Sunday, April 25, 2010

Fan Love Vs. Fan Hate.

Watashi no namae wa Richard J. and this is Blog of a Heretical Dub Lover, the place to spend a few precious moments of your life knowing you're somehow making the world a better place for English dub preferring anime fans! Today I bring you a bit of my thoughts on two competing aspects of fandom. Fan Love and Fan Hate!


I apologize in advance for the gratuitous use of TV Tropes linkies. (It's their fault for being so infinitely linkable. And addictive.) Please note, this is not intended as a rant.

So lets begin with a basic premise on my part: I believe that fandoms live and die by their willingness to adapt to and absorb new fans. Most fans lean toward the casual side of things and, over time, many fans who start young will age and leave the fandom entirely. Therefore, new fans must be found and encouraged to join the fandom community (or at least indulge privately) to maintain the fandom's overall numbers. (Any organization that suffers numerical attrition over time will eventually cease to exist right?)

Now let's talk about Fan Love and Fan Hate in detail.


Fan Love is something that's actually rarer than you might think. Some fans are very easy to please and make squee in joy. These fans are generally warm, friendly and typically a bit more open-minded. Anime fans of this type will gush over a series in a way that almost makes you wonder if they've had a bit too much sugar while you wish at the same time that you could be that happy while watching the same series. (Or any series if you're jaded enough.)

These fans are generally newer fans, not yet driven to cynicism by the constant flame wars and debates. (Subs vs. Dubs, lolicon and "is X genre ruining anime forever!" threads can kill these precious fans' very souls.) These fans get blasted by the Internet backdraft caused by both fans who treat anime far too seriously and fans who are filled with Fan Hate. Newer fans especially can feel very intimidated by the ostensible authority or power of older and "wiser" fans who more or less tell them they are morons for liking a show/genre/trope that is "obviously cliche" and "terrible."

Fan Love dies as a direct result of intimidation and massive pressure to stop enjoying something. Further, fans who like shows that are more niche or just different from the acceptable mainstream often encounter the problematic phenomena of loving a show that has a Love It or Hate It nature. In this scenario, a new fan filled with anime love finds a show and thinks "wow, I love this! I want to share my feelings with other fans because this show is just so awesome!" They go onto a forum or even start a face-to-face conversation with another fan they know. The result: They learn that the show is very polarizing and are assaulted with Fan Hate for loving the wrong thing. This is especially likely with certain types of shows.

Do you love guilty pleasure fanservice series? You're a pervert! Do Yaoi/Yuri tales make you squee? You're an annoying fangirl/fanboy! (This happens especially with Yaoi fans due to the larger fanbase spawning more bad fan examples.) Did that show with cute young girls make you smile? Prepare to be called a pedo! The scenarios are endless and new fans are often not prepared to deal with the sheer blast of Fan Hate they can get.

Finally, Fan Love sometimes results in fans actually liking an anime or a character in an anime for the same reasons as the Japanese. This might sound like a good thing but sometimes it turns out that other fans from your culture/ethnicity/whatever hate that anime or character because of those Japanese loved aspects. (The Trope Site's Anime/Manga examples include several characters I personally adore.)

Fan love can go way too far and become obsession as well, resulting in the more serious Japanese version of the Otaku rather than the "another word for anime fan" version used in the USA. Fan Love can occasionally, especially if the fan has low self-esteem and a high degree of Fan Hate exposure, result in becoming a hikkomori. Yes, you really can send some people into deep depression and isolation just by being mean to them. Straws and camel's backs, you feel me?

Despite all the issues, Fan Love is a necessary part of the fandom. Without fans who gush over a series or just promote the hell out of it, newbies can feel very alone in their likes and dislikes. It's fairly easy to go to any anime forum and find Shonen fans but you're going to have a much harder time with some genres. Specific series can be hard to find fellow fans of too if they are niche, old or just different. Naruto fans are everywhere buy how many Koi Kaze fans do you know?

