Anime Abandon: Tokyo Godfathers

An anime film about Christmas that’s NOT a punch to the brain?! This IS a Christmas miracle!

//Taboola Area

About Bennett the Sage

Bennett "The Sage" White has opinions, and you have ears. Let him put those opinions in your ears.

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92 Comments on "Anime Abandon: Tokyo Godfathers"

I'mVeryAngryIt'sNotButter
Guest
I'mVeryAngryIt'sNotButter

It’s hard to be hyped up for next week’s review when you don’t even show us what it is.

LibraHorse
Guest

It’s one of the Inu Yasha movies. I’m calling it.

Amkus
Guest

Well you could go to his site right now and find out

CrisA
Guest
It’s always seemed to me that subtitled films are something you basically have to learn how to watch. If you watch subtitled films frequently, you can easily answer all the questions that you posed about that clip in the video, because youv’e trained yourself in how to do that. In a way, after a period you stop actually “reading” the subtitles. You kind of just… absorb them. I’m not just speaking in terms of anime, for the record, but any subtitled media. It really is a skill you have to learn. It’s a completely different way of both watching films… Read more »
XeroM52
Guest

True that.
Here in Mexico where a lot of movies are realeased in English with subtitles, we are all accoustemed to “absorb” the subtitles, like you put it. This subtitle problem is something mostly USA has, and maybe Australia and the UK.

becski
Guest

I never really had to learn to ‘absorb’, maybe it’s because the few French lessons I had at school, the teacher would just stick a film on with subtitles – I was the only person paying attention. I find if you are enjoying watching something, your brain just automatically adjusts – It shouldn’t really take you more than 20 minutes to become accustomed to subtitles.

Btw, I am from the UK – the only people I know who refuse subs, are some of my older relatives who are just very stubborn!

Hentai Slayer
Guest

Similar to me. I was used to watching subbed films and cartoons pretty much since I learned to read so I never had any problem of following the flow of the movie.

The MegaNerd
Guest

I watch so much foreign stuff (not just anime but various other genres) that reading the subs comes second nature to me. Plus a lot of languages actually sound pleasing to the ear, at least to me.

Lou H. Wolfskin
Guest

While as a german i actually would have a wide array of dubbed anime i still chose to go with subs and learned how to “absorb”.
At first because i wanted to see what the difference is, later on in many cases, because i couldn’t stand the dubbed voices.

But yes, watching an anime, or anything else, with subs is a skill you have to learn.

englerp
Guest

Same here in Luxembourg. J have access to German, French and English dubs, but i prefer subs.
With some exceptions due to nostalgia (Some French dubs) or because the dub is really good (Like the excellent German dub of Detective Conan). Never really liked English anime dubs, somehow.

Interestingly, i associate French dubs\subs more with Anime than German\English one. I just seems to feel right. Same goes for translated Manga.

LuciusMadgloom
Guest

Ok Lou H. Wolfskin, Englerp. Would you kindly list me a few German Dubbed Anime?…. I’m from Poland & haven’t had the opportunity to be touch with German for years & I’d love to watch more stuff in German so the language won’t wade out for me from lack of any kind of interaction with it.. Please? BTW I saw Hellsing, Digimon, X & Agent Aika in German (which had a dubb far superior to the English one )

englerp
Guest

Most of the stuff i watched dubbed in German, i watched on TV, so i don’t know that many dubs of OVAs and movies, though the German dubs of the Miyazaki films are not bad.
Concerning shows: The German Detective Conan dub iis really good one of the few cases where i prefer the German to the French dub (Which was rather lackluster imho). I also quite liked the Cat’s Eye dub. DBZ was solid afair.
I have to say, i’m a bit out of touch though.

Andre961
Guest
That is pretty easy, follwing animes got dubbed in Germany: Pokemon InuYasha (interesting the dubs of the movies keep Japanese honorics like -same and -chan and even use words like oni and yokai while the show ignores the honorics and just uses demon) Sailor Moon Kickers DoReMi Jeanne, die Kamikaze Diebin One Piece Taro Alien Flint Hammerhead Detektiv Conan Das Dschungelbuch Power Stone Wedding Peach Yu-Gi-Oh! Blue Dragon Inazuma Eleven Pretty Cure Monster Rancher Beyblade Duel Masters Dragon Ball and its following series Elfenlief Lady Oscar Heidi Ranma Kimba Mila Superstar Pom Poko Chihiro’s Reise ins Zauberland Ponyo Das wandelnde… Read more »
ran76
Guest

I can’t speak for anyone else but I’ve always been a fairly fast reader and when I started watching subbed anime I got faster. I can usually read the subs fast enough to be able to see everything that’s going on in the scene, only rarely having to rewind.

blue.knight-626
Guest

thank for understanding, honestly some people just don’t care to adjust to reading subs

Turin231
Guest

I agree completely. Sage your opinion is all about people that are not use to watch subtitles movies/amine. You come from an english speaking country. For the rest of the world the movies/anime you have seen and the majority of games people have played in english did this with subtiltes. Its all about habbit. If you get use to seen subtitles content is amazingly easy to follow it and answer all of your questions.

