Review of Discotek Media’s Samurai Troopers OVA DVD Collection

Now that we discussed Bandai Entertainment’s OVA DVD release, it’s time to move on to the new edition from Discotek Media.

Click on the thumbnail to see the full-sized image appear in a new window/tab. (Images are hosted on my Photobucket account.)

DVD Cover:

The DVD case itself is the width of 1 DVD case. The DVD comes with a slip cover that goes over it.
Official OVA DVD Artwork DM full cover DM slip case

Unlike the Bandai Entertainment release, the DVD cover is not reversible. The only names and terms used are from Yoroiden Samurai Troopers. No mention of “Ronin Warriors” anywhere.

DVD Inserts:

Nothing. Zip. Zero. Nada. Feels like a missed opportunity here. This is what the inside of the case looks like.
DM inside case 1 DM inside case 2

One point to make is that this at least confirms what Discotek Media said in the past. The DVDs are single-sided.

Disc Menus:

DM OVA disc 1 menuDM OVA disc 2 menu

Moving your cursor over a selection turns the Rekka/Wildfire armor symbol red. Selected options use that gold circle you see under the “Play all.”
Side Note: Both discs play part of the “Stardust Eyes” song in the background when viewing the menu.

The Video (Screenshots):

First I’ll start off by saying that unfortunately the subtitling done on Discotek Media’s OVA DVDs are the exact same as the subtitles used in Bandai’s release. I, along with other fans, were hoping for a new subtitles to be done. This has disappointed quite a few fans and leaves us to wonder if the TV Series will also have the same Bandai subtitles as well. (Many people want new subtitles for the TV Series. In fact many fans are hoping the reason for the TV Series delay is because there will be new subtitles.)

The first problem I and many other fans noticed is ghosting or blurring during the first episode of the first OVA Gaiden. I, along with other fans, have sadly confirmed that the original Bandai release also had this ghosting effect going on with this episode. It’s noticeable during panning scenes and during transformation scenes. Clicking on the thumbnail below will, unfortunately, show how bad it can get. This was the most noticeable when watching the OVAs on my TV.

ghosting

After that first episode of Gaiden the video quality improves dramatically. The rest of the episodes of all of the OVAs don’t seem to have that ghosting/blurring issue anymore. In fact the quality looks fantastic! Here are some examples. (And even then my PC screenshots don’t do them justice.)

subtitles 1 subtitles 2

Note that subtitles for the episodes are in yellow. Subtitles for the songs are in green. Again the exact same subtitles as Bandai’s edition.

And this one I had to add because you see a mural with Sekhmet/Naaza fighting Cye/Shin. (In the armors designed for the play during Suzunagi’s time.) 😀

Message screenshot

Those few glimpses at Message/Edo era style Dark Warlord/Mashou armors is one of the few rare treats you’ll get as fans of those characters. Everything else with them in Message is sadly a flashback/re-use of the TV series animation.

In Summary:

It would have been nice to have some sort of insert in the DVD case. Major point to Bandai for doing that for their release. Subtitles are the exact same as the Bandai release and I am one of those people who wishes the new release got new subtitles to go with it.

Some of you who already have the OVAs from Bandai may be wondering if it’s worth the cost to purchase the Discotek Media edition. While of course the end result of that choice belongs to you, here some things to keep in mind.

  • Do your current DVDs have scratching or damage?
  • Are you tired of flipping over that disc after watching Gaiden to then watch Legend of the Inferno Armor?
  • Do you want something that takes up less space? (1 DVD disc width instead of 2 separate cases.)
  • Are you worried that the Discotek discs will eventually go out of print just like the Bandai ones did?
  • Are you a fanatic that just wants both collections? (Which is perfectly fine by the way.)

Finally I would like to give a big shout out and many thanks to Discotek Media. Thank you for picking up this series and releasing it onto DVD again. You have breathed life back into this niche and wonderful fandom. I’m looking forward to the TV Series DVD Collection release.

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