Fan Love provides an endless source of new possibilities for fans, giving fans a chance to re-consider a show that reviewers have trashed or re-discover their own Fan Love. Sometimes fans become jaded by repetition or just get bored with their favorite genre/shows and Fan Love brings them back in. Fan Love can also provide a new perspective if everyone else is complaining about shows they've never even seen before or English dubs they've never heard.

Fan Love is good and needed for anime fandom. I Believe that Fan Love is lacking right now and that fans have become very cynical and often quite harsh in their way of thinking. There's so much doom-saying and bad-mouthing right now, with many fans often posting about how the latest anime season is "the worst ever" every time a new season starts. How does this make fans who like the new shows or old shows being slammed feel? Doesn't the overly negative nature of Fan Hate make fans feel unwelcome in the fanbase? If those fans are new fans or fans who buy a lot, wouldn't the negativity hurt the financial future of anime?

I believe it can and does. So let's talk about Fan Hate, what it is and how to push back with love! (Oh boy, I sound like a motivational poster or something.)


First, Fan Hate often flows from Hatedoms. Essentially, the number of fans who despise something grows enough to coalesce into a faction which attempts to purge all who disagree with them through a combination of constant complaints and sheer vitriol. Have you ever had the experience, as I have, of a Sub Elite responding to your "I love this dub" comment with "you're a racist because you don't watch in Japanese?" This is the kind of insanity that I think of as Fan Hate. It's nonsensical and extreme.

TV Tropes has a nice list of specific forms of Fan Hate and irrational stupidity here. Read it and then go on a forum, try to catch all the types! Fun for fans of all ages, flame protection recommended. (No, seriously, read that list.)

For those who don't won't to read the list, I'll quickly go through a few favorites from it. One type of Fan Hate I've seen a lot comes from the Anne Titlement type of fan. This fan complains about how their kind of shows aren't being made and another kind of show sucks because it's not what they like or want to see made. (Every moe fan should recognize this kind of fan.) The anime fandom is crawling with this variety of Fan Hate, which involves berating fans for being fans. A subset of this type of hater is The Barney Execution Squad. This is when a fan hates a show that clearly isn't intended for them at all! It makes little sense for a fan of serious seinen drama to rail against the evils of fluffy shoujo comedy right? Not all anime is intended for all anime fans.

On that note, Hentai is not for children so don't complain about tentacles being inappropriate for children under 3 to play with due to being a choking hazard. (Warning label joke or horrible statement? Discuss.)

Another Fan Hate spewer is The Willfully Blind: this group of fans refuse to recognize potential strengths of a work or anything positive about it. Fan Hate from this type will accentuate the negative beyond what might be considered rational, going as far as to outright ignore anything else in the anime. You might not recognize this kind of Fan Hate at first because sometimes the hater has a point. However, just because they hate the Tsundere female lead doesn't necessarily mean the show is all about women beating on weak men. Perhaps the series even directly addresses the very issues the blind hater is pissed about but they refuse to acknowledge it. The Willfully Blind can also be found dispensing Fan Love but the Fan Hate form tends to be tenacious and damaging to fandom. Expect this guy to show up frequently on threads and remind everyone how much he HATES THIS SHOW/GENRE/TROPE.

The most extreme form of Fan Hate comes from The Crusader. This fan hates something so much they actively seek to attack it at EVERY POSSIBLE OPPORTUNITY. These fans are obsessed and will point out why they hate something constantly, often derailing threads over it. A frequent result of this actor's efforts are Fan Hate heavy mini-flame wars that break out in threads that originally had little or nothing to do with the subject being vigorously debated. (A poster constantly mentioning how they hate something in most or all of the posts they make is prone to Fan Hate of this kind.)

The Fan Dumb in Fan Hate is nearly limitless. Having a divergent opinion in and of itself can trigger reprisals, even in a Fan Love heavy fandom. This is when consensus reality meets fandom in a horrible event called Fandom Heresy.

