Today was a super exciting day for DBZ fans! And for myself, as well, not to mention hectic, nerve-racking, and plain stressful…But more on that in a bit.
It may have been April 5th here in the States, but over yonder in Japan it was already April 6th. And any anticipating Kai fan knows what was in store for today… the unveiling of the first episode of the Kai Boo Saga! All over Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook you could feel the excitement growing with every minute the episode neared, with plenty of fans asking us how to view it, general questions regarding the event, and simply fun discussion regarding the event and Kai in general!
It’s no secret that I love Dragon Ball Kai. In many ways I prefer it to Dragon Ball Z, mainly because I hate filler, I hate the original dub, and I love Yamamoto’s music (but let’s not touch on that). The Kai Boo arc was something I have looked forward to and hoped for since the end of the Kai Cell arc way back in 2011 (wow, it’s been that long already!?). And now that this was the day it would finally begin, I was super hyped. So hyped, in fact, that I decided to marathon Fuji TV from the start of the day till Kai aired. My journey began around 9:30 AM PST, which would be 1:30 JST. At that time, Fuji TV was broadcasting a horse racing show, with, in my opinion, one of the anchors being ridiculously cute.
After this there was a very boring kendou show, and at 11:00 AM PST (3:00 JST) there was a boxing match. This is where others began to join me, and when I shared the stream link to a select few. We were all very excited for it.
At 12:00 AM PST (4:00 JST), this is where the fun began. There were two back to back paid programs, both advertising odd products meant for body building. One was like a electric shaver and the other was a type of shoe. During this run, not only did my stream-sharers and I have a lot of fun cracking jokes about the odd products, but a commercial for Kai came on around 11:30 PST (3:30 JST), and that got me more hyped than I’ve been in a very long time. I just could not wait!
After the paid programming, at 1:00 PM PST (5:00 JST), there was a 45 minute speech on self confidence that I thought was very interesting, actually (I mean, from what I could understand, anyway). Still a few jokes were cracked by friends and me early on, but overall the speech was interesting.
After the speech, the morning block finally began with the FNN 6:00 AM News. It began with something regarding the still-negotiating Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) between Japan and Australia.
Not long after this brief news segment, viewers were treated with the Japanese version of the British children’s show Chuggington, which, to me, was not very entertaining; at this point no one else was watching along with me.
After Chuggington there was an hour of morning talk shows, but this is where things began to get complicated. Around 3:00 PM PST (7:00 JST), one of the people I shared the link to the stream with reported that, upon returning to the stream to check on things, it no longer worked. Instead, he was greeted with the image of a super-deformed drawing of Lebron James flying with a cape, with the Fengybzhibo logo next to him (this was the website we were streaming from). This was very bad. We have by this point made the link public, and encouraged all our Instagram followers (not including DBInsider, since no one posted anything on that page) to join us to view the premiere. I felt bad for the others who couldn’t watch, but I had other alternatives.
First, I readied KeyHole TV, just in case other backups failed. KeyHole TV is the absolute worst way to view Japanese television online. Firstly, you need a premium account to view streaming channels. Even then, it’s not worth it. The video quality is absolutely horrid, and the audio is even worse. It barely even works. Not to mention the constant lag and server disconnects.
Instead, I sought to stream the episode in a different way, using the program Niji Show.
At first, it worked very well, and the video quality was actually even better than the first stream’s! I was content and very excited… until that too failed me. After an extreme lag I tried reconnecting to the stream, but it simply wouldn’t load, and time was up. Therefore, I had to use the barely operable KeyHole TV to watch the premiere live, left with no other alternative. I was defeated in the end.
Later on I tried to reclaim my victory against the struggle of streaming Japanese TV using the on-demand streaming service NTKTV. I was sure this would be possible as the streams went all the way to 8:00 JST, but in some horrible stroke of luck for me, they skipped the 9:00 stream and jumped weirdly to a 9:51 stream. That completely shattered my morale.
Luckily a few hours later someone posted a raw 720p torrent of the episode, but it’s just not the same as watching it live. Hopefully I and the rest of the fandom have more luck next week.
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Anyway, on to the actual episode itself.
Entitled “7 Years Since That Event! Starting Today, Gohan’s a High Schooler”, this covered the very beginning of the Boo saga up until Goten is introduced. Like you’d expect from Kai, it’s very fast paced and takes no breaks to catch its breath. It’s sort of feels like the story cuts around a bit too much, considering the Boo arc didn’t have quite so much filler as the other arcs, but overall it doesn’t detract from the entertainment perspective at all. The audio is great and so is the voice acting. Videl’s new voice is fresh and has the cute factor, but it detracts from the tone her original voice gave. The music by Norihito Sumitomo (also the composer for Battle of Gods) fit well for the light-heartedness of this first episode. There were some recycled cues from the film itself, but everything, in my opinion, was good, and it will be interesting to be exposed to more of this score as the series rolls along. The video is sharp and clear, and Toei did a decent job remastering it, but there is serious need to make the colours a bit darker. Definitely not as bad as FUNimation, but it’s still a bit on the bright side. Overall, though, this revived pilot made me excited and stressed out, and I’m anticipating next week’s episode!