Monday, March 30, 2009

Flashpoint DVD Boxset Out in Two Weeks, Brits!

As we reported earlier, Flashpoint is being released on DVD in the UK - and based on the details given on Amazon UK, we don't think there are going to be any extras - at 520 minutes it looks like it's going to be an episodes-only release. We really love the cover though - especially the slogan "Who's got your back?" The slogan we usually see here in North America is "What would you do" in the CBS promos. To our readers in the UK - we would love to hear confirmation from you if there are any extras included on the DVD! Don't hesitate to send us an email! Pending announcements from CTV and/or CBS about a DVD release in North America, we may purchase a copy in May (these days, being an Otaku almost forces you to have a region-free DVD player because Japanese releases come with more bang for your buck). Some of us on staff are still "old school" and like watching our tv shows on a tv screen rather than our computers or (in some cases) non-existent portable media devices. Alas, CTV seems to have posted the wrong episode description this week on their site. The episode this week will be Aisle 13, which tells the story of a teenage boy who is sad over his best friend moving far away, because of financial difficulties. So, he decides to rob a local food store to give their family some money so they can stay here, but it all goes awry and he takes several people hostage. And for those of you wondering what it's like to write for Flashpoint, we found an old interview from almost a year ago!

Friday, March 27, 2009

North American VA Sightings March 2009 - Part 2!

A few more sightings for you this last Friday in March! Sadly, it looks like Part 3 is going to come sometime in April.

Sug Makes Triumphant Return to Animation!

This is a sighting you have to hear to believe - Stephanie Beard (Rini #2) appeared on a recent episode of Fox's King of the Hill entitled "Uncool Customer". She played Michael Savage, the daughter of a trendy mom, and Bobby's main interest in his Cotillion class. Yes, even we thought that the name Michael was weird for a girl - we wondered if this was a play on Michael Jackson's daughter (Paris Michael Katherine Jackson), but we later learned that it was a play on a conservative radio talk show host. This was a major role, and initially her voice didn't sound anything like the characters she usually voices. This one reminded us of a more refined version of the older Rini she did in SuperS episode "Pegasus Revealed". However, at the end of the episode when Bobby freaked out her character with what he was wearing at her very classy birthday party, her screaming was very much like the Rini we have all come to know and love! The episode would have been that much sweeter had we seen a scene where Nancy Hicks-Gribble called Michael "Sug". Her infamous moniker for anyone and everyone would have had a special meaning with us Sailor Moon fans! This episode is currently being streamed for US viewers at Fox on Demand, however Canwest Global has no episodes of the show online for viewers in Canada. We suggest Canadians check their local listings to see when this episode will be repeated!

Roland Parliament Teaching in New Program in Niagara College!

I told you a really long time ago that Roland Parliament (Melvin, 1st Voice Director) had plans to teach at Niagara College, in the small town of Welland, Ontario (half an hour from Niagara Falls). The College's Acting for Film and Video Program officially launched last Fall, and Roland is just one of many renowned greats teaching students. Others on staff include Second City alumnus Robin McCulloch, singer Barbara Mantini, and Ving Tsun Kung Fu Master Sifu Chris Hader. Roland has always had a special passion for teaching acting, and I have had the privilege to attend one of his sessions in 2004. He has a wealth of experience in the entertainment industry and has a very dynamic way of sharing these in a form that students can learn from and expand their acting horizons. ACTRA has even sent him around to different parts of Canada to teach workshops. For more information on the program, click here!

Linda Ballantyne is a Parrot!

Linda Ballantyne (Sailor Moon #3) has a new cartoon role - as a feathered friend! She plays Tulip the Parrot in the National Geographic Kids Entertainment cartoon, Toot & Puddle. This show is named for two pigs, who are best friend. Toot likes to travel the world and learn about different cultures, and send a postcard to Puddle who likes to stay at home. Tulip, is their pet. This cartoon is based on the popular book series by author Holly Hobbie. The show currently airs on Treehouse (Canada) and Noggin (USA).

Robert Tinkler Can Be Heard Soon in A New Cartoon and Video Game!

Currently in production is Kung Fu Magoo - an updated version of Mr. Magoo featuring the bumbling character and his 12-year-old nephew Justin, as they "dodge giant robotic spiders, ninjas on jet skis and the mutant 'Beasteens,' which are half animal and half teenage girl, all before the Evil-lympics even begin". This is definitely a lot different than the Mr. Magoo we all grew up watching! You know your old when..... tangents aside, Robert Tinkler (Rubeus, Pupuran) can be heard as various characters in the series. The show also stars Olsen Twins successors Cole and Dylan Sprouse. Robert will also have various roles in the upcoming Marvel Ultimate Alliance 2: Fusion video game. Once again, Marvel heroes unite to save New York City from Latveria and Lucia Von Bardas.

