Originally released by Manga Entertainment back in 1996 on VHS and never on DVD by them, Discotek Media picked up the rights to Mad Bull 34 in 2012 and brought it out on DVD back in 2013. The release has now finally gone out of print and is on the open market for a new pickup by someone looking to add one of the more controversial shows out there to their catalog.
The property is based on the manga of the same name from Kazuo Koike of Lone Wolf & Cub fame that ran from 1986 to 1990 and achieved twenty-seven volumes. It also got an update with Mad Bull 2000 released in 1999 with seven volumes released. The anime adaptation is certainly a piece of over the top work as well with Satoshi Dezaki directing it for anime studio Magic Bus for the four OVA episodes that were produced.
The Japanese cast includes Akio Ohtsuka as John “Sleepy” Estes (a.k.a. Mad Bull), Yasunori Matsumoto as Daizaburō “Eddie” Ban, Gara Takashima as Perine Valley, and Takkou Ishimori as Captain Allen. The English dub includes Alan Marriott as Diazaburo Edi-Ban and Allan Wenger as John “Sleepy” Estes (a.k.a. Mad Bull).
Plot Concept: Daizaburo “Eddie” Ban, a Japanese-American, joins the New York City’s toughest precinct, the thirty-fourth. On his first day he is partnered up with John Estes, nicknamed “Sleepy” by his friends and “Mad Bull” by his enemies, a cop who stops crime with his own violent brand of justice. Mad Bull makes no qualms about executing common thieves with shotgun blasts, even if they pose a minor threat. He often steals from prostitutes and does incredible amounts of property damage while fighting crime. Mad Bull’s unpoliceman-like behavior often puts him in hot water with his partner Daizaburo and the 34th precinct. However, despite how reckless or illegal these acts are, a good cause is always revealed (for example, Sleepy uses the money he steals from the prostitutes to fund a venereal disease clinic and a home for battered and raped women). Perrine Valley, a police lieutenant, joins Daizaburo and Sleepy later on to help them tackle more difficult cases involving the mafia and drug-running.