CAA Radio – Episode 23 – “I Listen for the Economicsâ€Â

The anime/manga/forums podcast

CAA Radio – Episode 23 – “I Listen for the Economicsâ€

Postby Link Antilles » Tue Apr 06, 2010 5:42 pm

In this show, we are joined by another special guest, discuss comics and animation from around the world, and talk economics!

You can directly download the show from this link: Right Click and Save As. Or stream the show from here.


Enjoy!
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Postby Mr. Hat'n'Clogs » Tue Apr 06, 2010 5:48 pm

YES!!

coughcough.

I'm glad to see you guys have a new show.

Edit: Listening to the show at the moment, but I know Hetalia is called an ONA, or Original Net Animation, and Eureka Seven IS on Crunchyroll both subbed and dubbed.
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Postby blkmage » Tue Apr 06, 2010 9:40 pm

Man, I need to start taking notes to remember things that I wanted to say. Oh well. Eden of the East and Spice and Wolf are two very good shows that everyone should watch.
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Postby TheSubtleDoctor » Wed Apr 07, 2010 7:04 am

Good show this month, all. Nice debut, Kitsune. Now I am even more excited for Eden of the East.

I want to comment on the discussion of Mr. HatnClog's question for a bit. The panel seemed of the opinion that someone desiring that a live-action adaptation of a particular anime would create popularity for that anime, or anime in general, does so many times in order to feel more socially acceptable. The panel also seemed to agree that this would be a bad thing because anime is "cooler" because so few people are into it. Considering the state of the anime market (here and in Japan)I believe that this way of thinking is fundamentally misguided, Let's go with the idea that the less people like anime, the cooler it is: if anime gets any cooler, it will die. The reason we have so many moe shows (and other otaku-pandering shows) is because they are safe: the Japanese feel like they can sell just enough to make do. Many are scared to attempt a project with a broader appeal because it might lose money. For example: as great as Durarara!! is, acording to ANN, who recently went to Tokyo to cover the Anime Fair, there was not one single scrap of Durarara!! merchandise. So, I believe we should want anime to garner as many fans as possible. A greater income stream to Japan equals bigger, better (more broadly appealing) anime projects with more talented people working on them (instead of the industry losing them to video games). So, I am praying that James Cameron follows through on his desire to make Battle Angel Alita. The technology is there to do justice to the source material, and people will probably see it b/c it is a fairly western-friendly story (plus Cameron is hot right now). This way, the anime company will get money and pay talented people to make good shows.

A second point: I think having a rated-R anime adaptation would be a good thing. First of all, it avoids Kitsune's doomsday scenario of America embracing the Pikachu beanie. An FMA movie would not be marketed like that. I mean, people are always complaining about the convention scene and the teenage anime crowd. A good movie adaptation of FMA, Cowboy Bebop or Baccano! that happened to be rated-R would spark a community with a completely different vibe. You could potentially have an intelligent discussion with a co-wroker about FMA.

Second, I don't think we give American film-makers enough credit in terms of what they can do with technology. Do we seriously think that there aren't smart enough, talented enough people to make Firo's finger re-attaching look good? I mean, witht he CG advancements shown in Transformers and Avatar, I think anime fans can rest easy on this one. Now, will the "finger scene" look just like the anime? No. But it doesn't have to because it won't be replacing the anime, just advertising it and letting the writer and director tell their own story.

Third, films use stylization all the time. There are a myriad of ways to imply violence without being too graphic. Again, will it look just like the anime? No.

I agree with you all about the Japanese comedy not translating well. But this is to be expected. Of course, film-makers would have to take the spirit of the comedy and do their own thing with it. I see nothing wrong with a movie adaptation adapting the comedic elements to our own culture. It just has to happen that way for the adaptation to sell well.

Also, in the way of constructive criticism: is therte a way to edit out all the awkward pauses, silences and "...yeeeaaaahhh..."'s? I think that would help the show.

Having said all that, let me say again that I enjoyed this episode very much! It's always a fun two hours.
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Postby blkmage » Wed Apr 07, 2010 9:29 am

Durarara!! is probably not the best example to use, since it's relatively new, TIAF is a trade show, it's not as easily "merchandisable" (figures, character songs, etc.) and it's the most successful show this year so far.

But more to your point, this is a familiar scenario that's been played out by video games. Video games have great stories, so why don't we adapt them to live-action films so they will gain greater social acceptance? Well, that didn't work out very well because they have all been garbage for a variety of reasons. But, gaming has become more mainstream over the past few years on its own.

