Answerman and the Column of Doomby Zac Bertschy, Oct 24th 2003
OK, so once again Rebecca is out of commission, so here I am – AGAIN – writing this column. And here I thought I was done with this. Anyway, no time for love, let's get moving, shall we?
Dear Answerman/Ms. Answerman
I have two reasons why:
1-On the english cover of the first volume of the Saint Seiya manga, the title bar includes a RATHER LARGE picture of Dic's "Knights of the Zodiac" logo. Even more, while it also has the Saint Seiya logo on it, it's about FOUR TIMES smaller then the Dic logo.
2-Viz's description of of Saint Seiya on their site (or as they like ot call it "Knights of the Zodiac (Saint Seiya") INcludes the usage of the word "Knights" instead of "Saints", just like the Dic dub. The description also says that the "knights of Athena" will fight "Ares". The thing is, there IS NO "Ares (The God of War) in Saint Seiya. That was just a widely believed internet rumor which has been circling for several years, especially in among latin the latin fanbase.
I've tried emailing Viz several times concerning this, but they have not answered.
I'd appreciate it if you could somehow find what the truth is about the matter
and what exactly Viz will be doing with the manga.
What will we do if the Saint Seiya manga (which, I might add, is aimed at 12-year olds in Japan) has been edited or... (gasp, the unthinkable!) the NAMES have been CHANGED?!
THE SKY IS FALLING! THE SKY IS FALLING!
Seriously, dude, don't get so worked up over it. You're talking about minor edits to a children's comic book. World hunger is important. Poverty is important. Saint Seiya? Not so important. It's ludicrous overreactions like this one that give anime fans a bad name.
In any case, Kinghts of the Zodiac is a Shonen Jump title, but it isn't going in the monthly anthology; it's going to be graphic novel format only. What this means is that changes to the manga will probably be minimal (I couldn't get an answer out of Viz in time for this article, but if they get back to me I'll update it). It's my guess that the DiC version has some name changes in there to make it less confusing for the kids, and that the manga is following suit. Viz essentially had to use teh same name as the broadcast version, a TV run can more than double manga sales, but if the two products had different names Viz probably wouldn't get much of the benefit. In otherwords they'd be stupid not to release it with Knights of the Zodiac as the most visible title. Anyways, ADV is releasing an untouched DVD version of the original series for you purists out there, so you should be happy with that. Unfortunately, nobody's ever happy with anything these days, so the complaining continues. Here's why DiC made the changes: Saint Seiya is a hugely long series. In order to make money on something like this, which is to say, a children's show that's OK for kids in Japan but needs to be tinkered with to be OK for kids in America, they need to change it around a little. Not every company is simply interested in charity cases where they lose money on a product in order to make hardcore fans happy. “Saints” does not fly in America, where that word holds serious meaning for a gigantic portion of Catholics, which is a big religion here but not in Japan. You really expect them to put something with questionable religious content on childrens' broadcast TV? What planet are you living on? Even Cartoon Network edits out religious references. I hate to set you up like a straw dog here, but a lot of people really don't understand the nuances of American broadcasting, how these people make money (they have families to feed, you know), and fans expect every company to just bow down to the whims of the extremely angry and vocal minority that's never happy with anything anyway. You're getting an uncut version of the anime. The manga is probably changed around a bit. My diagnosis? You'll live.
Dear Ms. Answerman or Mr. Answerman,
I've noticed that a lot of recent TOKYOPOP English manga releases (like Brain Powered and Cowboy Bebop: Shooting Star) don't translate sound effects. Do you know why that is?
Thanks for your time.
Mostly because it screws with the original image. Sound effects are drawn in as part of the picture, and it's easier and cheaper to just have little translations for them on the sides or not translate them at all (how important is it that you know it says “Whoosh!” behind someone's fist flying through the air? Can we just make that assumption? I think so.) than it is to completely remake the manga image with new English sound effects drawn in. I think manga publishers sorta realized that most people really don't care about the sound effects anyway and are saving some money not translating them. Makes sense to me.
Good question. Looks like he's saying “Ma mu mo”
to me, but that really doesn't mean anything. Maybe it's “You
still owe me twelve dollars”. Or “I'm actually a very small
alien piloting a Gendo robot.” Or “You looked better with the moustache.”
Seriously, nobody knows. It isn't in the script, it isn't on any fan pages I could find, it isn't subtitled... it's just more craziness and audience baiting from everyone's favorite madman, Hideaki Anno. The world may never know. I'm gonna go ahead and say that it's “You'll never get me Lucky Charms!”, just so I can sleep at night.
Dear Ms. Answerman,
Is there, in your opinion, any hope of hard yaoi manga (such as Nitta Youka's) ever seeing the light of day in the us? I really can't picture Borders stocking these books next to copies of Card Captor Sakura, and can only imagine the headaches involved in selling/marketing "comic books" that are, in many cases, primarily pornographic in nature. Would there be an audience for these beyond the fans already familiar with them, and would they be monetarily profitable? (To be fair, what about hentai manga?)
Tokyopop's shounen ai releases are a good start, and very welcome, but it seems to me a big step from Gravitation and Fake to, say, Haru wo Daite... Ita. What do you think?