More coming soon - we've saved the best for last!

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Shokotan + Shibby = ♥ ?

Two stars we have covered on this blog made the Japanese tabloids a few weeks ago when it was rumored that they might be dating! The infamous idol, popstar, cosplay enthusiast, and recent mangaka, Shoko "Shokotan" Nakagawa and Jyoji Shibue (Tuxedo Mask in PGSM) were recently caught by the tabloids having dinner in a tavern in Shibuya. The two were chatting away and having a great time, without a clue that they were spotted by someone who snapped them together (pictured). Another website had posted an article alleging that the two were dating, and that their date did not end after dinner. Shoko took offense to this, and posted a retort on her blog , saying that she didn't understand why going out to dinner with a friend was such a headline. Shibby's blog is pretty boring and featured no retort whatsoever. This is the first we have ever heard of these two being friends, and we hope that in light of this tabloid hiccup, they can continue to be friends. Shoko is after all, a big fan of Kamen Rider, of which Shibby had a leading role in one of the latest series. Of course though, we had to leaf through a few entries for Sailor Sightings! Here is a snack she is getting ready to enjoy (berries and condensed milk) in some anime-themed snack bowls she found, here she is with Ayana Tsubaki buying manga (look what Ayana is holding!), and here she is in formal dress, holding a Chibi-Usa plushie. She cracks a joke that dressing up and wearing makeup again after a long time isn't like "Jupiter Power"!

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Hello Magazine Canada Gets It Right!

As you all probably know I am a big Spice Girls fan, and this month's Hello Magazine Canada had a feature about Sporty Spice and her "beautiful baby girl" - so of course, I had to pick it up! But elsewhere in the magazine, I stumbled upon a hidden gem! The magazine included a brief review of Emilie-Claire Barlow's latest album and in the first sentence, wrote words to please any Sailor Moon fan! Click the image for full size! Our review will be posted soon!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Sightings in Fan Land

Hey Moonies, it's been a while, but The Me is back with some fun tidbits for you. We came across these gems in various corners of the internet.

First up, a custom bedroom in Morrowind:

This would definitely be a fun room to have in any game, or even out here in the real world.

Next is an interesting crossover:

In case you can't identify her at first glace, that is Hatsune Miku, dressed up as Super Sailor Moon and yes, her Moon Kaleidoscope is actually a leek. And if her name still doesn't ring any bells, she was the first release from Crypton using Yamaha's Vocaloid2 singing synthesis software. Which explains her musical note motif and the 01 on her brooch. The significance of the leek is a much longer, non-Sailor Moon related story, but if you come ask me on the forums, I might just tell it to you!

But, the fun with the Vocaloids isn't quite done yet. Last up is another Vocaloid, Kagamine Rin, singing and starring in the Sailor Moon OP: Moonlight Densetsu!

Rin's twin brother Len is consigned to play Luna, and Miku and an older Vocaloid1 character, Meiko play Ami and Rei.

Whatever you do, though, do NOT watch the version of Miku singing Moonlight Densetsu that shows up under the related videos. While Rin's rendition is very good and a nice example of the music you can make with the Vocaloid software, it is much, much easier to make things that are not so nice. Don't take that as a slight against Miku, though. In capable hands, she is a very good singer.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Forums are Down...

Hi Moonies - we are all experiencing difficulties in loading the forums and we think this is due to some error in some new features which were installed this week by FreeForums. So if you are having troubles, it's not your computer! And sadly we can't do anything to fix it on our end either :(. We apologize for the inconvenience and we hope it's resolved soon!

Edit: The server DNS issues appear to be resolved, however if you are still having problems please send us an email and we'll forward it to our support contacts. The system was restored as of 1:30 AM EST this morning.

Flashpoint Continues Cutting Edge Presentation

Hey Moonies - Flashpoint isn't on today, but that doesn't mean we can't bring you news about it!

Flashpoint to be Broadcast Online in HD

CTV announced yesterday that a new beta player was being launched online, and that three of their top shows, Flashpoint, Corner Gas, and Malawi's Song were going to be the first shows in Canada to be offered online in HD! This also makes CTV the first network in Canada to stream HD content online! The player uses a combination of technology: Akamai's Adaptive Edge, Microsoft Silverlight, and Microsoft Internet Information Server (IIS) 7.0 Smooth Streaming Technology. It promises instant startup time and no buffering (then again, this is the internet and we expect there to be some buffering at the very least). We checked it out and we were impressed! It really seems like Canada is leading the US when it comes to the distribution of this series. Canada can access the show's previous and current seasons on iTunes, and in standard and high definition on CTV's website, as well as on television. CBS has not put the show up on iTunes, but the show is available on their network in SD & HD, and in SD on their site. Still no word on a North American DVD release, but we are working hard behind the scenes to get a copy of the UK release soon after it is out.

