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Xenosaga: The Animation — The Complete Collection (DVD Review)

18 Dec, 2008 By: Chris Tribbey

Street 12/23/08
$49.98 three-DVD set

Like so many other anime based on video games, the 2005 series “Xenosaga” looks great, sounds great, and makes no sense whatsoever. That should be OK if all you’re looking for is action, explosions and attractive characters.

The story of “Xenosaga” goes something like this: Mankind abandoned Earth 4,000 years ago, and the remnants are wandering space as homeless bums … except they’re armed to the teeth and wear really sweet threads. Under constant attack from a creepy, extra-dimensional alien race, mankind’s only real defense is a gorgeous android with a hand cannon and a garter belt. There’s something about an artifact mankind is protecting from the aliens, as well as some subplots about space terrorists, but new characters are thinly introduced, and plot morsels are thrown at the viewer too quickly before another large-scale mecha battle is underway.

“Xenosaga” wants to emulate the grand space-faring scope of “Robotech,” and the story has hints of Titan A.E., but in aiming for epic it ends up being merely entertaining. Of course, fans of the trilogy of video games on which the series is based will want to own this DVD.

Like most anime on DVD, the original Japanese-language track with English subtitles is a much more enjoyable experience than the English dub. Typical of a complete collection of 12 episodes squeezed onto two discs, special features here are limited to clean opening and closing animation, DVD credits and some previews.

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