NONSENSE FROM THE NOOB: Dub or Sub?

Topic started by No_name_here on May 11, 2010. Last post by agila61 4 years, 2 months ago.
Post by YotaruVegeta (543 posts) See mini bio Level 12
Dub or sub? BOTH! ALL!
Post by Naruto79 (58 posts) See mini bio Level 3

 I got into anime with dubs but now that I’m more savvy, I prefer sub. In my perfect world, I would have to option of none, sub, dub (edits), and dub (uncut) when I buy a DVD/Blu ray. 

Post by evil_gordita (6 posts) See mini bio Level 10
 @RiverJean said:

" OH stop dubbing it. it jus sounds silly. what's wrong with sub? at least there's character behind the original voices. stop dubbing animes!! "

The comments were TL;DR for me, but skimming through I caught this and well, it really burned me up.  I'm going to make this simple, if every R1 distributor stopped dubbing the shows into English, then I will find I suddenly have more money to spend on manga, importing figures, buying games, and maybe even be able to save up for a new car.  I hope that makes my answer to Tom's question pretty clear.
 

@Papasan

said:

" For me, it's not a question of "compromise" or that anything is "missing", it's a case of there being something extra, something unnecessary, SOMETHING WRONG. A lot of people don't like green tea ice cream. Do they put gravy on it? Maybe. But probably not. Usually, they just don't eat it! Green tea is a foreign flavor, and gravy is not, but it still doesn't make the ice cream taste more familiar. Go eat a hamburger! By the same token, if you can't handle hearing wacky, unfamiliar, scary foreign languages, go watch something American!

I could have agreed with your metaphor, but by the end it sounds like you're saying that the existence of the English dub itself is the something extra, unnecessary, and wrong.  Sure, by the end of your comment you say that you don't wish English dubbing would drop off the face of the Earth entirely, but that first paragraph gives off a different impression.  You seem to imply that by watching an anime in English, I'm saying that Japanese is unfamiliar, scary, and wacky.  It's not about all of that though.  It's simply about the fact that the show is in a language that I do not understand.
 
 To me, someone who watches a show in Japanese with subtitles or in English is making a choice based on personal preference.  And that's all it is, is personal preference.  I can't  judge the quality of the translation, but I find that most shows have decent if not very good performances.  That's all I really ask for, is an honest attempt to translate something from a language I do not understand and render it into one that I do.
Post by transgojobot (122 posts) See mini bio Level 2
I watch what I like, anyway I choose and just enjoy it.
 
Truthfully, I stopped pinching my nose and turning the other cheek to English dubs over to fifteen years ago. I just didn't see the point to deny myself the opportunity to enjoy watching one of my favorite forms of entertainment in my native language.
 
However, in the 1990s, a good portion of my hard-earned money was plunked down on one or two episodes of subtitled anime on VHS for anywhere from $29.95 to $39.95. As it's been noted in this discussion already, the English productions in that era were, um, less than enjoyable. Not all of them were distractingly/laughingly bad; I did enjoy most of the cast on Pioneer's Tenchi Universe and Viz's Ranma ½.  
 
In the years since then, my tastes in anime diversified and my collection grew from subtitled VHS to bilingual DVDs. I gave the English productions another chance and I heard vast improvements. Of course, I felt some of them still suffered from either poor scripting, direction and mis-casting. But I found some real gems and began watching some shows exclusively in English.  
 
I still watch many shows in Japanese with subtitles. That's often due to the setting in which the show takes place (i.e. Rurouni Kenshin, Dai-Guard, BECK). Of course, this isn't a hard and fast rule, since I watched a titles like Kamichu! and The Girl Who Leapt Through Time in both languages. On the other hand, I watched GitS:SAC entirely in English because I loved the performances and it was just easier (WAY easier) for me to digest a lot its philosophy and politics that way. 
 
That's just a small sampling of the way I watch my anime. I don't single out either Japanese or English as being superior over one or the other. All that matters is if I like the show. 
 
Frankly, I wish I could watch shows in OTHER languages besides Japanese and English. How great would it be to watch Monster in German; Le Chevalier D'Eon in French; or Gunslinger Girl in Italian?  Heck, why couldn't there have been a multilingual dub of R.O.D TV with Cantonese, English and Japanese? Pricey as hell, but it would have been fun to listen to!
Post by agila61 (87 posts) See mini bio Level 4
@RiverJean said:
" OH stop dubbing it. it jus sounds silly. what's wrong with sub? at least there's character behind the original voices. stop dubbing animes!! "
See what I mean about sub fans who act as if it is an outrage against us for an entertainment to be made available for a broader audience. As unlikely as it sounds, there really are people who don't want that other audio track on the disc, even though nobody is forcing us listen to the dub track.
Post by Burntlettuce (155 posts) See mini bio Level 14
I don't mind dub's at all, but I find it a tad ridiculous that I have to pay extra for a series, because it's Dubbed, especially when it's dubbed terribly. 
Post by tristenkw5 (35 posts) See mini bio Level 6
You pretty much got all the points in your article. It depends on who dubbed the anime, and even then, it can be a stretch. For example, I watched the "horrible" 4Kids dub of One Piece first, and got attached to the voices. I'm not one to judge voice acting to some unrealistic degree. It takes a REALLY horrible voice to even get noticed by me. Meanwhile, all the cuts that were made were blatantly obvious,  so I knew what they WOULD be in the sub anyway, so nothing was really lost... And 4Kids is as bad as it gets. 
 
Overall, the whole "debate" is more about geek snobbery than the actual judgement. A lot of otaku need something to differentiate themselves as "ahead of the curve" when it comes to anime. What better way than to say, "I watch my shows in a language I would never put in the actual time to comprehend but will somehow be able to tell when it's well acted and will go out of my way to put down everyone else who says otherwise"?  
 
