I finally sat down and watched the two episodes currently released for the series. Bleach is a series I’ve been avidly following through manga but have only seen 3 episodes of the subbed version. Series like this require a lot of patience and I just didn’t have it in me to commit to it. Until now that is…a weekly dose suits me just fine and knowing that it’s in English is a big plus (yeah…I’m one of THOSE people).
So anyway, like I said, I’ve already seen the subbed versions of the first three episodes. This allowed me to compare the changes made in the dubs for the first two eps with the originals. Surprisingly, there was very little changed. I guess the TV-14 rating that Adult Swim has given it helps to keep the series pretty much intact. I have heard that the Bionix version currently being shown on YTv is heavily edited and contains almost no blood, but haven’t been able to get a confirmation of that. Still, I must commend Viz and Cartoon Network for actually trying to stay true to an excellent original source instead of “sanitizing” it for America’s oh-so-innocent youth.
The dubbing voices seem to be biggest point of contention for purists. I’m happy to say that apart from Karin and Rukia’s voices (thus far) the rest are pretty spot-on. Ichigo is of course the most important one, and thankfully his voice actor is fairly close to the original and it’s nice to have a certain sense of continuity between the two versions of the show with such a similar voice. Even Rukia’s voice grew on my by the end of episode 2, and maybe Karin’s will too once we start to get more exposure from her. Orihime was the one I expected to annoy me the most, and it actually fit the character pretty well which was nice.
I loved that the opening and ending themes are kept in the original Japanese. I hate it when the themes are translated into English. It never works effectively and always annoys me to no end.
Overall, excellent dubbing begining. If Viz manages to maintain this standard I may never have to watch another subbed episode of Bleach (I have no problem with waiting the 2-3 years it’ll take to catch up to the Japanese version). And honestly…I can’t wait till the next episode.
Next, comic reviews for the week, and Grey’s Anatomy Season Premiere review and Six Degrees Series Premiere review.