FUNimation Entertainment has announced the Blu-ray release of Dragon Ball Z: Season 7 Uncut, which features episodes 195-219 of the classic anime series, presented in remastered high definition. The 4-disc Season 7 set streets on September 16th.
Official Synopsis: Seven years of peace have passed since the defeat of the monstrous Cell, and the Z-Fighters have enjoyed a return to normal life. Goku has eagerly continued his training in Other World, Krillin has gotten married, and Gohan has renewed his scholarly pursuits while attempting to navigate the pitfalls of high school. Two fresh new Saiyan faces have also appeared on the scene - Goku's son Goten, and Vegeta's son Trunks.
Now, the time has come for the Z-Fighters to reunite, as the new World Martial Arts Tournament is set to begin. The greatest warriors on Earth have come together for their chance to capture the title of the reigning champion, Mr. Satan - but behind the scenes, sinister forces are at work. An evil eye watches the competitors' every move, waiting for the opportune moment to strike. The action grows fierce on the tournament floor, but for the Z-Fighters, the real fight is only just beginning
Season 7 has undergone a frame-by-frame restoration to remove blemishes, tape marks and foreign bodies from the film. All three audio tracks have been re-mastered in the interest of noise reduction and superior sound quality, and the colors are bolder and more vibrant. Lastly, a precise shot-by-shot reframing of the entire series was done to create "a modern HD widescreen presentation."
The Blu-ray release of Season 7 includes episodes 195-219 presented in 1080p at a 16:9 aspect ratio. The set features Japanese audio and two English tracks: the U.S. English-language broadcast dub and a mix with English dialogue and Japanese music. Bonus content:
Inside Dragon Ball Z: Interview with Justin Cook
Inside Dragon Ball Z: Interview with Nathanael Harrison
Haters gonna hate. These sets are actually very good. You can say what you like about 'em but they're miles better than the Orange Bricks and Dragon Boxes. Sure, I'd prefer 4:3 along with everyone else. But at least these were cropped moderately carefully, plus they look amazing.
You might as well support these releases, they're gonna be the last. Yes the cropping sucks, but it's done well. Seriously. Don't let that stop you.
PS. I'm not saying they're the best thing ever, as I've already said I would also prefer 4:3. But this is how it is, so please don't post negative/hurtful comments. Save it for FUNimation.
@THGhost: yeah, no.
1) They're not better than the Dragon Boxes
2) How they look is a matter of personal opinion, personally I feel they look like something made in Flash or Photoshop.
3) They're not going to be the last releases. Toei will most likely do their own restoration at some point.
4) Fans don't have to support an inferior product for the sake of supporting Dragon Ball. Funimation make billions of dollars off of Dragon Ball, they're not going to lose sleep/stop putting out Dragon Ball products if no one buys these.
1. Yes there better than the Dragon Boxes. The Dragon Boxes had washed out colours and just looked plain shoddy compared to the HD Blu-ray transfers.
2. There's personal opinion and then there's just being wrong. This is still the original animation in 1080p. If you want to complain about new animation, watch Kai.
3. They're the last FUNimation releases, if Toei would do one they'd have done it by now.
4. These sets are no inferior, they're superior to both the Dragon Boxes and the Orange Bricks. If you'd actually tried them then you'd know that.
Finally someone with some sense and who isn't narrow-minded.
Still pissed about the cropping, but I may finally bite and pick up this set. Need to replace my orange bricks and not willing to get a set without the faulconer soundtrack- this seems like the best option since it doesn't look like we will get an uncropped set anytime soon.
I think there the best Z has EVER looked. Cropping, I don't care about, & it's better then the Orange Bricks cropping.
And these 'purists' will examine a scene for 20minutes just looking for flaws. (Which is ridiculous).
Obviously these are better than the Orange Bricks but that isn't much of compliment. AND NO WAY are these better than the Dragon Box. The Dragon Box may have aged colour, but atleast it isn't overblown like the colour on these sets! The Dragon Box also has natural grain, whereas these sets commit the unforgivable sin of removing far too much. Season 5 looks like it has less grain removal than the first four sets, but that still leaves you with less grain for the earlier part of the series. OH. AND the Dragon Boxes are in 4:3. If this kind of cropping were to be performed on a classic film it wouldn't be tolerated, but yet here we are. I would only ever recommend these sets to someone who missed out on the Dragonbox. I also shudder to realize these sets are what I'll have to replace my Dragonboxes with if anything should ever happen to them. And no I am not a so called "purist" analyzing the film for 20 minutes looking for flaws. The most obvious problems are what irritate me. The classic look of this animation is absolutely charming and should be preserved, not cheaply updated to have the appearance of "a modern HD widescreen presentation."
People use those excuses all the time, the problem is that grain looks ugly on animation. Grain is film, and most animation since the mid-80s is done digitally, not on film. And DBZ is not a classic film like Citizen Kane - as I've seen others compare the cropping situation to. The fact still remains that you don't miss anything due to the cropping.
