Official Rebuild Dub Thread

Discussion of the new series of Evangelion movies ( "Evangelion Shin Gekijōban", meaning "Evangelion: New Theatrical Edition"). The final installment is scheduled to debut in Japan on January 23, 2021.

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Postby Seele00TextOnly » Mon Feb 07, 2011 4:41 am

Well gee CORE, don't hold back... tell us how you really feel.

I think it's entirely possible to use the range of tone available in the human vocal cords in English as much as it was done in the Japanese without sounding odd. Some relevant English dubs that managed to retain character and personality in their performances notably include the oft-famed Cowboy Bebop dub, the Azumanga Daioh dub, and, yeah, the original Eva dub, all of which I overall quite enjoy.

Look for example at the Misato and Asuka performances. Those could hardly be called lifeless or dull, in my opinion anyway. So far, however, I can tell you that this Mari performance dub does seem especially lifeless and dull, and quite sadly in complete contradiction to how the character was portrayed in the original. This Mari reminded me more of Rei than of a more frenetic character like Misato or Asuka.

So yes, there are plenty of ways to use an "english language custom equivalent of 'getting on with it' with a upbeat 'cute or cheeky' style of speech [...] with out sounding perverted to a native english speaker" found all over the place, notably in the dubs I referenced, and I'm really not sure where you came up with such a sentiment.
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Postby FreakyFilmFan4ever » Mon Feb 07, 2011 9:10 am

View Original PostCORE wrote:This is because there is no english language custom equivalent of "getting on with it" with a upbeat "cute or cheeky" style of speech.. english language can not be used that way with out sounding perverted to a native english speaker.

On that observation, I also draw your attention to the wider pitch range the Asians seems to have over the Caucasian folk. My aunt is Korean (she was adopted) and always had a higher pitched voice than the rest of us.

View Original PostCORE wrote:In regard to performance quality (possibly the most vague thing you can give a good or bad review to and shows a lack of sensibilities in the entire area and discredits your criticism instantly) i would say the above along with many other complex considerations are clearly being made that fans who criticizes this are unaware of or simply don't want to think about.
I think many who criticize localization just prefer the utter alienation found in another language more than a native experience translation. which really is just pathetic and ridiculously ironic.

Hm. I haven't watched a lot of anime, so let me speak within regards of what I have seen.

Megumi Ogata had a better voice performance than Spike Spencer as Shinji Ikari on several levels:

1) Ogata's a woman. Spike is not. Even in the Untied States it has been found by more experienced voice directors in both the radio and animation industries that women sound more natural as little boys than grown men do. This leads quite nicely into my second point...

2) Since Ogata's voice is more naturally inclined to sound like the age of the male gender, she doesn't have to strain her voice that much to reach certain emotional levels in the vocal performance without loosing the "little boy" sound. Spike on the other hand, can be heard constantly keeping his emotional range very limited so as not to stray away from that little boy sound. If you want examples, just find any point in the series where Shinji Ikari screams. There is no spoken language to cater to those who "prefer the utter alienation found in another language", so it just come down solely to the voice performance itself. Ogata can be heard pulling of the emotional intensity with more precision than Spike, who has to strain just to sound like a boy.

3) The dialogue breaks and pauses (or dialogue beats) naturally found in the spoken Japanese language just sound weird when those same beats are brought over to a spoken English sentence. English actors can be heard speeding through line reading simply because it didn't take that long to say the same thing in the spoken Japanese language. Other times the dialogue is re-written in a very weird sentence structure to lengthen certain English lines simply because is took longer to say that same line in the spoken Japanese language. This does distract drastically from the perforce that the English actor would want to portray in the lines he or she would be reading. Uma Thurman realized this upon reading the script for the English dub for Naussica, based on her fluent ability to speak Japanese. She was one of the few voice actors to get the pacing of the dialog ironed out a little better in the English dubs, but most of that was also because she's a more experienced actor than anyone Funimation would hire. And that brings me to my last point...

