How do you watch anime: dubbed or subbed? | The Tylt

How do you watch anime: dubbed or subbed?

Those unfamiliar with the Japanese language can watch anime one of two ways. The first is with subtitles, which stays true to the original content. The other is with voice-overs in viewers' preferred language. However, both parties feel the opposing version lacks important aspects. Pro-subbers claim voice-overs lose the original version's key plot elements, while pro-dubbers argue voice-overs make for easier watching. Is dubbed or subbed the more effective way of watching anime? 

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There are those who can’t fathom why people would ever oppose dubs. The primary argument in favor of voice-overs is that they allow for a full viewing, as constantly reading dialogue takes away from any action or plot development. Animating legend Hayao Miyazaki himself made the claim for native language VOs. For Miyazaki, closed captioning causes audiences to miss crucial parts of the story. 

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Other dub fans applaud non-Japanese voice actors for effectively capturing their characters. While there are admittedly some cringeworthy voice-overs out there, pro-dubbers claim the rise in popularity in anime has led to higher-quality translations and oral thespian skills. 

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CBR's Sean Aitchison lists several anime series that surpass their subtitled counterparts. Aitchison's reasoning behind each involves factors such as setting and creative advantages. Voice-overs also make binge-watching anime far easier for those who speak other languages. The more an anime receives dubbed versions, the more it can be appreciated by other cultures.

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One of the biggest arguments for sub over dub is translation. Inverse cites Naruto’s catchphrase—“Dattebayo”—as one glaring example. The American series translates the phrase as “Believe it!” while in Japanese it’s more closely akin to “Ya know?” This linguistic disconnect, along with other smaller nuances, takes away from the material’s context.  

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There are a few people that claim non-Japanese voice actors don’t really know how to dub anime. The same lack of context in the script causes dubbing voice actors to misinterpret specific scenes. As a result, moments vital to the series are overlooked or lost completely. 

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CBR's Aitchison also compares series that are far better subbed than dubbed. In this group, Japanese casts aptly hit the appropriate emotional marks. Most anime actors grew up in the culture the anime is portraying, and thus understand how to properly enunciate in accordance with the show’s societal elements. 

FINAL RESULTS
Entertainment
How do you watch anime: dubbed or subbed?
#DubOnly
A festive crown for the winner
#SubOnly