Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Anime World Order Show # 56 - Mephisto Gives Birth to a Hard-On, Busters

Everything this week causes pain one way or another as Daryl reviews Demon City Shinjuku, Clarissa reviews Birth / Planet Busters, and Gerald wraps things up with Megazone 23 III.

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Introduction (00:00 - 32:38)
This week we get a letter from the vice chair of the Providence Anime Conference, who informs us that while they are not looking for staff now, they will be in the near future. All of us at Anime World Order hope that this event DOES NOT turn into some horrible "adult sci-fi" convention, many of which feature such panel topics as "Polyamory," "Bondage or S&M," "Filking," and other horrible things like the "18+ Costume Contest." We'll keep our hopes up. We also address the question of TV anime censorship and the different ways it's handled (see TOTALLY work safe picture below).

Finally, we talk about the possibility of showing anime in theaters and the issues with that. Apparently, buying that $8.00 popcorn can be pretty important.

Let's News! (32:39 - 44:20)
Megatokyo is NOT MANGA just because it's being published in Japan. That is all.
Zac Bertschy interviews Chase Wang, (did he seriously choose that as his English name?) and makes him answer the hard questions as to why things were so disorganized at Anime Expo this year. Starting a concert three hours late is fine, right? We also wonder why Viz had such a small presence at the convention and Del Rey was nowhere to be seen. Apparently, according to some new standards those filthy doujinshi authors will start having to put their names on their Card Captor Sakura loliporn works and label all the contents.

Promo: R5 Central (44:21 - 45:02)
Behold a preview of the R5 Central Otakon episodes to come. That dastardly Mike Dent is the only one who got a bumper recording out of Tomokazu Seki, and as a result we don't have one. This shall not be forgotten. No, it shall not.

Review: Demon City Shinjuku (45:03 - 1:21:52)
An OAV that's very familiar to anyone who used to watch Saturday Anime on the Sci-Fi Channel in the 90's...OH GOD, MEMORIES OF APOLLO SMILE FLOODING BACK! "Live Action Anime Girl" my ass! The plot to this anime is not only completely unimportant, it's also nearly 20 years old. As a result, Daryl goes through the entire show (to Gerald's silent disapproval for SPOILING IT ALL) since the only REAL reason to watch this cartoon is for the action scenes. Also, its laughably bad dub in which British people try to convince us that they can pull off every accent under the sun. Listen and find out for yourself what happens when you mix spirits with sulfuric acid. Certified 100% Johnny Mnemonic approved, and we're talking about the Region 2 version with even more Beat Takeshi. Pictures forthcoming, but for now I WANT ROOM SERVICE!

Promo: Otaku USA Magazine (1:21:53 - 1:44:06)
Just a reminder that Issue 2 should be arriving in stores soon and that you need to not only buy the magazine and read it, but post on their terrifying messageboard proclaiming the absolute superiority of the articles WE wrote over everyone else's. Bwa ha ha ha ha ha.

Review: Megazone 23 The Third, Part 1 and Part 2 (1:22:47 - 1:44:06)
Gerald takes a look at a show that does a fine job of beating a classic franchise to the ground, ensuring it can never arise again. The less said about that Playstation 3 videogame of this coming out really soon, the better. Megazone 23 The Third proves that even after 1,000 years, it's still possible for an idol singer to be on the top of the charts. Below are the spectacular videos we were talking about that are sure to give you a Hard-On:

And:


Promo: Otaku Generation (1:44:07 - 1:44:47)
Dismayed over the fact that episodes of AWO are now somehow longer than Otaku Generation episodes, Daryl and Gerald invaded their show last week to guarantee that it was the longest recorded episode they'd done to date. Alan had to stay up until about 2 AM editing it down to an acceptable length. WELCOME TO OUR WORLD!

Review: Birth aka Planet Busters (1:44:48 - 2:09:09)
Another "classic" from the Streamline Pictures catalog of work that was re-released and re-dubbed by ADV Films. Clarissa tries her best to make sense out of this madness, but we're talking about a cartoon that somehow manages to make chase sequences involving killer robots that are the size of planets boring. Max from Jacksonville provides us with another voicemail, and it's far more exciting than the anime itself. Don't let anyone try and tell you otherwise.

Closing (2:09:10 - 2:15:55)
Prepare yourselves. If you thought this week we talked about some terrifying things, next week's vast collection of total suck might prove second only to Uwe Boll's filmography. Daryl will be giving us justice or a b-[CLASSIFIED TOP SECRET] by reviewing the six-part OAV series Angel Cop. You won't find more lovingly crafted optic nerves anywhere else. Clarissa will be taking a look at a show that is AWESOME and features a man whose superhuman power is being incredibly rich. No, not Batman (face it, "unlimited money" is Batman's REAL super power). No, not Iron Man either. She will be reviewing the first six episodes of "Naikaku Kenryoku Hanzai Kyosei Torishimarikan Zaizen Jotaro" or Zaizen Jotaro for short. Why just the first six, even though this show's from about a year ago? Well, that's all that got fansubbed, but after this review you all need to contact the responsible parties, perhaps via IRC, and DEMAND the rest. Trust us, it'll be DA BOMB! Finally, Gerald is given the Herculean task of getting through one of the most unforgivingly bad shows released in the 1980's, a one-shot OAV that was released purely to cash in on Hajime Sorayama's Sexy Robots (I TRIPLE DOG DARE you to check out that site while at work), The Humanoid.

Also, everyone who submitted entries for the "name your favorite anime" contest who didn't A.) give us clear reasons WHY that particular show was your favorite and B.) DIDN'T GIVE US YOUR GOD DAMN ADDRESS will have to resubmit their entry. Any and all entries that do not include these things will be deleted because it's taking too much time for us to email everyone back and say "hey, you forgot to do this right."


72 comments:

Thomas P said...

*obligatory OMG new AWO post*

The concept of anime showing in theaters works in limited amounts and only in limited engagements. I can't remember any anime (Pokemon excluded) besides maybe, maybe Spirited Away that had a moderately successful theatrical run. I still think that the market is too small and the vast majority of the anime watching public today doesn't care about anything beyond the Bleachs and Narutos of the world. Maybe it'd work during a midnight showing, but only in limited engagements.

