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Hey, Answerman! - Haters Everywhere We Go


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the_windcaster



Joined: 16 Jun 2006
Posts: 47
PostPosted: Fri Aug 05, 2011 1:40 pm Reply with quote
Answerman, I'm usually right with you on a lot of things, but this time I feel like I gotta speak up.

Asobi ni Iku yo, despite appearances, is not as fanservice-laden and asinine as you might think. It's there a bit, and a little more than you find in a mainstream title, but it's actually funny, has some plot, and is at least somewhat endearing. I'd encourage you to at least give the first couple episodes a chance (since the first episode, theme song sequences, and promotional materials of shows like this tend to play up those aspects) before throwing such a strong opinion of a show you've never seen around in your column. Surely taking 45 minutes away from writing the column to do that much research, as I'm sure you do with other questions sometimes, wouldn't be that much trouble. Anything more than a Google image search.

Though kemonomimi for me is an easy sell, so who knows? Maybe I've just become one of "those guys."
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meruru



Joined: 16 Jun 2009
Posts: 376
PostPosted: Fri Aug 05, 2011 1:50 pm Reply with quote
In response to letter two, I've actually fansubbed some stuff years ago, but I admit that I do tend to get annoyed with fansubbing as it is now. It's the attitude I've seen some people have, where fansubbing the fastest has become some sort of competition, where the fastest subbers get bragging rights. And people expect to have the show the day it's aired, and will download the fansub, even if there's a subbed and officially licensed simulcast that will be available if you'd only wait a few days, and all the while they complain about the simulcast being too slow. I've had people complain at me while I was fansubbing that we weren't fast enough when we didn't release by the next day or when our videos weren't the highest quality (even though they were still pretty decent). What happened to the time when you'd watch crappy 4th generation VHS tapes and be happy you had that? Man, now I sound old. Anime hyper
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samuelp



Joined: 25 Nov 2007
Posts: 2111
Location: San Antonio, USA
PostPosted: Fri Aug 05, 2011 1:53 pm Reply with quote
Lately many anime's "international" names are decided by the anime production committees themselves before they are even created and sold.

One example of this is "The Tatami Galaxy", a name which was proposed in fact by the original novel author as an alternate english title.

On a personal note, I am helping to translate the movie To aru Hikuushi e no tsuioku which is coming out this fall for screener discs sent to film festival entries.

One of the things I helped with was coming up with the official english name for the movie, since the Japanese name is horribly long and unwieldy.

The process actually went like this:
The original publisher came up with a list of 3-4 names,
The company selling the overseas came up with a list of 3-4 names,
and I was asked as the translator to select from the choices and/or come up with my own suggestions.

Among the suggestions were fairly literal translations like "Recollections of a certain airman".
The publisher suggested a rewritten title like "A 3000 mile flight to love" (eww was my official reaction).

In the end I gave them two choices from me: a fairly literal "Memories of a Certain Flyboy"
or my Hollywood compatible title:
"The Princess and the Pilot"

Supposedly out of the 8-9 choices the original novel author chose my second suggestion.

Therefore, when this movie is screened in film festivals, and perhaps licensed, the english title will be "The Princess and the Pilot". You can call it "To aru Hikuushi e no Tsuioku" is you want to, though Smile.

There, that's a bit of how the sausage is made. To answer the question directly: By the time the title is announced, it's too late to change it, and usually the people making these decisions are in Japan. You cannot complain directly to anyone, there is no channel of communication. The best you can do is complain to the local licenser and hope they say something to the committee, but 9 times out of 10 they won't because it would be needlessly antagonistic.
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Sheleigha



Joined: 09 May 2008
Posts: 1595
PostPosted: Fri Aug 05, 2011 2:05 pm Reply with quote
meruru wrote:
In response to letter two, I've actually fansubbed some stuff years ago, but I admit that I do tend to get annoyed with fansubbing as it is now. It's the attitude I've seen some people have, where fansubbing the fastest has become some sort of competition, where the fastest subbers get bragging rights.


^This. I've come across subbers who have SUCH an ego that they treat themselves like gods. Seeing them mod forums gave off a HUGE "holier than thou" attitude. I also remember a long time ago when Digimon Tamers came out, there was a yahoo group (I believe it was) which was THE only exclusive way to find raws (since no one really subbed it then. The catch? You HAD to be a fan of a certain Digimon. Don't ask... I remember making a fake email and everything to sign up for it, and still no bites. Yeah, I keep forgetting about the elitism back then :/

Also, groups like Horriblesubs. All you have to do is read their "rules" on the front page to get a bad taste in your mouth.
"- We do not watch any of the shows we release except One Piece. Seriously." So.... why waste the time ripping HOW many shows if you don't care about them?? Are they REALLY doing it for the internationals who can't use Crunchyroll, or for themselves? Although it's just ripping, how can you call it "FANsubs" if you don't even care yourself?

