For the final release of the decade, here’s another episode of the Lensman TV series. I don’t think anyone will be sad to hear that this is the last appearance of Haynes’ granddaughter Lily. Written by legendary anime scribe Haruya Yamazaki, this episode features an amusement park planet, an alien space pirate disguised as an evil clown, and a Trojan dinosaur. The business with Lily and the space pirates kinda reminds me of the short story “The Ransom of Red Chief” by O. Henry, albeit with a very different ending.
Our partner group in this joint project is the crew from /m/subs, you can check out their site here. Much thanks to sky79 for the translation, starseeker for the translation QC, and MartyMcFlies for final checks. And of course massive thanks to Dougo13 for providing the ultra rare video source, from an old Betamax videocassette recorded for him by a friend in Nagasaki on December 28, 1984. Damn, is that really 35 years and 3 days ago? Time flies when you’re having fun.
Well, the 2010s turned out to be a very interesting decade for English speaking fans of Japanese television. I grew up watching English dubbed anime and tokusastu in the 1970s. I became a hardcore fan in the 1980s, at a time when subtitled material was very scarce and difficult to find. I always wanted to subtitle stuff of my own, but in those days the equipment was very hard to come by.
The 1990s brought a boom in both fan subtitling and the professional licensing of anime on VHS (and later DVD), but it was a boom that largely left fans of older shows in the cold. Apart from Central Anime, Nora Inu “G” and a handful of other groups, some of the best fan subtitling of the decade was actually done by Corn Pone Flicks, not a fan subtitling group at all, but rather a group devoted to amateur film-making, parody dubs, and music videos.
This situation slowly starting turning around in the 2000s, and only kept improving in the 2010s. Old school anime and tokusatsu (and to a lesser degree even J-Drama) suddenly started gaining popularity, with fan subtitlers, offcial licensed DVD/BD releases and of course the legal streaming revolution. If you told me how much anime and toku from 1989 and earlier I would be able to watch with English subtitles by 2019, I would have said: “Wait, I’m still alive in 2019?”