Friday, April 4, 2008

In My View: A Heartfelt Apology to Arthur Smith and the Crunchyroll premieres

Around the time I started blogging, Arthur Smith came out with his interview over on At the time, I lambasted him and while I still stand by what I said back then (and what I've said since), I have to say he's stood by his word.

He IS exploring other methods to distribute anime. He IS trying to combat fansubs in a way that is proactive rather than reactive. And I commend him for it. Because I didn't think this day would come.

So I just finished watching the premiere of The Tower of Druaga – the aegis of URUK – over on Crunchyroll and I implore everyone to go do the same. First of all because it's free. Second of all because it's free. And third of all, because it doesn't cost any money. What isn't good when it's free. I'd gladly sit through a screening of Spiral if I knew I didn't have to pay for it. Now the show itself is pretty funny, especially if you've played enough D&D and online roleplaying games to get the really high-strung dramatics that go in those situations.

Strangely enough though, I didn't see any advertising in the actual show, so I'm kind of curious where they're putting it. I also didn't see any advertising on the page either. But… for now, I'm willing to take those people over there at their word. A dubious proposition at best, but I'll put a lid on my inner skeptic.

In all fairness, the video quality is horrible. There are some scenes I couldn't actually figure out what was going on, especially when there was a lot of action and it was dark. The soundtrack sounded like it had gone through a digital masher, but you know what – it was free. I don't expect high quality video that I didn't pay for. And if you want the high quality stuff, then go over to BOST and get it there.

Not only was it free (have I mentioned that enough times yet), it didn't crash, which is more than I could say about AnimeNetwork's Online service, which I think has fallen out of the Otakusphere's memory. Now as much as I may think ADV is usually at the forefront on this side of the Pacific, I don't think they planned well enough for the immense amount of traffic they got. Hopefully, Crunchyroll did. Because at least until this one disappears out of the public consciousness, it will be the biggest thing since sliced bread.


Anonymous said...

Crunchyroll needs to remove its region restrictions, but I guess it's fine for those of you in the U.S. and a couple of other places.

Scott said...

Crunchyroll has a bad reputation that I have a problem shaking off. They unapologetically allow users to upload anime shows that are licensed in the US, and will only take it down if they get a DMCA request to do so. I remember seeing all the Miyazaki films and VIZ licenses on there when I checked it out a couple of weeks ago.

I'd recommend either going to YouTube or BOST TV. Even if they are going legit, it's going to take a while for crunchyroll to shake off that "biggest douchebags in the world" vibe to me.

Cameron Probert said...

@ anonymous - True. I understand why they did it, but I do think it sucks for the people who aren't in the US.

@ scott - Yeah. I was torn. I mean I knew the quality level was going to blow. And I would rather people go through BOST or YouTube, but on the otherhand, if crunchyroll is trying to go legit (which is probably why they allowed themselves to be interviewed by Zac Bertschy in the first place) and it's got easy access, then I'll support that too.

omo said...

... I think you should support Bost TV...

Because ultimately they're the guys who produced the translation. And they have a much higher quality streaming video on their site anyways.

FWIW it's not exactly hard to post videos on Crunchyroll if you can do it legitimately anyways.

Cameron Probert said...

@omo - Yeah you're right. Honestly, I've been thinking about doing all three.