AniManga Clash! Yu-Gi-Oh Season Zero Episode 11: The Rumored CapuMon’s New Arrival (Placeholder + Notes on Chapter 24)

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Plot: Miho is gifted a gacha machine from a college student named Warashibe, who has a crush on her. The machine is filled with Capsule Monsters – toys used to play the latest gaming craze of the same name. Warashibe is friends with Yugi since they play Capsule Monsters together, and he helped Warashibe set all of this up.

Miho is flattered, so she sends him a nice letter and a Capsule Monster, stating that she’s starting to get into the game too.

Problem is, Warashibe is a massive creeper. Even Yugi, one of the friendliest souls in the world, is put off by his overly dramatic and obsessive behavior both in regards to Capsule Monsters and Miho. He has a ‘secret base’ that is actually an old warehouse loaded with every Capsule Monster you could ever dream of, and he spends a lot of his time playing with them in the dark. He had a chance encounter with Miho a short while before and was so enamored with her that he dubbed her his Capsule Monster Goddess.

In another effort to win Miho over, Warashibe traps Yugi into helping him with a ploy. Yugi pretends to be an attacker threatening Miho and Warashibe fights him off. However, the plan fails. Miho freaks out at Warashibe’s advances and even yells that she knows really nothing about Capsule Monsters, much to Warashibe’s dismay.

The next day at school, Jonouchi, Anzu and Honda mock Warashibe for what he did. However, they don’t realize that he’s in the cafeteria with them in disguise listening to their every word. Seeing them as a threat to his and Miho’s relationship, Warashibe poisons Anzu, Jonouchi and Honda with glasses of raw water, giving them stomachaches.

A note in her locker leads Miho to the revelation that Warashibe was behind this. Pissed off, she grabs Yugi and they head to Warashibe’s secret base to chew him out. However, he posits a challenge – Miho will face him in one game of Capsule Monsters. If she wins, he’ll leave her alone forever. If she loses, she has to give herself over to him.

She accepts, and they start the game. Using a gacha machine, they select their Capsule Monsters. However, Miho’s picks are horrible. She has three level ones, the lowest level, one level two and a level four. Warashibe has two level fours and three level fives, the highest level you can use.

Miho doesn’t even get two turns into the game before she becomes frustrated at the one-sidedness and Warashibe’s attitude. Yugi accidentally knocks the gacha machine over and reveals a hidden mechanism designed to give Warashibe the best Capsule Monsters.

They try to run out of the building, but Warashibe uses a trap gate over the door to stop them. He also unveils a giant capsule in which he plans to keep Miho forever. The beam which is holding the gate crumbles, however, and knocks Miho out. Yami emerges from the smoke holding Miho’s unconscious body and challenges Warashibe to a game himself.

Yami decides to use the Capsule Monsters that Miho used in their game instead of picking a better batch, and they’ll simply pick up where Miho left off, not clear the board and start a new game. He has also declared that this game will be a Shadow Game.

Warashibe accepts and the battle starts. Warashibe easily starts picking off all of Yami’s creatures one by one, and he’s quickly left with only one on the board. However, Yami points out that he was luring him into a trap. He has lined up all of his monsters into a diagonal line in front of Yami’s last creature, who, despite being a lowly level two, just so happens to have the ability to insta-kill any monster, even level fives, as long as they’re diagonal to it.

Yami activates the ability, destroying all of Warashibe’s monsters and winning the game. Yami reminds Warashibe that Capsule Monsters aren’t about collecting – they’re about battle and using even seeming disadvantageous creatures to their full potential to win.

Warashibe has a hissy fit about the loss, but Yami delivers his punishment game – locking Warashibe in a giant level one Capsule Monster capsule.

Back with a now recovered Anzu, Jonouchi and Honda, the group talks about what happened. Miho runs up yelling about the new Capsule Monster she got, but trips and falls, dropping a slue of Capsule Monsters everywhere.

Breakdown: Oh my god. Fuck this episode with a spork made of porcupine needles.

This episode is a perfect storm of annoyingness and bad writing decisions.

Miho being given the focus is already bad enough, but Warashibe is one of the creepiest yet lamest piece of shit antagonists I’ve ever seen. The guy tries to act all menacing while he sucks on a striped lollipop 24/7, sits at gacha machines for hours basically emptying them out to get the best Capsule Monsters, sits in the dark in his little den of Capsule Monsters just playing by himself somehow and when he doesn’t get what he wants he collapses on the ground crying and has a tantrum.

Funnily enough, the subber pointed out during his last tantrum that his name translates to ‘Child.’

He also has a super-villain-esque trap set up in this warehouse and has that ridiculous life-sized Capsule Monster capsule that he plans on storing Miho in? What the actual hell?

Not to mention that he likes to pepper in English words into his speech, and they’re always just pet names for Miho like ‘Baby’ ‘Sweetheart’ and ‘My darling.’ Plus, his creepy little smiley expression can go die in a hole.

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While I do commend Miho for stepping up during this episode, she’s also a complete dumbass for the entire run. Creepy college student she barely knows gifting her a gacha Capsule Monsters machine loaded with Capsule Monsters? Better write him what was basically a love letter and include a little gift for him so he’s lead on even more. Have physical evidence that would link him to the poisoning of your three friends? Better not call the cops and instead confront him yourself with your only defense being a four foot tall spiky haired game enthusiast who is so innocent his mind is literally a child’s playroom. Guy who is obsessed with Capsule Monsters, has a warehouse full of rare Capsule Monsters (that Miho’s currently in) and spends his days playing Capsule Monsters whenever he can? Meanwhile you admit that you know little to nothing of the game and have only started practicing by yourself a day ago? Better accept his challenge where the stakes involve you handing yourself over to him if you lose.

I thought they would pull a 180 on me. I thought they’d have Miho take Yami’s place in this Shadow Game and actually manage to impress everyone with how skilled she is, secretly being a Capsule Monsters nut or something. It would’ve been a good twist, a great (and much needed) moment for Miho and it would have added something to her character.

But nope.

She makes stupid moves, basically quits after two turns and then is knocked out and Yami has to swoop in and save her ass. Then she becomes obsessed with Capsule Monsters for a quick end tag joke, but I guarantee this will never be brought up again. She ends the episode with no development or anything – she’s just ditz-ass Miho as usual.

What’s even worse is they kinda imply that Yami was just employing a strategy that Miho started – a brilliant but also completely luck based strategy that instantly won the game. I can’t believe for a minute that that would be the case. Even little Yugi pointed out that she was making bad moves, and it was never implied that she might have been up to something. Plus, if she really did have this brilliant strategy in mind, why did she quit after two moves? Even in her inner monologue, she admits that she has no idea what she’s doing.

I’m want to believe this is poor wording and that Yami was really taking advantage of a situation and monster that Miho didn’t realize she had….but I can’t.

The reason for this being the only actual AniManga Clash note I have for this episode. I mentioned in the review of chapter 24 that the Shadow Game part of that chapter was the only part adapted in Season Zero. And, yeah, it is. Just replace Warashibe with Mokuba, replace a weird love obsession motive with one of vengeance and remove Miho entirely and it’s the same game. He even cheated the same way and got the same punishment.

Remember how I mentioned that, in that chapter, they foreshadowed Yami’s strategy by having his bird monster off on its own while the other monsters were bunched up together? He was clearly planning that BS move from the very beginning….

Well…..Miho’s side of the field is set up the exact same way…..

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So even though she herself admits that she has no clue what the hell she’s doing, she still managed to think up and create this miracle winning opening formation and perfectly set up the BS win. Yami basically just noticed what she was planning and went through the motions, I guess. Miho’s an unwitting Capsule Monster prodigy.

OR, and here’s the more likely theory, the artists mirrored this game without it clicking in their minds that this opening formation was the perfect setup for Yami’s BS plan and didn’t realize what it would be implying to anyone paying attention.

This is another reason why it would have made more sense for Miho to take Yami’s place here. Have her hustle Warashibe and even trick Yugi. Act like the simple annoying moron she always is, but slowly reveal that she’s secretly a badass Capsule Monster player who has been playing in private for a long time. She just doesn’t tell anyone because it’s viewed as a game for younger children and she doesn’t want to get made fun of. She can even claim she told Warashibe that she didn’t know anything about Capsule Monsters because she thought he was creepy and wanted him to go away.

Then her opening formation would make perfect sense, and she’d be winning her own freedom instead of Yami doing it for her.

But again, nope. Just have her be a complete idiot who accepted a challenge that clearly wasn’t in her favor, even in spite of the rigged capsule selection.

And how, after all of that, is she suddenly obsessed with Capsule Monsters? I’d think if a guy stalked me, poisoned my friends, nearly kept me as a human Capsule Monster for his own sick enjoyment, and gambled my life on a rigged Capsule Monster game, the last game I’d ever want to play would be Capsule Monsters. But, nope nope nope. Miho does things just cuz.

Is this the last Miho-centric episode? Please say it is. They never do anything worthwhile with her and she’s like sandpaper on all of my senses, so why bother?

Go away, Miho.

Next time, Jonouchi tries to win big on a local game show, but certain people aren’t willing to let him get the prize money so easily.


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Space-Time Detective Genshi-Kun/Flint the Time Detective Episode 15 (14 for the Dub) The Hero is Redman | Sub/Dub Comparison

Plot: Genshi and the others head to 20th century Japan where they meet the superhero space-time monster team, Redman! While they have the best of intentions in helping people, they cause a lot of havoc in the process.

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Title Change: The Hero is Redman is changed to The Cardians.

They add in two establishing shots after the theme song and before the shots of Redman.

Name Changes: Redman Red is changed to Blademan. Redman Yellow is changed to Thud. Redman Blue is changed to Arrowman. And Redman Pink is changed to Snapper.

Also, their team name was “Redman.” In the dub, they’re the Cardians, which I think is a cute way to change their team name based on their card suits while making a play on the word ‘guardians’.

So let me get this straight…..Red/Blademan is a blademaster. Yellow/Thud is super strong. Blue/Arrowman is an expert archer.

….And Pink/Snapper……AKA the only girl of the group……specializes in taking pictures. Not only that, but of course she gets the hearts suit.

Genshi is happy that the Redman come in so many colors. Flint guesses that they each have unique powers.

Originally, Rei said that the Redman have a strong sense of justice. Genshi then asks if justice is something you eat. In the dub, Jillian says they’re more interested in publicity than justice lately, and Flint asks if publicity is something you eat.

Saban actually adjusted their timeframe here. Originally, they were told that the Redman were in the year 1999, which is current day when the series is being aired (The series started in 1998, but it’s most likely 1999 by this point.) Saban, however, licensed and dubbed it in 2000, so they changed the target date to 2000.

Genshi stutters and mutters to himself about the word ‘justice’ before asking if it’s a juice. In the dub, Flint asks if it’s lunch time.

After Flint’s lunch comment, they add in Goodman hitting on Jillian again. I don’t know why they keep doing that. It’s not funny and it just makes Goodman come off as a skeez who can’t take no for an answer.

Typical extension of the scenes in which they get their time card and head off.

Goodman: “Hey, guys, get me one of the Y2K preparation kits! That’d be good for a laugh or two!” Oh Saban, you topical bastards. That won’t get dated at all, promise.

Sarah: “Wow, we’re in a big city!”…Big cit–?…I just realized. They didn’t say that you guys were supposed to go to Tokyo. Since when is Saban less accurate in these details than the original? Don’t tell they’re 4Kidsing and desperately don’t want kids to know they live in Japan. I thought they established that before.

In the original, the woman and the guy were arguing because Yamato (1999 version) bumped into the guy . He tries to calm them both down, but they both snap at him, claiming he’s the cause of this mess. He backs down and laughs nervously, but the guy grabs him by the shirt telling him he has no place laughing when a girl is sticking up for him.

In the dub, the woman is accusing the guy of stealing from her purse, which he denies. Goodman tries to break it up, but they both tell him to butt out. He backs off and laughs nervously. The guy grabs him and asks what he’s laughing about.

In response to Yamato running away from the situation, Genshi points out that he ran. Sora and Tokio then say in unison “He’s the worst.” In the dub, Flint calls him a chicken and Sarah and Tony say in unison “Bawk bawk bawk.”

Name plate gone.

Subbed:

Dubbed:

What the hell? They kept in Yamato’s cigarette? It’s not lit, but what the hell? Even old shows tended to have any instances of smoking censored. They even draw attention to it in the dub. In the original, ‘99!Yamato goes on explaining how he didn’t actually run away. In the dub, the kids point out that he’s smoking and ‘00!Goodman says he is. He’s been meaning to quit, but he hasn’t had the time….? I don’t know how that makes sense, but whatever.

To their credit, they are definitely putting the smoking in a bad light. They make the kids yell at him to quit immediately, and even his girlfriend tells him he shouldn’t be joking about smoking. (In the original, the kids were exclaiming a repeat of his excuse for running in disbelief, and his girlfriend chastised him for not fighting the guy on his own.) But it’s still so weird to see this.

In really funny moment, ‘99!Yamato tries to explain himself to his girlfriend by saying “If I were injured, it would hurt.” Since the entire conversation was changed in the dub, ‘00!Goodman says “Sorry. How about I quit next year?”

When his girlfriend hits him, she walks off saying “You’re the worst.” In the dub, she says “Don’t call. Smokers are losers.”

Oto-tan says that she has an admirable fighting spirit. In the dub, he says even cavemen know smoking’s bad. Pretty sure the only smoking cavemen know about is the “me make fire” kind.

There’s an establishing shot of the park via a shot of a faucet for some reason before we cut to the kids talking to the Redman. In the dub, it’s removed.

Oh my god. There is no way Red didn’t slice the driver of this car in half.

Sora says they have to take the Redman back home. In the dub, she tells Flint that he can’t join the Cardians because his costume doesn’t match theirs.

When Genshi and the other Redman (I’m not using the plural incorrectly – that seems to be the way they address themselves in a plural manner.) run off, Sora asks where they’re going. In the dub, she tells him she wasn’t making fun of Flint’s clothes.

Saban adds in a closeup shot of Petra’s face twitching right before they get to the kitten. She explains that she plans on getting all of the Cardians now.

Nitpicking, but the group clearly say “Guardians” when they catch the kitten, not “Cardians.”

The person playing the bully is completely unfit for that role. He’s like six but he sounds like he’s 30.

In the original, everyone keeps saying “Redman are so cool!” Toki-G says it and goes “Oh now I’m doing it too.” In the dub, since they don’t retain the original line, they have Old Timer say “Those Cardians really float my boat! Oh no. Now I’m starting to do it too.” Doing what? Just…liking them?

TP Lady also parrots the “Redman are so cool!” line. In the dub, she says “Those Cardians are so dreamy!” Dreamy?…..Are you….attracted to the foot-tall muppet-esque Super-Sentai creatures?

TP Lady says it would be boring to be good. In the dub, she says she’d have to get a whole new wardrobe if she turned good.

Now that I think about it, it’s pretty trippy to hear Petra talk about wanting to be the leader of this Super Sentai-based team. She’s voiced by Barbara Goodson, who voiced Rita Repulsa in Power Rangers – which is also a Saban production. Power Rangers was retooled from old clips of Super Sentai (and continues to be to this day, I believe) combined with reshot footage for American/Canadian audiences.

It’s even funnier considering the name she comes up with for her proposed new team with the Redman/Cardians is the TP Rangers/The Four Fabulous Fighting Card Rangers.

They repeat the same closer shot of Dyno talking to mockingly says “I bet you think the Cardians are going to appear.”

TP Lady, Dyna and Mite are being very funny today, but the dub keeps ruining it. In the original, Dyna and Mite fake evil laugh, pause and laugh again several times before conversing with each other about waiting for the Redman because they’re bored. In the dub, they do repeat the laugh gag, but it’s ruined because they have Dyno says the laughing is hard work….

They insert the “BAGON!” screen right after the Cardians arrive, which makes no sense because they’re acting like they hit Dyno and Mite, when they clearly hadn’t yet. Also, they keep the “BAGON!” card after they do hit them, making this even more confusing.

I figured this would get cut. In the original, they show Dyna and Mite beaten up and thrown in the garbage. Mite’s butt is on full display. Instead of finding some way to censor that, they just cut the shot altogether.

Both TP Lady and Petra thank the Redman/Cardians for saving her, but in the original all Red says is “Red” because that’s all he can say, like any other space-time monster. In the dub, he asks her what’s wrong, which doesn’t make any sense. All she did was thank them, and they already saved her from the danger.

In the original, TP Lady explains what her P mark does while acting all dizzy and disoriented because she was spinning around a lot to stamp their heads. In the dub, they make off like she’s mocking them. Despite the fact that she’s clearly acting very dizzy, there are even spirals in her eyes, they just have her say “Neener neener neener” over and over. Saban, dizziness exists in the west too…

TP Lady corrects Genshi in her name by saying she’s TP Red-dy now….which sounds really dumb. In the dub, she just says she doesn’t take orders from him.

Oto-tan laments on TP Lady having another evil scheme. In the dub, he says “Remind me never to eat at your restaurant.” It actually took me a minute to get this joke…..Haha….she doesn’t take ORDERS from him….hahah….Ha.

Name Plate removed.

Subbed:

Dubbed:

Name Change: Akuman is changed to Cardiancon.

I actually don’t understand this evil form. Is the evil jester + centipede thing a Super Sentai reference I don’t know of? I get that maybe this is the Joker of the suits, but that’s the best I can gather. Everything else is confusing me.

After the commercial break, they show TP Lady yelling at Akuman to attack Genshi. In the dub, they remove this and insert the shot of Flint wielding Rocky that was meant to come after Cardicon started attacking.

Oh my god, in the crowd…it’s that voice actor who can’t help but do a bad imitation of John Wayne in every Saban dub he’s ever in.….

I love how they have never once had to cover up a space-time monster’s existence or explain away a battle to anyone nearby before, but now they suddenly feel the need to so for absolutely no reason.

Originally, Tokio explained that the reason this battle looked so amazing was because it was American special effects for a movie being shot. In the dub, he just marvels that they’re filming a monster movie in their town.

