Hi, Renxkyoko Iglesias here, reporting for duty.
Actually, this blog post is just a reblog of the latest entry on my anime/ manga blogsite HERE. I deem it appropriate, as well, to be posted here on my anything – goes- blog . After all, anything goes here, right ? Well, this is about FYI animation business in the Philippines and the Philippines’ comics culture.. So without further ado……..
I have so much swirling on my mind that I don’t know which one to tackle first…….. Persona 4, the anime, or Chivalry of the Failed Knight ( which I like ), or maybe some thoughts on outsourcing of anime and cartoons from Japan and USA to other Asian countries. On second thought, I guess I’d write a bit about this outsourcing stuff, and Chivalry of the Failed Knight, that is, if I don’t get to write too much on the subject of outsourcing, which is a delicate matter for Americans……. This issue of outsourcing has , in fact, become a contentious subject among political candidates here in the US. These overseas companies are taking jobs away from Americans. To be honest, I believe that, too. Ninety percent of American cartoons are already produced in Asia, particularly in the Philippines, where Warner Bros. for example has set up a full-pledge animation studio, Toei, as well, ( Toei Japan is already based in the Philippines ), , Cartoon Network, Hanna Barbera ( almost 100% developed in the Philippines… Flintstones, Yogi Bear, etc, are made entirely in the Philippines, since the early 80’s ), Nickelodeon, Marvel, Universal Studious , and yes, Disney.
Marvel has so many Filipino illustrators in the US that they were allowed to create their own Filipino mutant ( or woman ) . Do you know that girl who can pass thru walls ? And there’s this big-muscled brown supposedly Asian mutant with a Hispanic name …. yep, they are Filipinos ( but not popular, teehee ). Oh, and Wolverine’s illustrator is a Filipino.
If the trend continuous, the Philippines may well become the cartoon capital of the world, according to business insiders. American animation companies, though, have been doing this in secret, and that’s quite understandable, given the situation here in the US. This has been going on since the early ’80’s. So guys, you may not like it, but Sailor Moon, One Piece, Slam Dunk, DigiMon, Dragon Ball, to name a few, are made in the Philippines, since the early 80’s. 101 Dalmatians, Tom and Jerry, Little Mermaid ( the TV series) Mickey Mouse, Buzz Lightyear, to name a few, are made in the Philippines, as well, QUIETLY and SECRETLY. However, Filipino illustrators are now clamoring to be recognized in the credits.
So, why do they outsource it to the Philippines, particulary from American animation studios ? 1. Besides the obvious one, ( the cost is cut in half ), 2. Filipinos understand Western sense of humor perfectly, and the nuances of the English language. The Philippines was a US colony for 50 years, and that’s why Filipinos get it. And thirdly, and this is most important, ( and sad, in my opinion ) comics has been a part of Filipino culture since the early 1900’s. I’m guessing this is an American influence on the Filipinos’ consciousness. The Philippines had been publishing comics since the early 20’s ( the most famous character since 1926 was Kenkoy, and his everyday life as a Filipino teenager in the 20’s ) , and since then, comics had proliferated. The Philipines, in fact, has been reading manga – like stories earlier than Japan. Some illustrated serials lasted years , and were avidly and eagerly followed on a weekly basis. The popularity of comics ( komiks ) was so widespread that the Philippines became one of the biggest publishers of comics magazines in the world ( second to the US ), pre 1990, after which it waned., and I assume, Japan took over with their mangas.
The illustration below is that of Filipino wonder woman DARNA, originally named Varga when it was first published in 1939, then morphed into Darna in 1947.
Varga in 1939, wearing a modest super woman costume
then as Darna, in 1947, in a nice bikini.
Come to think of it, Darna is sexier than American Wonder Woman. Why ? Look at the bottom bikini, It’s high cut, ha ha. Varga ‘s costume to Darna’s… you’ve come a long way, baby. Even in current standard, that costume it’s on the risqué side, don’t you think so ? By the way, Varga came out much earlier than American Wonder Woman. In other words, a Filipino woman’s place in Philippine culture was not typical of that era, especially in Asia. Philippine society is , in fact, matriarchal.
But here’s a superhero copycat, the Philippines’ version of Captain America. ( Captain Barbell ! !) Oh, before I forget, the Darna and above photos are courtesy of Wikipedia. Captain Barbell’s is from ernee’s corner
Here’s the thing…… I’m not saying Filipinos have comics mentality. Comics that time was a very cheap form of entertainment for poor Filipinos. Farmers taking a break from back-breaking work would seat under a tree and read. There was no TV , and no cinema in remote farming towns.
Well, this is all for now, folks. I hope you find this educational. Oh, and please don’t hate on the Filipino illustrators. The meager salary is enough to feed a family and send children to school. * sings * We are the world, we are the children… la la la. Bye and thank you for reading.