Hyouka is taking way too long to download (12 kbps), so I’m gonna review stuff that I already have on this computer. I watched this along with Tsumiki’s version, so you’ll see me directly compare the two releases at multiple points in this review.
Release format: MKV (254 MB, 10-bit)
Japanesiness: No honorifics.
English style: American English.
Group website: http://commiesubs.com/
Encoding details: http://pastebin.com/b3tRZT7V
8thsin’s translation critique: http://8ths.in/spring-2012-fansub-comparison-reviews#Acchi
Ji-hi’s screenshot comparisons: http://www.ji-hi.net/sp12/acchi/
Table of Contents
Opening. Commie’s karaoke style sometimes runs into snags, because it’s not really intended for hyper, kawaii J-pop. Not like Commie didn’t attempt to match it — indeed, they switched up the colors and made the anime title bounce alongside the Japanese text when it needed to. However, it lacked the “oomph” that pretty Japanese text going along at a k-timed rate can provide.
I don’t mean to say it was bad. Rather, it just wasn’t… exciting.
Ending. This was… fucking great. Well, not “fucking great”, but it was great. The font/color choice matched perfectly with the karaoke and the little *squeeze* effect at the end made me all =^_^=. What I’m saying is, I liked it.
Is it just me or is this not really… good? …at all?
There were a number of minor sound effects that Commie didn’t typeset.
This kind of typeset appears often in the show, so I’m just gonna post this one.
Including these minor signs so you can see just what, exactly, Commie did not typeset.
Okay, you get the picture, right? Awesome work from Commie. I skipped like 20 fucking signs or something to get to the end one here. The preview was masterfully handled. Really, fucking excellent job on this. I could actually read it, unlike Tsumiki’s.
When multiple characters were speaking, the lines were properly differentiated. For the most part, lines in the script never interfered with Japanese text or the typesetting. Good stuff.
I had no real problems with OP/ED. They functioned exactly as they should. If I were to nitpick, I’d say “I feel like I just don’t have it all” could be rephrased as “I feel like I’m missing something” in the OP.
This “clever” exchange of dialogue is anything but.
The “retort” is clumsily written. Three “home”s in two lines? No fucking thanks.
“As a regular guy, I’ve always been more at home in my house.” (“regular guy vs. outdoors guy” shows more wordplay than “normal person vs. outdoors guy”. This version also doesn’t repeat “home” clumsily.)
…The point of “So anyway” is that you can attach to any fucking sentence to start a new topic. It would not be out of the ordinary to use that phrase in… any context, really. Calling it out as weird here doesn’t really make sense.
This is the start of a poorly written joke by Commie. Here’s how it goes.
“How would you drag a cat away from the heater during winter?” (Forget the wordiness here. Shit gets worse.)
“Maybe you could entice her away with food?” (This is the setup of the joke.)
*Headbangs-kun gets an idea*
“If you don’t come play with us, then…”
“Then Io’s gonna get it!” (WTF)
Okay, Commie. You set up a fucking joke with “food” as the theme. How the hell does “Io’s gonna get it” fucking relate? It doesn’t. You killed the fucking joke. The #1 rule for comedy anime is that you never kill the fucking joke. Goddamn.
[Tsumiki] played this right with saying they could lure her outside with bait. And then Headbangs captured Io and used him as bait to get Tsumiki to come out and play (gotta keep ’em separated).
“That probably hurt more than falling would’ve.”
There’s absolutely no reason to “I think” here. Barring that, the line just sucks in general.
“Starting snow compression.”
The robot’s voice had proper punctuation in every other line. This looks like a simple mistake.
custom built -> custom-built
Not extremely important, but I’m gonna point it out anyway.
I couldn’t tell that the previous line had any dialect differences at all. How about you spend a few minutes on Google and determine what a Hiroshima dialect actually fucking sounds like?
The easiest way to reflect this dialect in your subs is to make the character sound like a mobster. Don’t take the lazy route and say “Oh well, I’m totally sure the English viewers picked up on the difference in the Japanese vocal inflections, so we don’t have to do anything with the line.”
Tsumiki played this one the right way.
Commie reflected this girl’s playful voice with a little slang. Not bad. Tsumiki didn’t do this as well.
Tsumiki made it seem like the eyes were unrelated to the nose here, leading to a very confusing part later on where a girl threw onion juice in Headbangs’s face to see if she’d tear up. Commie’s made a lot more sense.
The tenses don’t match.
“I was just joking.”
…What? I’ve never fucking heard this phrasing with “recipe”. The more I think about it, the more shitty it looks.
“We used Tsumiki’s special recipe.”
Otherwise “We made it with Tsumiki’s special recipe.” also sounds better. I am fucking stumped by whatever logic was used for the original line.
Super mistimed. I assume they meant to drop the “Ah.” here but forgot to do it.
Localizing jokes is fine. But your jokes better fucking make sense.
Right now it’s “Do you think I’d make a goo– Google!” The joke is “Hey, we used a random word that doesn’t really fit, so please lol.” No. That’s fucking terrible. Fuck that shit.
It would sound better as “Do you think I could be a goo– Goomba!” (or “goose” or “goon” or “googly-eyed monster”)
Do you see the difference? The point is for it to make sense so it’s good wordplay. “lol, random” is shit writing.
Visual grade: A
Script grade: C
Overall grade (timing results not factored in): B-
The sheer amount of joke kill here could only be matched by a clown car that got into a traffic accident.
There were some awesome lines, but honestly, Tsumiki’s release had those same lines, but much better. Take the scene where Tsumiki covered headbangs-san in snow and then threw a snowball at her, saying “Coup de grace”. Good writing. Loved it, Commie. But Tsumiki had “And here’s one for the road.” which is better for that scene because it plays on the fact that she just doused her friend in snow already.
When it comes to typesetting, the typesetting here was great. Nearly everything was typeset. But here’s the thing, Tsumiki had EVERYTHING typeset except for one thing in the preview. And their typesetting had better effects. This is by no means a bad release. By many measures, it would be considered a good release. Unfortunately, Tsumiki just outperformed Commie in every possible way here and a lot of Commie’s jokes fucking sucked.
Of the three releases I’ve seen thus far (Hatsuyuki, Commie, Tsumiki), Tsumiki had the best release.