Anime fans consider certain aspects of fandom to be universal and you will get Fan Hate blasted if you disagree! Don't like Cowboy Bebop? Do you think Miyazaki is crap? Depending on the site, do you like English dubs, dislike fansubs or think lolicon hentai is free speech? (Okay, I admit, that last one is pushing it for most fandoms period but drawings [u]are not[/u] the same as pictures of real children.) If your opinion isn't the same as the majority, you might be in for a Fan Hate pile-up. The problem here comes from having an opinion that tends to be extremely rare period. Fans aren't too likely to hit this one, unless it's the classic and can we please stop fighting over it Sub vs. Dub debate.

Fan Hate can push new fans away, make old fans weary and just make the entire experience of joining a fandom more trouble than it's worth. I can honestly say that I got lucky and joined the anime fandom at just the right time and ended up feeling quite welcome. Nowadays, the Fan Hate is so severe and fans so focused on what's streaming now (legally or illegally) that I often wonder if I'd have even become a fan if I were getting into anime in recent times.

Fan Hate punishes anime fans for being fans. It makes a fan, who may already feel unwelcome in other fandoms due to liking anime, feel even more unwelcome. Fan Hate is unnecessary too. A negative opinion doesn't have to be cruel or hateful!

Example, a Dub Fan posts "I really loved Haruhi's VA! Wendee Lee was just great!"

Reactions: -Sub Fan: "Actually I prefer the Japanese seiyu Aya Hirano over Wendee Lee. Haruhi's just a cool girl in any language though."
-Sub Elite: "Wendee Lee sucks, she can't act at all. No dubber can. Aya Hirano rules!"
-Crusader: "Moe blog Mikuru ruins the show. I hate moe. I want it banned."
-Anne Titlement: "Why couldn't Kyoto Animation have made more Full Metal Panic instead of that crap show!"
-The Willfully Blind: "That Haruhi show is terrible! The episodes are out of order! That's just stupid."

One of these reactions is negative but not an example of Fan Hate. Pretty obvious right?

Fan Hate can have beneficial effects when it's toned down a notch or three. It can encourage variety in a fandom and it can help people avoid shows they wouldn't like anyway, though due to The Willfully Blind and people complaining about shows they don't watch that can also backfire. Fan Hate can discourage some of fandoms negative aspects by constantly reminding fans to avoid sterotypical/bad behaviors and to think outside the genre. Still, Fan Hate tends to be a destructive force that makes new fans feel unwelcome and old fans cynical.

Counter Fan Hate with Fan Love! Don't be afraid to gush about a series you love and try to be polite and inviting with all fans, especially new ones. Treat questions and comments with respect, even if you disagree. Remember, having a different opinion doesn't make the other person wrong, it just makes them different. (Yes, even if you really can't grasp how they can feel that way.)

Fan Love builds the fandom and Fan Hate tears it down. Remember and go in peace.


Friday, April 23, 2010

23 + 13 = Dub Sniper.

After a long week of cleaning, hauling garbage, moving furniture and suffering a few pulled muscles, another exciting and fat-free addition of Blog of a Heretical Dub Lover is here! (We apologize for the wait on a previously mentioned planned segment. Please join me Sunday, April 25th for Fan Love vs. Fan Hate.) I'm Richard J., navigator for the blog and sole writing talent. (Any use of plurals such as "we" is solely for a cheap effect.)

Anyway, after returning home today from a long clean-up and having a lovely dinner with my family, I found out that Section 23 had licensed the Golgo 13 TV series! In the past, their licenses meant little to me but this one adds another planned dub to their short (but growing!) list of bilingual releases!


Golgo 13 is a 50 episode series from 2008-2009 and the first set will appear at fine online retailers (and perhaps by divine grace at Best Buy and other brick and mortar stores) in July, meaning that this deal has likely been in the works for a while and production may very well be under way already. Plus as a bonus there's no mention of outside partners from the info I've read, suggesting this is Section23's baby all the way.