Then again, you made all of my points while I was listening to this..... shit.

Area88 said...

Wow an 80's fest!

I'm doing the same over at Classic Anime Reviews - http://classicanimereviews.blogspot.com/

Daryl Surat said...

Were it not for the fact that you made available the Gaga reel which I had wanted a complete copy of for decades, I would find myself rather annoyed at your blatant blog spamming, especially since this is the SECOND time you've done it. It's one thing to oh, say, actually contribute some sort of worthwhile comment and then plug your blog at the end, but just posting HEY GUYS CHECK OUT MY WEBSITE and nothing else? Doesn't exactly inspire people to head over.

Area88 said...

Sorry dayrl, i didn't mean to spam/annoy you, i was geting over excited with exposure. Don't worry I won't post my link anymore.

I'm just upset you guys ripped into Birth. I am counter reviewing this in my blog because i don't think you guys listed any positives.

Brack said...

A couple of those "British" people on the Demon City Shinjuku dub were actually Americans/Canadians who lived and work in the UK. Bob Sessions (Levih Rah) was American and Brad Lavelle (Kyoya Izayoi) was Canadian to the best of my knowledge.

The rest were British actors, including Gareth Armstrong, who worked on the infamous Monkey dub in the 70s. Michael Bakewell, who directed that Monkey dub, did a lot of the UK dubs from this time, including Demon City Shinjuku.

TJ said...

Just hearing that you will be reviewing Angel Cop on the next show has made my entire day. I can't thank you enough!

But seriously, I didn't think that you could get any more terrifying than this episode. I was wrong. Between Angel Cop and The Humanoid, that's an infinite amount of terror in one episode of AWO.

Area88 said...

Oh come on, the Humnoid has it's qualities - what about the catchy soundtrack or the pretty character designs?

Sure the story is kind of simple and linear but it's all entertainment at the same time.

I can't help but feel AWO are being overly critical for the sake of being a critic.

Daryl Surat said...

In case anyone couldn't infer it from the review, you want to watch Demon City Shinjuku in the original Japanese unless you enjoy the dub for purely nostalgic reasons like I do. Upon further consideration, it makes perfect sense that the lead hero and villain in the Demon City Shinjuku dub weren't British at all, since the only real comment we had regarding Kyouya's dub actor was that he sounded incredibly bored and flat, which is par for the course for most of those Canadian dub actors.

I'd reiterate my wish for anime studios to stop hiring The Ocean Group and its offshoots to do their dubs, but apparently all that results is that instead of going to somewhere like Animaze, they go to Hong Kong and hire people who don't natively speak English. How silly of me to presume that practice would die out in the 80s.

I'm just upset you guys ripped into Birth...The Humanoid has it's qualities...I can't help but feel AWO are being overly critical for the sake of being a critic.

The court record will show that you also strongly defend Odin, MD Geist, Outlanders, Roots Search, and every single craptacular thing from the 1980s on the grounds that "all anime sucks now compared to the 1980s, when all anime ever made was good." You're half the inspiration for Cogswell Pepperbox, and anyone who thinks that I am the one who's hating stuff solely for the sake of doing so is encouraged to read your posts in this thread on Anime Jump. And before you start typing up that comment reply to state how wrong I am to declare that Fantastic Adventures of Yoko Leda is only slightly less painfully generic and terrible than Fandora, remember: you have your own blog now which you can use instead!

Onto matters of grave importance: we'll try and get those Megazone 23 III videos posted up somewhere before the end of the day.

Thomas P said...

Is Viz still tossing every show they've got to the Ocean Group?

The Last Otaku said...

APOCALYPSE ZERO DARYL!!!! I mean, I like Angel Cop but AZ is totally better in how awesome/bad it is. Plus it has a great shock factor that can seriously disturb people.

Anonymous said...

Hi AWO,

I haven't seen any of the anime reviewed in this episode, but I remember the comment that Clarissa made about the soundtrack to "Birth," made by Jo Hisaishi. I share the same sentiments towards his work on Arion (which I searched for based on Gerald's suggestions a few episodes ago). Hisaishi did the soundtrack for that, and while it had its moments, somewhere in the last 20 minutes, it kinda lost steam - though I guess that's true for the film as well, even though I really enjoyed watching it for the animation, and character moments here and there which kept me hooked by Yasuhiko's beautiful designs.

And while I love the critique's of bad anime that you do, I have to say that I loved your reviews of really good work like "Giant Robo" and "Do You Remember Love?" Perhaps you may try to squeeze some more good hearted earnestness amidst the cynicism?

Either way, I'm loving it all. Thanks for another great episode.

Régis

nckl said...

Firstly, another great show with lots of laughs. Great job yet again.

Secondly, regarding Angel Cop, I remember watching the dub streamed on the internet (legally) a while back (during the tech boom I think) and I do remember a ton of swearing. Was that another dub where they added a ton of swearing to make it "edgy"?

Thirdly, you guys ever heard of "Sword For Truth" ? I remember watching years ago, and it was really bad. I suggest reviewing that one. If you have no idea what it is, here is one person's review to give you a taste of what it's about:
http://animeworld.com/reviews/swordfortruth.html

Gilles Poitras said...

Shit!

Now I don't know what I am going to watch tonight,

Megazone 23 The Third or Demon City Shinjuku.

Screw it I may slap on Angel Cop.

Or I may do the dishes instead.

TJ said...

For God's sake, do the dishes! Don't get sucked in to the world of the evil world of Angel Cop; I made that mistake long ago, and...it raped my mind.

Anyway, I forgot to comment about something you said. About the use of the letter x in anime titles, I completely agree with you that it's infuriating. There seriously needs to be a government agency that sets some sort standard for the sound that particular letter makes. How is anyone supposed to know whether it's silent or not?

OK, I'll stop now...

Heidi said...

Oh goddammit you're doing ANGEL COP next time? You assholes, you're deliberately making the wait as long and excruciating as possible by announcing a critique of said modern masterpiece!

