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New Cutey Honey: The Essential Anime Collection 
Written by: on October 28th, 2004

Theatrical Release dates: Japan 1994
Director: Yasuchika Nagaoka
Writers: Go Nagai
Created By: Go Nagai
Cast: Michiko Neya, Rica Matsumoto

DVD Released: May 25th, 2004
Approximate Running Time: 240 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 4.3 Full Frame
Rating: NR
Sound: Dolby Digital 5.1 and Stereo
DVD Release: A. D. Vision
Region Coding: Region 1 NTSC
Retail Price: $19.98

Cosplay city is overrun by crime when Cutey Honey who at the time is working for the Mayor as his assistant. Grandfather Danbei recognizes her when he sneaks a look at her panties. Honey regains her powers when she is called into action against a gang of biker mutants. The first four episodes primarily focus on Dormeck who sends others like the Jewel Princess who throws diamonds at her opponents, Saline a rock singer and Dark Maiden, Dormeck’s right hand. Honey takes on each new villain Dormeck sends her way who she fights in the fourth episode.

The last four episodes are stand alones that have a different villain that challenges Honey in each one. She is forced to save everyone in Cosplay city from a mad bomber who has been possessed by her old nemesis Panther Zora. Then is the next episode Panther Zora returns once again this time she possesses Yasha and she brings to life an army of zombie lady ninjas and samurai warriors. Next up for Honey is a woman named Scorpion who forms the thug hunters and she has them round up all the criminals in town so that she watches them die in death matches. In the final episode Honey faces off against Gold Digger who has been using a scientist’s teleporter to steal gold.

Go Nagai has been crafting dark and sexually charged Manga for nearly thirty five years. His works are known for pushing the boundaries of the horror genre by mixing taboo subjects often carnal in nature with graphic bloodshed. The Devil Lady was the series that introduced me too the Manga of Go Nagai and it didn’t take long before he had me hooked leaving wanting more of his Manga. In 1973 Go Nagai first introduced the Cutey Honey character via a television series that ran for twenty five episodes. Twenty years later he would be given the chance to revisit one of his most famous creations with the New Cutey Honey and this time he would be able to things he wasn’t allowed to then.

Through out the new incarnation of Cutey Honey she faces several villains that are more difficult to dispose of then the last one. Panther Zora, Honey’s main foe in the original Cutey Honey series makes a few appearances in this updated version that that takes the violence to another level and offers more compromising shots of Honey then in the tamer original Honey series. This series offers plenty of eye candy and Honey transforms into a wide variety of personalities through out the series. The fights scenes are well executed and the villains are always interesting as they think of new ways to dispose of Honey.

The first four episodes in which Honey spares off against Dormeck and his henchmen follow a theme and continuous storyline that is lacking in the final four episodes that feel at times like Honey vs. the villain of the week. The later episodes are darker in tone in direct contrast to the earlier episodes that are lighter in mood. These later episodes do offer more background into Honey’s past as they expand on her and Chokkei’s relationship.

As the series goes on the formula does start to wear thin as Honey before she fights each week’s heavy rambles off a speech before she kicks their ass. The characters are the series greatest strength. An amusing part of the series is how each character’s preoccupation with Honey. Chokkei’s tries to show that she is just as sexy as honey while her father lusts after Honey like a dirty old man. Chokkei is the only character who appears to care about Honey without being obsessively infatuated with her Honey Flash. The new Cutey Honey is all about having fun and this series does this in spades.

The DVD:

ADV films DVD presents new Cutey Honey in its original 4:3 aspect ratio. For an animation series made nearly a decade ago Cutey Honey color palate is vivid through out a Honey goes through her various costume changes.

This DVD comes with two audio options the original Japanese audio presented in a Dolby Digital Stereo and for a stereo track it more then gets the job done. The other audio track is an, English dubbed Dolby Digital 5.1 track that makes goods use of the surrounds as well as the front channels. Overall the English Dubbed 5.1 track packs more of a punch then the Japanese Stereo track. English subtitles have been included that are easy to read and follow.

Extras include two brief segments the press conference and costume play which are taken from the same event. Other extras include a Recording Session for the series man theme and a Production Portfolio that includes various sketches. Rounding out the extras are trailers for the new Cutey Honey and an animated segment where various characters leave phone messages.

ADV offers yet another series at a great price and their Cutey Honey release also comes with some cool extras. Due to its violent tone and mature situations the new Honey Cutey is a wonderful animation series that should only be watched by adults. If you like Cyborg’s that kick a lot of ass and dialog laced with sexual innuendos then I recommend you check out the new Cutey Honey.

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