Do Not Buy This Boxset... Flashpoint Edition!

Speaking of DVDs, a pirated boxset has hit the internet. Please don't buy it! The DVDs are region free, which in the legit DVD world always rings alarm bells for not being official. We don't even think that's the official cover, it looks just like a screencap of a promotional picture we've seen kicking around CTV (when you load their official page, this image is a placeholder for whatever video is they have featured). It also features a monochrome CBS DVD logo, but the CBS store does not have a Flashpoint boxset listed anywhere! We haven't seen this boxset appear at any reputable online sellers - but should any of our fans see it, please email us with where you saw it and we will take action and get a letter campaign started (we've been here before)to get this set pulled in favor of an official release.

And to Catch Up on Ratings...

Canada's ratings for last week's episode have just been released - the show scored 1.350 million viewers and was the 16th most watched show in the country that week!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

More on the Whereabouts of Optimum Productions

Since our last article over a year ago, we have occasionally spent some time poking and prodding around the internet to see whatever became of the Canadian companies involved with Sailor Moon. Now that Pretty Cure has hit the Canadian airwaves, hopefully to conquer Sailor Moon's former glory, we thought it was about time that we reported our findings.

Optimum Productions is still around. According to an NATPE brochure from 2008, the company had a few dubbing productions in the works - the cartoon Jibber Jabber, Top Gear (we're pretty sure that they handled editing it for time in other markets and/or international language dubbing), the hit Belgian Drama Matrioshki, and Canadian Geographic Presents. Louis Hurtubise (Producer throughout the series' run) also has a profile on popular indie voiceover site, Voice123. Nicole Thuault (Associate Producer, Director, and Casting) was a little harder to track down, however we were able to find out something interesting from her past. She was the director of the French dub of some major Hollywood films in association with Quebec studios Voice Heart and Cinélume. These were My Life So Far with Colin Firth, Norman Jewison's Dance Me Outside, and Pushing Tin. These are listed on Optimum Productions' website, but OP is not given credit on the official site for dubbing in Quebec... things that make you go hmmm... We still don't know what is going on with her Firmin Productions.

Another company which had a very big role in the distribution of the first two seasons of Sailor Moon in Canada was Kaleidoscope Entertainment. This company is also still around - we were able to find an old news release about their involvement in the production of Bathroom Divas on Bravo.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

A Random Interlude

Hey Moonies, while we work out the technical issues we're having with the commercial post, we've got a couple treats that we stumbled upon.

First we have a clip from the variety show SMAPxSMAP. We've featured clips from them before as they sometimes have English speaking celebrities and musical guests visit. This time though, they've done a Dark Knight parody, featuring a rather docile Joker running into a very angry man!

SMAPxSMAP Dark Knight Joker Parody -
Seeing the Joker on his knees, apologizing is just hilarious!

And for another cultural crossover, we have the Japanese group Shonen Knife singing their version of Top of the World by the Carpenters on a recent episode of Music Japan. This particular cover was featured on the 1994 album "If I were a Carpenter" as one of three International groups lending their style to the Carpenters' songs.

Shonen Knife - Top of the World - The Carpenters -


Monday, March 16, 2009

Flashpoint Ratings News!

Before we hit the ratings, we'll link you to an interesting article we found - One of Flashpoint's writers, Tassie Cameron is pitching a new cop series to US networks entitled Copper. The article goes on to say what a pioneer Flashpoint was for Canadian television across the border, since the economic crisis is pushing US networks to pursue alternative productions.

Canada's ratings for the episode "The Fortress" (which was the week before last Friday), scored 1.367 million viewers, and was the 14th most watched show in the country that week! US Ratings for the episode which aired just a few days ago, "Clean Hands", scored 9.44 million viewers, and earned a score of 1.9/6 for the adults 18-49 demographic. This 1.9 score sent off alarm bells with some critics, saying that the show probably won't survive, but it's been teetering between 1.9 and 2.0 the last few weeks. And it is still winning it's timeslot, despite only retaining 85% of the viewers from the preceding show, The Ghost Whisperer. Some other outlets are reporting bigger figures. Dollhouse rose in viewers to 4.42 million, with a score of 1.5/5 in the demographic. However if the previews are to be trusted, next week's episode will be a real kicker, and may be the spark that attracts more viewers. Flashpoint is on a hiatus for the next two weeks , and maybe if we are lucky we can catch up on some summaries - I'll at least be lost without Flashpoint for this time!

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Let's Try to Get Sailor Moon in Space!

