Anime World Order Show # 33 – Listener Feedback with Dave Merrill, Fandom Hero

In our longest podcast to date, we were supposed to get caught up on responding to listener feedback with our special guest, the now-retired head of Anime Weekend Atlanta / Corn Pone Flicks member / Anime Hell founder / comicbook creator / Totally Lame Anime expert / co-creator / no longer a “Cap’n,” Dave Merrill. But we got too preoccupied with having him impart his wisdom to us so that our kung fu might become stronger. Oh, and we did this interview on his birthday.

Introduction (0:00 – 1:15)
Shortest introduction ever! Or perhaps it’s the longest, considering what this episode is!

Let’s News! (1:15 – 24:02)
Fine, so we’re weeks late in getting to this. Bandai issued a press release warning everyone that if they fansub Ghost in the Shell: Solid State Society, they’d be prepared to dispatch lawyers in order to defend their intellectual property. While they’re perfectly right to do so from a legal perspective, we weigh in on the significance of such an action and whether or not what they’re trying to do is actually harmful to them in the long run. Comparisons to the MPAA and RIAA result, which leads to us talking about the effectiveness of their anti-piracy efforts and what could be done. Nikkei BP did an article on the state of Japan’s animation industry, which is to say “not that great.” Finally, Bandai follows up their Liver Blow that was the fansub warning with this Gazelle Punch: they’re not going to allow exchanges of the old Zeta Gundam DVDs from the box set (the ones with awful subtitles) for the newer Zeta Gundam DVDs included in the individual sets (which have fixed subtitles). Daryl bought that set, and he is less than thrilled over this development.

Promo: Rangercast (24:02 – 24:47)
The sentai panel at Otakon was probably one of the best ones there, and this podcast is run by the guy who ran that panel. If it’s true about TV-Nihon wanting this guy gone because he DARED to suggest that Mighty Morphin Power Rangers is sentai, then tokusatsu fandom is in even worse shape than we would have imagined.

Then we talked to Dave for the rest of the show. Additional show notes to come, but for now I’ll throw in the promo times.

Promo: R5 Central (1:05:12 – 1:06:16)
Speaking of tokusatsu, Mike made us a custom promo based upon the fact that Daryl lost his mind hearing that robot girl “Ai” voice being used for extended periods of time during his three-part Anime Central report. The observation that Gerald’s voice sounds as though Carl Macek is directing his words is entirely his own, though it is an idea not without merit. Man. One of these days we should get back to making political attack ads against the other podcasts.

Promo: GeekNights (1:39:59 – 1:41:05)
We have been informed that the promo we chose to play is actually the promo they made which was intentionally bad and meant to prevent people from wanting to listen. We have one of those too, actually. It is also our only promo. Anyway, check out Rym and Scott’s show. They’re a dynamic [100% heterosexual] duo for the new millennium.

Promo: Anime Pulse (2:01:03 – 2:01:33)
Do you know how frightening it is to have to write that timecode? DO YOU?! Old Man Chigo is the aspect of the Anime Pulse promos that we here at the Anime World Order relate to best. Even though they’re older than we are.

Closing (2:15:12 – 2:23:02)
Next time, we’re going to do a normal show for once! Remember those? The ones WITHOUT con reports or guests, where we talked about anime and stuff? Gerald’s reviewing the uncut version of Street Fighter II: The Animated Movie, Clarissa’s tackling that mad outlaw Captain Harlock as she tells us all about Arcadia of My Youth, and Daryl steps up to his role as a Certified Anime Authority by reviewing the much-requested Haibane Renmei. Also, Gerald makes an outlandish bet which he didn’t realize was stacked horrendously against him until it was too late. Fortunately it will NEVER come to pass. Never ever.

Anime World Order Show # 32 – Otakon 2006 Report with Zac "Answerman" Bertschy

Our special guest this week is Zac “Answerman” Bertschy from Anime News Network! We spend the episode giving our con report of Otakon 2006. Clarissa is woefully absent from this recording, but she’ll be back next time. If you’re lucky.

Introduction (0:00 – 3:45)
I guess Jeff Nimoy sounds like Wolfwood as his regular speaking voice. Daryl quickly introduces this episode since he thought there was a pre-recorded intro for this episode but there wasn’t. He actually had acute bronchitis at the time this segment was recorded, so that’s why his voice sounds kind of off. Thanks to your generous support, we have successfully met our donations goal, so we’re getting some brand new audio equipment! For not other reason aside from because Mur Lafferty and Rob Walch told us to, we’ve ordered one Alesis Multimix8 USB mixer and two M-Audio MobilePre USB preamps. We’ll order the third preamp after JACON matches the up to $250 that they so generously offered to do, but it’s not like we’re going to be battering on their door saying “hey, where’s our free money?!” especially when you consider that we don’t actually KNOW how to use any of the equipment yet! Alternatively, we could get another $40 in donations and that’d cover the cost of the final preamp right now, but you guys have already done way more than enough, WAY faster than any of us would have imagined.

The Otakon 2006 report constitutes the rest of the show. Here’s time markers denoting when we start to talk about certain subjects. Does Zac’s voice sounds similar to Alan Chaess to anyone else?