The series has clear appeal beyond the average anime fan as well, giving this license and release a distinct chance of actually kicking butt in sales. The series is about an assassin for the love of cookies! People LOVE stories about assassins! I mean just look at how many movies, video games and books there are about them. I expect Duke "Golgo 13" Togo, the assassin lead, to do well over here. (Heck the manga's been in circulation since 1968 with 156 volumes so far in Japan and VIZ has started putting it out over here with 13 volumes out.)

All that's really left to do is settle on the marketing methodology. (I'd highly recommend trying for a TV deal with this one.) Oh and give us a really sweet cast!


Crap. He'll wipe out the Texas VA pool by tomorrow. ;)

One way or another, I think this is a good move by Section23 and while my money issues are slowly (very slowly) working themselves out, I've been hearing about Golgo 13 for years and am interested in the anime. My family's legal/financial issues are continuing to threaten everything but I'm increasingly confident that this nightmare will end happily and the problems caused by one jackass con artist will end well. (Too bad I can't hire this guy to take care of the problem for me!)


Saturday, April 17, 2010

Gurren To the Movies

Back early by follower request! I'm your navigator Richard J., once more bringing you commentary on English dub news, personal interests and the occasional bout of insanity. Today, I'd like to talk about Aniplex's plans to bring out the Gurren Lagann movies. (In case the one who asked me to talk about this wishes to remain anonymous, I'll leave out names.)

Normally, I don't care about compilation/re-telling movies for anime series and, in general, I ignore their release. However, this deal has implications that go far beyond these movies and WILL affect at least 5 more shows. Add to that a request from a fan, how can I possibly not talk about this deal?


Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann was not as big a seller in the US/R1 as it could have been, largely due to Bandai Entertainment's rather complicated release structure. The multiple SKU releases, beginning with sub-only sets followed by both regular and special edition hybrid DVDs, actually triggered a backlash against Bandai and anime in general from Best Buy. Shortly after, anime shelf space was diminished. This is not a mere coincidence.

This loss of shelf space added to the decline from previous losses due to Musicland's bankruptcy. Anime in brick and mortar stores keeps declining and with it, the overall industry here suffers. This is ignored by fans who insist despite evidence to the contrary that online sales will make everything up. Well, we're about to see how wrong that is. Aniplex has entered into an exclusive deal with Bandai to sell Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann: Guren-hen and Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann: Ragan-hen on their new online store. Apparently, the previous test with Kannagi worked out for them. (Yes, I think it's clear that was a test and not a new business model for Bandai Entertainment itself.)

The Aniplex viewpoint on all of this boils down to wanting to hit the fans fast and hard to get as much money as possible. Note the MSRPs for these movies, they are what you'd normally expect to pay for hybrid release singles, the LEs are the price of a boxset. You can buy the first season of Strike Witches off Right Stuf for about the same price, less if the discount isn't as good with Bandai's site. According to Chris Beveridge, this isn't going over great with fans, especially dub fans. Some fans are happy about this, primarily R2 importers but they are not representative of the R1 anime consumer base.

Chris cites several important factors that are wrong with this exclusive deal, like how fans prefer to buy from a select few retailers (and Bandai's site is brand new, meaning it has no established customer base, remember that) as well as pointing out that site discounts can be smaller and shipping rates higher, plus you can't combine other shows you want with the order. To quote Mr. Beveridge: "it's very discouraging to be a fan (and even more so if you're a dub fan)"

Read that article, it's quite good and points out a lot of flaws in the Japanese approaches to the recent crisis in the anime industry. Also, he thinks this deal with Aniplex will only result in a couple hundred units sold directly to fans and seems to have doubts as to it's legitimacy as a business model. (Ooh, bet that'll PO some folks.)