Also, re: the doujinshi, the authors don't have to list their real names in the book, just a circle/pen name and an address. It's not much different from what most circles already do.

Carl Horn said...

Listener notes:

(whiny voice) Yeah, Gerald, the tickling was in Episode 1 of the original 1971 Lupin series also called the green coat series but it's really the blue coat series everyone knows that and it was when she was captured by the evil organization Scorpion only they spelled it "Scopion" in the episode and...

My favorite overdubs of profanity are from the broadcast TV version of SCARFACE: "How'd you get that scar--eatin' pineapple?" "This town is like a chicken, waitin' to be plucked."

The censorship of bad language in ero manga seems a little bizarre, but, Japan, you know. Although not quite a porno, DANCE 'TIL TOMORROW as it ran in PULP was actually uncensored compared to the original in this regard; Freddy's constant refrain of "Pussy!" was "ma(X)ko" in the original.

Although there are a lot of industry premieres, it's certainly not the case that there aren't any fan panels (that is, talking about themes and issues fans like to talk about) at the San Diego Comic-Con, although the panelists themselves might be people who work in the industry. I mean, for example, on Thursday evening, it's Otaku USA, vox Dei, with:

"6:00-7:00 100 Manga Magazines in 60 Minutes— In Japan, manga is published in massive weekly, biweekly, and monthly manga magazinesthat fit every imaginable category: shojo to shonen, science fiction to horror, moe to yaoi, children's to adult. Jason Thompson (Manga: The Complete Guide) provides a visual tour of the manga world, its industry secrets, and future trends. Room 4."

"A lot of people looking for 'teen fisting'."

"Never bring a wooden stick to a laser beam fight."

"Oh, shit--now I've thrown my wooden stick at you. And I have no stick."

"Since it's a girl's ring, it doesn't do anything."

I remember on the British dub of PATLABOR: THE MOVIE, the problem wasn't so much the American accents but ignorance of our vocabulary, so you'd end up with some supposed redneck maintenance man saying things like "Well, ah reckon it'd take 'bout a fortnight t' git it runnin'!"

(I liked the original--i.e., British--dub of PATLABOR 2 better than the more recent one, however).

About Chibi, it occurred to me that only a Florida podcast such as yourselves can successfully judge both Southern and Cuban accents. In my opinion, there actually aren't *enough* Tony Montana imitations in anime dubbing. In particular I want to hear Zoro say, "I kill a Communist for fun, but for a green card, I cut him up real nice."

(back to whiny voice) Um, excuse me? It was not *Yui* who was trying to become the pop singer in MEGAZONE TWO THREE, it was *Mai,* okay?

"And no one suspects that mmm, maybe Eve is not an actual human being. Maybe she's just like Dick Clark."

"I know--he ordered a parfait, too." Parfaits were very popular in Japan at the time, almost emblematic. If you went to SF's Japantown in the mid-to-late 80s through early 90s, you'd have a parfait, the way otaku today would have Pocky.

I have the storybook of BIRTH (of which the anime is apparently an adaptation, as the book is dated 1982). In hardcover. Autographed by Yoshinori Kanada. Oh, yeah, and also the THE ANIME guidebook to same, which contains photos of otaku lining up for the premiere, and its three promotional "image gals" dressed in BIRTH T-shirts over leotards, a look later made more famous in GUNBUSTER. They had the honesty to also print a photo of the audience afterwards, obviously bored and dubious.

'Why do things like this get released, but we still don't have ONIISAMA E?"

--Carl

kransom said...

Oh god, you have no idea how much I am awaiting your review of Zaizen Jotaro. It had best be (SNAP) DA BOMB.

Also, you're all showing up at AFO, right? Right?

Behonkiss said...

I found a video of the ending to Birth, and I can see why Clarissa doesn't get it, because I sure don't:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=95a4I7zUfT8

But the original English dub had the tagline "In space, no one can hear you laugh!", and I got a lighthearted/goofy feel from the review. This...is just weird and out of place.

kolibri said...

Re: anime @ theaters

I went to see the Naruto movie when it was showing here (in Canada). Everything you say is true - it was a digital copy (in the beginning there was this "please enter your authorization code" text - very professional, guys) and the screening time was outside of normal hours, in our case at 10am. But it was also almost full, and in our area our local con was helping to promote the screenings by arranging cosplay competitions. It was really nice actually, it really gave the whole thing a feeling of an event.

And it wasn't exactly normal movie experience either - in the beginning they had a short documentary about what Naruto is about, and in the end there was a longer (maybe 15 minute) making-of documentary with the voice actors. It looked pretty much like DVD extras, but they seemed to want to give all they could to the audiences.

Like you said, I think Viz was using this as testing ground to see if it was going to be viable to do this kind of stuff in the future. I would only assume that it was a success, and I'm sure we'll be seeing more in the future.

Colin said...

I can't believe I haven't seen Demon City Shinjuku, cause as I look to my left I see the majority of work made by Kawajiri thats available in english. I will quickly remedy this, off to Amazon!

I saw for the first time last night a movie that changed my life. Versus. That needs nothing afterwards.

Tim Eldred said...

Nice to hear the name Hiroyuki Kitazume finally spoken by someone other than myself! I've been both in love with and hatefully jealous of his character design skills since I first saw his work on Gundam ZZ, and watched in awe as he moved from there to an OAV called "Dead Heat," then Sha's Counterattack and of course everyone's favorite, Uratsuki (Overfiend) Doji. After that he spent a lot of time doing video jacket art for Z Gundam, ZZ Gundam, and Space Battleship Yamato, and numerous illos of Gundam characters for one thing or another. These days he's doing a manga for the monthly Gundam Ace magazine.

The jerky animation in the MZ23 clips is just key animation without the inbetweens, which happened often enough to be noticable in the waning days of the OAV. (You can see a lot of it in one of the Gal Force Earth Chapters, for example.) It could simply be that budgets and schedules were just crushing the life out of people and some scenes simply didn't make it across the finish line before the Yabba Dabba Doo whistle went off.

