Beyblade - A New Spin on an Old Top

Episode 8 May 24, 2019 00:44:01
Beyblade - A New Spin on an Old Top
Fanthropological
Beyblade - A New Spin on an Old Top
/

Show Notes

Who would’ve thought that spinning battle tops could enchant kids and adults alike? And that the franchise has more in common with Transformers than meets the eye? Definitely not us -- listen along as we learn about the fandom that shouts “Let it Rip!” with glee. ## Episode Outline **Topics:** Beyblade as the first anime series that ran up against our budding cynicism, the complexity of the toys, the complexity of the battles, the reality of the tournament scene, Beyblade World Championships, the World Beyblade Organization, adults are fans?, the physical appeal of Beyblades, why does [this guy](https://knowtechie.com/5-tips-and-tricks-that-every-beyblade-player-must-know/) have four apple watches?, Beyblades and bathtubs don’t mix ### Fandom Facts “Beyblade, known in Japan as Explosive Shoot Beyblade, is a Japanese manga series written and illustrated by Takao Aoki to promote sales of spinning tops called "Beyblades" developed by Takara Tomy. ... The series focuses on a group of kids who form teams with which they battle one another using Beyblades. … An anime adaptation, also titled Beyblade and spanning 51 episodes, aired in Japan on TV Tokyo from January 8, 2001, to December 24, 2001. The second, Beyblade V-Force, ran for another 51 episodes from January 7, 2002, until December 30, 2002. Beyblade G-Revolution, the third and final adaptation, also spanned 52 episodes (the last two episodes were released together as a double-length special in Japan) and aired from January 6, 2003, until its conclusion on December 29, 2003.” —[Wikipedia - Beyblade](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Beyblade_Burst) * Even though the original series only aired between 2001 to 2003, a sequel, [Beyblade: Metal Fusion](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Beyblade:_Metal_Fusion) premiered in 2008 and ran until 2012, a Japanese-Canadian spin-off, [BeyWheelz](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/BeyWheelz), which aired in 2012, and another sequel, [Beyblade Burst](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Beyblade_Burst), which ran from 2016-2017 (though the manga is still ongoing) * “Beyblade, Let It Rip! The Official Album was released in the UK to coincide with the show's popularity. It featured the anime's opening theme, as well as songs by artists including Nickelback and Busted.” ([Wikipedia](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Beyblade)) * Interest in Beyblade is… a little down since 2004 according to Google Trends ([but is really, really variable](https://trends.google.com/trends/explore?date=all&q=%2Fm%2F03hsp2)). There was a huge spike in interest around late 2010 (Release of Metal Fusion in North America, perhaps?), and has since dropped but is on the rise again. * [The Beyblade subreddit](https://www.reddit.com/r/Beyblade/) only has about 2400 subscribers, and, bizarrely, explicitly prohibits “roleplay, fanfiction, or memes, all of which deserve their own subreddits.” ### First Impressions #### G It was the first series I remember being like “oh they’re still doing this thing?” about. Just another physical thing to collect and fight, and one that wasn’t part of my growing up at all. #### T Going to be honest; as a kid, even though I loved anime, I thought it was super dumb (and, given timing, I might have just been outside of the age demographics for it)... and I liked Yu-Gi-Oh (although I also had stopped watching that). Fighting magic tops sounded… stupid, and I don’t think I ever got over that. I am excited to see if my impressions have changed though. #### Z Before starting the research for this one, my strongest memory of Beyblade was that it was one of what seemed like many shows trying to channel some of the hype around Pokemon -- one of those shows about something collectible that battles and has its own personality (or “heart” in the case of Yu-Gi-Oh). In particular, I remember my younger brother being really into the show, though I don’t think he ever got into collecting the tops themselves. I wouldn’t say that I thought it was a pale imitation of Pokemon (kind of like Digimon…), but that it was more a part of the second (third?) wave of that kind of shonen show. ### Observations This fandom seems to draw mostly on the physicality of the actual toys and battling them, and the lengths to which fans can customize their beyblades and (at least appear to) use potentially complex strategies to try to overcome their rivals. However, given that this franchise is second only to Transformers in generating income for Hasbro, the apparently miniscule fandom in the English-speaking world doesn’t quite account for what must be a larger fandom. Though we didn’t dig too deeply into it, it seems that the bulk of the fandom is likely in regions where English is not a major language, and so information, opinions, and potential data are hidden from us behind a language barrier. ### Conclusions In a world where so many of our pastimes are found on screens and in virtual worlds of one sort or another, the physicality of a Beyblade battle is incredibly appealing. If any of us come across an open play event, we’ll be stopping in to let it rip right alongside long-time fans. ## Where can you find us? Pretty much everything we do is `something/thenickscast`, but specifically... * If you're looking for this podcast (Fanthropological), you can find it at [Fanthropological.com](https://fanthropological.com) or on different podcatchers including [Spotify](https://open.spotify.com/show/2IVp8MBIUyCqlKyZn79iHn), [Apple Podcasts](https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/fanthropological/id1163621210?mt=2), [Google Podcasts](https://www.google.com/podcasts?feed=aHR0cDovL2ZlZWRzLnBvZGlhbnQuY28vZmFudGhyb3BvbG9naWNhbC9yc3MueG1s) and many others! * Keep up-to-date with our latest goings-on on [Facebook](https://facebook.com/thenickscast), [Twitter](https://twitter.com/thenickscast), or [Instagram](https://instagram.com/thenickscast), all `@thenickscast` * We also occasionally create extra content about fandom including convention coverage and interviews on [YouTube.com/thenickscast](https://youtube.com/thenickscast) * We have some fine merchandise available at [shop.thenickscast.com](https://shop.thenickscast.com) (and we'd love your support!) * If all else fails, you can email us: [[email protected]](mailto:[email protected]) ## What is "Fanthropological"? Every week, Fanthropological delivers about an hour of fandom-related "fanalysis" covering a different fandom every week and giving you hard data, history, special guests, and, of course, speculation! We cover topics spanning the gamut of anime, manga, comics, video games, comics, movies, books, television, and, in general, geek culture. ## Credits * All other music and sound for this week's episode were provided by Nick Green!

