Thursday, May 21, 2009

Re-Dub in the Name of the Moon in a Car?

Welcome to another blog post by me, your Navigator Richard J., and today I have news that might not be news to anyone who pays attention to a certain other blog run by a certain company that is certainly awesome right now to English dub fans.

I'm talking about the possibility of a Re-dub of Sailor Moon and Initial D anime!

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Funimation's rep on the blog posted a survey with a Re-Dub of these two series as possible choices. Now, I don't know about anyone else but that really gets me fired up!

As you may know, the English dubs produced for both Initial D and Sailor Moon were not of the high standards we expect.

For anyone familiar with G.I. Joe, you don't need to know about the censorship and poor editorial choices made with Sailor Moon to be unhappy with Dic Entertainment. Anime fans know that the first two seasons of this EXTREMELY popular magical girl anime series were treated badly by Dic. Six episodes were outright cut and two were merged, a practice we would all see put to even more abhorrent use by 4Kids Entertainment when that company acquired One Piece. Also the theme song was altered from a love song to a superhero anthem and the dub itself has been described as "indifferent" by British authors Helen McCarthy and Jonathan Clements.

Several minutes of show were removed by editors to make room for commercials, to censor plot and visual elements that they arbitrarily deemed inappropriate for children and to allow "Sailor Says" edu-tainment segments to be added to the end of each episode. (Again, those familiar with G.I. Joe may be suffering a flashback or three. And knowing is half the battle in the name of the moon?)

Additional series from the mega-hit meta-franchise were picked up by Optimum Productions for Cloverway, which while not skipping or merging episodes made a number of other changes, such as removing a lesbian romance theme between Sailor Uranus and Sailor Neptune. They became cousins. And, since the visuals were largely unchanged, romantically inclined lesbian cousins. (Mild incest is better than just good old lesbian love?)

The fifth Sailor Moon series, Sailor Stars, has never been legally adapted in English for proper release. Reasons why don't matter but I would mention that bootlegs of this series are quite big sellers. Expensive big sellers.

For a fun? note, apparently the franchise is considered something EVIL to Mexican Catholics as a group there forced the anime and manga off the off the market. I'm not kidding, check Wiki.

Sailor Moon had the deck stacked against it with retailers not supporting the DVD release, poor time slots for the TV airings and an "indifferent" dub. Perhaps Funimation will show us all how truly great this series can be? We must vote and then wait and see.

On a different note, for anyone who is a fan of cars and racing, Initial D is a standout series. Or at least it was before Tokyopop got a hold of it. Sadly, an in-house "musician" DJ Milky was allowed to change the series music from Eurobeats to rap and hip-hop of dubious quality. Additionally, changes were made to characters names and to information about the cars and the racing done in the series. With a heavy dose of out-of-date right after recording slang talk in the dub too, there was no reason to expect this series to succeed.

Hoping to capitalize on the success of Hollywood depictions of street-racing, Tokyopop sent out Initial D after trying to make it less like an anime and more like The Fast and The Furious, which would be fine except. . . no, actually massive editing and censoring of anime is never a good idea. Even if it is only changing a few characters' names and screwing up the details of racing. (Okay, you can hear my sarcasm right? The sarcasm accent is so think you can cut it with a machete.)

Tokyopop, hoping to convince anime fans that this release was packaged golden awesome by referring to it as the "Tricked-Out" version of the show.

This strategy didn't work so good and some cite the botched Initial D release for the rapid end of Tokyopop's anime licensing venture. Others say it was just one of those things. Either way, perhaps DJ Milky should remember he isn't why we watch anime. Yes, Stuart J. Levy, founder, CEO and Chief Creative Officer of Tokyopop, you really need to stop trying to make things "better."

Anime fans want "Original and Un-Cut" with an English dub that isn't filled with poor localization choices. We also want other things that tend to be a bit more negotiable. Screwing up on "Original and Un-Cut" isn't.

Didn't you're mother ever teach you: IF IT AIN'T BROKE, DON'T FIX IT!

For fans of both Sailor Moon and Initial D, we may have hope of a Re-Dub and a return to awesome! Vote in Funimation's survey. Contact them about your fandom desires.

Bye-ni!

2 comments:

  1. While I have no interest in Initial D, I do find the possibility of a Sailor Moon remake quite awesome, I'd definitely support it!

    I'm sure a lot of the old-school anime fan FUNi VAs would like to get in on that if FUNi does go through with it.

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  2. I am not interested in either series, but it's important to note that Tokyopop is not the evil 4kids people try to make them out to be. Most of their stuff is avaible (or was) uncut and with decent dubs. Of course it mostly sold like crap, so Tokyopop wanted to cash in with Initial D. They dubbed it like that to get it on TV, of course they must have been high on some interesting and very illegal drugs if they thought Cartoon Network would ever play an anime like that. Of course no network wanted to play the show, it was already dubbed, and they released it. Probally sold bad for them too. I don't support editing or screwin up anime, but at least there was a reason to their madness.

    Well anyway this is interesting news. Everyone always wanted Sailor Moon and Initial D, uncut and with epic dubs. Be funny if Funi (haha I'm terrible at wordplay) atcually delivers. Sadly I don't see either series selling to well. Maybe Initial D, but Sailor Moon is too long, and the boat has sailed on it long ago IMO.

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