If Crunchyroll made dubs



  • Spring 2016. A season that was pretty decent for dub fans yet utterly amazing for sub fans. We ALL have a love/hate relationship with the company that kept the sub fans happy, Crunchyroll.

    And it left me wondering even more - what if Crunchyroll produced their own dubs?

    I'm not ENTIRELY sure what goes into purchasing international rights, and tried but failed to ask Justin Sevakis about it. From what I gather, there are individual licensing, streaming, and home media rights, and having the licensing rights means you have the dubbing rights unless the Japanese specifically tell you not to.

    But then there's the case of Free!. For those who don't know, this series has two seasons, Iwatobi Swim Club and Eternal Summer. Funimation licensed and dubbed Eternal Summer with an all-star cast… and a controversial screenplay... but unfortunately Discotek, a sub-only company, got Iwatobi Swim Club. It looked like Free! was doomed to have one season un-dubbed permanently, making it look ugly But then Crunchyroll came to the rescue, and they themselves produced a dub for the first season that not only retained the original cast but also forced screenwriter J Michael Tatum to learn from his mistakes.

    So... why doesn't Crunchyroll do the same for other shows? There are plenty of shows on the site that have never been dubbed, and even more that haven't been licensed. They obviously can't have their own studio as, like Viz Media, they are based in San Francisco and have to contract work from Bang Zoom and Studiopolis. But they can still get the rights to dub whatever show they want on their site. All they have to do is do what they did with Discotek for other licensors, and we're good to go!

    So, do you like this idea? And which shows on the site would you like to see dubbed? I would personally like to see... oh lordy, I would want to see them all. Okay fine - for licensed shows, I'd like to see Samurai Flamenco, Star Driver, Familiar of Zero F, Anohana, The Irregular at Magic High School, Arpeggio of Blue Steel, Plastic Memories, Haikyu, Nisekoi, all things Monogatari, School Days (but only in a Ghost Stories format - because that show sucks otherwise), and Shirobako - and I kept the list short there. For unlicensed works, I'd go with pretty much everything they got from Spring 2016, as well as Polar Bear Cafe and... phew, it's taking me forever to go through their library. I'll let you decide.



  • @Gemnist:

    So… why doesn't Crunchyroll do the same for other shows? There are plenty of shows on the site that have never been dubbed, and even more that haven't been licensed. They obviously can't have their own studio as, like Viz Media, they are based in San Francisco and have to contract work from Bang Zoom and Studiopolis. But they can still get the rights to dub whatever show they want on their site. All they have to do is do what they did with Discotek for other licensors, and we're good to go!

    Well, granted of course; I have no idea what this "Crunchyroll" product is…

    It is probably a matter of cost. The cost to dub something vs sub only it is quite high… if they dubbed more things, then their subscription prices would probably end up being more like FUNimation's: No longer have that "price magnet" away from here, it is so. So, to keep the prices low, the put out maximum volume of content at lowest cost possible...

    As long as people on CR's site don't /ragequit over not having lots of dubs; nothing shall change, it is so…



  • True, they're probably just saving costs, and true, they're greedy (though I personally would rather take Chris Patton's/Troy Baker's word of it instead of Michael Douglas', just FYI). That being said though, I'm willing to bet they make more money than any other international anime distribution company besides Funimation - in fact they might even beat it. They could probably afford to do more dubs, and it's not like they have to broadcast dub; they just have to get the rights and release the dub on streaming. I know that completionists will argue that there are no home media releases with it (unless they want to do that also as I've heard that's relatively easy), and I know those sub idiots will complain about dubs being on the site (though I don't think anyone's complaining that you can get the entire Devil is a Part-Timer dub for free there, or even that the Ghost Stories dub is on there), but it's called progress. Crunchyroll has come a long way since being what is arguably an illegal streaming site - they can take some leaps of faith. Just… baby steps.



  • @Gemnist:

    That being said though, I'm willing to bet they make more money than any other international anime distribution company besides Funimation - in fact they might even beat it. They could probably afford to do more dubs, and it's not like they have to broadcast dub; they just have to get the rights and release the dub on streaming.

    The cost model for CR/Funimation is/are not fair. CR's cost per unit of product is miles cheaper then FUN, because they spend 0 on dubbing. Or physical release. SO they can easily afford to pay Japanese licensors higher fees; whereas FUNImation would struggle.

    …yet another reason I say CR is evil. The "free market" is, in effect "pricing out dubs", as it were. Of course, it is hard to say this definitively without the numbers; being private companies both, it is rather a simple matter of speculation. IN either case, if you think CR is "cheaper/better value" then FUNimation...



  • Oh definitely Funimation has the best overall quality of available options whereas you're stuck with streaming for Crunchyroll. In fact, forget home media if you want to. Is there definitive proof that Crunchyroll won't do it? Well as you said, there isn't. It's all a matter of making it a truly successful thing a reality. So keep experimenting Crunchyroll - your Free dub was awesome!