Hey Moonies - I just got this sighting in from one of our loyal readers, Senshi-Chan! NASA is looking for a name for Node 3, the latest addition to the International Space Station. Node 3 will contain many new technologies specifically for Environmental Control and Life Support Systems. Fans can check out more details here. Voting ends in 5 days, but NASA is taking the public's opinion in picking a name - we suggest voting for Serenity as it is probably too late to suggest Sailor Moon and muster up enough votes for it to be a significant contender (but fans are welcome to try)! Plus, Serenity is a pretty big name in Sailor Moon! So fans please go and vote Serenity for Node 3!

EDIT: Here's a report on how Stephen Colbert is winning!

Commercials Delayed, Indefinitely.

Hi Moonies, we had planned to bring you a lot of commercials this weekend, but unfortunately our video host imeem, flaked out. Last night we spent two hours uploading commercials, and only ten of them made it to the site. This morning, we got a message saying we had too many (even though after hours of scouring through the site, there was no mention of a limit anywhere). So then we tried to make another account, and again, after hours of uploading which finished only just over an hour ago, only ten made it. A few minutes of searching on the web later, we learned imeem changed their policies in January, and didn't bother to notify their users about it. For the timebeing, we will be holding these commercials (and any others that we find) until we find a new host. We are not abandoning imeem completely - we will likely leave our VA clips and our other, non commercial clips up there. Our old ones will remain there until we find a more lasting solution. We are sorry to have to break this to you - we had a really big post planned, but unfortunately things were just not in our favor. If any of our fans have any suggestions, please let us know in our forums!

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Pretty Cure Comparisons To Be Posted On Forums From Now On!

Hey Moonies - I wrote up episode 2 last night and posted it just minutes ago! Click here to check it out. I will post them on the forums now since I am not sure if I will be able to keep up with it, and I want to (hopefully) get some more discussion between the fans. Go head over to the new forums!

Quickie Convention Announcement

Keiko Han (Luna in both the anime and PGSM) along with a chief producer and planner on the anime, Yasuo Yamaguchi, are going to appear at this year's Animazement from May 22-24! If any of our readers are planning to attend this convention we would love to hear from you! Keiko Han currently plays a narrator on a series on the air as we speak in Japan, Tytania. Yasuo is a huge veteran and pioneer with Toei Animation, and for more information please check out this article at the Northern Illinois Anime Culture Club, and this older interview Anime Dream.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Happy Friday Moonies!

And what do we have here? We finally set up forums for this site after what seemed like an eternity! Happy belated 2nd anniversary, Moonies! Just make sure to follow the rules ok?

And, we have decided just for our readers in the United States who are DYING to see the Pretty Cure dub, to upload a selection of clips for One Week Only on YouTube. We recognize these clips are copyright The Ocean Group, YTV, and Toei, however we are only putting these clips up for preview purposes. We will remove them on Friday, March 19th.

Opening Credits!
First Henshin!
End of the Episode!

Canadian Otaku, don't forget to catch the show today and/or Saturday - it marks the debut of Will Wood's (a VA who commented on our site earlier this week) character, Ferguson!

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Emilie-Claire Barlow's New Album Drops!

Emilie-Claire Barlow (Sailor Mars #2, Sailor Venus #2) just released her new album on Tuesday, Haven't We Met! We hope to be able to find her CD at a store nearby and post a review of it shortly. Last year was a big year for Emilie-Claire as she was nominated for a few awards in Canada - one for a Gemini "Best Performance or Host in a Variety Program or Series", a Juno for "Vocal Jazz Album Of The Year", and a National Jazz Award for "Female Vocalist Of The Year" - which she won! This album features jazz hits in English, French, and Portuguese, many complete with Emilie-Claire's signature scat singing, which has been coined "Emiliese"! We look forward to hearing You Must Believe in Spring - probably a song every Canadian needs to listen to after surviving this cruel and brutal winter! Emilie-Claire will be performing concerts all over Canada over the next two months, click here for tour dates and ticket information!

Emilie-Claire is also a rising jazz star in Japan, having performed at many prestigious jazz clubs there over the last few years. Her new album is being released simultaneously over there and she has been featured in a few news articles. Sankei MSN reports that Emilie-Claire has a hard-core fan-base in Japan, and that this new album is her "best workmanship yet" with her strong selection of tunes and arrangements! Yahoo Japan posts that this was a long-awaited album in Japan, as she received standing ovations at all three of her performances at the Ginza International Jazz Festival last November! The reviewer also remarks that her production and arrangements shine from her bossa novas to her strings. This is an album which features her high speed scat-singing, and her charming voice is lovely enough to heal the mind without reserve. He later recommends this album for anyone who wants to listen to some great jazz lounge music. Congratulations to Emilie-Claire on achieving success in Japan with her jazz music and also for being who we believe is the first person involved with the English adaptation of Sailor Moon to have a fanbase in Japan!

