Review by Tom Edge
Madman (Australia) has just released their version of Haibane Renmei: New Feather with box.
Retail price is around $38.00 Australian.
As expected the release is very similar to the R1 release, the DVD contains episodes 1-4 subbed and dubbed in 16:9 format. Extras are as per R1, the Japanese Opening, a clean (no text) opening, previews for 2 -5 and a 30 page art gallery.
The menus are different, with a nice opening animation of feathers difting across a close up of a halo, a theme that follows through the other menu pages. For the scene select each episode has it's own menu page, the backgrounds are static with a different image from the opening shown for as if seen through part of a halo. The options for each episode are Opening, Part 1, Part 2 and Closing.
The trailers are different reflecting Madman's different liscenses.
The Box is slightly lighter construction than the R1 box with a similar layout to the R1 box but instead of a leather clad texture effect there is a bookcloth texture effect and all lettering on the sides and top are in a dull red foil which is both easier to read than the R1 box and very effective(not to say the R1 box titles are hard to read but there is a blurred/out of focus effect on them).
The DVD slicks are virtually the same with the exception that there are ratings labels on the front, rear and spine of the cover. If anyone is curious HR is rated "PG: Parental guidance recommended for persons under 15 years, mature themes" in Oz (one up from G which is about right IMHO). The images on the rear of the cover have been rearranged to make space for the standard DVD data box, ratings information and Madman Logos (which are also on the spine and front along with the Pioneer logos). The inside face of the slick is identical to the R1 slick, a light green close up of the cover image.
The inserts include the Hakusho booklet which I initially thought was a direct import as it is identical to the R1 booklet and does not have the Madman logo on it, but it has a slightly lighter cover than the R1 booklet so it is either from a different batch or a reprint.
There are no pencilboards included but there are two postcards, one is a copy of the image that is on the rear of the Rakka image on the R1 pencilboard but in a landscape cut and the other is a aqua washed close up of the cover image, also done in lanscape.
The disc is silkscreened with a full colour version of the cover image.
Madman appears to be issuing this series 2 months behind the R1 release (probably a contractural obligation) as volume 2 is listed for a December release and 3 for February (although the latter is not officially listed yet).
For all intents and purposes the two releases are the same but each has some nice details that the other doesn't have: R4 nicer menus and the foil lettering on the box, R1 slightly heavier box with pencilboards and an extra slick in the DVD (and comes out 2 months earlier !!).
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