Episode Transcript

No transcript available...

Other Episodes

Episode 5

December 01, 2017 01:05:52
Episode Cover

#53 - Tales of Fans

What exactly is the significance of gel, and what is it that ties together a series that shares only two words (Tales of)?? This week, we're talking about fans of the _Tales of_ series (e.g. Tales of Phantasia, Tales of Symphonia, Tales of Zestiria, Tales of Berseria) with special guest (and Maple Gel Con organizer) Jesi McMulkin! Next week, we'll be demystifying the world of anime and manga fans a bit as we discuss fans of josei and shoujo... or in layman's terms, anime and manga "for women and girls". ## Where can I learn more about Jesi McMulkin? If you enjoyed listening to our special guest, Jesi, and want to learn more about the _Tales of_ series, you should definitely checkout [Maple Gel Con](http://maplegelcon.squarespace.com/) in Burlington, Ontario! ## Episode outline ### Fandom Facts **Origins:** The _Tales_ or _Tales of_ series is a video game series that has been running since 1995 with the release of _Tales of Phantasia_ on the Super Famicom. While there are sixteen main titles, many spin-offs, manga, anime, and audio dramas, the different entries in the series are fairly independent of each other and are mostly linked by their similar gameplay style (in particular, the "Linear Motion Battle System"), and its anime/manga art style. In English-speaking regions, it is generally seen as a niche series but is in the top-running for RPG series in Japan (behind Final Fantasy and Dragon Quest). **Most Active:** [By Google search volume](https://trends.google.com/trends/explore?date=all&q=%2Fm%2F038sbw), interest in various Tales-series games has been on a slow decline, with the most interest in the game series occuring between 2003 and 2004 (corresponding to the releases of _Tales of Symphonia_ and _Tales of Rebirth_). **Size of Fandom:** One estimate for the size of the ...