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

North American VA Sightings March 2009 - Part 1!

Vampires, Kiddie Music, VAs Reuniting on a Daring New Cartoon, and A Dash of Sugar!

Hey Moonies! I have a feeling this is going to have to be broken into at least 2 parts, but we have EXCLUSIVE BREAKING NEWS that I just couldn’t wait to share with you all. So far this week is shaping up to be pretty big - yesterday we heard from one of the voice actors on Pretty Cure, Will Wood, today, we heard from someone we haven’t heard from in a really long time... who knows what else this week will bring? We on staff can’t remember the last time we’ve had so many consecutive exciting events happen on this site! By the way, our favicon was replaced with something else last night - what do you guys think? Our old one was craptacular, and our old host disappeared off the web so I had to create a new one.

Alice Blue Screening All Around North America!

We’re really happy that a movie that’s been followed since the SOS days is finally moving up in the cinema circuit. Vampire flick The Death of Alice Blue (Part I - The Bloodsucking Vampires of Advertising) is going to be screened at film festivals all over North America in the next few months! This film features Katie Griffin (Sailor Mars #1) and Barbara Radecki (Sailor Neptune, Serena’s Mom) in the supporting roles of Katie and Sherry respectively. There are also songs featured in the film from Katie’s indie rockstar husband, Michael Kulas! The film will be screened at The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in New York to screen as part of CANADA FRONT: NEW FILMS showcase on March 20th and March 22nd , The Kent Film Festival in Kent, Connecticut on March 28th, The Atlanta Film Festival in Atlanta, Georgia sometime between April 16th and 25th, and WorldFest Houston in Houston, Texas sometime between April 17th and 26th. For more information, check out the official website and group on Facebook! Best of luck to the film at all of these festivals!

Jen Gould’s Music Soup Continues to Warm!

Jen Gould (Sailor Saturn) has a career that is completely the opposite of her character in Sailor Moon - she is a children’s entertainer, and released a CD last year entitled Music Soup. The CD won a Juno for Best Children’s Album in 2008 and she has performed many concerts in the Toronto area. More recently, one of our readers Amanda P. learned of an appearance at a children’s Purim party at Leo Baeck Day School on February 22nd! We listened to a few samples of her songs and we have to say, they are definitely creative and would be a hit to any children under the age of 7! You guys can check out videos of her performing on YouTube here, here, here, here and here!


This afternoon we heard from none other than Stephanie Beard (Rini #2) and we can confirm the rumors are true! Stephanie appears in a non-speaking role in Adam Sandler’s latest movie, Funny People. She revealed to us exclusively: "It's true!!! i don't have any lines, but you can catch me sitting beside Adam Sandler in the Thanksgiving dinner scene!!" The film will be released on July 12th, 2009, and we will definitely try to see it as soon as it is out to spot Sug, and we hope that our readers will too! She isn’t sure if the scene was kept, and tells us “but i do know this; it was so exciting to be on set with such amazing comedians!!” We only hope Sug will continue to conquer Hollywood - we can only surmise what is going to come next!

And for last, we have to hide this next sighting behind the jump. Four VAs are reuniting for a new cartoon that is definitely for older readers only!

The Dating Guy to Premiere Soon on Teletoon’s Detour!

Emilie-Claire Barlow (Sailor Mars #2, Sailor Venus #2), Julie Lemieux (Sammy, Young Darien, Peruru), Kathleen Laskey (Birdie) and Jill Frappier (Luna) are all playing various roles in a new Canadian Adult Comedy called The Dating Guy , all about 4 guys and their conquests for women. Yes, this show is about those scuzzy guys you find at the bar every weekend looking to score a one night stand! Each episode promises to take the viewers through an extreme aspect of the twenty-something dating scene. The show also plans to have an interactive aspect to it, with a play on social networking on their website called "Blackbook". This sounds very exciting and we’re looking forward to hearing all of our VAs on this show to see what their characters are like! It’s not common to see them doing shows aimed for adults! The show will premiere later this year on Teletoon's Detour block.

Monday, March 09, 2009

BREAKING NEWS: Flashpoint Set Plays Host to Important Government Announcement, and Other News Tidbits!

I have to post a quickie Flashpoint update since something major was announced today.