Again with Genshi making additional conflict just because he’s hungry. Why don’t they have a rule to feed this kid before they go off on an adventure? It’s not like they don’t have the time – they literally have a time machine.

Instead of showing Genshi smashing through the window, they cut away to a repeat of that comic “BANG – BAGON” screen.

Petra: “Now do the same to those meddling kids! Make them dance the macarena!” First of all, Cardiancon didn’t make Flint dance, so I don’t know what you’re on about. Second, yeah, Saban, make that macarena reference. Date this show so hard you leave bruises.

I don’t know why, but Saban makes the old lady so much meaner in her speech than she is in the original. It was originally a very sweet speech about how kind Redman was, and how, in a world where people tend to just watch things happen instead of taking action, Redman leaped in to help them and they were happier for it, even if they caused some trouble. In the dub, she does say this more or less, but she also goes on to say ‘Well, I guess you’ve decided to take the easy way out. Listen up! I’d whack you with my cane if I could reach you!” And then Cardiancon and the music react like it’s such a sweet gesture. What the hell is this? Why would you change her sweet speech into her being so harsh for no reason?

Originally, TP Lady, Dyna and Mite laugh about how stinky her speech was, and TP Lady says it was almost as stinky as Dyna and Mite’s socks, which makes them go all wiggly and fall down…..I get the joke, but it’s just awful. In the dub, Petra says the awful speech is killing them, which makes them go all wiggly and fall down. It’s still a lame joke, but I actually prefer the dubbed version this time.

Slight white flash added when Petra whips Cardiancon in the face.

Oh wow. So….now de-transformed, TP Lady calls on Redman to fight more. Red jumps up and we get an INSANELY overly long sequence where he’s trying to spell out “o maeto ore to ittai ichi de shoubu da?!” which means “I challenge you to a one-on-one duel.”

He does this by charades because he can’t talk.

O (behind) is mimed with him smacking his butt at them.

Maeto is shown by dragging Mite out.

Next, Red comes out dressed as a matador to convey ‘ore’ because l and r are interchangeable in Japanese.

He brings out a door (to.)

He acts like he’s in pain (itai.)

He throws a ball into the air to signify ‘one’ (ichi.)

He holds up his hand (de.)

He brings out a soy sauce (shouyu) and points out the label (fuda.)

Then he repeats the sequence again, but faster, for them to get the entire sentence together.

This would have been so much better as a joke if they found some shorter way to convey this, because, as it stands, it was very annoying to sit through.

Now, there are two huge problems with translating this scene. First, the time shifters of the dub can talk, so there’s absolutely no reason for Red to start playing charades to convey his words.

Second, there are obviously a lot of complications in trying to make these charades work with English words. They barely work with Japanese words. Like, how would this sequence translate to a native English speaker? A bullfighter’s butt might come through your door and hurt your hand so put soy sauce on it?

I have to actually commend Saban for even attempting this, because this looked so impossible I was convinced they would probably just have Red challenge him straight out and cut the charades, but nope. Saban left in this whole sequence and made something fairly workable. So, what was it?

*deep breath*

Flint: “To the rear with friends, this is a challenge, and he who goes out crying leaves one with the upper hand.”

Flint and Petra: “A DUEL!?”

FLINT.

FIGURED.

THAT.

OUT.

Leaving the fact that Flint is so stupid he used to think friends were a food aside, how in the name of Zordon did ANYONE get anything coherent from that jumbled jigsaw puzzle of a charade?

…..Even though….ya know….it’s kinda generous to call that coherent. Saban, I give you all the credit in the world for even attempting this, bravo, standing ovation, I’ll buy you a bouquet of flowers later, but that is some crazy-ass word salad. The second half of the sentence is workable, but what was that starting portion? I keep thinking I’m hearing it wrong, but I have the volume on max and I can’t hear anything else but “To the rear with friends.”

ALSO, don’t think my eagle eyes missed the fact that you totally cut out the part with the soy sauce bottle because you just couldn’t think of any way to work that in, and you never gave a reason as to why Blademan was even doing charades to begin with when he can talk. Flint does say “Why didn’t you just say so?” but Blademan never answers.

So why are they acting like it’s only fair if Blademan uses his sword but Genshi has to fight without Oto-tan?

Sarah: “Go get ‘em, Flint! Show ‘em who wears the loin cloth around here!”

Tony: “Uhhh…….All right!”

Sarah, sweetie, that didn’t make sense.

Tony, sweetie, I get that you’re a slave to lip flaps, but that was awkward for everyone. Please never do that again.

The stare down was originally silent barring background music. In the dub, Blademan thinks “I bet he’s thinking what his next move should be.” and Flint thinks “A cheeseburger would taste really good right now.” You just ate! Why is your only shtick food?

Tony thinks “Wow, what if Flint loses?” What if you had faith in your friend to beat a foot-tall cosplayer with a fencing sabre that has a rubber tip on it?

Sarah thinks “Maybe they’ll call the show Sarah Time Detective.” First of all, are you responding to Tony’s thoughts? Because that’s weird. Second, WOW, you think your friend might die and your first reaction is taking over the show? Third, nice way to break the fourth wall, Saban. Finally, Sarah, you’re not a Time Detective, technically, so that wouldn’t happen.

Old Lady: “I’m too old for this stuff.”

Kid: “I’m too young for this stuff.”

*snort* Alright, that was pretty funny.

Cat: “I need a catbox.” Aaaaaaand you ruined it.

After that, the scene remains silent, because it’s supposed to be a tense buildup to the duel, but the dub suddenly adds narration over a PA system from some unknown person, even telling us not to touch that remote before the commercial comes on. Can you please shut up, Saban? Also, you’re using up your fourth-wall break allowance pretty quickly today.

They cut out a shot of Genshi facing Red, probably due to the incredibly awkward angle where we can see Genshi’s butt cheeks for some reason.

For some reason, they cut out Dyna and Mite responding to TP Lady claiming she was never going to replace them by saying that’s a bunch of baloney.

The dub doesn’t include the detail that TP Lady was born on October 12th, making her a Libra.

The original just said her horoscope said to be wary of something gigantic. The dub says to beware of giant robots.

Name Plate Removed:

Subbed:

Dubbed:

Name Change: Super Redman is changed to Cardian Master……Kinda wish they used this opportunity to make a Megazord reference.

Pterry: “It’s like a monster movie!” You mean it’s like a giant robot movie…..because there are no monsters, only giant robots.

They censored out the cat robot getting punched in the face…..because now we apparently can’t even show violence towards robots?

This music in the original sounds remarkably similar to the battle music of Pokemon….Space-Time Detective Genshi-Kun did first air in 1998…..Hm…

The cat robot’s Super Deluxe Brilliant Gold Mechanical Cat Punch is changed to Super Deluxe 9 Megawatt Gas-Filled Tuck and Roll with Extra Cheese Power Punch. Were you guys competing with yourselves to see who could make the most nonsensical word salad or something?

I don’t know how TP Lady/Petra Fina keeps reading anything in this horoscope book. There are no words in either version – just simple drawings of the images that correlate to each astrological sign.

Also, I missed this the first time, but there’s an illegible word written underneath “Butterfly” in the magazine in the original, but it’s painted away in the dub. I have no clue why.

Subbed:

Dubbed:

They removed that random word, but they couldn’t be arsed to fix “Scorrio” to “Scorpio”?

Okay…so…you’re not allowed to show the robot getting punched in the face, but you can show the giant sword go clean through its body, its eyes roll back in its head, split in two and then blow up?

TP Lady says she wishes she had read the magazine before now. Dyna and Mite say they read it every month. (They read the horoscopes every month? Isn’t that a daily or weekly thing?) In contrast, Petra says “Horoscope schmoroscope! Anybody could have seen that coming! RATS!”

They switched the shot of Toki-G to a closeup of him for some reason.

New ending theme for the original. It’s a good song, but the visuals are strange. It’s just an onslaught of shots of Sora….sitting there and looking at the camera. There’s a shot of her looking at a floating, rotating black pyramid in the sky, another of her looking at the sky while standing on green water? She keeps looking at a flower and tries to hold the sun in her hands. I don’t get it.

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All in all, this episode’s a huge mess. It’s so sloppy, I’m actually kinda flabbergasted. There’s nothing inherently wrong with the premise – team of ‘heroes’ is all for justice and saving people, but end up unwittingly causing trouble – but everything else is so weird. First of all, I get why this episode is taking place in the 90s, to seemingly capitalize on Super Sentai, but there’s no important ‘historical’ figure to focus on.

We got to see Dr. Yamato’s distant relative, who for some reason looks exactly like him, but he didn’t impact the plot in the slightest. He’s a big coward and….that’s it. After his girlfriend dumped him, he disappeared entirely. We never even get a glimpse of him after that, and he’s never mentioned again. What was the point of showing him here? If it was to set up the Redman saving people, there are much better ways of achieving that. Just show that woman getting attacked by the thug and getting saved by the Redman. The end.

I thought with the emphasis on heroism and Yamato being a coward that they’d help him be braver and maybe be the hero in the end so he could get back with his girlfriend. Afterall, she even said directly how he was supposed to be her hero. But nope. Pointless.

In the dub, Jillian said they were more preoccupied with publicity than justice, but we never saw anything like that. They just took pictures after every save, so that was misdirect.

There’s a sudden random shift to an anti-smoking PSA in the middle of the dub too.

The stuff about them causing trouble also didn’t do much. They didn’t care, and no one around them yelled at them or ostracized them. They didn’t apologize, either. Pointless.

What the hell was their bad transformation thing? I still don’t get it. It was a demonic Joker/centipede with a scythe? How does that relate to Super Sentai or tokusatsu?

Why was there a one-on-one western or samurai-esque duel added? Is that a thing they do in Super Sentai? Because it just seemed like an excuse for more padding since most of it was just all of the characters standing completely still for over a minute. The old lady, kid and cat pleading with him to change back should have been what made him change back – not winning a duel with Genshi.

Admittedly, the episode was salvaged a tiny bit by also having the Redman’s super transformation be in this episode as well, and TP Lady, Dyna and Mite got some hilarious moments, but other than that it was so disjointed and didn’t even feel like it had an actual story. I’m especially disappointed that Saban didn’t take this opportunity to just have a blast making Power Ranger jokes. Even if that meant changing the original script quite a bit, it would have been welcome because the original was already a disaster. You have the rights to the show, you have Barbara Goodson, you have a Super Sentai parody episode sitting in front of you – what more do you need?

But no.

Even the original barely did anything with this premise.

I had my hopes up pretty high for this episode too. :\

Next time, we’ll be heading to 16th century Italy to hang out with the space-time monster, Monarisu, who is basically the opposite of Horurun in that she turns people into art.


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AniManga Clash! Yu-Gi-Oh! Season Zero Episode 10: The Approaching Beautiful Teacher’s Secret Mask/Manga Chapter 7

(Normally I would custom-make a header image, but this chapter title card was way too cool.)

This is our first instance of a plot revolving around Honda in the anime (and…pretty much ever, manga-wise) and the only instance of Miho existing in the manga. Why she was specifically chosen to be main girl character #2 in the anime is beyond me, but just be thankful she’s not in the 2000 anime.

I suppose it might have simply been because she is really the only other female student that is ever given even a modicum of focus in the manga, which is pathetic to say the least. Usually, the main girl in a group of mostly guys in an anime will have one or two girls who are barely-there side friends just to prove that the girl doesn’t only hang out with guys or something. But nope. Manga!Anzu’s in a sausage fest.

Jonouchi brings Honda to Yugi to help him with a problem – Honda is love sick for a girl named Miho, whom he’s nicknamed Ribbon-chan because she wears a ribbon (the amount of cleverness is high.) He needs advice on a gift to get her attention. Honda doesn’t want Yugi’s help at first and is quite rude and threatening to him about it, even strangling him a few times. However, Yugi, being a precious cupcake, decides to help him anyway. And, again, being Yugi, they go to his grandpa’s game shop to find a present.

Sugoroku hears his plight and grabs a blank puzzle, citing it as the gift he used to woo Yugi’s grandma. It’s weird, I never once thought about Sugoroku’s wife before. I wonder why they never bother talking about her….then again this show really doesn’t like explaining where anyone’s parents are or who they are, so it’s probably asking too much to think they’d include information on grandparents. Though, oddly, the one person on Yugi’s family tree that we do get the most info on is Sugoroku.

Anyhoo, the blank puzzle is used for messages. You write a love note on the puzzle and break it into pieces. Your loved one will complete the puzzle, see the message and, if all goes well, return your feelings. It’s a bit convoluted, especially if the person doesn’t want to do the puzzle or doesn’t return the confessor’s feelings, but it is fairly romantic.

Honda gets Yugi to write the note for him, which takes him all night, and they put the puzzle in Miho’s desk.

You might be wondering why I haven’t so much as mentioned episode ten yet. That’s because the adaptation of this episode had to be drastically changed since Honda and Miho’s dynamic is so different in the anime, and she’s an actual main character there. They could have had an episode like this where Honda decides to confess his love for Miho through a puzzle. It’s not that difficult to change up a few things and make that plotline work.

Maybe if he was actually shot down he’d stop being such a pathetic doofus around her. But why bother trying to think about how you could adapt the story properly and maybe even develop Honda’s character a little when you can pretty much just cheat in a manner we’ll talk about shortly.

The next scene in the manga is basically adapted just fine, though. Chouno-sensei is an incredibly beautiful teacher at their school, fawned over by many of the boys, but she’s also an incredibly strict devil woman. In the anime, she merely takes some girl’s charm off of her bag since it was against the rules, but in the manga she’s known as The Expelling Witch, having expelled 15 students in six months. She’s also very egotistical and wears gobs of makeup. In the anime, she’s so strict that she is trying to coerce (Read: seduce) the vice-principal into banning all personal items from school and increasing penalties for rule breakers.

Can I take the time to point out that the show is trying to torment my eyes again? What the hell is Chouno wearing? For someone who supposedly puts so much time and effort into their appearance, she chose a butt-ugly skirt suit.

The main plot starts here in the anime, and it’s pretty much the same plot as the Honda/Miho plot from the manga with the main difference being that the one with the crush is a completely new girl named Mayumi, who has hair that matches Chouno’s gross green skirt suit, yay. She likes Jonouchi and wants to confess to him. Anzu and Miho recruit Yugi to help her confess to Jonouchi, and he suggests going to the game shop where they get the same type of message puzzle.

There is a small running gag in the anime where, whenever someone asks what Jonouchi would like for a gift, they respond by saying he likes lewd videos. I thought that was pretty funny.

Believe it or not, even though they didn’t really have to change this plot so much, the anime’s arrangement makes more sense. At least it’s canon that Jonouchi likes games. Who’s to say Miho would like the puzzle or even try to complete it? This would make the most sense if Yugi was the recipient, but no one his age ever seems to have an actual crush on him – and that includes Anzu….

In the anime, Mayumi is the one who writes on the puzzle, not Yugi. I guess this makes more sense because she barely knows Yugi.

In the manga, we only hear about Chouno’s marriage interview when she’s discussing it with the vice principal. She says he didn’t deserve her and walks away.

In the anime, we actually see her marriage interview, and she mostly seems to use it to fish for compliments on her appearance. A little boy is playing around the area where they’re having their interview and accidentally runs into her. Chouno knocks the boy down and chastises him for dirtying her kimono, calling him a brat. He runs off crying, and Chouno laments on how terribly kids are brought up these days. Then her date dumps her after the spectacle – understandably so.

The thing about this change is that it’s not just adding the marriage interview, it’s also changing her character a tiny bit. In the manga, she’s a pure cold-hearted bitch who is toying with men and punishing them for no reason.

In the anime, while she’s still just a bitch, they inadvertently make her a little sympathetic. Fishing for compliments makes her seem like she has severe self-esteem issues, and having her be the one who got dumped leaves the door open for sympathy.

The conversation later when the vice principal asks her how her date went is kept the same as the one at the start of the manga chapter, but it’s made different because they showed the interview. Likewise, the following scene where she smashes the bathroom mirror and goes off about how she was planning on dumping the guy anyway and that she only uses marriage interviews to toy with men is also kept the same, but they add in a slight bit of her being extra insulted because the guy dumped her.

In the manga, for all we know, she did just toy with the guy and dumped his ass like old mop water so she could relish in his humiliation. But in the anime we know she was dumped, and nothing in inner monologue suggested she was going to dump him, though she was obviously just using him for an ego boost. Now it just seems like she’s embarrassed and she’s trying to make excuses to save face….hehe, save face…That joke will sense a bit later.

Bear in mind that I’m not saying anything the anime is adding is making her someone to root for or feel sorry for, especially when you consider the later events, but they did add a slight bit more depth to her character by making subtle changes. It’s not big change or anything, but it’s better than just making her fully two-dimensional.

In the manga, Chouno, being pissed off, decides to calm herself by springing a surprise inspection on the class. She wants them to empty their bags and their desks and will be thoroughly punished if she finds anything out of line. Funnily enough, when she’s listing off items that are against the rules, she mentions condoms – and they’re the most prominently displayed word in the text. I never thought I’d ever see the word ‘condoms’ in anything Yu-Gi-Oh related, but here I am.

To make this even funnier, she thinks this with such a creepy look on her face, and she’s yelling it.

Miho brings out the present and Chouno takes it away, shocking everyone and embarrassing Miho.

In the anime, Chouno just tells them to get out their textbooks. Jonouchi finds the present on accident while trying to get his book.

In both versions, Chouno rips the wrapping paper off of the gift and starts slowly trying to humiliate Miho/Jonouchi by putting the puzzle together and revealing the message.

In the manga, Yugi and Jonouchi stand up and try to claim the puzzle as their own to prevent Honda from being embarrassed or getting punished. Touched by their gesture, Honda decides to take the rap anyway and admits that it was his message and puzzle. Chouno can’t know for certain which boy is actually telling the truth, so she decides to complete the puzzle to see who signed it. She’s very close to revealing the name when Yami emerges and turns the puzzle into a Shadow Game.