Subs have their advantages, but dubs in general don't slowly rot your brain either. Just be aware of the differences between the two versions of an anime, and I'd say you're covered. 
 
P.S. How could anyone HONESTLY defend Goku's dub voice versus his sub voice? 
Post by Gozertc (106 posts) See mini bio Level 7

Huh I thought the advent of DVD helped solve most of this, since every disc had BOTH versions of it.  The SUB/DUB war really meant something (as much as these kinds of discussions ever can) back in the VHS days.  (I feel old like I'm saying "Back in MY day.")  
 
Back then DUBS were often CHEAPER since they could slap on an audio and not have to encode a subtitle track, they could put whatever words they wanted into the character's mouths.  Which probably lead to the despisal of DUBS by the hardcore since the old DUBS could be quite horrible as they changed entire storylines to match mouth movement.  Or they looked bad pulling the Hong Kong bad syncing errors.   
 
In modern years I've noticed with the increased fanbase that the DUBS have gotten much better.  So thanks to DVD's I tend to switch back and forth to see which audiable voice annoys me LESS.  Yep, because often times there's that ONE character who bugs the hell out of you no matter which audio you listen to them in, so you'd best hear her (it's almost always a girl) in the least annoying mode possible. :p  
Post by N15PCA (611 posts) See mini bio Level 13

I did a blog post about this over a year and half ago.   Dubs Vs. Subs. 
 
Post by Papasan (160 posts) See mini bio Level 9
@evil_gordita: 
"an honest attempt to translate something from a language I do not understand and render it into one that I do. " 
 
But that's what subs are.
Post by evil_gordita (6 posts) See mini bio Level 10
@Papasan said:
" @evil_gordita: 
"an honest attempt to translate something from a language I do not understand and render it into one that I do. " 
 
But that's what subs are. "
And I don't see any reason why English dubs can't be.
Post by evil_gordita (6 posts) See mini bio Level 10
@Gozertc said:
" Huh I thought the advent of DVD helped solve most of this, since every disc had BOTH versions of it.  The SUB/DUB war really meant something (as much as these kinds of discussions ever can) back in the VHS days.  (I feel old like I'm saying "Back in MY day.")  "
It seems we've traded one argument for another.  People have shown that they dislike that they have to help pay for the cost of a dub when it's something they don't watch.  DVDs that are subtitle only can be sold at a cheaper price than a dual language DVD.  It's things like that that lead to ridiculous suggestions like offering both a (cheaper) sub only DVD and a DVD with an English dub. 
Post by Gozertc (106 posts) See mini bio Level 7

Oh just to add another bit that's probably been said, but there are plenty of people who have a hard time with subtitles in general.  For a few reasons such as:  
 
1.  Distracting.  It blocks out what's going on in a scene.  Especially in action scenes they will either miss the dialogue or the action.   
2.  Too Fast.  Lets face it sometimes characters talk fast and that dialogue flies by the screen.  
3.  Too hard to read.  I think this mostly happened in the earlier days but sometimes you still end up with poor color choices or definition of subitiles that are just plain hard to read.  
4.  Can't multi-task.  this is mostly me, since I tend to watch anime and do other things at the same time (like watch my daughter) It's nice to be able to watch the show but not have to be so focused on the screen that I can't turn my head away without pausing it or rewinding.  
 
So yeah, I swap back and forth between dubs and subs but in the end I have one hard and fast rule:  Once you've picked one in a single show.  STICK WITH IT!  Neon Genesis basically proved this to me when ADV didn't get the movies and MANGA did the new dub.  New voice actors messed me up!  Also with Slayers I've basically started the whole series over again and watched it in Japanese (thank you DVDs!) to get used to the Japanese voices so I could watch the newest series. :)  
Post by agila61 (87 posts) See mini bio Level 4
@Papasan said:

" A lot of people don't like green tea ice cream. Do they put gravy on it? Maybe. But probably not. Usually, they just don't eat it!"

This is exactly where your metaphor breaks down. If you look at the total views of Youtube/Funimation shows that stream in both dubs and subs, there are normally more views of dubs even though the subs were normally released first. 
 
And then when that clash with reality brings the metaphor into focus, it turns out to be a false analogy. The sub is the "extra on top" - the dub is an alternative choice. "A lot of people don't like green tea ice cream, even with toasted coconut on top. Do they get dark chocolate instead?" And the answer is, yes, many of them do.
Post by agila61 (87 posts) See mini bio Level 4
@Burntlettuce said:
" I don't mind dub's at all, but I find it a tad ridiculous that I have to pay extra for a series, because it's Dubbed, especially when it's dubbed terribly.  "
You have not considered that you are often paying more for a higher license fee rather than the cost of the dub?  After all, the animes that get the dubs are the ones that are considered to be most likely to sell well, and they likely cost more to acquire, or else have a higher per-unit royalty. 
 
Compare FMA:Brotherhood to Maria-sama ga Miteru. The main reason Nozomi can put out a $50MSRP, $40 RightStuf 4disc thinpack boxset is because the rights owner knew they could not demand a high license fee while Nozomi thought it would have enough of a market to recover the costs of a sub-only release -- including two localizations and extras. Meanwhile FMA:Brotherhood got on television, which already covered the cost of the dub - any price premium is Funimation's judgement of what the best price point is for the release based on its guesstimate of market potential. 
Post by Swayhaven (6 posts) See mini bio Level 3
DUB FTW! I don't care if it's entirely accurate, but I like hearing voices in my native language.
Post by agila61 (87 posts) See mini bio Level 4
@Swayhaven said:
" DUB FTW! I don't care if it's entirely accurate, but I like hearing voices in my native language. "
And subs are also normally different from the original translation of the script, when needed to avoid lines getting long.
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