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Discotek Media Announces Sonic X Blu-Ray ‘Original Japanese Version’

Its the Blu-ray news Sonic fans have been waiting for since the release of the original Sonic X Blu-ray in 2019. Discotek Media has recently aired a panel on their Twitch channel showcasing new releases leading up to the current plans for next year. Among the announcements was a new Blu-ray set for the ‘subtitled’ version of Sonic X labelled as ‘Original Japanese Version.’ This set features all episodes uncut with the original audio tracks previously unreleased to home video outside of Japan. This includes the “Metarex” story arc that was not broadcast in Japan until 2020. Brought by popular fan demand and even a push internally at Discotek from producer Brady Hartel, this release comes in featuring the best possible standard resolution presentation these episodes have ever seen with the launch window slated for winter of 2023. (Edited 10/26/2022) Which is a few months from now!)

This new release of Sonic X includes subtitles previously seen on Hulu with additional revised translations such as signs and commercial bumpers, (The one with the character stats to wrap around commercial bumpers.) 5.1 surround audio tracks originally heard from the Japanese HISPEC DVD releases as well as the 2.0 channel audio mixes, and of course the credit-less opening and ending sequences along with the pilot episodes from the English and Japanese versions.

As mentioned in a previously linked tweet and like all releases from Discotek Media, producer Brady Hartel mentions that a lot of interest in anime material that gets re-released outside of Japan is gauged upon releases like this (and leads to justifying bringing back more shows like Sonic X) and encourages everyone to buy and support this release. The original Blu-ray set featuring the 4kids dub featured many changes and alterations from the original Japanese version that they could not be bundled with the original set and thus were released separately, much like how they’re handling their release of the first season of Digimon. This makes it impossible to pair the dub audio with the original source material due to major edits and changes to the runtime. (Likely for reasons having to do with western broadcast standards for children’s television and making more room for commercial breaks.) Brady does mention on Twitter that the songs from the band Off Course which were in the initial Japanese broadcast will not be featured on the set much like other home video releases of the series, but will still feature key songs such as Live and Learn.

Brady also notes that releases for other Sonic media such as the ABC Saturday Morning series (SatAM), the two-part OVA and Sonic Underground are unlikely to happen in the near future due to varying legal hurdles compromising any potential release. This currently stands as the last release of Sonic media from Discotek themselves. He does note that the previous release of Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog has been successful for the company.

While Brady is a member of the Sonic Retro forums under the handle Kushami, other members of Retro have also been contributing to this release such as Windii working on translation, Mendinso working on the revised subtitles as well as Tanks404 and Quazza working on the video restoration. You can tell this will have a lot of care put into this release that may not be there otherwise compared to releases of kids shows on home video.

The set is not currently available for pre-order, however listings will likely arrive closer to release of the set early next year. In the meantime the Discotek sets for the 4Kids Sonic X dub as well as Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog are still available for sale.

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