Well, as it happens, at Yaoicon (it's a buttload of fun!) in San Francisco this past weekend, CPM announced a quintuplet of Yaoi licenses, so I suppose they're gonna go ahead and take the gamble. They've announced Kizuna, Kunshu-sama no koi no oaite, Kunshu-sama no koi katte and Kin no Cain, one of which is aimed at an 18 and over only audience. I'd imagine they'll be releasing it in the same fashion as their other ‘adult’ titles, that is to say, with a clear warning label, and wrapped in shrinkwrap. If the sales of videos like Level C are any indication, I'd say there's money to be made in the US with Yaoi. Every 5 minutes a new fangirl is born, you know. Hentai manga has been on sale in the US for years and years and years, although it's always filed away with the other porno comics; either CPM is going to put the hardcore Yaoi with the other porn, or they'll just use their usual (totally inadequate – come on, like that shrinkwrap stops anyone from seeing anything) methods of keeping the young'uns away from hardcore gay sex.
Dear Mr or Ms. Answerman
I was over at my local library today and I saw some new Ranma ½ graphic novels from the first couple of volumes now called "action edition" or something like that. I have over a dozen of the first section of graphic novels. Are these simply price reduced reissues or do the have have missing chapters like the new Oh My Goddess! graphic novels.
Those Ranma ½ reissues you're seeing don't contain any new content, but they are cheaper and smaller than the previous releases. In order to compete with Tokyopop's new bestselling 9.99 format, Viz is re-releasing all of their popular titles in smaller, unflipped* form. Word is they're selling pretty darn well, too. I believe the only re-release that has new content in it is Maison Ikkoku, which was a little hacked up during its original release. *Most of their re-releases are unflipped, but I think that Ranma may have remained flipped in the re-release, again, Viz didn't get back to us on time for this article, but I'll update it as soon as they do.
I have a question regarding Those Who Hunt Elves 2. I recently saw the last episode of the series and nothing was really resolved. I am wondering if you have heard anything about the series being cotinued or completed. Does this completely end the series? Thank you.
Nope. There's no more Those Who Hunt Elves, so you'll have to look elsewhere for your elf-stripping action. The show kinda flopped the second time around in Japan, so no more was ever made. I'd imagine the US release didn't do the blockbuster numbers required for ADV to produce a third sequel, so you're just going to have to imagine what happened (or read the manga series from ADV Manga, due out soon).
I was wondering if there are any websites where I could order a copy of Pocket Monster Advance Generation episodes. Do you know of any?
Since the market in the US for unedited, raw versions of a show for Japanese six year olds is pretty small, you're really only going to find it at a handful of specialty import shops, like maybe AMO Tokyo or CD Japan. They'll have legit R2 DVDs for you (most likely) and while they won't be cheap, it's probably your best bet, since you'll want to avoid bootlegs.
So i've been hearing (and reading) stuff on Evangelion Renewal. I've basically found out that on June 25th, the 10 dvd box set was released with TONS of extars. It sounds awesome. What i'm wondering, is if that is going to come to amercia any time soon? Or maybe it has and I just missed it?? If it hasn't come yet, do you know anything as to when it will/might be coming out here? Also would it contain the same extras and dvd material in the box set? Any info. would be helpful!
The license for this thing hasn't been picked up yet. I'd imagine nobody has it yet because the US R1 DVDs are still selling well and Gainax probably wants several million dollars for the distribution rights in America. It's anyone's guess as to who will pony up the cash for it, but as it stands, no, there's no US licensor and there might not be one for a long while now. You'll just have to wait and see. When and if it does come out, I'd imagine you'll see a super-deluxe special edition version with lots of extra crapola and special features.
Does mangaka works only with one publishing company or can they be contracted to multiple?
A mangaka basically works as a freelancer. They'll get a contract to do a series with one publisher, and see that series to its conclusion. Their next manga might get published by someone else, who offers them a contract. Sometimes, publishers like Shonen Jump will offer a particularly successful mangaka a contract for a few series in a row (Rather like getting a three-picture “deal” in the US).
I'm sure you've gotten this question a thousand times, but I'm dying to know
if there's going to be a second season of Berserk. I mean, there's a large fan
base, and the DVD's have sold pretty well. We need to know what happens!!!
Do you happen to know if there's a petition or someone I can write to?
No, Kayden, but let me explain. When we die, our bodies become the grass. And the antelope eat the grass. And so, we are all connected, in the great Circle of Life.
With the release of SD Gundam in the U.S.A, would there be a chance that the SD Gundam movies see release? And besides the apparent release of Zeta Gundam, the F91 movie and the other announced shows, what would you like to see come out in America from the Gundam series, or any series for that matter?
If Bandai releases one SD Gundam incarnation, the others are sure to come. Bandai has announced their intention to release every Gundam thing ever here in the States at one point or another, so “if” is a moot question. “When” is a valid one, but it is pretty annoying, since nobody really knows. As for other Gundam shows, I'm not a big Gundam fan, so I really couldn't care less what they release. I would like to see someone release Saishuuheiki Kanojo, though. That Was Good.
Anyway, that's it. See you next week!