Now, I understand that it's not entirely analogous. After all, the cultural barrier is probably the biggest challenge. But, if anime and manga and the like are going to gain broader appeal, it won't be because of live-action films. It will and needs to do so on the particular strengths that are unique to its medium.
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Postby Link Antilles » Wed Apr 07, 2010 9:33 am

TheSubtleDoctor (post: 1386551) wrote:Also, in the way of constructive criticism: is therte a way to edit out all the awkward pauses, silences and "...yeeeaaaahhh..."'s? I think that would help the show.


I was a little bit busy this weekend to re-listen to it, but I'll do some editing on the next show. Thanks for the feedback!:thumb:
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Postby TheSubtleDoctor » Wed Apr 07, 2010 9:43 am

blkmage (post: 1386560) wrote:Durarara!! is probably not the best example to use, since it's relatively new, TIAF is a trade show, it's not as easily "merchandisable" (figures, character songs, etc.) and it's the most successful show this year so far.
I am glad it's doing well. I wasn't referring to merchandise located inside the show (TIAF was just the pretext for the staff being in Tokyo). I meant that there was no merch in the entire city. No Baccano! or Durarara!! merchandise was found over the course of 8 days stay in Shibuya and scouring every shop (even in Akihaburo). Not a good sign for the "most successful show" of 2010 =(.
But, if anime and manga and the like are going to gain broader appeal, it won't be because of live-action films. It will and needs to do so on the particular strengths that are unique to its medium.
I don't disagree with this at all. In fact, this is the ideal scenario that we all ought to wish for. However, as you know, the market is in such a dire state that I'd welcome anything that would help. And, not only was I trying to say that it would be a good thing, contra the opinion of the panel, but that a successful, non-sucky American live-action adaptation is possible in principle, also contra the panel.
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Postby mechana2015 » Wed Apr 07, 2010 10:54 am

TheSubtleDoctor (post: 1386551) wrote:
A second point: I think having a rated-R anime adaptation would be a good thing. First of all, it avoids Kitsune's doomsday scenario of America embracing the Pikachu beanie. An FMA movie would not be marketed like that. I mean, people are always complaining about the convention scene and the teenage anime crowd. A good movie adaptation of FMA, Cowboy Bebop or Baccano! that happened to be rated-R would spark a community with a completely different vibe. You could potentially have an intelligent discussion with a co-wroker about FMA.


Actually I wasn't concerned with getting an R rating, I was concerned with getting HIGHER than an R rating. Due to the typical age of anime characters being pretty low, FMA's scenes in particular when ED and Al are hurt (they could be degored I guess). I guess I was thinking that melting a
ten year olds arm off and completely vaporizing an eight or nine year old on screen might make the MPAA a bit antsy and give it an NC-17.
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Postby TheSubtleDoctor » Wed Apr 07, 2010 11:41 am

mechana2015 (post: 1386581) wrote:I guess I was thinking that melting a ten year olds arm off and completely vaporizing an eight or nine year old on screen might make the MPAA a bit antsy and give it an NC-17.


Yeah, that would probably have to be altered (although w/ CGI, I think they could stylistically render such a scene w/o making it a gorefest) because movies rated higher than R aren't marketable to the masses (remember: popularity is our goal!). Recall, also, that we are talking about an adaptation. Again, such an adaptation would not be 100% faithful to every frame of the anime. But this is OK because you have seen the anime, and the adaptation might turn other people on to the source material. Would that be a bad thing? I submit that it would not, since more money going to the Japanese for FMA means that they are more likely to engage in projects that are more like FMA than Kiss x Sis (one of the spring's new shows). A good thing, IMO.
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Postby thejackal221 » Wed Apr 07, 2010 12:14 pm

I just had a few things I wanted to say about your post Doctor.
TheSubtleDoctor (post: 1386551) wrote:The panel also seemed to agree that this would be a bad thing because anime is "cooler" because so few people are into it. Considering the state of the anime market (here and in Japan)I believe that this way of thinking is fundamentally misguided, Let's go with the idea that the less people like anime, the cooler it is: if anime gets any cooler, it will die. The reason we have so many moe shows (and other otaku-pandering shows) is because they are safe: the Japanese feel like they can sell just enough to make do. Many are scared to attempt a project with a broader appeal because it might lose money. For example: as great as Durarara!! is, acording to ANN, who recently went to Tokyo to cover the Anime Fair, there was not one single scrap of Durarara!! merchandise. So, I believe we should want anime to garner as many fans as possible.

