Blu-ray of the Month: Spice and Wolf, Season One

With the release of Season Two out this very same month, Funimation has also decided to package The Complete First Season of Spice and Wolf on Blu-ray and this is – no doubt about it – the best way to watch a series that not only contains gorgeous animation but also tells a very endearing and fantastical tale that makes it feel like a traditional fable.

The story revolves around a young traveling merchant named Craft Lawrence who encounters a harvest goddess named Holo who appears like a cute girl with a furry tail and wolf ears but is actually a wolf deity. Sensing that the human world has no need for a harvest goddess, she makes a deal with Lawrence to travel with her so she could go back to her home safely.

The pair goes on an amazing journey filled with danger and excitement as both Lawrence and Holo come to form an interesting bond. They not only come to learn about the world but also about themselves as Lawrence and Holo’s relationship takes a meaningful turn as they navigate through a world filled with greedy merchant guilds and a threat that wishes to harness Holo’s power.

As I mentioned, the series contains some stunning animation and you had better believe that it looks even better on Blu-ray … the way this series was meant to be seen and heard. Even the voice acting is topnotch in this series.

We Highly Recommend you pick up this series on Blu-ray if you missed it the first time around and with the Season Two upon us (we will bring you our review soon) you will certainly want to check it out. In the meantime, you can check out our review of the DVD version of Spice and Wolf, The Complete First Season.

Spice and Wolf, The Complete First Season DVD Review

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Blu-ray of the Month: Samurai Champloo, The Complete Series

Samurai Champloo is one of those series that is hard to forget even if you’ve seen just about every samurai-themed anime (or even film, for that matter) out there. The reason this series is such a blast to watch and so easy to love is that its characters, action and story are fused with a hip-hop modern feel despite its era.

Blu-ray is the perfect format for this series since the series is visual striking to the point that it caught the eye of filmmaker Quentin Tarantino for an anime sequence he used in “Kill Bill, Vol. 1.”

FUNimation Entertainment does the series proud with this Blu-ray release and it should be in your collection if you’re familiar with the series. For those who aren’t, we highly recommend you pick this one up immediately.

Blu-ray of the Month: Ponyo

From Disney’s Studio Ghibli and from the mind of Academy Award winning Japanese animation director Hayao Miyazaki comes this very charming little story that’s inspired by the “Little Mermaid” by Hans Christian Andersen.

While not as impressive or as breathtaking as “Spirited Away,” Ponyo is Miyazaki at his best. We rank this movie up there with some of our favorite like “Kiki’s Delivery Service” or “Howl’s Moving Castle.”

This is animation so good that you won’t care about the celebrity voices but rather enjoy the story of a little boy and a little goldfish that form a bond so strong they are willing to go through nature itself to preserve. It’s touching and at the same time lighthearted entertainment people of all ages can enjoy.

Forget the DVD version included in the pack, this movie was best watched on a Blu-ray format for its gorgeous and rare handpainted animation.