As I've said over and over, the ONLY fansubs I truly appreciate, are ones that you may never see the light of day over here. However, because these series can be VERY long and hard to find raws of, it'll be an impossible task for me to say, find every subbed episode of Pokemon. At least the newer season is on the ball of things!
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Orange Hollow



Joined: 02 Jun 2010
Posts: 61
Location: Krasnoyarsk, Russia
PostPosted: Fri Aug 05, 2011 2:16 pm Reply with quote
I would have never watched Cat Planet Cuties if I didn't read extremely positive review of it on ANN. What a disappointment that was. Yep, Brian, you're absolutely right, it's MAN FALL INTO BOOB HILARIOUS and nothing more.
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Parse Error



Joined: 09 Oct 2009
Posts: 590
PostPosted: Fri Aug 05, 2011 2:17 pm Reply with quote
The thing I dislike about fansubbers is how at least four groups, excluding streamrippers and remuxers, will sub the same show that already has legal, near-simulcast streaming and an English dubbed DVD/BD release in the works, while you could probably count on your fingers all the people working on older anime that will almost certainly never be available to an English-speaking audience by any other means. Yes, legality aside, that's their choice to make, but it's still a disappointing misuse of their time and efforts. I guess if there's not enough demand to justify a commercial release then there isn't enough precious e-peen to be gained either.
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PetrifiedJello



Joined: 11 Mar 2009
Posts: 3782
PostPosted: Fri Aug 05, 2011 2:27 pm Reply with quote
I'm not sure if I can agree anime fans "expect" their box sets to be priced as they are. They expect a reasonable trade-off based on their perceived fair market value.

There's no "expectation" a subtitled-only anime, released in two part sets, should cost the same as a dubbed-only, two part set.

There's no "expectation" a digital episode be $1.99 each (which will make it more expensive than some of their physical counter parts in some cases).

There's no "expectation" all anime costs (nearly) the same, regardless of the number of episodes.

I still challenge this industry to prove itself a reasonably priced, 13 episode new release at $19.99 will hinder revenue. Until then, I do believe the increased prices we see are due to a dwindling market because people are tired of these games.

ANN has posted many news articles from Japan, but constantly posts bad news for any other region. It gives off a false sense of security we "need" to support the industry with a damn box set. That's bullshit.

Anyone visiting this site is contributing to anime. Anyone who buys products advertised in Japan (such as Pocky) are contributing to anime. Anyone buying merchandise other than DVDs is contributing to anime.

The issue is that non-DVD sales aren't contributing to local distributors, and this is the key difference.

No matter. If the last 3 years have taught me anything, it's how to be a very good subtitle reader.
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ljaesch



Joined: 03 Apr 2009
Posts: 299
Location: Enumclaw, WA
PostPosted: Fri Aug 05, 2011 2:48 pm Reply with quote
When it comes to decreased number of episodes of DVD, my main gripe comes with the Bleach box sets. I own seasons one through three, as well as both parts of season four.

Season 1 has 20 episodes
Season 2 has 21 episodes
Season 3 has 22 episodes
Season 4 Part 1 has 16 episodes
Season 4 Part 2 has 12 episodes

My husband and I were wondering why Viz didn't bother to release all of Season 4 as one box set and charge a little more for it than the previous three. Honestly, we would have been willing pay a slightly higher price for more episodes. It's such a drastic drop in episodes from Season 3 to Season 4 Part 1. Razz

And from what I was reading in this column the other week, it sounds like the later sets are more like Season 4 Part 2. Grr. From what I recall when I purchased each part of Season 4, that the price was only slightly less than what I paid for the first three, which had more episodes.

While I can understand why Viz made this change on a business level, I'm still a little frustrated as a consumer; to me, it feels more like Viz is trying to "milk the franchise" by spreading episodes out among more sets. Sometimes, I wish I had more disposable income... but with three kids, a mortgage, and other bills, I just don't have as much money for luxuries as I would like. So being forced to ultimately have to pay more to acquire future episodes of Bleach is rather frustrating, especially since it's a property I like and I *want* to support financially.
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doctordoom85



Joined: 12 Jun 2008
Posts: 1980
PostPosted: Fri Aug 05, 2011 2:59 pm Reply with quote
Quote:
Nobody buys an expensive US TV series on DVD for fifty bucks unless they're already a fan of it. Nobody picks up a brand-new Hollywood movie on Blu-ray on release day for 25 bucks unless they've already seen it and they want to own it.