I completely agree that more people are needed to keep the industry alive but we also need to remember that a lot of fans aren't supporting the industry as they should. Despite the industry warning, and fans like me and others, telling, yelling begging, screaming, and threatening, people are still pirating anime that has been released in the U.S.
TheSubtleDoctor (post: 1386551) wrote:
A second point: I think having a rated-R anime adaptation would be a good thing. First of all, it avoids Kitsune's doomsday scenario of America embracing the Pikachu beanie. An FMA movie would not be marketed like that. I mean, people are always complaining about the convention scene and the teenage anime crowd. A good movie adaptation of FMA, Cowboy Bebop or Baccano! that happened to be rated-R would spark a community with a completely different vibe. You could potentially have an intelligent discussion with a co-wroker about FMA.
An example of this working would be Kill Bill and The Matrix. While it didn't work as well as a full adaptation could have, it did open people to anime more.

TheSubtleDoctor (post: 1386551) wrote:I agree with you all about the Japanese comedy not translating well. But this is to be expected. Of course, film-makers would have to take the spirit of the comedy and do their own thing with it. I see nothing wrong with a movie adaptation adapting the comedic elements to our own culture. It just has to happen that way for the adaptation to sell well.

Sadly, I don't know if this would work as well. I am mainly referring to DragonBall: Revolution. I personally feel it captured the anime feel really well. This though caused major problems in the box office because it was awkward to people who don't watch anime because they just didn't get it.
Now i am not saying that an anime adaptation would be bad. But who makes it will whether its good or not.
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Postby Fish and Chips » Wed Apr 07, 2010 12:49 pm

If I somehow communicated that Anime culture is somehow "Better" being underground, I apologize. I don't think that, and would very much enjoy for Anime and Manga to receive a boost in popularity. However, our criticism was that the sort of people who champion these sorts of adaptions are the ones who want for it to instantly become socially acceptable overnight, which isn't something I think would be plausible or a good idea. If we want to set Anime in a more pervasive light, I think it should be on the strengths of the medium itself set in its own medium, not an adaption to another format.

We rally against the underground, except that we fail to pick up on the idea that its because we're underground that affords us a degree of protection from scrutiny, scrutiny that could actually damage the image of Anime considerably. We facepalm at the thought of people dismissing all Anime as pornography, when really we should be thankful that's where their attention ends. If they knew what was really out there, the brush people already paint broadly with when it comes to Anime would be tinted an even darker color. A female reporter on CNN recently flipped out after discovering a commercially available "Rape fantasy" game on store shelves; a game I should mention I last heard of four years ago on another board. Reporters are supposed to deliver the latest news to the general public; if this is the latest of news, I shudder to think of a more up-to-date following of the excesses of Japanese culture.

As for the safe Otaku market, the prosperity of Anime and Manga in Japan is little dependent on its success abroad, but that's Blkmage's territory. Talk to him about it. He has graphs, even.

The problem with movie ratings is that they automatically narrow your audience. Yes, there are a lot of good movies that are also R rated, just as there are a lot of terrible movies that somehow scraped by with a PG13, but the PG13 is more immediately acceptable and accessible to the public eye. "Based on a Japanese comic your kid reads, rated R" is not a very appealing tag line. And if they're going to water it down for a better rating, who knows what else they might have to cut. FullMetal Alchemist is 25+ volumes long. How would you propose they shorten it to the measly maybe three hours people might be willing to spend in an evening at the movie theater? This is assuming they can already somehow stylistically gloss over the fact that two twelve-year-olds are seriously attempting to bring someone back from the dead to horrifying consequences, then market it to a wide enough audience to receive acceptance.