4:45 – What Gerald and Zac expect out of Otakon each year, which ultimately kicks off an East Coast vs West Coast anime fandom feud

8:05 – Getting to the convention and the hassles involved therein…for just Daryl: he referenced The Way of the Gun casually, a movie nobody else likes but him

12:00 – The hell on Earth that is badge pickup and why Baltimore totally sucks: Daryl references the Kentucky Fried Movie once more as well as The Twilight Zone

16:02 – Gerald talks about going to dinner with other podcasters Thursday night, an event Daryl mostly missed because he was one step away from reliving Judgment Night, but Daryl was there just long enough to make most everyone else there despise him, resulting in this rather severe joke. Several people have tried similar initiatives over the years, and all it does is remind Daryl of how depressing it is that even Mike Jittlov is more lovable than he. Worry not, he follows the credo that Toki spoke unto almighty Kenshiro: “turn your sorrow into anger, and move on…”

17:45 – Press access, how unnecessarily difficult it is to obtain at Otakon, and how Otakon’s the only anime con where we still had to pay to get in even as press since let’s face it, we’re not really press that MATTERS…not quite yet, anyway!

23:40 – Badge selection, why it sucked, and why Daryl and Gerald are out of touch with reality

Promo: The Greatest Movie EVER! Podcast (27:20 – 28:07)
Not only did Paul donate the largest single amount to us out of everyone who sent in donations (Daryl’s good friend Jason donated just as much, and between the two of them that pretty much covered most everything), he has a podcast where he has VOWED to talk about Highlander 2…WITH HIS MOM. After having already reviewed American Ninja with his mom as well as Godzilla vs the Smog Monster, the next logical step is for the two of them to review Zardoz together.

28:08 – Signs at conventions and the thankful lack thereof at Otakon

30:58 – The con guide, con mini-guide/map/schedule, and how useful/accurate these actually were

37:00 – Staffers at Otakon, the recent trend of anime cons having trouble getting their volunteers/staffers to actually SHOW UP for their shifts, and our dealer’s room experience

46:43 – Panel stuff: the toy collecting panel that was contradictory in its message, the Gainax/Ghibli/Studio 4C panels that we were hoping would have been more, and the awesome sentai panel as run by the guy who hosts the Rangercast podcast. We’ve been told that the people from TV-Nihon have declared this guy anathema because he had the BRAZEN NERVE to show Mighty Morphin Power Rangers at a sentai panel, and according to them “POWER RANGERS ISN’T SENTAI, RAAAAGH!” as if to suggest that they must have all gotten into that terrifying fandom by watching Spectreman on TV right as it came out or something. As a result, they plan to do all they can to ensure he doesn’t get the sentai panel next year. If this is indeed true, then that is absolute, total crap. Also, the reason so many people think Gerald has a weird accent is because he pronounces “schedule” as “shed-ule” unless he deliberately thinks not to.

53:00 – Cosplay stuff at Otakon and how most of it wasn’t anime-related

Promo: Fast Karate for the Gentleman (54:05 – 55:03)
Now that Daryl has admitted that he steals his jokes from this podcast, more people are listening to it and are able to realize that he was telling the truth for once. It is only fitting that this promo be played right after one more such joke was stolen.

57:03 – The Older Otaku panel that was run by people about our age…hey, wait a second!

1:00:18 – The Madhouse panel and the Mecha Anime Trivia panel which Gerald won – find out how Gerald hates the concept of giving things away that he doesn’t like or need to begin with, Zac reiterates his love for Anime Expo, and Daryl uses HIGHLY OFFENSIVE anti-Semitic remarks and Mel Gibson’s recent antics for comedy, thus earning this podcast the wrath of anti-defamation groups everywhere!

1:03:35 – I Can’t Believe You Haven’t Seen This! panel, Your Favorite Anime Sucks, and how Otakon had pretty darn good video room scheduling

1:06:20 – Zac tells us about what REAL press do at anime conventions (sobriety optional)

1:07:43 – The state of industry panels at anime conventions

1:09:58 – Panels that Otakon didn’t expect quite so many people to attend: the Kingdom Hearts panel, the 4Chan panel which Gerald and Zac didn’t like, and the Oldschool Anime panel which nobody liked

1:15:56 – Zac offers up an idea that is GUARANTEED to make someone FILTHY RICH if they actually implement it

1:18:00 – The podcasting panel as hosted by GeekNights and the Anime News Network panel which Zac was on; Zac plugs some of ANN’s future (probably current by now) contests and promotions

1:27:30 – What appears to be the official Otakon response to the various con gripes, and our final thoughts

Closing (1:36:12 – 1:37:55)
The hissing that Daryl was talking about probably disappears once he sets the sampling rate to 22050. Next week, Clarissa will be back as we answer listener emails with Dave Merrill, former Anime Weekend Atlanta con chair and Anime Hell grand poobah, as featured in the documentary Otaku Unite! which is now available on DVD. Dave is officially Smarter Than Us and is someone that Daryl has always aspired to be like, but comes up short time and time again.