Is sub better than dub? Can people really be that irritated by how a character’s voice is? Voice acting is important for an audience to grow fond of a character whether it be in a game, film or an anime. When it comes to asking people what do they prefer when it comes to dub or sub, the answer is commonly subbed and the reason is because their voices sound less whiny and better in Japanese.
Most of us who don’t know Japanese fluently grew up watching a lot of animes in dub so I don’t see the problem. People usually gain knowledge of an anime through dubbed when they were a child, no? Growing up in the UK, I watched a lot of dubbed animes that I thought had good voice actors e.g. Cardcaptors, Yu-Gi-Oh!, Dragonball Z, Beyblade and many more.
Overtime as I get into Japanese sub-culture pre-2006, I vaguely remember starting to watch subbed anime in 2009/10 and come across forums such as Gaia Online etc. saying the common reasons they believe subbed is better than dubbed. The only reason I started watching subbed back then was because if the anime I am watching is not dubbed yet or is only available to a Japanese audience and isn’t worldwide.
Then I got to thinking how a dub and sub voice can make you feel about a character. The other day I thought about Rikku in FFX-2 Last Mission and how much I disliked her Japanese voice but in English, it was likable for me. I can understand how a dubbed fan would feel.
There was one person in particular who mentioned about translating issues and censorship. Subs can be badly translated as seen as the picture above. With censorship, it will be changed to be TV approved especially for a US audience. The dubbed version can change the meaning of a whole anime. They can take parts out in the subs and change what the character is saying to make it more funnier for a Western audience.
Naruto and Pokémon are examples of animes where people despise the voice actors especially since both the main characters, Naruto and Ash are voiced by women in the dub but I have never had a problem with voice actors. There are a lot of things translated badly in animes from Japanese to English and vice versa which is a shame. In Pokémon, I remembered how Team Rocket called an onigiri a doughnut in the English dubbed and how annoyed I felt a few years ago when watching that and not understanding that in the past.
I must say though I do prefer subbed more though because there are some pretty underrated animes that I am discovering that should be given more recognition too. I especially enjoyed NANA, Gintama, Persona 4: The Animation even though they are pretty know in the anime world.
All in all, I believe both dubbed and subbed is good. Dub is made in your language for people who are not interest in sub and cannot speak Japanese. Not everyone is interested in learning how to speak Japanese. With Sub, it is the original thing, you can discover a lot of animes, and depending on your learning abilities I believe your listening skills will be better when watching anime. To be honest, some people are better readers than others who are better listeners so it depends on people’s choices. What do you guys think?