Anime being popular would be nice, but we should work intelligently towards this goal, not impulsively. Teach someone how to swim and they'll cross the sea on their own; throw them in the ocean and they'll drown.
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Postby TheSubtleDoctor » Wed Apr 07, 2010 1:21 pm

Fish and Chips (post: 1386604) wrote:If I somehow communicated that Anime culture is somehow "Better" being underground, I apologize. I don't think that, and would very much enjoy for Anime and Manga to receive a boost in popularity. However, our criticism was that the sort of people who champion these sorts of adaptions are the ones who want for it to instantly become socially acceptable overnight, which isn't something I think would be plausible or a good idea. If we want to set Anime in a more pervasive light, I think it should be on the strengths of the medium itself set in its own medium, not an adaption to another format.
Alright, then we actually are in agreement here. I am no champion of anime being socially acceptable just so that something I enjoy will be popular. The main reason that I think an adaptation might do some good is because of the money it could make from itself and the newly sought-after source material. I just want our hobby to be well-funded. I don't want it to go away, man!
We rally against the underground, except that we fail to pick up on the idea that its because we're underground that affords us a degree of protection from scrutiny, scrutiny that could actually damage the image of Anime considerably. We facepalm at the thought of people dismissing all Anime as pornography, when really we should be thankful that's where their attention ends. If they knew what was really out there, the brush people already paint broadly with when it comes to Anime would be tinted an even darker color. A female reporter on CNN recently flipped out after discovering a commercially available "Rape fantasy" game on store shelves]four years ago[/I] on another board. Reporters are supposed to deliver the latest news to the general public; if this is the latest of news, I shudder to think of a more up-to-date following of the excesses of Japanese culture.
You are preaching to the choir, bub. See my Kiss x Sis reference above. *shudder* But with more and more interest, surely people will be more discerning because they will actually have to learn about it. I think that maybe people paint with such a broad brush just because they don't have to take seriously/learn about this little niche weird cultural item.
As for the safe Otaku market, the prosperity of Anime and Manga in Japan is little dependent on its success abroad, but that's Blkmage's territory. Talk to him about it. He has graphs, even.
There are roughly 300,000 Japanese people who buy most of the moe, otaku-pandering shows as they come out. Because of the fact that most TV shows start in the red (from buying the TV time), they need these kinds of numbers in (friggan expensive) DVD sales to sustain the studios. This is the explanation for the massive spike in moe in the last few years. It is safe.

My own point was that, sure the Japanese don't care much about our market now; however, if a big enough buzz is created and enough money is generated (Americans love their movies, ya know) it is possible to make them take just a little notice, I think.
The problem with movie ratings is that they automatically narrow your audience. Yes, there are a lot of good movies that are also R rated, just as there are a lot of terrible movies that somehow scraped by with a PG13, but the PG13 is more immediately acceptable and accessible to the public eye. "Based on a Japanese comic your kid reads, rated R" is not a very appealing tag line. And if they're going to water it down for a better rating, who knows what else they might have to cut. FullMetal Alchemist is 25+ volumes long. How would you propose they shorten it to the measly maybe three hours people might be willing to spend in an evening at the movie theater? This is assuming they can already somehow stylistically gloss over the fact that two twelve-year-olds are seriously attempting to bring someone back from the dead to horrifying consequences, then market it to a wide enough audience to receive acceptance.
So you're saying that movies based on kids comics wouldn't sell? You're point about PG-13 vs. R is well-taken, though. And of course you don't make the whole FMA series in one shot (tho I think you could swing a one-shot Baccano! movie), but you make one story and then see how sales go.
Anime being popular would be nice, but we should work intelligently towards this goal, not impulsively. Teach someone how to swim and they'll cross the sea on their own; throw them in the ocean and they'll drown.
As I said to blkmage, I agree here. The scenario of anime becoming popular on its own merits is, of course, the ideal situation. I was just struck by the fact that the panel was so seemingly antagonistic towards even the possibility of this kind of thing. I think it could work, and, if it did, that would be good for everyone.
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Postby blkmage » Wed Apr 07, 2010 2:58 pm

So first, some amateur analysis of Durarara!!'s place in the market. In terms of DVD sales, 5k is about the break-even point and 10k is really good for most shows. DRRR has been pushing 20k copies for each volume and has placed on the top sales charts past the first week. That is really good. Comparable shows are Kanon, Macross F, and Clannad. DRRR's sales easily put it well into top 10 territory based on historical data.

Like I said before, it's still relatively new and doesn't lend itself to merchandising. It's not shounen, so no toys. It doesn't have the moe moe kyun~, so no figures. It doesn't have robots, so no models. The type of story it is would make character songs weird.

But we can still tell it's super-popular. How? A few weeks after it started airing, six out of the seven available volumes of the light novels got propelled up to the top ten sales list for books for a bit. Also, the Baccano DVDs didn't do very well at all, so that's self-explanatory. People like the light novels though, but I'd assume you generally don't merchandise book series.