Anyway, if anyone wants to feast on more Kitazume, there's a 2004 book called "Characters of Gundam" that collects all of his major Gundam work between two covers. ISBN4-04-853662-1. Happy hunting!

Mara said...

I can assure you as Vice Chair of the Providence Anime Conference that there will be NO filk, NO klingons, no horrible polyamory panels or anything of that nature, and if I see any evidence of others trying to turn it into something other than an anime convention geared towards an older crowd, I will no longer be a part of that event. I promise you this.

Chris Sobieniak said...

So much to talk about!

-- Being reminded of having watched a Japanese comedy program where they did that odd censor thing of sticking the person's face over his crotch rather than the typical censor bar/blur/mosaic type effect. It just seem kinda amusing how they do censorship as opposed to the generic variation we see across the waters.

Of course, if censorship in anime was something like Family Guy, we'd be seeing a lot of goofy moments and often guys getting drawn in that "all class if you don't draw the dick" fashion. (as if people are that concern at seeing gender-neutrality in cartoon humans nowadays) :-)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dCPmLgdu_VU

-- The "digital distribution" route is a fairly new form of cinema entertainment, though it's still isn't implemented entirely across the nation. Being reminded the last film I saw was "Ratatouille", and I guess it was worth the extra $16 I spent on the Nathan's/Sbarro food that day I went (a matinee). I rarely eat popcorn much anymore and would rather eat something else if I'm at the movies. The only "digital" movie I've seen so far was the Disney Digital 3D presentation of "Meets the Robinsons".

Aside from contemplating anime getting released through digital means, I'm being reminded of something Jerry Beck talked about this when he mentioned a company that is offering animated movies through that fashion but are using a lot of direct-to-video productions that have yet to hit the shelves at Wal-Mart. He has a hard time whether to classify these releases or not in his "Animated Movie Guide" list of US theatrical releases, since they aren't being distributed in a fashion similar to how it has been done before.
http://www.cartoonresearch.com/feature.html

If anything, anime is in that section of the mainstream where it's in the middle. It's not in the underground "I'm into anime" thing like it was 15-20 years ago, nor is it important enough to be accepted as the uber entertainment of the masses without question. People still can't really accept animation seriously unless they don't become more open-minded to it. Amusingly, I noticed my mom left the TV on a couple mights back, and Showtime Beyond played that New Fist of the North Star overnight, though she probably wasn't paying attention to it.

I only wish there was a cinema in town close to me that would've showed Paprika and all that, since the only one that National Amusements could bother to use for that (along with third-run discount films) is down south, and a tad out of the way.

Kinda shocked Kodansha would be that interested in publishing Megatokyo at all.

-- Being reminded, I contribute to an APA where I have to spend my hard-earned change on xeroxing my own pages I submit quarterly.

-- Being reminded, a lot of CPM dubs like Demon City Shinjuku were part of some odd deal they made with whomever owned Manga Video in the UK at the time who also released the same dubs on tape there too. The original tapes of those dubs tend to look pretty degraded, possible due to having been conversions from a PAL source where the dubs had been made in. Still, at least it's better than trying to get these dubbed over in Asia like in HK (read someplace Fantastic Children was dubbed in Malaysia).

-- God those clips on YouTube were real bad (just like the Korean toons I stuck up there). Like noticing how the one character's color changes completely (whose working on this, monkeys).

In some way, it reminds me of how awful some American cartoons could be for similar reasons. Here, it's a case of getting the key drawings done, but skipping the inbetweeners and shooting it as-is. I want to think they forgot they had inbetweeners otherwise. :-)

Megazone 23 THE THIRD pt. 1 and 2 sounds completely lame and uninteresting from Gerald's review. It sounds more a case they probably should've saved their money and not go ahead on that bomb (if they couldn't get the original people in on it, why bother making up a new thing).

-- Having seen that ending and reading up about it, it appears there were a total of three dubs for "Birth". One was made by Harmony Gold in '87 called "The World of the Talisman", then there was Streamline Pictures version some years later, and ADV's now. The first English dub, though I don't assume it was ever seen/released here, got a children's home video release in the UK. Wonder how much better that one works around a plot the original didn't have much of.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_World_of_the_Talisman

Really, this VHS cover freaks me out!
http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/3/3e/World_of_talisman.jpg

Even more insipid, a Polish VHS cover!
http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/4/42/World_of_talisman_%28Pol%29.jpg

-- On and for Area88, thanks for giving the Gaga Communications tape some nice pimpage on your blog. I could've stuck it on YouTube again but didn't feel like cutting that one up for the usual 10 minute limit.

Chris Sobieniak said...

Tim Eldred wrote:
The jerky animation in the MZ23 clips is just key animation without the inbetweens, which happened often enough to be noticable in the waning days of the OAV. (You can see a lot of it in one of the Gal Force Earth Chapters, for example.) It could simply be that budgets and schedules were just crushing the life out of people and some scenes simply didn't make it across the finish line before the Yabba Dabba Doo whistle went off.


I sorta figured that was what I was seeing in those clips. They just didn't get around to sending those cuts over to the inbetweeners where it probably could've saved this from the toilet it belongs. Being reminded of having watched one nameless American feature produced in the 80's or 90's that was that terrible in it's production, but a Japanese OAV could've done better than if it had been seen on TV, oh well.

Tim Eldred again said...

Okay, just thought of a gripe...

What IS it with the recent trend of NOT translating the names of programs when they get imported? The ridiculously long one in the teaser for the next podcast is way over the line and downright pretentious. Is somebody telling me there's no possible translation for it, so it has to stay as is? Increasingly, I find the untranslated names to be such a turnoff that I can't get up the energy to care about any of the shows they represent.

Maybe it's a benchmark for how deeply anime has ingrained itself in our pop culture, but as long as they're still trying to capture an English-speaking audience there ought to be some attempt to clarify the friggin name.