So according to Brain, I don't exist! Laughing Okay, I'm definitely the exception, not the rule, but I find it fairly easy to "know" what I'll like simply from a description of the plot setup, a trailer, cast/crew involved, etc. I've rarely got burned this way. I respect that most people do not function this way, but Brian could have worded it differently in a way that didn't seem to suggest this sort of practice is just stupid.

PetrifiedJello: initial 13-episode sets at $20 MSRP?! I can only assume you just want the R1 industry to collapse, as that would be the quickest way to commit suicide. It's not like the anime fandom is suddenly going to multiply like crazy just because the DVDs got cheaper. Niche fandom = niche prices. And I understand why sub-only DVDs sometimes cost as much as DVDs with dubs, the lack of a dub indicates this series will not sell that much and the company needs to charge accordingly. I'm not saying you can't go too far (*COUGH* Garden of Sinners *COUGH*), but the current R1 DVD market makes sense mostly as far as I'm concerned.

Besides, "expectations" are often a bunch of wavering BS. Sure, lower the price now and people will be "satisfied". Oh wait, then a year passes and people are bitching again. You know, seeing as how anime prices have continuously dropped over the years and yet we're STILL discussing this for whatever reason?!

Come no, there's clearly a difference in the amount of support fans can provide. Throwing a few more hits onto ANN's counter isn't really doing much.

I think you're just throwing words into ANN's mouth. The guy wrote that he bought the shows he liked and Brian approved, that's it. He never said, "don't you dare try to use some of that spending money on figures, or CDs, or wallscrolls!" or the like. If he had said that he bought those as well, I highly doubt Brian would have criticized.

Although, how in the hell does Pocky, a food product, support the anime industry?!
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Petrea Mitchell



Joined: 12 Jan 2007
Posts: 437
Location: Near Portland, OR
PostPosted: Fri Aug 05, 2011 3:02 pm Reply with quote
"All the big cons"? Not Worldcon, not Dragon*Con?

(No, they're not exclusively anime cons, but neither is Comic-Con.)

I love your column and eagerly await it every week. I'm sorry the thing that finally got me to speak up was a complaint.
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Pepperidge



Joined: 13 Sep 2003
Posts: 1087
Location: British Columbia, Canada
PostPosted: Fri Aug 05, 2011 3:39 pm Reply with quote
I can't think of a better way to put the whole "entitlement vs. expectation issue" than how Brian put it. Bravo!
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Sheleigha



Joined: 09 May 2008
Posts: 1595
PostPosted: Fri Aug 05, 2011 3:43 pm Reply with quote
Parse Error wrote:
The thing I dislike about fansubbers is how at least four groups, excluding streamrippers and remuxers, will sub the same show that already has legal, near-simulcast streaming and an English dubbed DVD/BD release in the works, while you could probably count on your fingers all the people working on older anime that will almost certainly never be available to an English-speaking audience by any other means. Yes, legality aside, that's their choice to make, but it's still a disappointing misuse of their time and efforts. I guess if there's not enough demand to justify a commercial release then there isn't enough precious e-peen to be gained either.


I've never understood this either. I understand choice. A new show starts airing on TV and sometimes up to TEN groups will rush to get it out. Slowly though, they get dropped and maybe 2-3 of those groups actually continue to finish it. There's always the choice there of whose subs you'd prefer, that I get. BUT, I've never understood why a subbing group randomly decides "hey, we are starting to do... Chobits!!" Why of all things?? Why waste time doing series like that, instead of focusing on your main series (in this example used, the group is pretty much the ONLY group that subs Yu-Gi-Oh!, so why bother with a series that's not only been out forever, but already subbed a million times AND localized several times too?)

I do know some subs have been redone, since the original subbers either had horrible quality and/or TERRIBLE translations (to the point where it's not even proper dialogue being spoken...) and those I'd say, and the only ones worth doing. And even then, these that get remade, are more niche subs.

For the others though, I scratch my head in confusion...


Last edited by Sheleigha on Fri Aug 05, 2011 3:45 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Kazemon15



Joined: 24 Mar 2007
Posts: 373
PostPosted: Fri Aug 05, 2011 3:45 pm Reply with quote
doctordoom85 wrote:
Quote:
Nobody buys an expensive US TV series on DVD for fifty bucks unless they're already a fan of it. Nobody picks up a brand-new Hollywood movie on Blu-ray on release day for 25 bucks unless they've already seen it and they want to own it.


So according to Brain, I don't exist! Laughing Okay, I'm definitely the exception, not the rule, but I find it fairly easy to "know" what I'll like simply from a description of the plot setup, a trailer, cast/crew involved, etc. I've rarely got burned this way. I respect that most people do not function this way, but Brian could have worded it differently in a way that didn't seem to suggest this sort of practice is just stupid.

