Under the Dog: This Was a Triumph

Article — By on September 7, 2014 1:29 pm

This post was written by Dark_Sage. He is Dark_Sage.

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Now that the Under the Dog anime has been financed via Kickstarter, I think it’s time we all take a deep breath and look back on our accomplishments.

Under the Dog

For you dirty plebs who don’t know what Under the Dog is, it’s a fantastic anime based around high school girls shooting things. And it was successfully financed via a Kickstarter campaign.


Cuz Persona 3 made suicide cool.

Cuz Persona 3 made suicide cool.

Now, some of you may say “Hey Dark_Sage, if Under the Dog is so fantastic, why didn’t you bring this to our attention earlier? It seems like having one of the biggest English-language anime blogs around (yes, even with my current laziness, we’re far bigger than most) being silent would limit its exposure and interfere with it reaching its funding goals.”

To you, I say “pish and posh”. I’ve had nothing but excitement for this project since the beginning, and since this anime was finally funded, I am going to speak on just what us backers accomplished by opening our wallets.




Keeping Anime Alive

Actual promo art.

Actual promo art.

Everyone knows that anime is dying. Japan keeps churning out show after show about high school girls doing high school girl things, and relying on the same old plots and the same old characters is completely unsustainable.

Luckily, Gunslinger Girl Noir Canaan Phantom Kite Coppelion Angel Heart Under the Dog is willing to take on the unique concept of giving teenage girls guns and having them fight for shadowy organizations because they’ve been coerced into it.


Under the Dog is so ORIGINAL

tl;dr: high school students become assassins for the UN under threats that their families will be killed if they don’t comply

By god, anime could only be saved any more if they were also selling a sexy, otakubait version of the protag in plastic form!


Under the Dog Figure

Yours, for only $200.

Fill in anime’s grave, boys. We won’t be needing it anymore.




So what did we pay for?

Under the Dog Funding

Well, it wasn’t fleshing out the story to make it relevant and interesting, since the script was already finished 17 years ago.

Jiro Ishii - Under the Dog


And it wasn’t for making a TV series, since they already had offers for that, which they declined.

We have offers for a 26 episode TV series. We don’t want to take this because 1) We do not care for TV quality anime 2) We don’t want to be at the whim of the publisher or a Production Committee.

Man, a Production Committtee would be awful. I bet they’d try to shoehorn in some bullshit high school girl fanservice that would delegitimatize the actual high school girl fanservice.


Under the Dog MC-chan

If they made her breasts any more prominent it would be a serious compromise of their artistic vision.


It was…

Once we have an episode, we have better leverage with film investors so that we can be funded for a feature film and retain creative freedom. With an established franchise and fan base and a slick proof of concept in the form of a 24 minute episode. Our ultimate goal right now is to create an UTD film trilogy.


Oh. We paid for a proof-of-concept for what they actually wanted to make instead of the OVA we’re getting. But surely the OVA will be high quality anyway.


Under the Dog Specs

Look at those super-high specs. This really is for the fans.



And at such fair prices too!


Anime: Fukken Saved

Anime: so saved




Fuck those dirty fansubbers

And let’s not forget the subs. The UTD committee reached out to the west for money via Kickstarter, so they’re obliged to give us a translated version. And everyone knows professional translations are the best.


Pro subs courtesy of Funimation.

Pro subs courtesy of Funimation.

Sure, doubters may point to the fact that anyone with competent translation abilities has better options available than working for peanuts in an industry abandoned by all companies of relevance. But “professional” is a big word, so that means it’s good. And official. But the Under the Dog team originally didn’t understand that.


Under the Dog Help

Under the Dog Fansubs


Good thing some industry guardians were on the watch.

One of the developments that we can talk about right now is that we will be retracting our statements regarding the contentious fansub subtitles.

We have been in communication with a few professional subtitling groups, namely Polymanga and CrunchyRoll, and they have been kind enough to help educate us on the unfortunate degradation of fansub groups, piracy, and their affects on the industry. We would like to ardently thank the Polymanga and CrunchyRoll groups for reaching out and engaging in these conversations with us so that we can all benefit and forge progress together.


