AKIHABARA, JAPAN - Japan has seen a boom in tourism lately, with the Japan National Tourism Organization estimating a cool 2.7 million tourists visiting the country in 2018. However, not everyone is a happy customer.
“I came to Japan with the understanding that anime had prepared me to live out all my childhood fantasies,” said area man Mael Wys. “But I didn’t expect to have trouble understanding everyone.”
Indeed, Japan is home to around 127 million people- and most of them reportedly speak a language called “Japanese.”
“I get that they want to speak their own language, but don’t you think it’s a bit ridiculous that they aren’t fluent in English? How are they going to function when they visit America?” inquired UCLA-trained statistician Gagsy.
Indeed, upon further research it has become clear that most Japanese people do not have any particular interest in visiting America.
“What?” one young Tokyo resident asked when questioned. “No thanks, I’m good lmao.”
But the problem still remains that many foreigners want to visit Japan, yet find themselves locked behind a paywall.
“It’s not the plane ticket, I get that,” said Mael Wys. “Planes are expensive, and you’ve gotta pay the employees. But why should I have to pay for dubbing when I can just get it for free for my internet anime?”
Mael Wys is of course referring to FUNimation’s new tiered-membership system taking effect this month. For only $5.99 a month, members get unlimited access to subbed and dubbed high-definition anime with no ads. But to get access to Japan, subscribers must opt for the Premium Plus Ultra tier, which costs $99.99 a year.
“For the record, dubbing Japan is an extremely expensive enterprise and has required us to hire five times as many staffers over the past couple of months,” FUNimation president Gen Fukunaga explained. “I haven’t been home to see my family in six months because there have been so many recording sessions to oversee.”
“I don’t have anything against supporting the industry,” Mael Wys countered. “But I’m not paying extra money for those services. It just doesn’t make economic sense for me after paying $2,000 for my plane tickets. Hopefully the fan translators will get off their asses and pump out some more free content for me, or at the very least rip it off FUNimation’s site.”