PetrifiedJello: initial 13-episode sets at $20 MSRP?! I can only assume you just want the R1 industry to collapse, as that would be the quickest way to commit suicide. It's not like the anime fandom is suddenly going to multiply like crazy just because the DVDs got cheaper. Niche fandom = niche prices. And I understand why sub-only DVDs sometimes cost as much as DVDs with dubs, the lack of a dub indicates this series will not sell that much and the company needs to charge accordingly. I'm not saying you can't go too far (*COUGH* Garden of Sinners *COUGH*), but the current R1 DVD market makes sense mostly as far as I'm concerned.

Besides, "expectations" are often a bunch of wavering BS. Sure, lower the price now and people will be "satisfied". Oh wait, then a year passes and people are bitching again. You know, seeing as how anime prices have continuously dropped over the years and yet we're STILL discussing this for whatever reason?!

Come no, there's clearly a difference in the amount of support fans can provide. Throwing a few more hits onto ANN's counter isn't really doing much.

I think you're just throwing words into ANN's mouth. The guy wrote that he bought the shows he liked and Brian approved, that's it. He never said, "don't you dare try to use some of that spending money on figures, or CDs, or wallscrolls!" or the like. If he had said that he bought those as well, I highly doubt Brian would have criticized.

Although, how in the hell does Pocky, a food product, support the anime industry?!


This so hard.

In Japan, shorter series actually cost MORE than longer running series due to the fact they have higher production value and need to earn a profit.

I import Reborn DVDs from Japan and I can get 40 episodes for $340. But if you look up the Japanese prices for let's say....High School of the Dead or Clannad, a 13 and 25 episode series, those boxsets are at least going for $600-$700 or 2 episodes per DVD at $70 range. (Reborn costs $50 for 4 episodes)

So why does America still have the same price for 13 episode series? I think the answer is obvious based on the Japanese prices. Shorter series, although shorter, cost more than longer series. It probably costs more to license them as well.

We have Anime basically handed to us on a Silver Platter and spoon fed to us and people still complain about the little "dirty spots" on the silverware, not about the quality of the product you're paying for.

Anime is NOT a cheap hobby and if you're not willing (or too cheap) to buy the releases you really like and want, it's suggested to give it up, or save up your money. You may not get the "new release" right away, but you'll get it eventually.

As for me, I haven't watched a show online in years. I can wait. I'm not so impatient to download and watch a series that I know is more than likely going to be licensed eventually. I just blind buy whatever looks interesting to me and save the watching experience for my TV in HQ.
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zensunni



Joined: 05 Mar 2010
Posts: 1262
PostPosted: Fri Aug 05, 2011 4:06 pm Reply with quote
To the first letter writer: If you're going to complain about translated titles, at least get the titles right! As Brian commented, "Heaven's Memo Pad" and "God's Notebook" are at least kissin' cousins of each other, if not overly friendly siblings. They both convey the same concept, but the second avoids potential issues with bible-belt types complaining that it is sacrilegious or blasphemous or something. (Not that a lot of people that would complain about it would be likely to be purchasing DVDs of it anyway, but no company wants negative publicity about the title of a show.)

To the letter on fansubbers: I understand your frustration with this phenomenon. This goes hand in hand with the elitist attitudes of fansub "purists" who seem to think that anything that comes from an official source is inferior in some way and that persist on using incorrect translations or spellings for names. The Horo/Holo argument is the best example of this that I have seen. There is a huge number of people that persist in calling the character Horo despite the fact that the animators have stated that Holo is correct, the official translations of the light novels, manga, and anime all use Holo, and in the 2nd season there is a scene in the anime where Holo signs her name on a contract with a clear H o l o in untidy script. Yet there are still people that will insist that the official translations are all wrong. (Yet for some reason you never see anyone suggest that it should be Rawrence or Chroe... I have seen both Nola and Norra though...)
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writerpatrick



Joined: 29 Mar 2006
Posts: 580
Location: Canada
PostPosted: Fri Aug 05, 2011 4:37 pm Reply with quote
I have bought DVDs without having seen the movie, although they've generally been movies on sale, often a clearance sale. But in most cases the cover (and whatever advertising the movie had) often gives one a fairly good idea of what one can get.

I could see someone choosing fansubs instead of paying $40 an episode, but there's little point in going for fansubs when the show is available for free streaming.

And there are many who just don't have the money or may need it for other things like medical expenses or mortgage payments so it's hard to criticize someone for choosing fansubs but fansubbers themselves don't have to sub something just because it's the hottest show.
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