REAL Reasons to Dislike the Original Japanese Version

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Re: REAL Reasons to Dislike the Original Japanese Version

Post by penguintruth » Mon Oct 08, 2012 2:51 pm

I always disliked the "I want to watch my anime, not read it!" arguments against subtitles.

Sure, I can understand that to a degree, subtitles can be problematic. But you learn. It's not a difficult skill, reading subtitles. It's less difficult than driving, cooking, and any number of activities ordinary people do on a regular basis.

Sure, you shouldn't have to learn a skill just to watch a TV show, which is why I'd prefer the English dub be accurate and well-acted (I actuallly LIKE English dubs, when done well). But following subtitles isn't really that big a chore. It only took me a few episodes to get it down. Back then, anime fans read subtitles all the time because there weren't a lot of dubbed anime. Strangely enough, with some companies cutting back on dubs, there's a return to those days. But I don't think we'll be seeing any subtitle-only releases of anything DB. Funimation's not going to shoot themselves in the foot like that.

Even if you like the English dub, it doesn't hurt to be exposed to the original Japanese version. It is the original show, after all.

About other things, like the voices, music, and attitude, I'm just going to stay away from that here.
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Re: REAL Reasons to Dislike the Original Japanese Version

Post by wjbraden » Mon Oct 08, 2012 3:13 pm

A couple things I disliked about the original:

1) Goku, Gohan, and Goten all being voiced by the same voice actress: I really do like Masako Nozawa voice work in the series, but I really wish they would have switched it up with Gohan and Goten. And while I do like that Goku kept his "little kid" voice as he grew older, I wish Ms Nozawa would have at least lowered the pitch of her voice for Goku.

2) The Kikuchi soundtrack was starting to get old and repetitive: Especially in the Buu arc. It really worked wonderfully in Dragon Ball and for most of DBZ, but as the series progressed from the adventure/comedy theme to heavy action and fighting, it started to feel out of place.

3) The "KKKKKKK" sounds the Japanese VA's make: I know DB isn't the only anime that has this (Ace in One Piece did this too), and I find it high irritable. I mean a few seconds of this type of grunt is okay, but for 5-10 minutes straight. No thank you.

Other than that, I find the original Japanese version very good. I also enjoy the dub too, probably about as much as the original version, if not a bit more, since it is the version I grew up with.
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Re: REAL Reasons to Dislike the Original Japanese Version

Post by VegettoEX » Mon Oct 08, 2012 3:16 pm

wjbraden wrote:And while I do like that Goku kept his "little kid" voice as he grew older, I wish Ms Nozawa would have at least lowered the pitch of her voice for Goku.
At the risk of throwing things off and getting into "defensive mode" (which I really have no intention of either doing or allowing!)...

This really isn't accurate. Nozawa's adult Goku voice is SIGNIFICANTLY different from her child Goku voice, particularly when Goku goes through some of his more advanced transformations like Super Saiyan for the first time, and then Super Saiyan 3. Even in just everyday Goku, the actual pitch of the voice is totally different from a kid, which is why you can clearly tell who's who when adult Goku and child Gohan are talking to each other (nevermind the accent differences, which further allows you to tell the difference between adult Goku and adult Gohan!).

If I were home and had immediate access to some audio, I'd whip up a short comparison clip. Just toss 'em side-by-side and you'll definitely hear a huge difference.
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Re: REAL Reasons to Dislike the Original Japanese Version

Post by DBZfan29 » Mon Oct 08, 2012 3:18 pm

Hellspawn28 wrote:From what I've seen that most Americans won't watch it because they are in sub titles. Most Americans just can't get into something that is foreign.
This is a great point to make. I've been reading the reasons and the "not wanting to read subtitles/not being able to understand one" one is recurring. Because of the show, I've decided to learn Japanese and even visit the country, so that will never affect me. Also, I tend to watch all my movies with subtitles because dialogue can sometimes be whispered, etc.
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Re: REAL Reasons to Dislike the Original Japanese Version

Post by TheBlackPaladin » Mon Oct 08, 2012 3:34 pm

penguintruth wrote:It's not a difficult skill, reading subtitles.
Not at all.