4) Almost any voice actor hired in Japan has generally had more experience performing either physically or vocally than the usual folks hired for the English dubs of anime. There are, of course, few accounts where you see a voice actor break into the industry with their first anime. For example, the role of Asuka was one of the first roles of Yuko Miyamura. But some of the above listed reason will point out that the animation was timed with certain dialogue beats natural to the Japanese language in mind. (The voice were recorded after the animation, but the animation was still timed with the dialog in mind.) This gives her great advantage to explore and practice the emotional beats of the character simply because she's used to the dialog beats found in her native tongue. Spike, on the other hand, couldn't pull Shinji off despite his deep lack of experience simple because, on top of being new to the craft, also had to fit his dialog into a beat different from that of his native tongue. This is a juggling act inexperienced actors in Texas (Funimation's location) have a hard time accomplishing over the more experienced actors found in California (Pixar's location, therefore benefiting Studio Ghibli dubs).

EDIT: And these are all just the technical reasons. I haven't even gone into the creative reasons about the original Japanese cast having the directors notes on character subtext that effect line inflections, natural qualities of the original cast that was seen by the original director as appropriate handling those subtexts, and so on. All of this is missing when a different director takes over the dubbing with a different cast.

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Postby oOoOoOo » Mon Feb 07, 2011 11:25 am

CORE, you don't even have to compare the English dub to the Japanese to know it is poor. You just have to compare the English dub to people in the real world who speak English. Damn, the Francophones I know from Quebec speak English in a more natural fashion. The Funimation people sound like kids in high school who are called upon to read out loud and they're kind of uncertain and they either try too hard or are downright flat.

Also, apologies, I exaggerated on the "anime ghetto" thing. Ghibli certainly isn't as mainstream in North America as Disney/Pixar, but Princess Mononoke and Spirited Away were shown in multiple threatres in major cities across North America, and ran for weeks if not months. This is the case with loads of foreign-language films, even the independent stuff. The Rebuild films, on the other hand, got "one night only" showings and zero advertising. Princess Mononoke and Spirited Away both got fairly heavy coverage in the news. Certainly there is all the studio drama and the money to consider, but I'll argue that Ghibli is a few steps ahead of Evangelion in terms of mainstreamness. My friend group was in high school and college when the Ghibli films hit theatres, and just about all of them are familiar with Ghibli. It was a fairly big deal. We're talking people who went to art school, people who are actually in the animation industry. None of them really know what Evangelion is, other than having a vague recognition of Rei as "that blue-haired chick who has posters in all the comic book shops". I usually have to convince people that Eva's not just about high school kids fighting giant robots. x_x

Let's say there are tiers to the anime ghetto. ^^; One of the reasons I like this site is that there are people here who like Eva. A lot of this is anecdotal, but that's where my exaggerations were coming from.

It doesn't help that the shrill voicework (take Shinji) basically invokes Saturday morning cartoons about talking squirrels and rabbits, as opposed to serious drama.
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Postby COACH » Mon Feb 07, 2011 2:56 pm

To me, it just seems natural to want to watch any foreign production in its original language, be it animation or live-action. I watch French films in French, Korean films in Korean, and Japanese animation in Japanese. I don't get the appeal of English dubs, most of the time. It just seems lazy.
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Postby Jayfive » Mon Feb 07, 2011 3:57 pm

Ghibli certainly isn't as mainstream in North America as Disney/Pixar, but Princess Mononoke and Spirited Away were shown in multiple threatres in major cities across North America, and ran for weeks if not months. This is the case with loads of foreign-language films, even the independent stuff. The Rebuild films, on the other hand, got "one night only" showings and zero advertising. Princess Mononoke and Spirited Away both got fairly heavy coverage in the news. Certainly there is all the studio drama and the money to consider, but I'll argue that Ghibli is a few steps ahead of Evangelion in terms of mainstreamness.


THey have shown Ghibli films, indeed whole series of Ghibli films in the UK. They have never shown, to my knowledge, anything to do with Eva in the UK. The nearest you get is here:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=csUIy94V2RQ
Interview with Anno-sensei in 2002 about Love And Pop with only a passing mention of Eva while they show footage from....Gunbuster. I recommend watching some episodes of that show on YT but like I said its a few years old.

As may have been mentioned here in the past im sure, you americans dont know how good you got it.

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Postby kuwisdelu » Tue Feb 08, 2011 2:14 pm

View Original PostCORE wrote:This is because there is no english language custom equivalent of "getting on with it" with a upbeat "cute or cheeky" style of speech.. english language can not be used that way with out sounding perverted to a native english speaker.


The FLCL dub managed it. But then, they wouldn't have minded sounding perverted...