Along those lines, it's my understanding that the X in certain titles (Hunter X Hunter, Gun X Sword, etc) can be interpreted as 'and.' That's how I deal with it, anyway. I've also seen the X interpreted as 'cross.' It's become fashionable in an interview context to plop the X in between the names of the people talking so as to give them equal billing. In these cases, the term is 'crosstalk.' (There's an example of this on the first volume of Wings of Rean. Unfortunately the interview itself is as ridiculous and pretentious as an untranslated show title.)

Carl Horn said...

It may be just me, but I rarely see at anime cons any filk, Klingons, or polyamory. Ironically, it's having younger fans dominate the scene that helps to innoculate against that sort of shit. Instead it's karaoke, Pyramid Heads, and guys cheating on their girlfriends.

Chris Sobieniak said...

Carl Horn said...

It may be just me, but I rarely see at anime cons any filk, Klingons, or polyamory. Ironically, it's having younger fans dominate the scene that helps to innoculate against that sort of shit. Instead it's karaoke, Pyramid Heads, and guys cheating on their girlfriends.


Ah, the classic pastime!

exedore said...

Tim Eldred Wrote:

(There's an example of this on the first volume of Wings of Rean. Unfortunately the interview itself is as ridiculous and pretentious as an untranslated show title.)

Tell me you got a screener or something for being industry. As for the interview...there's not much I can say other than it's Tomino being Tomino, and it's all the more reason for us Takahashi fans to stick together.

And I also agree re: show titles. Translate the fucking things so we know what the hell to call it *and* have it make sense for doing so.

Steve Harrison said...

Well, I've been ranting about the 'name' thing for some time, there's two seperate issues going on here....

In the US it's a case of 'knowing fan wants' ala Bandai Visual USA, only not so retarded. It's thought that showing off and keeping these sometimes complex Japanese show titles in Japanese, or romanized if you prefer, the companies are being more 'pure'. Funny, that, pushing the elitist angle while craving mainstream acceptance....

And we don't want to slide to the bad old days of throwing some odd American title on a show (High School Maidens from Outer Space!), do we?

But I've really been wondering about Japan for some time, how it seems TO ME, and my ignorance, that for TV anime the industry has turned away from show titles that have a rational English rendering (Sento mecha Xabungle is NOT Blue Gale Xabungle by any stretch, but note that Xabungle is Xabungle and can be safely called that, dig?)..some time in the early '90s it really seems like the entire industry tossed off a huge "F. U." at trying to get their stuff on air in the US and pulled back, focusing on the Domestic Japanese market. And in these cases suddenly everything has a title that just doesn't TRANSLATE well, because they're puns and wordplay and hints of then-current pop culture (think calling a show "the Debbinator" as a wordplay pun on the Terminator films)

Oh, sure, back in the day you had your Urusei Yatsura which twisted people in knots trying to render (in a sane, simple way) into English, and your Maison Ikkoku and such like, but for every Hokuto no Ken (and of course Fist of the North Star is...not that, not really, and yet it DOES work if you grasp the CONTEXT and not try for direct translation) you've got 10 Dr. Slumps.

I don't see it changing. The fans will decry the 'Sensorchip!!' (sic) and you just know that random names stuck on things won't find favor with anyone...

Altho...Gerald? MB's been doing that a LOT with their hentai releases. Is there any though on that out there?

Anonymous said...

I can assure you as Vice Chair of the Providence Anime Conference that there will be NO filk

No filk? Bummer. That's one thing that was prevelant at earlier anime cons that's sadly missing from current ones.

E. Bernhard Warg
Otakon Classic Track
Anime's Frank

Gerald said...

Altho...Gerald? MB's been doing that a LOT with their hentai releases. Is there any though on that out there?

Yeah, Media Blaster has been doing some rather silly name changes such as "Foxy Nudes", "The Two Facials of Eve", "Women at Work" (which was originally called just "The Guts"), among others. I guess they're just having some fun with their hentai stuff since the original titles are obviously not descriptive enough. Although there are problems when they rename stuff like how Front Innocent got changed for some mysterious reason to Another Lady Innocent which suggested that there were more than just that episode.

Also, what's up E. Bernhard Warg? I saw you in the audience at a bunch of our panels, but you disappeared before we could chat.

Clarissa said...

Tim -

Zaizen Jotaro isn't licensed, so there's no issue with that particular show over not translating the title.

As for in general, it really depends. There are shows that have the title translated--e.g. Higurashi no Naku Koro ni is released here as When They Cry--but sometimes there are titles that don't translate well, and since many of the most vocal fans are hardcore fansub watchers who are familiar with the original Japanese title, that's what they think of it as and want to see.

To be fair, sometimes English title versions suck ass and the fans just ask them to leave it, as in the case of Utawarerumono--which I think they wanted to call Shadow Warrior Chronicles or something equally lame and forgettable. Other times it's just fan taste overall, as when Be Beautiful asked fans what they wanted Kodaka's Midaresomenishi manga called here, and fans voted for...Midaresomenishi (though they tacked "a Legend of Samurai Love" or something onto the end of that).

kevin g said...

As far as the X in show titles. It's up there with my hateful dislike for exchanging a 3 for an E, Y for an I, or, perhaps the worst, Z for an S.

I was secretly hopeful that Paprika would spread to more theaters and help change the perception of anime, or animation in general, here in America. Though, in all honesty, I think television is a more likely avenue for changing public opinion. Something like adult swim, but on one of the big three stations, and with shows actually geared for adults.

MARA: Really looking forward to the Providence Anime Conference, and hoping it turns out how you seem to want it as well.

Censoring: There was an episode of Gun Sword that did a parody of this. With a donkey that would randomly pop up for "censorship".

Anonymous said...

Also, what's up E. Bernhard Warg? I saw you in the audience at a bunch of our panels, but you disappeared before we could chat.

Sorry 'bout that, Gerald. I'd like to have chatted as well.

I was mostly in Video 4 making sure everything was running smoothly (e.g. that the gophers were following instructions like "Show these two episodes on this DVD, then these two eps on this one," "Play this bonus DVD I burned after the eps end," or "Only show the first 4 eps, then the 'About Us."), seeing how well received my programming choices were ("Hmm...it seems that untranslated Cutey Honey works better than untranslated Vampire..."), and, of course, showing filler off my Video iPod.