    At any rate, which shows would you want? Their whole library is publicly available.



  • What's weird is Bleach and Naruto Shippuden have dubbed episodes on Hulu yet Crunchyroll doesn't kinda strange



  • @Gemnist:

    In fact, forget home media if you want to.

    Eaiser said then done. Tell that to FMA fans. Or many others. They exist on the stream, until they don't…

    https://youtu.be/LZ0epRjfGLw



  • Sure, but I doubt Crunchyroll would get rid of a dub THEY THEMSELVES MADE. Also, what's with the Tootsie Pop commercial?



  • @Gemnist:

    Also, what's with the Tootsie Pop commercial?

    …need I spell it out further? :)




  • well, why spend money to dub something, when someone else could do it?



  • @Getchman:

    well, why spend money to dub something, when someone else could do it?

    You still have to pay that "someone else" for the cost. It may be cheaper, but it still adds tangable cost to a series. It isn't like dub studios work for free, you know?…



  • And what if it's near impossible for someone else to do it, yet Crunchyroll feels it's worth it? That's why I put series up there that already have home media releases.



  • @Gemnist:

    yet Crunchyroll feels it's worth it?

    I am not saying it is impossible. What I am saying is that CR would have to change their business model if they decided to go full dub-mode like FUNimation. A few titles here or there won't kill them. But when they start dubbing titles that ultimately don't sell well; like FUNImation does regularly, IDK if that is a profit model that "Mr. CR" wants to operate with, nevertheless…

    ...we shall see nevertheless...



  • @thegrandalliance:

    You still have to pay that "someone else" for the cost. It may be cheaper, but it still adds tangable cost to a series. It isn't like dub studios work for free, you know?…

    Yeah, I know. I meant a licensors that regularly license and release anime and may or may not dub as well. basically not crunchyroll



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  • @Getchman:

    Yeah, I know. I meant a licensors that regularly license and release anime and may or may not dub as well. basically not crunchyroll

    Indeed, but if the dub is on CR's website; whomever owns the US IP rights will demand more $$$ then a simple sub by itself. Costs add up, nevertheless…



  • I never said that they should go full dub mode. They should just dub what they think would work. Dubbing ALL those series at once is not a good business plan, so really it's a pick-and-choose matter.



  • @Gemnist:

    They should just dub what they think would work. Dubbing ALL those series at once is not a good business plan, so really it's a pick-and-choose matter.

    Indeed, but knowing what is a "hit" before it is released, is a very hard guessing game. After all, FUNimation does the same thing of course. If it works, it should be fine. Otherwise it will cost them $$$.

    Also keep in mind, they do not sell physical DVD. So simply dubbing something, by itself, costs money. Unless dubbing something leads to the addition of new subscribers that otherwise wouldn't have joined CR without the dub; dubbing things, even popular shows, would run at a loss. If someone was willing to sub to CR without a DUB, and now they provide a DUB; the customer isn't paying anything extra for, "getting a freebe", and thus costs CR more money per customer in the end.



  • @thegrandalliance:

    Indeed, but knowing what is a "hit" before it is released, is a very hard guessing game. After all, FUNimation does the same thing of course. If it works, it should be fine. Otherwise it will cost them $$$.

    Also keep in mind, they do not sell physical DVD. So simply dubbing something, by itself, costs money. Unless dubbing something leads to the addition of new subscribers that otherwise wouldn't have joined CR without the dub; dubbing things, even popular shows, would run at a loss. If someone was willing to sub to CR without a DUB, and now they provide a DUB; the customer isn't paying anything extra for, "getting a freebe", and thus costs CR more money per customer in the end.

    Yeah, I agree with you. That's why they could do what Funimation does and offer a premium subscription at a higher price that would allow exclusive access to these dub shows. It could potentially work, in theory.



  • @nubguy:

    Yeah, I agree with you. That's why they could do what Funimation does and offer a premium subscription at a higher price that would allow exclusive access to these dub shows. It could potentially work, in theory.

    Unfortunately, that would be self-defeating: It would end up approx. the same price as FUNimation. The only true reason people "defect" to CR for the equivalent content, is generally the price in the end. If they raised prices, they would lose their pricing power edge over FUNimation (cost per unit of content).



  • @thegrandalliance:

    Unfortunately, that would be self-defeating: The would end up approx. the same price as FUNimation. The only true reason people "defect" to CR for the equivalent content, is generally the price in the end. If they raised prices, they would lose their pricing power edge over FUNimation (cost per unit of content).

    Yeah, that makes sense. Which is why it will probably never happen. It's a nice idea though.

    That said, I would totally be willing to pay extra to get Crunchyroll dubs.


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