Where’s the fight?

February 12, 2013 at 6:14 am | Posted in 4kids, Airings and Dubs, Cinelume, Enchantix, Music, Nickelodeon, Opinions, Original Italian, Powers and Spells, Seasons and Movies, Winx Club | Leave a comment

[Note: This is a bit of a long rant, and I’ve included lots of videos and everything, hence the read more link.]

The Nickelodeon version of Winx Club has been hyped up a lot (this is something to do with the fact that it’s back in America, on cable TV, and it’s not 4kids), but I don’t honestly think it deserves that hype. Neither do I think it deserves the overzealous praise it’s received from some fans, and nor do I think previous versions of Winx Club, like the Cinelume version deserve the hate some Nick fans are giving them.

I’ll just list down which dubs of Winx Club I’ve watched here:

  • Season 1, 2, 3, and 4 in Italian, and the two movies in Italian – multiple times.
  • Season 1 and 3 of the 4kids dub.
  • Season 1, 2, 3, and 4 of the Cinelume dub – multiple times.
  • The two movies in English (not the Nick English, the English that comes with the DVD) – multiple times.
  • All the Nick specials and episodes right up to episode 13 – specials and season 3 episodes – more than twice.

There’s something I feel while watching Winx Club in Italian, and while watching the Cinelume dub. It sometimes makes an appearance while I’m catching some old 4kids episodes as well.

I feel a fight.

I feel energy. I feel passion. I feel a need that comes from the Winx, a need to do the right thing, and help people, because they can. I feel power, I feel magic. I feel courage, I feel the power of good over evil.

And all of this, all of what I feel – comes from the music, the voices, and the script (4kids was admittedly pretty awkward at times with the script, and I didn’t like that one as much as the Cinelume).

All I feel of the Nick version (and this might seem a bit harsh) is a bunch of pretty girls floating around in pretty outfits gushing. It’s far too childish. Much more than it was before.

I can’t explain this to you as well as I can show this to you. To understand what I’m saying, check out the videos below.

This is Bloom earning her Enchantix in Italian. Part of the appeal this has is in the wonderful Italian Enchantix song. It’s filled with raw power, and nothing else. But what I want you to listen to is not the song, not the sound effects, but Bloom’s voice in the beginning. I want you to listen to what she says. I’m not going to translate it because this isn’t a matter of translation, but I want you to listen to it and try to understand what you feel when you hear it.

[Here’s a longer clip for a better sample.]

I feel anger, and power. Just raw anger, and power. That’s it.

And that’s what Bloom’s meant to be feeling. She’s angry. So angry and so determined to beat Valtor that she earns her Enchantix. The power within her finally escapes, and she’s had it with the Trix and Valtor. She’s going to show them that she can defeat them.

Now, here’s the Cinelume. Skip directly to 0:44 for the comparison, or watch the whole thing if you want for a better voice sample.

Now, in her voice, you can her power, a certain steady calm, and determination. Which also works, and fits, remarkably well, considering she knows she can beat the Trix and Valtor. She knows she’s powerful, she knows she’s stronger, and she knows “Valtor will not win. It’s over.” The song used for Enchantix is also noticeably calmer and less angrier than the Italian version, which just adds to the atmosphere.

Here’s the 4kids:

I think this was a dud. Though I like the way Bloom conveys her line. And I have to admit, 4kids did a bad job with the Enchantix music. It doesn’t sound something befitting a transformation of power.

Now, here’s the Nick:

The voice is far too relaxed. Far too calm. There’s nothing showing that Bloom wants to fight this battle. She wants to defeat Valtor. Where did the bravery go? In essence, there’s no strength in Bloom’s voice. The Enchantix sequence is fantastic, and I like the dragon a lot, not to mention the music (I am so glad that they decided to use the Enchantix karaoke, it fits wonderfully).

But. Bloom’s grunts and screams are exaggerated, sometimes even over-exaggerated. There is nothing, in fact, to suggest that as an Enchantix fairy, Bloom is single-handedly able to defeat all three of the Trix. It sounds like she has to make a huge effort to do it, when really, she wouldn’t. She’s an Enchantix fairy, and she’s the guardian of the Dragon Flame (yes, this is the original version of things).

This is why I have almost no appreciation for the Nick dub of Winx Club. Don’t get me wrong – I’m glad it’s back in America, and the animation is wonderful. However, that’s not all that makes a good TV show good. There’s nothing in the way of voice acting, or music, that stands out. We’re lucky they kept the original Enchantix music and didn’t change it to something else. The Power of Charmix song? Catchy, but too cheesy. Too light-hearted.

As for the voice acting. Some people said it was emotionless and unconvincing. The example I gave above should suffice as my explanation as for why the Nick voice acting is far worse than the Cinelume one. But if you want another,

Yes. “Come on, girls, Magic Winx!” sounds far more enthusiastic than “This is serious. Magic Winx.” So does “Now everyone, together!” instead of “Hold back the wave. Together.”

Also,

(The first Winx form for me will always be just that: Winx. 🙂 )

In the original, Stella says: “LEAVE HER ALONE. Take us on instead.”

I’ve made my case here. I’ll leave you to your choices. Let me know which one you think is better.

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