19 September 2017 by VegettoEX
18 September 2017 by VegettoEX
15 September 2017 by VegettoEX
Starting in 2003 and ending in 2005, Toei Animation, in cooperation with the DVD manufacturing company Pony Canyon, released a series of four box sets covering the entire Dragon Ball TV series property. In 2006, Toei Animation dropped Pony Canyon and released all of the Dragon Ball movie properties on their own in the fifth and final Dragon Box.
The Dragon Boxes were limited items in the truest sense of the word. An order start date would be announced several months in advance, as well as an order deadline. The ordering windows were typically several months in length, and all manufacturing of the box sets were based solely on the number of orders received. In other words, they only made enough boxes to satisfy the orders made within the given timelines, after which point production on the boxes ended indefinitely. With so few actual Dragon Boxes in circulation (most of which already in the loving arms of Dragon Ball fans), it makes finding these boxes nowadays somewhat difficult.
|Order Start Date:||N/A|
|Order Deadline:||28 February 2005|
|Announced Date:||25 May 2005|
|Delayed Release:||15 June 2005|
|Original Copyright:||1996 – 1997|
|Property Holders:||Bird Studio / Shueisha / Toei Co. Ltd. / Fuji TV|
|Encoding:||Region 2 / NTSC (Japan)|
|Discs:||11 discs + 1 special disc|
|Disc Format:||Single Sided / Dual Layered (discs 1-11)
Single Sided / Single Layered (disc 12)
|Video Format:||4:3 Standard Size|
|Running Time:||Approximately 1,600 minutes|
|Contains:||Dragon Ball GT episodes 01 through 64 (complete series), plus bonus features|
|Audio Format:||2.0ch monaural (presented in Dolby Digital)
TV Special presented in Dolby Digital stereo
— Specially designed box
— Picture labeled discs (uncommon for Japanese DVDs)
— 64-page book (fully colored)
— Capsule Corp. TV/DVD “Dragon Radar” remote controller
— Delay Bonus: Zenny, online questionnaire access, and a special desktop wallpaper
The box uses a special design made specifically for the Dragon Box series. It is a large solid box, inside of which it contains a series of “DVD books”. The outer box contains the Dragon Box GT logo on the front and spine, with a beautiful collage of Son Goku that wraps around the entire box. The box art was done by veteran Toei Animation artist Katsuyoshi Nakatsuru, which shows Goku’s progression from a baby, right up to Super Saiyan 4. As you can also see below, when the spines of the DVD books are placed together they create a large “DBGT”, with the full title of the box and number labeling right beneath it.
|Box Dimensions:||Height – 10 ¾ inches|
|Width – 7 ¾ inches (across the front)|
|Depth – 2 ½ inches (across the spine)|
On the front of each book we can see some more fantastic artwork by Katsuyoshi Nakatsuru. Across the three DVD books we essentially have four main images: Child Son Goku, Super Saiyan Son Goku, Super Saiyan 3 Son Goku, and Super Saiyan 4 Son Goku. There are also a couple small images of Super Saiyan Child Son Goku, but for the most part the designs on the books follow the main theme of Son Goku’s growth throughout the series. On either side of the interior of each book is a nice purple transparent plastic sheet which holds the discs in place. Under each disc is a big red star, a portion of the box’s title, and the disc number. The episode titles are also listed here, but they actually wrap around the discs, making it possible to see the episodes for that respective disc without having to actually remove it (such as with the Dragon Ball Dragon Box).
|DVD Book Dimensions:||Height – 10 ¼ inches|
|Width – 7 ½ inches (across the front)|
|Depth – 5/8 inches (across the spine)|
The labels on the discs are a collage of images taken from the episodes present on that disc, topped off with a quote from a particular episode’s title, giving you an idea of what actually happens on that disc.
The DVDs open with a little Dragon Box GT animation. The text “Shueisha, Fuji Television, and Toei Animation Presents” flies onto the screen. A Dragon Ball then smashes it apart and the full box title flies onto the screen. Two Dragon Balls then smash the title a couple times, condensing it down to just “DBGT”, creating the box set’s actual logo.
The main menu is an image of Super Saiyan 4 Son Goku, with asteroids and stuff flying around in space behind him. Meanwhile, a beautiful stereo version of the GT episode recap music is playing in the background, with some light “spaceship noises” on top of it. You are given the options of “All Play”, “Story Mode”, and “Episode Select”. “All Play” simply plays all the episodes in order, while “Story Mode” plays all episodes, but removes the openings, endings, and previews. If you choose “Episode Select” the Dragon Balls above Son Goku’s head will collect together, Son Goku will “instantaneously move” away, and you are taken to the episode menus. The episode menus are a static image of Shenlong in space, with a bunch of asteroids and Giru flying around in the background. The music is now gone and all you can hear is the humming of the spaceship and some beeping noises, presumably from the ships control panel.
The menu on the special disc is the exact same as noted above, except that it gives you the options of either “TV Special” or “Special Features” on the main menu. When you select “TV Special”, obviously it will play, and if you select “Special Features”, it will take you to a menu identical to the episode menus.
So what exactly are you getting for your money, and what sets this DVD box set apart from other releases? The answer is quite simple, and it’s that with this box set you are truly getting the purest presentation of Dragon Ball GT possible.
Presented here are the full episodes from start to finish, as they aired on TV over two decades ago (and counting). This includes the complete opening credits, ending credits and episode previews, which are not available outside of the Dragon Box release (although they are now available on the Japanese individual disc releases).
For these DVDs they actually pulled the original 16mm film reels out of cold storage, and used them as the primary source material. All previously released Dragon Ball content (even the original Fuji TV airings) were based off either the master tapes (copies of the 16mm film), or copies of the masters. Since the 16mm film is actually the original photography of the animation cels, what you are seeing when viewing these discs is essentially the original cel animation, almost as fresh as the day it was painted!