In the anime, Anzu decides to take the heat for it, believing she can merely tell Jonouchi it was a prank. She’s told to go to the advisor’s office later, where she debates with Chouno on the ethical nature of the strict rules that she loves to enforce, particularly those of ‘distractions’ like a harmless puzzle or a part-time job. She tells Chouno that she believes many other students are on her side about this issue, so Chouno tells her to prove it by gathering the signatures of other students.

As Anzu prepares to do that exact thing, Chouno lies to the other teachers acting as if Anzu is a threatening troublemaker who is looking to appeal all the rules in the school.

Anzu starts putting up posters and gathering signatures. She admits that doing this is both for the sake of the students’ happiness and for allowing her to work her part-time jobs without worrying about getting caught.

Apparently, Chouno was able to convince the other teachers of Anzu’s misdeeds, especially with her posters up everywhere, so they start harassing her. Her posters get vandalized, and she starts getting unfairly targeted by her teachers in class. Despite this, Anzu keeps trying her best, though apparently she has zero signatures? I thought Jonouchi was going to sign it, and wouldn’t Miho, Yugi and Mayumi sign it immediately? Maybe Honda wouldn’t because he’s all about school rules, even if he doesn’t support Chouno’s behavior, but he’s pretty loyal to his friends. Surely he’d do it if Miho asked him, anyway.

Miho explains that there’s a rumor going around school that anyone who has signed has been targeted by Chouno and her fellow teacher cronies, which either isn’t true because she has no signatures or isn’t true because it hasn’t happened, as Anzu attests.

Anyway, pre-soft-reboot Yu-Gi-Oh being what it is, of course Anzu and Yugi get bullied. Three assholes mock her and take her sign-up sheets. They push Yugi to the ground and tear up her papers. Jonouchi comes over to confront the guys, one of them ironically calling him a rule-breaker. Jonouchi, unable to stomach this abuse to his friends, tackles the guy to the ground and punches him to face.

Obviously, this a big no-no, so Chouno brings them all to the advisor office for punishment. Anzu tries to take the full blame again, and Chouno threatens her with expulsion. She releases them all, explaining that the staff will decide Anzu’s fate tomorrow. She brings the three assholes into the room for their ‘punishment’ next.

They all leave, barring Yugi, who listens in at the door. Not surprisingly, Chouno was the one pulling the strings behind the three assholes. In exchange for expunging their records, they were told to harass Anzu and Yugi and get them to break the rules.

Shocked at this revelation, Yugi triggers Yami’s emergence.

Shadow Game

So, here’s the deal. In the manga, the Shadow Game really isn’t a Shadow Game so much as Yami utilizing the power of the Puzzle to warp Chouno’s face into a crumbling jigsaw puzzle (Though, oddly, we never get to see her ‘ugly’ face) and never allowing her to complete the puzzle to find out the confessor’s name. Chouno runs off in terror and uh….that’s it. The end. Of the Shadow Game anyway. Chouno is never seen again, either.

In the anime, Yami confronts Chouno in the hall and offers to play a game. If he wins, Anzu and her friends don’t get any punishment. If he loses, he’ll keep quiet about her using the students to further her own twisted plans, and he’ll willing be her pawn. She accepts.

Yami throws two mirrors up into the air. Each falls on their respective sides of the table and shatter into pieces, which was a really sick move. Yami always knows how to do these games in style. Whomever puts the mirror back together first wins. However, there’s a catch. They each have to be wearing blindfolds.

Chouno accepts, and the game starts. Before they actually get into it, however, Yami offers Chouno a pair of gloves to keep her from getting cut.

They start putting the mirror back together, but of course Chouno just takes the blindfold off because she knows Yami won’t see her. As they work, Yami reveals that this is actually a Shadow Game – if she cheats, there will be dire consequences. Chouno doesn’t think anything of it, but keeps up her blindness act as they continue to work. He’s halfway done, but she only has one more piece. She completes the puzzle, but Yami knows she has cheated.

He calls her out on her misdeeds and starts her penalty game. Her face turns into a crumbling puzzle, and beneath the pieces lies an old ugly sagging face. Chouno runs off in horror, but that’s, surprisingly, not the full end for her. Later, we see that she’s still preoccupied with her looks and vehemently supports stern rule enforcement, but now, whenever she goes too far with it, she hallucinates her face start cracking away and excuses herself. Apparently, she’s even caking on more makeup than usual because she’s trying to cover the cracks and it won’t stick.

Meanwhile, at the end of the manga, Honda formally confesses to Miho and gets shot down. However, Yugi points out that his friendship with Jonouchi and Honda has grown as a result of their ordeal.

At the end of the anime, Chouno’s plans seemingly fall apart, but it’s very unclear if Anzu got her wish to lighten up the rule on part-time jobs. Jonouchi asks Anzu what was up with the puzzle message, and like she claimed she’d do earlier, she just says it was a prank and he brushes it off. Miho tells Anzu it’s all okay because, get this, during this whole fiasco, Mayumi fell for an upperclassman and confessed to HIM, so they’re dating now.

……Mayumi, you were barely a character…but FUCK OFF. Anzu, Yugi and Jonouchi went through all of this bullshit because of you, and not only do you not help Anzu with her goal, but in the two days this was all going down you just decide you don’t like Jonouchi anymore, fall for someone else, confess to them and start dating them? What a bitch. The only reason they wrote this in is because they didn’t want this character to return and they were too lazy to write a proper resolution to that plotline.

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The anime definitely has the edge over the manga in pretty much every respect this time. In both scenarios, there’s a one-off character I couldn’t care less about (Though Mayumi is more of a bitch than Manga!Miho. At least she let Honda down gently), but the story is much more fleshed out in the anime version.

By the end, even though they added a layer or two to Chouno’s character, she was still extremely hateable. That guy who dumped her might as well be named Neo because he dodged a bullet.

I like how they showed that, even though she technically escaped the Shadow Game illusion, she’s still trapped seemingly forever, and it’s forcing her to keep changing her ways. It makes me think that this might be the case for everyone else, though considering Manga!Kaiba and Mokuba, probably not.

Having Anzu take the stage with this story was also a lot better than focusing on Honda. She’s a more interesting character, she already has a bone to pick with Chouno in regards to the rules being a hindrance on her, and I felt really bad for her when she was being harassed.

They obviously greatly improved on the manga’s shadow game, which wasn’t even really a game. And, like I mentioned, despite the punishment being the same between versions, we never see the ‘ugly’ face everyone, including Chouno, hallucinated at the end. Considering how scary this art can be when it’s just trying to be normal, they could have had a field day trying to make a purposefully ugly face, but they couldn’t be bothered.

The game itself was really cool. Yami even broke the mirrors in a cool way and put on his uniform in that badass manner where he uses his jacket as basically a cape. The broken mirrors also had symbolism in reflecting her ugly insides and being a sendup to her breaking the mirror earlier.

It’s subtle, but there are some cute little hints of Yugi’s crush on Anzu peppered throughout the episode. This was a good way to keep the theme of romance throughout, even if it was just slightly. However, it does bother me a little because, even in the soft-rebooted series, Anzu is definitely more romantically attracted to Yami than Yugi, if she even has an iota of feelings for Yugi at all. It’s just sad. The only reason they’d ever get together is if she waited about ten years when Yugi magically becomes a carbon copy of Yami, as far as we were able to tell from that one shot in GX anyway.

That’d be an uncomfortable situation. Imagine them in bed and her being like ‘Can I call you Yami or Atem?’

Overall, a decent story on the manga side and a pretty good episode on the anime side.

Winner: Anime

Next time, Miho and Yugi enter the world of Capsule Monsters.


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AniManga Clash! Yu-Gi-Oh! Season Zero Episode 9: Explosion! Yo-Yo Ultimate Technique/Manga Chapters 48-49 (Notes on 11-12)

Plot: Jonouchi is showing off his awesome yoyo skills, but he’s halted when a boy named Nezumi rains on his parade. He hates yoyos because a group of thugs with yoyos attacked him the previous day. Jonouchi and Yugi declare that they’ll help him get revenge on the yoyo-ing thugs, but quickly find out that it’s a trap laid by Jonouchi’s old comrade turned enemy, Hirutani.

He wants Jonouchi back on his side, and he’s willing to do anything to achieve his goals, including trying to kill Yugi.

Breakdown: In typical fashion, anything involving Miho is 100% anime exclusive. This week, she expresses interest in the yoyo, but Honda tells her not to do it because he’s afraid she’ll…get hurt and die?

However, Honda is actually in the first scene where Jonouchi is messing around with his yoyo. Like always, manga-wise, though, he’s just kinda there. In the anime, he catches Jonouchi’s yoyo to make him stop. In the manga, Nezumi made him stop by yelling at him and explaining his story.

Nezumi doesn’t seem to exist in Season Zero, unless he’s that guy who gets attacked in the cold open, but he doesn’t look a thing like he does in the manga if it is meant to be him.

Let me get this out of the way, yes, the concept of this story is super goofy even for Yu-Gi-Oh. The concept of a yoyo gang is about as silly as the bicycle gang in Pokemon, but at least they were plausible, especially since they were on a stretch of road that was meant only for bikes. A gang that mainly uses yoyos as a weapon? I mean, yeah they’d hurt if they hit you, but they’re certainly not the most efficient weapons in existence – most notably because, once they hit their target they usually stop spinning, meaning you have to manually yank them back and manually wind the string back up to throw it again.

Can someone please explain to me why they live in a world where elementary school students are whipping out switchblades and uzis but one of the most feared near adult age gangs in town wields a bunch of yoyos?

Since Nezumi doesn’t exist in this version, the reason Jonouchi wants to go out to challenge the yoyo gang is because they’ve just been harassing people in general and he wants to put a stop to it. I kinda don’t mind this change because Nezumi gets away at the end of this arc in the manga and ultimately vanishes entirely. It’s clear that he was a willing participant in this, not threatened or blackmailed into luring them down there, so it’s a little disappointing that he never got comeuppance.

A very short scene of Yugi at home worrying about Jonouchi is not present in the manga.

From this point until the commercial break, pretty much everything is adapted from chapters 11-12, which I covered in the review of that arc. If you haven’t already, please go read that review. Not a ton is changed between versions, but it’s still a good idea to read that and check back here afterward.

This is still technically in regards to chapters 11-12, but Honda interrogates one of the Rintama gang members outside of the bar before going in. That’s not present in the anime. Additionally, when Yugi and the gang entered the bar, they found the gang member that hit Yugi on the ground, but Jonouchi is nowhere to be found. Fearing the worst, they all split up, but Yugi finds Jonouchi by asking the Puzzle to help him.

In the anime, they ask the bartender what’s up. He tells them that, if the gang is not at the bar, they’re likely either in a fight on the streets or in the warehouses, since that seems to be their base. The bartender notices that they’re Domino High students and tells them to avoid the Rintama gang because they recently coerced a Domino High student into joining them.

Yugi proclaims, out loud, that the bartender must be talking about Jonouchi and that he really was forced into joining back up with the gang.

Then possibly one of the stupidest things they ever could have done happens. Honda lies to the girls…again…and says Jonouchi is probably just hanging out with old friends. Miho happily agrees and says he’ll probably be back in school tomorrow. Anzu also agrees and says he’ll be back to swing around his silly yoyo like he was before. Then they leave.

……Are Anzu and Miho braindead? Are they deaf? They’ve been right next to Honda and Yugi during this whole conversation. They just heard the bartender say that the gang coerced a Domino High student to join them and Yugi proclaiming Jonouchi was forced into being a gang member….but Honda brushes it off like he’s just hanging around with old buddies and Miho and Anzu are like ‘Oh phew, that’s a relief. Let’s go home!’

Even if they, for reason, ate up this excuse without question, are they also forgetting that they saw Jonouchi being entirely complacent with the gang beating up some poor guy, the fact that Jonouchi said he didn’t know Yugi and the others and that he both said and did nothing when one of the gang punched Yugi in the face? You’re either ignoring or forgetting ALL of that and are just expecting him to be at school tomorrow like nothing happened? What the hell is wrong with you two?

The only reason I can see for them doing this is that they wanted the girls out of the picture so they could head to the warehouses and get Jonouchi back, but it was entirely unnecessary. What was wrong with the manga version where they split up to find Jonouchi and Yugi manages to find them with the Puzzle? If you need Honda to be there in the anime, just have them split up in teams of two and tell them to not engage with Hirutani and the gang without getting the others first, as they did in the manga.

This scene just serves to make Anzu and Miho look like oblivious idiots and all for the purpose of ‘gurlz kant b envolvd n sumthing soooo danguriss!!’ Even though they have been involved in a multitude of dangerous things, so this just seems pointless even in canon.

When Honda and Yugi arrive at the warehouse, they try to convince Jonouchi to come with them, explaining that they know he was forced to join the gang, but Jonouchi stands firm against their claim and says he’s with them by choice and is sick of his life adhering to rules and pretending to be their friend.

Honda presents the band to Jonouchi, pleading with him to remember their friendship. Jonouchi drops the band on the floor, steps on it and punches Honda in the stomach.

The next day, Honda and Yugi head to Rintama High. Honda challenges Hirutani to a fight – if he wins, Jonouchi goes free. Hirutani agrees and whips out his yoyo….his yoyo with retractable spikes…. Ya know, between this episode’s gimmick and the last episode with the fully realistic adult woman marionette being controlled by a dude behind a curtain with two pieces of wood, I’m really just finding my footing in the marvelous insanity of this series. I’m not kidding, it’s a hilariously fun ride when it’s not being miserable.

By the way, Hirutani doesn’t even have his own yoyo in the manga.

Honda gets felled rather quickly, and when Hirutani throws his yoyo for a final blow, Yugi steps in the way. His Puzzle deflects the yoyo back at Hirutani, cutting his face.

Hirutani is not happy about this, so he ties up Yugi in the warehouse and has his goons relentlessly wail on Yugi. In the manga, both Jonouchi and Yugi (With Nezumi) had entered the warehouse and when Yugi got jumped they literally hung him by his Puzzle. Jonouchi had to concede to Hirutani or else Yugi would die.

Jonouchi enters the warehouse and tells Yugi once more that he shouldn’t keep pursuing him. With a flick of his yoyo (….That sounded dirty) he seemingly tries to attack Yugi, but ends up hitting one of the guys who was beating him up instead. Jonouchi challenges Hirutani for going back on their deal. He said if Jonouchi joined their gang, he’d leave his friends alone, but now that he’s broken that promise, Jonouchi wants to take Hirutani down.

The other gang members surround Jonouchi with their yoyos, which is also what happens in the manga. I assume all of their yoyos are metal and not plastic, so they’d definitely hurt being hit by them, but in each version Hirutani’s acting like it’d be absolute torture to walk through the hail of yoyos. Yeah, it’d hurt, but again, once they’d hit their target, they’d fall. And, really, how insulting would that be to their friendship? “Yeah, I love ya, Yug, but I ain’t getting smacked with a few yoyos to save yer life. Deuces!”

Admittedly, it is extremely sweet when, in both versions, Jonouchi braves the yoyo storm and tries to protect Yugi, but you really have to focus on the fact that he’s being nearly beaten to death and ignoring the fact that the weapon of choice is a bunch of yoyos. The manga is more dramatic and sweet, in my opinion, though.

In the manga, Jonouchi saves Yugi by giving him a boost and allowing the Puzzle’s rope to gain enough slack to be removed from the hook. Jonouchi then asks to borrow the Puzzle and spins it in front of the yoyos, getting the strings tangled up with the Puzzle and stopping their assault. He then takes their yoyo strings and hooks them up to the hanging hook, lifting them up in the air by their fingers, which is insanely dangerous, but also quite easy to get out of.

In the anime, Hirutani tries to shoot his spiked yoyo at Jonouchi, which gives Jonouchi the opening he needs to throw his own yoyo, deflecting Hirutani’s yoyo and….somehow…Jonouchi’s yoyo slices the rope and frees Yugi.

Sooo….is Jonouchi’s yoyo super sharp or is this just stupid?

Once Yugi is freed, Jonouchi is knocked down by a swift strike to the back of his head via one of the bigger gang members. This finally prompts Yugi to transform into Yami. Jesus, Yami, what took you so long? It took him the same amount of time to transform in the manga, but still, why did it take so long?

In both the anime and the manga, the other gang members chase after Yami, who has escaped to the roof. Yami reveals that he also, for some reason, has a yoyo, and he has some rad skillz with it.

Shadow Game (Kinda)

Yami challenges the thugs to a game. Whoever is the last one on the roof wins. Yami runs from the gang, simply grazing the roof with his yoyo as he runs around and dodging the strikes of the gang, who are also frequently hitting the roof when they miss Yami. They corner Yami on the roof and proclaim that they’ve won. However, Yami turns the table on them and directs their attention to the roof below their feet. It’s rusted and old metal, easily punctured with a yoyo, but it will soon crumble beneath their weight. Yami is supported on the corner beam of the warehouse, but the thugs aren’t so lucky and fall through the roof.

This game is exactly the same as it is in the manga….and yes, it’s just as silly. I mean, if the roof were THAT weak, they never should have been able to stand on it in the first place, let alone run around like it’s a basketball court.

Meanwhile, Jonouchi challenges Hirutani to a fist fight. Jonouchi is getting the better of Hirutani, but he plays dirty and throws BROKEN GLASS INTO JONOUCHI’S EYES. Geez. You’d think that would leave Jonouchi with lasting vision problems and maybe even blindness, but nope. He’s temporarily blinded but perfectly fine by the end of the chapter/episode…

In the manga, after Jonouchi struck Hirutani, causing him to hang from the ledge, Jonouchi was just fine. However, in the anime, he also falls for some reason. Honda saves him by throwing him the band, which he used to hang from the hook and return to the ledge. That sure was necessary.

