What's wrong with subtitles?

Discussion in 'Movies and Television' started by Deceptijohn, Jun 20, 2011.

  1. Deceptijohn

    Deceptijohn Metallikato Master

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    I watch a lot of anime. I prefer to watch in Japanese with subtitles. If I watch a foreign film I like to see it in the original language with subtitles. I just find dubs in general to be emotionally lacking and often quite badly done and the Japanese language and mannerisms add something intangible to the experience of watching anime imo. I have seen plenty of posts by people saying they will not watch something unless it's been dubbed and I don't understand why someone would pass on something completely just because they have to read.

    So would all you sub haters enlighten me? Because unless you have some disability I don't get the problem with subs.
     
  2. Sso02V

    Sso02V Injector Has a Posse

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    I don't typically hate subtitles unless they're during an action scene, and I'd rather see what was happening on the screen than what's written at the bottom of it.
     
  3. TrueNomadSkies

    TrueNomadSkies Airachnid's ratservant

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    While I've watched movies & things with subtitles without issue, it's not "just" the fact that you've gotta read. It's also that you can't focus entirely where you want to, meaning that fast cut scenes can cause you to miss part of the experience. This matters more for certain animes than others, especially when you're just getting into something & haven't fully got mental pictures of the reoccurring scenery & characters.

    For example, I had no problem at all watching Love Hina or Escaflowne with subs when I did, and neither was Hero really. However, a lot of that had to do with the kind of animes/movies they were (more dialogue & story based than most), as well as how familiar I was with em. Applesead definitely wasn't as seamless, what with the fact that it's not only very visually geared & decently paced, but it was also brand new to me when I watched it.
     
  4. Dran0n

    Dran0n Junk male

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    I don't want to read a movie or a cartoon.
     
  5. TrueNomadSkies

    TrueNomadSkies Airachnid's ratservant

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    Also, I think part of it has to do with how the subs are physically displayed. For example, what font is used, what colour, what size, what part of the screen, how synced it is with the verbatim, and of course how they deal with secondary dialogue.

    If anything, I've grown to appreciate the art to all of these things, as they're very much part of the overall cinematography.
     
  6. Recall

    Recall Player Select

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    Epic fail.

    Why do people find it hard to multitask? You don't read subititles like their a book , you skim them and absorb the parts you need.

    My girlfriend is Polish and we watch a lot of movies with subtitles and I've actually grown very fond of having english subtitles on, due to picking up on things I may have missed. In anime, subitles are great also until they change the meaning of words. i.e. add swear words or act too lazy to translate the apporpiate word.

    Some of the best movies I've ever watched have been from other countries so subtitles makes it possible for me to enjoy them. How they can be considered a bad thing I'll never know.
     
  7. The Dark Seeker

    The Dark Seeker TFW2005 Supporter

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    I too hate watching dubbed anime/foreign films with a passion. In fact, I absolutely refuse to watch anything foreign that's dubbed. The first dubbed anime I watched was Robotech. I was a kid then and didn't know any better until I watched my first subtitled anime (Ranma 1/2 and one of the Gundam series). The emotional content, the inflection of the voices, everything was so much better in its original audio format. Granted, I learned how to speed read that way.

    What put the nail in the coffin for me wasn't some badly dubbed Jackie Chan movies, but rather, one of Jet Li's. It was Fist of Legend. I bought it at Walmart, and couldn't tell if it was subbed or dubbed. I found out when I got home that it was dubbed. And boy did it suck donkey testicles! I remember watching the original version years back. This dubbed version had not only changed the music soundtrack, but it added a stupid Star Wars like effect when the main character was knocked down. There was a "voice" talking to the main character saying some stupid inspirational crap that was never in the original audio format.

    Man that ruined the movie for me until I found the original movie on dvd that was subtitled and....with the original music score/soundtrack in the movie. That one movie alone made me swear off any craptastically dubbed crap released in the U.S. Almost every "dubbed" movie I've ever watched sucked hardcore when comparing it to the original. And that's not to say I don't give it a chance....I have....and every time I always regret it. But no more......I'd rather have my eyes and ears bleed from listening to a particular song about a certain day of the week.......
     
  8. Bumblethumper

    Bumblethumper old misery guts

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    What's wrong with subtitles? Low levels of literacy perhaps.

    My attitude is I will not watch a live-action film if it's been dubbed. You will loose the essence of the performance. Subtitles are far better.

    But for animation, dubbing can work pretty well. There isn't the same disconnect you get with live action from hearing one person's voice coming out of another person's body. It can also help not to be so absorbed in reading that I can't take in the visuals. But it has to be well done with good actors.
     
  9. QmTablit

    QmTablit Disguise: Check. Robot...

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    I can't stand dubbed anime. Flat out. Subtitled or I'm not watching.

    The only show that was ever as good dubbed as it was in it's original Japanese was Iron Chef.
     
  10. The Dark Seeker

    The Dark Seeker TFW2005 Supporter

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    ^ THIS

    Very few anime I've watched in my opinion has been able to pull it off. Robotech was one of them. Maybe its just me, but I feel sometimes there's cultural references that are lost when dubbing is done because some things said have to be "said" in a "certain way" for it to have it's full effect that the producers/directors wanted it to have.

    Then.....there's also the meaning of sentences/words/phrases that can be lost in translation (I see that a lot with Hong Kong flicks).
     
  11. hellrasinbrasin

    hellrasinbrasin Well-Known Member

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    I think that the reason western audiences take offence to Films or Tv Series that are Subtitled is that they have to use their brain to do 2 things at once the first paying attention to the visual story and the 2nd is the txt splashed across the bottom of the theater screen or Tv Screen
     
  12. Opticron Primal

    Opticron Primal Comin' up OOOs!

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    Yeah, I don't get the subtitle hate and this is coming from someone who didn't like subtitles himself.

    It's not tedious or extra work and it doesn't take away any attention from the action. People probably think they'll end up focusing on the bottom of the screen when in reality it's as easy as skimming it for a second. It's not hard.
     
  13. Brainchild

    Brainchild Dark Flame Master

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    I love subtitles. They don't get in the way at all for me, and they don't ruin any semblances of acting the way dubs tend to do.
     
  14. Ephland

    Ephland Let's Go Rangers

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    Subtitles or GTFO. I watch all TV with closed captioning on, it makes it easier.
     
  15. mx-01 archon

    mx-01 archon Well-Known Member

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    There are such things as good dubs. Not as common, but they're there.

    For instance, the popular sentiment is that the dub for Black Lagoon was so good, it caused the Japanese audio to stop existing. And of course, the most cited example of Cowboy Bebop, in which Shinichiro Watanabe, the show's director, favours the English dub. Then there are the instances like Samurai Pizza Cats, or most recently, Ghost Stories, where the dub actually makes the show worthwhile.


    I have no outright qualms with either. Although occasionally I'll have to skip back a bit every so often with subbed anime, due to overly wordy sequences, layered dialogues, or heavy wordplay, which only really works if I'm watching on my PC. Would probably piss me right the hell off if I had to fuss with rewind/fast-forward controls every time. I've heard bad dubs, and I've seen bad subtitle jobs.
     
  16. Trenner Dios

    Trenner Dios Humility > Huge Ego

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    I almost always prefer foreign language films to have subtitles. I can't imagine watching movies like "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon", "Pan's Labyrinth", "Let the Right One In", or "The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo" if they were dubbed. The only exception I can think of is the first Ong Bak movie, and that's because the girl's real voice murdered my ears with sonic knives of doom. Other Kung Fu movies I can watch either with subtitles or dubbing; I'm usually in those for the fight scenes so bad dubbing doesn't bother me much there.

    However, I recently noticed that I much prefer to watch dubbed anime than watch it with subtitles. I think it's because I'm in it much more for the visuals, and I can usually appreciate the story even if the voice acting is pretty bad. I guess that tiny bit of extra effort is too much for me, though I don't know if I can put my finger on exactly why I have trouble when it's anime versus a regular film. That's just my preference though, and I can completely understand why others would prefer to always watch a film or tv show in the original language.
     
  17. McBradders

    McBradders James Franco Club! Moderator

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    FLCL dub :bowdown: 
     
  18. jala12

    jala12 Fiery Adventurer

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    I usually watch foreign shows/movies with subtitles. Some dubs are really horrible, but some work out pretty well like the Ghost in the Shell series.
     
  19. Dolza_Khyron

    Dolza_Khyron Well-Known Member

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    to me it really depends on what i am watching, with anime, i tend to prefer to watch it the first time with a dub, and if i was to watch it a second time, i'd watch the japanese version.

    or if i am watching something on my computer i prefer subtitled too.

    how ever if i am watching something that is live action, i prefer subtitles, why? because dubs can be made to work for anime, but they never work for live action, never work for real people :lol 

    how ever lately, since funimation, and adv have been using the same voice actors every time for every part, it has discouraged me from watching anime dubbed.

    but i love the older anime dubs, i love rurouni kenshin's dub. especially season 2, but that's mainly do the fact that it has steven blum as a voice, one of my all time favorite actors.

    so that is a big thing to me too, voices, voice actors as well. if i like the voices of an anime in the dub, i will watch the dub. if i find that for example, the main characters voice is completely OFF, and doesn't fit at all, screw the dub i will watch the sub.

    now if it is edited that's a totally different thing. as long as it remains roughly the same as the japanese version it doesn't bother me, but with anime's that have been butchered like sailor moon, card captor sakura, and many more that toonami dubbed to play, aka edited, then i prefer the japanese versions of those, and yes, i watch both :lol 

    but with things like robotech, i am on the fence with, i hate the edits, but i love the voices, and prefer them to the new version of the macross dub, but mainly because adv, did the same damn thing it always does, hires the same actors for every role.

    it's not really that they are in there, it is more so that it just seems that with the exception of a select few, that they all, always just sound the same, like they're not even actors, they're just readers.

    while older dubs edited more, they also had much more livelier actors too. better trained at least.

    so with anime it really depends on what i am watching. but with movies, live action things, i prefer subtitles.
     
  20. Stryker055

    Stryker055 Josh Boyfriend

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    I prefer to hear and understand what is being said in the anime instead of reading it. It has nothing to do with not liking to read in general, as I read books and novels quite frequently, it's just my preference.

    However, if a dub is just that bad, I will watch it subbed. Live-action films and TV I would probably rather watch subtitled than dubbed.
     

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