Thursday, December 31, 2015

2015 in Review

Time to look back on 2015. At a personal level, there were quite a few changes: I retired after 50 years in the computer industry and also welcomed a third grandchild. And then there was anime...

Orphan Fansubs

This has been a year of staff changes as well. Orphan lost a wonderful colleague, CP, to illness; other staffers retired due to personal priorities. But the team also welcomed new members, including two Laserdisc collectors, ics- and Erik, who have provided pristine sources for rare OVAs; an encoder, bananadoyouwanna, who has created original encodes when source material is available; and a jack-of-all-trades, Skr, who has been my colleague in several groups.

Projects completed this year:
  • D4 Princess. This short-episode comedy series was no world-beater, but it deserved better than being abandoned three times.
  • Kakyuusei (1995). This soft-core hentai never made it to DVD, and only the first two episodes were ever subtitled in English. Later in the year, we were able to get better raws, ripped directly by ics- from his own laserdisc, and released a second version.
  • Tomoe ga Yuko. The first release based on Erik's collection. This early 90s OVA is a terrific example of the genre and a good watch.
  • Polar Bear Cafe. Orphan's "great white whale," a 50-episode Blu-Ray resub that required extensive typesetting. It remains as funny and sly as it was on first viewing in 2012.
  • Parol no Miraijima. This "orphan" of the Anime Mirai 2014 class is a charming and colorful OVA about innocent creatures confronted with human civilization in all its complexity. In addition to the 720p release based on an Internet raw, bananadoyouwanna encoded a 1080p release from a BDMV. A joint project with M74.
  • Sei Michaela Gakuen Hyouryuuki, version 2. This release was also based on Erik's laserdisc collection.
  • Oz. Yet another release based on Erik's collection. This unjustly neglected sci-fi OVA from the early 90s was one of the best shows I worked on this  year.
  • Hi-Speed Jecy. This orphan rescue featured new encodes directly from Erik's laserdiscs. It's a sci-fi OVA series set in a dark and violent universe and is another good watch.
  • Bavi Stock I and II. Orphan's luck with 80s and 90s OVAs ran out with this pair from the mid 80s. The less said by me, the better.
  • Tokimeki Tonight. The completion of this orphaned 80s comedy series took rather longer than expected, primarily in order to get better raws, but it's good, clean fun.
  • Sanctuary. This 1996 extremely noir OVA was also based on a new encode from Erik's laserdisc collection. It is a "must watch" for any fan of the genre.
So that's eleven projects finished - twelve if you count both versions of Kakyuusei. Not bad!

Work for Other Groups
  •  FFF. I edited Akatsuki no Yona (and its OAD), Juuou Mujin no Fafnir, Shokugeki no Souma, Ore Monogatari, the Hoozuki OADs, Sakurako-san no Ashimoto ni wa Shitai ga Umatteiru, and Noragami Aragato. I QCd the Blu-Ray releases of Dakara Boku wa, H ga Dekinai and Petit Gargantia.
  • FroZen-Evil. I timed and typeset the Miyuki music video. I continued to edit Laughing Salesman and the Yawara! Blu-Rays and to QC Psycho Armor Govarian. I also did some fill-in typesetting. All these projects are on slow-roll.
  • Kiteseekers. I did some fill-in typesetting on Milky Holmes S4 and Eriko.
  • M74. I collaborated with M74 on Parol no Miraijima and High School Agent.
  • Magai. I QC'd several short films for Morellet's group.
  • Kaitou. I edited Young Black Jack.
  • C1. I continued to edit Kakyuusei (1999), which is moving slowly.
  • OddJob. I edited an as-yet-unreleased OVA series.
Akatsuki no Yona was, hands down, the best current series I worked on all year (although I like Noragami quite a lot). I hope for a second season, but I'm not holding my breath. In general, I find current anime uninteresting, but you know that already. Still, I'm usually willing to help other teams out - particularly if I can get some help in return.

Looking Ahead

There's no shortage of raws for unsubbed shows; I think I have more than 30 stashed away at the moment. Translation and translation checking are the greatest bottleneck, as it is for most groups, and then QC. So we'll continue to do a mixture of original translations and resubs, focusing on the obscure, the incomplete, and the neglected.

If you'd like to help, give me a shout. Please note, however, that experience is required.


  1. Hello.
    Just a random query.
    Does Orphan take on requests, particularly obscure/unsubbed ones. I have a 20 minute OVA that I've started to work towards translating but my own knowledge of Japanese isn't enough to carry it on without some sort of help with the translation.

    I'm happy to provide more information.

    Cheers, and happy new year!

    1. Typically not. As it says in the blog, "Translation and translation checking are the greatest bottleneck."

    2. True enough. Indeed they are, as this is the roadblock I've hit.

      Thanks for the response.

  2. If you're interested in subbing other, unsubbed shows, I have a few that I can suggest that need some attention if you like.

    Konnichiwa Anne: Before Green Gables (a group tried to sub this, but only got so far before dropping it entirely)
    Cinnamon The Movie
    Araiguma Rascal
    Ohayo! Spank
    Kupu! Mamegoma
    Lady Lady and its sequel, Hello Lady Lynn

    1. Er.. I have raws, Japanese scripts, and bought the original novel for "Araiguma Rascal". I may even have part of the first episode translated. ;)

      So the other titles listed should probably get more consideration.