[quote="TheSubtleDoctor (post: 1386612)"]My own point was that, sure the Japanese don't care much about our market now]
This sort of thing has already happened before, in the late 90s/early 2000s. In fact, it's probably the thing that ultimately lead to GONZO's demise this past year.

Back then, anime was the Next Big Thing. GONZO was an up and coming studio and went out of its way to try and appeal to audiences outside of the core otaku market, and in particular, foreigners. In doing so, they went for more experimental shows and chose to finance those shows on their own, without the help of a production committee.

Unfortunately they gained a reputation for screwing up endings and other things that ruined their shows and no one wanted to buy them. Since they financed the shows largely on their own, they also carried the entire burden of the failures of those shows. They slowly collapsed over the last few years until they just stopped producing shows late last year.

The combination of GONZO's focus on foreign and mainstream markets and their subsequent failure is probably enough to deter any production committees from going down that same route. It is a road fraught with risk and they are very risk-averse.

Finally, the comparison between FMA and Kiss x Sis isn't particularly relevant. For one thing, anything big enough to be adapted into a North American live-action film is not in any danger of being replaced by Kiss x Sis. That is, those are not the sorts of shows that are squeezed out by moe or whatever.

--

Oh yeah, anime production. Scenario by Nisioisin (Bakemonogatari, Katanagatari, Medaka Box), production by Production I.G. (Eden of the East, Kimi ni Todoke, GITS), music by Tenmon (5 Centimeters per Second, ef, The Place Promised in Our Early Days).
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Postby blkmage » Thu Apr 08, 2010 5:51 am

Oh yeah, a final note on merchandising as an indicator of mainstream popularity that came to me this morning: for a show like DRRR, it really isn't. It's the otaku types who buy merchandise for shows like this, not the mainstream audience. For instance, I liked Haruhi. I do not like it enough to buy an SOS-dan armband.

If you look at merchandising, you have the stuff that only otaku would buy (character singles, figures). You also have things like models, which are pretty much bought by hardcore mecha fans. Then you have toys and stuff for shounen shows like FMA or Naruto. Outside of those cases, your average person won't be picking up any merchandise.

And in the case of DRRR, the website doesn't really have much in the way of pushing merchandise (as opposed to say, K-ON!), so it's likely that they aren't even making anything. Rather, they're pushing the DVDs and books, which mainstream audiences are more likely to buy.
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Postby TheSubtleDoctor » Thu Apr 08, 2010 8:59 am

*nods* I see, I see.

Thank you for enlightening me, magey. I appreciate it. It is good to know that DRRR is doing so incredibly well. I'd love it if you posted some links to that information. The people @ ANN just seem to be gloomier; plus, they have the same wrong idea about merch I had.

It's such a shame about Gonzo. Even though much of their stuff wasn't 10/10, I liked a lot of it. Are they still around in some capacity?

Now, as far as Kiss x Sis and its ilk go, I have heard that more shows like this have been made since the decline of the anime market in Japan. So, even if they aren't bumping FMA-like shows off the air, they are bumping something. Studios are choosing to make more of them, and I believe that the reason for that is that they believe that they have a handle on that demographic.

Question for you, blkmage: If some promising American filmmaker made a good movie adaptation of, say, Baccano! that made ridiculous money, how, in your opinion, would the anime powers-that-be in Japan react?
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Postby Fish and Chips » Thu Apr 08, 2010 10:08 am

TheSubtleDoctor (post: 1386612) wrote:Alright, then we actually are in agreement here. I am no champion of anime being socially acceptable just so that something I enjoy will be popular. The main reason that I think an adaptation might do some good is because of the money it could make from itself and the newly sought-after source material. I just want our hobby to be well-funded. I don't want it to go away, man!
That's not a bad sentiment to have, I suppose. Most likely, however, the profits from a well-received film adaption would go on to directly benefit the filmmakers, not the Anime and Manga industry, or at least certainly not the foreign distributors. It's possible film buzz could generate temporary interest in the specific work being adapted, but such things tend to be very short-lived by definition.
TheSubtleDoctor (post: 1386612) wrote:There are roughly 300,000 Japanese people who buy most of the moe, otaku-pandering shows as they come out. Because of the fact that most TV shows start in the red (from buying the TV time), they need these kinds of numbers in (friggan expensive) DVD sales to sustain the studios. This is the explanation for the massive spike in moe in the last few years. It is safe.
I am already well aware of how the market panders and why it is successful. The problem is critical acclaim outside that comfortable niche will not suddenly make it not safe to produce shows for that demographic. Mainstream success is not something that every show that tries to be different, innovative, or better than its fellow entertainment can achieve, and I think most studios would have a solid grasp of this. At best, we'd have a temporary resurgence of shows outside the Otaku demographic, the majority of which would be varying degrees of shallow and uninspired drivel riding the coattails of already proved popular concepts, and subsequently returning to their familiar grounds after a single failure, or even after moderate but not enough success.

