Zatoichi, The Blind Swordsman

by Jerry A. Sierra


What to do with the extra disks

If you love the Zatoichi movies as much as I do, then they’re worth the cost, but what should you do with the extra disks? Why not share those extra disks with a friend or colleague? This may be a great opportunity to initiate a newbie to the series.

Right now Blu-ray owners are forced to pay for 18 disks they don’t need, and DVD owners must pony up for 9 Blu-ray disks they can’t play.

This is just mean. And don’t tell me it’s good for the economy. It sucks! And Ichi would not like the strong-arm approach to profits.

In Zatoichi 25 he asks the greedy bosses; “You’re trampling on people’s lives so you can make money. Don’t you think what you’re doing is a bit too nasty?”

Smart shoppers will probably choose to store their expensive disks elsewhere, which immediately diminishes the “value” of the pretty box.

The book is beautiful, but it will disappear into a bookshelf and may one day end up at a garage sale. Sadly, it doesn’t even list the length of the movies or include any photographs of Shintaro Katsu.

The real value in this package lies with the movies, not the popcorn. And the most beautiful thing on the shelf is still only something on the shelf.

Why not split the cost in advance?

What if two different buyers shared the expense and flipped a coin for the book? Being a gambler, Ichi would probably like that. It would still be a pricey endeavor, but with better ROI.

Or they could fight for it, which, in spite of appearances, Ichi would not like (and I tend to agree, though I’d say our side is losing that fight).

One possible solution:

• 1 buyer gets the book and the 9 Blu-rays, the other gets the box, the case and the 18 DVDs, or

• 1 buyer gets the case, the box and the 9 Blu-rays, the other gets the book and 18 DVDs.

Both options assume an even split of all costs, and both will have to spring for a suitable disk wallet or some kind of safe-to-use storage. And both sides get to watch the movies.

Being forced to buy two disks instead of getting a better price for the one you need always seemed wrong.

Let’s face it; the Blu-ray/DVD combo pack is a scam!

Sometimes there’s a need, sure, such as if you have a DVD player in your car and you want to make sure your little ones develop an early “watching” addiction that will help improve the balance sheets for media companies and optometrists.

Can you imagine trying to buy tires for your car and for every one tire that fits you’re also forced to buy one that doesn’t? There are Harvard grads at Good Year working on ways to implement this right now.

My own solution to the Zatoichi box set riddle is simple; I’m keeping the Blu-rays and giving away the rest of the stuff. I’m still not sure how to explain the empty slots, but I’ll think of something.

Such harmonious sharing of resources is also more ecologically sound in the long run.

NEXT: Ichi and The Biwa Priest

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