I suppose I could be less hands-on, but I like to see what sort of titles work and which ones don't, and educate people a little. I was also experimenting with showing raw Japanese titles during "decent" hours (previously they'd only been scheduled very early or very late).

E. Bernhard Warg
Otakon Classic Track
Anime's Frank

Colin said...

I don't really dislike Fred or Megatokyo, but I really hope Megatokyo flops in Japan so that we don't see a trend of bad American attempts at ripping off stereotypes and characteristics of manga/anime coming from here over to Japan.

I think that my main issue with people who aren't Japanese or creating works for Japanese publications attempting to make "manga," is that it's meant as disrespect to American comics, as if the term comics has become dirty or something

Chris Sobieniak said...

Colin said...

I don't really dislike Fred or Megatokyo, but I really hope Megatokyo flops in Japan so that we don't see a trend of bad American attempts at ripping off stereotypes and characteristics of manga/anime coming from here over to Japan.


I hope so too!

I think that my main issue with people who aren't Japanese or creating works for Japanese publications attempting to make "manga," is that it's meant as disrespect to American comics, as if the term comics has become dirty or something

I would also say 'childish' though I hardly ever see comics get sold in a fashion it used to be that way in my youth. Pretty much people just don't have faith that we could ever bring our comic book industry up to speed as with Japanese comics and would abandon it altogether for cleaner pastures' (so to speak).

By the way, it took me some time figuring it out, but I wonder if "Hard-On" name in MG23 The Third was meant to be a spoof of the Sega arcade classic, "Hang-On"? I also spotted a few parody logos to familiar game names and copies in the backgrounds of the arcade like Konami's Gradius.

Dave Riley said...

Does that mean a SUPER Hard-On is in the works?

Anonymous said...

By the way, it took me some time figuring it out, but I wonder if "Hard-On" name in MG23 The Third was meant to be a spoof of the Sega arcade classic, "Hang-On"?

I was under the impression that it was a combination of "Hard Driving" and "Hang-On"

E. Bernhard Warg
Otakon Classic Track
Anime's Frank

Alexander Strange said...

Zetsubou-sensei does not have the director's face in it, nor does it have any major fanservice scenes. That's an assistant of the original mangaka, which is all over the place in the comic (and in Hayate the Combat Butler). That scene was them trolling people like the guy who sent you that letter.

PS also he did the Negima where they didn't have any fanservice in it, but it still wasn't that good.

Anonymous said...

"I still think that the market is too small and the vast majority of the anime watching public today doesn't care about anything beyond the Bleachs and Narutos of the world."

Paprika did pretty well, and is about to beat Metropolis, so I disagree there. (Of course, TK was a total bust, but then there wasn't much hype for it, because no one cares about gaijins directing anime, when we got enough of them writing boring "World Manga".)

As for the worst anime I've ever seen, it'd have to be the second half of Ninja Scroll the tv show. Besides the guy who directed Doom, it's amazing how anyone can fuck up something so simple.

Oh, and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8qbGwFj4Qmk

colin: "I can't believe I haven't seen Demon City Shinjuku, cause as I look to my left I see the majority of work made by Kawajiri thats available in english."

A lot of other under-looked Kawajiri titles are Birdy The Mighty, A Wind Named Amnesia, and Bio Hunter.

"I don't really dislike Fred or Megatokyo, but I really hope Megatokyo flops in Japan so that we don't see a trend of bad American attempts at ripping off stereotypes and characteristics of manga/anime coming from here over to Japan."

You're too late; it already happened under IMAGE.

chris: "Kinda shocked Kodansha would be that interested in publishing Megatokyo at all."

I'm guessing they get it for free through their DH connection.

clarissa: "Zaizen Jotaro isn't licensed,"

Well, not licensed yet for American shores, but Universal Studios owns it and Fist of the Blue Sky in Japan; and the fact that they just got the live-action Dororo would suggest they have a plan to eventually expand into the market-assuming they don't give us a piss-poor release as awful as GITS: Innocence.

kevin g: "I was secretly hopeful that Paprika would spread to more theaters and help change the perception of anime, or animation in general, here in America."

Waddya talkin' about? The only anime which got as many cities as
http://www.campuscircle.net/image/paprikars.htm
is from Ghibli. Hell, it's even got a MySpace page! ( http://www.myspace.com/paprikamovie ) And the reviews have been excellent, too. http://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/paprika/

dave riley: "Does that mean a SUPER Hard-On is in the works?"

Isn't that Choaniki?

Anonymous said...

Gotta agree, TekkonKinkreet was a total disappointment. Even saw it in the theater too. I don't care who directs it as long as they know what they're doing - Arias may know his CG , but he sure can't tell a good story. Also, why was his name in katakana during the opening and closing credits, while all the other non-Japanese credits got alphabetized (ie Anthony Weintraub)? If anyone knows the answer, that would be great, otherwise I'm just gonna assume he did that to make himself look more "Japanese."

Whatever...

Anonymous said...

Oh yeah, and the one thing I like about original Japanese titles is they makes looking through Amazon a lot easier, since the search engine is less likely to get confused with a Western book or dvd.

kevin g said...

kevin g: "I was secretly hopeful that Paprika would spread to more theaters and help change the perception of anime, or animation in general, here in America."

Waddya talkin' about? The only anime which got as many cities as
http://www.campuscircle.net/image/paprikars.htm
is from Ghibli. Hell, it's even got a MySpace page! ( http://www.myspace.com/paprikamovie ) And the reviews have been excellent, too. http://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/paprika/


I think it's fairly clear that great reviews don't translate into ticket sales.

I still say the average American doesn't even know what Paprika is. What I meant was; I was hopeful for a nationwide theatrical release and, as I said, a change in the mainstream perception of what animation can be.

Area88 said...

The court record will show that you also strongly defend Odin, MD Geist, Outlanders, Roots Search, and every single craptacular thing from the 1980s

Chris Beveridge gave Outlanders a B+ for content, does that undermine him? My comments were questioning AWO's lack of any objectivity when reviewing Birth.

suto said...

