Code Geass Lelouch of the Rebellion R2: Part 1 (a J!-ENT Anime DVD Review)
October 10, 2010 by Dennis Amith
“Code Geass Lelouch” returns with the sequel “Code Geass Lelouch of the Rebellion R2” which takes place a year after the events of the first season finale. Action-packed, dark and entertaining episodes that the first season was known for, but a bit more emotional (and emotionally twisted) this time around. Part 1 is packed with special features and overall, if you enjoyed the first season, you’ll definitely want to check out the sequel!
Image courtesy of © 2006-2008 SUNRISE/PROJECT GEASS, MBS, CHARACTER DESIGN © 2006 CLAMP
DVD TITLE: Code Geass Lelouch of the Rebellion R2: Part 1
DURATION: 7 Episodes (175 Minutes)
DVD INFORMATION: Original Uncut Episodes,English and Japanese Stereo, 1:78:1 anamorphic widescreen, Bilingual (Japanese and English), English Subtitles
COMPANY: Sunrise/Bandai Entertainment
RATED: Suggested 13 and Up
Release Date: August 18, 2009
Produced by MBS, SUNRISE, PROJECT GEASS
Original Story by Ichirou Ohkouchi and Goro Taniguchi
Director: Goro Taniguchi
PRODUCERS: Hiroshi Morotomi, Yoshitaka Kawaguchi, Takuo Munegishi, Atsushi Yukawa
Character Design: Takahiro Kimura
Character Design Concept: CLAMP
Art Director: Yoshinori Hishinuma
Mecha Design/Character Design: Kenji Teraoka
Main Animators: Takahiro Kimura, Yuriko Chiba, Eiji Nakada, Seiichi Nakatani
Assistant Director: Kazuya Murata
Assistant Series Planner: Hiroyuki Yoshino
Series Planner: Ichirou Ohkouchi
Knightmare Design: Akira Yasuda, Eiji Nakada, Junichi Akutsu (BEE CRAFT)
Featuring the following voice talent:
Jun Fukuyama/Johnny Yong Bosch as Lelouch Lamperouge
Takahiro Sakurai/Yuri Lowenthal as Suzaku Kururugi
Yukana/Kate Higgins as C.C.
Akeno Watanabe/Megan Hollingshead as Viletta Nu
Ami Koshimizu/Karen Strassman as Kallen Stadtfeld
Fumiko Orikasa/Amy Kincaid as Shirley Fenette
Jouji Nakata/Jamieson Price as Diethard Ried
Junko Minagawa/Mary Elizabeth McGlynn as Cornelia Li Britannia
Kaori Nazuka/Rebecca Forstadt as Nunnally Lamperouge
Kazato Tomizawa/Cindy Robinson as V.V.
Kazunari Tanaka/Michael Lindsay as Shinichiro Tamaki
Ken Narita/Crispin Freeman as Jeremiah Gottwald
Kikuko Inoue/Deborah Sale Butler as Cecile Croomy
Masayo Kurata/Laura Bailey as Rakshata Chawla
Mitsuaki Madono/Kirk Thornton as Kaname Ougi
Noriaki Sugiyama/Brian Beacock as Rivalz Cardemonde
Norihiro Inoue/Troy Baker as Schneizel El Britannia
Omi Minami/Michelle Ruff as Euphemia Li Britannia
Saeko Chiba/Kim Mai Guest as Nina Einstein
Sayaka Ohara/Julie Ann Taylor as Milly Ashford
Tetsu Shiratori/Liam O’Brien as Lloyd Asplund
Yuuji Takada/Steven Blum as Kyoshiro Todo
On August 10th of the year 2010 the Holy Empire of Britannia began a campaign of conquest, its sights set on Japan. In the span of one month the island nation was conquered. As a dominion of the Empire the newly acquired territory was renamed Area 11. The rights of its citizens were severely limited and an economic depression followed for the Japanese, now known as Elevens.
Just as things seemed at their bleakest one man chose to stand up and fight, the masked crusader Zero. Leading his Order of Black Knights, Zero instigated a full scale revolution against Britannia culminating in one final battle, the Black Rebellion. Heavy casualties were seen by both sides but ultimately Britannia stood the victor resulting in Zero’s execution. And thus was history written.
The year is now 2018. With Zero dead and the remnants of the Black Knights being swept up by the Britannian forces, a forced state of peace settles over Area 11. The rights of the Elevens remain limited but with no one to lead them and the defeat during the Black Rebellion hanging over them, the Japanese people remain under the boot of Britannian oppression with no hope to overcome.
“CODE GEASS: Lelouch of the Rebellion” has been a gripping and thrilling series since the beginning of its first season. An anime series that features drama and action, strong character development, the pace never slows down, things continue to escalate with each episode and manages to captivate you by its well-written storyline and beautiful animation.