Raiden Kokurai
Guest

It still feels like busy work, looking down at subtitles and then looking back up to the action possibly missing small little details that could have happened on the scene.
I wanted to speak Japanese at one point so I dont have to read.. But since I am a lazy piece of shit I cant be bothered.
So I mostly avoid subbed anime unless I REALLY like it.

SkyWhiteRose
Guest

entirely correct. i watch subbed anime, i have trained myself to absorb the subtitles but i’ve also picked up some of the basics of japanese to make that easier. nothing major, hello, goodbye, good day. the stuff anyone could pick up. its just a matter of patience and dedication to your love of the media in question in my opinion. i ADORE anime so its no chore to have to learn a new way of watching something. it also helped me in my own french classes when my teacher would put on the movies

RJ Dalton
Guest
Agreed. It is something you do have to teach yourself to do. My attitude towards dubs is that, provided the people doing the dubbing make a genuine attempt to do a good job and don’t just shit all over it to get a product out and on the market as quickly and profitably as possible, there’s not really a problem with it. Because some people are just casual watchers and don’t want to get as involved in every aspect of the film. There’s nothing inherently wrong with that, because everybody watches movies in different ways for different reasons. But that… Read more »
Aroree
Guest

I know exactly how you feel. I watch some French period pieces in sub sometimes (mostly Count of Monte Cristo with Gerard Depardieu) and after a bit, I don’t even ‘hear’ the French, I certainly don’t know more than a few words, but I read fast enough that I can interpret the speech like English. Same when I watch subbed anime.

The only reason I prefer dubbed is that I like to multitask, in which I play video games or draw while watching….which I cannot do with subs since I need to read the speech. XD

a Canadian Guy
Guest

I guess the last name White doesn’t joke around, and of course he deserves dubbed over subbed.

I’m a white Italian, and i enjoy subs more than dubs when it comes to a majority of animes.

As for Tokyo Godfathers, i’ve watched it a couple times, i got it on my computer and it’s one of those films that is just simply good for this time of the year.

Much like Charlie Brown’s Christmas.

XeroM52
Guest

I have a copy Tokyo Godfathers dubbed….in spanish.
I was walking down a Waltmart and found it.

Hurlbut
Guest
Thank you so much for reviewing this brilliant Christmas special. It was the Nostalgia Critic who introduced me to Tokyo Godfathers in his Overlooked Christmas Specials. I quickly went out to find a copy and yes was blown away by both the animation, the story filled to the brim with miracles and the display of humanity in all of us..(save for those punk kids who beat on homeless people). I prefer subtitles and with time it’s a viewing you adapt to. Like American Sign Language that uses hand symbols but your eyes must concentrate on the signer’s facial expression. Listening… Read more »
Hurlbut
Guest

Oh and your title card drawing of you and the Tokyo Godfather cast is adorable. 🙂

KouTheMad
Guest

High Pitched Japanese Female voice rationale is fine, especially when your Autistic and thus have sensitive ears. Way to have Sympathy for those with Mental Disabilities.

TooMuchFreeTime
Guest

I actually stumbled across this one at my local library. I remember it being good but I’ve forgotten so much about it I think I’m due for a rewatch.

I have no real idea what the next one is but your reaction makes me think it’s Love Hina related lol.

TragicGuineaPig
Guest

The only way that ending could have been funnier is if the package was hand-delivered by Spoony, Doug, or JesuOtaku.

Carteeg_Struve
Guest

Or all there standing there in caroling attire with bright shining faces singing “We Wish You a Merry Christmas” while holding out the package.

Carteeg_Struve
Guest

-Or all “three” standing there.

Ugh. I miss having an edit feature.

Amesang
Guest

Who else was picturing an animé version of “VCR Golf?”

Do they even have an animé/manga about golf? I’m not sure “Prince of Golf” would be an appealing title.

dyogicuevas
Guest

that ending music…..I think……can it be?

TragicGuineaPig
Guest

Yep! It’s Gustav Holst, The Planets, “Mars”.

whiskeyii
Guest

Just finished Tokyo Godfathers! I was expecting it to be bittersweet, but it was so darn heartwarming! XD

akeema
Guest

Tokyo Godfathers is friggin awesome! Fantastic remake of 3 Godfathers that is actually better than the original and that movie was great 🙂

Souledge94
Guest

As you mentioned about the whole dub and sub thing you cant really judge the perfromance fully if you dont know the language itself. This also bugs me about dub haters who say they put no emotion in dubs but say subs do when themselves dont speak the language or know the language.

