Interview: CN re: Cowboy Bebob and Adult SwimJun 27th 2001
Ken-san has recently had the chance get the answers to everyone's burning questions about Cartoon Network's upcoming Adult Swim programming block, Cowboy Bebop, Gundam and more. Here's what Ken-san's contact at Cartoon Network had to say.
- How was the initial fan reaction to Mobile Suit Gundam? Was it met with favor from the fans or scorn over it's obvious older animation? How do fans react to it now that it's nearly halfway through?
So far the fans seem to like MS Gundam. The ratings have been solid and that is definitely incredible for an older show. The ratings have been steady and feedback has been positive. People are looking forward to more Gundam series set in the "Universal Century" timeline.
- How well did the 10 episode 08th MS team fair? Why was it chosen to be played at midnight, instead of in correlation to the First Gundam series in the afternoon slot. Is there a possibility that 08th MS Team will be played in the afternoon slot?
It was actually an 11 episode 08th MS Team. We will eventually air it during the day as well, but we thought it would be a nice change of pace for the late night fans to have a premiere in the midnight run for a change. That's really the only reason.
- What would you say is the winning demographic for these shows? Does it skew young or more to an older audience?
Toonami programming generally skews male, 6-24. Gundam does tend to skew a bit older than the other shows on Toonami, probably because of its serious tone.
- Having Cowboy Bebop on Cartoon Network is almost like a dream come true for a lot of it's fans. I say almost because there are a lot of fans who are worried that extensive edits will ruin the adult-nature of the show, and make it into a pale shadow of what it truly is. Do the fans have to worry much?
The fans shouldn't have to worry much. Cowboy Bebop will be edited for a TV-14 rating. That being said, certain swear words (one in particular), scenes involving a great deal of blood, and any nudity will be edited. All three of which would not make it on any TV-14 drama in primetime. Anything we are allowed to leave in, we will.
- At the recent fan convention Otakon, that took place in Baltimore this past weekend, Jerry Chu of Bandai said that Cartoon Network has it's own panel of editing. Supposing that this is true, which I'm sure it is, then what guidelines will be panel be basing it's edits? Since it will be for the older crowd of Adults, what will be considered out of bounds for broadcast? (swearing, nudity, violence, implied innuendo, etc.)
- Has the editing process started?
We are deep in the editing process right now. Doing it unobtrusively and with care towards the storyline is a very time consuming and delicate process. We have the utmost respect for Bebop as a show and hate to edit it at all, but at the same time, we want it to reach as wide an audience as possible- and if that means leaving out some gratuitous violence or profanity, we think that's an even trade.
- Your bond with Bandai is very strong! So strong that CN hasn't ventured out too far with other anime companies. Will that change in the near future?
Bandai has several great shows. Other anime companies also have shows that we are interested in, but we recognize the quality of Bandai's dubs and their overall catalogue. We won't limit ourselves to any one company. There is just too much good stuff out there.
Cowboy Bebop premieres on Cartoon Network's Adult Swim block on Sunday, September 2 at 10 PM EST/PST