And now available on DVD is the four volume sequel, “CODE GEASS: Lelouch of the Rebellion R2” from Bandai Entertainment. The first season which aired on TBS ran from October 2006 through July 2007. While the sequel aired on TBS through April through September 2008, both seasons featured 25 episodes each.
The Series revolves around Lelouch Lamperouge, one of the children of the Britannian Emperor. As a child, Lelouch has harbored resentment towards his Britannian roots since the death and murder of his mother, Marianne vi Britannia. When he was younger, he spoke out against his father and by doing so, he and his sister Nunally (who was blinded and crippled during the murder of her mother) have lived with the Ashford family, hiding their Britannian ancestry. But for Lelouch, he has always wanted to take revenge against his father, even if it means destroying Britannia, including his siblings.
Japan has harbored a hatred towards Britannia, ever since the country took over Japan, made the major cities into slums and have called the Japanese not by their country name but they are known as “Elevens”. In the first volume of “CODE GEASS: Lelouch of the Rebellion”, we see how Lelouch has received the power of the Geass. A power given to him by an immortal being known as C.C. (the girl with green hair) but for a price, which is a contract between the two which is unknown. The Geass allows Lelouch to use it once on a person by looking into their eyes and have them do whatever he wants. With this power, he has assumed the identity of the terrorist ZERO, who has managed to amass a great number of Elevens and name them the “Black Masks”, a group that counters the Britannians and eventually taking their technology and grow in force.
Opposing Zero is actually Lelouche’s childhood friend Suzaku Kururgi, the pilot of Britannia’s awesome mecha known as the “Lancelot”. He is the son of Japan’s last Prime Minister and also the primary Japanese taken in by the Britannia and a warrior who opposes all that Zero stands for. He and Princess Euphemia (Lelouche’s half sister and third princess of Britannia) are quite smitten with each other.
In the end of the first season, Lelouch kills his sister Princess Euphemia in front of Suzaku. Lelouch then announces his plan for the United States of Japan. Meanwhile, Suzaku learns of Zero’s power thanks tot he mysterious V.V., who has kidnapped Lelouch’s sister Nunnally. Because his sister means everything to him, Lelouch goes after her. But without a leader, the Black Knights lose against the Brittanian army and the series ended with Suzaku and even Kalen learning the true identity of Zero, that the leader is Lelouch.
“Code Geass Lelouch of the Rebellion R2” takes place a year after the events of the Black Rebellion. For some reason, Lelouch Lamperouge is living his regular school life but has no memories of his life within the past year. The Black Knights lead a rebellion to recover Lelouch.
“Code Geass Lelouch of the Rebellion R2: Part 1” comes with episodes 1-7 on two discs:
- Turn 01 – The Day a Demon Awakens – Lelouch attends school and live life like a normal teenager but something is not right…he has a younger brother named Rolo and a mysterious green hair woman wants to reawaken his memories.
- Turn 02 – Plan for Independent Japan – Lelouch remembers how his father, the emperor, had erased his memories and now know Rolo must be a spy. But he must pretend that he’s still the same, while as Zero, directing the Black Knights in counterattacking the Britannian forces.
- Turn 03 – Imprisoned in Campus – Because Lelouch was at Ashford Academy during the broadcast, Villeta Nu and her division have doubt he was Zero after all. Meanwhile, the Black Knights take on a Knightmare prototype.
- Turn 04 – Counterattack of the Gallows – Lelouch realizes that Rolo has a Geass but using his quick intuition, Lelouch risks his life to save Rolo and thus winning his loyalty.
- Turn 05 – Knights of the Round – Suzaku returns to Ashford Academy to check on Lelouch after sights of Zero start happening. Lelouch continues to play along that he’s a regular student.
- Turn 06 – Surprise Attack over the Pacific– Lelouch/Zero managed to take his sister Nunally and convince her to join them but learns that Nunnally wants to continue the Specially Administrated Zone of Japan.
- Turn 07 – The Abandoned Mask – Lelouch is depressed that his sister Nunnally is sworn in as the new Viceroy of Area 11. Nunnally reveals to the world that she wants to restore the Specially Administrated Zone of Japan.
“Code Geass Lelouch of the Rebellion R2” is featured 1:78:1 Anamorphic Widescreen. The animation and video quality is colorful and digitally modern since it is a newer anime television release. What I love about the video quality is the sheer amount of people involved. Everyone with detail, buildings, mecha and the destruction has detail. The character designs based from CLAMP’s character design concepts are just fresh and cool to look at. One of the coolest looking character designs in an anime mecha series without being a full-on mecha series. Very cool!
