Redshift #24

Genma Taisen (1983)

We’re back, after a festive extra week’s break. The holidays seem to have brought out a feast of posts and podcasts about older anime, and of new translation work, perhaps because we’ve all had a bit more time to spare. So, without further ado, here’s all of that activity that we could find, indexed!

As usual, remarks from Feez are in blue and those from Thaliarchus are in red.

Blogging

Heisei Etranger has two new and pieces of translation relating to the soundtrack for Royal Space Force. The first translates a recent article analysing the film’s music: its overall goals, and the nature and use of each individual piece. The article mentions the possible dissatisfaction of the composer, Ryuichi Sakamoto, with his music and/or the overall project, and the second translation follows this lead up, rendering Toshio Okada’s comments earlier last year on Sakamoto’s role in the production. There’re some fascinating details here about the interpersonal and logistical frictions involved in making the film! Do check the comments sections to both posts (now there’s a phrase rarely written these days!) for further context offered by Royal Space Force superfan Carl Horn.

Austin’s also translated some entertaining statistics from the Patlabor 25th anniversary book. (‘When Goto asked if anyone had any questions, Section 2 members asked questions 5 times’!)

SatchiiKoma carries a long article marking the recent twentieth anniversary of Serial Experiments Lain, digging into the show’s staff, creation and themes.

Slightly Comfy has a short reflection on watching Mobile Suit Gundam for the first time. I liked reading this: it’s fun and useful to be think about how the original TV series can feel without the teleological weight of knowledge of its successors sitting on top of it. The same blog has a similar reflective post on watching the first Cardcaptor Sakura film.

Over at Zimmerit, Sean’s put out a summary of Universal Century 0087, a Zeta Gundam model kit doujinshi which was self-published while Zeta itself was still airing. Fans seem to have been very actively and creatively engaged with the show’s mecha at the time, despite or possibly because the commercially available kits lacked the obsessive detail and sophistication of the best modern Gunpla.

Jasper Sharp writes on All the Anime’s company blog about the (non-)relationship between Millennium Actress and the broader history of Japanese live-action cinema.

The latest piece at Let’s Anime is a sympathetic discussion of Rintaro’s 1983 Genma TaisenHarmageddon film, covering its origins, the film itself, its context and its reception by English-speakers. Like Dave, I’m inclined to the view that while this film might not work as a whole package, it contains passages of excellence which make it worth seeing at least once.

The Skaro Hunting Society have a new essay on the troubled release history of the two Lensman anime (TV and film, both 1984; see Translations, below).

Through the Painting reviews Magical Shopping Arcade Abenobashi and Guardian of the Sacred SpiritThis post brings back memories. Moribito balances its strengths well: the fight scenes, the character development and interactions, and the world building. I remember liking its soundtrack as well, particularly the opening song.

The City Hunter survey at Juve-Niall Delinquency reaches the first CH feature film, .357 Magnum (1989).

R042 has a new article on Arcadia of My Youth: Endless Orbit SSX, the 1982–83 iteration of Captain Harlock, with a particular focus on the show’s bleak morality of resistance.

Land of Obscusion’s latest piece is a deep-dive on the 1991 Sukeban Deka OVA.

Chris Siebermann recently re-watched Black Magic M-66 (1987), and reflects on how it has aged.

At Ogiue Maniax, sdshamshel writes about the first Patlabor OVA (1988), with a focus on Noa Izumi’s role.

The Great OAV Watch continues with Psycho Diver: Soul Siren (1997), City Hunter: Million Dollar Conspiracy (1990), the Guyver OVA (1989), the Grappler Baki OVA (1994), Strait Jacket (2007), Zeorymer (1988), the 1996 Ninja Turtles OVALemnear (1989) and Prefectural Earth Defence Force (1986).

Feez covers the storyboard for Turn A Gundam episode 43, exploring how it compares to the episode’s finished animation. I still have episode 47’s storyboard to share; just a matter of actually getting off my ass and studying it. There are also a lot of humorous storyboard scribbles I’d like to share eventually. Feez has also written about the end of the first episode of Turn A, a scene which integrates Yoko Kanno’s music to powerful effect.

Sticking with forty-third episodes: Wrong Every Time’s set of posts on Ojamajo Doremi has reached episode 43. And, oh, look, here’s episode 44 too.

The series of posts on relatively obscure short anime at blautoothdmand’s blog has continued, including various titles which fall within our purview: A Child’s Metaphysics (2007), A Feather Stare at the Dark (2003), Glassy Ocean (2008) and Fantascope: Tylostoma (2006).

Finally, @flappuu on Twitter has compiled a gallery of beautiful background art stitches from Anne of Green Gables (1979). Props to the user, this must have taken a lot of work and dedication.

Podcasting

The Anime of Yesteryear podcast has a detailed review of Voltes V (1977), in its (culturally and historically important!) Filipino English dub form

The Retro Mecha Podcast convenes to chat over the 1989 Five Star Stories film adaptation.

Akibahara Renditions’s latest episode examines The Twilight of the Cockroaches (1987).

All Geeks Considered dedicate an episode to Robot Carnival (1987).

Noted Christmas anime Tokyo Godfathers gets a treatment from the Casual Anime Podcast.

Retronauts spends half an episode on the light-gun tie-in show Zillion (1987).

The Anime Nostalgia Podcast has a general year-in-review episode out.