Also, keep in mind this quote from the Executive Vice President for Aniplex's International Business Development Group, Hideki Goto:

Of course, it is ideal to make an English dub. However, there is also a trend that fans want to see new titles as fast as possible. Making an English dub takes a long time and costs a lot, so we may miss the release timing for future releases. If a title has a chance for TV broadcasting, it is possible to create an English dub, however, we don't plan to make a dub version and release it later.
Translation: "English dubs take too long and sub fans want everything right now so screw you dub fans! Unless you watch TV."

Do I even have to point out how few anime go on TV nowadays? Does that change the fact that a sizable portion of the anime consumer base prefers English dubs? No to both questions, you already know this line of thought is flawed. Aniplex is saying no to dubbing to satisfy the "we want it now!" crowd, who by all accounts want digital downloads, not DVDs to begin with!

The real goal is clearly to transition to a direct market approach where the Japanese companies just slap subs on their existing product and sell that to fans. What makes this deal so insulting is that if the Japanese hadn't been making it so expensive to license all those extras to begin with, maybe the market would be in better shape. For years, fans have been complaining about how the R1 release lacked features from the R2s. The English dub and sometimes English commentary was the primary value-added feature for releases over here and now that's being phased out in favor of Japanese release plus subs. (The prices will go up too as the Japanese consumer base continues to decline. Bandai Visual will live again!)

What can we fans do about the Gurren Lagann movies and the five shows that will come after them? Right now, not much because this is a situation in which the companies just can't grasp a basic truth: English dubs are important even without a TV broadcast. The Japanese are focused on hardcore fans right now and, in the process, are losing fans both here and in Japan. Gurren Lagann didn't do as well as it could have in mainstream release but it did far better than it will getting the niche treatment. Five more shows will follow and suffer because of failed logic. There's a recession going on, people are out of work and anime is being sold at far fewer places. The anime bubble burst because of declining shelf-space and the beginnings of the economic downfall combined with outrageous license fees. Unfortunately, the current round of experimentation to keep sales high while everyone's wallet's are empty seems hell bent on achieving this goal:


I predict that Bandai and Aniplex will not find this working out as well as they think it will. I hope English dubs will appear in the future but Aniplex at least seems mostly unconcerned about them. The prestige of anime is fading but there is hope, once the economy rights itself. (Of course, given the current talk of VATs and jacking up our electric bills, that may never happen.)

As an English dub fan, I am willing to fight this problem. I will support any company's plan to dub what was not dubbed before, such as Media Blaster's plans with Dokuro-chan and other titles. I'm not a big booster for MB, certainly not a fanboy as I've been accused of being for Funimation (meh, it fits more or less) but they've really earned my support recently. And, amazingly, despite a price drop that scared the crap out of me, Kanokon will not be losing its English dub! (Thanks bal-anime for letting me know about that. I didn't ignore your PM, I just wasn't sure how to fit in a mention here until now.) Buying series that were previously sub-only after they get an English dub is a great way to encourage companies to keep English dubs alive.

However, just buying newly-dubbed re-releases may not be enough. I want to help series and OVAs that are unlikely to ever get an English dub. I want to see anime get licensed that would never be licensed without special support. I want to promote anime in general and improve the public image of anime. (Not that anything can help some idiots to get why anime rocks.) There's something I want to try but I won't be able to do it for a while due to lack of money. However, though it may take a few years to implement:

For now, no dubs for Aniplex's series that aren't on TV or licensed by other, more dub fan-friendly companies. Send out an E-mail, talk about it on forums, be prepared to deal with sub-elite but don't attack normal sub fans for just being happy about the releases. Fight on.

We can win. Never forget that your individual contribution REALLY DOES COUNT!


Thursday, April 15, 2010

Bandai Denies Death! Cites Movie Deal!

Welcome fellow anime fiends to another slightly more exciting than professional paint watching episode of Blog of a Heretical Dub Lover! It's been a bit since last we met hasn't it? Off-line life has seen me put to work at sundry necessary tasks while falling into slight depression. We apologize for the lack of blogging.