In both versions, Jonouchi uses ‘Walk the dog’ (Or Jonouchi’s version “Let the Dog Out.”) on Hirutani’s fingers, causing him to fall. By the way, in Season Zero, you can clearly see that Jonouchi’s yoyo has ‘Made in USE’ written on it. Quality products always come from the United States of ‘Erica. (In the manga, it says ‘Made in the USA’)

In the manga, Jonouchi reunites with Yugi and proclaims that he’ll kick Nezumi’s ass if he ever sees him again and that’s the end of the chapter. In the anime, he thanks Honda for saving his life and Yugi happily returns affirming that Jonouchi would never change like that.

Meanwhile, back in school, Jonouchi tries his variant on ‘Around the World’ again, but this time he does it so fast that the wind causes Anzu and Miho’s skirts to fly up. They get pissed and Jonouchi runs off. The end.

—————————————-

Well, that was a bit complicated to compare, but as a whole….The manga does both stories better than the anime’s combination of the two. It’s to be expected. They’re not only merging four chapters but two stories into one episode, but it’s not just that. The little changes that they made that didn’t need to happen just made the story worse off, if you ask me.

That scene with Anzu and Miho is still irking me, and, overall, I feel like Honda’s presence was poorly written in this entire episode. It’s like they’re having Honda and Yugi struggle for the spot of Jonouchi’s best friend but no one will point out that Yugi’s obviously winning. It’s like they adapted the manga chapter pretty well and then the anime writers wrote on the script ‘Oh yeah, and Honda’s there too.’

The backstory they made for Jonouchi and Honda was just stupid. He passed off a band to Jonouchi in a track meet, which he was meant to do, Jonouchi won and they’ve been buddies ever since?….But they also don’t seem to be all that close? In the anime, Honda may fight people if need be, but he’s not a fellow ex-bully like Jonouchi. He’s a rule-abiding, strict goodie-two-shoes. The only thing we really know about Honda’s past is that he aimed to be class president but didn’t get the role.Those two would never hang out pre-Jonouchi’s attitude change, but yeah, I totally believe that pink track band is a huge emotional symbol of their friendship.

In the manga, it makes more sense because Honda is an ex-thug like Jonouchi and hung around with him because he liked picking fights. He’s still a superfluous character, if you ask me, but his story makes more sense. In neither story does Honda play a big role outside of explaining Jonouchi’s family situation, for the most part, and Jonouchi’s past with Hirutani, and that’s all he really needs to do.

Instead, he’s jammed in here like broken glass in Jonouchi’s non-blind eyes. Reading the manga alongside watching the anime really makes that moment when Honda saves Jonouchi stick out like a sore thumb as something that felt like it was tacked on. Did he even need that band? Wouldn’t it have been easier and more realistic to just grab the hook itself? How did he have time to both catch it and loop it on the hook without having time to just grab the hook? Would it even support his weight? How did Honda even throw it up that high? It’s a frickin’ band of fabric.

In addition, the more emotional moments were better in the manga, and I liked that it was moreso a great moment for Jonouchi and Yugi’s friendship instead of having Honda butt his nose into it. Like I said before, Honda can exist and Jonouchi can have more than Yugi as a friend, but Honda doesn’t have any purpose being as prominent as a character as he is in the anime.

I know this tirade seems contradictory given my statement in the review of chapters 11-12 where I praise them for giving Manga!Honda more story to work with, but that’s mostly because his presence so far in the manga has been to be set dressing. It’s nice to see him get a bit of an actual role in their dynamic, but as I’ve pointed out here, he doesn’t need to be anymore prominent than that. If Hanasaki, an objectively much better character, has to be dumped almost entirely, Honda can be mostly in the background too. Either that or give him more independence and agency as a character. Stop making him entirely reliant on those around him.

The yoyos make this whole story rather goofy, of course. I do think yo-yos are a fun weapon idea, and I’ve seen before in Yu Yu Hakusho and HunterxHunter, but there they were enhanced/created with supernatural abilities, not bought at Target in a three-pack for $9.99. They really easily could have just adapted the first story and been all the better off for it. It’s a much more dramatic story, and it’s pretty much the one they adapted outside of all the yoyo stuff and the psuedo-shadow game.

Or, here’s a thought, maybe try keeping both stories. Hirutani’s return, barring the silly yoyos, was well done. We needed a reprise for this storyline where Jonouchi actually comes out on top over his former comrade. The first story provided the backbone and the last story provided the payoff. It’s not like they don’t have filler episodes they can lose to squeeze it in there.

Another thing I didn’t care for was the way Jonouchi acted. In the manga, he has to struggle to restrain himself when Yugi is punched. He doesn’t even make it more than 10-15 minutes before he punches the guy who did it. That punch was more than enough to break their deal, and Jonouchi knew that.

In the anime, Yugi gets punched by the same gang member and he deals with it, even though that should have broken their deal. He socks Honda in the stomach, sending him to the ground and thinks nothing of it, which makes no sense. I get that he’s trying to convince them that he’s bad and to leave him alone, but he’s trying to save his friends from getting hurt and here he is punching one of them.

Next time….

Final Notes: Hirutani never once makes an appearance in the 2000 anime, nor is he referenced, but he does make an appearance in one of the video games. And when I found this out, I was kinda floored.

Hirutani is in the Dungeon Dice Monsters video game for the Game Boy Advance, only his name in that version, in the American release, is Diesel Kane. I love the Dungeon Dice Monsters video game, and I actually remembered that dude. It’s really cool that he’s not just some generic thug made for the game, but I wish they had explored this dynamic more in the actual game. All I remember and all the Wiki says is that the guy has a vendetta against Jonouchi, but you never find out what it is.

All of his gang members, both from the taser story and the yoyo story, are also in the game but they’re never given names.

Coincidentally, Nezumi also exists in the DDM game……..And his name is changed to…..Nibbles. Look, I get that both names are a reference to West Side Story, but that name is just as silly as a gang using yoyos as weapons.

Apparently, a ton of manga-exclusive characters are in DDM with funny names. For example, the escaped convict from the Burger World story is Jackpot, the old bald guy who owned the store Mokuba stole a Capsule Monsters machine from is Egger Baldwin, Kokurano (fortune-telling character we’ll meet later) is named Fortuno,Kujirada is named Beluga (Get it?! Because whale! He’s fat!….Again!) Sozoji is named Fender Shrill, and Hanasaki is named Lint Greendale…….LINT. His name is LINT! Hasn’t this kid been through enough without naming him Lint?

….Also, Yugi’s mother’s in DDM, which I didn’t remember at all. She doesn’t get a goofy name, but she is merely called ‘Yugi’s Mother.’ Like, guys, I assume she has a real name. At the very least, she’s Mrs. Muto…..


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Space-Time Detective Genshi-Kun/Flint the Time Detective: Episode 13 (39 for the Dub) Omochan’s Christmas | Sub/Dub Comparison

Plot: It’s Christmastime! Genshi, Tokio and Sora head to 17th century France (on Christmas Eve) to find Omochan, a space-time monster who, fittingly for the season, looks like Santa and has the power to turn anything into a toy or ride. Omochan is trying to help young Maria find her mother after being separated from her four years ago. Can Genshi and the others help Maria and create a Christmas miracle?

————————————————

Hey, hey, hey, Saban’s getting into the episode swap game!

This is, obviously, a Christmas special. At the time, it was merely late April when this was set to air in America, so Saban simply plucked it from the lineup, aired it on December 17th and moved on to episode 14. The airing of this episode came rather conveniently because Flint the Time Detective would end its American run on November 5th, meaning there wasn’t too horrible of a gap between the series finale and this Christmas special.

Still, that means that, once again, our numbering system is off. Hooray.

Title Change: Omochan’s Christmas is changed to Caveman’s Christmas.

Holy crap. The angles on the kids when the shots only focus on them makes the tree look like it’s massive.

Uh….Sora tells Genshi that Santa is a messenger from God who gives gifts to all the children once a year…..I mean, yeah, Saint Nick….but…uh…I’ve never heard straight up Santa Claus be defined like that. The dub doesn’t mirror this.

Genshi asks what presents are and if they’re tasty. Fed up with Genshi asking if every single thing is tasty, everyone else answers annoyed that, yes, presents are tasty. In the dub. Flint asks if he’ll get a present too since he’s been a good boy. Then everyone, for some reason, responds annoyingly that he will. Flint still stays on the original track by hoping the present will be pizza.

The original doesn’t mention anything about mistletoe or eggnog, nor does it claim that Rei is allergic to mistletoe and finds eggnog too rich.

Why is Dr. Goodman reacting before the alarm goes off in the dub? In the original, the alarm is going off before he reacts.

The screen getting all staticy before showing Elfin is removed, I assume to make it easier to show the shot without the name plate.

Speaking of which, name plate removal.

Subbed:

Dubbed:

What a coinkydink that a space-time monster that basically acts as Santa Claus makes its appearance right at Christmastime.

They insert a shot of Flint taking the card before the kids run off.

They also insert a shot of the kids jumping on the time cycle after the shot of the kids running, which makes the scene look weird because suddenly the Christmas tree is gone.

When the time cycle activates, they insert a couple of shots of Flint, Goodman, Tony and Sarah talking for some reason.

Gotta say, out of all of the space-time monsters so far, Omochan seems like he’d be the one I’d most want as a pet. Turning literally everything into either a ride or a toy? Sign me up!

They insert a shot of Pterry talking before cutting back to the girl.

Okay….I get that they’re trying to make Elfin sound like the real Santa Claus by giving him that deep voice, but HOLY HELL STOP IT. That voice couldn’t not match that body any more. His voice in the original isn’t that great either, but it’s much more fitting than what Saban gave him.

When the girl says the same thing Sora said before about Santa being a messenger of God, they change it this time to asking if Elfin is an angel, which is basically the same thing so I’ll concede and say they left it alone.

Wow the animation on Genshi’s head is so craggy and weird when they’re shaking the empty bag.

For some reason, they add a flip screen transition between Sarah and Flint realizing the bag is empty and Flint chasing Sarah.

Name Change: Maria is changed to Monique……..*massive shrug*

Holy crap. Not only are they keeping all the religious imagery and discussions, but they also kept in the fact that Maria/Monique’s mother went missing during a war four years ago. However, unlike the original, they specify that the war was the ‘last French civil war.’ Considering this episode takes place in 1651, that would mean she went missing in 1648. As best as my research could lead me, I’m assuming they mean she was lost in The Fronde, which was a series of French civil wars that broke out as a result of the Franco-Spanish war in 1648.

Name…Given?: Maria’s mother is never named in the original. In the dub, she’s named Simone.

Maria’s mother went off to check for a safe escape route when she went missing. In the dub, she went off to find food.

Yes, Saban, add a slide whistle noise to Monique turning her head as we’re discussing her praying diligently for her probably dead mom to return to her. That’s not jarring and stupid or anything.

They insert a shot of Flint and Elfin crying after Sarah hatches the plan to go back in time to retrieve Monique’s mom.

They cut to a closeup shot of Pterry as he talks about the dangers of changing the timeline (Uh, dude….dude, really? I know you guys erase the memories of everyone when you leave, but you definitely don’t leave things untouched.)

Once Flint and the others leave, they repeat and reverse the shot of Monique and Elfin hugging and talking to extend the scene.

They extend the time travel shot to show them exiting the portal.

Flint: *at the scenes of war* “How could people do that to each other?” ………….You’re a caveman…………

See, the whole thing with pointless line changes like, say, turning ‘I’m going to look for safety’ to ‘I’m going to look for food’ is that it makes scenes where, say, Maria’s mother is trying to find a safe way to escape from a burning town, into weird moments where, for some reason, Monique and her mother are watching their town burn down around their ears and, instead of seeking safety, they’re like ‘I’m hungry.’ ‘Oh, well, sweetie, lemme go find food in this BURNING HELLSCAPE OF AN ACTIVE WARZONE OTHERWISE KNOWN AS OUR VILLAGE.’

Again, Saban, for god’s sake. The touching moment where Monique’s mother leaves her, heading to her supposed death, is not the place for a ‘haha slide whistle’ moment when her mother is simply standing up!

I love how they specifically came here to save Maria’s mom but they just watch the building fall on her and suggest saving her afterwards.

Flint: “This is horrible! Why can’t they get along!?” Cave. Man.

Rocky: “Dr. Goodman says ‘resorting to violence shows a lack of imagination.’”…….That’s uh…that’s your big anti-war sentiment, Saban? “War is caused by lack of imagination?” *lip smack* Yeah, I’m not sure I’m going to hear an acoustic guitar song with those lyrics anytime soon. Isn’t that backwards, too? Because a lot of strategies, armor, weapons, technologies etc. are insanely imaginative and were only spawned because of war. It’s sad, but true.

*Monique’s mom gets crushed by a falling building*

Flint, Tony and Sarah: “Ahhhhhhhhh..That was one of the funniest moments in this series. Their absolute lack of appropriate reaction to this person getting crushed is hilarious.

Also, they added that in because the shot where they make that noise was inserted before where Sora made the appropriate (but delayed) response of demanding they help her.

Putera/Pterry: *in response to Sora/Sarah proclaiming they need to help Maria/Monique’s mom* “No! We can’t alter history! We just have to watch the events play out.” Then why the hell did you even agree to come back in time? Chances were ridiculously high that her mother was just flatout dead. So you either came back to save her or you came back to watch her die and go

But nope. Instead, she’s relatively okay except for the fact that she has total amnesia. That’s why she never returned for Maria/Monique.

Amnesia: Being a convenient plot device since the written word was invented.

They extend the time travel shot again.

They add a reaction shot from the priest after Monique and Elfin get kidnapped. It’s pointless, but I’m fine with it because I was kinda expecting the original to have one but they didn’t for some reason. Only gripe I have with it is, because this shot takes place outside, it looks like they suddenly moved outside. Also, this shot was completely removed from its original spot. It was originally placed right before the commercial break after the priest ran outside to chase after Dyna and Mite.

In order to extend Petra telling Elfin that she’ll be keeping Monique around since she’s important to Elfin, they replay and reverse part of the shot.

They replace the scene of TP Lady, Dyna and Mite dancing around to explain what the TP stamp does to a more menacing version. I don’t like scene changes, but I kinda get this one because 1) The original’s just too goofy and 2) Dyna and Mite let go of Omochan and Maria to accompany TP Lady in this dance….so….why are they not running away?

Actually, now that I’m thinking about it, why keep Maria hostage anyway? The TP stamp is already mind control, and they’re grappling Omochan.

They extend the whipping scene for some reason.

Name Change: Waruchan is changed to Elfincon.

Name plate removed.

Subbed:

Dubbed:

This is, by far, the most disturbing bad transformation of any space-time monster. Look at that thing. It’s insane. I love it.

As TP Lady is riding away, she sings ‘Jingle bells, jingle bells, follow me all the way!’ In the dub, she just laughs.

The art in this episode is even worse than usual. The eyes especially are really boxy and distracting.

SABAN. ENOUGH. SLIDE WHISTLES.

Life would be a living hell if there was a slide whistle sound effect whenever someone did the slightest movement. I get it. You feel like you have to inject humor to keep everything from getting too heavy. But maybe….don’t? There’s a difference between comic relief and ruining any semblance of emotion a show like this can garner.

Omochan is a Santa Claus space-time monster whose power is to make toys and rides out of anything, right? So what is his bad transformation power? To make nightmare death theme park rides from hell out of anything. That is so kick-ass.

They insert the stock shot of Ototan using Fighting Spirit before he hits Dyna and Mite.

They reverse and replay the zoom-out shot of Petra looking at Monique and the others to extend the scene again.

Also, originally, TP Lady was upset because they were ignoring her. In the dub, she basically just rolls her eyes at the reunion and attacks them.

How the heck did Putera send that video message to Yamato? Ridon was nowhere near them.

Sarah: “IF YOU GIVE UP ON ME NOW, I’LL NEVER FORGIVE YOU!” Jesus, Sarah. Tone down the bitchiness. What is your problem? In the original, she yells that Nekketsu can do it.

I really thought they’d just remove this entire segment, especially considering Tokio’s in a skirt here, but the cheerleading shot is mostly left alone barring the fact that they removed ‘Nekketsu’ from the flags since Nekketsu’s named Batterball in the dub. They still left the Ns on the shirts alone, though, so you’re left wondering what that stands for.

Subbed:

Dubbed:

Name Plate removed.

Subbed:

Dubbed:

Name Change: Super Nekketsu is changed to Batterball Master.

So Super Nekketsu’s ability is to hit…..giant flaming balls….I promised I wouldn’t go for the low hanging fruit……….

The original didn’t cut to Sora talking after Tokio cheered on Super Nekketsu when the horses were surrounded like the dub does.

They insert a repeat shot of Flint running from the Ferris wheel after Petra’s reaction shot.

Really, Saban? You added a bowling pins falling down sound effect when the horses got knocked down by the Ferris wheel?

Did Maria’s mom get her memories back because Maria was in mortal danger or because she got more head trauma?

Saban, I swear to god, I will shove a slide whistle up your ass and, yes, pull the plunger while doing it so it makes a hilarious sound if you put in one more unnecessary slide whistle.

So, wait, they don’t remember Omochan/Elfin anymore….but they do remember that Maria/Monique’s mom was missing for four years…..so….how do they think they were reunited?

The real (fictional) Santa Claus is here now. I was going to call shenanigans, but it’s a Christmas special. I’ll let it slide.

Like usual, they change the establishing shots of the Land of Time to different shots because ehhhIdunno….

Uh, Toki-G, did your little balloon pig thing drink too much caffeine today? Why are you floating up and down so fast?

Also, it just occurs to me that it’s very weird Toki-G’s dub name is Old Timer. Like….was he never young?

In the original, Rei conveys what her chief told her about Genshi’s punishment regarding them changing history. She mimics her chief, temporarily taking on a happy-go-lucky tone, to say that, since it’s Christmas, Genshi won’t be punished. In the dub, this is basically kept the same, but they don’t have Jillian mimic her chief. Instead, she legitimately conveys this message as herself, which makes it seem like she was kinda out of character for a moment.

Because of this slight change, the end of the scene had to be removed. Originally, Rei shifted back to her stern self after she was done conveying the message and said ‘That is all.’ The group then fell over comically. Since this wouldn’t make sense in the dub, they just cut it.