I have some choice words to say about Gonzo, most of them not suitable for a board such as this. However, after being swamped in commercial failure, what do they decide to churn out? Strike Witches. Which actually goes on to become moderately popular, and subsequently taken away from the dying company and given to someone else. Yeah.

So I apologize if I tend to come off as strongly cynical concerning the Anime market in Japan]I am[/I].[quote="TheSubtleDoctor (post: 1386612)"]My own point was that, sure the Japanese don't care much about our market now]Our hypothetical adaption project would have to garner an immense amount of publicity to do anything near this, on top of which the film would actually have to be kind of good.

Concerning a possible American Baccano! movie, this raises a different complication altogether. Baccano! is a light novel, something that has never historically sold well in the United States, or really outside of Japan and the Asian continent as far as I can tell. The prospective film wouldn't be based in the Anime that's readily available, but the light novel nobody's read, and can't read until some daring publisher takes the financial leap to provide it, which would be an enormous gamble on their part.
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Postby TheSubtleDoctor » Thu Apr 08, 2010 12:28 pm

Very well-thought-out points, Fish.

What a shameful thing to do to Gonzo, btw.

Yeah, it's indisputable that it will always be safe to pander, but I hope that one day it will be more safe not to pander, whatever means are necessary to achieve this state of affairs. From what I understand (ANN TIAF podcast and blog), there are actually a few small signs that things could be starting to turn around in this area.

Question for you Fish: What are you hoping/expecting out of the (rumored) Battle Angel movie in terms of affect on the industry?
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Postby mechana2015 » Thu Apr 08, 2010 1:25 pm

TheSubtleDoctor (post: 1386843) wrote:
Question for you Fish: What are you hoping/expecting out of the (rumored) Battle Angel movie in terms of affect on the industry?


I'm fairly sure you meant this for me,since I'm the person that's usually mentioning BAA on the show.

I expect it to fail horribly at this point, if it ever gets released at all. Last I heard, James Cameron had the data for it, but he's more focused on Avatar 2 now, since blue cat aliens are apparently made of money... so I don't expect to even see it anytime soon for starters.

The second issue is that any adaption of GUNNM with a rating lower than R will definitely be decried by the fans of the series, and any adaption that stays accurate to it won't be palatable to anyone who can't stand AVP2 levels of violence. Basic example: The main character's first major attack she learns, and one she uses through the whole series, causes a person's brain (and head) to explode. Drop that attack, and the movie isn't really BAA, keep it, and you're looking at R for sure. In addition, adding 3D, as Cameron is wont to do would amp the effects up further. I mean, I love the series, but this is like making a live action Fist of the North Star.

My third issue with it is that I actually don't think graphics technology is up to snuff yet. BAA is Blade Runner, combined with Predator, Terminator, and Speed Racer. Making it look good enough to pass muster is going to cost a ton of money, even with virtual sets. Unlike Avatar or LOTR or any other series with lots of CGI characters, there are no 'standard production models' in the series, and probably 90% of the on screen actors would have to be totally unique CG models, almost all the time, including background characters, unless you went for a deep costuming and prosthetic budget, even if they only converted volume 1.

The series actually even failed as an anime, and that's the medium I could see it being able to survive in, so consider me sadly skeptical.

As for it's effect on the industry, if made right, and somehow marketed well, I could see it possibly having a market, but a small one, and not benefiting the anime market at all. The series is too unique to represent the anime market as a whole, and too grimdark and violent to have a wide ranging impact, especially to the positive side. If dumbed down it could get a better response, but anyone that tried to use it as a jumping off point would probably be more than a little put off/scared by the actual comic.
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Postby ChristianKitsune » Thu Apr 08, 2010 2:21 pm

Interesting discussion, boys. I really am not as versed in the historical and economical issues that anime is dealing with at the moment. (I watch Spice and Wolf for economics XD )
but if what everyone is saying is true, then it does appear that anime is kinda of either on a downward slope, or is kinda stagnating in its own moe/fanservice muck right? Maybe Durarara and more anime like it can kind of pull it out of the mire? I still have yet to watch more of Durarara of course, but it definitely felt different during the first two episodes that I did see.