With that apology out of the way, let us talk about the latest from the anime grapevine that concerns dubbing or that I care about. Bandai Entertainment USA, which isn't exactly king of the hill lately, answers the concerns of its fans by licensing a film of minor importance. (And by minor, I mean FREAKING AWESOME!)


Yes, they've gone and licensed The Disappearance of Haruhi Suzumiya! (Guess we're not using Vanishment huh? Despite the fact it's a real word? Despite it likely being YET ANOTHER math reference, which are legion in Haruhi land? Oh well.)

Anyway, this movie is one of those "knew it was coming but still excited" deals for me. Honestly, I never doubted they'd pick it up once they got the second season. (Now that, I worried about.) And it appears that there will be a dub for it too. At least, that's how I interpret the whole Bang Zoom! Entertainment will co-produce an English language version thing. Given the apparent level of success this series has achieved and Bandai's OBVIOUS belief in it, since they are dubbing the second season with the original English cast, I'd be shocked if the movie didn't get a dub.

Seriously, a lack of English dubbing for this movie would be like saying "fans, we know you want this movie more than anything else, so we decided to screw over a bunch of you for giggles."

The movie gets a dub. Deal with it sub-elite. (Regular sub fans rejoice along with dub fans, for we shall all reap this bounty of delicious Haruhi fun!)

Bandai also announced the start of an online store. This says two things to me: 1) they're considering even more direct-to-consumer marketing and 2) they're trying real hard not to die. The store is heavy on the new and popular (makes sense) as well as some Japanese imports. We'll see if it grows or fails.

I personally hope they put any old stock that's Out-Of-Print on there. Some of their shows are insanely hard to find discs of at sane prices.

Moving on, Funimation announced that they've got a deal with Fuji Television in Japan to simulcast shows now. They talk about it on their blog a bit too.

The first episode of one of the new licenses, House of Five Leaves, is already streaming on Funimation's website, YouTube, and Hulu. Ooh, linkies.


Despite looking like horror samurai fun, this series sounds a bit more slice-of-life-ish in the synopsis on ANN. A timid ronin named Akitsu Masanosuke joins a charismatic guy as a bodyguard and hangs with his quirky group of bandits. If nothing else, it sounds very different and very not-moe. Personally, I hope its mere existence will convince some anime fans to chill out and stop constantly blubbering about how "all anime is moe and sucks now!" and "this season is the worst season ever!"

Really, does all of that doom-saying and bad-mouthing accomplish anything except making fans who LIKE the shows being slammed feel unwelcome in the fanbase? (And if those fans are new fans or fans who buy a lot, could not the negativity adversely affect the financial future of anime? More on my views of that early next week!)

Also up for simulcast is The Tatami Galaxy, another unusual show with a funky art style.


Seriously, these are some different looking shows coming out lately. I'm intrigued by the style alone with these two series. Synopsis of the anime is laking but according to the article, it's based on a novel about a nameless protagonist in his third year of college who is looking back at his early years and his adventures with a circle (that's a club/organization/thing) which involve. . . something that will hopefully interest anime fans!

Setting aside my warped sense of humor, this deal seems quite interesting. It goes beyond these two series. I don't know the nitty-gritty details but Fuji TV isn't exactly a small time Japanese company and this deal comes after they just increased the length of their Noitamina block. With at least five series planned to air this year alone, that's a lot of simulcasting for Funimation. Here's an important comment from the press release:

“This is a fantastic opportunity to work again with the formidable Fuji TV,” said Gen Fukunaga, president and CEO at FUNimation Entertainment, “particularly on the debut of a new Noitamina lineup. This highly-rated block has already launched hits like ‘Eden of The East’ and 'Tokyo Magnitude 8.0' and we hope to extend that success for these new series in the U.S.”

That comment says something. It says "expect us to license some or all of these shows." So, if Funimation keeps with current business models, that means DVDs (maybe Blu-Rays) and English dubs will be had. However, this increase in simulcasting also suggests that it will be used as a means to cherry pick. They can't dub and DVD/Blu-Ray everything they simulcast right?