The problem, however, isn't the difficulty. The problem is--in my opinion and in the opinion of people who use this argument, anyway--enjoyability, not difficulty. It's slightly less enjoyable in that it's one more task to do, rather than just sitting back and experiencing a show. Which is how the Japanese watch anime in Japan, after all...they watch it, they don't read it. The idea behind a dub is to replicate that mode of viewing for non-Japanese speakers. Reading subtitles, while not difficult, is one more thing to do and take myself out of the moment, even if it is for just the super-short time needed to read the subtitles.

The usual counterpoint to that is, "Oh c'mon, the time needed to read subtitles once you've got the skill down isn't that long!" My counterpoint to that...um....counterpoint....

would that make it a countercounterpoint?

....is that it's not an unreasonable issue at all, especially considering there have been many instances when those who prefer subtitles have been "taken out of the moment" while watching a dub and hearing one super-brief line they don't like. A couple examples of that as it relates to DBZ and Kai...

"I hate the media!"
Time taken to deliver that line: approximately 3 seconds.

"He blew up the cargo robot!"
Time taken to deliver that line: approximately 1 second.

"Dude, mah truck!"
Time taken to deliver that line: approximately less than a second.

Those little lines are so brief, but those who prefer the subtitled version made a huge deal out of them. Why? Because it took them out of the moment. I agree, by the way...it took me out of the moment too. It's completely and entirely possible for little things to briefly derail a viewing experience, and the reactions to those super-brief lines are proof of how that's true with dubs just like it is with subs. It's not unreasonable (in my opinion) to be concerned about that. It happens to people watching subs who prefer dubs, and it also happens to people watching dubs who prefer subs.

Then of course, there's the visual component of needing to keep an eye on the bottom half of your screen for subtitles while also looking at the main visuals, usually in the center screen. Also the fact that I don't speak enough Japanese to know if the acting is good or not. They could be doing a great job, or they could be doing a terrible job, and as a non-native speaker, I wouldn't know the difference.

Are these issues small? Absolutely. Like I said, I don't dislike the Japanese version, I simply don't prefer it. If people who prefer to concentrate on the visuals have the option to do that by watching a dub, though, why wouldn't they take it? Y'know?
Hellspawn28 wrote:From what I've seen that most Americans won't watch it because they are in sub titles. Most Americans just can't get into something that is foreign.
I admit that America has occasionally had--as Jon Stewart put it--"an on-and-off love affair with xenophobia." On the other hand, I don't think we can't get into something that is foreign. After all, DBZ became a big hit, didn't it? As did many other animes, especially back in the late 90's and early 00's. We REALLY got into things that were foreign! It might also be worth a gentle reminder that we're not the only country that dubbed DBZ. Every country who got it did...even the Mexican Spanish dub, probably the most loyal dub DBZ ever got, is the preferred method of viewing for many Latin American fans. So it's not just an American thing, in my opinion...some people just like dubs. The dub just happened to be what resonated with them.
Last edited by TheBlackPaladin on Mon Oct 08, 2012 3:53 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: REAL Reasons to Dislike the Original Japanese Version

Post by Piccolo Daimao » Mon Oct 08, 2012 3:51 pm

To be honest, while I can understand why some people may be drawn out of the experience by having to read subtitles all the time in a TV series rather than even just one foreign film...I've personally never had that problem. Heck, I don't think I have hearing problems, yet I tend to just put on subtitles on TV shows and films anyway, just so I'm sure that I get everything. As in, even if I mishear something, I can just look at the subtitles and see what they're meant to be saying.
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Re: REAL Reasons to Dislike the Original Japanese Version

Post by Fizzer » Mon Oct 08, 2012 3:59 pm

People listing the different ways to view the show made me think. To me there are five main, distinct ways to experience the Dragon Ball story:

1. The manga
2. The anime
3. Kai
4. The Funimation dub
5. The Ocean dub

All of these offer considerably different experiences to each other. There's also now the Funimation dub with the original music, and Kai alone splits into four different ways, the four combinations of sub/dub and Kikuchi/Yamamoto, but the sub and and dub dialogues for Kai are very similar, and I don't think I consider it an entirely different experience if only the music changes. What makes those five special is that they all have different scripts, different voices, different music, and in some cases even different events. To me, you've sort of only fully experienced the story if you've done it in all of those ways, because I enjoy aspects of them all, and would ideally combine aspects of them all into what Dragon Ball is to me. Other people would combine them in a different way, to get "their" Dragon Ball, and some people would go by 100% one version of the story and 0% all of the others. For me, a definitive version of Dragon Ball doesn't exist.

