Interviews with Anime FanSubbing Staff

The Goddess interviews FalseDawn editor, QC'er and timer.

uniquec: The Goddess has decided to take her highly controversial Fansubber Interview Series on the road and now offers you a new installment. Today, we are showcasing FalseDawn who works for several groups you may have heard of.

uniquec: Welcome to uniquec's power of persuasion. So, let's start with the basics: what do you do?

FalseDawn: I'm an idler, editor, timer, and occasionally I do QC for various groups. Mostly an idler though.

uniquec: In that order? You want to be known as an idler, for the most part?

FalseDawn: It's not a case of wanting to be, but the fact that I already am known for it. I've completely disappeared from the scene enough times to give myself a reputation in that particular field.

uniquec: So what groups have you worked for or are presently working for?

FalseDawn: How long have you got?

uniquec: My time is endless.

FalseDawn:: Sounds mystical.

uniquec: I am a goddess after all. Time is a state of mind.

FalseDawn: I've worked for a lot of groups in the past, but I'm mostly active in Saizen and Ureshii currently. I'm also trying to help kick Umai back into life, though that's proving more difficult that I first thought....

uniquec: You like to help revive groups?

FalseDawn: Groups I'm fond of. I still harbour an ambition to help revive Solar. But that's a difficult task. Solar was the first group I joined when I first got into fansubbing and I like the way they do things, but a lack of staff has hindered any kind of revival. I learned a lot in my time there and I think it's a shame that an old group has just wasted away like that, as most old groups have.

uniquec: Thatís to be expected. People come and go, especially in the world of fansubbing.

FalseDawn: Yeah, the main (only) translator went to med school so he pretty much disappeared and since then, the group hasn't really been up to much.

uniquec: I'm surprised he had much time to translate and attend med school at the same time.

FalseDawn: He didn't, that's why he quit!

uniquec: Lol. So what drew you into the world of fansubbing?

FalseDawn: Ha, you and your easy questions... I don't know, really. I'd been watching fansubs for over a year before I started fansubbing myself and I think it just got to the point where I wanted to put something back in rather than just leeching and not really caring beyond that. It also gave me the chance to try out some of the English skills I was learning for my degree, as I have a particular passion for the English language and all its quirks and oddities.

uniquec: And quirky people too?

FalseDawn:: Quirky people? There's a lot of quirky people in the fansubbing world.

uniquec: So, are you quirky as well?

FalseDawn: I suppose we're all quirky in a way because we all enjoy a niche medium. Whether that's anime itself, or jobs like encoding. But yeah, there are some people who are more quirky than others. Most fansubbers I've had the pleasure of talking to are pretty normal though.

uniquec: Just the fans aren't normal.

FalseDawn: Oh I wouldn't say that. Obviously you get the odd obnoxious fanboy/leecher, but most are actually all right.

uniquec: Do you get along with people outside your fansubbing groups?

FalseDawn: I get on with you, uniquey! But yeah, I usually lurk a lot on IRC, so I get to join in a lot of different conversations. Of course, there's generally more focus on conversation in staff channels. But sometimes, an interesting topic comes up in some of the larger channels.

uniquec: So, other than your own groups, which groups do you enjoy watching anime from?

FalseDawn: Ha, that's a pretty loaded question. Generally, I watch groups who have a pretty good track record, so the Froth-bite's and the Triad's of the world. But there are a lot of groups I refuse to watch on principle, because I know that the editing will spoil my enjoyment of a series. I wonít watch anything speed-subbed, with the exception of Eclipse and gg. I'd rather wait for groups who actually care about what they're subbing so that they'll actually produce a sub worth watching. It's like vulture groups who start a series halfway through. I've also gone out of my way not to watch a Shinsen release for the last few years...

uniquec: Because you donít like a certain leader that wonít be named?

FalseDawn: Ha yeah, that's the main reason. He's one of the few fansubbers I just can't stand. Which is a shame, because Shinsen have some good staff and some nice people, like Asakomi, Merines, martino, getfresh, etc. (sorry if I missed anyone!)

uniquec: He does have quite the attitude...

FalseDawn: Yeah, and I think it adversely affects the group's output a lot of the time.

uniquec: Whatís your favourite anime?

FalseDawn: Tough question. I usually list about five when anyone asks this because it's like "what's your favourite band?" I'm a particular fan of Laputa: Castle in the Sky, which I've been trying to write a review for, for the last two weeks. Laputa was the first anime film I ever watched, when I was about three. It was on TV and I think it sparked my imagination. It opened my eyes to the whole fantasy and anime genres.

