Blu-Ray Review: Dragon Ball Super – Part 4

Conclusions, Fun and Old Friends Reunited; it’s all here in this fourth entry into the Dragon Ball Super franchise – so let’s take a closer look at Dragon Ball Super – Part 4 on Blu-Ray via Manga Entertainment UK.

Synopsis:

The universe versus universe tournament finally has it winner with it, a chance to wish on the Super Dragon Balls! But are they really going to wish something like that?! Then, after an unexpected visit to a bizarre planet, a sudden SOS from the future arrives in the form of Future Trunks! What horror plagues his timeline, and can the Z Fighters face a foe that looks exactly like Goku?

Our View:

Dragon Ball Super returns to form in this fourth instalment of the popular anime franchise with its fresh approach to new content, some familiar faces and a brand new story arc that feels reminiscence of Dragon Ball Z.

Featuring thirteen episodes, and presented across two discs, Dragon Ball Super – Part 4 resumes where the third instalment left off with Hit and Goku battling it out as a result of a wager between The God of Destructions of Universe 6 and Universe 7. As one would expect the battle is intense but soon enough a winner is decided; albeit a rather unexpected one.

No spoilers of course, as that would ruin the comical experience, but everyone ends up being winner. The closure of the tournament spawns the arrival of Zeno-Sama; the almighty being who controls all universes, and impressed by this tournament declares that a new tournament will be fought; one which will feature all of the universes; but alas this tournament won’t take place anytime soon.

With the tournament over the next few episodes are ‘filler styled’ to tide us over to the next major story arc; but unlike traditional filler these episodes are actually entertaining. For starters one episode focuses between Goku and Monaka, in which Beerus has to pretend to be Monaka in order to prove how strong he is, while another sees an episode that focuses on Pan after Goku is left taking care of her as a result of his power (KI) becoming unbalanced from the tournament. Regardless of the content these particular episodes are different to the norm; and are mostly silly but still good fun to watch.

These ‘filler styled’ episodes fall within the ‘Copy Vegeta’ arc; an arc which sees Goku fight against a duplicate of Vegeta created by superhuman water. This particular story line begins when Goten and Trunks stowaway on Monaka’s delivery ship and during a delivery find themselves captured by the space pirates who are looking for the superhuman water. Worried about her son’s disappearance Bulma sends Vegeta and Jaco to find him (and Goten) but upon arriving on the planet Vegeta’s personality and power is copied by the superhuman water and as such Goku is summoned to fight ‘Copy Vegeta’ so that they have a chance of saving Vegeta from disappearing – which is an after effect of having power absorbed by the water.

The unique aspect about this selection of episodes is that instead of using Christopher Sabat (who is of course the regular English Dub voice actor for Vegeta) FUNimation opted to use the original Ocean/Pioneer voice actor for Vegeta; Brain Dummond. This offers Dragon Ball fans a ‘real sense’ of nostalgia and makes these episodes more memorable than you usually were thought possible. Additionally despite being a rather ‘serious toned’ selection of episodes, with Vegeta’s body magically disappearing each second, we have a bit of light hearted comedy with Super Saiyan Gotenks (which we do not see often) and ‘BADMAN’ Vegeta being told to use a pacifier in an attempt to delay his disappearence.

Of course the highlight of this release is the introduction of the Goku Black arc, an arc which sees Future Trunks return to the current timeline in order to request the help of Vegeta and Goku. It’s a relatively long-winded-arc, with characters travelling between different time-zones and universes in order to find out the truth behind Goku Black, but compared to previous story arcs it is easily one of the most unique and delivers an entertaining experience. This arc also brings Dragon Ball Super up to the form of Dragon Ball Z, with intensity and the threat of extinction lurking around every corner – albeit without the bloody violence seen in Dragon Ball Z.

Dragon Ball Super – Part 4 offers a nice variety of episodes, whether it be the conclusion of a previously started arc, a few comical filler styled episodes, or a more serious toned storyline with familiar faces – but more importantly it has everything to cater fans of the Dragon Ball franchise.

Extras:

Just like with the previous releases of Dragon Ball Super, Manga Entertainment UK have opted to use the disc masters authored by FUNimation and as a result we receive access to a wide-variety of supplementary content; including an America-created piece of content with English Dub voice actor Sean Schemmel; who is of course the FUNimation English Dub voice actor for Goku.

In this case we receive textless opening and closing songs, with the audio track defining whether or not the English or Japanese version of the song is played, a selection of trailers for other FUNimation licensed shows and finally a featurette with the English Dub voice actor of Goku; Sean Schemmel

Those interested in the English Dub for Dragon Ball Super will no doubt enjoy this interview with Sean Schemmel, as not only does it explore his voice acting work of Goku – who he has been voicing for many years now in both anime and games – but it also explores his voice actor work with Goku Black; a character who made his inital ‘english’ debut in Dragon Ball Xenoverse 2. Even those uninterested in the English Dub may want to check out this piece of content as it can be insightful.

Specs:

Media:  BD 50, BD 25
Region: B
Running Time: 3:28:15 (Disc 1), 1:32:39 (Disc 2)
Video: MPEG-4 AVC
Audio: Dolby TrueHD 5.1 (English) & Dolby TrueHD 2.0 (Japanese)
Subtitles: English (White)
Resolution: 1920×1080 (1080p)
Aspect Ratio: 16:9
Frame Rate: 23.976 fps

Overall:

Dragon Ball Super – part 4 retains the momentum brought forward from the previous part and expands with it a brand new story arc and some fresh content that provides familiar faces and nostalgic voices. Of course those watching in Japanese (with English Subtitles) will lose out on the nostalgia experience with Brain Dummoned but that aside the episodic content is both fun and exciting from start to finish.

Initially this part begins with the conclusion of the Universe 6 arc, with the spotlight shining mostly on Monaka, which then conveniently runs into the Copy-Vegeta arc which puts the spotlight on Trunks and Goten in addition to Monoka, Goku and Vegeta. This release begins to whittle down with the beginning of a new story arc and the arrival of a new enemy threat; Goku Black. Plenty of comical antics, some nostalgia, and intense action is what its store for Dragon Ball Super fans and while the animation quality still remains ‘acceptable’ it is fun and enjoyable to watch throughout.

In terms of this Blu-Ray release by Manga Entertainment UK then things remain consistent to previous releases as well as a constant quality in presentation (both audio and subtitles). Some minor complaints can be had with the ‘large differences’ between English and Japanese narrative (one example is during Episode 44 in which Trunks says “His Leg is funny” which doesn’t occur in the Japanese dub); but things like this can happen from time-to-time as part of localisation. The inclusion of bonus features is also well varied; especially with the inclusion of some ‘western’ created content in addition to the traditional selection of materials.

Overall Dragon Ball Super – Part 4 is easily one of the more ‘well balanced’ releases that offers both comedy and fist fights with little room for mindless banter and this Blu-Ray release also falls within that catergory. It’s everything you’ve come to expect from a UK Blu-Ray release of Drgaon Ball Super; and in some cases so much more.

Score: review-stars-5

Dragon Ball Super – Part 4 will be available on Blu-Ray and DVD from the 6th August 2018.

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About Scott Emsen
Scott is the Founder and Executive Editor of AnimeBlurayUK but in the past he has worked at ZOMGPlay, Rice Digital and Funstock and was once a Community Moderator for the Nokia N-Gage forums. Based in the UK, he loves anything related to Games & Anime and in In his spare time you'll mostly find him playing on one of his many gaming consoles; namely the PS Vita, PS4 or Xbox One.

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