Canadian Government to Attempt to Fix Canadian Television Fund

Most TV production in Canada receives funding from the Canadian Television Fund , which is supported by contributions from the Canadian Government (through the Department of Canadian Heritage) and many Canadian Cable and Satellite providers. In the last few years, the fund has undergone many changes in how it is supported by its supporters, especially since many supporters pulled out or reduced their funds by a significant amount. This compounded with the rise of "new media" over the internet and mobile devices, has sent the distribution of these funds into a tizzy, leaving many in the TV industry frustrated. The Canadian New Media Fund, which was created for this purpose, also suffered from lack of Governmental support. Today, Heritage Minister James Moore held a press conference from the set of Flashpoint announcing the merger of the two funds to create the Canadian Media Fund which will come to fruition in 2010 (Image Credit: CTV). Applicants will be required to make their content available on two platforms. While we are happy to read that the Government is attempting to reorganize their TV industry funding , we were a little confused about what developers who only work on either conventional programming or new media would have to do to get funding under these new requirements. Brian Anthony of the Director's Guild of Canada also shared his sentiments on the same thoughts exactly. And the Canadian Actor's Union, ACTRA, has a few words to say too, since 5 of the 7 members of this new board are comprised of representatives from the "Big Cable" industries. In recent years, we've noticed there has been a rise of many independent productions in Canada, especially animated ones which are almost web-exclusive. It would be a sad day to see these productions struggle to get funding, as well as having to really fight to get funding from a board more balanced towards bigger companies. While we were happy to read that they chose to make this announcement from the set of one of Canada's biggest TV successes of recent years, we can't help but worry about how exactly this consolidated fund is going to work. Readers who want to check out videos from the press conference (and take a guess exactly where in Toronto the set is!) can go to CTV and watch them on their media player.

☽ And Zap2It has some really cool pictures of the cast of Flashpoint and Numb3rs on an on-set weapons training visit!
Enrico Colantoni and Hugh Dillon traveled to Burbank to use a Firearms Training Simulator.

☽ And we have ratings to report: io9 posted an interesting article and poll asking the question "Is there too much to watch on Friday Nights?" I at least had that problem between three shows this week. Flashpoint, Dollhouse, and I also really wanted to catch 20/20 since they were going to feature the farewell performance of Siegfried and Roy. I'm still amazed at how Roy Horn has recovered from his injury, and also amazed at his strength. I ended up watching Flashpoint, and recording the other two shows. Did any of our readers also have this dilemma? In any case, I have lost all faith in Dollhouse. This time I really felt that the banter read right out of a script from Buffy, and that Sierra's part in the episode was just there for a token appearance. Most TV critics are predicting it won't last past these 13 episodes, and I am siding with them. I don't think it's a threat to Flashpoint anymore. Flashpoint had one of the most suspenseful and gripping episodes in its run last week, and I thought the lines of the nanny were brilliantly written and the child stars were superb (we bet they thought it was cool to see all the behind the scenes action and effects)! The other really cool thing about this episode is that the viewers who have been following this show now have a really good idea where each character comes from and they can almost feel their thoughts in their head when they don't have anything to say. You could feel Sam Braddock's heartbreak when Donna walked in, and you could feel Greg Parker remembering what it was like to be there for his son when he gave Daniel a reassuring hug after his captor had been shot. Stephanie Morgenstern and Mark Ellis in one of their beginning promotional interviews said that this wasn't your typical cop show - and every week they live up to it! Anyway, enough gushing about the episode, we were so happy to read this week Flashpoint creamed Dollhouse in the United States! Flashpoint scored 9.8 million viewers and a 2.0/6.0 score with the 18-49 demographic, whereas Dollhouse scored only 3.50 million viewers and a 1.5/5.0 with the same demographic. 20/20 had the same score in the demographic but only had 8.40 million viewers. Flashpoint definitely won the timeslot and CBS won the night! Next week's episode features Sam Braddock in a hostage situation - we can't wait!

Sunday, March 08, 2009

Our Moon is Still Rising, Two Years Later!

Today marks the 2nd anniversary of Moon Chase! We’d like to thank all our fans for their support, even when times have been tough and we haven’t been able to update as often as we would like to. To all the sites in the last year who have linked us - thank you! We’d love to add you to our sidebar too so please let us know who you are! We’re just about at 65,000 hits! This week, we’ll hopefully have a couple surprises for you the return of commercials (and oh boy are there a lot), and a special surprise we’ve been promising for a really long time is finally going to be added to this site! Thanks again for your support and watch this space!

Saturday, March 07, 2009

Pretty Cure - First Dubbed Episode Review!

Three Cheers for Toei For Getting Everything Right!

I did a rough review this morning, running a subtitled episode against the dubbed episode on my television (not an easy thing to do!) and it's posted after the jump.