I sense a disturbance in the dub force approaching. Then again, all of these series are SHORT too and that could actually benefit hybrid releases and make them more affordable. (The basic pattern is, first set sells best and all the rest decline in sales.) It's even possible that fans will shift to watching these legal simulcasts, thus increasing the number of fans orientated toward lawful consumerism. Hopefully these simulcasts will benefit all anime fans and not just sub-fans.

Now before I go, let me ask a question that's really started to bug me.

Why hasn't anyone licensed A Certain Magical Index or A Certain Scientific Railgun?

Take a look at this girl:


Seen her before? I have. Her name is Mikoto Misaka, a character in both series, and I've seen avatars of her, fan art and official art all over. Even on non-anime sites. I've seen fans talking about the two shows a fair bit and both series are pretty successful in Japan with bonus episodes popping up on their DVDs. They've got manga, light novels and the hentai artists are drawing Mikoto and her friends when they get tired of drawing K-On! girls. (Um, not that I look at a lot of hentai.)

My point, the two series seem to have legs. Along with the aforementioned K-On! and it's sequel, A Certain Magical Index and A Certain Scientific Railgun seem to be pretty darn popular and both sound like they'd be successful over here. While I'm more than willing to embrace some of the recent licenses that have popped up from all R1 parties, I'm ever more puzzled by the lack of these licenses.

I know the anime industry here is hurting due to the economy going bad and the increased corporate taxes (not to mention property, utility and other taxes that we all suffer through) but are these series really that hard to get at the right price? I mean, am I crazy or shouldn't these have been licensed by now?

Anyway, that's it for this edition of Blog of a Heretical Dub Lover! I've gotten more followers and I owe all of you more posts, so look forward to more content soon. Perhaps even a crappy web-comic since everyone seems to have one nowadays.



Oh dear. Kyon, you'd better make sure she gets a part in the dubbing!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Strike Witches Review Up On ANN!

Hello all of you out there who read my poorly written and not-updated-enough blog! Some of you already know this but awhile back, I was given the chance to write an official review for ANN (that's for anyone who somehow has never heard of them.) That review is now up! Yippee-ki-yay, John McClane!


Here's a direct link to my review!

The experience of getting to write a review for an official and respectable source like this was great. I learned several things, like how you really shouldn't bug your editor when he's working and that I tend to repeat words and have some other issues. (I'll try to work on them and hopefully none of you have suffered too much from my blathering here. ;) )

I have no idea if I'll ever get to do something like this again. I'm not expecting to but I'd say yes without hesitation if asked. (I'd beg to do more but I'm not sure how effective that would be.)

Anyway, just making a mention since several of you encouraged me previously about this!

To think this is all because of some forum bluster on my part and probably some sort of pity on Zac's part. So this is all because I use the Internet!


The Internet works in mysterious ways. Does that make it God?

Nah, probably not, but it is awesome that I got to do this. (Now I'd better stop writing before I start developing Swollen Head Explosive Syndrome.)

Next post will be much more serious.


Friday, April 2, 2010

Of Dubs and Men

Hello all of my 11 followers! Are you doing well? Are you happy? Are you bored?

Are you still out there reading my ramblings? Please say yes, you're support is all that keeps me alive. (Okay, respirating a mix of O2, N2 and other gases plus regular caloric intake keeps me alive but your support makes mere survival enjoyable.

Anyway, I'm here to blather yet again about some great news in the English dub world and to let you know my thoughts on what is going on.

First, lets have a yippie for VIZ getting Kekkaishi on to Adult Swim!



Yeah, funny how Adult Swim was all "we're getting rid of anime!" a while back and now they're all "dudez, we's gots some animuz fur yer!" Perhaps they found out that anime fans, while not giving them quite the ratings they wanted, are critical to the late night programming succeeding? Who knows, who cares, more anime on TV is ALWAYS A GOOD THING!