Taikoun
Guest

I’m realy surprised to know that this movie isn’t dub in english. I was curious to know how they sound.

Rowler
Guest
I personally prefer dubs. I feel I absorb more from a series when I hear what is going on. As someone who does get sensory overload, dub makes it easier to focus. I also like to have a show playing while I draw in Photoshop, however doing this with sub shows is very very difficult. I know some people are purely subs. I do understand why people would prefer the Japanese voice cast over something that sounds like it was recorded in someone’s basement…however some sub purest seem to overreact to the whole thing. Disney has a great voice cast… Read more »
helli0n
Guest

So based on that bit at the end where you can’t figure out why its set in Christmas, I guess you missed the point (which was pointed out a lot less subtlety in the clip you showed your friends) that the three bums are “Magi” and the abandoned baby is “Jesus.”

Its a lot harder to have a Magi/Baby Jesus-esque story if you set it in the summer. I know its not a retelling or anything of the like, but its pretty clear that those are the characters.

sylvacoer
Guest
Heh, you made the point I was going to make as to why this is a Christmas-exclusive movie! Sure, the timeline is cut off before Epiphany (the 12th day of Christmas, when the Magi presented their gifts to the infant Jesus), but taking it to New Years (which is the Octave of Christmas, and the celebration of Mary as Mother) makes sense within the story being told, wherein the focus is on rebirth/renewal and connection. While I hesitate to ascribe Christian eschatology to the director and writer, it seems like the parties involved knew more about what was involved in… Read more »
Minion of Yahtzee
Guest

Tokyo Godfathers, looks like a fine flick to watch around the holidays. Now to wait until we find out what in the name of all that’s sacred Mark sent you. WHAT IS IT? WHAT IN THE NAME OF HELL IS THAT THING?! Is it a Yaoi, a Shonen, a other copy of Violence Jack, Evangelion 1.11, a copy of the Love Hina series? WHAT IS IT?! Can’t wait until next time. MERRY CHRISTMAS LUNCHBOX!

kyuven
Guest

Translation explanation time:
The insult that sets Hana off is “kusojiji”, which literally means “shitty old man”
She mentions she wants to be called “kusobaba,” which means “shitty old woman”
…or actually she doesn’t care what she’s called as long as she’s not called anything masculine.

This Japanese lesson brought to you by someone who has spent waaaay to much time studying it.

Hurlbut
Guest

Thanks for sharing that lesson. It will add more to my next viewing. Domo Arigato Gozaimasu.:)

Olaf Smacktard
Guest

I’m going to be disappointed if it’s not Boku no Pico.

lilbird
Guest
I was introduced to “Tokyo Godfathers” from Suede when he talked about it one Christmas, and when I watched it, I fell in love. It was my first time being exposed to Satoshi Kon, which was probably a good way to get into his works since I wasn’t yet used to getting mindscrewed. Thus far, “Tokyo Godfathers” is the only Satoshi Kon movie I own mainly because I just haven’t run into the other films yet (I’m still kicking myself for not snatching “Paranoia Agent” when I saw it mainly because I didn’t have the money). And since you explained… Read more »
turboeli
Guest
I didn’t start watching anime subbed until six months before I moved to Japan to work. (I ended up there for six years.) And it wasn’t a great immersion technique to learn much Japanese, since the register of speech people use isn’t very realistic. But after I was there, I kept buying R1 DVDs and kept watching subs as well as dubs, to see how the translation worked, and I got used to it. My Japanese isn’t great, but anyway, there were times when I didn’t need subtitles to figure out the gist. And yes, it is a modest distraction… Read more »
turboeli
Guest

Also, scanning (the skill related to reading,) is definitely relevant. If you can read 400 wpm, subs aren’t that big a deal.

TomAndDontAsk
Guest

If you watch your entertainment in its original language, and understand what’s happening. Give me a Hell Yeah!

The MegaNerd
Guest

HELL YEAH!!!

FolornProphet
Guest

I’m going to mirror some other comments. I have been watching subs since I was very young, not only that, but I have been reading books since I was small too. I read subtitles faster than they speak their dialogue, so then I simply am able to watch the background and foreground. I answered all the questions correct that you asked in your video.

The MegaNerd
Guest

Being a reader helps with being able to ‘absorb’ subs.

nroejb
Guest

I life in germany, and always watch german dubs except if they are so terrible that it makes you wanna smash your head against a wall 30 times in a row, in that case I prefer subs.
Considering the average qulity of german anime subs that means I virtually only watch subs as almost all anime get horrible localisation.