All in all, there were less edits made in this first episode compared to the edits in the first episode of Sailor Moon. One of the hallmarks of Sailor Moon was the background music which was changed in entirety just for the English dub - the original music was all kept for Pretty Cure, and it sounds a lot clearer when compared to the DVD releases of Sailor Moon. From what we have learned, Toei is handling this series instead of 4Kids, much to the relief of fans everywhere! It seems though that promotion is running a little behind for the series. YTV hasn’t featured it in any newsletters in the last few weeks, and promotioanl pieces just started to hit the industry mags yesterday. The show wasn’t even promoted by its parent company in their March Highlights! So Canada, let’s try to be a lot more supportive with this effort from Toei and watch the show when you can okay? The quality of this dub will probably even satisfy you hardcore Pretty Cure fans! Toei has put subtitled episodes of the show for free viewing on Crunchyroll.

The new voices aren’t as cutesy as they are in the Japanese version, but they work! Barely any difference between the original and this one in terms of scripts. Opening titles changed slightly, and we love the girly punk theme song! They even used similar lyrics in some places to the original theme. Episode title screens still the same and the translation is close. They have kept the Junior High School Names the same. Looks like they have kept all the original music and it’s been mastered pretty well. Names have been changed into English, but that was expected. Hannah’s crush plays for the baseball team (instead of a kendo team in the original). They have certainly done a good job of adapting this to school life in the western world while still retaining most of the original’s lines. They made one change during the conversation on the train - in the original, one of the friends says that Hokona/Hannah and Nagisa/Natalie would work well together because Nagisa is popular with boys and Hokona is popular with girls. In the dub, she says that it’s “the best of both worlds” since Hannah is good at school and Natalie is good at sports. Playing it safe there, eh Toei? Again, an edit we understand completely (though we are kinda reminded slightly of the issues with Haruka and Michiru). Hannah’s dog is named Chuutaro! Another slight change in the scene where Natalie’s mom asks her brother to go check on her. In the original, there is a lot of noise and her mom asks him to go check up on her. In this one, she asks him to go up to tell her dinner will be late tonight. The writers got rid of Mepple’s end-sentence trademark “Mepo”! Pissard’s name is Pichard now. Somehow I can just picture Roland Parliament’s voice as being perfect for Mepple if he toned up his Melvin just a little! Fans will be happy to know that the henshin hasn’t been digitally altered in any way! And they have kept the whole Emissary speech... this is bringing back fond memories of Sailor Moon for me and probably will for the rest of us watching this show. Our monster of the day’s name isn’t that decipherable? Hakenna? It sure doesn’t sound like Zakenna. The voice is all warped. The name of the attack has been changed from “Pretty Cure Marble Screw” to “Pretty Cure Marble Twister”. “Mipo” is gone too. The credit screens are different than the Japanese. I don’t recognize any names in the credits with respect to Sailor Moon. The Ocean Group has produced this dub, and it is being recorded at Blue Water Studios in Calgary Alberta. The show is also only airing one episode a week (twice on Fridays, once on Saturdays). The episode previews have also been kept, and it’s nice to see the Toei Animation Cat at the end of the episode.

Friday, March 06, 2009

Flashpoint News Roundup!

Who caught tonight's episode? What a twist and a sad ending :(. I quite enjoyed the banter between the SRU in the workout room in the beginning! Leave us your thoughts below!

Flashpoint Nominated for More Awards

Unfortunately, the show didn't win the award it was nominated for at the CFTPA Indie Awards (Season 2 of Intelligence won). Sarah Gadon, who played Tasha in the episode Attention Shoppers, was nominated for an ACTRA Toronto award, but unfortunately didn't win either (we really loved her performance in it too :(). On a side note, Robert Tinkler (Rubeus, Pupuran) was also nominated for his voice work on Cyberchase (and also didn't win). Flashpoint however it has other award noms on the horizon! Two episodes have been nominated for the Writers Guild of Canada's Screenwriters Awards! And they are: Tracey Forbes for Attention Shoppers and Adam Barken for Who's George?. The show is against episodes from ReGenesis and Murdoch Mysteries. The Awards will be held on Monday, April 20th - we wish Flashpoint the best of luck!

IGN Posts Interview with Enrico Colantoni

We're just going to link you to this one with a warning that Enrico Colantoni uses some nasty words in this interview that are censored. We recommend all our readers who are old enough to read this check it out - he gives out a lot of hints about the new season and also what it's like behind the scenes. He talks about how he feels a certain kinship to the show since his brother was a cop. At the end of the interview he makes special note about how the show is "allowed to be in Toronto" and how relieved the crew is to not have to hide certain things that are "Canadian", and how the show has been able to adapt and become a city that could be anywhere in the world. We especially like how there has been such a variety in the different cultures of the characters on the show.

And Finally, Last Week's Canadian Ratings...

We are so elated to read on BBM that Flashpoint has risen! The show went up from having 910K viewers the week before to having 1.339 viewers last week - rising from the 24th most watched program to the 12th most watched program in Canada! We can all breathe again and hopefully the show will rise even more! Keep watching the show, Canadian fans!

