Right Stuf / Nozomi
The original Dirty Pair return one final time in three, hour-long adventures that, while derivative of past adventures, continue the fun and wackiness of the series.
All three episodes involve some combination of conspiracy (either government or corporate based) and scientific research (either benevolent or evil). Both themes were prevalent in the preceding series, but such episodes were mixed in with more adventurous and random outings. Having to focus on a single story, the writers decided to stick to their wheelhouse. It’s not a bad thing, as they are indeed good with this type of story, but I miss the variety.
The set begins with 1985’s ‘Project Eden,’ the only actual ‘movie’ of the three, running 80 and having received cinema distribution. Kei and Yuri are sent to the mining planet Agerna, where the made-up mineral Vizorium is mined. Governments are fighting over the mineral, which will greatly improve spaceflight technology, but the scientist researching it has other goals.
There’s a great ‘Dirty Pair’ scene in the film. While searching an abandoned mining facility. they happen across a bathroom and immediately decide to take a bath together. It perfectly encapsulates the characters. Amazing skills, with no sense of responsibility.
The second feature (technically and OVA), ‘Flight 005 Conspiracy’ is reminiscent of a two-part episode from the TV series called ‘You’re Kidding, 463 People Disappear?’ It begins with a space liner explosion and the search for a missing scientist, whom the lovely angels come to believe was on the spacecraft. Luckily, the explosion doesn’t seem to be as it appears. In the similar TV series, the plane lands, sans passengers, who have been taken for ransom.
It’s not a re-make, but it’s worth noting the similarity because it’s symbolic of the set as a whole. The features are not an expansion or evolution of the Dirty Pair franchise, they’re a refinement of it. A distillation of its best parts.
The final feature is ‘Affair of Nolandia.’ Kei and Yuri’s search for a missing girl brings them to a mysterious forest filled with fantastical creatures and illusions. But like all Dirty Pair adventures, the magical forest has a scientific explanation.
The Dirty Pair Features are essentially more of the same. They’re just like longer episodes of the TV and OVA series, with the same tone and story structure, and same 2 dimensional characters. That said, they’re very good episodes, some of best of the series; so if you like what you’ve seen before, you’ll like this as well.
The three ‘movies’ are presented on three DVDs. ‘Project Eden’ is in wide screen, while the others are full, which is their original aspect ratio. The only extras are a line art gallery and trailers, but one neat addition is the inclusion of both the ADV Films dub from a few years ago, and the older Streamline dub from the ’90s.