I was somewhat surprised to see that, particularly coming the day after I pulled my Raideen LDs out to watch for the first time in I can't remember how long. Christmas Eve after I had prepared all the food I was going to prepare and wrapped all the presents I could stand to wrap I was feeling restless, and on a whim I pulled out one of my Raideen disks and threw it in.
I love this series. It's one of those that I will pull out certain episodes and recite the lines along with the characters -- I know it that well. Okay, it helps that I translated about a third of the episodes.
Watching it again brought back all kinds of memories... I first discovered the series right around when Gundam Wing was wrapping up and Escaflowne was just starting. (Or was Escaflowne just finishing...? I can't remember.) My local Japanese video rental store would get it one episode a week, along with three other shows. I can't remember what the other shows are, which gives you an idea of how memorable that stuff was. The farther store (all the way down in San Jose) would get four episodes to a tape, and that was how I generally watched it. Sure, it was a little annoying to have to wait a month between doses, but it wasn't really a problem. Not that I wasn't dying for the new episodes. But I could be patient enough to track down to San Jose and get a hit of four episodes at a time, rather than trying to run over to the other store and snarf an episode a week.
And then the series didn't end when I expected it to...
By the time the series got up to around 20 episodes I had addicted She Who Shares My Taste In Fine Cheese,hosikage, to it. For some reason I hadn't caught the (then) most recent two months. hoshikage had, and commented that the series had passed 26 episodes and it looked like they were starting a new arc... I got caught up and, yeah, wow, they did keep going even after completely destroying the Earth.
I was patient with the first four episodes of the arc. But then waiting an entire month for the next episode was just too much to expect me to do -- particularly when I could get my fix once a week.
As I recall, Raideen aired in Japan on Friday. The tape with the new episode would come in on Tuesdays. I would run over and grab it, and for three glorious days I would be caught up with everything the folks in Japan had seen. In this day and age of BitTorrent and the Internet that doens't sound like such a big deal, but back then it was almost unheard-of. It was pretty heady stuff for an over-achieving fan like me.
Come the weekend, I would bring the latest episode down to hoshikage in Santa Cruz, and we would squeal like the insane fangirls that we were. (Are?) And then we would sit and whimper that there was another episode out in Japan and we would have to wait a whole entire week until we could see it. Oh, the pain!
Back then I had an absolutely awesome job, one of the best of my life. It gave me enough space and security that I had time to waste brain power on frivolous stuff like translations. I would go out to my car at lunch time and translate while enjoying the sun. The vocabulary for the later episodes was easy enough that even back then I could just about knock out a translation a week. I was cool back then.
I don't remember why, but the week the final episode aired I think hoshikage was busy and I didn't see her until Saturday. I can't remember. Maybe I was just an overachiever then... By that point it had registered that I could just about knock out an episode translation a week. I had subtitling equipment. With a little bit of effort, I could have a subtitled episode together by the time I got together with my fellow fangirl. I don't know how I did it, but I did. By the time hoshikage and I got together, I had a surprise for her. It wasn't perfect, and there were still a couple of lines that weren't translated (and some really strange snarky comments inserted where whim struck me), but it was pretty much all subtitled. In less than a week.
I was cool back then. I don't know how, and I don't know what happened, but back then? Man, I was cool.
Watching Raideen always brings back happy memories of those days. When I look at my life now and ask myself what do I wish I had, I point to those days as an example of what could be. I re-watch the episodes and I call out the lines with the characters. And it makes me happy, and reminds me of the halcyon days of yore.
Oooh, all that nostalgia makes me tempted to re-watch one last episode before bed. *ponders* Though I think I will continue my current campaign of re-watching Kamen Rider Kuuga. Yes, I am ending the year by reveling in cheese. Just wait until I pull out the Vampire Bunnies. (I have them now in DVD quality! Yay! Perhaps one day I will achieve my dream of subtitling it!)