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ADV Films presents
Generator Gawl #3: Secrets And Lies (1998)

"I think everyone has something they can't tell anyone else."
- Natsume (Koname Yoshida)

Review By: Jeff Ulmer   
Published: April 10, 2001

Stars: Nobutoshi Hayashi, Shinchiro Miki, Tsutomo Kashiwakura, Satsuki Yukino, Koname Yoshida/Vic Mignogna, Jay Hickman, Matt Kelly, Rozie Curtis
Other Stars: Yuriko Yamaguchi, Hideyuki Hori, Masami Toyoshima/Kaytha Coker, Jason Douglas, Rachel Buchman
Director: Seiji Mizushima

Manufacturer: IFPI
MPAA Rating: Not Rated for (12+ for mild animated nudity, violence)
Run Time: 01h:14m:23s
Release Date: March 27, 2001
UPC: 702727014123
Genre: anime

Image Transfer
Audio Transfer
B+ B+B+A- C-

DVD Review

With disc three in the series we are closing in on the last chapter, which concludes in the next set. Although not reviewed on this site, I viewed disc two independently to see how the series was developing, and it certainly gets more interesting as things move on. Where the second disc had a lot more of the hyper-animated sequences between Gawl and Masumi and though their relationship is still pretty heated, there are only minor instances where the characters get into the heavy exasperation mode - we only hear "baka" a couple of times (you should know what this means by the end of this series unless you aren't paying attention!). Episodes Secrets & Lies, Future Tense and Storms are included, and if you haven't seen the last disc, you may want to skip the following synopsis.

We start out at a favorite location for anime, in a bath house, where the three boys get some time to relax after all the generating Gawl (Nobutoshi Hayashi) had been up to recently. Here, the boys confer about whether Masami (Satsuki Yukino) is buying the story that has developed after her witnessing Gawl in true form. Meanwhile, on the other side of the building still confused about all she has seen, Masami vents her frustration about Gawl's attitude to Natsume (Koname Yoshida). As the five make their way home afterwards, another flash appears in the sky, and while Koji (Shinchiro Miki) tries to deflect Masumi's curiosity, Gawl sneaks off to do battle with another Generator yet again. Feigning that she has left her purse behind, Masumi splits from the others and again witnesses Gawl in action in his Generated form. As he escapes and transforms back to normal, she finds him lying on the sidewalk, with a gash on his face that she links to the monster she had just seen. Her suspicions aroused, she tries to confront Gawl the following morning, and the two get into a heated argument, especialy now that Gawl's wound has miraculously healed. When he doesn't return home that night, Natsume seeks Gawl out, trying to smooth over the situation, knowing that everyone has something they want to hide.

With only three episodes per disc, you would think that not much happens, when in fact there is a lot going on through the course of this installment. We learn a lot more about the boys' mission, and get a fair deal of background information on the whole generating process, and what the boys are trying to accomplish, through a series of flashbacks that make up most of the second episode. The personal relationships continue to develop, handled in a fairly humorous manner and, by the end of disc three, new information has been given to us that will change the way we look at everything going on. Of course there are numerous encounters with Generators throughout the episodes, which contrast with the exposition-like segments. There is not much filler here. Although I found some of the back story to be a bit common in its theme, Generator Gawl uses it to good effect, with a satisfying explanation up to this point. The final disc should be a good one if this is any indication.

Rating for Style: B+
Rating for Substance: B+


Image Transfer

Aspect Ratio1.33:1 - Full Frame
Original Aspect Ratioyes

Image Transfer Review: While colors and black levels appear normal throughout, grain does tend to mar the image especially in dark scenes with a lot of blue. Some shimmer is present here and there, but i's not overly intrusive. Not quite up to par with some of ADV's other series, but I believe this is primarily a source issue.

Image Transfer Grade: B+


Audio Transfer

 LanguageRemote Access
DS 2.0Japanese, Englishyes

Audio Transfer Review: Both the Japanese and English tracks are again presented in stereo, and both are free of any noticible abnormalities. Distortion is nonexistent. Primarily center focused with the exception of the action sequences, which feature more directionality. There are a couple of perspectives where off screen dialog is present. Good sounding, but you'll want to avoid the completely rewritten English dub.

Audio Transfer Grade: A-


Disc Extras

Static menu with music
Scene Access with 15 cues and remote access
Subtitles/Captions in English with remote access
1 Original Trailer(s)
7 Other Trailer(s) featuring Farscape, Shadow Raiders, Gasaraki, Neon Genesis Evangelion, Orphen, Sin: the Movie, ADV preview mix.
Packaging: other
1 Disc
1-Sided disc(s)
Layers: single

Extra Extras:
  1. Textless opening and closing credits
  2. Character intros
Extras Review: Textless opening and end credits, and the show's trailer are included again. Like previous discs, a small collection of single-screen diagrams showing more Generators and characters make up the limited extras.

Cover artwork matches the previous discs in style, though is not overly enticing. Can ADV deliver the fourth disc with a matching spine to complete the series? The case on my copy has warped front and back panels, and has a tendency to pop the disc out when opening the case. Be prepared.

Front end trailers include Farscape, Shadow Raiders, Gasaraki, Neon Genesis Evangelion, Orphen, Sin: the Movie and the ADV preview mix.

Extras Grade: C-


Final Comments

With only four discs in the series. Generator Gawl is a reasonable value for a complete series. It doesn't rate as high as some others, due both to the episode count and lack of substantial extras. The action is good, the story is interesting and most of the character interactions are pretty funny, but I am not as keen on some of the cast as I would like to be. It's good, but not essential. That said, I am looking forward to the concluding disc. Baka.


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