They could very well be sparkling cider, but I’m surprised they left those bottles on the table alone.

Old Timer: “And so Flint learned the true meaning of Christmas.” Did he? Because at the end he still demanded a present, from Santa of all people, and the present in question was Santa’s hat….so he kinda….mugged him a tiny bit. Flint did a nice thing, of course, but I don’t think his understanding of Christmas is any deeper than ‘people get presents and presents are good.’ Does every Christmas special imaginable have to end with someone learning the true meaning of Christmas?

———————————————–

That was a fine episode. It really didn’t connect with me on a Christmas-y level, though. I don’t know why. There was plenty of mentions of Christmas in it, and I’m always itching to get into the holiday spirit, even when we’re fresh into summer, but it just didn’t click in that way.

I did enjoy Omochan a lot. I love that it’s basically a mini-Santa who can make toys and theme park rides out of anything. Out of all of the space-time monsters we’ve seen so far, he’s my favorite. I also adore Waruchan. That form is probably the most creative thing to come out of this show. It’s like a demonic reindeer. I love that it retains its power of making toys and rides out of objects, but the toys and rides are evil and attack people. In addition, Nekketsu’s Super form was pretty cool.

The story is fine. It touched on some real history just the tiniest bit, it was fairly emotional and it was sweet that they reunited Maria with her mom…..I just can’t help but feel the tiniest bit….cheesed. And by that I mean, the fact that she had amnesia, no one recognized her and, apparently, she never left that church and that’s the reason why she left her daughter for four years and then she conveniently remembers later on is cheesy.

I really don’t understand the logic behind why she was gone for four years. Yeah, she had total amnesia, but, in addition to that being pretty hard to swallow, you also have the insane coincidence that no one knew her somehow. They lived in that village. She couldn’t have been gone from Maria for more than a few moments, yet not only did no one in the church know who she was but I guess she just never left and went back to the main part of town to see if anyone could help her learn who she was.

Keep in mind, the church where Maria’s mom was staying was so close that Sora and Tokio could go there and back in a handful of minutes.

The dub seems like it recognizes this plot hole and tries to cover it up. When Sarah and Tony are watching Simone, Sarah says ‘And nobody knows her in this other village.’ I guess insinuating that they brought her to a different village to get treatment after the incident. I appreciate the effort, but the plot hole remains because why would they not just take her to the village she was transported from to determine her identity? Again, it can’t possibly be that far away.

I can’t help but think what would have happened if Maria’s mom really was dead. They had absolutely no reason to believe she was alive. When that building fell on her, I really thought she was dead. Legitimately. I audibly gasped. I know this is a kid’s show, but a brick building collapsed on her face. How the hell did she get away from that with just a bump on the head?

In a realistic scenario, they’d be like;

“We’re gonna go back in time to find your mom, Maria!”

*time travel*

*a few moments later*

“Oh you’re back! Where’s mama?”

“Errr, well….She kinda had a run-in with a building….or, more to the point, a building had a run-in with her! Haha….ha.”

“What do you mean?”

“Let’s just say, if your mother got a Valentine from a building that was three feet in front of her, it would say “I’m falling for you. Hope you have a crush on me.””

“….What?”

“If we had a slide whistle the last time we saw your mother, we’d play it downward.”

“I don’t understand.”

“Ya know what? We’re just going to grab Omochan and erase your memories immediately. This is getting awkward.”

Who can blame me for thinking this either? They gave the reason for their separation being WAR. And they explained in both versions that her father died in the war. They showed cannons shooting at their location. When they first went back in time, the town was BURNING TO THE GROUND.

Speaking of the war, there’s surprisingly little of a ripple effect in ‘present day’ (1651). The Fronde was still going on in 1651, but the town seems like it’s been rebuilt and everything and everyone is relatively fine.

Still, it was an entertaining episode with not too much going on in the alteration department outside of Saban being VERY shot-insertion happy. Usually, dubs will cut some stuff for time because they have more commercials than Japan typically does, but Saban must’ve added at least 30 seconds for no reason I can ascertain.

Next time, TP Lady is trying to take the space-time monsters from Genshi by making a case against him to the Time Bureau?….I have a sneaking suspicion this will be very recap/clipshow heavy…..


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Yu-Gi-Oh GX Episode 4: A Quintuple Combination! VWXYZ | Sub/Dub Comparison

Plot: It’s the monthly exams, and advancement to the next rank is possible for our boys in red if they do well enough. In an effort to get rid of Judai (again…) Cronos snakes the new shipment of rare cards that just came in for the sake of giving them to Jun so he can make him face off against Judai in his practical test and wipe him out. However, Judai’s not going down so easily.

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The original doesn’t say that the ship has been fighting off attack subs or anything since they left. They just said they need to protect that case at all costs…..Wow, with several battleships and helicopters, that briefcase must hold something incredibly valuable and not something silly.

Oh they’re rare Duel Monsters cards….yeah, that’s worth tens maybe hundreds of millions of dollars in equipment and manpower to secure during a journey. Then again, Kaiba owns this place, so I can’t be too surprised that he’d burn this much money for cards.

Also, the captain says to prepare for landing not to speed up. Hope you like crashing, dub.

While I’m shocked that they left in Shou praying to Osiris for help, they leave out the reason why he has Monster Reborn cards everywhere. He’s being symbolic because passing the monthly exam and possibly advancing him to Ra Yellow will be like resurrecting him from the dead. Also, Shou doesn’t imply that not passing this test will leave him in Osiris Red forever like Syrus does.

Speaking of the test, why exactly are they having an advancement test so soon? I can’t imagine much real time has gone by in the series. They only just enrolled.

They remove a sweatdrop from Hayato as Shou leaves.

Subbed:

Dubbed:

Judai just keeps repeating that he’s late whereas Jaden says that Chumley made him a five course breakfast presumably to make him miss the test. This was slightly poked at during a dub line insertion where Chumley said he’d go to plan B, however, this plan doesn’t make sense to me. If he’s partaking in the exam too (which he shows no indication of doing over the course of the rest of the episode, in fact I’d be hard pressed to say that he ever leaves the dorm), cooking him all of that food and supposedly eating with him would make him just as late as Jaden.

The lady recognizes Judai as a duelist and points out that he’ll be late since he has a test today. He replies by saying it’s no matter because he can’t ignore an old lady in trouble. In the dub, the lady believes Jaden’s from the auto club and Jaden says to not let the red jacket fool her because he’s just a person doing a good deed……Wait, red jacket? What does that have to do with an auto club? Am I missing something?

Daitokuji says nothing while Banner points out that they have 45 minutes left in the test.

As Shou sleeps, he keeps saying “Big bro, sorry.” in his sleep I guess because he feels guilty for leaving instead of ensuring that Judai got up even though he did try several times. Judai walks up to him and whipser-yells “Unforgivable!” Shou wakes up and Judai says that studying to the bone has no point if he’s just going to sleep through the test.

In the dub, Syrus keeps saying stuff about dueling in his sleep. Jaden walks up and says he didn’t know this was an oral exam. Syrus wakes up and Jaden says maybe Syrus should focus more on sleep instead of staying up all night hold Slifer seances…..Oh, we’re passing that off as a séance and not prayer? I honestly don’t know how to respond to that because saying that’s skirting religion sounds incredibly dumb when he was praying to a poster of a Duel Monster.

Also, how did Jaden know he was doing that at all? He was asleep that entire time.

I don’t get it. If this exam is an advancement exam, why are the Obelisk Blues there? They can’t increase in rank anymore besides seniority or graduating. Is it just mandatory testing for them?

Asuka thinks to herself that Judai’s a half hour late and that shows lack of respect/concern over the importance of the written exam. Alexis thinks to herself that Jaden’s 15 minutes late and he better hurry if he wants any chance at finishing.

Daichi’s inner monologue is roughly the same, but he also states that it’s weird how Judai has such poor studying skills and manner in the classroom yet he’s still such a skillful duelist. The dub basically says that his lack of studying skills and poor classroom manner are keeping him from being a great duelist.

They cut out a shot of an Osiris Red as he asks himself how a guy like Judai could beat Cronos.

Judai says that the practical test is what really matters, not the written exam, while Jaden says if there were a test in melodrama, Syrus would get an A. This seems so dumb to me. Why even have the written part if it can be offset at all times by practical duels? Judai/Jaden gets crappy grades and is a crappy student and he fails constantly in his written schoolwork, yet because he’s good in duels he constantly skates by, even supposedly being the closest one to advancement in Osiris Red since he beat Chronos in the entrance exams despite getting abysmal marks on the written portion of that too. I know practical skills do count for a lot, but you can’t make the written parts practically moot in exchange.

I find it funny, in a weird way, that the only students piling on top of each other and going crazy for the shipment of rare cards are the boys. I don’t even see any girls in the room.

The Group of Students Pounding the Door (dub): *robotically* “Guards! Guards! Guards!”

………….WHAT THE UNHOLY HELL WAS THAT!? Why were they talking like that?! What were they repeating “guards” in unison!? Why weren’t they raising their voices?! What the hell did I just witness?!

In the original, the students just ask what’s going on….

The envelope originally said ‘Sold’ in Kanji whereas the dub envelope is predictably blank.

Subbed:

Dubbed:

The girl at the counter looks mad when Judai runs up to them because he calls her ‘old lady’ (maybe mistaking her for the lady from earlier) before correcting himself and saying ‘miss’. In the dub, Jaden does call her ‘counter girl’ which could be kinda offensive I guess, but it really just looks like she’s bitchy for no reason.

“SP-Pack” is removed from the booster pack.

Subbed:

Dubbed:

Judai looks sad during the conversation about the booster pack because Shou accidentally calls Judai a mutual enemy, which is from his conversation with Hayato earlier. In the dub, he looks sad because Syrus implicates that without the booster pack Jaden may fail….I don’t see why. Jaden’s beat Crowler, I think he can beat other Slifer Reds…

Finishing off that conversation, Judai just tells Shou to take the deck so that they can use the time they have until the practical exam to perfect their decks together. In the dub, he says he may fail sometimes but he never fails.

The old lady, Tome, introduces herself properly to Judai and Shou while she doesn’t do that yet in the dub and instead calls Jaden ‘Auto-club’ while telling him that she owns the card shop.

Syrus: “How do you know her, Jay?”

Jaden: “Uhh, I think it was the carburetor.”

What the? That doesn’t answer his question at all.

You’re seriously telling me no one in the school recognized Crowler? I know he had on a hat and coat as a disguise, but he wasn’t changing his voice in the slightest and you could still see his long trademark blonde hair.

Jun’s friends don’t clamor over Chronos’ ‘style’ with having a bunch of cards in his coat like the dub does.

Jun points out that it’s Chronos and includes that ‘it’s the guy who got beat by Judai’. In the dub, he says ‘You look better all covered up.’ Yeah, make fun of your teachers. That’ll get you ahead.

Daichi originally thinks to himself that if Judai wins they’ll be in the same dorm and it seems incredible that a first year rose up so quickly. In the dub, he thinks the duel is a trap and only a fool would accept.

They insert shots of the characters talking to extend the scene.

Judai calls Jun ‘Manjoume’ while Jun corrects him and says ‘Manjoume-SAN’. This can’t be mirrored in the dub, really, so Chazz just says ‘Bring it!’

I guess the whole thing of calling Winged Kuriboh ‘partner/aibou’ like Yami and Yugi used to do is never going to be included like it really never was in Yu-Gi-Oh either.

The duel is one turn in (just Judai/Jaden making a play) and all he did was summon Elemental Hero Clayman and we get those overly dramatic splitscreens with other characters gasping. *Gasp* “He made a very basic first move with an otherwise unimpressive monster! My heart can’t handle this excitement!” I think they just wanted to pretend it was a really epic move or something since we were cutting to commercial, but come on, that’s just unreasonably lame.

Eyecatches:

A zoom in on Daichi as he’s talking and a far away shot of the duel is removed.

A kinda far shot of Jun talking is removed.

Jun has already explained the other special ability (Switching one of Judai’s creatures into attack mode) but this time we get the splitscreen on Shou and the shot of Shou is him reacting to the fact that Clayman has such low attack and is now in attack mode. In the dub, since they removed the shot of Chazz talking, he had no time to explain the card before the splitscreen. Instead, the splitscreen basically interrupts Chazz and Syrus just wishes his turn would end already before Chazz finally explains.

VW-Tiger Missile is changed to Heat-Seeker Blitz, which actually sounds better.

Chronos clamors over Jun’s skills while Crowler basically says Jaden’s not as impressive as everyone thought.

Shou says playing in defense mode isn’t like Judai. This line is omitted in the dub and we just cut straight to Bastion explaining that this could be all he can do right now. I should mention that Syrus also says that it’s not fair, and I would fault this on 4Kids since that’s not the same line Shou had (he just said ‘B-but’ there) but Shou has also had a slight habit of saying certain legit moves weren’t fair and even said so earlier when Jun showcased the abilities of Frontline Base.

Asuka thinks to herself that this can’t be all Judai can do right now. In contrast, Alexis says the duel is a complete mismatch and asks ‘How can he duel when he doesn’t know what he’s fighting?’ What does that line even mean? Cards are played in concealed manners (face down) all the time. It’s hardly a newly conceived tactic. Plus he only has one card face down right now.

Unless she’s talking about the fact that Chazz seems to have plenty of new cards in which case boo-friggety-hoo. Like anyone really shows their opponents their entire decks before dueling. Jaden also has new cards and has fought Chazz before so I can’t make heads or tails about what she means by this.

They cut a shot of Chronos gushing over the battle and how Judai will lose soon.

Another mention of ‘Manjoume’ ‘Manjoume-SAN’ is omitted.

Eh…this next one is a change, but technically it’s hard to call it wrong. A Hero Emerges allows the opponent to select a card from the opponent’s hand to summon at random if it’s a monster. Jun chose the card on the far left while Chazz chose the far right. The shot of Judai grabbing the card is kept the same. The thing is, neither version indicates which perspective is supposed to be used here; Jun’s or Judai’s. The original chooses Judai’s (Judai’s left) while the dub chooses Chazz’s (Chazz’s right) yet both can be correct. I’m still going to fault 4Kids here though because they have the original script and there’s really no need to change the line since it can make sense from both angles.

Another one I’m uncertain about noting, but here goes. Judai says he trusts his deck, and as long as he has monsters willing to fight by his side in his deck, he’ll never stop fighting. In the dub, Jaden says he’s not done because he has all sorts of ‘vicious monsters’ waiting to get at Chazz. The original instills loyalty and trust in his monsters and his deck as a whole while the dub is just macho “I’m gonna kick your ass with my scary monsters!” stuff.

Well, this is weird. Before, the SP-Pack text was the only text removed from the booster pack. The logo was left alone. In the dubbed flashback, the logo and text are both removed now. Guess they got digital paint happy.

Subbed:

Dubbed:

Not TOO happy, though, because before the little white oval where ‘SP-Pack’ was written was also removed, but this time it’s not. Consistency is fun.

The dub omits mentioning that Winged Kuriboh can reduce an opponent’s attack to zero with its special ability with his V-Z’s own special ability (I really hate cards that have a laundry list of special abilities. It’s understandable when the card is insanely difficult to summon, but seeing as how cards that are insanely difficult to summon constantly get miraculously summoned in this franchise, it’s hard to not get annoyed by it.)

Judai: “Our life points are the same at 1000 now. Wouldn’t it be funny if I drew a monster that had 1000 or more attack points right now?”

Jun: “What kind of crap are you spewing!? As if it’d be that easy!”

….It’d be pretty damn easy, really. It’s like…one of the easiest things ever if you have a well-balanced deck. It’s definitely a lot more believable than achieving the crap you’ve done in the span of two turns, Jun. This also isn’t present in the dub, it’s just Jaden gloating more or less.

Love the stock crowd gasp sound effects, 4Kids. You’re really amping up the quality.

I love how the other duels on the arena already concluded and absolutely no one was interested in watching them.

Samejima says the trust in Judai’s deck, the loyalty to his cards and his passionate dueling soul are the reasons that Judai is being promoted to Ra Yellow. In the dub, Shepherd just says that a Slifer Red has never fought an Obelisk Blue in the tests and showing great courage to not only take the challenge but also to win is inspiring, thus he’s being promoted. But, again, he beat a PROFESSOR in Obelisk Blue for his entrance exam but was booted to Slifer. Why is beating a student of Obelisk Blue so much more impressive?

Both versions, nice CGI confetti. Hey, did none of the other duelists advance? Is this like a one spot kinda deal? Because, if it’s not, then that means the other duelists got no confetti for their advancement. Nice.

Hayato talks about how insane it is that an Osiris Red advanced so quickly whereas Chumley is talking about making an ad for a new roommate and tells Syrus to make him a grilled cheese.

Judai talks about how he loves red more than the other colors for the reasons mentioned in episode two. In the dub, he talks about how much better yellow seems compared to red, but it’s nothing without Syrus. I should also mention that Jaden says ‘Congrats on passing your practical exam’ which means, yes, we completely skipped over Shou’s duel.

Judai says, in response to Shou’s emotional outburst, that this must be ‘passion red’. Jaden says it’s a good thing red doesn’t stain as bad as yellow……..wait, what? Tears don’t stain, do they? Also, even if they did, why would the stain be more apparent on yellow than red? Unless tears were red colored or—oh nevermind.

Next up, the group heads to a forbidden dorm to face a shadow duelist.


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Yu-Gi-Oh! (Manga) Chapter 24 Review (AniManga Clash! Season Zero Placeholder)

Hey guys, who remembers that short Yu-Gi-Oh! Spin-off thinger – Capsule Monsters? I sure do!….Kinda!…I remember it existing. I remember watching some of it and being rather bored.

Fun fact: The Capsule Monsters anime, despite being based on an actual game in this old-ass version of the manga (No idea if it’s played the same way, though), wasn’t something the original anime creators wanted to make. In fact, the series never released in Japan.

Also, apparently, according to the Fandom Wiki anyway (I really question whether this is true), despite never once airing in Japan, there is a Japanese version of it. Why they dubbed it and never released it is beyond me.