Some exceptions may apply, void where 4Kids is applicable.

Let us also rejoice at Funimation licensing Black Butler!


Gee, that doesn't quite look like my kind of show but it could be awesome. Many expect the dub to cast Brina Palencia as Ciel. Apparently they wish to conveniently ignore the existence of Maxey Whitehead! Defy expectations in dubbing!

Anyway, lets talk about some fully confirmed English dub casts!

Do you remember that Bandai licensed the second season of Haruhi? Did you know there was great uncertainty about the English dub cast? Well, that's been cleared up and we now know that the original English cast is back to show us the awesome again!


In case you don't like to click links, here's the cast that's been confirmed:

Haruhi Suzumiya: Wendee Lee
Mikuru Asahina: Stephanie Sheh
Yuki Nagato: Michelle Ruff
Kyon: Crispin Freeman
Itsuki Koizumi: Johnny Yong Bosch


Sorry Asakura, you're going to have to wait a bit. Who knows, maybe you'll get to be in a future dub?

In that same ANN article, Vampire Knight's main English dub cast was presented!


Perennial fan favorite Vic Mignogna, the lovely Mela Lee and rarely heard but often loved Ethan Murray join together in a cast that has left many fans saying "what the heck?" A few in a good way, many in a negative way but then poor Vic seems to have a personal hatedom to go with his fangirls. (He has lots more fangirls than haters though so he probably doesn't care too much.)

I haven't seen Vampire Knight so I don't know if the casting works or is horrible but personally, I like all three of these VAs. I'm eager to give this dub a listen. (Assuming I can buy the DVDs down the road.)

Still, VIZ is being much more creative with its English dubs lately. That should be praised considering how much some fans complain about "assembly line dubs" and such.

Last but far from least, let's talk about the Clannad dub!


Awesome! I've been unable to fully watch the first episode in English due to Section23's Anime Network hating my computer. (My computer seems to be hated by many streaming sites. I think it has to do with my local ISP sucking and being on an over-burdened line.) However, there are some great clips of the English dub online at YouTube and they've given me a chance to enjoy the show a bit.

I will have this one even if I have to eat dust and misery for a month to afford it! Here's the cast!

Tomoya Okazaki: David Matranga
Nagisa Furukawa: Luci Christian
Kyou Fujibayashi: Shelley Calene-Black
Botan: Melissa Davis
Ryou Fujibayashi: Brittney Karbowski
Tomoyo Sakagami: Kaytha Coker
Kotomi Ichinose: Emily Neves
Fuko Ibuki: Hilary Haag
Youhei Sunohara: Greg Ayres
Mei Sunohara: Serena Varghese
Akio Furukawa: Andrew Love
Sanae Furukawa: Kara Greenberg
Voice of "I": Shannon Emerick
Girl: Melissa Davis
Yukine Miyazawa: Maggie Flecknoe
Misae Sagara: Elizabeth Bunch
Naoyuki Okazaki: Chris Hutchison
Kouko Ibuki: Stephanie Wittels
Yusuke Yoshino: Illich Guardiola
Junior Male (from Ep 24): Josh Grelle

That's a very nice cast. Especially awesome choice for Fuko. I love Hilary Haag's voice so much. I've really missed her.

Plus the character I've been the most curious about in this show is Fuko due to the whole "loves starfish" thing.

I find the oddest things interesting in series huh?

Well, that's all there is for me to talk about today. Hopefully, I won't be venting my spleen any time soon about negative or unhappy things. Currently I'm waiting to learn more about several situations before raging and working on a few reviews, maybe even an "official" one. (Now if Zac will just get back to me.)

I'll post again soon! In the mean time, check out the new English dubs hitting the market, keep loving what you love and never forget that you are a human being who deserves respect! Never accept flak from the haters!

And no matter how much you love English dubs, don't pretend you can get people into them.


Trust me, this can not turn out well.