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Dragon Ball Z - Level 1.1 (BLU-RAY)

Dragon Ball Z

On DVD: 
Tuesday, April 5, 2005
On Blu-Ray: 
Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Despite not having a new episode since the late 90s, Dragon Ball Z has managed to stay relevant through the years with its numerous DVD releases and remakes such as Kai. The latest in the line from Funimation is the original series remastered on Blu-ray. Dragon Ball Z Level 1.1 starts the series all over again with the first 17 episodes in HD. Is this truly the definitive version of the show or has it been one too many?

The original episodes aired in 1989 so there is only so much remastering can do. The picture quality still has a grainy texture but you can tell that it’s been improved. The colors are slightly brighter and the lines sharper. That being said, the image is far from what we would consider HD by today’s standards. While it still looks good for its age, viewing it on Blu-ray seems unnecessary. The show still retains its 4:3 fullscreen aspect ratio and the sound quality has a barely noticeable improvement.

-Dragon Ball Z: Film to Blu-ray
-Textless Opening Song
-Textless Closing Song

The Film to Blu-ray feature runs a little more than seven minutes and details the intense HD transfer process. It’s a shame really, because a lot of work went into cleaning up the original film but the improvements are minimal. Still, it’s an interesting watch nonetheless.

Overall, Dragon Ball Z Level 1.1 is disappointing when compared to previous releases. If you want to watch the original series, the Dragon Box releases will do just fine. At least with them you’ll get a fancy episode guide with each edition. Plus, the entire series is already out so you don’t have to wait for the Sagas you like. If you want DBZ on Blu-ray, I’d recommend Dragon Ball Z Kai. Not only does it look much better but it’s also more concise and action packed. Had this version been released earlier, it might have been better received. With so many versions already out there, it’s difficult to recommend it.

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Matt Rodriguez
Review by Matt Rodriguez
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