If there’s any company authorized to speak on how bad fansubs are, it’s Crunchyroll. The company originally built on providing sketchy, low-quality fansub rips to people who who didn’t know any better, and which now has a staff primarily made of former (and current, but shh) fansubbers. And not just them. Polymanga had some important thoughts to add to the conversation too.

Yes, Polymanga. The French anime convention.


Apparently the French found some time away from converting to Islam to run an anime con.

Apparently the French found some time away from converting to Islam to run an anime con and bitch about English subtitles. Lucky us.



A cause for celebration

UTD Thanks

I think everyone involved in this grand scheme deserves a pat on the back. We did it, guys.


Tumblr We Did It

Twitter We Did It

ANN We Did It


We truly saved anime.

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torch says:

Did you back it though?

Dark_Sage says:

Pitched in $1 for the automatic updates. Wasn’t about to blow $60 on some generic, LQ OVA.

Dark_Sage says:

I mean, yeah. Pledged at the $500 level. Had to get the BD signed, ya know.

PP says:

>tl;dr: high school students become assassins for the UN under threats that their families will be killed if they don’t comply

Isn’t that what Hitler did? I think I see a connection.

You forgot to mention this will only be done by December of 2015, that’s like, a long fucking time.

I don’t care if this got funded or not honestly, on one hand if this failed it’d have just been another “hey, the west really doesn’t care about anime!” excuse (which doesn’t really matter for the average user but still) on the other hand this was retardedly overpriced and is pretty fucking cheap and not what KS is meant to be and only promotes even more bad usage incase someone decides to try funding an anime with KS again, this could be the biggest pile of shit to air on TV in the last 50 years, who cares, they already got paid for their work.
And they fucking wanted $5.1 million to make a 90-120 minutes movie, what the fuck, that’s like 5 times the budget (since BDs and stuff wouldn’t scale the same) just for animation, screw AAA quality, this will look like pretty much any other anime, not to mention movie = theaters = more money = not as much money needed, not to mention you could extend that air time to 2017, just disgusting.

>talking about how fansubbers ruin the industry
How ironic, a company who doesn’t support the industry talking about things that don’t support the industry.

Hairy says:

December 2015? Anime will surely be dead by then.

PP says:

It’ll come out just in time to save it.

LotusGG says:

Is this 480p low-bitrate dvd-only OVA shit?

Dark_Sage says:

I doubt we’ll be that lucky. 360p seems to be what they’ll top out at.

Argon says:

I’m making a note here: huge success. ~

Dave says:

>high school students

This two things don’t go together. This overpriced OVA will suck.

Fuwaa says:

The popularity of Assassination Classroom would seem to disagree with you.

aa says:

Akuma no Riddle wasn’t that successful though and there have been plenty of other shows about this.

alt0 says:

That ANN comment at the end just made my day.

zanon says:

Thank you DS-sensei for informing us this momentous event in anime history, no, in the entire history of our species! For too long have we dreamed of Independent Creatives having a chance to escape The Man and produce original, quality productions delivered to fans with cutting edge 1993 technology and subs provided by, uh, That Man, who is often confused with The Man but is totally not. That Man Cares(TM) for us.

I somehow experienced sun spots and anyway Cthulhu was over for tea so I missed my opportunity to contribute to this noble endeavor but I can join the rest of you in looking with wonder at those special, special people who put large amounts of money into making this happen. Truly Anime Is Saved.

Googol says:

So it was all about a shitty OVA? And here I thought they’d be making a full-length series or a movie. Did they even need all that money?

PP says:

>Did they even need all that money?
No, not really.
They had offers for a 26 episode series even.

Another question could be “Did they even want all that money?”, the answer to that would be:
Yes, yest really.

LotusGG says:

Normal anime costs about 100-200k each ep.
High-budget anime costs 300k+
With that budget, they could handle about 2 or 3 high-quality episodes.

