1. We have moved to a new forum system. All your posts and data should have transferred over. Welcome, to the new Serebii Forums. Details here
    Dismiss Notice
  2. Be sure to join the discussion on our discord at: Discord.gg/serebii
    Dismiss Notice
  3. If you're still waiting for the e-mail, be sure to check your junk/spam e-mail folders
    Dismiss Notice

Why does the dub use only some of the Japanese music?

Discussion in 'Pokémon Animé Discussion' started by matt0044, Dec 15, 2018.

  1. matt0044

    matt0044 Well-Known Member

    I actually don't mind a dub score per say since I've heard many that are actually pretty good like Digimon (largely with Tamers and onwards) or LBX and 4kids wasn't too shabby with a lot of their own BGM even if it barely holds a candle to Shinji Miyazaki's score. TPCi even had a few decent pieces even when they seemed a bit... all over the place about it.

    That being said, it often felt like they wanted to use the Japanese soundtrack rather than their own or the original producers insisted that they wanted it brought over but things like composer fees and overall royalties got in the way. Seems like they've wanted to meet it halfway but... how come?
  2. TheWanderingMist

    TheWanderingMist Daikuro, Keeper Of The Gates Ambitious

    Money money money money money
    Alola Adventurer and Dragalge like this.
  3. matt0044

    matt0044 Well-Known Member

    Then why not insist on a dub exclusive soundtrack if the original is pricey? I'd be fine with it so long as it was consistent and, well, composed decency like with Digimon.
  4. Prof. SALTY

    Prof. SALTY The Scruffy Professor

    Uuuuuuhhhhh pardon...? Digimon's dub soundtrack is... Chaotic to say the least.

    It may be cheaper to license certain songs than it is to write new ones. Not all music is the same price.
  5. Lord Starfish

    Lord Starfish Fond of owls

    If I were to make a guess, they probably have some contractual obligation to keep at least some of the original music. That's the only explanation I can think of for why they'll consistently keep, like, one track per episode, two or three at most.

    Also since Digimon's music came up, composition-wise that stuff wasn't bad at all, but it was not very well utilized. Also the fact that it was in a Saban show rather hurt its identity as you could hear the exact same music in about a dozen other shows too. Seriously, I distinctly remember there being this very commonly used battle theme in the Digimon dub that, even as a kid, I noticed playing in several other shows airing on Fox Kids at the time, and my sister swears she remembers hearing the actual Digimon theme in UBOS (A very blatant Harry Potter ripoff that I'm not sure anyone else even remembers).
  6. Apslup

    Apslup Boss of the Team Bucciarati

    No clue. However, apparently the Dub for Movie 21 uses the Japanese Soundtrack in its entirety, so that's a good sign of things to come (but yeah I think it just comes down to royalties really).
  7. Lord Starfish

    Lord Starfish Fond of owls

    This is correct... unless you count the theme song, as that was replaced, but the entire instrumental score was kept for M21.
  8. Apslup

    Apslup Boss of the Team Bucciarati

    Ah right that's cool. I understand changing the theme song. If the actual anime dub can keep the Japanese Soundtrack that will be cool. It will be even cooler if they include English covers of the Japanese Opening and Ending Songs since they are miles better than the songs the dub puts out (especially the endings, which for the longest time has just been some mediocre instrumental).
  9. matt0044

    matt0044 Well-Known Member

    Well, not always but the music used was generally fairly well done (recycled from others shows or not) and could be quite effective when matched with the right scenes. This is compared to what 4kids tended to do in my honest opinion.
  10. matt0044

    matt0044 Well-Known Member

    Didn't TPCi keep Watashi Makenai for May's first episode in Diamond & Pearl but without the vocals? Seriously, that was literally the first that's every happened for their run of the dub.
  11. DatsRight

    DatsRight Well-Known Member

    This is what I consider the most likely scenario. Most dubs that don't want to bother using the original music just don't pay for that benefit and make a completely new soundtrack. The Pokemon dub however is a strange case where they seemingly bought the rights to use the original soundtrack but only desire to use the bare minimum.

    I'm guessing they either know to use at least a handful of the most noteworthy tracks to keep some fan appeal (especially since usually the same handful of tracks are kept in every episode per series) or maybe the soundtrack was just something that came with the contract and the higher ups insist the composers at least make SOME minimal use of the music they had to pay extra for.

