Flaming Geeks

Ep. 17 - Censorship no Kizuna! Uranus no Tooi Cousin.
(Bonds of Censorship! Uranus' Distant Cousin.)
By J. Andrews

In order to fully explore all the changes made to this episode, I had to first make a transcript of the episode. I then also had to find a translation of the original -- K. Butler helped me with this. Feel free to explore the differences between the two scripts yourself, or keep reading and I'll highlight the major points for you.

I'll start with the episode title, because it caught my attention. The original title is "Unmei no kizuna! Uranus no tooi hi", or "Bonds of Fate! Uranus' Distant Days". The name of the dub version is "Related by Destiny". Now 'bonds of fate' and 'related by destiny' do have similar meanings. They both mean Uranus and Neptune are close partners and friends because of their shared destiny. But the connotations of both these phrases are vastly different. 'Related by destiny' has clear connotations of their cousin-hood, which makes this title rather annoying to those of us who prefer our Uranus and Neptune as a couple. While the original, 'bonds of fate', gives the idea of being trapped into that destiny. I must say I prefer the original, with all its meanings.

This episode goes horribly, horribly wrong. We knew it would. Once Amara and Michelle were made into cousins, the fate of this episode was sealed. This is the episode where we see how Haruka and Michiru met and how Haruka became Uranus. Now, them being cousins was going to screw that up all by itself, but add to it the fact that Elza Grey is clearly interested in women and is playing romantic go-between, and we're in serious trouble.

The main theme of this episode, Haruka running from her destiny, is kept intact, but that's pretty much all that is. Our first noticeable change is Elza Grey pinching two inner senshi's butts. In the original, she pinches their butts and remarks on how firm they are. This is clearly her flirting, but she segues into how they'd be good on the track team because of it. In the dub, she wiggles her fingers and just happens to touch their butts. Their reaction this time, instead of merely being surprised, is disgusted. "Yucko!" How dare a girl touch their butts? Well, she has reason enough. It's a "spider stretch" that her coach informs her will help her with her sport. Her sport is running.. how is wiggling her fingers going to help that? I know one sport where dexterity is important, and it ain't taught in schools!

Other dialogue is being changed here and there, and people are acquiring extra lines somehow, but the gist of everything is pretty much intact. What caught my notice next was Amara calling Michelle. In the original, Haruka simply tells Michiru what's going on, succinctly. In the dub, she says something, then Michelle says something, then she says something again, and Michelle says something again. Why? Because Michelle can't keep her big mouth shut, that's why. She loves to ramble. So what was an emotional pause on the part of Haruka got turned into her listening to Michelle.

This is when it all begins to go to pot. Suddenly needing to cover up all this "meeting for the first time" and "I have a crush on you", the dub writers start making up things left and right. The first thing they made up was Elza and Michelle knowing each other from art classes. Quite a coincidence that Elza is into art with Michelle and into track with Amara. Isn't it possible Elza and Michelle are just friends? Or maybe they met at a Lesbian Alliance meeting.

In the original, and I admit I'm interpreting this just a little, Haruka has been having dreams about the end of the world and about Sailor Neptune. So instead of her dreaming about her partner before having met her, we have her randomly dreaming about her cousin. Mmhmm.

To cut a long story short, Michelle is already Neptune and knows her cousin is Uranus, but the two haven't been very close recently, so she's been able to keep this a secret. How Elza Grey plays into this, I don't know. She's helping the cousins reconcile or something. Maybe she wants a threesome.

Michelle immediately starts lecturing Amara about running away from her destiny, which makes no sense when, later, she says she didn't want to tell her, wanted to let her escape as long as she could. You're a witch, Michelle, and you're a hypocrite. (No offense to witches, I just didn't want to use the other word here.)

Instead of Michiru asking the girl she has a crush on if she can paint her, we have Michelle asking her cousin out for.. hot cocoa. Hot cocoa? Can't they even drink coffee for crying out loud?

This next scene is one of poor dubbed Michiru's worst moments. In the original, people are chatting about what a wonderful player she is, and painter. It's a shame, they say, that she's not very sociable. In the dub, this gets perverted into 'social failure'. *gag spit* I'm sorry I had to quote that, Michiru. You deserve better.

We also get the comment 'some people are just born into it'. That's right. It goes along with dub Elza's earlier comment about a good 'gene pool' producing talent such as Amara and Michelle. Don't think for a minute that they actually practiced, studied, and worked hard for their achievements!

In the next scene, where Michiru is supposed to confess she has a crush on Haruka and has been watching her, we get Amara and Michelle rambling about how they've grown apart and how important their pursuits are to them. Another witch scene for Michelle occurs here. In the original, she admits coyly that there's a certain girl (namely her) who would like to take a ride with Haruka, and she flips her hair. Flirt, flirt. In the dub, she makes a comment about Amara being everyone's sports idol. With the hair flipping, this comment turns very snide. If I were Amara, I would've smacked her right then and there.

Amara quotes the Joker next. What's up with that? Running out of lines that make no sense anyway, so borrow another nonsense line from Batman. But why? This scene suddenly becomes much more verbose than the original. Amara and Michelle are rambling on and on, while Haruka and Michiru know the meaning of dramatic pauses. While they're at it, they neatly snip mention of Haruka being the #1 junior racer in Japan.

This scene also throws in mention of high school. High school? They're supposed to be in junior high. This is a flashback! It's supposed to show that Haruka and Michiru have been at this together for awhile. Grrr.

So we move on to the pivotal scene. Kid becomes monster, Neptune kicks butt, gets hurt, Haruka doesn't touch the stick, yadda yadda. We have an alteration of a line to let you know that Neptune would never actually kill an innocent kid, oh no. What a wuss.

They alter other lines. Haruka explaining why she protected Neptune, "If you injure your arm, you won't be able to play violin." Neptune explaining how she wasn't watching Haruka all this time because she knew she was Uranus, but because she was truly interested in her as a person. She again repeats, bluntly and not coyly this time, that she's always wanted to go for a ride with Haruka by the beach.

Michiru apologizes for Haruka having to find out she's Uranus. Michelle's just glad she's finally got company. She is a such a.. but I've said that already.

We'll jump over the destruction of the heart snatcher scene, not much different there.

This last scene means so much more in the original. Michiru finally gets her way. She gets to ride with Haruka, by the beach. She also got to sketch her, as we see by her sketchbook in the back seat.

In the dub, we get some lame conversation about milkshakes.

We lose the most interesting parts of this episode. Michiru is transformed into a little wussy witch. Elza Grey has no point to even being there. Two girls discovering that they're not only partners, but interested in each other gets transformed into cousins bickering with each other. Why, I ask you. Why? Sigh.

Hot cocoa and milkshakes. Maybe they'll at least share a straw.

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This page written July 23, 2000 by J. Andrews
This site copyright 2000 by J. Andrews, K. Butler,
and J.Dunbar. Email is flaminggeeks@yahoo.com.