Review - Tainted Donuts - E-Ko

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Review - Tainted Donuts - E-Ko

Postby Castor Troy » Mon Nov 15, 2010 3:12 pm

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The classic crossover video. Who else other than me should be the one to start reviewing it?

First of all, Tainted Donuts wasn't exactly the *first* crossover video. Many people usually claim Doki's Senshi on Springer is the first, but maybe there were some before that, but I don't know. However, TD was the crossover video that literally started the genre and inspired others to do it. Although crossover videos are still quite rare in this day and age (especially due to the amount of work involved), many people still see this one as the "grandfather" of all crossover videos.

Tainted Donuts is the fictional story of Cowboy Bebop vs. Trigun, which is based one of the biggest fan debates of the past decade: "which western-style anime would win?". Through the use of masking and effects, the characters of both Bebop and Trigun are put into each other's worlds to create a believeable atmosphere that they are interacting with hilarious results.

The video uses a Japanese song in order to ignore the lyrics to tell the story. While using Japanese music wasn't exactly new at the time, the technique of using it to ignore lyrics to create a flow and tell a story was quite innovative. If the video had rely on lyric sync with an english song, then I couldn't imagine how limited the story would be.

While the effects are still quite good, they haven't aged as well as I thought. Several flaws are the mixing of some of the stills and footage (which was a huge problem in the Premiere 5.1-6 era due to the bad scaling). Some of the lip sync isn't quite on spot and I think lip flap would have been much more coherent instead of trying so hard to lip sync. Also, the infamous "white-coat Vash" at the the final part which was due to the difficulty of editing those scenes. I also noticed several scenes were only timed for the sake of sync and would have benefitted from "letting go of the beat" to tell the story better.

I had the pleasure of seeing it for the first time on the big screen at AX2001, after we all thought Doki's "Right now" was going to win the comedy category and best of show. From what I know, AX2001 was the only contest the video was shown (other than panels and amv showcases), so you really had to be there along with the huge crowd in the Long Beach Terrace Theatre to fully embrace the experience.

A true classic which spawned an entire genre of videos.

Discuss.
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Re: Review - Tainted Donuts - E-Ko

Postby Kosmit » Mon Nov 15, 2010 4:34 pm

This is the first of many crossover AMVs that I've seen and still one of the very best. While today's crossovers certainly look better, they often lack in the story department, which is what really makes Tainted Donuts such a great AMV and an all-time classic.
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Re: Review - Tainted Donuts - E-Ko

Postby Infinity Squared » Mon Nov 15, 2010 6:22 pm

When I watched this video for the first time, I was actually only barely aware of Cowboy Bebop and Trigun was unheard of for me. So it was only after some time later when I became familiar with these two distinct anime that I actually understood what the fuss was all about.

So perhaps, that's where it has somewhat failed. As a cross-over video, it certainly is worthy of all the accolades but as far as an actual action or comedy video, I would say that it hasn’t really delivered, even compared to the AMVs of the time.

I understand its charm now and indeed I’ve used it on a few panels I’ve run in the past already to illustrate early cross-over editing, but I definitely have better examples if we were to talk about other genres of videos.
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Re: Review - Tainted Donuts - E-Ko

Postby Castor Troy » Mon Nov 15, 2010 6:37 pm

Infinity Squared wrote:When I watched this video for the first time, I was actually only barely aware of Cowboy Bebop and Trigun was unheard of for me. So it was only after some time later when I became familiar with these two distinct anime that I actually understood what the fuss was all about.

So perhaps, that's where it has somewhat failed. As a cross-over video, it certainly is worthy of all the accolades but as far as an actual action or comedy video, I would say that it hasn’t really delivered, even compared to the AMVs of the time.

I understand its charm now and indeed I’ve used it on a few panels I’ve run in the past already to illustrate early cross-over editing, but I definitely have better examples if we were to talk about other genres of videos.


I remember E-ko subitting it as an action video, but it got placed into the comedy category at AX2001. In all honesty, it's way too slow paced for an action video until the end and I would actually agree with AX's placement of it.

I had only seen Bebop at the time and it was year before I saw Trigun. Aside from the Western setting of both shows, Trigun and Bebop are literally nothing alike. So maybe my non-knowledge of Trigun is what made it more enjoyable for me.
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Re: Review - Tainted Donuts - E-Ko

Postby Infinity Squared » Mon Nov 15, 2010 7:25 pm

Yeah, I guess this is just like the debate about doki's video about prior knowledge of the anime/context to really get into the feel of the video, and there's nothing fundamentally wrong with aiming to create a video with the expectation that your audience will have seen the anime you've used. Just that I'm betting somewhere in that crowd back in AX2001, a few people would have been in the same boat as me and wondering what the deal was but ultimately might have just smiled/laughed anyway because a convention laughter is contagious.
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Re: Review - Tainted Donuts - E-Ko