    I know several composers don't appreciate just making music for random parts of a work and having to compromise a style to make it uniform with another piece (some interviews have them rather derogatory about sharing their project with loads of promotional vocal songs for example), so just using one or the other for most of the entirety is likely a more fluid process.
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2018
  12. PineapplePizza

    PineapplePizza Well-Known Member

    I was under the impression it was because the anime mostly used rearranged orchestral versions of the soundtrack from the video game and since the anime was brought over the West to advertised the localization of the games there was probably pressure from Nintendo of America. I know 4kids also kept some none-video game pieces like Team Rocket's theme and the title theme but that explanation always made the most sense to me. Pokemon was the only anime were 4kids ever kept any of the music.
  13. AuraChannelerChris

    AuraChannelerChris "And just what are you staring at?"

  14. OshyHikari

    OshyHikari c l a r i t y

    It's mostly because of the fact that Miyazaki's score is probably expensive to use, as they have to pay him when they use his score. This likely explains why the dub's music mostly gets replaced by notably inferior TPCi-produced score, which got very egregious when Ed Goldfarb took over in XY.
  15. PineapplePizza

    PineapplePizza Well-Known Member

    That doesn’t make any sense. They used some of the Japanese music. And I severely doubt they pay by the piece used. Also a number of the movies did keep the Japanese music fully intact.

    If they had to pay extra to use the music than I’m willing to bet 4Kids and TPCI would have just opted to do a full on replacement score.
  16. OshyHikari

    OshyHikari c l a r i t y

    It's because the fandom started rumours that TPCi would have to pay royalties to Miyazaki, and that's probably what I fell for.
  17. Lord Starfish

    Lord Starfish Fond of owls

    I mean, all of this is speculation, but to me at least, the idea that they need to pay more depending on how much music they use make sense. Or at least that they get more money for having more original music in the dub.
  18. PineapplePizza

    PineapplePizza Well-Known Member

    It seems more likely they would have had to pay a flat fee if the music wasn’t already wrapped in the shows rights. (And I’m betting its the latter)

    Why would 4Kids when Pokemon first came to the US and no one had idea how big it would be internationally pay extra money to keep about half the Japanese score and then go on to only keep the title theme and Team Rocket motto around the Advance era? I’m willing to be if 4Kids had to pay by the piece they would have just thrown the whole score out to begin with

    Hell after movie 3 all the 4Kids dubbed movies kept all the Japanese music. You really think they would bother to pay a bunch of extra money for their post-Pokemania direct to dvd movies to keep the whole score intact?

    Honestly, what seems more likely to me is 4Kids receives the show this being their first foray into dubbing they don’t go too crazy with it other than trying to whitewash the Japanese elements (because evidently 4kids thinks American kids dont know what ramen is?) but the scripts are mostly faithful and they only redub the Pokemon cries when they have to (Nintendo of America assigned it a completely different name than the Japanese) they don’t set out to replace the Japanese score but the score has tones of periods with no music at all. According to Focus groups kids cant stand not having wall to wall music or something so 4kids creates a brand new score to fill in where the Japanese score had silence and replaced a few pieces because maybe they thought their music fit better here? But as the show gets more liberal in its dubbing with looser dialog translations and more Americanization and 4kids has it in their heads “our music is what the kids want” they get to the point they’re only keeping about the title screen music and the Rocket Motto and maybe a piece here and there
  19. Lord Starfish

    Lord Starfish Fond of owls

    ...Only for TPCi to then scale back on this for a while, and then go full-in on taking 4Kids's practices to an even greater extreme despite otherwise being more faithful? Fair point about the movies running counter to my "They're being cheap" idea though. They stopped making new soundtracks for the movies at the same time that they stopped giving them wide theatrical releases, and now we've had two modern movies that were also screened in cinemas, one of which scrapped the entire score aside from one track, the other which kept the entire score (despite being a very rare instance where I could actually see a proper artistic argument for making a few tweaks, aka, changing Lugia's theme)...

    ...You know, this just really reaffirms one thing to me; The handling of Pokémon's soundtrack in general is all sorts of weird and I really struggle to see any consistent logic to it... It almost makes me wish they'd just go full on rescore for everything just because that would at least be less confusing...
  20. Ryu Taylor

    Ryu Taylor Unwavering beliefs

    M21's "music" being an unmitigated movie-annihilating disaster alone justifies such a mindset.

    As for why 99% or so music replacement tends to happen nowadays, I can only answer that with this: don't know, don't care. I'm just happy the end result is that the West gets a soundtrack that beats the original.

Share This Page