I saw Paprika at the Cedar Lee in Cleveland. One of the nicest looking films ever. Too bad the movie was so retarded. The title character would come in to save the day, and the problem would resolved, but you would have no idea how. I think they made up the rules as they went along (See Howls Moving Castle). Also, all the fake scientific speak was several notches below the middling stuff seen in the Matrix (dude, what if this is all virtual reality?!). Great looking film, though.

Anonymous said...

kevin g: "I think it's fairly clear that great reviews don't translate into ticket sales."

True, but it made almost $35,000 in its first weekend, when there were only two theaters for it. Is that still too small for you?

area88: "Chris Beveridge gave Outlanders a B+ for content, does that undermine him?"

I think what undermines him is his emphasis on hentai reviews which probably led him to rate Outlanders higher, because of the chick on the cover.

Elizabeth Christian-Smith said...

How is the review for Birth not objective? Clarissa mentions both strong and weak points, she uses examples from the OAV itself, and she hasn't displayed any biases against its creators that I know of. It seems like your criterion for subjectivity is disliking something that you like.

You can't argue with opinions, you can only argue with the process by which people arrive at their opinions. If Clarissa's review told us Birth sucked repeatedly without explanation of why, you might have a case. If you can show us evidence that Clarissa's opinion of Birth is the result of some sort of grudge or that Clarissa has never shown an open mind towards anime of this type, you might have a case. In your criticism of the Birth review, you effectively keep saying over and over, "You didn't like it, but I did, so you must not be biased." You provide no evidence except that you like it, and she doesn't.

I don't know how old you are, but you seems kind of defensive about your tastes. The fact that the AWO crew dislikes things that you like just means that maybe you shouldn't rely on their recommendations. This rerelease of Birth was not going to spark of brilliant new era of appreciation for the work no matter what AWO said about it. Brilliant, abysmal, or somewhere in between, an 80s OAV release is a boutique item whose appeal is not going to be affected by a podcast's negative review. Thus the only harms this review could do are to harm the podcast's integrity if Clarissa is indeed biased or to make you feel bad that you like what you like. If AWO lacks integrity and that what you want from an anime podcast, you can drop it. If criticisms of things you like make you feel bad, remember that we are not the things we like.

Anonymous said...

lols. You guys spelled Del Rey as Del Ray in the show notes.

Sub said...

Paprika had a really great opening weekend when I went to see it here in NYC. The theater running it is a giant multiplex that runs arthouse fare and blockbusters alike, and Paprika opened the same weekend as Pirates 3. I saw the movie in a packed theater. Having seen a lot of anime in empty theaters, I got the feeling that that this wasn't a theater packed with anime fans, it was a theater packed with people who couldn't get into the sold-out-all-night Pirates showings.

Specifically, there were a lot of parents with kids in the theater: the R rating apparently fazed them as much as the M rating--and subsequent clerk explanation thereof-- on a Grand Theft Auto box fazes parents at Gamestop. Eh, it's a videogame! Eh, it's a cartoon!

Anonymous said...

sub: The title probably helped fool parents into thinking it was a Euro arthouse film, or at least modeled after them. If it was Saw or Hostel, they'd probably have avoided it. (Well, the ones who aren't the type to drag kids to torture porn, anyway...)

Apreche said...

At all the cons I've been to in the past few years Tokyopop and Viz have had a much smaller presence. I think the only time I saw Viz with a booth in the past three years was at the New York Comic-con. I'm getting the impression that the US manga publishers have decided that they should act more like comic and book publishers and not like members of the anime industry. That sucks for them because I hate comic conventions.

Also, at anime cons in general, especially fan-run cons, the industry has dramatically decreased booth presence in recent years. I remember Otakon 3 or 4 years ago when the industry had a gigantic presence with crazy huge booths for everybody. Look at the map for this year and it's basically a complete 180. The industry booth area was basically a place to get some air and stretch your legs. Oh for the days when ADV gave out free copies of Newtype USA and gave Anime Network surveys next to a car full of merch they were giving away to a lucky winner. Now all we have is the Bandai Visual HD theatre.

Anonymous said...

Well, it's quite obvious no one on AWO's actually seen Hayate the Combat Butler or So Long, Mr. Despair (aka Zetsubou Sensei for the weeaboo fags). The censoring in these two shows are used ironically for comedic effect, which seems to be lost on our undersexed Scottish friend. Can't say much for censorship in Air Gear, as no one really cares about that shitty show.

P.S. Scotty needs to worry less about seeing tits and ass in anime and get out more often. Real punani > anime punani

Sub said...

I just started watching Zetsubou Sensei and that guy's face is everywhere. I don't even think they have any reason to remove him for the DVD release. It's a good gag, and this is hardly a tits and ass show.

young freud said...

Oh Christ, you guys were right about the animation for MZ23 the 3rd. It is like five frames a second. In fact, you could've saved yourselves the trouble of posting it on YouTube and just made animated .gifs of those scenes. It probably would've been smaller and load quicker.

This sure blows that myth of '80s anime being a lot smoother than today's anime.

Carl Horn said...

>>Real punani > anime punani

Which is why men cease jerking off once they get a girlfriend, and especially once they get married. While I have respeck for Ali G., in real life it seems few men value the real punani so highly that they abjure the fake. It's a clue that human relationships aren't necessarily to be judged success or failure by how much sexual satisfaction either party is getting from it--and forcing that test on two people can be as false in a relationship as cheating around. On the flip side, this is why Ogiue and Ohno are such positive role models for the new generation.

Dave Riley said...

Anime punani never makes fun of you or forgets to call you back. :(

Heidi said...

I don't think citing AoD reviews helps anyone's arguments much, considering the bizarre grading system they have. When a B+ is average, something ain't right.

James Leung Man-Fai said...

Dave, anime punani will only make fun of you if your name is Chase Wang.

David_Darko said...