Postby Knowname » Mon Nov 15, 2010 9:49 pm

CB was just the first anime I actually watched (other than a few DBZ and DB here and there) so I came into this on a CB high... I didn't really care about Trigun, I loved it anyway :) and now it's just catchy as it fell into that 'reminiscent' territory
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Re: Review - Tainted Donuts - E-Ko

Postby MycathatesyouAMV » Mon Nov 15, 2010 10:27 pm

This is one my favorite amvs to watch. Just done so nicely, especially for it's time.
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Re: Review - Tainted Donuts - E-Ko

Postby JudgeHolden » Tue Nov 16, 2010 12:08 am

This is one of the videos that has inspired me throughout the years.
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Re: Review - Tainted Donuts - E-Ko

Postby Ileia » Tue Nov 16, 2010 12:11 am

I remember watching this video when I was first getting into anime and AMVs and being like "What's the big deal?", but at that point I'd only seen a handful of anime and I thought that this was just from one show. It wasn't until a while later that I realized that it wasn't....D:
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Re: Review - Tainted Donuts - E-Ko

Postby godix » Tue Nov 16, 2010 1:02 am

This is also one of the first AMVs I saw. I had seen Trigun so was familiar with that. I knew of Cowboy Bebop even though I hadn't seen it (and still haven't actually). So I guess I had the required pre-knowledge to enjoy it.

What I think I liked best was how simple the concept is. One anime has a guy with a bounty on his head. Another has a bounty hunter. It was such an obvious combination, yet no one had done it. I like the ideas that are work so well it leaves me going "I should have thought of that, but I didn't." I think Ileia's comment about 'what's the big deal' is actually a positive point, it indicates the idea works so well that a casual viewer wouldn't even realize how much work this must have taken.

The other thing that really drew me to the video, it told a story. An actual story, not just a brief synopsis of the anime's plot or some idiot who can't tell the difference between story and character profile.* Judging from some other comments, it may not have been that enjoyable a story for those who didn't know the animes, but even so it was still a story. And an original story too, although it certainly fit in with the tone of both series. Few videos even try doing that, and I admire the ones that pull it off as well as Tainted Donuts did.

Given it's time period, it was well done technically speaking. Watching it now and comparing it to what is standard today, there's a fair amount of issues. But eh, I think the execution of the idea was done well enough that even now it's easy to look past that and still enjoy the video.





*The difference is that a story video does what it says, tells a story. There is a plot that follows the traditional narrative form of exposition-development-climax-resolution-denouement. A character profile assumes people know the anime and what's going on, so it skips parts of the narrative structure. Often, it skips ALL of the narrative structure. Figured I'd explain before some moron side tracks the thread on this point.
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Re: Review - Tainted Donuts - E-Ko

Postby JaddziaDax » Tue Nov 16, 2010 2:30 am

I remember seeing it for the first time and wondering how the hell he did it... but at the time I wondered how the hell people made those "fancy piano bars".. >.>
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Re: Review - Tainted Donuts - E-Ko

Postby BasharOfTheAges » Tue Nov 16, 2010 8:18 am

Used to use this as an example of storytelling for AMV 101 @ Anime Boston - It was one of the best examples we could find of rolling your own narrative. It still ranks pretty high up there in that regard. :up:
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Re: Review - Tainted Donuts - E-Ko

Postby ZephyrStar » Tue Nov 16, 2010 8:53 am

I still think this is one of the greatest AMVs ever made.
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Re: Review - Tainted Donuts - E-Ko

Postby CrackTheSky » Tue Nov 16, 2010 12:08 pm

There's not much more I can say that hasn't already been said. This is a fantastic AMV, although it definitely gets off to a slow (and mildly confusing) start. I love it though, as far as crossovers go, this video is better-executed than most, even in a technical sense. If I didn't know the gimmick beforehand, I probably wouldn't have even noticed the blending of the two animes.

I think it's also worth mentioning that this influenced me in a way I didn't even realize until reading through CT's post - in one of my videos, I also used Japanese music for the express purpose of ignoring the lyrics; although I don't remember at the time making the connection between what I was doing and Tainted Donuts, I know I had seen TD (and read the video description) long before making my video, so the idea must have been a weird subconscious thing.
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Re: Review - Tainted Donuts - E-Ko

Postby Castor Troy » Tue Nov 16, 2010 12:39 pm

CrackTheSky wrote:I think it's also worth mentioning that this influenced me in a way I didn't even realize until reading through CT's post - in one of my videos, I also used Japanese music for the express purpose of ignoring the lyrics; although I don't remember at the time making the connection between what I was doing and Tainted Donuts, I know I had seen TD (and read the video description) long before making my video, so the idea must have been a weird subconscious thing.


Yeah, this video literally inspired my entire amv career. :awesome:

Before I even saw this, I was going through a time when I would lurk various DBZ messageboards and I was getting criticized pretty heavily over my excessive use of DBZ/Jpop. After seeing this win at AX2001, it was a really big IN YOUR FACE moment towards all the haters. :up:

I actually enjoy the video far more for it proving that videos with Japanese songs can win contests rather than it being a crossover.
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