FalseDawn: My recent favourite series though, is probably Kaiba. It was a very unexpected title and I almost dismissed it as being childish until I watched the first few episodes and realised that it is in fact a deep sociological experiment of a series and it kept me gripped despite being quite a slow-burn series. It wasn't the plot itself that held my attention Ė it was quite simplistic when you broke it down. My enjoyment stemmed from its social and political impact. For example, there's a terrorist group in the series by the name of Issoudan that's built on lies and fear. We get to see that the ideals they're striving for arenít the ideals they're willing to uphold. The group's leader is also very manipulative to his own ends. It produces a good message on the nature of mobs and I suppose terrorism specifically. I really enjoyed it. A very underrated series.

FalseDawn: But I could talk for hours about favourite series. There will always be one out of every season that I can say I really enjoyed.

uniquec: Whatís your least favourite series?

FalseDawn: I'd probably rate Kenichi and H2O on the list of "shows I must burn" and stab the directors, if possible. Both of them were appalling.

uniquec: A mere stab is too good for those two...

FalseDawn: Ha, exactly. A complete waste of time.

uniquec: What about your hobbies outside of anime?

FalseDawn: I enjoy music and Iím currently listening to Elbow, which is very relaxing. I like pretty much every type of music, except pop and R&B and anything manufactured and crap. But my general rule is, as long as it's good, I can enjoy it. I like some random shit.

uniquec: Music for all occasions?

FalseDawn: For every mood, yeah. I'm also a lapsed writer and poet.

uniquec: Where in the world would you like to travel to, but have never been to?

FalseDawn: Well, my first thought is LA, because I've got a bunch of novellas I want to write that I want to set there. But having never been there, that's a little problematic. Iíd have to properly exploring the city. Being British, you hear a lot about Los Angeles thatís probably all myth. Perhaps going there for a few months could dispel some of those myths. Though, I'm a naturally bad tourist. I enjoy people more than places.

uniquec: Sometimes, the truth is scarier than the myth though...

FalseDawn: But the truth is often more interesting. That's why lots of writers are into gritty realism at the moment. The more real it seems, the more exciting it becomes. And sometimes seeing things with your own eyes is the only way to form an opinion.

uniquec: Surely that only forms a one-sided opinion?

FalseDawn: Well it depends. If you've been writing for a long time like I have, you tend to form several opinions, all from lots of different perspectives, all at the same time, so it's not just a case of "how do I see it?" but how do other people see it? I live in a tourist town and have done for several years now but I still enjoy looking at things the way a tourist would. That way, I usually notice things I hadn't before as a resident.

uniquec: And where would you recommend visiting that youíve already been visited?

FalseDawn: Paris is always a favourite destination of mine. It's such an old city with lots of new parts to it. Obviously I've only ever been there as a tourist so I don't know Paris all that well, but the gardens in front of the Eiffel Tower are nice. And it's always nice to while away the hours in a French cafe. It's just such a different lifestyle there to the English way of life. I'm not particularly well-travelled though, I have to admit.

uniquec: Do you like to travel?

FalseDawn: There are times when I do and times when Iíd rather just stay in the comfort of my own home. I like new landscapes, but I also like having somewhere to come back to. So I usually have to wrestle with these two conflicting feelings before I go anywhere. It's always nice going somewhere new, though.

uniquec: A place to call home to fall back to, and fresh ideas to muse your creativity...

FalseDawn: I suppose. I guess I've just never really considered travelling much. All much too expensive for me at the moment. The curse of having a low-paying job!

uniquec: Do you dream in colour or in black and white?

FalseDawn: Colour. I have had a black and white dream before, but it was for artistic effect I think. I usually have pretty vivid dreams.

uniquec: Do you tend to remember them?

FalseDawn: I used to remember more. Recently, I've been remembering fewer and fewer dreams but sometimes, there'll be one vivid enough to make it into waking life.

uniquec: Can you control them?

FalseDawn: Yeah. Usually just before I wake up. I've been known to rewrite the endings of dreams about five times before being satisfied and letting the dream go.

uniquec: Whatís the oddest dream you remember?

FalseDawn: Ha, there was one when I was still in college, where I was running errands for the college headmaster on Christmas Eve and all my classmates were having a Christmas party in the common room, for some reason, and the headmaster turned out to be Darth Vader. Very strange dream but always makes me laugh.

uniquec: Were you watching Star Wars beforehand?

FalseDawn: Don't think so. I remember it being a very random appearance.

uniquec: If you could do anything youíve never done before, what would you like to do?

FalseDawn: Sit in an all-night cafe at 4am in Dublin and have a coffee. I have small ambitions like that. I don't go in for all this big ambition rubbish. Itís too overwhelming. Life is made up of little moments. I enjoy things like that.

uniquec: What would most people find surprising about you?

