Questioned By Fandom For The Week Of March 28th, 2015
It’s been an interesting week around the office as we’ve had weather ups and downs here as well as chaotic household ones as my youngest daughter has finished her play and we enter a sense of normalcy – ahead of her beginning her final three month training run to be a second degree black belt. We’ve been working through a lot of news and events going on from AnimeJapan 2015 and are now looking at the upcoming convention schedule, which includes our appearance at Anime Boston next week. Add in the new spring season about to begin and there’s a whole lot to like going on.
We’ve had a light run of questions this week and have our new compilation of them below, but we’re always looking for more too.
Check out some of the things we were asked about this week, and hit us up with new questions here because we definitely enjoy it! Remember, it doesn’t have to be just about anime.
So, AoA (maybe not so much PCUSA) is charging their titles at a higher price than normal cause the demand for them is low or the demand is healthy along with the amount of hardcore buyers to get their hands on their stuff for now? Why don’t other R1 companies do this to earn more profit then?
Largely because they know it would be cutting their own throats in a way. While Aniplex and Pony Canyon are working with a smaller number of titles, the rest are working with a lot more titles and it would cause it so that consumers could not purchase as much from them. And they want to sell more volume overall, so the lower pricing is what will do it. Providing select limited editions helps to raise things, but at the same time they offer the lower regular priced versions as well.
Do you think the reason why some CE sets come with less content compared to other regions is due to declining interest in anime in R1 or is perceived “unreasonable” pricing by majority consumers really backfiring on us?
It’s not declining interest, but there are complications in really going big with collectors editions since so many things have to be cleared and hurdles with getting the right materials – and in a timely fashion so you don’t lose out on the early anticipation for a release. There’s also going to be some sticker shock entering it at some point as more collectors editions come out per month as the prices are up there, and if a fan is interested in two or three of them on top of other releases, it then becomes harder to get things and it spreads out from there in a ripple effect.
What we also see is that different regions of the world have very different interests. The Haikyuu French release is interesting in what they’re getting, but it was zero surprise that we’re getting just the show. Sports shows just don’t sell here and until that changes from the fan side, it won’t change on the release side. Which is unfortunate, because a lot of fans watch these sports shows online through legal streaming, but the home video pickups simply don’t happen. So we’re lucky to get a DVD and BD release, even monolingual, in a lot of cases.
Why is Sentai sitting on Beyond the Boundary? Especially with the announcement of a limited edition, what are they waiting for?
“Sitting on” it is how it likely seems to fans, but the reality is that there’s always a lot of things going on.
We’ve seen them building up a number of collectors editions recently. Beyond the Boundary may be a part of that and it takes time to clear all the rights and do it up. They may still be waiting on proper/full materials from the licensor, as they’re at the whims of when things get sent and with some shows/licensors, that can take forever and a day.
Sentai, like others, have a ton of things to get out the door and schedules have to be figured out, and since it’s likely getting a dub, there are always things about getting the right talent behind the camera as well.
So they may be waiting on any number of things, things they can’t talk about. I know they said recently that they’re getting closer to releasing new information about it and I’d keep an eye out on the convention circuit for news. I suspect they may be doing this up big, or they may be tying it to a potential movie acquisition announcement as well.
What is your take on the stuff that Chris Ayres has directed as far as dubs go?
I’ve enjoyed what I’ve heard for the most part, but I continue to stress that dubs are areas where they’re not what I primarily listen to and I don’t delve into them deeply. I grew up in an era without dubs outside of the couple of things that were broadcast, like Robotech and Starblazers, and most of what I saw was either raw or subtitled.
I’m totally in favor of dubs, want more and love the whole new broadcast dub initiative out there. But for me, dubs for the majority of shows don’t do much of anything. There are some great performances that I’ve checked out from time to time, and I listen to them while writing up reviews, but they’re not things that I delve deep into critiquing.
Any chance of you catching the Dub Premiere of Wanna Be The Strongest in The World at Anime Boston?
I haven’t checked the schedule yet for the convention – I usually don’t until I get on site since it changes regularly anyway – and at this point I only know my panel is at 10:30 am on Saturday morning. But I am curious to hear the dub for that show. I only saw the first episode or two when it was simulcast and am curious as to how they’re going to run with it.
You think the R1 anime industry will ever get expensive to the point where we buy physical released at the same price as JP with little video content per disc?
Nope. While we may get import releases from time to time and we’ll see Japanese companies coming over and finding certain levels of success with it, I don’t believe it will ever be the norm unless fandom as a whole stops buying product. The smaller your fanbase, the more you need to charge to cover costs and make something of a profit.
I used to be into model railroading when I was a kid/early teen and you used to be able to go to train shows and buy new engines for $20 or so. Prices ranged all over, but you could make some good sets with what you could get. Now the cheapest you ever see is like $200 or more. The reason being that the market for it shrunk so far that they’re producing so little and have to charge more.
But in general, if the market stays healthy and grows, we’ll be fine.
What seems to be the ‘face’ of anime that most non-fans of it seem to recognize it by?
Probably still Pokemon for the most part. The majority won’t recognize it all when you get down to it though. Some in-between fans may recognize things like Dragon Ball Z maybe or Sailor Moon, but that comes more from merchandise and the like or even just that their kids are into it.
Chris has been writing about anime, manga, movies and comics for well on twenty years now. He began AnimeOnDVD.com back in 1998 and has covered nearly every anime release that’s come out in the US ever since.