Back in 2011, Funimation was giving Dragon Ball Z fans exactly what they wanted. They were finishing up their releases of the Dragon Boxes, which fans outside of Japan had been wanting for years. But Funimation went above and beyond, releasing beautiful looking Blu-rays. Being HD and from 16mm sources, they obviously looked better than the already pretty good-looking Dragon Box sets.
Then, after only two volumes, the Blu-ray releases stopped. But a few months ago, Funimation put a survey online where fans could voice their opinion on how they think Funimation should go about finishing the series. Today, the good folks over at Kanzenshuu.com have found out that the new Blu-rays will be released in season sets at a lower per-episode price. But, there is some bad news; they will be cropped to 16×9 widescreen.
Funimation has made this mistake before with their panned “Orange Brick” season sets. These sets were filled with excessive DNR and were cropped. So naturally these were the sets that stayed in print and the Dragon Boxes quickly went out of print. Image quality was smudged out and a good portion of the frame was missing from these sets. Needless to say, these sets should be avoided.
Many thought Funimation had learned their lesson and weren’t going to go back to their old ways. Not much is known about these new, unannounced sets. It’s very possible they will be using the masters they made for the Orange Bricks, especially if cost was such an issue.
Hopefully, there is still enough time for fans to make Funimation change their minds, but I wouldn’t hold my breath.