Since the source material is the original cel photography, the picture is already as pristine as it will ever be. However, as with any film, it is bound to suffer some damage. Pony Canyon took the time to carefully remove all damage from the film, presenting us with a perfectly clean picture, yet never compromising the integrity of the actual animation. On top of this, since they have gone back to the 16mm film, they can create an all-new frame alignment!
When making the original masters for a series, it is typical to copy the film while slightly zoomed-in. This reduces the risk of catching the edge of a misaligned cel (i.e. seeing the edge of the image). However, with time, money, and new digital technology on their side, Pony Canyon has created a new print that captures more image than the original masters. In some cases this actually meant re-aligning some of the frames, which not only allowed for a larger image surface, but also greatly reduced all former traces of jitter!
As with the video, they have also gone straight to the source material for the audio. Unfortunately, since the series was recorded in mono, it will always have that dated feel to it, but the audio presented here is of very good quality, all things considered. The audio never gives out or cracks during high notes in a song or loud screams, and the typical background noise (that horrible “shhhhhhh” sound) is virtually nonexistent. Also, the opening and ending themes, although remaining in their broadcast mono forms, have been greatly improved and sound very close to stereo quality.
The Dragon Book is 64 pages in length (how appropriate) and is closest to JIS B5 format (18.2 × 25.7 cm). The covers are soft, but are very sturdy, being printed on a thick, almost cardboard-type paper, which was then finished with a nice gloss. The actual pages in the book are in full color and are complete with a nice finish (similar to a gloss, giving thickness and durability to the paper). As with most Japanese books, the book is designed to be read from right to left.
This is very cool… in the back of every Dragon Book there are instructions on how to navigate the DVD menus and other various junk, which is basically just a waste of a page. But in the GT book, they also included a picture of a piece of key animation from the very last scene from episode 64 (after the huge credits, where Son Goku first turns around and looks at the camera). Written on the genga is “A5 END”. This was the last piece of key animation drawn for the entire series, and according to the note, it was drawn by none other than Katsuyoshi Nakatsuru himself!
Unfortunately, the amount of orders put in for this box was much higher than Toei Animation or Pony Canyon had anticipated, causing a delay in its release. The good news was that due to the overwhelming demand for this box, as well as the resulting delay in its release, fans were treated to a little bonus gift. So what did everyone get for being such loyal fans? Money! (err, well…Zenny, that is).
With the box set came a small envelope, the kind in Japan which would normally contain money (similar to an otoshidama New Years gift). Within the envelope was a whopping 100,000 Zenny (10 x 10,000 Zenny bills), as well as a nice little note. Of course, not only is it cool to have 100,000 Zenny in official Dragon Ball currency, but it also served a purpose. In the corner of each bill was a code which you could enter into a special website to take a survey for the upcoming Dragon Box The Movies! Not only this, but upon completing the survey you would receive a special Dragon Box GT wallpaper for your computer desktop!
Included amongst the free Zenny was a note of apology for the delay from Toei Animation:
Thank you very much for purchasing Dragon Ball GT. We would also like to thank you very much for your cooperation with the change of the sale date. Once more, we thank you for this.
Though it is small, we are giving you some Zenny money from the world of Dragon Ball to show our gratitude. We hope that you will happily enjoy it! (We’re sorry to say, that you cannot actually use it. Please understand this.)
Due to the delay, we will be carrying out an internet user questionnaire available from 15 June 2005 until 31 July 2005 in order to receive input on the planning of future products. You can access the questionnaire at www.jumpland.com (the questionnaire cannot be completed on a cellular phone). Though it is troublesome, we request your helpful cooperation.
Customers who cooperate will receive a Dragon Ball GT specially-made PC wallpaper as a sign of gratitude.
The Dragon Ball GT user questionnaire is provided by Shueisha, Fuji TV, Toei Animation, as well as a collaboration with the manufacturing company, Pony Canyon. Any personal information you have provided will be disposed of immediately following our review of the questionnaires.
15 June 2005
Companies: Shueisha / Fuji TV / Toei Animation
Manufacturing Company: Pony Canyon
The main present included with this box set is definitely one of the more interesting Dragon Ball products ever made. It is a full-scale model of the Dragon Radar, which serves as a universal TV/DVD remote controller! There really isn’t much to say about this product beyond the fact that it actually works and looks damn good, but here are some general points about the model.
Unfortunately, the button layout on the remote is more for show and makes using it very unpractical. You generally spend most of your time looking for the buttons, which are just scattered all over the face of the remote. However, this is really just a novelty item, and even if it were ergonomically perfect, you likely wouldn’t be using it to watch TV anyway.
Of course, it wouldn’t be fair to not list the downsides of this release, although luckily there isn’t much to complain about here.
Let me just state for the record that this release not having English subtitles, contrary to popular belief, is NOT a negative. This release was intended for the Japanese public, not Dragon Ball fans who live on the other side of the planet. Arguing these sets not having English subtitles as being a negative aspect is about as logical as arguing for Korean, Portuguese, or German subtitles. Not to say that I don’t sympathize with the people who want/need English subtitles, but you simply must realize that if you are so desperately in need of subtitles, then these DVDs weren’t really created for you to begin with.
Well, after a total of 508 episodes, three TV specials, and almost 11 long years, the Dragon Ball TV series has finally come to an end! But what’s this? There was more, you say? And it was filler, too?! Oh, but don’t worry, this isn’t shoddy filler like Dragon Ball GT, these are the movies, some of the best looking Dragon Ball material out there!