Who was actually behind this spin-off no one asked for, no one paid much attention to and amounted to nothing but basically being a money sink? Why, who else but the donut bakers themselves, 4Kids?

Yup, 4Kids, for some inexplicable reason, ‘commissioned, produced and editedCapsule Monsters when Yu-Gi-Oh’s original run was reaching its final season. They also did the kinda skeevy thing of re-editing the series into a movie (Two movies, I guess, technically?) and treating it like it was a new movie based on the series. Because that’s never sketchy or annoying, especially when you’re dealing with something aimed towards kids.

At least they released the movie for free for one day on their website for some reason so some people could be made aware that it wasn’t new content….No idea why they did that, but they did.

I really have to review Capsule Monsters at some point, but back to the topic at hand….Uh…well, more Capsule Monsters.

I brought up the anime because, even when that aired, I didn’t really understand how the game was played nor did I feel very compelled to learn because the anime, to my recollection, was quite boring.

Capsule Monsters, otherwise known as Capsule Monster Chess/Capmon in the manga (sometimes) is Mokuba’s niche game in the manga. I could’ve sworn he was also a player of the game in the anime. I would have bet a substantial amount of money on that….but he’s not. Mokuba not only isn’t an avid Capsule Monster player in the Capsule Monsters anime – he’s not even in the anime. Poor Mokuba. Were you too busy being kidnapped to be in the anime?

What of the first depiction of Capsule Monsters in the manga? Let’s find out.

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The manga actually explains fairly well how this version of the game is played. Capsule Monsters are dispensed in gashapon machines, which I just learned are supposed to be called ‘blind boxes’ in America, but I have never once heard that ever. They’re also called ‘gacha’ machines, and if you play pretty much any MMO or mobile game in existence, that word awakens something visceral in you.

Yugi explains how the game is played, for the most part. The capsules all have one number between one and five on them – this indicates their attack power. Within the capsules are….the uh…well, the monsters, of course. Each player unleashes five monsters onto an 8×8 game board, of which there are 50 different types. This game area mimics the planet of ganastar….I’m not sure why that matters, but okay.

All of the monsters stay within the capsules when they’re setting the game up, so each side starts the game mostly blind to the monsters the opponent is playing, outside of their attack strength. Monsters all have their own ranges, types of attacks and effects, so strategy comes into play when moving the pieces and battling the monsters. Whoever destroys all of the opponent’s monsters wins.

Yugi’s in line to get some capsules when, in typical Yu-Gi-Oh manga fashion, he comes across an asshole. This asshole kid cuts in front of him in line then says Yugi’s too old to play the game, being in high school. This game is equated to chess and yet it’s aimed squarely at middle school and younger?

He lets Yugi get his capsules eventually, though, but Yugi’s money gets lost in the machine. He, strangely, loses his shit and starts swearing at the machine, shaking it violently. Bit of an OOC moment for him. I know he’s passionate about games, but he’s never one to have a temper like that. The old man who owns the candy store that the machines are in starts screaming at him.

Suddenly, Mokuba Kaiba makes his debut appearance, looking just as frightening and creepy as you’d expect in this manga’s art. Apparently he’s such a Capsule Monsters baller that the other kids go silent in his presence. Like Seto is a champion in Duel Monsters, Mokuba is a champion in Capsule Monsters.

So, did you guys forget that you’re reading Yu-Gi-Oh’s early manga days? You did? Oh, let me remind you by showing you this scene where Mokuba, the small child, orders these small child children of the kid nature to attack Yugi. They have a taser………..a switchblade……………..And….I’m not kidding…..A fucking Uzi.

What kind of world does this manga take place in?! Not even the chapter with an actual murderer involved a fucking UZI.

Mokuba wants to fight for his big brother’s honor, so he’s kidnapping Yugi and taking the candy shop’s gashapon machine (After throwing the owner a stack of money to pay for it.)

They bring Yugi to their secret base, which is just a warehouse, so they can play. Beforehand, though, Mokuba’s little goons try to intimidate him some more, saying stuff like he’s wimpy and they’ll burn down his house. Ya know, typical schoolyard stuff.

They cross the line when they try to touch Yugi’s Puzzle, however, because, under threat of smashing it and trying to grab it from him, Yugi instantly shifts to Yami, who flips his shit and screams at them to let go of his Puzzle.

The goons are shocked at this change, but, surprisingly, Mokuba’s not because apparently Seto told him about Yugi’s ability to transform. *shrug*

Mokuba says he stole the gashapon machine to make the capsule picks completely blind so he wouldn’t have an unfair advantage using his own capsules…..then he reveals in inner monologue that he rigged the machine, paid off the candy shop owner from before Yugi even got there and rigged the machine to give him the better capsules anyway, so….I don’t know why he even bothered trying to act like this was fair.

Also, again with making the Kaibas cheaters. Granted, in the 2000 anime, the one and only time you see Mokuba duel, against Yugi, he cheats by trying to steal some of Yugi’s star chips in the middle of the duel, but that was in desperation to keep Kaiba Corp from being sold to Pegasus.

Yugi’s capsules result in attack strengths of 1-1-1-2-4 while Mokuba’s are 4-4-5-5-5….I think anyone with a single brain cell could have deduced that Mokuba rigged the machine just on this result alone without him immediately telling us, but okay.

Before they start, Mokuba lays a bet down. Now, you’d imagine that, considering he’s playing for his older brother’s honor, his wager would be something like Yugi would have to kiss Kaiba’s feet or give him all of his Duel Monster cards or something, right?

……His wager is, if he wins, he’ll CUT OFF ONE OF YUGI’S FINGERS! He’s even holding a folding knife as he says it. What the hell is wrong with this manga?!

Yugi says, if he wins, Mokuba will suffer a penalty game.

Anyway, as expected, even though they laid out the rules at the beginning, much like with the part with Duel Monsters, they just pretty much do whatever without explaining anything. Like, what determines which piece moves how far and when? Why do formations matter all that much if you can move freely? If attack level is all that matters in battles, then doesn’t that mean the match can be decided before they even get on the board? If monsters have effects or abilities, like duel monster cards, where is this information held? In some sort of book or something? Because there’s no text on the capsules or in them.

Yami gets pummeled, only managing to kill one of Mokuba’s creatures on a stalemated attack, so he had to sacrifice his most powerful creature for that.

He’s down to his last monster, and it seems all is lost until, luck of all lucks, Yugi reveals that he was luring all of Mokuba’s monsters into a diagonal line, and his last monster, which is level one, just so happens to have the ability to literally insta-kill any monster with its attack, even if it’s level five. And it shoots this ability in a diagonal pattern, meaning all of Mokuba’s monsters are defeated in one shot.

If you think this situation stinks at all, it’s because Yugi totally pulled this win out of his ass.

Mokuba may be a cheat, but he’s still a Capsule Monsters champion. And even if he cheated in those championships (We don’t know that, but he cheated here and it’s suggested that Seto cheated in his championships, so it’s not a far cry to say Mokuba did too) he definitely knows the game well enough to play the part. He’s making observations about strategy and formation as if he’s a veteran, so he has to be pretty skilled. All of the monsters get revealed at the start of the game, meaning he had to know what that monster was and what ability it had, so he should have been very careful to not do anything dumb like line up literally all of his monsters in a perfect diagonal line right in front of him.

How does this low-level creature have such an awesome ability anyway? If it’s a simple straight diagonal line of insta-kill damage, he could kill a monster from the other side of the board if he aimed carefully. And it insta-kills even the strongest monsters, too?

Granted, they did set this up visually. As you’ll note in the first shot of the game board when they’re done setting up, the bird thing that has this ability is off on its own, further back than his other four creatures, which were meant to cut off Mokuba’s creatures on the way there and set up this line.

The problem is, though, he gambled a hell of a lot here. I know the Heart of the Cards thing has basically become a meme by now, but come on – this isn’t even Duel Monsters. Is there a Heart of the Capsules? The luck in play here is insane. What if Mokuba caught on to his game and avoided the diagonal line? What if he sent one monster off to approach from directly ahead or off to either side? Or what if he spread out his monsters even a tiny bit more? If he didn’t get all of those monsters in one shot, he definitely would have lost. And Yami never once seemed the slightest bit concerned that his plan wouldn’t work. He was sporting a cocky smirk the whole time like his plan was foolproof when it was about as airtight as a moth’s nylon stocking.

I feel like this is the anime version (Season Zero) of the duel with Seto where Seto just pulled a sudden ‘It’s a draw lol’ card out of nowhere at the last minute, right as he was about to lose.

Anyhoo, Yami sentences Mokuba to a penalty game, which is being trapped in an illusion of being sealed in a Capsule Monster capsule (and it has a level one mark on it – nice shade, Yami.) But before it’s closed, Mokuba teases that this isn’t over. Seto is setting up for his revenge against Yugi with something called Death T.

Also, this chapter ends with a pretty cool illustration of a little dice game you can play to try and beat Kaiba. I might try it for myself sometime. It’s a neat little addition.

——————————

So, uh, this chapter was pretty messed up, wouldn’t ya say? Uzis and switchblades and threatening to cut off people’s fingers – all brought to you by elementary school students. Fun fun.

The story is alright. I still think that ending was complete bullshit, but it’s not like this series is a stranger to bullshit wins. Mokuba’s a friggin’ psychopath in this version, and I can’t really tell if I love that or hate it. In the 2000 anime, he’s kinda Seto’s morality pet more or less, but, on his own, he’s really not all that interesting. He’s basically Tristan just with more of a purpose (behind the scenes anyway) and 10000% more kidnappings. He’s a nice little kid with a good sense of justice and very strong loyalty to Seto, and he’s very forgiving, but he’s just not that interesting.

Can I even say this version of Mokuba is more interesting, though? Because he’s just a nutcase. There’s nothing likable about this future mob boss besides his desire to avenge his brother’s honor, and that’s kinda watered down by the fact that he doesn’t even try to face Yugi/Yami properly before cheating. The little prick cheated before he even MET Yugi.

I actually like the concept of Capsule Monsters here, even if I’m still kinda confused about it. I hope it becomes a little clearer when we revisit the game later (at least in Season Zero. We might revisit it again in the manga, I’m not sure. The manga and anime will stray away from each other quite a bit in the future.) I’m not holding my breath, though because even the Wiki page for it says some concepts are just flatout poorly explained, like abilities.

I thought I remembered Capsule Monster toys being a thing when I was younger and turns out I was right. It was very shortlived, obviously, and didn’t get a lot of distribution in stores, but apparently they pushed it enough for me to remember it being in my local Walmart for probably a month before it faded in obscurity.

Also, it seems like this version of the game is played differently from both the manga and anime versions.

Not only that, but apparently there was a video game version of Capsule Monsters made for the Playstation in 1998 called Yu-Gi-Oh! Monster Capsule: Breed and Battle that was only released in Japan. Golly, a video game released in 1998 where you collect monsters in small balls and raise them to help them evolve into stronger monsters that you will use to battle other monsters. How did that not immediately take off?

To my surprise, there was another video game that came out in 2004 based on Capsule Monsters for the PS2 titled Yu-Gi-Oh! Capsule Monster Coliseum. I had followed the Yu-Gi-Oh video games pretty well when I was a kid, but I didn’t have much money to buy many of them, and I never once remembered seeing this game in stores. Maybe I did – the box art is just the slightest bit familiar – but, again, they didn’t seem to push this game very well. I remember them pushing the Dungeon Dice Monsters game, and I bought that, but the Capsule Monsters game is a blur at best.

Also, it’s weird that they spelled ‘coliseum’ like that, isn’t it? You don’t typically see it spelled that way. It’s usually spelled ‘Colosseum.’ Ya know….like, uh, hm what’s a good example?…..Uhm….Oh, how about Pokemon Colosseum….the game that was also released in 2004?

I’m just poking fun at the Pokemon connection, really, because Capsule Monsters does seem like a fun game and honestly isn’t a ripoff of Pokemon, given the board game aspect and chess-like strategies. I just think it doesn’t do a good job of explaining how different it is out the gate. You hear ‘capsule monsters’ and see that the blurb is just ‘collect, raise and battle monsters in small balls’ and you can’t help but think ‘Pokemon rip-off.’

And, to be completely fair….the concept name of Pokemon was literally Capsule Monsters, so they’re kinda asking for it.

I think if it had taken off more I would’ve definitely gotten into it. Maybe not so much because I was spending enough money on Yu-Gi-Oh cards without buying packs of small toys that probably cost even more. It just seems like, no matter how much they tried, they couldn’t get this game off the ground. They really hit their stride with Yu-Gi-Oh/Duel Monsters, but I think you could still make something great with Capsule Monsters. It’s a shame, really. Seems like a missed opportunity. Maybe the timing wasn’t right or something.

Final Notes: This episode is only extremely lightly referenced in episode 11, and that’s because the Capsule Monsters game played there is basically a mirror of the one played here. Literally everything else is different, including there being a different opponent.


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Sailor Moon (DiC) Episode 11 (8 for the Dub) Usagi vs. Rei, Nightmare in Dreamland | Sub/Dub Comparison

Plot: Usagi, Rei, Ami and Luna are spending the day at a local amusement park to investigate a string of mysterious disappearances that they believe is linked to Jadeite and Queen Beryl. However, Rei and Usagi’s constant bickering is holding back progress on the mission. When Ami gets trapped in a youma’s spell, Rei and Usagi need to….kinda sorta work together to save her and the other people who have gone missing.

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Title Change: The title of the episode is actually accurately translated, but they omit a part. It’s actually Usagi vs. Rei, Nightmare in Dreamland whereas the dub just has Nightmare in Dreamland.

A short bit of the opening scene where we see the gate to the shrine and see Usagi, Ami and Rei talking with Luna is edited out.

The book that Usagi likes is actually a Sailor V manga. In the dub, she says it’s a book called “Sailor V Goes to Hollywood.”

Ami wasn’t talking to Luna about Usagi and Rei fighting in the original. She was too enthralled in Rei’s encyclopedia.

The girls reacting to Luna’s outburst is edited out.

Originally, Luna tells the girls that they need to focus on finding the princess. Usagi then asks how they’re supposed to find the princess, and someone says something like there must be a big sign on them that labels them as the princess. Luna hesitates, and Rei says, if there’s not a big sign, then it’s impossible to find her…..Right, that makes sense. No one ever found anyone without a giant sign on their bodies labeling themselves as such. In the dub, Raye and Serena keep fighting because the moral of this story has something to do with getting along.

Ami suggests some investigative work to help them along with their Sailor duties and shows them a paper with a story on an amusement park called Dreamland where many people have disappeared. Luna thinks it’s a great idea, and they decide to go. In the dub, Amy suggests that they go to Dreamland as a sort of vacation because they’re going stir crazy with each other. The thing about the disappearances is brought up like an afterthought. Hey, we should go to this great new amusement park that happens to have a bunch of people go missing in it!

The newspaper with the story on the amusement is removed of most of its Japanese text in lieu of English scribbles. I guess that’s better?

Subbed:

Dubbed:

They translate that but they don’t translate/remove the plaque with the giant Japanese text outside of the park? Weird.

The security guard, who is obviously Jadeite, doesn’t deny that people have gone missing in the original. He just says that they haven’t gone missing at the park and the disappearances have nothing to do with the park. In the dub, he basically says the missing people in their entirety are rumors set forth by their competition. Yeah, tell that to their families.

Some of these line reads. “I’m gonna REPORT…you.” That didn’t even match the mouth flaps. Nice job, DiC.

Usagi tells Rei that insults are no way to treat her senpai…Usagi’s older than Rei? Or is she talking about the Dream Princess? Anyway, no American equivalent so she just says Raye is wrong.

The castle thing is called the Candy House. In the dub, it’s called the Sweets Dream Factory.

In the original, as Usagi picks up the rabbit and shows Rei, Rei brings up the fact that Usagi’s name means ‘rabbit’. Since Serena doesn’t mean ‘rabbit’, the dub couldn’t do the same thing, so they just had Raye berate her for not being serious again.

The panda driving the train (It’s an amusement park thing) says he’s getting the stop signal. In the dub, he says he has to stop for two turtles crossing the tracks.

The dub kinda makes Serena look like a hypocrite when she makes fun of Darien for being on the train when she is as well. In the original, she also makes fun of him and even laughs at him for riding the toy train, but it’s for riding it by himself not for doing it at all. I guess riding the toy train with another person who is way too old for that makes it better, Usagi?

Ami thinks that they might find some clues in the Candy House. In the dub, she thinks she can’t believe Serena’s missing out on all the free sweets.

Originally Usagi was crying at the door because she was worried about Ami. In the dub, she whines since the door to the Sweets Factory is locked and she wanted a cookie…..

Because of this line change, Raye tells Serena to think of Amy, to which she replies that Raye’s being mean. She’s being mean for pointing out that you’re being a crybaby over a cookie when your friend could be in danger? Right.

Also, she immediately follows this up by asking Raye if she has any feelings……..What? She’s (in the dub anyway) the one worried about Amy. You’re the one being an inconsiderate ass worried more about your sweet tooth than your friend. In the original, Rei tells Usagi to stop crying over everything, to which Usagi replies by asking if she even cares about Ami and calls her cold-hearted.

What the hell is up with way they make Raye’s English VA say “Mars power!” in this episode? She draws out the word Mars so long like she missed a cue or something. “Maa….aaa…..a……aaaaaa….rrrrSSSSSSSS POWER!”

Rei’s original chanting for her removal sutra is gone again. In fact “Entire series edit” this because I’m pretty sure we’ll never hear it.

Rei also does the same chanting she does when she’s just performing her regular priestess duties. In the dub, Raye says she calls upon the power of Mars and fireballs or something.

I have to say, this is definitely the creepiest monster-of-the-week they’ve had so far. I mean, look at this thing.

And before that, her headless body floated above the ground and spun slowly in mid air. Eheghyghgfhsd.

The shocked stillframe of Rei and Usagi with pure silence is priceless and I’m so glad they kept that the same way in the dub. It’s like they’re mirroring the audience going ‘What the hell!?’

