Eeesh. I would’ve hated to have been in the shoes of whoever was tasked with translating this…
SPACE DANDY sounded like such a guaranteed grand slam. A new series from modern deity, Shinichiro Watanabe, presented through the bold and unprecedented platform of a simulcast dub on American television? You simply couldn’t cook up better ingredients for a current anime to reclaim that ever-elusive mainstream attention.
Problem is, this all hinged on the hopeful expectation that SPACE DANDY would be the second coming of COWBOY BEBOP - - a cool, accessible series that otaku can easily share with the norms. Instead, literally right off the launch pad, it indulges in exactly the sort of skeevy ‘fan service’ that’s turned off so many potential viewers and grounded anime in a niche that American fans desperately want to get out of.
I hate to keep wagging my finger about T&A, but I still have to say it: abrupt, in-your-face panty shots in anime are exactly as titillating as some creep at a concert sharing the upskirt photos he just took on his phone while the girls ahead of him weren’t looking. Our former contributor, Alexei , spells this out more heatedly, but I’ll keep it simple - - it’s just not hot. We're talking about a macho space opera that makes COBRA look like a class act, here.
It’s immensely frustrating. SPACE DANDY should’ve been an easy crossover sell. Now, it’s very likely turned away a lot of casual viewers: novices lured in by solid marketing who'll walk away, shaking their heads over how it’s just one of those creepyJapanese cartoons. Now, it’s another anime I’ll have to put a bunch of provisos on if I ever have the inclination to recommend it. “Oh, it’s a lushly animated show, with great comic timing, and a charming wealth of imagination… as long as you can just get past the pervy stuff.”
Watch, “Live With the Flow, Baby” and decide for yourself.
About the Author
|Tom Pinchuk’s a writer and personality with a large number of comics, videos and features like this to his credit. Visit his website - - tompinchuk.com - - and follow his Twitter: @tompinchuk|