That said, I actually do like the English Eva dub, but that doesn't mean not recognizing its deficiencies.

I just wish Rebuild had Tristan.

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Postby The Eva Monkey » Tue Feb 08, 2011 2:23 pm

View Original Postkuwisdelu wrote:The FLCL dub managed it.

I actually kind of liked the FLCL dub. It felt like they cast people that were very close approximations of the Japanese, and had them recreate the same sort of performance. I think that's something more companies should strive for. You're translating, not reinterpreting.
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Postby penguintruth » Tue Feb 08, 2011 7:32 pm

There's no comparison. The FLCL dub is amazing. The Evangelion dub doesn't hold up at all.

The difference is the really strong voice acting, especially in the case of Barbara Goodson and Kari Wahlgren. Spike Spencer and Tiffany Grant could take acting lessons from them.

Fortunately Funimation's other VAs in the Rebuild dub, like Colleen Clinkenbeard and John Swasey seem to really do a great job, though I'm still waiting to be impressed by Mari's VA.

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Postby Warren Peace » Tue Feb 08, 2011 7:46 pm

I don't think comparing it to the FLCL dub is fair. That show's style allowed more freedom of performance -- mouths were frequently hidden from the viewer, allowing the VAs to form their own rhythm. The characters were also "bigger", no one really had to worry about subtlety.

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Postby GasmaskAvenger » Tue Feb 08, 2011 7:50 pm

View Original PostThe Eva Monkey wrote:You're translating, not reinterpreting.

honestly, you need to be a bit pragmatic in the translation phase because otherwise if you do a completely 100% translation, the result comes off as being very choppy and clunky
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Postby Clover » Tue Feb 08, 2011 7:51 pm

View Original PostThe Eva Monkey wrote:You're translating, not reinterpreting.

Localization > Translation

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Postby FreakyFilmFan4ever » Tue Feb 08, 2011 9:08 pm

View Original PostGasmaskAvenger wrote:honestly, you need to be a bit pragmatic in the translation phase because otherwise if you do a completely 100% translation, the result comes off as being very choppy and clunky

Well, I think there's a difference between making sure everything sounds grammatically correct to the language it's being translated into, and "re-imagining" a translation. Casting voices that sound as close in tone and inflection to the original Japanese voice actor is a plus. And sometimes, like with Cowboy Bebop, a few in the English cast can be better at the celebration of western culture that was required of the original Japanese cast because they are, in fact, western themselves. So it's more of sticking to the show's original concept as much as possible over deciding to change things around a bit just for the heck of it.

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Postby penguintruth » Tue Feb 08, 2011 9:12 pm

View Original PostWarren Peace wrote:I don't think comparing it to the FLCL dub is fair. That show's style allowed more freedom of performance -- mouths were frequently hidden from the viewer, allowing the VAs to form their own rhythm. The characters were also "bigger", no one really had to worry about subtlety.


And yet there was far more subtlety than in the Evangelion dub. Just look at the scene where Haruko coaches Naota on how to swing a bat the right way. You could never get that level of performance from any of the crew of the Evangelion TV series dub. Hell, you probably couldn't get that from the English cast of Rebuild.

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Postby Mr. Tines » Wed Feb 09, 2011 3:03 am

View Original PostClover wrote:Localization > Translation
More like "traduttore, traditore" as the Italians have it.

I would recommend that people interested in this debate go read the essay on the perils of translation (even between English and USAn) in Hofstadter's Metamagical Themas.
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Postby Electric Sachiel » Wed Feb 09, 2011 1:18 pm

View Original PostSeele00TextOnly wrote:Well gee CORE, don't hold back... tell us how you really feel.

I think it's entirely possible to use the range of tone available in the human vocal cords in English as much as it was done in the Japanese without sounding odd. Some relevant English dubs that managed to retain character and personality in their performances notably include the oft-famed Cowboy Bebop dub, the Azumanga Daioh dub, and, yeah, the original Eva dub, all of which I overall quite enjoy.


Thats terrible taste when you mentioned the Eva dub. In my own opinion when talking about A-class anime dubs you cant get any better than Ghost in the Shell Stand Alone Complex (1st and 2nd Season) and the Full Metal Panic english dubs. Honestly those i find are the ones filled with the most expressive emotions and the best english vocal performances.

Cowboy Beopop and Azumanga are acceptable, but saying the original Eva dub was good? LOL.....