Anyway if you are used to subs you get better at getting the whole picture, and in good anime I tend to repeat a scene after reading the subs and watch it again. somestimes more than once (well so do I with dubs).

Carteeg_Struve
Guest

One tip to make subs easier… don’t sit too close if you’re watching on a computer monitor. If you sit just a little further back than what you’re normally used to (whatever that distance is), your eyes will be better trained to take in more of the whole image rather than looking from one part of the screen to another.

No matter what, getting good at taking in everything with subs is still something to practice with.

That said, I completely understand the issues in regards to the editing process for the videos.

Time Signature
Guest

I prefer subs to dubs, simply because I like the sound of the Japanese language.

GDwarf
Guest

This is easily my favourite Christmas movie, and I’m so glad to see it finally getting more exposure. It’s a hugely-fun, yet still dramatic, Christmas romp that everyone should watch at least once.

ThisIsScorpio
Guest

This is the best christmas/new years anime of all time, and one of the great all-around anime classics AND holiday movies in general! It is sooooooooooooooo good!

I’m glad that both Doug and Sage give it some well deserved attention!

Daemian Lucifer
Guest

Reading subtitles depends largely on the device you are watching the work on.Back in the day when I was still watching tv,I had no problem with subbed works.But now that I watch everything on a computer,with a big ass monitor that is just about 1m from my eyes,its much harder for me to focus on the the action and still comprehend more than 50% of the text.I have to focus either on reading or on whats happening on the screen.

Chieftac
Guest

What about Hourou Musuko / Wandering Son? Yes it’s a anime series instead of a movie like Tokyo Godfather but it’s probably the one series that mentions transgenderism the most of all anime because the main characters are transgender people and it is the main subject of the series!!

KurvosVicky
Guest
What I think is very important to address is that while even though the specific person in this movie is a transgender person – a guy dressing up in the same way a female does doesn’t always mean they want to BE a girl. Sometimes, a guy just wants to be allowed to be effeminate and androgynous. And this is an issue never ever tackled in any movies or shows from my experience. Also, for the record – I haven’t seen this movie, but I could follow that scene with subtitles perfectly fine. Then again, I’m used to subtitled movies.… Read more »
whiskeyii
Guest

Nah, in this case, Hana states (in the subs) “I’m a mistake made by God!” and something about wanting to be a woman. Unfortunately in Japan’s case, the term “okama” is used to lump both a gay, or effeminate, or trans person all into one label. Nowadays there’s more distinction between trans and gay in anime, which is nice, but it’s still a common stereotype that gets bandied around.

KurvosVicky
Guest

Well… see? That’s the issue I have here. And it’s downright horrible that a effeminate androgynous guy should have to view themselves as a “mistake made by God”. It’s especially baffling since animes are very well known for having effeminate androgynous males in them all the time.

Phoenixangelgal
Guest
Japan has a strange relationship regarding homosexuality. Long time ago, the Japanese were very much like the Greeks. A lot of the feudal lords would take in male lovers (younger boys), and it was pretty much a thing in the temples. The Kabuki theaters used to be all female cast, but started hiring boys and men when there were cases of the female actors supposedly prostituting themselves. They then realized that more of the prostitutes were the male actors. Supposedly the idea of homophobia came when the European countries started making their way into Japan. And now Japan has a… Read more »
Phoenixangelgal
Guest
Also, we should also realize that the ideal Japanese man is DIFFERENT from a European/American one. Japan has an entirely different body type, so it’s very uncommon to find a guy ripping with muscles (AHnold, Stallone, WWE wrestling, etc). Japanese men have more slender body types, and so anime portrays them as slender. Some may even say androgynous. Heck, if you look at Bara (gay manga made by gay men FOR gay men), it is often shown that overly muscular men would be the SUBMISSIVE ones. meanwhile yaoi is made by women for women. Women are told to be abstinith,… Read more »
whiskeyii
Guest
Uh, while I agree with you that androgyny should be more widely accepted, my point was that Hana specifically wants to be female. Not androgynous or effeminate. Just straight up female. One more point I’d like to make about androgyny in anime. Out of all the series I’ve watched (and I tend to watch newer anime, as opposed to older ones), androgynous males only LOOK androgynous. They never ACT it. Effeminate gestures and/or language (mixing the pronouns women tend to use in Japan with the pronouns men use) are typically used to code or outright mark characters as being gay,… Read more »
Falconfly
Guest

Well, Hana is a christian. She may not straight up hate herself, but she probably did internalise things like “transgendered people are mistakes of God” or the like.

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