Release Date: 20th August 2014
Running Time (mins): 90
Audio Languages: Japanese, English
Audio Formats: 2.0 Subtitle Languages: English
Aspect Ratio: 16:9
Buy Direct from SIREN VISUAL
Parasite dolls is an Anime that stands out from a crowded genre, it is unique in its own right for an intriguing concept and fantastic acting. Set in the same universe as bubblegum crisis, this is a world populated with A.I known as boomers. These boomers are robotic and have been placed in modern day to assist with humans as tools. There is a number of things that make us question why society treats the boomers so poorly. It has a high influence of the replicants from blade runner. There has been a recent out break of madness from these boomer with some malfunctioning and others going crazy, but there has to be something more behind it. This is when the Lieutenant Basil "Buzz" Nikvest is brought in his partner is also a boomer.
He is part of a secret police force as part of the AD police, someone is killing boomers and in particular ones in the red light district. We learn that boomers are also used for pleasure, even as prostitutes. What this turns into is a noir, with the audience guessing who is behind the chaos; the so called 'puppet master'. We also have young and enthusiastic member of Branch called Angel, she spends most of her time undercover and decides to team up with Buzz in the investigation.
The soundtrack is a highlight of the series, with it large trip hop influenced beats, appropriately pushing forward the story. The futuristic punk setting really makes it stand out, presenting a dystopian future where technology has created mankind to go backwards, where it has overtaken over everyday lives.
The acting in parasite dolls is another very strong point, David Born who is a veteran voice actor gives a real personality to the lieutenant. His texan voice really does differ from anything I've ever seen in an anime. Also animation wise it stands out for its time period of the late 90's, with detail put into ever aspect. The anime is divided into three chapters, the first two really deal with the complex story. The third one is set 5 years later with a new villain is in charge of the Boomers, planning all forms of evil. It interesting to see these characters age over the 5 year period. Overall Parasite Dolls is a high entertaining series through its great acting, unique post punk setting and blade runner influences.
Siren visual presents the Anime in its original aspect ratio of 4:3, despite the website saying 16:9. Some releases around the world present it in 16:9, cropping the image as it was originally broadcasted. The colours are rich and vibrant, night scenes of the city stand out with dark greens and blue. There is no signs of trailing in the video and it is a very clean print. Most Anime was projected to film and this has no digital grain or noise to be seen.
Audio: Presented in its original 2.0 sound mix, its impresive considering this was made for low grade Hi-Fi Systems in 1998. The bass is heavy with the funky beats from the soundtrack kicking in. The sound effects are also very loud in occasions, causing the system to rumble. Dialogue comes off clear, overall a great score.
This title has been out of print for a long time, so it's good to see Siren rescue it and give it a proper release. Don't hesitate to pick up this title, if your after an anime out of the ordinary.