|This document seems to refer to companies Hal and Nintendo interchangably regarding the creation and mass production of Kirby junk. I can't be bothered going through it and making these more clear. A generalizing, oversimplifying, probably unfair rule that seems to work is "Hal did the good things and Nintendo did the bad ones." I will be focusing on these.|
|It has also occurred to me that there are probably a few thousand websites with Kirby information on them. However, I make no promise of attempting to inform.|
Perhaps the most fearsome Kids' Meal of them all:
WHEN DID THIS HAPPEN?!
Don't ask me how this bag came into my posession because... I won't tell you. It has nothing to do with my mild anorexia or quest to find a wordsearch puzzle at my grade level, it's just... alright, I ate some kid. Are you happy? Don't tell anyone.
For perhaps the first time I truly feel old, because if this had been made 12 years ago, I probably would have watched it. Likely only once, but that's still more than I'm likely to watch it now in the event I wake up before 11 am on a Saturday, remember this cartoon, and it hasn't been cancelled. The "Kirby's Avalanche!" (known in Europe as "Ghost Trap" for a reason unknown to Europeans) title screen voice alone was more than enough to make me thankful I had already played the taciturn, Kirbyless Genesis version (But that's for later). I don't think I could handle a full 21 minutes of that thing saying stuff.
In the past, I've denounced entire runs of television shows based on a single misleading ad made by people who probably had nothing to do with the actual program's production. Can I apply the same system of assumptions, generalizations and weird biases to a paper bag (One that it didn't even occur to me get pictures of all four sides of before discarding)?
I shall do my best.
Maybe I've lived a pathetic life, but my only recollection of the phrase "right back at ya" was in a BC comic strip. One of the neanderthals climbs a mountain, and there's an old-man-looking-neanderthal at the summit. The climber says to the old one something like "Oh, great guru, how many licks does it take bleh bleh bizarre anachronistic biblical symbolism bleh." The guru responds with "yo." Suddenly, he rolls down the other side backwards, and the climber looks confused. Just as suddenly, the old one rolls back up, and after reaching the top says "Yo, back atcha!" I was not then mature enough to understand. It turns out I still amn't. I wonder if I ever shall be.
Why was such a fantastic period of time taken to get a Kirby cartoon? One problem might have been that the initial supporting cast was remarkably unremarkable.
Also present, FoLolo and FaLala,
Lololo and Lalala,
Lolo and Pink Lolo
these two goons. If that doesn't work, they can always claim it was
Pop'n Twinbee impersonating them, as they seem to be able to fly now.
If two goons weren't enough for you (which I consider highly unreasonable of you), there is additionally a third goon, appropriately named "Escargoon." I'm no snail expert, but I know enough that they don't generally grow mustaches and make a show of themselves in publice unless they have serious attitude problems. Looks like trouble.
Remembering my past enjoyment, I would have taken some comfort (but not too much, i have my dignity) in knowing that this cartoon program is 100% a product of gross (as in: disgusting) American commercialism, but all signs point to "yes," it isn't. There really were actual Japanese people doing things other than signing away rights. I guess I just didn't want to believe that Nintendo was truly so evil, even though I've known ever since Super Mario RPG that, in fact, they are.
The original, Japan title was Hoshi no Kirby, and the story was that some people were looking for Kirby, but instead they found Hoshi, and called this out to their superiors. But what of star power? If you don't count the Satanic imagery Kirby defeats enemies with, there is none. It seems that when importing, redubbing, and rapaciously editing foreign productions, getting big celebrities like Urkel in the recording studio isn't a high priority.** Maybe some years ago it would have been trying to leech the success of the Sonic the Hedgehog cartoon (the stupid one or the putrid one, you choose), but this looks to be more in the image of the Pokemon cartoon. If you think I'm stretching Kirby's connection to the blue radioactive rodent, you should realize that they both battled for control of the coveted Fox Box.*** As for the yellow radioactive rodent, I also wanted an opportunity to pay homage to Ikue Ootani, who since 1997**** has had the honored task of saying "Pikachu!" many, many times in varying tones and inflections whenever the situation called for it.
*Although Flolo and Flala are credited, since it is with differently spelled names and as, apparently, a single character, I cannot accept that.
**The only exception is when you're redubbing something which does not need to be redubbed.
***This is not to be confused with the Faux Box, which does not exist. If you found that it was, you'll probably never speak French.
****Too many footnotes
But what's this?
Another reason I suspected the above was not authentically Asian, was that this wasn't. It was not an original Hal-Nintendo game, but merely a westernized facelift on an existing Japanese game that I guess was a bit too Japanese (and also had Sega logos in it), it is very possible (and very evident from the credits) that few, if any, of the original "Kirby people" were directly involved with it. I like to think that the task fell to whoever at Nintendo of America was willing to work through their lunch breaks one day. I probably spent more time writing about it than they did making it. Not that they didn't do a good job--
--there just wasn't a whole lot to do.
Somehow it's easier for me to believe that a colleague of Dr. Wily's would design a series of robots whose sole purpose was to match like colored beans together for the purposes of making robot slaves (and additionally that he'd make the most skilled among them resemble a chicken) than Kirby and foes putting their differences aside to play a game about matching like colored beans together for the purposes of winning a game about matching like colored beans together.
Scenario mode. I love that. You're not just matching beans against slightly less and less inhibited artificial intelligence, you're on an adventure!
Neither is any more logical a thing to refer to transparent lumps with eyes as, but "refugee beans" is certainly more fun to say. And 64x56 pixel robot portraits look slightly less dumb on the screen than blown up images of things that seemed insufficiently detailed at 16x16. Although it's never said outright, I am led to believe that the voice heard to say very, very dumb things throughout the game is Kirby's and... and I can't like anyone who talks like that.
I hope the last item was an instance of great minds thinking alike and not admiration and homage, as an English language bootlegged arcade version of Japanese Puyopuyo had voiceovers that were even worse. Instead of Kirby's derisive and threatening taunts of "yeth, watchout, here it cometh!" what sounds to be a fat kid with glasses named Arnold calls out while pinching his nose "Full power! I score! (or ice storm, like that's somehow better)" Oh yes, these encourage us and make us feel good about ourselves for playing so well! NAWT! Oh, Arnold, I hope I have not hurt your feelings with my cutting words. You sound so sincerely dismayed.
I'm ashamed of that paragraph.
I think the Genesis version wins again just on the basis of being made before the devisation of a cartridge capable of holding that much digital audio. Even if I'm wrong about who's saying what, Kirb's text dialogue bubbles are just as unlovable.
Don't listen, Kirby. It's a plant. They have no rights.
Many sport watching clopes disagree as to the origin of modern garbage speaking, and I tell you it is right here. Just like their special attacks in the Kirby games I'd rather be playing, Kirby absorbs the opponents' characteristics, molds them into situation specific insults and sends them right back at the aggressors, or, if you are an aggressor, right back at ya!
Ow, right to the point.
And I won't.