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Re: REAL Reasons to Dislike the Original Japanese Version

Post by Rocketman » Mon Oct 08, 2012 4:00 pm

Nozawa's voice is terrible. It's a squawking, grating, godawful assault on my ears. I have basically no problem with the rest of the original dub, but at the same time, that might be just because I can't make it past all the BWAAAAKKKKKKHHHHH going on. And since she's the dominant voice of the entire series...

This is, of course, separate from my general dislike of the anime.

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Re: REAL Reasons to Dislike the Original Japanese Version

Post by OutlawTorn » Mon Oct 08, 2012 4:01 pm

I think I've explained my own opinion before, but it is primarily Masako Nozawa's screams and "foley" (other sound effects, notably the whole "kkkkk" choking sound. for a comparison of annoyance, think of the "Tasmanian Vegeta" power up during the Cell saga of the original FUNimation broadcast dub. Or, perhaps, King Kai's English voice.) which turns me off. It's just my opinion, but I think it is ludicrous that, barring Raditz, she voices every male member of Goku's family or character who happens to look like him. It's certainly not a subtitle issue as I have no problems watching that Takara Transformers episodes subbed.

In terms of the overall package, I'm not debating that the Japanese version isn't superior, it clearly is.

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Re: REAL Reasons to Dislike the Original Japanese Version

Post by VegettoEX » Mon Oct 08, 2012 4:03 pm

Fizzer wrote:People listing the different ways to view the show made me think. To me there are five main, distinct ways to experience the Dragon Ball story:
While we are an English-speaking community, I gotta toss it out there for our 50%-non-American visitor base that there are PLENTY MORE than just five ways to take in the series :).

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Re: REAL Reasons to Dislike the Original Japanese Version

Post by Hellspawn28 » Mon Oct 08, 2012 4:05 pm

I think a lot of Americans prefer watching something that is dubbed since it's easier then reading through the movie. In my film class, we had to watch The Host (2006) dubbed since most people voted on it watching it dubbed then subbed. That's why foreign movies never get big releases here in the US.

I prefer watching DB subbed since the story feels more fresh out and I'm a person who likes watching something it's in original format. I can't watch the DBZ dubbed anymore unless it's Kai. I feel like most people bash on Kai because it's not the same voices that they grew up with.
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Re: REAL Reasons to Dislike the Original Japanese Version

Post by Ninja Murasaki » Mon Oct 08, 2012 4:08 pm

masako nozawa is a great Goku, don't know what problem people have with her. Her voice fits Goku's childlike personality.

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Re: REAL Reasons to Dislike the Original Japanese Version

Post by Hellspawn28 » Mon Oct 08, 2012 4:11 pm

I personally enjoy both Masako Nozawa and Sean Schemmel voices for Goku. I prefer either one depending on the mood that I'm in. Sometimes I can't help to read the manga with Funi dub voices since I'm used to those voices given that I live in the US.
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Re: REAL Reasons to Dislike the Original Japanese Version

Post by Eire » Mon Oct 08, 2012 4:11 pm

From what I've seen that most Americans won't watch it because they are in sub titles. Most Americans just can't get into something that is foreign.

I admit that America has occasionally had--as Jon Stewart put it--"an on-and-off love affair with xenophobia." On the other hand, I don't think we can't get into something that is foreign. After all, DBZ became a big hit, didn't it? As did many other animes, especially back in the late 90's and early 00's. We REALLY got into things that were foreign!
Well, taking about the level of culture- you, as a nation, don't. That's not a conscious xenophobia, just the matter of perspective.
I think the first post meant that Americans are used to English language and not-too-foreign setting. Since USA culture is spread worldwide most of the people are exposed to at least two culture codes from the birth, thus for whole populations reading subs and understanding that actors speak different language and even "realistic" movies and series take place in sightly different reality. Meanwhile Americans are usually exposed into their domestic entertainment industry and foreign genres like Bollywood, anime or European comics occupy their niche that they probably won't leave soon.