The demon this week is named Durimu (Dream), but in the dub she introduces herself as “your dream dolly”….which….may or may not be creepier.

Usagi mentions something about maidens as she’s trying to do her motto. Rei stops her to ask what she means by maidens, and Usagi brushes her off. In the dub, Raye asks Serena if she wants her to just blast the demon to which Serena declines.

As Durimu starts another dream, Luna tells Usagi to not fall for her tricks again. Usagi says that she won’t, but Rei says she’s not so sure about that. In the dub, Luna tells Serena that she has to learn to use her tiara faster. Serena says that at least she acted brave and didn’t let Raye take over, but Raye replies that she should’ve.

I love how Rei’s all “Hey, don’t cry because Ami might be in danger or worse, we need to focus on the mission!” but the instant she sees Tuxedo Mask she completely loses focus and gushes over him.

A short scene of Rei and Usagi looking very confused about what just happened is edited out. I don’t know why.

Any reason why Tuxedo Mask’s mouth isn’t moving when he’s talking to Rei/Raye and Usagi/Serena?

Wow, nice pointless panty shot on Rei as she jumps down onto Durimu, original version. The jump is kept in, but they carefully edit out the panty shot. Not getting a screenshot for that one.

This episode brings us a pseudo new attack move made by Sailor Moon and Mars. Sailor Moon uses her Moon Tiara Action while Mars uses her Fire Soul to turn the tiara into a kind of fire/molten tiara. It’s really cool.

Serena: “Moon dusted!” First of all, awful pun. Second of all, that was a joint effort with Mars so that doesn’t entirely work. In the dub, Usagi just says “We did it!”

So no one in the park is going to question why a giant well-known castle in the amusement park suddenly vanished? Okay.

Usagi yells at Rei for supposedly having a bigger ice cream than she has, but Rei argues that Usagi picked out the one that she wanted herself and it’s ridiculous that she thinks hers is bigger. Usagi then tells Rei to trade, but she refuses and chases her around until she spills her ice cream. In the dub, Serena yells at Raye for slurping her ice cream, Raye says she should talk, calls her a meatball head and Serena chases her until she drops her ice cream.

Next episode, it’s the love boat! And demons and stuff.

Previous Episode


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My AniManga Clash-ish Thoughts on Angelic Layer

I haven’t watched Angelic Layer in quite a long time, but it still holds a place in my heart. It’s a rare shouJO gaming anime that had likable characters, a fun game to focus on and a decent story. It had its problems, but none of them were so severe that it badly damaged my perception of the series.

When I started reading the manga of Angelic Layer, I really thought I wouldn’t even wind up writing one of these posts because, frankly, there wasn’t much to talk about. The anime and manga, as far as I can remember anyway, were pretty well matched for several volumes. There wasn’t much in regards to changes to the story or characters, so what was there to say other than ‘Yeah, they’re pretty much the same.’?

But then I got to the ending.

And here I am.

Before I get to the ending, I would like to discuss some things regarding earlier parts of the anime and manga. As far as I remember, the anime had a more gradual buildup to Misaki eventually becoming the ‘Miracle Rookie.’ There was more in regards to her playing Angelic Layer with other people before she was flung into tournament play. In the manga, she has one match before she’s entered into the regional tournament.

Because of this, her ‘Miracle Rookie’ status irks me a bit more than it did in the anime. She is about as rookie as a rookie can be before she’s entering a major tournament – and she winds up winning that tournament. Then it’s immediately followed by the national tournament, which she doesn’t technically win, even though she does in the anime.

I say she doesn’t technically win the tournament in the manga because, even though she lost in the finals to Athena, the very last scene is the crowd cheering on her tournament win? (The announcer says ‘Here is the winner of our tournament!’ when she walks out.) She’s wearing a royal cape thing and crown at the end of the tournament – Hikaru (her Angel) even gets the same outfit. The epilogue has people calling her the Angelic Layer Champion, too. I don’t get it. Was Athena like a set champion to try and defeat once she won the main tournament? Like how there’s a league champion to defeat once you defeat the Elite Four? I dunno.

Either way, she somehow managed to make her way to the finals at least despite being almost completely new to the game when she started out in the tournament bracket as a whole.

She does practice a lot and studies frequently in between matches and tournaments, and it’s not like her record is flawless, she does lose a couple times, but so many of her matches are Hikaru struggling → Misaki struggling → Can’t give up! → Oh I figured out how to win against this highly-experienced veteran. → One-hit defeat. (And by that I mean the only hit that actually does damage. A lot of the time her hits will connect but do nothing.)

Many of her victories are one-hit wins, even though her Angel is built mostly for speed and is very light. There’s no reason why she should have such powerhouse hits that they either cause impressive ring-outs or deplete an Angel’s full health bar in one go. This is especially frustrating considering that Hikaru takes so much damage during these battles yet she always manages to keep hanging on, despite the fact that, again, she’s not built for defense – she’s built for speed.

Even when they make a huge multi-volume long deal out of Hikaru’s mystery weakness to build tension, it’s not that significant or interesting when revealed (Hikaru’s really light……We already knew that, and it’s been mentioned numerous times over the course of the series. She’s a small model built for speed. Of course her weight means she both can’t land moves as powerful as others, and she, by default, has a disadvantage against heavier models.) and it’s resolved rather quickly and easily.

Coincidentally, her weakness is revealed on a field that gives Hikaru the advantage. They were on a beach layer, so she had Hikaru grab her opponent and dive into the ocean. Since Hikaru is light, she could swim, I guess, even though it’s never established that Angels are buoyant, and her opponent, being heavy, just sank.

Being completely fair, I never got angry at this happening. I just kinda started rolling my eyes after a while and found myself not really immersed in the matches because I came to expect that Misaki would win, which, in itself, is a big problem because Misaki’s supposed to be the underdog. Her motivation is all about proving how small, seemingly weak-looking people can face their toughest challenges and come out on top. She does that, but she does it too easily. I greatly admire her passion for the game and her love of Angels, but she’s just too good too quickly to truly be relatable to anyone in the real world who would sympathize with her.

Moving onto the ending changes, we have two significant alterations to discuss – the first being Misaki’s relationship with her mother/ her mother as a whole, and the endgame romantic relationships.

Starting with Misaki and her mom, Shuko, the story still remains about 50% the same. In both the anime and manga, Misaki doesn’t even really remember her mom much. She left Misaki in the care of her grandparents when she was five years old. Turns out, her mother holds a high position in the company that developed Angelic Layer and is the Deus of Athena – the strongest Angel in the league and the Angel that Misaki saw in a commercial that got her interested in the game in the first place.

That’s where the similarities end. In the anime, the reason Shuko abandoned her daughter was because she had a neurological disease that confined her to a wheelchair. She decided to dedicate all of her spare time to researching a cure/treatment with Icchan, which incidentally lead to them developing Angelic Layer. She was so ashamed of her condition that she couldn’t bear to imagine what Misaki might think of her as she grew older, so she left her in the care of her grandparents. She had hoped that, one day, when she was better, she would reunite with her daughter. Until then, she’d cut off all communication with Misaki and keep tabs on her from the shadows.

After a bit of a dark tonal shift upon their reunion during the national tournament, Misaki and Shuko air out their feelings and work things out before their final match, which Misaki manages to win….even if it is pretty much one of the most asspull-ish wins I’ve ever seen in anime.

In the manga, the reason Shuko abandoned her daughter…….

….is almost insultingly dumb.

Something you should know about me before I go on – I have severe social anxiety disorder and general problems with anxiety. So believe me when I discuss the stupidity of Shuko’s manga backstory.

According to any info page on her character, Shuko has severe social anxiety disorder. However, it’s not actually social anxiety disorder. The manga never once uses the term. She can be out and about and live her life with little issue. She’s seen talking to Icchan and Ojirou numerous times, and, from how they talk about her, it seems she’s regularly socialized with them for years. She’s a famous Deus who participates in many tournaments, and numerous people seem to know her personally.

I’m not saying all of these factors means she absolutely doesn’t have some degree of social anxiety – you can live a fairly ‘normal’ life externally but be suffering significantly internally – but I am saying that, considering how she can cope with her anxiety enough to do all of these things, there’s no reason why she can’t cope with it enough to be with her child.

“So, why isn’t she?” you ask?

Shuko’s problem in particular is being around people she loves. The more she loves someone, the more anxious she gets, to the point where she has ‘panic attacks.’ She loved Misaki too much to be around her without freaking out all the time, so she just flatout abandoned her child at the age of five with, I guess, no intentions on ever returning.

That….is not….how anxiety works…..like even a little. Does the feeling of love make you flustered and nervous? Oh yeah, definitely. It makes everyone feel that way. In people with anxiety, it’s worse, of course, but 1) that’s usually just in regards to romantic love and new relationships and 2) if the anxiety really only comes when you’re in the presence of someone you love, the odds of the core issue being social anxiety disorder are very, very slim. That is either a symptom of some other disorder or it’s just not a thing.

One of the few things that helps alleviate anxiety is having loved ones around. They make you more comfortable, they help pick you up when you’re spiraling and they work with you to help you through the tough times. Why would a loved one make you so ridiculously anxious? Unless it’s a situation where you love them but they’re very abusive or something, but this isn’t the case here.

Lest we forget, she has a freakin’ child. She used to have a freakin’ husband. Which means she has dated, fallen in love, gotten married, had sex, gone through pregnancy, birthed a child and raised it for five years all without noping out of there because of her anxiety. They even briefly mention that her condition must’ve made life for her husband really difficult. Yet, for some reason, when Misaki turned five, she suddenly decided she couldn’t take it anymore.

You could argue that her husband dying (I think he died anyway) was the crux of her abandoning Misaki, but you’d think that one fewer loved one around would make it easier for her to deal with her love-based anxiety. Plus, her husband is never mentioned as a correlating issue here. He was only slightly mentioned at the beginning of the manga.

The most angering part of this whole plotline is that it’s all simply brushed away. After their match, Misaki chases after Shuko to reveal that she knew she was her mother since the match started. And, unlike in the anime where there’s a pretty dramatic exchange of words, their reunion in the manga is more or less comedic. Her anxiety is treated comically (Less ‘realistic panic attacks’ and more ‘cartoony turning red and chibi with little dot eyes.’) Misaki has absolutely no axe to grind with her mother, which is just ridiculous and practically makes a joke out of this whole situation – even more than it already was. In the absolute end, they simply suggest that Shuko try living with Misaki and Shoko (Shuko’s sister/Misaki’s aunt whom she’s been staying with after moving to Tokyo) and Shuko agrees.

In the epilogue, Shuko’s still very much flustered around Misaki, but they work through it by having Shoko basically tell Shuko to chill out and they live happily ever after…..Yup, that’s it. No reason whatsoever why Shuko couldn’t have been doing this from the very beginning. She’s literally just giving a single iota of effort to deal with it and it’s fine now.

Actually, let me be completely fair. Before the epilogue, Shoko mentions that playing Angelic Layer with Misaki more might help because Shuko is more comfortable while playing the game, but that’s it. Granted, there is a lot of value in having an activity that helps reduce the feelings of anxiety – art and games help me quite a bit – but that just feels so cheap and corny to act like Angelic Layer will cure her eventually and that its existence basically saved their relationship. And I mean that literally. Shoko tells Shuko that they should thank the person who made Angelic Layer when she brings up them playing more to get accustomed to each other.

Speaking of Shoko, does Shuko not love her sister enough to panic around her? She’s having a conversation with her normally, albeit with a blush on her face.

I never thought Angelic Layer would make me feel like I was too harsh on the mom from Aishiteruze Baby. At least in that situation it was a traumatic event and fear of becoming an abuser that caused her to leave. At least she tried to reach out to her daughter while she was gone. At least she attempted to better herself. At least she came back for Yuzuyu a year later. Shuko? She just bounced the instant things started getting difficult. She didn’t seek therapy, she didn’t ask for help from family, she didn’t send Misaki letters or try to communicate with her for over seven years, and she lived a fairly normal life after the fact, even becoming the top player of a game in the meantime.

She’s never held accountable for what she did. Misaki forgives her without a thought, Shoko welcomes her with open arms, and she gets to live a happy life with her child even after doing something so terrible to her for such a pitiful reason. Seven years of fully abandoning her daughter wiped away with nary a stain left behind.

Her story may not be perfect in the anime, but having a debilitating disease that leaves you in a wheelchair and being so distraught over your condition that you feel too ashamed to face your daughter anymore is much more understandable than ‘I can’t be your mom anymore, Misaki. Being around you makes me 😳.’ It’s still not enough to warrant never communicating with her for seven years, but it’s better.

They even work in the Angelic Layer aspect better in the anime by saying Shuko helped create it when she was trying to develop a treatment method (or means of helping her walk. I forget.) with Icchan. She naturally became a master at it because she was using it as a means of medical research. In the manga, she’s just an employee at the company that makes the game and, I guess, played it so much that she became a master at it. So much time spent pointlessly playing a game that could have been spent with your daughter and/or in therapy.

I know how much of a struggle it is for anyone with mental health problems to seek therapy, and it’s particularly a problem when you have social anxiety disorder (for obvious reasons. There’s a joke that’s like ‘There was a group therapy session for people with social anxiety, but no one showed up.’) but I’m convinced she doesn’t have social anxiety disorder. She has ‘flustered female anime character’ syndrome. There’s no reason whatsoever that Shuko hasn’t reunited with her daughter by now. There was barely a reason to abandon her in the first place, but there is definitely no reason why she’s left her daughter without so much as a note for over seven years.

In the anime, Shuko is held accountable for her actions, even if she is also forgiven by Misaki. In the manga, no one’s ever mad at her for what she did. Misaki never so much as makes a frown at her. Not only is that very frustrating, but it’s such a disappointing payoff for this whole running plot.

Onto more lighthearted fare, it’s time to talk about the romantic relationships.

In the anime, they tease Kotarou and Misaki getting together for a long while. If we’re gender-flipping the typical shounen formula, Kotarou would take the role of the token girl/love interest. He does know quite a bit about the game, but he doesn’t play it and mostly sits on the sidelines cheering on Misaki. Outside of the arena, he helps her by giving her advice and teaching her about fighting via his karate moves.

Tamayo is Kotarou’s childhood friend who is rather loud, physical and teasing. She loves hugging Misaki and play-flirting with her, and she loves tormenting Kotarou with wrestling moves. As the series goes on, it’s clear that Tamayo has a crush on Kotarou. However, he’s too enamored by Misaki to notice. Plus, by his own admission, he never saw Tamayo as a woman before. Once she makes her feelings clear, things between the two get pretty awkward, but he eventually warms up to the idea of dating her, which they, presumably, do at the end.

Not a romance for the ages or anything, but I did like this pairing. It was nice to skew away from the predictable route of having him end up with Misaki, even if their chemistry was good, and I thought this pseudo-love triangle worked very well. It feels a bit one-sided for my liking, I thought they would make a very good couple over time.

As for Misaki, she ended up with Ojirou, who is Icchan’s step-brother and a very highly-ranked Deus. He adores Angelic Layer and has a strong personal connection with the game, just like Misaki. He’s clearly enamored with her over the series, flirts with her numerous times, and, once they meet in the arena, it seems like the feeling is mutual. By the end of the series, it’s also implied that they start dating.

In the manga, neither of these pairings happen.

Instead, the pairing that you’d expect to happen, Misaki and Kotarou, wind up together (canonically, as it’s established in an epilogue that they start dating officially) and….for some reason, despite never sharing a single line of dialogue or having anything even remotely in common, Tamayo ends up dating Ojirou (again, canonically).

I have no qualms with Misaki and Kotarou ending up together. It’s predictable, sure, but their chemistry is fine and they set up the relationship well.

I am kinda bummed that Tamayo and Kotarou didn’t even get touched upon, but what can ya do?

As for Tamayo and Ojirou……just…HUH?! That pairing had no lead up whatsoever. I don’t even think they properly met. Where the hell did this come from? Their personalities could not be any more different, which wouldn’t be a big problem if we saw them interacting and understood how their dynamic worked, but nope. The epilogue just slaps us with ‘Lol ya, they’re dating now.’ I guess they did share in making Misaki flustered by guessing what her underwear looked like, but 1) that’s dumb as a basis for a relationship, and 2) They never did that together. Again, I don’t think they ever even met before. Ojirou clearly had a crush on Misaki in the manga as well. He never once acknowledges Tamayo.

What’s even more confusing is, somehow, they’ve been dating LONGER than Misaki and Kotarou. The epilogue takes place a year after the end of the national tournament, and Misaki explains in narration that Tamayo and Ojirou have been dating for a month while Misaki and Kotarou have been dating for a week.

Keep in mind, Misaki and Kotarou were practically unofficially dating when the tournaments were going on. How did this all happen? Misaki and Ojirou made much more sense, even if they didn’t have quite as much buildup as Misaki and Kotarou. It feels like a complete afterthought to put Tamayo and Ojirou together.

———————————-

At the end of the day, the anime beats the manga handily.

Reading the manga highlighted the problems with the series as a whole more than the anime did. There’s not really a lot to be gained from either watching or reading this outside of ‘believe in yourself’ and ‘being small/short doesn’t mean you can’t be strong.’ The Miracle Rookie stuff also gets very repetitive, as does everyone constantly focusing on and praising Misaki.

Gaming anime typically don’t have to have deep storylines or messages, but that’s usually because the fun action of the game makes up for that, and fun action in gaming is so difficult to capture in manga panels, especially when the art isn’t that impressive. There were numerous instances where I honestly couldn’t figure out what the hell was going on. I still have no clue how Misaki won her second to last match of the nationals. She was struggling, she couldn’t figure out how to win, everyone was worried she’d lose and then, fwoop, she won somehow.