As expected from a recent anime series, video quality was just great. From the character animation to the backgrounds, everything was colorful and vibrant. And because this series features so many scenes throughout Japan, this series really featured so much background art and characters. Everything looked awesome! Again, I’m very impressed with how much went into creating a single episode.
AUDIO & SUBTITLES:
As for the audio, the audio is English and Japanese in Dolby Digital (English and Japanese 2.0 stereo). I preferred to have my audio setting set at stereo on all channels for a more immersive soundscape in my 7.2 setup. But dialogue and music comes quite clear through the front channels. Voice acting is well-done on both the Japanese and English soundtrack. So, whichever preference you choose, the voice acting is well-done for both audio tracks.
Subtitles are in English.
“Code Geass Lelouch of the Rebellion R2: Part 1” comes with the following special features:
- EXTRA FLASH: BABA THEATER REDUX: EPISODE 1 – (0:42) Featuring two short “BABA THEATER REDUX” episodes with Nunally and the other with Rolo.
- BROADCAST VERSION OF PROLOGUE (IN JAPAN): TURN 01 – (:38) An introduction prologue for “Code Geass Lelouch of the Rebellion R2”.
- BROADCAST VERSION OF NEXT TURN (IN JAPAN) – The “next episode” previews from episodes 1-4.
- AUDIO COMMENTARY TURN 01 – Featuring audio commentary with Japanese voice talent Jun Fukuyama (Lelouch), Yukana (C.C.), Ami Hoshimizu (Kallen), Ichirou Ohkouchi (original story) and Yoshitaka Kawaguchi (Producer).
- AUDIO COMMENTARY TURN 04 – Featuring audio commentary with Japanese voice talent Jun Fukuyama (Lelouch), Takahiro Mizushima (Rolo), Kazuo Miyake (Unit Director), Yoshitaka Kawaguchi (Producer)
- TEXTLESS OPENING: “02” – (1:31) The textless opening theme “02” by Orange Range.
- KEY ANIMATION GALLERY: PART 1 & PART 2 – Using your remote, you can view the key animation gallery for “Code Geass Lelouch of the Rebellion R2”.
- TRAILERS – Bandai Entertainment trailers.
- EXTRA FLASH: BABA THEATER REDUX EP. 2 & EP. 3 – Featuring two short “BABA THEATER REDUX” episodes with C.C. & Nunnally (1:04) and the other with Rolo (:30).
- BROADCAST VERSION OF PROLOGUE (IN JAPAN) – (:38) An introduction prologue for “Code Geass Lelouch of the Rebellion R2” for episodes 5 & 7.
- BROADCAST VERSION OF NEXT TURN (IN JAPAN) – The “next episode” previews from episodes 5-7.
- AUDIO COMMENTARY: TURN 06 – Featuring audio commentary by Japanese voice talents Jun Fukuyama (Lelouch), Ami Hoshimizu (Kallen), Kenji Teraoka (Mecha Design) and Satoshi Toba (Unit Director).
- Textless Ending: “Shiawase Neiro”– Textless closing theme “Shiawase Nero” by Orange Range.
- Key Animation Gallery: Part 3 – Using your remote, you can cycle through the key animation gallery.
- Trailers – Trailers for upcoming Bandai Entertainment series.
“CODE GEASS: Lelouch of the Rebellion” is a fantastic series and so far “Code Geass Lelouch of the Rebellion R2”, looks to be an entertaining thus far. Despite the fact that there are many characters in this series, the story is well-written and well-animated that you know each of these character’s major role within the Black Mask or the Britannia Army.
The first series did a great job in introducing many characters and establishing them. So, far it’s still to early to see where “Code Geass Lelouch of the Rebellion R2” is headed but we do know that Lelouch is back but where the first season, we kind of sympathize with what he is doing, somehow we are starting to see Lelouch become much more twisted and dark.
It seems that with this sequel, where the first would focus on Lelouch and everyone around him, this time around, the storyline seems to focus more on Lelouch, Nunnally, Suzaku, Kallen and Rolo. We’re not seeing the usual strategy of Zero and the Black Knights like the previous season, if anything, it’s more of a depressed Lelouch because his sister is what kept him grounded but now his sister is Viceroy and wants to wants to continue with the Specially Administrated Zone of Japan, it goes against what Lelouch has been trying to do and it makes you wonder if Lelouch will end up turning against his sister.
Again, it’s too early to tell where the series is going but so far, so good. As always with this series, animation is top notch, character and mecha designs are awesome and for this first volume, you get a good number of special features including commentary on both discs.
Overall, if you enjoyed “Code Geass: Lelouch of the Rebellion”, more than likely you are going to stay tuned and will continue to watch “Code Geass Lelouch of the Rebellion R2”. Smart, funny, dark, action-packed and just so much packed into these episodes, definitely a series worth watching and a DVD worth purchasing!
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