FalseDawn: I'm a pretty unsurprising guy, to be honest.

uniquec: Do you like surprises?

FalseDawn: Pleasant ones, I guess. Unpleasant ones, less so. But I suppose they keep life ticking over and they're always a little bit of excitement, whatever happens. Life is boring most of the time, so it's nice to have the odd surprise here and there.

uniquec: And now, my infamous question... boxer or briefs?

FalseDawn: Both, though obviously not at the same time. That'd just be silly. It generally depends what I pull out of the wardrobe or how much washing I need to do.

uniquec: Variety is the spice of life.

FalseDawn: You sound like a fortune cookie.

uniquec: Itíd be a little odd wearing both at the same time.

FalseDawn: Uncomfortable too, I'd imagine. Though, possibly quite useful in colder climates. Especially for keeping your private bits warm.

uniquec: Who would you want to be stranded on a desert island with?

FalseDawn: Do I have any restrictions on this? I mean, would you rather have the obvious answer Ė a hot woman Ė or an intelligent, thought-provoking one?

uniquec: Both.

FalseDawn: The hot woman would probably be someone like Zooey Deschanel or Ellen Page. They're both easy on the eye and entertaining too. They're pretty kooky, so I can imagine myself getting on with them quite well.

uniquec: You like kookiness, donít you?

FalseDawn: Being kooky is more entertaining. Being normal is boring. The intelligent answer would be: the guy who digs the tunnel in the Great Escape because, I mean, that's one pretty good tunnel. He'd have us off that island in no time. I'm useless, myself. Probably wouldn't even be able to hunt a coconut. And I'm hopeless at swimming so that'd be out. I'm just not the practical type. I didn't take woodwork at school. I'd probably attempt to build a shelter and slowly go insane... though, that doesn't sound too bad. I can think of worse scenarios.

uniquec: How about a member of the fansubbing community? You can choose from anyone from any group...

FalseDawn: My first thought would probably be Galdamez951 because that'd just be epic comedy (I can see the TV series now...). He'd piss me off so quickly that I wouldn't feel too morally wayward when it comes to eating him. You have to think about these things you know. On desert islands, cannibalism is a way of life. I've seen the films!

uniquec: That TV series wouldn't last too long...

FalseDawn: Maybe not, but the ratings for the final episode would be sky high.

uniquec: It's all about the ratings, then?

FalseDawn: Yep. That's why TV is full of those stupid reality programmes. I mean seriously, do we want to watch what the average Joe does day in, day out? Or whether they're any good at singing? I mean, we've regressed to watching talent shows now. They were airing those in the Seventies as primetime entertainment. I hate them. I want to set Simon Cowell on fire.

uniquec: Ha. It's all a vicious circle. Thereís nothing really new...

FalseDawn: Yeah, it's just a shame there's nothing more interesting. In my youth, the Saturday primetime slot was filled with game shows like Gladiators and Bullseye.

uniquec: You miss them?

FalseDawn: Compared to the crap we have now. I watched a programme earlier about celebrities trying to fit through holes in a giant wall. There's a whole series dedicated to celebs making shapes. It's ridiculous. Bring back Supermarket Sweep, thatís what I say. At least that was vaguely compelling. Watching a random member of the public running round a supermarket, trying to get as much in their trolley as possible; that was entertainment. Not someone who can't hold a note in front of four judges.

uniquec: True. So talking about supermarkets, what are your favourite foods?

FalseDawn: My favourite meal is the traditional Sunday roast. Canít beat it. It's actually making me hungry now, thinking about it. Other than that, I generally eat more out of necessity than for taste. Largely because I'm not a great cook and I don't really spend much time cooking. Not to mention the fact that I canít really afford expensive food. uniquec: And your least favourite food?

FalseDawn: Mushrooms. I despise them. Always have.

uniquec: Have you met anyone in real life that youíve met through fansubbing?

FalseDawn: Yeah, but I try to limit it. I used to meet lots of people from online communities but it just lead to heading all round the country. So I try to seal myself away nowadays.

uniquec: Ha, the secluded world of FalseDawn... So, any parting words?

FalseDawn: No. I don't have any. For this is not goodbye, merely adieu and all that crap...

uniquec: And on that note, I would like to thank FalseDawn for giving up his time to do this interview inbetween going to work and being distracted by his lovely Ellen Page. We hope you enjoyed this production. And yes, I know I forgot to ask my other infamous question Ė I guess I'm a little rusty from my time away!

Copyright 2008 Uniquec Productions

Any unauthorized use of this written work in any form without permission from the author will lead to lawful prosecution.