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View Full Version : Death of Anime Industry? Reanimation!



Morph Bark
2012-07-25, 09:04 AM
Earlier I watched this video (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gYGj7pmb93A&feature=relmfu) on YouTube, which brought up some good points and certainly did get me thinking.

Personally, I'm not very much part of the online anime community or even offline, as there are only one or two cons in my country every year and I am only going to my first one next month, possibly. Furthermore, due to anime airing on TV here needing to come via America, it takes a long while before a dubbed version of anime arrives here, which for nearly every anime is dubbed again in Dutch (Dragonball Z being the exception), so it takes a pretty long time for that to happen, which is why I usually end up watching a subbed version online. I did notice a great decline of anime on TV, but that started earlier than 2007, when Fox Kids changed to Jetix, which later changed into the Disney Channel, eliminating anime altogether, aside from rare occassions on other channels.

However, I do certainly agree that the taste in anime in the West is very different from those of Japanese fans, and I myself am not into moe at all, with rare exceptions. I find it rather sad to hear that the anime industry in the US appears to be deteriorating, which I cannot do anything about as I live on a different continent. While having watched few English dubbed anime, the newer ones have generally all been very good, which should earn the industry major points. Every time I've visited the US, I've always come home with at least one article of anime or manga (I'm looking at you, my single copies of Shounen Jump from 2003, first volume of Samurai Champloo from 2005 and first volume of Fullmetal Alchemist from 2007) and I'll certainly keep on doing that for as long as I can. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that many thousands more will do the same, whether living in the US or not.

Hazzardevil
2012-07-26, 02:08 PM
Earlier I watched this video (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gYGj7pmb93A&feature=relmfu) on YouTube, which brought up some good points and certainly did get me thinking.

Personally, I'm not very much part of the online anime community or even offline, as there are only one or two cons in my country every year and I am only going to my first one next month, possibly. Furthermore, due to anime airing on TV here needing to come via America, it takes a long while before a dubbed version of anime arrives here, which for nearly every anime is dubbed again in Dutch (Dragonball Z being the exception), so it takes a pretty long time for that to happen, which is why I usually end up watching a subbed version online. I did notice a great decline of anime on TV, but that started earlier than 2007, when Fox Kids changed to Jetix, which later changed into the Disney Channel, eliminating anime altogether, aside from rare occassions on other channels.

However, I do certainly agree that the taste in anime in the West is very different from those of Japanese fans, and I myself am not into moe at all, with rare exceptions. I find it rather sad to hear that the anime industry in the US appears to be deteriorating, which I cannot do anything about as I live on a different continent. While having watched few English dubbed anime, the newer ones have generally all been very good, which should earn the industry major points. Every time I've visited the US, I've always come home with at least one article of anime or manga (I'm looking at you, my single copies of Shounen Jump from 2003, first volume of Samurai Champloo from 2005 and first volume of Fullmetal Alchemist from 2007) and I'll certainly keep on doing that for as long as I can. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that many thousands more will do the same, whether living in the US or not.

I don't know much about this, but since FMA: Brotherhood there doesn't seem to have been any big budget anime that have been dubbed in English and that was what, a year ago?

tensai_oni
2012-07-26, 02:56 PM
I watched that video expecting a grognard complain about moe strangling the industry. Fortunately, that's not what I really saw. This guy makes some valid points, but I want to point out:

-Japan really doesn't like or care about exporting their anime much. Trigun, Cowboy Bebop, Samurai Champloo... these are the exceptions, not the rule. People who care about exporting will do it regardless of these shows bringing in a lot of income or not, as long as there is some popularity. Bebop was made in the 90s, when the anime market in the west was much smaller than it is now.
-Anime is a fading fad in the US. It was at its highest in the oughties, and now it wanes - but it will not disappear completely. It will just return to its former level of popularity, as it was in the 90s.
-Redline was expensive as all hell, and it flopped. Sad. But then, since I have yet to see anyone praise that movie for anything BUT its animation, I have a growing suspicion visuals is all it has for it.

That being said, I think the decline of anime in the US is a mostly natural process. We can still do something to fix it though, which is why comments of "I'm just a teen with no income, what can I do :(" like I see on that youtube video annoy me.

We exist in the internet era of the fundraiser. If a kickstarter to save an import company or start a new one was made, I'm sure it'd find a lot of supporters.

Bhu
2012-07-26, 08:10 PM
A great deal of the companies that translate and distribute anime here are small companies with temporary licenses, and lots of costs. They aren't doing well, and desperately need a new business model.

irenicObserver
2012-07-27, 11:21 PM
I have an idea, why not faithfully adapt them so they are actually appealing? :smalltongue:

But seriously, the decay of anime has made me very sad because it's a legit medium with some very interesting stories. Toonami is the closest thing I get to my anime dose and it's late at night and on its last legs. I want to watch these anime channels but I have to like special order them.