Then again, so did Spice and Wolf and other titles....

Where do you guys think anime should go from here?
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Postby Mr. Hat'n'Clogs » Thu Apr 08, 2010 3:07 pm

So, thank you TheSubtleDoctor for making the point I was trying to get at, except put much better than me and my horrible point-making skills can do.
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Postby blkmage » Thu Apr 08, 2010 3:12 pm

GONZO is still around doing animation work for other studios but no longer producing shows on their own, at least for now. Their downfall (in numbers) is summarized here. I get sales numbers from this guy who does the arduous work of going through the Oricon charts. All my other information is hidden away on the internet somewhere, spread across blogs, comments, and twitter posts with the anime blogger cabal.

Actually, Strike Witches was not really taken away from them so much as their financial situation likely forced them to hand it off to someone else. Strike Witches was a 2008 title so they finished that. They had basically collapsed by the end of 2009, when they had to hand off the second half of Saki to Picture Magic. Obviously, they weren't in a position to do a Strike Witches 2, and so that got picked up by AIC.

An interesting point of discussion over the last few months among the anime blags has been what mainstream anime currently looks like and what it has historically been. It is not what you might imagine.

As it turns out, there has never been any mainstream acceptance of the sort of shows we imagine being mainstream. Anime has always been about otaku-pandering. It's just that the things that otaku like has changed over the last few decades. Back then, it was mecha. Today, it's uguu~. Further, actual mainstream anime consists of kids shows or toy and video game shows. We're talking Crayon Shin-chan, Doraemon, Beyblade, Bakugan, etc. The sorts of shows that we like appeal to mainstream adult audiences.

That's not to say the sorts of shows that we're interested aren't popular. Stuff like Tokyo Magnitude 8.0 and Eden of the East drew huge TV ratings. One of these shows did well in sales and the other did horribly. Why? It's a mystery. The problem is that no one knows how to reliably monetize mainstream adult audiences. And it's because of this that mainstream audiences are a huge risk.

It's not like those shows are anomalies either. There's an entire timeslot (noitaminA) dedicated to appeal to mainstream adult audiences which got expanded this year. There's also a new timeslot for original anime productions (Anime no Chikara). noitaminA's been running since 2005. What did they find? The trend was really awesome TV ratings, bad DVD sales.

So in my view, the problem isn't a lack of an audience or not making things that people want to watch. The problem is figuring out how to reliably turn the audience that is already there and enjoying shows that we like into monies. And that is a far safer, more reliable, and easier task than relying on foreign fans.
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Postby goldenspines » Thu Apr 08, 2010 6:05 pm

Ah, I finally get to listen. :3 Great show guys.

Yay CK! 8D You bring, and will continue to bring (I hope), the cuteness and wonderfulness to the dark world of guns, action, and ugly men sitting around a table gambling (known as the podcast). You managed to mention Chi's Sweet Home, Aishiteruze Baby, and a passing reference to DN Angel. You are my hero. <3

I recall seeing the first episode of Spice and Wolf (subbed) when it was first released and pretty much had the same reaction Fish had. I should go back to check the rest of it out, I suppose. >_>




[SIZE="1"]Haha! *goes to think of more topic ideas to post in the topic circuit thread*[/SIZE]
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Postby bigsleepj » Fri Apr 09, 2010 10:14 am

Great show, guys, though I'm sad my thread was not discussed. And glad to know some Americans know Top Gear. :)
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Postby TheSubtleDoctor » Fri Apr 09, 2010 10:22 am

mechana2015 (post: 1386859) wrote:I'm fairly sure you meant this for me,since I'm the person that's usually mentioning BAA on the show.