PP says:

Only like 40% is going to actual animation, on their KS page they said about they’d pull some of their own pocket if it only reached 580k so they could spend 350k on animation.
Bigger budgets never meant better quality though.

Tobikage says:

Bigger budget = more pizza and beer for the staff.

PP says:

Also, I just noticed, this isn’t a review!

Dark_Sage says:

Or is it?

PP says:

You tell me.

Solaristics says:

>Pro subs courtesy of Funimation.

Make it happen. We can all gouge our eyes out together and not watch the OVA that will most likely revolve around the girls ass. Overpriced OVA is overpriced.

shcboomer says:

Best subs confirmed for this show.

Ralon17 says:

Whoa whoa whoa. Give them a bit more credit than that.
It will definitely revolve around her tits.

moozooh says:

One of her tits was bared in the OVA. You were right all along!

Baroness von Wilkie says:

I see that Lord Philip Sarc is alive and well.

FichteFoll says:

I opened the site, watched the video, was sort of entertained, then closed and stopped bothering. Actually, I looked at the backer rewards too.

Watching the UTD trailer preview sorta thing was actually the most “watching anime”-like activity I did in almost a year. So, did UTD save anime?

… Not for me.

PP says:

So you’re just here for the F- reviews?
Me too! Too bad fansubbing has reach a peak of perfection.

Tobikage says:

Gods. What is the e-world coming to? approx 800,000 USD for ONE shitty episode?
Also, if sarcasm was food, D_S would have solved half the world’s hunger problems with this post.

qwerty says:

High school assassins being forced to kill by having their families threatened?

…Why are they acting like this is even remotely original/will be successful? You could fund like 40 localizations of visual novels with that money, based off the KS of World End Economica. Hell, even an original VN like Dysfunctional Systems only asked for 60k, and I think I’d get more than 24 minutes of enjoyment from it than this (assuming it’ll even be good, which I doubt).

Tobikage says:

Worst thing is, they turned down a 26-ep anime series offer. Part of me wants to praise their entrepreneurial spirit, but I suspect I will have forgotten all about this ‘anime’ by tomorrow.

ryachi says:

B-but anime was already saved by Kill la Kill.

MM says:
Trigger is also directing this
Alex says:

The “save anime” thing wasn’t part of the original pitch, as far as I remember. Wouldn’t be surprised if some of the reddit or 4chan idiots who think that a meme is the same as marketing came up with that one later on…

Still think it’s an interesting experiment – but seeing the amount of money that’s required, it doesn’t seem that anime production is a business that can be easily revolutionized through crowdfunding…

Black Shads says:

After contributing to the controversy on twitter, I was promptly replied to by a representative of UTD. In length, actually. He or she tried their best to explain the company’s(?) viewpoint in a civil manner. I have to say, I wasn’t expecting it. I’m sure if anyone else has a question, they’d be happy to respond. https://twitter.com/underthedogpr/status/509474469304221696

Anony says:

what is this i dont even

who in their right mind would PAY for this crap?

El Huesudo II says:

12,157 people, apparently.

Though yeah, it could be said that most of them might not have been in their right minds. Especially the 20 people who paid $950, the 5 backers who paid $2K, the 2 backers who paid $5K, and the 2 rich slobs with 10 grand to spare.

asdaman says:

There is so many manga out there that are not necessarily commercial, which needs to be adapted to anime. Many fans of those series might find in this kickstarter thingy, the only chance to see their dreams come true.
If my favorite manga end up being supported in one of those endeavors, I might end up mortgaging my house for it.

DemonReaperKing says:

-> We have offers for a 26 episode TV series. We don’t want to take this because 1) We do not care for TV quality anime 2) We don’t want to be at the whim of the publisher or a Production Committee.

After refusing this offer, they end making a single fucking 24 min episode. Even the trailer’s length is a tenth of that of OVA

It’s like they are saying – We suck dick, but only our own.

First Comment here at CryMore.

Eternal_Blizzard says:

So… now that this exists, review post incoming?

Dark_Sage says:



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