Shakugan no Shana: Season One Box Set (BLU-RAY)

Shakugan no Shana

On Blu-Ray: 
Tuesday, August 21, 2012

In the world of Shakugan no Shana, or just Shana, some people have been dead for awhile and in their place torches have taken residence, up keeping their lives and living on with the thoughts and feelings of the departed. One day their torches go out and the world shifts to fill in the gap. That person never existed to the world. Their very image becomes less then a faded memory.

In the meantime there are beings who balance the world of torches. There are Denizen, malicious creatures that feed on the lives of the torches, and there are Flame Hazes who fight to keep the Denizens from using the world as their feeding grounds. There are other mysterious beings who roam the world as well, choosing to take sides on occasion for their own purposes.

During a daylight feeding frenzy a boy named Yuji is somehow able to remain animated inside of the frozen world where the Denizen and Flame Hazes do battle. It turns out that Yuji is not your average boy but a special torch, one that contains a prize inside, a prize that makes him very valuable to both sides. During the attack Yuji meets the red haired flame haze, who he later names Shana, and soon after the two of them become intertwined in their fates. Shana wants to keep an eye on Yuji just in case a Denizen tries to get to his prize again and Yuji must come to grips with the fact that he hasn’t existed in quite awhile and that one day, when his torch passes, no one will remember him. It makes him an oddly unique torch to Shana and she must soon come to grips with her feelings about Yuji before they end up costing her, her life.

Shana is an amazing anime with such a fantastic story. The action is great, the characters are well defined and with purpose, and the story, though it has it’s filler episodes, really does progress well. I really enjoyed Shana. So how did it look on Blu-Ray.

I made the mistake of putting in the DVD copy of Shana and watching all of the first episode before realizing what I’d done. I figured maybe the Blu-Ray just looked terrible. After realizing what I did I thought it would be great to compare the picture quality from one format to the other and watched the first episode of Shana on Blu-Ray again. Really, not much difference.

I was pretty disappointed that Shana looked so terrible on Blu-Ray. Color was muddled looking, definition was poor, and the picture just looked unacceptably soft. I’ve had my moments with some Funimation releases where I thought the picture looked a tad bit under par but this release has to be the worst by far I’ve ever seen come out of the Funimation camp.

Audio is decent presented in an English and Japanese Dolby TrueHD 2.0 soundtrack. I don’t know if this was all that was available to them but it got the job done just the same.

You get three separate short’s series featuring chibi character from the show. Good for a few chuckles but not something I imagine I’ll be visiting again. Along with that you get all of the usual; Textless opening and closing songs, trailers, and DVD version.


AJ Garcia
Review by AJ Garcia
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