Do you remember when you first got turned on to anime? I was sitting here listening to my Winamp list of music from various anime series, and suddenly Mamono Hunter Yoko popped on and I was trust back in time to 1995, when I had first watched it, courtesy of AD Vision (aka ADV Films). Yoko wasn’t the first anime series I had watched. My first exposure to anime in a conscious sense was Dirty Pair back in 1989 at TimeCon ’89, when they screened a showing of Flight 005. Prior to that, I had been watching shows like Robotech and Star Blazers, and Battle of the Planets. Hell, Speed Racer is in there, too, but I don’t think I consciously understood it was Japanese animation and therefore I wasn’t really an anime fan (yet). I remember thinking how funny Dirty Pair could be and at the same time, how serious it was. The ending of Flight 005 was rather heavy-hearted, in spite of all the humor that most Dirty Pair movies or episodes seem to carry. I just recently rewatched the Dirty Pair OAVs I had on DVD and thought they were still pretty hilarious.
The first anime series I watched was Ranma Nibunnoichi, in English, and I still watch it in English (up until Sarah Strange is traded for an actual male voice). Long ago, though, I did sit down with all my box sets and watched in Japanese. I’m not sure if the argument can be made here, but I think whichever language you watch a series in first is typically which one you like best. I watched Tenchi in Japanese, and then listened to the English track on laserdisc, only to cringe about as bad as I did when I heard the AnimEigo English production of Bubblegum Crisis. But before I dive into yet another argument of sub vs. dub… after listening to Koi no Coup! I am suddenly feeling as though I need to go home and watch something old again, to remind me why I love this artform so much.