Review: Seraph of the End Season One Part Two [Blu-ray]

Release Date
5/12/2016
Format
Blu-ray / DVD
Studio / Publisher
WIT Studio / Universal Pictures UK
Certificate
15
Language / Subtitles
English, French, German, Japanese / English, Dutch, French, German
Episodes
13-24 (12) + Specials
Discs
2
Run Time
265 Minutes

The second part to the popular Seraph of the End anime adaptation by WIT Studio is here. Dubbed Seraph of The End: Battle in Nagoya (Nagoya Kessen-hen) we see the Moon Demon Company conduct a full-on assault against the vampires of Nagoya, but is everything all that is seems within the Japanese Imperial Demon Army? Can the vampires really be defeated or are other factors in play in the grand scheme of things? We find out in Seraph of the End Season One Part Two from Universal Pictures UK.

“It’s the beginning of the end for Yuichiro and the Moon Demon Company as the final twelve episodes of Seraph of the End Season One explode across the screen in this limited special collector’s edition set! With Mika lost to the vampires in the Battle of Shinjuku, Yuichiro and his squad must truly master their Cursed Gear if they hope to survive. But when you are literally dealing with a devil every day, disaster is only one wrong move away. When a new threat rises in the form of Kureto Hiragi, the cruel lieutenant general of the Imperial Demon Army and a second war front in Nagoya, Guren and his team are sent on a suicide mission to destroy all vampire nobles. Thus the stage is set for the last stand of humanity as battles are joined, loyalties are tested and the final secret of the Seraph of the End is revealed.”Universal Pictures UK

With the initial world-building of the first part of Seraph of the End out of the way, we can finally get knee-deep in some great action and even deeper story elements. For the most part, there is definitely a lot more action involved in this part of the series and that’s great. If the first part lacks anything it was probably some action though what we did see was great. So with the action scenes now taking up a much larger portion of this part of the series you’d expect the story progression to take more of a backseat. It does in terms of lengthy dialogue scenes and world-building but here I feel that the story really opened up. From the limited interactions with vampire nobles that aren’t just fighting, the story has developed some very interesting elements going forward.

As I’m up to date with the manga, via the Weekly Shonen Jump app, I can tell you that the story really gets crazy going forward, in a good way. This, coupled with the ending of the series, and the revelations that bring, really makes me want a continuation as soon as possible. I feel that the story could have gone in more boring, predictable, ways and thankfully it hasn’t and I look forward to reading each month. Therein possibly lays an issue as the series is a monthly publication and given that we’ve already seen a 24 episode adaptation there isn’t enough material yet to produce a continuation. WIT Studio, based on Attack on Titan, seem happy to wait for that source material before continuing and hopefully that will be the case with Seraph of the End.

Visually, as with most part release, there’s not much to add apart from reaffirming the fact that I still love the traditionally drawn style backgrounds. Used throughout the series and to fantastic results as the series looks amazing. Not to be outdone though the character designs continue to impress as do the action scenes of which there are plenty. If the first part of the series left you wanting more from battles especially between those who have demon powers and the vampire nobles then this part will definitely have you covered.

I decided to watch this set with the English dub this time around and on the whole, it was an enjoyable experience. All the voice actors felt natural for the characters they were portraying bar one. Ashuramaru is the English dub I just couldn’t get on with. Colleen Clinkenbeard’s version of the character felt like a really odd approach, using a typical shonen type voice much like the one she uses for One Piece’s Monkey D. Luffy really doesn’t fit. The Japanese version by Hibiku Yamamura feels so much more natural for the character and keeps the mysterious nature of Ashuramaru intact.

I mentioned in my review of part one that the soundtrack, while subtle, was great and building the tension throughout the series. Part two is no different and I even felt that soundtrack added a lot more to what was happening on screen which is great when a soundtrack manages to do that. I felt it was very impactful and it made that viewing experience just that touch more immersive and enjoyable. The opening theme this time around is “Two souls -towards the truth-“ by fripSide and the ending theme is Nagi Yanagi’s Orarion both are enjoyable but not that standout.

Now when it comes to extras, Universal’s track record is certainly in their favour based on their previous two sets in Seraph of the End and The Heroic Legend of Arslan which were fantastic. The quality of the physical extras included is some of the best I have seen, period. This release is no different and comes with art cards, character cards, a poster, a 30-page book of character profiles and background info together with a fantastic set of lenticular chibi stickers. The lenticular chibi stickers, in particular, are something we never see and I love them, they are different and unique. If you want to see the extras in a more hands-on environment then make sure you give our unboxing of Seraph of the End Season One Part Two over at our Japan Curiosity YouTube channel (coming soon). If you like what you see then why not enter our competition to win your very own copy of Seraph Of The End: Series 1 Part 2 right here!seraph-part2-exploded-pack

Verdict
If you own Universal Pictures UK’s previous release of Seraph of the End or The Heroic Legend of Arslan then you know the quality we’re talking about when it comes to their collector’s editions. Seraph of the End Season One Part Two is a fantastic quality release and at the current price point is definitely worth investing. It also helps that the series is good and enjoyable and Seraph of the End is a brilliant adaptation by WIT Studio. I highly recommend the series and this release as a collector’s edition even more so.
9
GREAT