SAMURAI X: BETRAYAL (OAV 3-4) (1999)
DVD reviewed by Dennis A. Amith
RATING: 18 and over
DURATION: 60 minutes
TYPE OF ANIME:  Samurai, Violence

 
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Anime Synopsis:

After the Great Fire in Edo, Kenshin and Tomoe are sent into exile on a small farm. They experience peace and quiet for the first time in their turbulent lives. The rebellion, wounded after the events in Edo, is slowly rebuilding, far away from Kenshin and Tomoe. Their only link to the outside world is Iizuka, who brings them dire news from the city.


DVD EXTRAS:

Region 1 encoding (US and Canada only)
 Color, Animated, HiFi Sound
Historical Background Notes
Character Notes
Full-screen format

KNOWN DVD SECRET(S): None that I know of


DVD REVIEW:

Forget everything you saw from the tv series "Rurouni Kenshin".  This OAV (Original Animated Version/Direct to video) series is based on Japanese feudal history but using Kenshin to make a fictional story.  For those who are familiar with the Tokugawa period and the life of the Samurai, it's not a beautiful time.  In fact when you watch this anime you will immediately notice how violent this anime is compared to it's light-hearted, humorous counterpart (tv series).  

Needless to say, if you don't like to watch violent samurai battles, you may want to pass on the OAV series.

As for me, I have studied Japanese history and I'm always intrigued by it.  "Samurai X: Betrayal" is the last two OAV's (total 4) which features the history of Kenshin and how he became a master of the sword.  Also, the introduction of many key characters who Kenshin trusts which leads to betrayal.  You find out how Kenshin gets the "cross" scar.

The series will catch your attention but will make you think about how horrible and barbaric feudal Japan can be during war.  The anime is just simply beautiful and fluid.

As for the DVD, like most anime on DVD...hardly any special features.  It does come with an introduction to the characters and this time information on the storyline and several trailers but that's just it.  At least it has this much, most anime DVD's have zilch.  Btw, there is a dubbed English dialogue but I don't watch anime dubbed.  Only Japanese with English subs.

The "Rurouni Kenshin" series was meant for people to watch the TV series first and think of the OAV as a series for adults. If you start out with the OAV series and then watch the TV series, you may feel disappointed.  Remember, the TV series can't exactly show all that violence to the children.  Otherwise an awesome anime OAV series.

THE OAV 3-4: A 
THE DVD EXTRAS: C
THE DVD OVERALL: B+

Check out other cool DVD reviews on this movie by clicking here: 1, 2