Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Sub Thoughts - Dragon Ball: Episode 5: Yamucha, the Strong Yet Cruel Desert Bandit

Episode Data
Original Japanese Airdate: March 26, 1986
Major Cast: Son Goku (Masako Nozawa), Bulma (Hiromi Tsuru), Yamucha (Toru Furuya), Oolong (Naoki Tatsuta), Puar (Naoko Watanabe), Narrator (Joji Yanami)
Synopsis: Goku and the others aim for Mt. Frypan. Because Bulma dropped her capsules into a river, they end up having to cross a desert on foot! Completely exhausted, Bulma rests there. At this point, the desert bandit Yamucha appears, and tries to seize Oolong’s capsules. Goku battles Yamucha, but he has no power on account of his empty stomach. At the critical moment, Bulma wakes up and Yamucha, who can’t bear to be around women, runs away with a few sharp parting remarks.


As of this episode, where Oolong is more his whiny and sneaky self instead of trying to be an actual threat (and failing), I'm loving Tatsuta's work much more.

I've never really noticed, but the somewhat stylized animation for when Oolong is thinking about Gyu-Mao, it looks like an entirely different company other than Toei handled it. In looks downright Gainax-y to me, though I'm not really good with noticing or comparing these things. Is there any notable moments of Toei farming out scenes to other studios though?

Major LOL at Goku's mishearing/misunderstanding on the boat being out of gas, or as he heard it, butt and **** 'How can we be out of ass? What kind of butt is that?'

I never knew what Bulma said to give Oolong diarhea in the original until now either. I wonder why they had to change 'Pee Pee!' into 'Piggy Piggy!'? Surely the kiddie name for taking a whiz could have flown on Toonami, give me a break.

Already to the halfway point, and they're only just now getting to the desert, I'd forgotten that despite the title, it takes a while to actually get to Yamucha.

At last though, here they are, and all of five lines in - I like Naoko Watanabe for Puar way better than any English Puar we've gotten. It's high-pitched to be sure, which is what I'd expect for the character, but all the dub voices I've heard for this cat have been unrealistically and unbearably such.

As for Yamucha, I've never had a problem with Sabat's 'voice' for the character. My only problem with his Yamcha has been some of the lines he was given, and the delivery with which those lines had to be given. The 'surfer dude' if you will. When he's able to do it more normally though, as he did for the entirety of DB unlike in Z, I like his Yamcha just fine. Actually, so far I much prefer his Yamcha. I'll have to re-evaluate my feelings as I get further along with the character obviously, but as of now Tohru Furuya's Yamucha voice isn't doing much for me. It's not bad by any means, but it's not really capturing my attention either. It's just kind of...well, it's 'there'.

Then again, this is Yamucha we're talking about. That's his lot in life. Oh, and when you see me flip-flopping on names, like Yamcha and Yamucha, I'm trying to use the Japanese names for when I'm talking about the seiyuu performance, and the dub names when I'm saying something in regard to the dub actor. Is it too confusing? I can just stick with one if it is.

Though, I will say that actually, Goku and Yamucha's fight is the first really entertaining one in the series. He's the first guy that Goku doesn't pretty much take down in one hit when it's actually a real fight, so it really sucks that he was delegated to the background as quickly as he was.

You know, just what was Gohan so famous for? Did he win a Tenkaichi Budokai once? Just what is it he's done other than being strong that he's so famous for even Oolong to have heard of him?

Furuya has now won bonus points from me for the Bruce Lee yells while he used his Rogafufu-ken. If nothing else about his performance so far has captured my liking, that has at least.

I thought he'd get some more for me when he saw Bulma and went into his weakness phase, but I feel he far underperformed that part compared to Sabat, at least in this episode. Still, this was his first episode, he's got a lot more to grow on me and impress me in.

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