Translating

What we’ve been up to

Feez —  Happy New Year! I finally finished Daimos to close out the year. It’s a fantastic anime and definitely a major step up from Voltes V in terms of storytelling and having a dynamic character cast. I’d say it’s very good at crafting characters the viewer is clearly meant to hate. 2018 was a bit of a slow year for me when it came to anime, so I’m looking to bounce back in 2019. Super Robot Wars T releases in a few months, with its odd assortment of series, so I’d like to watch some Harlock and finally tackle Rayearth‘s second season. We’ll see though!

Thaliarchus — I’ve moved house, for the sixth time in the last three years. Don’t move house, it is stupid.

In other news, I finished watching Gun x Sword, which I enjoyed well enough but wouldn’t especially recommend. I’ve also watched the 2006 Utawarerumono anime adaptation, about which I would say more or less the same thing! It seems the turn of the year has been a time for me to remind myself what anime was like in the mid-2000s.

Oh, and: to mark the start of 2019 I drew up a non-exhaustive list of anime which will have their tenth, twentieth, thirtieth, fortieth or fiftieth anniversaries this year

7 thoughts on “Redshift #24

  1. As always, thank you two for your Redshifts. I don’t always comment, by I’m always looking forward to them because they point me to super interesting content I would otherwise miss. The part about Ryuichi Sakamoto and Okada was really fun to read!

    As for Moribito: Yes, it has an amazing soundtrack, one of Kenji Kawai’s best works. I’m particularly fond of the main theme and it’s rendition as an in-story song with “Nahji no Uta”. I’m a huge fan of Nahoko Uehashi’s works in general, and it’s kind of a shame that only Moribito’s first novel received the anime treatment (though more of it was adapted as a TV drama recently). I’m really looking forward to the anime adaption of The Deer King (Shika no Ou) which is hopefully coming this year! In the meantime, I will dig into the novels which are sometimes described as “medical fantasy thrillers” – quite unusual!

    Turn A Gundam: You’ve convinced me to make this the next show I watch after I finish Zettai Shounen.

    Glassy Ocean: Wow, I didn’t expect to see someone write about this lovely little short movie. I have seen all of Shigeru Tamura’s anime works, and this one is my clear favorite. His style very much reminds me of European children’s books like The Little Prince or The Neverending Story, and I will see if I can get my hands on more of his non-anime works. The film is from 1998, by the way, not 2008. And for that, it features some quite amazing 3G CG work for that time.

    Anne: Yes, I love those backgrounds and also made a ton of screenshots while watching it last year. I can see why Green Gables became a popular tourist spot for Japanese, just like the Heidi drew Japanese people to the Alps.

    1. I’m pretty interested in The Deer King too—so it’s nice to be reminded that it’s on the way, thank you! I hope you enjoy Turn A Gundam if you try it. We’re both big fans of it, for whatever that’s worth!

  2. Chibi Maruko-chan- 63 (MaruChanSubs)
    Kindaichi Shounen no Jikenbo- 135 (KindaichiLovers)
    Dash! Yonkurou- 23,24 (SquareSubs)
    NG Knight Ramune & 40- 20 (Lameness)
    Ichigatsu ni wa Christmas- 1(Kingmenu)
    Toki no Daichi: Hana no Oukoku no Majo- 1-3
    Psychoarmor Govarian- 8-26(AniShi)
    Makyou Densetsu Acrobunch- 3-24(AniShi)
    Juushin Liger- 31-33(AniShi)

    The first three are shows that you’ve covered before, but I think you missed these episodes.
    Ichigatsu ni wa Christmas is by Kingmenu, who’s subs always contain terrible English.(Example: You dislike me and I hate parties and December is spirit and I do not like Christmas.)
    Toki no Daichi was translated from Chinese subs to English.
    The last three popped up on aniDB recently, but it looks like some have been subbed for awhile. AnimeShinigami is an Italian sub group, so they may been translated from Italian subs.

    1. Thank you! We picked up the Maru-chan one (it’s in #22) but I think most of the others are new. It looks like Old Castle have put out Ichigatsu since you posted this, so I hope their subs will be better!

      Do you have a link for the NG Knight Ramune & 40 material? A bit of digging hasn’t turned it up. Actually, is there a good single page for this kind of announcement on aniDB? Or is it just a case of surveying the ‘latest additions’ page? It’s not a site I know well & can work easily…

      1. I can’t find any site for Lameness. It seems like he’s just one person who has translated a few episodes from Spanish.

        Yeah, I just check the recent releases every day on aniDB. As far as I can tell, you can’t see more then the last 250, but you can use the filter to remove things and see more beyond that. I’ll set it to “Finished” and “Use audio/sub lang pref”, which I’ve set to Japanese audio and English subs in my profile. This will remove currently airing anime, raw anime, and non-English subs. I could create a new account and add every anime that is already subbed to my list and then choose “Not in mylist”, but I haven’t felt like putting in that much work.

  3. I already told you that on Twitter, but I’ll repeat: thank you for that list of anime, I hate it!
    I also hate that Millennium Actress and Seirei no Moribito are old anime now, but I think I already complained about that.
    Glad to see Lensman being subbed, I recently became interested in it after reading that it might have inspired Green Lantern Corps and definitely inspired some later characters and stuff. The books, that it – but why read books when I can now watch anime adaptation!
    Really nice collection in this Redshift I’d say, thank you both for your hard work with compiling these!

    1. Thank you for the kind words, it’s always good to know that what we’re doing is appreciated! Do check out the Lensman anime if you’re interested, but though I’m no expert, I’m not sure it’s a terribly close adaptation of the original material…

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