Blu-Ray Review: Ground Control To Psychoelectric Girl – The Complete Series

Those looking for the weird and wonderful in anime will most likely enjoy MVM Entertainment’s release of Ground Control to Psychoelectric Girl, but what did we think of the series and it’s Blu-Ray release? Let’s take a look and find out.

Synopsis:

Makoto Niwa just moved to the city to live with his aunt Meme after his parents were reassigned to work overseas. He is perfectly fine with that, saying it will give him the chance to live the dream life of an adolescent boy. He keeps track of the things he does by assigning “points” to them – positive or negative – and adds them up on a regular basis to grade his adolescent life. And then he discovers Meme has a secret daughter (and self-proclaimed alien) named Erio.

He finds her rolling around by the front door of Meme’s house wrapped up in a futon. It is then he realizes that his dream adolescent life will not come true, and begins a life of experiences that are out of this world.

Our View:

Animated by Shaft Production, the animation studio best known for animating the Monogatari franchise, and based upon the light novel of the same name, Ground Control to Psychoelectric Girl, is a mysterious slice-of-life styled coming-of-age story that seemingly goes nowhere despite offering an interesting story to work with. Fans of shaft animation’s other productions will no doubt enjoy the visual spectacular that is on offer, but other than that the series is a pretty shallow experience that seemingly doesn’t go anywhere.

The story of Ground Control to Psychoelectric Girl follows high-school student Makoto Niwa during his new life in town as he is forced to move  in with his aunt, Meme Towa, after his parents travel overseas. Upon moving in with his aunt he soon discovers that a girl also residing there, later to be revealed as Meme Towa’s daughter known as Erio Towa, is anything but normal as she openly declares that she is Alien.

To Makoto, who disbelieves in Aliens, Espers or Supernatural elements and relies upon his own adolescent scoring system for a successful high-school life, struggles to come to terms with Erio’s personality, but upon settling in within the household, and his new school life, he opts to help Erio break out of her mould. During the course of a handful of episodes Makoto uses his own personalities and scoring systems to help Erio break out of the alien persona she has created for herself and as such she begins to act more like a shy girl while attempting to do daily activities.

Alongside the story line of Makoto helping Erio break out of her mould Makoto develops friendships with other ‘unique people’ at school; including Ryuko Mifune, who seemingly has feelings for Makoto, and Maekawa, a tall girl that appeares dressed in different outfits in each scene. A story that initially focused on Erio soon splits three ways, with even one episode each focused entirely on these two female companions. Despite this variety, and further character development for those involved, the series seemingly goes nowhere an insteads ends abruptly with Makoto learning that unexplained elements do exist in the world.

Extras:

As with Hanasaku Iroha MVM Entertainment have opted to use the same disc masters authored by NIS America in North America, albeit with one small modification.

Although trailers are listed on the main menu on disc 2 they have actually been removed, as selecting the trailers will simply result in the screen going blank momentarily before being returned to the disc menu.It’s not uncommon for trailers to be removed, but it is uncommon to be removed in this fashion as they still appear on the disc menu.

As the trailers for other anime releases has been removed from these discs it does mean that this already barebones release has become even barer with only promotional videos and text less songs related to the series being included. It’s not much, but at least it is better than nothing.

Specs:

Media:  BD 50, BD 25
Region: B
Running Time: 3:31:32 (Disc 1), 1:49:20 (Disc 2)
Video: MPEG-4 AVC
Audio: LPCM 2.0 (Japanese)
Subtitles: English (White)
Resolution: 1920×1080 (1080p)
Aspect Ratio: 16:9
Frame Rate: 23.976 fps

Overall:

Animated by Shaft Productions Ground Control to Psychoeletic Girl is the animated series of the light novel of the same name and follows high-schooler Makoto Niwa as he starts his new life with his Aunt, Meme, and daughter Erio. The series initially begins with a mysterious vibe whereby Erio proclaims she is an alien sent from earth after she disappeared for a year. The relationship between Erio and Makato is a complicated one, but as the series progresses Makato is able to remove Erio from her deluded (chunibyo) shell and have her re-enter the society.

Alot of elements that build up to this fact still remain relatively unclear, and the bigger talking points which led to Erio’s sudden isolation remain relatively unexplained. Instead of focusing on this potential hot topics were learn more about Erio’s interests, such as star gazeing, as well as introduced to various other characters; each with their own problems. Sadly these are not as interested as Erio’s personality, but we do see a potential relationship develop between Makato and odd-ball classmate Ryuko; but as with most storyline elements within this series it seemingly goes nowhere.

From a story perspective then Ground Contol to Psychoeletic Girl is a bit of disappointment, as what started as interesting and enlighting soon drones on to other topics and inconsistencies. Realistically only the half of the series is any good, and the remainder acts like filler to its ending. Even a surprise revelation, and character introduction, does little to reignite my interest for the potential story being told. From a Blu-Ray perspective then the visual and audio qualities really shrine on this format, as fans of the Monogatari franchise will no doubt agree, and the subtitles, despite white, are clearly readable throughout.

The only downside of this release, other than its content, is the bizarre removable of promotional trailers. The reason for the removal is logical, as they are not needed, but the fact the sub-menu is still presented makes the product feel incomplete or defective, when it is not. Overall if you liked what the Monotgari franchise has to offer, with its impressive visuals and unusual storylines, then you’ll probably enjoy Ground Control to Psychoelectric Girl has to offer; but it’s not a series that I enjoyed or could see myself watching again anytime soon.

Score: review-stars-2

Ground Control to Psychoelectric Girl – The Complete Series is now available on Blu-Ray in the UK via MVM Entertainment.

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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