--------------------------------

Back on-topic

I do feel that people are acting just a tad bit crazy over this one clip. Whatever your grievances may be at this moment, its still too early to tell ultimately how good of a dub 2.22 will turn out to be. I mean i hardly heard as many complaints with the 1.11 dub right?

I personally think the english dub Mari is a bit less expressive than the Japanese dub, but hey thats just me. THe one part i do like a bit is that seductive like gesture with Shinji when she smells him and gives him that comment that she likes that smell.

Whatever, still too early to tell.


NOTE:
Oddly enough how people are complaining that Mari doesnt have a British accent. But Spike Spencer in the short vid does a terribly cliche of a parody British accent when speaking. Wonder if he has grievances over Mari too? Or just poking fun at fans, anticipating that they wont like what they see? All conjecture i say! ;)

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Postby The Eva Monkey » Wed Feb 09, 2011 2:02 pm

View Original PostGasmaskAvenger wrote:honestly, you need to be a bit pragmatic in the translation phase because otherwise if you do a completely 100% translation, the result comes off as being very choppy and clunky

Except they often take it too far, and get anal-retentive about lip movements, and then you get even clunkier English dialogue as a result.
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Postby GasmaskAvenger » Wed Feb 09, 2011 2:51 pm

View Original PostThe Eva Monkey wrote:Except they often take it too far, and get anal-retentive about lip movements, and then you get even clunkier English dialogue as a result.

different strokes for different folks, then ;)



we need to get real honest to god filmmakers to really whip English dub VAs into shape to fix the anti-dub crap, IMO
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Postby oOoOoOo » Wed Feb 09, 2011 8:18 pm

View Original PostElectric Sachiel wrote:Ghost in the Shell Stand Alone Complex ... Cowboy Beopop

Amen. Like GasmaskAvenger hints at, I imagine (without having conducted a survey) that most "anti-dub" people have a problem with the actors, not with the actual concept of dubbing. Probably in a few decades the English market will have shaped up and we won't see all this bitching and moaning. To keep this on topic concerning Rebuild, it isn't like I dislike everyone. Rei's not that bad because she's supposed to be a bit lifeless. I don't think I mind Gendo either. The people who really drive me nuts have always been Spencer and Grant, and the problem is that those characters carry a lot of the emotional weight. We don't know how key Mari is going to be in the later films, but if she gets a lot of emotional weight to carry... well... this could be a problem.

I mean... Spike Spencer and Tiffany Grant why are they casting full-grown adults as fourteen-year-olds anyway? (Rhetorical question for Rebuild, serious question for NGE.) There are loads of youngsters out there with acting chops. The Disney dubs for Ghibli bring in young talent for this very reason.

I think something like "Stand Alone Complex" works because the main three or four people are great. It is the same with "Noir", where most of the secondary characters are shit but the main two are pretty good. By casting the most shrill and annoying voice actors as the leads... that just fucks with my connection to the characters.

I watched the NGE dub first, and Misato was probably my favourite straight away. It wasn't until the sub version that I came to love Shinji and Asuka.

I mean i hardly heard as many complaints with the 1.11 dub right?

We knew what to expect. Mari's the new character and thus was an opportunity to bring in fresh awesomeness. Also, I am personally diseased with hyperbolis majortastia, a crippling disorder of mirthful exaggeration.
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Postby Shogo-Kun » Wed Feb 09, 2011 8:56 pm

Spike Spencer and Tiffany Grant own those roles! I can't imagine anyone else playing their voices. I'm glad that they returned, because I probably wouldn't give two shits about Rebuild if they were replaced. I, in fact, love the dub of EVA, and I think I'm the only person who can watch it both subbed and dubbed and still get the same feeling behind it. I'm eager to see what Trina bring the table as well as getting to seek that smoking hot bitch Mari on my TV for the first time.
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Postby Mr. Tines » Thu Feb 10, 2011 3:28 am

View Original PostoOoOoOo wrote:It is the same with "Noir", where most of the secondary characters are shit but the main two are pretty good.
Did we listen to the same dub?

Valley-girl Mireille, and Kirika's mispronunciation of her partner's name as Miriel was what made me drop ADV's dubs like a brick (though morbid curiosity made me try out Tiff's take on Altena, and for that she was far less annoying than her Asuka).
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