I still really like the concept of Angelic Layer, but, quite frankly, reading the manga just made me yearn to watch the anime again just so I could see the concept done better. Not only do action/sports/gaming anime already have a leg up because they can show action in a more engaging manner, but the anime simply did a better job telling this story. The anime felt like it had more freedom above all else. There was better pacing in regards to Misaki’s development as a Deus, and everything involving Misaki’s mom made much more sense and was far more emotionally impacting that what the manga came out with. The romantic stuff I can give or take, but in my opinion they even did much better in that regard.

If Angelic Layer’s plot interests you, I fully recommend the anime. I had a lot of fun with it back when I first watched it, and I think anyone with an interest in gaming anime will have fun with it too. I still wish we had gotten a spin-off or sequel or something, and I’m forever sad Angelic Layer as a game doesn’t exist….

I can also recommend the manga, but not as enthusiastically. If nothing else, it’s a relaxing little gaming title that never has the ol’ cliché of ‘The fate of the world rests on my ability to play a children’s game!’. It’s nothing deep or introspective, you won’t tear up or yell at your screen, but if the premise sounds at all interesting it will likely entertain you for a while.


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Space-Time Detective Genshi-Kun/Flint the Time Detective Episode 12: What is Ammon? | Sub/Dub Comparison

Plot: Genshi is set off to find the Space-Time Monster, Ammon, in 15th century Transylvania where she is currently hanging out with ‘Dracula’ himself – Vlad the Impaler.

———————————

Title Change: What is Ammon? Is changed to Bindi.

The first shot of the original is the computer screen showing Ammon. In the dub, they insert two establishing shots of the bureau before showing that screen.

Name plate removed:

Subbed:

Dubbed:

The dub adds wing flapping noises when showing Pterry and Getalong even though they’re just floating there without flapping their wings.

The dub also adds the same shot of them getting on Ridon and heading down to the basement as usual, but they go even further by adding Jillian chastising Professor Goodman for hitting on her before.

Between when Genshi inserts the card and when they depart, the dub adds in the professor telling the kids to wait a second through the computer, but they won’t wait.

The dub inserts another shot (presumably from later) where we see an overhead view of the town and the kids flying over it before we cut to Sora and Genshi talking.

Genshi initially thinks Dracula is a food, which is why he rushes down to see it. In the dub, Flint seems to know what Dracula is, so he, for some reason, rushes down to see him.

Instead of zooming OUT on the castle, the dub zooms IN. *shrug*

Sora starts telling Genshi they should look for Ammon somewhere else. In the dub, Sarah says they’ll be safe as long as Flint is with them.

So, you know how I was confused as to how they’d go about this episode? Because either 1) They’d be meeting the fictional character, Dracula, in history somehow or 2) They’d start palling around with Vlad the Frickin’ Impaler – the real-life mass murderer on whom Dracula was based?

…..It’s 2.

And HOO. BOY. Do we have much to discuss here.

First of all, Vlad over here is depressed because people keep calling him Dracula and are afraid of him. However, Vlad pretty much gave himself that name in real life. He signed his name as Dragulya or Drakulya after his father, Vlad Dracul (Vlad the Dragon) – a name he received after joining the Order of the Dragon, which was a chivalric order in Europe at the time. Draculea or Dracula was Romanian for ‘son of dracul.’ While ‘dracul’ originally meant ‘dragon’ its meaning changed to ‘the devil’ in the more modern vernacular. In turn, the son of the dragon became the son of the devil.

Second of all, Vlad is also specifically calling himself Vlad Tepes here as if it’s his actual name, which it’s not. It’s literally just Vlad III (of Wallachia). He was given the name Vlad Tepes because ‘tepes’ in Romanian translates to ‘impaler.’ This title was bestowed upon him, posthumously, mind you, because the dude loved him some impaling.

Third, in the dub, Vlad is saying Dracula is a family name, which it’s not, technically, (Vlad II’s descendants were all referred to as Draculesti) and means something different now – something warped from what they originally stood for.

Hm….Hmph. The ‘family’ name of Dracul, inherited from Vlad II was only ‘warped’ because of Vlad III’s cruelty and the slightly embellished stories in the newspapers, word of mouth and, of course, Bram Stoker’s Dracula. Whether or not Vlad II had a good reputation is up in the air. I feel like it’s a gray area situation.

From all I’ve read, he had his fair share of blood on his hands and made some questionable military decisions, but he seemed to have been a pretty fair and caring ruler overall and was nothing anywhere close to the cruel person Vlad III was. His worst crime is implicated as handing over his sons, Vlad III and Radu, to the Ottoman empire, but he was forced into that arrangement (they were kidnapped and being held hostage to try and keep Vlad II under their thumb) and Vlad II tried to ensure that his sons were kept safe and eventually returned to him. He appeared to have died believing that, somewhere down the line, his sons were murdered by the Ottoman empire.

Fourth, this whole setup is kinda screwed from the getout because Vlad III never owned any property or lived in Transylvania. It’s been recorded that Vlad III might have been born in Transylvania, but, even if he was, he never lived there. Even the place they call ‘Dracula’s castle’ – Bran Castle – is just a spooky castle in Transylvania that Vlad never once visited. His armies once passed through Bran the city when they were murdering Saxons and burning nearby suburbs to the ground in the area, but that’s about it.

It was rumored to be the closest existing castle bearing resemblance to the castle described in Dracula, but it’s really not even that. In the 1970s, the Romanian government just banked on the rumor that it was strongly connected to Dracula, so they drove up tourism by marketing it that way.

Moving on, Putera originally tells Tokio and Sora that Vlad was just a model for Dracula and that such a being is not real. In the dub, Pterry tells Sarah and Tony that, if Tony’s nice enough, Vlad might give him the grand tour of the castle – the one that involves showing him his coffin.

Also, somehow, Ammon can talk, which is very much unlike most other Space-Time monsters.

Speaking of which, Tokio asks how Ammon can talk, and Ammon doesn’t really have an answer for him. In the dub, since all Time Shifters can talk anyway, this is changed to Tony saying Flint won’t make a very good vampire unless they change the diet. Bindi then says to knock off the vampire talk around Vlad because he doesn’t care for it. While supernatural beings of a vampiric-like nature have existed for over a thousand years, ‘vampires’ shouldn’t be a thing in 15th century Transylvania since the word ‘vampire’ wouldn’t exist until the early 1700s.

Mite originally asks what powers TP Lady could be referring to. In the dub, he asks if it was worth missing bowling for a Time Shifter with no powers. Also, after TP Lady goes on about how Ammon could have eternal life or beauty, Mite points out that TP Lady always seems to want the Space-Time monsters with powers that specifically benefit her. In the dub, he asks if the next Time Shifter they’ll go after will have experience in hair dressing.

TP Lady originally jumps out of the ship to tell them that those are the basics in life that she needs. In the dub, she, for some reason, says ‘One more time! One. More. Time!’ before falling.

I am currently watching Vlad the Impaler happily bounce on a bed with a time traveling caveman……Again, I truly, deeply love anime.

However, let me a downer nerd for a second……a downerd, if you will – mattresses didn’t start having springs until 1865. Unless there’s something else springy in that mattress, there’s no reason they should be bouncing like that, especially so easily. I have no clue why I decided to look that up, but here we are.

They censor the wolf getting hit in the face with Kyoichiro’s cane by cutting to a flash of white when the strike happens.

They do the same thing again when the other two wolves get hit, but it’s so quick and really nothing is shown during the split-second shot.

Ammon: “The count is really a nice person. Everyone just misunderstands him.”

Uh.

……Huh.

Vlad once impaled a donkey because it started braying after Vlad impaled its masters…..Who were monks.

A group of Ottomans once refused to remove their turbans in his presence due to religious reasons, so he ordered their turbans be nailed to their heads in honor of their religious devotion.

There’s a story of him having a woman killed because she made a shirt for her husband that was too short.

Here’s a woodcut depicting him eating his dinner while surrounded by dead/dying people impaled on pikes with one of his men chopping up corpses in front of him as he dines.

I mean, granted, yeah, it’s been suggested that the stories about his cruelty were exaggerated to some extent, but, still, the guy didn’t have some sort of fake image as a monster smeared on him. He earned it. He left tens of thousands of bodies in his wake, usually leaving them alive while impaled on stakes and allowing them to die slowly for days wherever he left them. His most famous instance of cruelty and murder was leaving what was described as a ‘forest’ of impaled people on stakes – over 20,000 Ottoman POWs – as a means of intimidating an Ottoman army into retreating (and it worked.) His estimated final death toll is about 100,000.

He is hailed as a Romanian hero by some as he was an extremely effective military leader who held strong resistance against the Ottoman empire, protected Wallachia and had a very noble sense of law and order. But even people who hail him as a hero recognize that he was a cruel person who did horrific things. They simply justify it on the grounds that his cruelty was ‘necessary’ in such horrible times and his acts lead to some good. I actually found quite a few lengthy comments by people who were vehemently defending Vlad on those grounds. I’m not Romanian nor did I live in the 1400s or know the guy personally, but I just can’t see through that lens. Even if you can excuse or justify the acts themselves, if he actually did them in such a merciless manner and took pleasure in it, he’s simply a horrible person in my eyes.

No matter if you don’t accept the monstrous viewpoint of Vlad or even accept him as a hero, you have to agree that it’s SO weird that this show is choosing to paint him like this. The guy is depicted as such a gentle softspoken man that he’d probably be an understudy for The Count on Sesame Street.

They insert a shot of Sarah talking right before Merlock introduces himself.

Kyoichiro tells Sora that he hasn’t properly introduced himself to her yet. In the dub, he tells Sarah that he’s her servant.

In the original, Dyna and Mite say the missiles might not be flying right because Mite mentioned to the people who repaired their ship that they keep getting defeated so they probably skimped on the work. In the dub, Dyno says cuts to the defense budget caused the problem and Mite adds that if they had written to their congressman like he suggested this wouldn’t be happening.

Vlad originally tells the women to take the children and run while the men work to put out the fires. In the dub, he tells everyone to grab a bucket and head to the wells to put out the fire.

Also, yup, now Vlad the Impaler is a village-saving firefighter…..

They recycle a couple of shots from the chase after it restarts before Merlock hits the cliff.

They remove about half of the shots of the saw approaching Kyoichiro and Ammon. He was biding his time until the very last moment so he could get the best shot at defeating the robot and getting away. In the dub, he just suddenly attacks.

*lip smack*….Uhhh……why is the sawblade now flying around back and forth like it’s a boomerang that never falls? TP Lady’s not doing this.

Petra: *nearly got hit by the sawblade* “I hate when this happens!” I, too, hate when sawblades defy the laws of physics and basically become a flying sentient Beyblade from hell for absolutely no discernible reason.

Putera: “Vlad was attacked by many, but the townspeople loved him. Just as history should be.” This is half-right, to some degree. As I said, some Romanian people hailed him more as a hero, and they still do. If nothing else, he’s viewed as a good military leader who defended Wallachia no matter what.

However, I am totally still calling foul on this narrative like he was given a bad rep unjustifiably. I get that this kids’ show can’t depict or even discuss the horrible acts of Vlad the Impaler, but acting like he was this goshdarn swell guy who had the heart of a lion but everyone unfairly treated like a monster for absolutely no given reason is taking it way too far.

It’s a hop, skip and jump away from telling the tale of a down-on-his-luck artist who had the best of intentions but everyone just started being mean to him for no reason and his legacy was forever marred because of rumors. Genshi and the others really have to help innocent little Adolf.

I joke, but Shin Devilman pretty much did that.

And I definitely won’t agree with the statement “Just as history should be.” It’s not as history should be because you’re omitting, like…..ALL OF THE HISTORY. The dub parrots this last line exactly and it really irks me. At least Saban changes the first line to saying he was part of a noble family that cared for his country instead of making this defenseless victim narrative.

Dub Villager: “We listened to too many bad stories.” Again, what were these stories? Who was telling them? What were they even about?

Tony: “I guess the vampire was just an urban myth of the count’s era.” No. He was a mere part of the basis of the most famous vampire in history, Bram Stoker’s Dracula, which wouldn’t be created for another 400 years. Not only was Vlad’s cruelty and impaling shtick inspiration for him, but there was also the popular rumor that Vlad liked to drink the blood of his enemies. It should be noted, however, that the strength of Vlad III’s connection to the fictional Dracula are said to be overstated. Stoker got the name Dracula from him and drew inspiration from the stories of cruelty surrounding him, but the majority of the character was pieced together from years of research on vampire legends as well as essays, books and articles on the subject.

They also found clippings indicating that Stoker was researching Mercy Brown at the time he was writing Dracula. Mercy Brown was the epicenter of the Mercy Brown Vampire Incident, which was part of a growing ‘vampire panic’ in New England at the time. Many people were dying of tuberculosis during that period, and being the superstitious and largely uneducated bunch people were back then, they started believing those who had died from it were becoming ‘vampires’ since the disease would also spread to their family members and seemingly suck the life force from them while the corpses of some of those who had died were sometimes left without much decomposition and with blood in their vital organs.

One such famous incident of this very occurrence was Mercy Brown, who had died of tuberculosis after her mother, Mary Eliza, and sister, Mary Olive, had died from it. When the three were exhumed for analysis, Mary Eliza and Mary Olive showed a normal rate of decomp, but Mercy didn’t. Mercy was accused of being a ‘vampire’ (though they probably didn’t directly use that term) who was sucking the life from her surviving brother, Edwin, who also had TB. They burned her heart and liver, put the ashes into a ‘tonic’ for Edwin to drink in order to cure him, desecrated Mercy’s body and reburied her, believing they saved poor Edwin….He died two months later.

Also, it was later revealed that Mercy’s body was kept in ‘freezer-like’ conditions in a crypt for the two months following her death, something that was not done with Mary Eliza and Mary Olive, which would explain why they were so decomposed and Mercy was not. This incident was seemingly one of the last of the vampire panic, though it should be noted that Mercy’s case took place in 1892 and the first recorded example of this type of thing happening was in 1793….Yup. Nearly 100 years exactly of people thinking ‘vampires’ were the culprits behind the TB outbreak in 19th century New England. Gotta be thankful for modern medicine, education and science at times like these. Granted, it’s not like it was a massively popular thing to do – according to New England Today, there were only seven documented cases of this happening – but still.

The Mercy Brown incident was never strongly associated with Stoker’s writings, but it’s very interesting nonetheless.

….Also, supposedly Stoker had a nightmare brought on by eating too much crab meat about a vampire king rising from the grave. Now I can’t stop imagining a crab vampire…..

Vampiric beings in general, as I stated earlier, had been around for much longer than Vlad’s time, and the myth has remained in a multitude of ways to this very day, so boiling it down to just being an urban legend of Vlad’s era and location and that blew up in correlation to the rumors surrounding him is just wrong.

And, really, if you think about the timeline of the show for even a second, you have to wonder….how did the fictional Dracula even become a thing off of Vlad? Was it purely the outlandish seeming rumors surrounding him for whatever reason? Does this mean they changed the timeline and now Dracula doesn’t exist because Vlad’s reputation was saved?

Toki-G brings up how odd it is that Ammon can speak again. Since this isn’t in the dub, Old Timer just talks about Merlock and Bindi traveling together now.

The final scene with Toki-G is basically kept the same, but they add in some recycled footage to extend it.

——————————————-

……What a weird-ass episode.

Normally, really weird episodes would be welcome because they’re just insane and fun, but this is weird in a confusing and bland way…..What do I even do with this?

It’s an episode acting as if Vlad the Impaler was an innocent nice dude who never did anything bad or wrong and was treated badly just cuz. It’s uncomfortably washing away literally everything even slightly bad that he ever did. I know they did the same thing for Christopher Columbus, but muffled history and years of washed schoolbooks were basically to blame for that depiction. What was behind this? Why even select someone like him to focus on in a kids’ show?

This episode also showcases a Space-Time Monster that never displays her powers, doesn’t transform and never fights. In the dub, she’s even more boring because there’s no mystery about why she can talk since all Time Shifters can talk in the dub. Not to mention the fact that she’s clingy and jealous, which are not personality traits that appeal to me at all. And now she’s going to be Kyoichiro’s companion. I hope she’s over the jealous bit now and will be more likable in the future.

Our big battle of the episode was against TP Lady’s robot cat, which has been defeated numerous times, and, in the end, they just ran away because they were terrified once Genshi was de-fossilized.

We didn’t even get a new good transformation for one of the Space-Time monsters on the allied side. Eldora was called in but only to act as a means of de-fossilizing Genshi by reflecting the beam back.

We did learn more about Kyoichiro, and he definitely proved to be more than just a goofball puppy-dogging after Sora. He’s a pretty cool guy with some legitimate skills………….Why no one pointed out that he looks like a vampire, much more than Vlad (and basically is one) I’ll never know.

The one actually notable thing about this episode besides the aforementioned Dracula/Caveman bouncing on the bed thing is the weird flying sawblade with a mind of its own. Where did it even go once the tree pinned Kyoichiro? Is it going to slaughter the villagers? Violate land clearing laws? Audition for the new Saw movie?

I didn’t dislike this episode, but I also didn’t like it. Outside of the weird and uncomfortable light they put Vlad in, there’s not much to like or dislike about this episode because there’s simply not much in it. There’s not a real story. I don’t even feel anything for Ammon having to leave Vlad because they never didn’t put any adequate focus on their relationship. From the very start, it was just Ammon getting pissy that Vlad was making friends with Genshi. And unlike most other instances of a Space-Time monster leaving their friend, Vlad never has one final moment of fondly remembering Ammon or even saying goodbye. He just makes friends with the villagers and gets his mind wiped.

I will admit that I had a lot of fun researching everything in connection to this story. I always enjoy stories of creatures and monsters and how they intertwine with history, and Vlad the Impaler has always been a pretty fascinating person to me, even if he was a mass murderer. However, the more I researched, the more irked I got at the changes they made. Oh yeah, Vlad the Impaler totally rescued a little pink snail creature and let it sleep in his bed….right after he supposedly captured, tortured and mutilated rats and small birds and stuck their bodies on tiny sticks.

Next time, we’re seemingly getting a Christmas special. Cool. Don’t think they’re meeting the real Saint Nicolas, but cool….Wait, does that mean this was meant to be a Halloween episode? Hm.


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