Back on topic- as a person who had seen seven versions (Japanese with subs, Polish-French, German, 2xSpanish, Ocean, Funi, Kai) I don't get that discussion. Long live to variety!
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Re: REAL Reasons to Dislike the Original Japanese Version

Post by VegettoEX » Mon Oct 08, 2012 4:20 pm

Ninja Murasaki wrote:masako nozawa is a great Goku, don't know what problem people have with her. Her voice fits Goku's childlike personality.
Hellspawn28 wrote:I personally enjoy both Masako Nozawa and Sean Schemmel voices for Goku. I prefer either one depending on the mood that I'm in. Sometimes I can't help to read the manga with Funi dub voices since I'm used to those voices given that I live in the US.
While your contributions are welcomed and encouraged, this isn't a "what do you like" thread -- there's a very specific question being asked, and unless it's strictly adhered to, this is the type of question/thread that can run afoul pretty quickly.

And none of us want that! :)
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Re: REAL Reasons to Dislike the Original Japanese Version

Post by Rocketman » Mon Oct 08, 2012 4:36 pm

Ninja Murasaki wrote:masako nozawa is a great Goku, don't know what problem people have with her. Her voice fits Goku's childlike personality.
"Fitting personality" does not equal "enjoyable listening".

Also Goku's personality is annoying too.

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Re: REAL Reasons to Dislike the Original Japanese Version

Post by NessMudkip » Mon Oct 08, 2012 4:37 pm

The only thing I find the English version has over the Japanese is the audio quality. In that the Japanese is only in mono and the English in stereo. I would love to see the Japanese version in stereo at some point.
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Re: REAL Reasons to Dislike the Original Japanese Version

Post by Gyt Kaliba » Mon Oct 08, 2012 5:29 pm

As far as the Nozawa thing goes, it does take me a little out of the moment sometimes when she's speaking in a three way conversation with herself sometimes with Goku, Gohan, and Goten. VegettoEX is right in that you can easily tell them apart, but you can also still easily tell that it's all the same lady too, so that can be a bit jarring.

To be fair though, that's hardly a Japanese only problem, especially if we're talking about the old DBZ dub. I mean, you could give yourself alcohol poisoning by playing a rousing game of 'Pick out every Sabat role on Namek' alone, he's EVERYWHERE. So really, it's a disconnect that you have to get yourself able to deal with. Thankfully, I find fun in following voice actors and what roles they play, so it's easy enough for me - though I'll admit it's been a learning curve with what few Japanese voice actors I know.
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Re: REAL Reasons to Dislike the Original Japanese Version

Post by AgitoZ » Mon Oct 08, 2012 6:07 pm

TheBlackPaladin wrote:Like I said, I don't dislike the Japanese version, I simply don't prefer it. If people who prefer to concentrate on the visuals have the option to do that by watching a dub, though, why wouldn't they take it? Y'know?
Because I'm not getting the same experience as the Japanese?
Gyt Kaliba wrote:As far as the Nozawa thing goes, it does take me a little out of the moment sometimes when she's speaking in a three way conversation with herself sometimes with Goku, Gohan, and Goten. VegettoEX is right in that you can easily tell them apart, but you can also still easily tell that it's all the same lady too, so that can be a bit jarring.
I can see that, as it does happen to me, but I never think much of it because I usually have an easy time picking out VAs. Which is one the reasons I dislike watching newer Futurama. DiMaggio, LaMarche and LaMarr up the wazoo.
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Re: REAL Reasons to Dislike the Original Japanese Version

Post by GizmoKSX » Mon Oct 08, 2012 6:20 pm

The music is very repetitive. Sure, lots of shows rely on a few stock themes, but Dragon Ball (particularly Z) is an incredibly long-running show with lots of filler. While going through the Japanese version for the first time (which I still am, very slowly; I still have Dragon Boxes 5–7 shrinkwrapped :oops: ), I'm excited anytime a new piece of music is introduced. The Faulconer score was often used inappropriately in terms of direction (most infamously the lack of effective, silent moments), but it had a lot more variety going for it that helped to keep the show fresh.

This isn't the fault of the original show, but once you've heard Scott McNeil's Piccolo, it's hard to go back.
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