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Hellsing Ultimate: Volumes 1-4 Collection (BLU-RAY)

Hellsing Ultimate

Studio(s): 
On Blu-Ray: 
Tuesday, October 30, 2012
Grade:
A-
Discs: 
5
Did You Know?

This is the first time the series has appeared on Blu-Ray.

Back when Hellsing, Like Full Metal Alchemist, began airing in its anime form, the manga edition for the series from which it was adapted was not finished. That being said the anime had to take liberties with the storyline in order to close out its run. Sound familiar? Well as sort of a reboot Hellsing was redone under the Hellsing Ultimate title. The series was condensed to several OVA’s in which the gore was gorier, the violence more violent, and the awesome factor blown up ten fold. It pretty much left the earlier series in the dust. So what’s this Hellsing anime about?

As you all know Hellsing was the last name of the infamous monster hunter Abraham Van Helsing (the title taking liberties with an extra L thrown in the mix) of Bram Stokers 1897 Dracula novel. Hellsing, in this instance, is a corporation run by Integra Hellsing, last heir to the family name. Business for the Hellsing family is as usual, killing vampires, ghouls, or whatever may crawl out of the night. Business is booming.

The Ultimate series opens up in the past with Integra a frightened 10 year old whose father has just passed and whose uncle is furious she has become the successor and not he. So mad in fact he has gathered his men and plans to kill Integra. Guided by the dying words of her father she races to a location in her home where the Van Hellsing families saving grace is located. Her uncle catches up with her and attempts to kill her, in effect spilling her blood, albeit not in a fatal way. A corpse in the room turns out to be the Hellsing’s saving grace, a creature known as Alucard (read it backwards and cha ching).

Jump forward in time to England, overrun by a horde of vampires and their ghoul like minion armies. People don’t want to believe it’s really happening but someone has to handle it. Enter Integra Hellsing all grow up and head of the Hellsing Corporation. Her selling point, “If you want to kill a vampire, use an even more powerful vampire.” Enter Alucard.

I loved these OVA’s, great anime installments for any collection around this time (Halloween). The music is jazz cool, reminiscent of Cowboy Bebop or Samurai Champloo, the characters so wickedly awesome and in-depth, Alucard being the coolest, possibly of all vampire based anime. He’s a killing machine, sometimes brooding with dark humor, but the way he’s represented just reads as a character that’s happiest when he’s killing, almost as if it is an art. We get some other characters along the way such as policewoman turned vampire slave Seras Victoria, Father Alexander Anderson (who sounds very much like a bad ass Gerard Butler), Luke and Jan Valentine, two vampire brothers who plan on taking out the Hellsing corporation, and more. There’s never a dull moment in this series. Definitely not for the squeamish. So how did it look on Blu-Ray?

PICTURE QUALITY:
Hellsing Ultimate looks pretty good, not perfect, but worth the purchase price. There are some soft sections of the series, especially in the first couple of OVA’s, but even in their somewhat flawed presentation there are enough very awesome, highly detailed moments of clarity that raise the gore and dismemberment levels to an all time high. Stylistically Hellsing Ultimate has a lot to offer, the animation illustrations are amazing and the Blu-Ray presentation takes advantage of that, for the most part. If you watch the DVD versions you can plainly see the Blu-ray copies look ten times better.

Audio is as usual amazing.

BONUS FEATURES:
~Commentary Tracks: You get one for every OVA in the set.
~Interviews: Two of them.
~Features from Anime Expo 2007
~Promo Video’s: 7, if you count the trailer. Some don’t.
~Japanese Ending of episode IV.
~Major’s Speech, karaoke style.
~Trailers

 

AJ Garcia
Review by AJ Garcia
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