The closest thing I have are the streaming webiste but they are only subtitled. :smallfrown:

Terraoblivion
2012-07-28, 12:12 AM
Apart from the very real point that the legal streams just aren't very well known I think there are mostly two aspects of the fandom that causes problems. Apart from an ultimately limited size, but that's not really something people can easily change.

The first is the idea that only purchasing a physical storage medium is a "real" way of spending money and anything even slightly ephemeral gets taken as a scam, even if that is a completely standard subscription the way tv works. This means that a lot of people who know about the legal streams feel that there's something wrong with them for asking for money without providing a physical copy, despite getting access to an often very large library of shows for a very low price.

The other is an elitist obsession with video quality, which is a point the video brings up but doesn't really elaborate on. A certain subset seems obsessed with minuscule improvements in quality that the typical audience wouldn't even be able to spot and uses the slight visual inferiority of legal streams to denounce them. I can understand wanting the best product possible, but sometimes it reaches a completely unreasonable level. Even if it would only take one guy to clean up everything a legal streaming site has, which is a dubious claim but one that I've read, that might still be one more guy than they can easily afford and for something that would really only serve to appease a vocal minority. I don't think this is as big as ignorance or the feelings about physical media, but it is still a sentiment that comes up too frequently to ignore.

Finally, I think that just plain accepting that niche products in foreign languages just plain aren't economically viable for dubbing is a good idea. Even people with relatively weak language skills and low educations can get used to subs, we have all three Scandinavian countries as proof of that since dubbing is only used for entertainment aimed at pre-teen kids up here. It'll probably take a bit to get used to for many people, but it is possible. This isn't some crusade against dubbing as something for stupid people, just some thoughts of economic viability and subs are just way cheap than dubs. That is why Right Stuf released MariMite without dubs, they simply judged the show didn't have the market to afford hiring voice actors.

Overall, though, I think that legal streaming sites and expensive collector's item dvds of popular are the most realistic way forward. The former is relatively cheap on both the consumer and the company creating a viable niche while funneling some money back to the original creators in Japan, while the latter is a way to further monetize popular shows in order to finance those that underperform or outright flops. However, for it to work a larger segment of the anime fandom has to be willing to accept slightly less than perfect video quality and to pay for a product that isn't physically tangible. Without either of those happening this path isn't feasible, while relying on tv and dvd sales hasn't exactly proved itself to work either. So really, the fandom accepting a few less frills and the industry being more proactive in expanding and marketing streaming sites is the only solution I see. Something new and innovative that nobody had expected might pop up out of nowhere, but I have no idea what kind of thing it could be.

Raimun
2012-07-29, 02:10 PM
Finally, I think that just plain accepting that niche products in foreign languages just plain aren't economically viable for dubbing is a good idea. Even people with relatively weak language skills and low educations can get used to subs, we have all three Scandinavian countries as proof of that since dubbing is only used for entertainment aimed at pre-teen kids up here. It'll probably take a bit to get used to for many people, but it is possible. This isn't some crusade against dubbing as something for stupid people, just some thoughts of economic viability and subs are just way cheap than dubs. That is why Right Stuf released MariMite without dubs, they simply judged the show didn't have the market to afford hiring voice actors.


Or four nordic countries as proof. Don't know about Iceland but I guess they do it too, so possibly five. I'd also like to add that subbing is a faster process, so people can see the show that much faster, which is surely a plus.

thubby
2012-07-29, 03:03 PM
i don't think his reasons are right.
the economy tanked, lots of businesses died. its no surprise a niche entertainment market took a hit.

Dr.Epic
2012-07-29, 10:43 PM
Well I'm doing my part; I'm watching animes on Hulu and on Funimation's youtube channel.

Closet_Skeleton
2012-07-30, 03:58 AM
The other is an elitist obsession with video quality, which is a point the video brings up but doesn't really elaborate on. A certain subset seems obsessed with minuscule improvements in quality that the typical audience wouldn't even be able to spot and uses the slight visual inferiority of legal streams to denounce them. I can understand wanting the best product possible, but sometimes it reaches a completely unreasonable level.

I'd rather have a bad quality copy my computer can run smoothly than a high quality copy that makes my computer stutter. My dad has a cheap Mac he uses just to play media on our projector and it can't handle a lot of high quality and therefore 'better' stuff.

TechnOkami
2012-07-31, 04:10 AM
Well I'm doing my part; I'm watching animes on Hulu and on Funimation's youtube channel.

Likewise, but with Netflix.

Morph Bark
2012-08-02, 08:06 PM
Well I'm doing my part; I'm watching animes on Hulu and on Funimation's youtube channel.

FUNimation has a YouTube channel? Is it accessible outside of the US?