And as for the colours, the colours on the Blu-rays look fantastic. You can't argue with the results. They're better than any other version of DBZ.
The Dragon Boxes are pretty much insignificant right now since you can't even get them all anymore, not to mention the dreadful colours and low quality picture/sound quality. But don't get me wrong, I'd still buy them if I could. Of course I would.
Other than that, I agree. It should be 4:3, but as Matt110189 said, the Blu-rays are the best option right now. Are they not as good as a true restoration? No. Are they "inferior"? Certainly not.
If it helps, try to think of the Blu-rays as the HD Orange Bricks. The "Blu Bricks", if you will :P people seem less angry about those for some reason, even though they're worse.
If Toei ever do decide to do their own restoration then I'll buy it in a heartbeat. But as it stands right now, FUNimation owns the retail rights for DBZ, and they're a small company - despite what Zechs Merquise said about them making billions of dollars - they could not afford to continue with the Level sets. We should be glad that they found a more affordable way to restore the series at all and they should be commended for that. It certainly isn't a cheap process, no restoration is.
They aren't excuses. Labelling them as such is just a pathetic attempt to discredit a valid argument. Grain does not look ugly on animation at all. It's beautiful. It adds the illusion of texture and depth that Flash Animation cannot. Also, grain in general is an acquired taste and once you have it, the grain adds more to the experience than JUST the illusion of texture and depth. It is hard to put into words the affection I feel for grain. It probably has something to do with respect for the past, not just simple nostalgia. The idea that even back then, without contemporary technology, artists were able to create something beautiful that has withstood the test of time. Their creations still matter and it makes you feel closer to those people even after all of this time. Furthermore, just because animation is done differently now does not make it okay to alter the look of older animation. That's like saying we should scrub Citizen Kane so it will look more like Avatar. I realize that isn't what you were saying but if you follow that line of thought through to conclusion that is where it leads. In terms of the cropping, DBZ is obviously not framed as precisely as something like Citizen Kane, but the cropping does interfere with the original framing. I am not talking about heads getting chopped off either, especially considering the Blu-rays have mostly dealt with that problem. There are plenty of compositions in Z that I love that are altered for the worse by the cropping. Some shots simply do not look as dynamic or as involving in 16:9 as they do in 4:3. And the colours are over saturated, not as badly as the Orange Bricks maybe, but the results are still disrespectful. In your opinion the colours might be beautiful and that's fine, but you can't tell me they are the intended colours and you can't tell me it is acceptable to alter them as such. The Level Sets had far more accurate colours even if they were a little too dark. Interesting comment, about people's anger. I am sure more anger is only being fueled at these sets because they are new and destroyed people's hopes for having a quality HD DBZ release. The Orange Bricks are old news so it makes sense that these sets are getting more attention even if they are a slight upgrade. I am not mad at you personally, your opinion is your opinion, but I do not believe it is okay to alter the original look of the film, and sets like these just create a marketplace where it is acceptable to do so. I care too much about Z to see it taken in this direction. The past should be respected, and the different aesthetics that go along with it. The past gave us all something pretty damn wonderful to enjoy, didn't it? I am thankful for that.
"Grain is film, and most animation since the mid-80s is done digitally"
No, digital techniques were very few and between in the '80s, aside from movies or OAVs that actually had big budgets. Most TV series used traditional cel animation for the longest time and were shot on film till about the mid to late '90s, when technology had advanced enough and become more practical to use on a regular basis. But even then, the quality of digital animation for TV shows varied on budgets and the skill levels of the animators.
DBZ, however, had nothing digital about it. It was hand-drawn and shot on 16mm, hence the grain and dated look. But by your argument, you're saying that it was created digitally in some way, shape, or form, and that it should be preserved as such? Preposterous.
"Artistic integrity" is such a simple concept: someone makes art (a picture, movie, song, etc.), and throughout the years, people will try to maintain and preserve it the way it was originally intended.
How does anything FUNi has done adhere to this? DNR a grainy picture? Nope. Over-saturate the colors to be brighter than the original palette? Nope. Crop and zoom a square into a rectangle? Nope.
I guess the audio is still sort of intact, (not a fan of their matrixed faux-5.1 dub tracks, either, but at least they stayed true to the native Japanese ones).
It's a bad representation of fandom to support poorly-made products like this. It shows you don't care as much as you think because you're willing to settle for mediocrity over "the best," and you're only giving the greedy corporate pigs more leeway/opportunity to possibly create more mistakes down the line because your money says so. Don't be a McAnime fan and buy this crap. Just be patient and weather the storm.
And I guarantee this isn't the last we'll see of DBZ on BD. FUNi is terribly self-conscious about their public image, so I'm sure they'll eventually come out with something to appease to the non-McAnime fans who actually care for quality. They'd be stupid not to milk this cash-cow, otherwise.