"P.S. Scotty needs to worry less about seeing tits and ass in anime and get out more often. Real punani > anime punani"

Well, anime punani (or "PUNANIME" as it were) is just fine and dandy, but you could be getting so much more bang for your buck (BEST PUN EVER) watching like, actual anime porn as opposed to this weird psuedo-porn harem stuff.

On to more pressing matters: Now that we're getting into the bad 80's anime here, I think it's up to either Daryl or Fast Karate to take on Genocyber. WOO HOO.

Régis said...

Seeing as it can only get worse before it gets better, why not add Voltage Fighter Gowcaizer to that, and spicy it up with Weiss Kreuz and Kamikaze Kaitou Jeanne.

;p

muddyjunk said...

Awright, Angel Cop is up next! Mel Gibson's got nothing on Ichiro Itano!

Gerald said...

Seeing as it can only get worse before it gets better, why not add Voltage Fighter Gowcaizer to that, and spicy it up with Weiss Kreuz and Kamikaze Kaitou Jeanne.

Gowcaizer YEAH, that's an incredibly awful show, Weiss Kreuz, YES now that is crap on a stick, Kamikaze Kaitou Jeanne...

...

Wait...

What's wrong with Kamikaze Kaitou Jeanne? It's just a decent little magical girl show, sure it has a pretty ridiculous premise, but nothing worse than any other magical girl show. Am I missing something here?

Dave Riley said...

When a B+ is average, something ain't right.

PREACH IT SISTA.

It's not like Chris Bevridge et al. have their hands in the anime company cookie pots, or whatever, but it's hard to trust their stuff/use it as a source when it seems like practically everything on the market gets a good grade. Not everything out there is great, y'know...

Régis said...

Years ago at my college anime club I remember watching the first ep of Kamikaze Kaitou Jeanne and feeling sick at the horrible animation. The characters looked catatonic, their eyes almost pointing to different directions and, yeah, as you've pointed out Gerald, it's pretty cliché. So, why rank it with the shows I mentioned? Well, I guess it's the kind of bad that is not "so bad it's good" as you guys have pointed out before. Hey, I have no problem with the magical girl genre. I remember watching Card Captor Sakura back in the VHS fansub days, and while it wasn't anything revolutionary, the animation and the characters and the direction had quite an appeal to it. I can forgive shows that don't have flashy animation but that support it with good story (Mushishi is a great example - REALLY, REALLY good show), and I can forgive shows with a weak story, but that have incredible animation (I've watched Dead Leaves many times, and it's always a lot of fun), BUT, when a show has neither, then what is there really to enjoy?

The Moogle Master said...

Hey Daryle, you should review kanon ( How to to spell that show) or mew mew tarato, because i know you want to.

Have anyone of you seen Sonic X, or The Sonic Movie.

Epic Win!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

tim eldred said...

Well, that's it. Black is white. Up is down. New Shimmer is neither a floor wax NOR a dessert topping.

I woke this morning to hear a report on NPR about the AMV contest at Otakon. Like it was the latest thing sweeping the nation or something.

Where have we, as a people, gone wrong?

On the other hand, it was in the leadup-to-the-top-of-the-hour-story, which is usually their slot for oddball stuff that is too eclectic to pair up with any other story.

But still...AMVs on NPR...is there no escape?

Apreche said...

I can forgive shows that don't have flashy animation but that support it with good story (Mushishi is a great example - REALLY, REALLY good show)

WTF! Mushishi has amazing animation. It's done in twos! Yes, Mushishi is an amazing show and manga, but if you're saying that animation is no good, you have no clue what you are talking about.

Régis said...

Whoa, hang on there! You're totally right, and I guess something got lost in the translation. What I meant by flashy is constant action scenes, and explosions, and the camera moving, (like Hiroyuki Imaishi's animation or Yoshinori Kanada's) ... But, there is no doubt that the animation in Mushishi is great! Maybe I should have cleared that up - sorry :/ - but, yeah, Mushishi has some great subtle animation, which is as good as the flashy off the wall zany stuff. Don't worry apreche, I'm on your team!

:)



PS: not all of it is on 2's. All the effects, from what I noticed going frame by frame, are on 1's. It's a well balanced mix - there are some good animators/directors on that show (Tadashi Hiramatsu is probably the most underrated one, but then again, who'd know who he is here?)

Chris Sobieniak said...

tim eldred said...
Well, that's it. Black is white. Up is down. New Shimmer is neither a floor wax NOR a dessert topping.


Haven't heard that statement in a long time!

I woke this morning to hear a report on NPR about the AMV contest at Otakon. Like it was the latest thing sweeping the nation or something.

Heh, NPR you say?.....

Where have we, as a people, gone wrong?

I feel your pain (especially NPR).

I sometimes loathe the guys who do those "YouTube Poop" vids often because of what MovieMaker has brought to the internet with it's simple-ass approach to video editing that was once a time-consuming and skillful craft. They thing they have something going, but their concept isn't new at all. I've seen that stuff decades before in the experimental, juxtapositional world of the pretentious collage work done by film majors and would-be dreamers. The only difference was that they had to do things all in analog, getting their hands dirty pulling and cutting footage in an effort to create what they considered 'art' as the final composition.

Still, it's fun laughing at the stupid vids!

The Moogle Master said...

There's some funny shit on youtube. I really like the one were some guy re-dubbed Sonic X, that shit made me laugh my ass off.




Anyone here think Narato is fucking gay?

exedore said...

On something completely unrelated to this week's episode...

Does anybody here have the scripts for the three Votoms OVA's that Newtype Animation/NT-Anime did in the late 90's? We have R2's, we have someone to do cleanup, and we have a lead on an alternative script for one of them, but the more help we can get, the better.

Shining Heresay will follow once we get through these, if that helps. =)

Sam said...

Actually, MegaZone 23 III was dubbed in the UK by Manga UK and did pretty well. It was released on it's own with the "III" removed from the cover (and both parts edited together to form a movie).

In fact, Manga UK's translation of the show made a lot more sense, and I found it to be a really good movie, but ADV's translation (I imported the DVD set) for some reason seems to be a lot more vague and doesn't explain everything.