‘Star Blazers’ Superfans Interviewed
ComicMix pals Michael Pinto and Brian Cirulnick were recently interviewed by the crew at StarBlazers.com, the official website of the Star Blazers animated series, and the conversation is an interesting read even if you’re someone who’s (*gasp*) not very familiar with the series — like me, for instance.
Along with running the show over at Anime.com and Fanboy.com, Pinto and Cirulnick were also the creators of the first official Star Blazers fan organization and the very first Star Blazers fan film, respectively. How’s that for fanboy cred, eh?
In the interview, Pinto and Cirulnick discuss the ins and outs of the superfan scene, the evolution of fan organizations through the years and how a mutual
obsession admiration for a series can turn into a career.
Here, Pinto discusses the "duping parties" that made it possible for American anime fans to get their fix:
I hate to say it but in the early 80s most of our fan activity was trading video tapes from Japan. It’s funny that people talk about illegal downloads as something new, but without tape-trading, anime fandom would never have gotten started in the United States. People would have pen pals from Japan send them tapes and they would makes copies of those for other friends. Being an analogue medium, the quality of the tapes got pretty bad pretty quickly. Most of my early anime memories were of 5th generation VHS tapes, chock-full of static, noise distortion and tracking issues. At many conventions we’d have tape-duping parties where we would daisy-chain VHS decks together to make copies. These sessions would run an entire weekend and were the only source of anime for many fans.