watchable dystopian Aussie indie sci-fi thriller.

The Irishman (Criterion Collection) (Blu-ray Review)

Martin Scorsese's Academy Award-nominated (Best Director) late career crime world epic gets the Criterion Collection treatment it deserves.
%d bloggers like this: