Anime World Order Show # 200 – Let’s ACTUALLY Interview Helen McCarthy Already

It’s our 200th episode! To celebrate, we interview the UK’s Most Dangerous anime scholar garderner/poet, Helen McCarthy! The one we did back in 2008 was technically a “bonus” and not an episode, back when we were trying to distinguish between such things!

Introduction (0:00 – 43:38)
After the obligatory shilling our stuff (Daryl was finally back on the Greatest Movie EVER! podcast to talk about Ninja in the Dragon’s Den), we get to talking some more about virtual conventions. Anime Expo’s is this weekend, and we hope it’s handled better than Fanimecon’s which just might be the single biggest debacle of all the virtual conventions we were aware of…which truth be told, is shockingly few since it’s hard to get the word out. In-person conventions are starting to come back–the wisdom of this is a bit shaky–but expect to see us at Otakon albeit with much less on our dockets. Anime Weekend Atlanta is still something of a toss up. We also talk a bit about what we’ve been watching/reading, along with what we’re looking forward to for the new Summer 2021 anime season. You know who doesn’t believe in doing less stuff during the pandemic? Tim Eldred, that’s who. Because having the single best resource in the world on Space Battleship Yamato just wasn’t enough work, July 1st looks to be the next big update to his personal website Artvalt, so head on over there for his next big compendium as it pertains to Fist of the North Star. There’s renewed interest in that now that the first volume of Viz’s Signature Edition is out (and selling out, from the looks of things). The first of multiple articles from Tim is now up: the Fist of the North Star Series Profile.

Promo: Right Stuf Anime (43:38 – 46:30)
As if there weren’t enough recent major sales, the big birthday sales are going on over at Right Stuf and that means big discounts across the board along with Mega Deals that change daily along with weekly giveaways. As a PSA: if you bought Dear Brother on Blu-Ray, and you probably want to do that since it’ll go out of print in under a year’s time, open it up and double check to make sure your discs were not physically cracked in the packaging. Discotek used a standard width case along with a spindle which is very hard to remove the discs from, and while Daryl’s discs were fine there are multiple reports on social media from those who weren’t so fortunate. So if you need to get an exchange, this is something to find out now rather than once there are no more copies available.

Interview: Helen McCarthy (46:30 – 3:26:55)
We meant to get to this sooner. We’re just stricken by laziness. The same cannot be said for Helen McCarthy, which will become quite evident once you listen to this because we didn’t manage to cover everything in three hours! This was done through an international half duplex Skype connection, so there may be some occasional cutouts during cross-talk, but we mitigated this by mostly keeping quiet and listening AS YOU SHOULD TOO. But here are a few links you’ll probably want in addition to her blog which is already on the sidebar.:

Feel free to suggest/request additional links in the comments below, or bug us via email or through social media.

9 Replies to “Anime World Order Show # 200 – Let’s ACTUALLY Interview Helen McCarthy Already”

  1. Speaking as one of the panelists at this year’s Fanime, I’m of two minds on how they handled things. I will say that the platform they used (Whova) wasn’t terrible. The schedule was easy to find and adjust, and having the links to the Zoom panel rooms on the schedule was convenient. Also, admission was only $10, which I don’t think is outrageous but YMMV.

    That said, it was clearly a platform built to be used by businesses instead of anime cons, and I suspect the lack of same-day registration was due to Whova itself having tiny room limits or the site taking its sweet time with providing those who registered with the access links Ultimately, that ease of use wasn’t worth all the restrictions and the additional cost, and it sucks because I put a lot of work into recording my panels and wanted lots of people to see them. That said, at least it wasn’t as bad as the virtual AnimeNext, where a lot of panels were apparently VOD-only and required panel applicants to submit a completed video before their panel was/was not accepted.

    Honestly, it seems like the virtual cons who have handled things best are the ones that were virtual-only from the start. These official cons would do well to take some cues from the likes of Anime Lockdown or even FujoCon. Don’t get fancy with the platform, keep thing free if at all possible, make the links to the relevant streams (be they Twitch, Zoom, or Discord) well-organized and easy to find, put some actual effort into the panel line-up, and communicate things clearly on the site and social media.

    Oh who am I kidding? The moment they can host in-person cons again, all of the official ones will never again bother with streaming.

  2. Congrats on episode 200! I’m so happy to see my favorite podcast continue on!

    This episode hit at a funny time because I’ve been on a Moto Hagio kick having recently finished Heart of Thomas and being halfway through The Poe Clan which I picked up on a recent trip to Seattle direct from Fantagraphics (Fuck Amazon!) I’m suddenly *very* concerned about vol. 2 never getting published. I hope it’s only been delayed due to a slowdown in printing due to COVID as you also mentioned in the episode. Ugh, it would be tragic to not be able to complete a two volume collection.

    And what a treat to have Helen on the show. It’s always nice to hear about the early days of anime breaking through to the western world and where the fandom fit in at the time. Your show always charges up my nerd power meter and makes me want to try out new anime. Thanks to all of you for all the work you’ve poured into AWO over the years.

  3. Congrats on 200 eps! Great to hear Helen’s shout out to Yanaka and Taito-ku, one of the cooler parts of Tokyo.

    And yeah, Shin Godzilla works the best if you’ve actively seen the Japanese government fumble during an emergency, as we’ve been seeing for the past year and change with coronavirus.

    1. Um no, https://www.hsph.harvard.edu/news/hsph-in-the-news/lessons-from-japans-covid-19-response/
      Contrast that with pretty much ANY western nation. [This link is correct for one year ago, as it describes what Japan was doing in July of 2020 being exemplary for other countries to follow. However, wah’s comment is accurate for the situation right now in July of 2021; Japan’s maintained extremely low vaccination rate is the result of Shin Godzilla-esque governmental ineptitude regarding procurement and distribution combined with what I understand to be a general cultural aversion among the populace to voluntarily take the vaccine when offered. — Daryl]

  4. I’m a HUGE Godzilla fan.(I own every movie but that Tristar garbage and Shin, which was just super boring) I was reluctant to watch Godzilla: Singular Point, based on the monster designs, but if you guys think it’s good, I’ll take a look.

  5. Why yes, I download MP3s from this very site to listen to, how could you tell?

    Also, thinking of contacting Helen, to give her some feedback on all the she said. Perhaps someday I will.

  6. Congrats on your 200s and wonderful interview with Helen. Ive been listening to you guys for only 2 years so I have a big backlog to go through yet.

    Regarding the interview: Helen mentioned the British dubbing industry in the mid 90s as the biggest in the Western world until the US took over. I have serious doubts about the accuracy of that assessment: about the same time (or maybe a bit earlier) there was a big boom of anime being dubbed in Spanish (in Spain, for the Spanish market) and in Mexico (for Latin America). Most of the movies and OVAs available in the UK were also available in Spanish (professionally dubbed in Spain with a very thick Spanish accent) but there was also a huge number of TV shows being aired (literally aired on over-the-air TV channels). Those shows were dubbed in Spain for the European market and then again in Mexico with a neutral accent for Latin America (there is a huge industry over there that dubs everything that US produces for the consumption south of the border). The anime boom was so big that even in Chile, my home country, a company decided to dub anime (You’re under arrest). Way before anime got popular in the US, the Spanish-speaking world had already seen dubbed versions of Ranma, Sailor Moon, Dragonball, GS Mikami, Slayers, Saint Seiya, Captain Tsubasa and then Fushigi Yugi, CC Sakura… heck… even Akira was on TV several times! (Pretty sure that they didn’t pay the license for that, but it was dubbed in a professional studio regardless.)

    Unfortunately we don’t have scholars (not even fans) or publishers interested in documenting that history and second, by mid-2000s the TV stations lost interest in anime and now is again relegated mostly to kid oriented cable channels. So, I can’t tell you for sure if the Spanish (just counting Spain) dubbing industry was actually bigger than the UK one, but considering the amount of titles dubbed between 1992-2002 in Spanish I have my doubts that Helen is correct in her assessment… unless you don’t consider us part of the Western world… XD [Considering that the story started with Helen finding out about anime while in Spain, and that she mentioned having to check Spanish resources, I am pretty sure she did not forget about Spain when making that statement. –Daryl]

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