Finally, someone has combined the love of everyone’s two favorite things — reality cooking competitions and anime!
That’s right, Sentai Filmworks has released Food Wars! on Blu-ray, and I bet it’s not quite what you’re thinking…
Anime is usually a very divisive genre. You either can hop on the ridiculous train, or you’ll let that one leave the station without you on it. So, I should start by saying that this set is unlikely to change your mind on the subject. However, if you are open to anime and love cooking shows like Top Chef, then boy do I have something for you today.
In Food Wars, we follow our main protagonist, Yukihira Soma. A bit of a cooking prodigy, Soma has learned it all by working in the family diner with his father, a world class chef. Throughout their time working together, the two have developed a friendly competition over who can cook the best meals (and sometimes, they aim to make the most heinous concoctions imaginable). Naturally, Soma plans on taking over the family diner after his pops retires… that is, until the shop closes and his father goes touring the world and cooking for his friends.
Unable to join his father, Soma is sent to Totsuki Culinary Academy, one of the most well known and respected cooking academies in the world. But his confidence and lack of traditional education could prove to be a hindrance in his goal to graduate top of his class and be one of The Ten, the elite top tier students at the school.
Throughout his time at the school, Soma faces a number of interesting challenges and Food Wars (intense one on one duel style cookoffs). Anyone who watches reality cooking shows will immediately know what I am talking about. However, thanks to the magic that is anime, instead of (what I consider) somewhat dull attempts at making cooking sexy, the animators can really step it up a notch and make each step exciting. From the sha-shing sounds and speed chopping, to the flames roaring up as our hero cooks a dish, the entire process of cooking is done quickly and in a satisfying manner, which really makes this show awesome. Oh, that and the fact that everyone who tastes his food either has an orgasm or their clothes go flying off (or both, this is anime after all). Toss in a range of supporting characters who enjoy, admire, and envy Soma, and you have a pretty decent recipe for a good time.
Animated shows are sort of hard to rate, but the art style lends itself to looking fantastic on the format. Colors are bright and vibrant, and were plenty sharp.
This release features both English and Japanese 2.0 audio tracks, and they sound pretty good. The cooking scenes are by far the most exciting, and I am curious how good they would have sound with a few more channels tossed in the mix. Regardless, it’s a great sounding show and I have absolutely no complaints.
- Clean Opening Animations
- Clean Closing Animations
- Sentai Trailers
Not a lot here in terms of special features, which is a shame. But this season is longer than standard for anime (24 episodes compared to the typical 13), so there is still plenty of content.
As far as packaging is concerned, you get the three blu-ray discs in a standard 3-disc case with single sided artwork. This set is not exactly impressive on the shelf or rich with features, unfortunately.
I’m not usually a big fan on cooking shows (even though my wife is). However, Food Wars! has just the right mix of humor and actual cooking to keep me thoroughly entertained the whole time. If you don’t mind the over-the-top sexual style (nothing pornographic, just anime style moans and clothes blowing off — bits are always covered up), then I definitely give this a recommend.
Note: This Blu-ray was sent to us for review. This has not affected our judgement or editorial process in any way. Please contact us if you have any questions regarding this process.