The future-fantasy world of Remnant is filled with ravenous monsters, treacherous terrain, and more villains than you can shake a sniper-scythe at. Fortunately, Beacon Academy is training Huntsmen and Huntresses to battle the evils of the world, and Ruby, Weiss, Blake, and Yang are ready for their first day of class.
Box Set Review:
First off, the packaging for he RWBY Beacon Steelbook is gorgeous. Like, damn that is pretty. I love the slip cover design, it puts a focus on team RWBY- new comers will know exactly who the main cast is. Its a sleek, minimal, design, that grabs the eye and gets to the point. The inside of the case also takes a very spartan approach, three discs- one for each season- and no clutter. DVDs are not included in this set, it is ONLY the blu-rays and I am okay with that. I, personally, never use the DVDs for anything–its just extra packaging that Im being charged for but dont use. Just having the blu-rays is how I like it. Having such a bare-bones approach to the packaging is nice; its like Rooster Teeth is saying: you should just watch the show, pay no mind to anything else.
The Beacon Steelbook holds the first three season to the RWYB series (The show currently has three seasons available, the fourth is currently incoming and highly anticipated). Anyone who has seen the show knows that RWBY isn’t exactly a full episode kind of show. Originally, RWBY started out as a short–episodes were about 6-9 minutes long, and with each season installment the episodes got a little longer. The run time for the RWBY collection isn’t very long, its only about 7.5 hours. However, Rooster Teeth was aware that even with three seasons in a single case, the watch time is pretty narrow, so they included some great bonus features. And we all know, how much I love bonus features.
Rooster Teeth delivered on their special feature content: we get behind the scene looks on the creation of RWBY, episode break downs and commentaries, along with all the hype trailers for the first RWBY launch. Generally, I dont care for the trailers very much but the RWBY hype trailers are great because they are like mini stories/introductions to your main cast, along with some great soundtracks. I love getting behind the scenes looks at the series Im watching, so this bonus feature always gets high marks from me; its cool to see the animation techniques used and just taking a peak behind the production curtain . Episode commentaries are also another thing I enjoy, it fun to learn how a scene was accomplished and get in the head of studio as they were making the episode, and what they were aiming to do.
Not a lot of special features are included in the RWBY Beacon Steelbook, but they are good bonus features to have and are enjoyable and solid in their own right.
NOTE: Mithical Entertainment received an early copy of RWBY Volumes 1-3: Beacon Steelbook for a fair review.
Rooster Teeth has managed to entertain a legion of fans with their witty and comedic story telling through a varying range of media. However, a few years ago Rooster Teeth decided to take a return dip into the original content pool and delivered an anime inspired, American made, animation series that won them a larger cult following: RWBY.
Anime fans are hard to please, whenever we’re looking at other animated series or interpretations–we’re a bunch of people that like anime that is from Japan for particular reasons. There are very few western animated shows that capture the adult themes and entertainment value that anime so flawlessly does. However, it seems like Rooster Teeth knew what they were delivering with RWBY and felt confident in how it could possibly be received; RWBY was thrown directly onto Crunchyroll (the go to anime streaming source outside of Japan) to compete with other new anime seasons. And it succeeded. Oh boy, did RWBY succeed.
I think what really captivated fans for the first season of RWBY was that it hit a lot of anime notes, without being a blatant rip off that didn’t understand the anime culture. Sure, the actual animation to RWBY was….different, very different, from the other shows it was airing with–it was a little rough around the edges, you could tell it was all digital and 3D…something that doesn’t usually fair well with the anime crowd- and it was nearly a turn off for me- but what made RWBY so enduring was the cast of characters and story.
RWBY set itself up, and drew people in, with a diverse cast of girls that are strongly influenced by fairy tales. Ruby is red riding hood, Weiss is Snow White, Blake is Beauty (and….well, I wont spoil it) and Yang would be Goldilocks–all training to become Huntresses. The world of Remnant also takes a strong influence from fairy tales, as the prominent antagonist as referred to as Grim. Team RWBY is formed at Beacon Academy, where they train together to become the next wave of Hunters and Huntresses to protect the world from Grim. The world becomes more fleshed out, with politics and cultural clashes throughout the first season. The story doesn’t stay bare minimum or basic, but escalates very quickly into the deeper layers of the world and the characters.
And frankly, what I think had people tuned into RWBY the first season was the action sequences. Sure, the animation was a little off and rough, but the fight scenes were just amazingly fun to watch.
And this was just a HYPE trailer before the series came out– the action and fight scenes in the show were just as fun and dazzling to watch, specially when you have a team of very different people, with very different ways of fighting, choreographed together. Its fun to see every character have their own style, while blasting holes into Grim. Running joke with RWBY cultists? “It’s also a gun.” It cracks us up every time but its one of the many things that we love about the combat in this series. Also, the soundtrack was pretty awesome too–no lie, I have a RWBY playlist on my Spotify account.
I always like to refer the first season as the hook for RWBY. Its seems relatively shallow, with the story and world building, even some of the character development is pretty standard, but it gives enough of a flare and twist for people to want to stay and see how it all plays out and Rooster Teeth delivers on the overall development and quality for each season/installment of the RWBY series.
Season 2 we not only see a tremendous improvement on the animation quality, but a ton of character development–and not only with team RWBY but all of the supporting cast as well. Season 2 really stepped up the show cast quality, you were introduced to everybody in the first season, but you didn’t get to know them. Rooster Teeth was listening to the fans, and realized they were building followings for other students that the story, technically, was not focusing on. It was nice to see the cast expand out, with deeper development not only on your main characters, but everyone surrounding them. No student was too small for the RWBY universe and the story line backed this thought up.
Sure, the series is called RWBY–following your primary characters, but Rooster Teeth continued to develop the story to not only focus on four girls but the entire world of Remnant and how this newest generation of Hunters is affected by choices their seniors make. What continued to make RWBY successful through season 2 was that it kept the action, flash, and humor, that made it popular in season one but started to develop the characters and story into a much more complex and layered world. All the while, including more of a cast for more audience members to relate to.
With season 3 we, again, see a vast improvement in every department. The episodes are becoming longer, the animation is started to get cleaned up, looks smoother, and just an all around higher grade. The story in season 3 starts to move away from deep character development, but focuses on the world of Remnant as a whole. That the story scope is not as small as we were thinking–this isn’t about students looking to become Hunters, there is a bigger plot moving and it involves everybody in every nation. I believe its season 3 where mini “break” episodes were included: small segments that weren’t part of the show plot, but gave insight to the inner workings of the world of Remnant. History lessons on the nations, explanations on their power sources and semblances, etc. Just extra knowledge about the world that fans visit every week–and that was a super nice touch.
Rooster Teeth isn’t resting on their laurels with RWBY. They know what makes it popular but doesn’t use the same tactic over an over again to keep its audience engaged. They continue to grow the world, lore, and characters.
You’ll be able to pick up the RWBY Volumes 1-3: Beacon Steelbook blu ray set 10/4/16 for $49. Can’t wait? Here’s the Amazon Link:
[amazon asin=B01I9KH4ZG&template=add to cart]
DO IT. For $49 you can NOT go wrong with this purchase. The actual set itself is high quality with good special features. The series is solid and gets better with each passing season, developing rich and layered content in both it’s characters and world building.