Holy Moon Craters, Pretty Cure Starts on YTV Today!

... And I'm watching it right now - it's always a bad sign when you think you're too late to notice these things! I was going through my onscreen guide to get to the weather channel and noticed it, and coincidentally I was planning to write up something on Pretty Cure's success in comparison to Sailor Moon this weekend. The series has a 6th season in the works and most news articles are pointing out the fact that it is as successful (if not more?) than Sailor Moon. Turns out today was, in fact, the North American Television Premiere! Don't worry, it will re-air in a few hours on YTV! So far I'm impressed (though I missed the first ten minutes), and there are a lot of similarities to Sailor Moon! Oh wow, episode previews - guess they had to make the episode longer somehow (who here remembers Sailor Says?). . . Anyway, I think Canadian fans should give this series a chance - it's a Toei Series and they are going through Ocean Studios over Optimum Productions, and it's also a magical girl series. If we keep up the ratings, hopefully that will give Toei some faith that there's still a market for magical girl anime on TV.

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Why Didn't Sailor Moon Get A Theme Park?

I swiped this magazine from an office years ago, and thought to save it for otaku information later on. Since this is a hectic week and we are once again in a "filler episode phase", I figured, why not post it?

In 2005, Aichi Prefecture, Nagoya, Japan, played host to the 2005 Expo. The Expo is one of the biggest events aimed at bringing the world together through exhibitions. That year's theme was "Nature's Wisdom" which meant pavilion themes had to have something to do with the wonders of nature, and eco-friendliness. And there were some cute critters for mascots, Kiccoro and Morizo. Moon Chase favorite Ayumi Hamasaki performed an orchestral version of A Song is Born at the opening ceremonies. However, one thing that has remained constant and popular for several years, just HAD to be featured. A special Pokemon-themed park was built just for the Expo, and the magazine had a small feature on it, including a picture of a Pikachu themed ride. Is there any facet of the entertainment industry the Pokemon have not made an attempt to conquer? We wondered what the theme park might have been like if it was Sailor Moon themed. What rides and attractions would you have liked to see? Share your ideas in the comments! We've scanned the feature for you below.

Monday, March 02, 2009

Flashpoint Ratings Febraury 27th, 2009

Hi Moonies: We're going to hold off on our summaries of the episodes until further notice. They will be done, just when is hard to say, we are doing a little restructuring behind the scenes. Nonetheless, we will keep you posted on the ratings since Flashpoint is in a bit of a bind on both sides of the border!

First off - it was announced last week that CTV , Flashpoint's parent network in Canada and initial supporter, is projecting a loss of 100 million CAD in "conventional television" due to the worldwide economic crisis, along with changes in television and how the internet has influenced media content. CTV has also written off 1.7 billion CAD in television operations from the last quarter. The network also suspended Canadian Idol just for 2009. We are worried that Flashpoint may have to pull in successful numbers consistently if the show were to be considered for a third season - it will need to prove it will be a good investment. And the ratings in Canada have been declining slowly. On the 13th of February, when the last episode of Season 1 Between Heartbeats aired, the show had 1.292 million viewers - a significant cry from the 1.7 million viewer peak two episodes earlier. So Canadian Moonies - please try to watch this show on Friday night (who wants to go out in the cold anyway?) and encourage anyone else you know to give this show a try!

Now, onto last week's episode, Business as Usual. Canadian ratings won't be posted for a few more days, however the US ratings were published just hours after the show aired. Flashpoint kinda won and didn't win it's timeslot. It had more viewers than Joss Whedon's Dollhouse with 9.17 million viewers (to 4.13 million) however, Dollhouse scored a 2.0/7.0 score with the 18-49 demographic, and Flashpoint was kept away from the top only scoring 1.9/7.0. As far as the shows went, Flashpoint came back with a bang with a story about how the current economic crisis and corporate greed affects everyone, however I thought the scenes with the new character, Donna Sabine (at least we think that's her last name) were a little rushed. Maybe the vagueness of her persona will be clarified as the show goes on, and it was there to add to the mystery of her psychological problems which were hinted at. I really liked the mock stock exchange they had built in MaRS though, and it was nice to see Amy Jo Johnson, even if it was only for a few minutes (she will be back, right?). Dollhouse on the other hand, stuck to one plot for the entire episode's duration, however at times it seemed to drag on and on. I didn't quite believe Eliza Dushku's singing was as great as the show made it out to be, or the Diva's behaviour seemed overdone at times. I also thought some elements for the plot for this episode was drawn from an episode of Eliza's other show Tru Calling, many years ago. I also don't think Friday night is necessarily the greatest night for both of these shows. The good news is that these two shows are the top two in the timeslot, and it will be interesting to see in the coming weeks how this plays out.