Chris Beilby (cbeilby@hotmail.com)
Tue, 25 Jan 2000 16:17:05 GMT


> >As I mention in another post, it would appear that Bandai is submitting
>an
> >unedited version to Cartoon Channel, who does their own edit for content
> >(violence mainly).

>Does this mean Japanese TV is less sensitive about violence, even for kid's
>shows? I am a little confused here.
>
>Eddie

For animation, very much so, Eddie, especially with the American
preconception that animation is for kids. When Dragon Ball Z was brought
over, significant portions were edited out of the series to make it
supposedly suitable for american audiences. And if you look at Robotech
versus the original Macross, you'll see it there too. Another good example
was Space Cruiser Yamato. Some of the changes that were made to Yamato are
laughable now (Such as the Gamilon's 'robot tanks' or the Captain's 'Spring
Water' which was in reality, Sake.) However, the edits were made by the
American distributor because of the show being for children.

You can notice the trend in the evolution of american animation. The Warner
Brother's and MGM cartoons of the fourties and fifties, which were made as
much for adults as they were for kids, are significantly more violent than
Hannah-Barbara's offerings of the sixties and seventies. Likewise, with
these same Hannah-Barbara, you can see this between the Space Ghost and
Herculoid shorts of the Sixties, and the later shorts with the same
characters of the seventies and eighties, or with the original Johnny Quest,
and the Johnny Quest episodes made in the late eighties...

The unfortunate thing about this trend is that it is the result of well
meaning, but somewhat misguided parents, who think that kids should not be
exposed to violence. While in principal they are correct, the means used
are wrong. The kids see the cartoons which depict violence without
conseqauence, and can get the idea that you can do it without anyone getting
hurt (one of the worst offenders in this case was GI Joe, where a fighter
could get shot down, and the pilot always escape...)

Then there are the shows where there is so much that Americans deem as being
unacceptable to kids that they never make it over, even if it's a fan
favorite. For example, Sailor Moon S and onward, where the yuri romance
between Uranus and Neptune is the only thing keeping the episodes off of
American TV. Personally, I see noting wrong with having two openly lesbian
characters on a animated series (as long as nothing graphic is shown), but,
unfortunately, many people aren't as open minded as I am.

Basically, the general attitude in the United States seems to be 'Hide the
kid's heads in the sand until they're 18.' But this is very unhealthy. We
have to explain to them that these shows are only fiction, and that the
things they see can be very dangerous... We've becone complacent in
thinking that TV can be used as a babysitter, and forgotten some of the
parent's responsibility in this...

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