The Truth Behind Anime Blu-rays
In such a rapid-technology improving world, it effects a lot of things on a grand scale, and certainly anime is one of them. In the past, we watched anime through tapes or TV, and now, we watch anime through DVDs or Blu-rays.
Blu-rays are of top tier quality currently, managing to hold up to 1080p HD content. They also scan images in progressive format, different from DVDs, which project images in an interlaced format. Progressive scan images are definitely clearer and sharper, so this pulls Blu-rays an obvious win.
Patently obvious, Blu-rays also have much more storage capacity then DVDs have, able to store up to around 25gb compared to the DVD’s seemingly tiny 4.7gb. One doesn’t require rocket science to understand that Blu-rays are superior, but are Blu-rays really all that good?
Aforementioned, the quick technology advancement of this world had effected a lot of things, and even anime falls victim to this “advancement.” Using the advantages of Blu-ray’s expensive prices, few jarring marketing strategies had been employed in order to pull buyers into purchasing these expensive looking discs; special unaired episodes, uncensored images, added contents, re-edited scenes and so on.
Blu-wraith: Of cause.. Everyone’s had their turn with me from recycle shop to recycle shop. I had been abused by so many players. Nobody would want to play this slutty Blu-ray.
Shinpachi: Sh-Should you really be so blue about nobody wanting to play you?
Gintoki: She’s a Blu-ray after all.
The biggest problem I see is that these types of marketing strategies, not only effected Blu-rays themselves but even on premiere TV. Take some violent anime for example, back then, the anime industry had no problem displaying bloody violence literally, with blood spraying everywhere and limbs getting cut off, major examples being School Days and Elfen Lied. Fast forward to the future, and we will take Mirai Nikki as an example. Those that watched the anime will notice that it censored almost everything, even a simple knife stab. In order to enjoy the anime without those “annoyances”, one will have to wait for the Blu-rays.
Of cause, those of the ecchi genre is a no brainer. By cunningly putting in “censors” like sunlights and silly icons, covering some bare spots, it skillfully teases the viewers, almost as if the staffs at the studios are sadistic in nature.
Perverted people (good thing I’m not one of them perverts) will indefinitely be pulled into buying the Blu-ray versions, so that they could enjoy their anime in full-blown quality. Indeed, sometimes, studios like AT-X who aired their anime first-hand uncensored is actually an admirable thing to do.
The worst part is buying a re-release of an anime in Blu-ray, which there are not much of a change in the first place instead of being a HD with some
very slightly added contents (could be just few mins long at best). It would be better if there’s a special episode but the values for these are quite questionable. A majority of them are ones which didn’t add much to the plot, and could be easily adapted in an OVA instead of re-releasing the whole show just to add these unnecessary contents. There are however, some excellent anime worth collecting their Blu-rays, and to top it off, their special episodes are ones which are more integrated into the plot, major examples being Steins;Gate and Persona 4.
As you can see, I have a very pessimistic opinion on Blu-rays, but of cause, it could be that I’m looking at things a bit too
blue-y negatively. It could be that I’m overlooking the positive sides of Blu-rays as some re-releases are definitely worth collecting, especially for the Blu-ray reruns of old anime. Graphics had improved so much that it’s definitely worth an applause, and the visuals improvements shown in these old anime reruns are indeed noteworthy. There are also anime with very high visual content like Fate/Zero, Mahou Shoujo Madoka Magica and the Monogatari series, which are worthy buying their Blu-rays purely just from their visuals. For me though, it is disappointing that I couldn’t find any other benefits aside from that. What do you all think about anime Blu-rays?