The DVD packaging of a movie may be the least important aspect of any film released to the masses. Obviously story structure, character development, and the artistic qualities of a cinematic adventure are far more important than the color of the slip. Regardless, when a company fails to keep consistency in its case design, the people who buy it are reminded of that flaw every time they look at their shelves.
It first bugged me nearly a decade ago, when the second Harry Potter dvd was released covered with pictures of the cast. Pictures, when the original film was a painting of the three leads along with several other key players. They kept the latter policy for each of the remaining films, making that first release the ugly duckling.
The issue, this time, stems from the recent release of Evangelion 2.22, and it could be mirroring the previous Harry Potter "syndrome". The cover for EVA 1.11 is above. Great, beautiful, shiny image of EVA unit 1 in the middle of a battle. No problems there.
I started to sense something was wrong weeks ago when I bought my copy (after regrettably having to cancel a viewing at a local theater) and noticed on the rightstuf.com page that the cover was simple, with a flat orange color and the
movie logo on the front. I did some digging, and came to the conclusion that it was just the japanese box art, used as a placeholder until Funimation released something more concrete. But as the days and weeks went by, I found advertising using that same simple, elegant, yet different box art style. Surely, I thought, its just the slip, and when I remove that it will reveal a more uniform piece of art, like the one shown here.
Unfortunately, I got the DVD in the mail today, and that is simply not the case. While the slip is just that; a removable piece of cardboard, the dvd case is emblazoned with a simple piece of Maki art. disappointing to say the least. Certainly not a deal-breaker, but at some point in the future I may go out of my way to find a solution for this, such as making a custom cover for each dvd.
Funimation had options. The simple logo design looks nice, and I would have been totally cool with that design for the first movie. I would have loved loved LOVED if they had used another piece of beautiful EVA art like they did with the first
US release, They're eye-pleasing, especially as posters, and there's at least three pieces they could have used right now. And then of course, there's the stairway images used for movie posters in Japan. They convey the progression from one film to another, and while they would have been too similar to use on a slip, they would have been great for interior art.
I just don't understand why its so hard to keep these things standardized. PS3 games now have two different cover styles checker-boarding my shelves (not to say anything of the accursed "greatest hits" collections). Films in the same series will keep or drop color schemes nearly at random (Matrix-Matrix Reloaded/Revolutions). It seems simple to me; either progress through a plan and keep every cover different with key aspects remaining the same (spine design, logo placement etc.) OR match things up nearly exactly the same, with only minor adjustments between them. Lord of the Rings and Star Wars are both examples of series with great, consistent box arts. They keep the same themes throughout, simply updating them for each new installment. Kill Bill is another great example. This fiasco with EVA, along with perhaps the Phoenix Wright and Metroid series, may be the worst offender I can remember.
Anyway, enough of my ranting. Do you agree that its an issue, or in an age where digital media seems poised to end dvd and blu-ray, is this a moot point?