Defending English Dubs!
Hello Nakama! Happy MLK Day to all us Americans.To everyone else happy monday! I figured we celebrate such a day by arguing; doesn't that sound fun? So I'm a big fan of English dubs in anime; taboo I know. I here all the complaints that J-dub watchers make and, with respect, I have to disagree.
Fair Warning: So right off the bat I plan to not make any friends as I'm going to make points that are completely subjective. Now I don't plan on changing anyone's opinion and the points I'm about to make might seem arrogant and cocky; In a way I would agree with you. Let's get to it shall we?
So sit back and relax (or don't) boys and girls because the arguing is about to commence! 3,2,1.... Lets Jam! English Dubs Have Bad Voice Acting: This is something that I hear all the time. People suggest that the acting in English dubs are just bad. Now if that's you're opinion that's fine, I'm not here to change that (kinda), Just hear me out. I can respect if you like the J-dub better but does that make the English Dubs bad?
In the case of the big three, Aniplex, Viz Media and Funimation, they all hire hard working and respectable voice actors who throw a lot of emotion in their acting. I can see you're point in the place of 4-kids that highly edits their dubs to pander to children. Not necessarily a bad thing but compared to the Japanese version of the same kids show, 4-kids really suffers. Other early dubs in the 70's and 80's such as Astro Boy, Speed Racer and even early dubs of Dragon Ball Z are also highly edited and voiced terribly.
Now we have well trained and very talented voice actors who put their heart and soul into making sure all dubs are as good as they can be.
English Dub Scripts Are Wrong: I hear this one too much. Again going back to the 70's and 80's and studios like 4-kids, scripts we're highly edited and change the original content. Talking again about the big three, they have translators and script writers who do their best to stay as close as possible to the original Japanese script.
Yes some lines are changed but that's mostly to make it easier to edit lip flaps as well as get rid of inside jokes that most western audience won't understand. As otaku's we pride ourselves in knowing and understanding Japanese culture but as someone who has watched subs, certain lines that come around (even when I get the reference) just don't stick as well as a line that was edited in the dub.
Subs aren't perfect as well. Many of times things get missed translated to a point that a character sounds like they're speaking like a caveman. A lot of subs get mistranslated just the same a dub might. Subs have to be translated just the same as dubs and can fall into the same problems that dubs do so unless you speak the language and watch it raw, you won't get the 100% real experience. English Dubs Have Terrible Voices: Yet another completely subjective opinion. Of course to say that you're opinion on this is wrong would be wrong of me but that's not what I'm trying to do, not really. All I'm trying to say that maybe you're opinion is a little misconstrued by you're surroundings.
When we hear a voice for a character we tend to associate that voice with that character. When that voice changes we automatically hate the change voice. For example: I grew up on Chris Sabat as Vegeta. When I went back to older episodes and heard Brian Drummond as Vegeta I thought it was terrible. Was Brian Drummond bad as Vegeta? Not necessarily but it was different from what I was used to say I didn't care for it. When you hear a Japanese voice actor and then an English voice actor chances are you won't dig the English voice actor too much.
Japanese voices are certainly unique. Trying to copy a voice is hard to do, so the English dub team does their best to get the voice that they best fit the part. Authenticity: It makes sense to watch a show in Japanese to stay authentic to the original source. Since most anime take place in Japan it only makes sense to watch in the language that the setting is in. What about the anime that set in Europe or America or a fictional country or world? Just because the anime originally came from Japan does that mean it's better to watch in Japanese? In my personal opinion, in the case of anime such as Black Butler, Hellsing and Baccano; maybe they should be watched in their proper language? (unless you only speak Japanese of course) In the case of Naruto, Sword Art Online and any high school anime, I can see watching in Japanese for authenticity. As far as shows like Dragon Ball and One Piece that take place in fictional versions of Earth, take your pick they both have great dubs in Japanese and English.
I'm not saying your wrong to watch a show set in an English speaking country in Japanese. I am saying that don't hate on English dubs because it's not "authentic" when you do.
To Sum It All Up! Thanks for sticking around those who did. Hope you don't hate me for what's been said.
To sum it up we're all otaku's. Whether you watch in English or Japanese anime is anime. We all still love the same great characters and stories. We laugh, we cry, we get excited all the same. We all love anime and if you're here to bash others for the dub they choose then you're nothing but a Weeb (I hate that word too, sorry if it offends anyone). Do you agree? Am I way off base or out of line? Any anime, characters or sagas you want me to defend? let me know in the comments! Thanks for reading everyone and have a great day!