Yeah, sorry mech. Although feel free to comment, Fish.
I expect it to fail horribly at this point, if it ever gets released at all. Last I heard, James Cameron had the data for it, but he's more focused on Avatar 2 now, since blue cat aliens are apparently made of money... so I don't expect to even see it anytime soon for starters.
Boo!
The second issue is that any adaption of GUNNM with a rating lower than R will definitely be decried by the fans of the series, and any adaption that stays accurate to it won't be palatable to anyone who can't stand AVP2 levels of violence. Basic example: The main character's first major attack she learns, and one she uses through the whole series, causes a person's brain (and head) to explode. Drop that attack, and the movie isn't really BAA, keep it, and you're looking at R for sure. In addition, adding 3D, as Cameron is wont to do would amp the effects up further. I mean, I love the series, but this is like making a live action Fist of the North Star.
That is true]My third issue with it is that I actually don't think graphics technology is up to snuff yet. BAA is Blade Runner, combined with Predator, Terminator, and Speed Racer. Making it look good enough to pass muster is going to cost a ton of money, even with virtual sets. Unlike Avatar or LOTR or any other series with lots of CGI characters, there are no 'standard production models' in the series, and probably 90% of the on screen actors would have to be totally unique CG models, almost all the time, including background characters, unless you went for a deep costuming and prosthetic budget, even if they only converted volume 1.[/quote]I actualy disagree with you here. Cameron himself has claimed that the technology is now finally up to snuff for realizing his vision. He would know (I hope).
The series actually even failed as an anime, and that's the medium I could see it being able to survive in, so consider me sadly skeptical.
Don't ever mention that sad OVA again, sir. Unacceptable =). Yeah, that almost made me refuse to read the manga.
As for it's effect on the industry, if made right, and somehow marketed well, I could see it possibly having a market, but a small one, and not benefiting the anime market at all. The series is too unique to represent the anime market as a whole, and too grimdark and violent to have a wide ranging impact, especially to the positive side. If dumbed down it could get a better response, but anyone that tried to use it as a jumping off point would probably be more than a little put off/scared by the actual comic.
I defer to you here, since it has been years since I've read the books.
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Postby mechana2015 » Fri Apr 09, 2010 11:41 am

TheSubtleDoctor (post: 1387015) wrote:That is true]

Could be done, but that wouldn't necessarily make it a critical success or give it a foothold in the American Cultural lexicon, but if that were the case I'd suspect that we'd need a director other than Cameron for this since he really doesn't handle things the way that Tarantino does, so as long as Cameron has it... we'll have to see. He'd have to go back to Terminator in mindset... which is possible, since he's also apparantly working on Terminator 5 (?!). I guess I'm just worried due to some rather blatant writing issues in Avatar, and Cameron being listed as the writer. BAA is very much about the story, and I'm not too keen on him messing with it.

I might also be keeping my expectations low so I can attempt to enjoy whatever does come out.

TheSubtleDoctor (post: 1387015) wrote: I actually disagree with you here. Cameron himself has claimed that the technology is now finally up to snuff for realizing his vision. He would know (I hope).


I would hope so, but I'm not at all interested in seeing the darn thing in the current 3D obsession, so I'm more interested in how they're going to handle the whole cybernetics deal and all the CGI for that, and the setting, considering every single cyborg is different. Also, the last time a director said they 'had the technology', we got Jar Jar Binks... :[

TheSubtleDoctor (post: 1387015) wrote:I defer to you here, since it has been years since I've read the books.

The books are like very little else that I've seen in any other comic market, especially since it falls definitely in the seinen side of the market. It's violent, prominently features philosophical debate, especially about what it means to 'be' and just generally doesn't reflect the mass anime market much. It's more on lines with 20th Century Boys, Baccano, Akira (manga) and Cowboy Bebop. Theres really no 'next' point to jump to after these since they really transcend genre and point to manga/anime as a medium for storytelling, rather than a place to find a certain kind of story.
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Postby ich1990 » Sat Apr 10, 2010 11:58 am

The XD is better than a Glock? Those are fighting words.

Top Gear is indeed awesome.

Liam Neeson should be doing any and all narration.

An anime show about economics? I really must check this out.

Great show, fellows.
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Postby TheSubtleDoctor » Tue Apr 13, 2010 7:16 pm

I found this link relevant to the above discussion.
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Postby mechana2015 » Wed Apr 14, 2010 2:16 pm

I was mildly interested until 'We open it up a little bit more so it's more accessible for a wide audience, but it comes a little bit sort of Matrix. Not like Matrix but sort of the size of it all, the scope of it all. So that it becomes more of a film for a mainstream audience.'

Um...no. Please go away. Paprika is not that movie.
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Postby airichan623 » Fri Apr 23, 2010 8:10 am

LOL WORTHY! My sister and I LUVed the line about the big three. XD
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