Last week, my computer died. Blue Screens of Death and repeated systems failures…it was so nostalgic. I hadn’t had a computer do that since, oh, 2003 or so. I’m pretty sure what finally broke the camel’s back was this BD set. ^_^ The BD software I had came with the computer. It was ass from the get-go and when I put this Blu-ray in, I think it died trying to play it. One OS reinstallation later, and a new bit of BD software and we’re good to go. I learned something important while my computer was dying. When your computer is crashing, you really learn what is important to you. Thankfully, I keep pretty good backups. Let this be a reminder to you to back your computer up. ^_^
The Aoi Hana Blu-ray Box Set (青い花 Blu-ray BOX) is absolutely for super-fans of the series or obsessive videophiles. It has nearly no extras of any kind, just a small pamphlet with character bios and art from the individual disc covers (most of which we received in the pamphlet released as an extra with the English-language box set from RightStuf. )
What you do get is beautiful visuals made even more beautiful. The quality of the light through the leaves as A-chan walks to school, or the way the sun filters through windows is, honestly, mesmerizing.
No new video content is included and as this is a Japanese release only, there are no subtitles. But, after watching the anime so many times and reading and re-reading the first volume, I was able to understand the words without difficulty. It’s not particularly complex dialogue, you have to admit.
Let me take a moment and talk up iDeer. When I was rebuilding my hard drive, I looked for a slim media player that would play DVD/BD and data files. iDeer has a trial, so I was able to take it for a spin. Not only did it play my American BDs and Japanese BDs well, it had no trouble with DVDs or .avis. They’re having a sale right now and I’m totally behind paying for what I use, so I coughed up a mere $50 for the “lifetime” (hahahahah!) updates. So far, it’s been about a million times better than any previous DVD/BD player software I’ve had. Faster, no cloggy home screens, easy to understand menus. I hate wasting time with tech when all I want to do is watch a thing. If you like futzing, this might be too easy for you. ^_^
So, other than the small technicality that trying to play this set originally killed my computer (which was totally the fault of the software, not the disk) this box set was fantastic. Gorgeous in every way and a lovely addition to my collection.
Art – 10 That’s why you’d get it
Story – 10
Characters – 10
Yuri – 8
Service – 3
Overall – 10
Everything else remains as it has always been, with the addition of the extra lovely art.
Thanks to James W. for making this review possible!