Listen

Episode 2

July 20, 2018 01:23:04
Episode Cover

Galaga - The Long Quarter

This week, we're teaming up to get a high score with Michael Kimball as we blast into the world of... Galaga?! What is it about the classic arcade game that has held its allure for more than thirty years? And where is the fandom heading? Next week, we move from space fighter to space _robots_ to talk about Gunpla with [the Otaku Journalist, Lauren Orsini](https://www.otakujournalist.com/)! ## Where can I learn more about Michael Kimball? You can learn more about Michael by [checking out his website](http://www.michael-kimball.com/) or perhaps even by reading his book, [_Galaga_](https://bossfightbooks.com/collections/books/products/galaga-by-michael-kimball) published by Boss Fight books! ## Episode outline ### Fandom Facts **History and Origins:** > Galaga is a Japanese arcade game developed and published by Namco Japan and by Midway in North America in 1981. It is the sequel to 1979's Galaxian. The gameplay of Galaga puts the player in control of a spacecraft which is situated at the bottom of the screen, with enemy aliens arriving in formation at the beginning of a stage, either trying to destroy, collide with, or capture the spaceship, with the player progressing every time alien forces are vanquished. > > — [Wikipedia - Galaga](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Galaga) The game has been re-released and sequeled multiple times, with at least twenty different games existing in its release history including tie-in versions for popular anime _Space Dandy_ and fighting game series _Tekken_. **Size of Fandom:** Estimating the number of fans is always difficult. Using a few data points that we have: - The [Galaga subreddit](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Galaga) has about 140 subscribers - The [Arcade subreddit](https://www.reddit.com/r/cade/) has over 22 000 subscribers - The [Retrogaming subreddit](https://www.reddit.com/r/retrogaming/) has almost 63 000 subscribers - Two remixes on [OverClocked Remixes](http://ocremix.org/game/192/galaga-arc) - [300 000 people](http://www.chicagotribune.com/sns-bc-as--new-zealand-galaga-wars-20180504-story.html) tuned in to watch a livestream of a Galaga tournament Given such a ...

Listen

Episode 7

August 24, 2018 01:43:04
Episode Cover

Chrono Trigger - Avocado Toast at the Millennial Fair

Will fans of this classic SNES gem be lost to Lavos, or will they endure, like Gaspar at the end of time? Where does Chrono Cross figure into the whole situation? Fortunately, we know someone who wrote the book (well, _a_ book) on the subject: we're talking with Michael P. Williams, author of _Chrono Trigger_, about fans of... well, Chrono Trigger! Next week, it'll be the (smile) bomb, as we talk about fans, of a certain popular shonen 'sho' from the 90s! ## Where can I learn more about Michael P. Williams? If you want to learn more about Michael's work, your best bet is to check out... - His book, [Chrono Trigger](https://bossfightbooks.com/products/chrono-trigger-by-michael-p-williams), published by Boss Fight Books (now available in [audiobook form](https://www.audible.ca/pd/Chrono-Trigger-Audiobook/B07G4L4VFT))! - [Boss Fight Books](https://bossfightbooks.com/) where he does a lot of editting - The Boss Fight Books twitter, [@bossfightbooks](https://twitter.com/bossfightbooks) (Yes, there is a trend here) ## Episode outline ### Fandom Facts **History and Origins:** Chrono Trigger is a Super Nintendo JRPG released in 1995. It was developed by Square (notable for such other games as Final Fantasy) and its so-called "Dream Team": Hironobu Sakaguchi (the creator of the Final Fantasy Series), Yuji Horii (creator of Enix's popular Dragon Quest series), and Akira Toriyama (an artist well known for his work with Dragon Quest and his ongoing manga / anime series: Dragonball, among other things). It also featured music composed by Yasunori Mitsuda (the _Chrono_ series, Mario Party, Xenosaga) and Nobuo Uematsu (Final Fantasy). To put it succinctly: The game follows a group of adventurers who travel through time to prevent a global catastrophe... that they will never personally encounter. It has since been released and re-released multiple times with the SNES and Playstation versions shipping over 2.65 million ...

Listen