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4.0 out of 5 stars A rocky start leads to a stellar series, April 13, 2014
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This review is from: Psycho-Pass: Part One (Blu-ray/DVD Combo) (Blu-ray)
Psycho Pass was a surprise for me. While I had been intrigued by the trailer, I found the first two episodes extremely weak. The show looked good, and had a decent amount of action, the uneven dramatics in episode 2, mixed with a very nasty, brutal kidnapping in the first episode left a bad taste in my mouth. Still, I stuck with it, and by episode 4, I was hooked.

The characters are in very well written. While it took me some time for me to warm up to the two leads, once I got to the end of this set I was understanding them better, and felt for them as they struggled to find a balance between what is truly right, and what society tells them is right. The side characters are just as entertaining, with Masaoka and Yuki being stand outs for me (with Yuki being a huge shock, since she really only plays a very minor role until the last three episodes).

The art is solid, although some of the design choices, especially when it comes to the characters' eyes, can take some getting use to. The animation is beautiful, with a varied color palette used to create a vibrant and varied world. While the urban settings are drab and run down, the cyber world is flush with bright colors and over the top character designs. When the show moves to an all girls school it is awash with yellows and browns, creating a nostalgic world that seems almost out of place in the future. The action scenes shine, with fluid animation, and some creative uses of CGI when the camera switches to a first person perspective.

Psycho Pass is violent, and can almost feel cruel. This is a show where the heroes don't always make it in time, or they don't act fast enough, and because of that, some characters pay the ultimate price. While the second episode turns the emotional dramatics up so high it almost becomes laughable, the rest of the series gets a more solid grasp of the serious nature of what these characters have to deal with, and allows their relationships to develop at a more natural pace.

I listened to the dub of this show, and I have to say, Funimation continues to turn out some very strong work. While I still consider Shiki to be their best work, once the VA's get comfortable with their characters everyone turns in some stellar performances.

Technically the discs are strong. Both the Blu Ray and the DVD turn out great pictures, although Blu Ray is just a bit more vibrant. The audio is strong as well, with no drop outs, or weird distortions. There aren't a ton of extras, but that's pretty much par for the course for most current releases.

For those who are looking for some dark, futuristic crime drama, I highly recommend Psycho Pass. Now I just need to get my hands on volume 2!
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