I'll Never Buy a Bandai Release Again!

I'll Never Buy a Bandai Release Again!

Can you believe that some people have actually been saying that since Bandai's announcement yesterday that Mobile Suit Gundam, now renamed First Gundam, would be released dubbed only? What is wrong with you people?

Since entering the North American Anime market not too long ago Bandai has consistently released great titles. Their dubbing has been excellent, the added features have been great, and at 3,4,5,6 and even 7 episodes per DVD the overall value of their packages has been absolutely mind boggling.

When I first read what Bandai was doing with First Gundam, I thought Bandai was making a mistake. As a fan I don't like the idea of a dub only release and I am not inclined to buy it. As editor in chief of Anime News Network, I know people will criticize Bandai for this and that fans will react harshly. But, give Bandai some credit. This was the first mistake of this kind that Bandai has made since entering the North American market (Escaflowne was a different kind of mistake, for which they can't be blamed). Everything else that Bandai has done in terms of releases has been without reproach. This mistake of Bandai's does not invalidate all the other fine work that they have done; it doesn't make them the bad guys.

Now, with yesterday and the first half of today behind us, Bandai has explained why they are forced to release First Gundam dub only. They should have explained this yesterday, and this was Bandai's only real mistake. . Bandai's choices for the moment are: No release or a dub only release. Take your pick.

Of course, not all hope is lost. Redouble your efforts but remember that the goal is no longer to convince Bandai to release a subtitled version of First Gundam; the goal is to convince Sunrise to let Bandai release a subtitled version of First Gundam. Don't scrap the petition , keep it up, and keep signing it (that is, if you want and will buy a copy of First Gundam subbed). And hope that a couple thousand signatures will help Bandai sway Sunrise.

And in defense of the First Gundam dub, all of Bandai's dubbed products in the past 2 years have been absolutely excellent, Ocean Group, The dubbing studio believed to be handling the First Gundam dub, is a great company. To top it all off Tomino Yoshiyuki, the original director of Mobile Suit Gundam, will be present during the dubbing and editing process. Correct me if I'm wrong, but the major reason fans originally hated dubs was because they sucked. Well, I don't think this one will; I think I might even pick myself up a copy…

Christopher Macdonald
Co-Editor in Chief
Anime News Network

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