It’s time for a local (in terms of being about the state of anime here in the Philippines) post.
ABC5 is one of the few channels that air on free local television. It’s not the most popular channel in the Philippines (I’m guessing that that belongs to ABS-CBN right now judging from the budget they allot on their shows as compared to GMA), but it is quite pivotal in the dissemination or at least the rethinking of what is anime.
It’s the first time in local television that series like Code Geass, Noein, and Mai Hime are aired on primetime spots: in the bigger channels, or at least in the more popular ones, their primetime shows more often than not local drama series. Anime is barely given a mention, let alone aired.
It has recently changed with the barrage of decent to good anime (that do not cater only to kids) that ABC5 airs. While their dubbing remains to be wanting, the fact that they air anime during primetime slots and anime that do not only cater to children will at least initiate the thinking, even if only among few Filipinos, that anime isn’t merely for kids but for adults as well. I believe it’s a good start.
The dubs are, however, amusing, if anything. Shirley sounds like a man, and the voice actor of Lelouch doesn’t manage to portray Lelouch’s antics well. I’d argue that it’s the limits of the language, however, more than the dub itself: Tagalog is pretty much a language which attempts to waste as many words as possible in the statement of a simple idea. The very first episode was a reminder of Lelouch’s ideals, however: his principle that only those who are prepared to die can be the only ones that should kill appears here.
A friend of mine who watched the dub with me and who also was not quite acquainted with Code Geass remarked that CC was a very beautiful woman. I was reminded of the reason why I abhorred Lelouch dying so much: sooner or later, Lelouch will remain to be just another memory to her. I’m still hoping that something happened between them before he passed away, because otherwise it would be simply too tragic.