Welcome back from GDC!
Over the weekend, I watched Heroes for the first time. The first season just came out on DVD here, so I rented the first DVD. IT WAS SO DISAPPOINTING. When watching TV shows, suspension of disbelief is necessary. Sure, I'm willing to let it slide that the show has mountains in Odessa, Texas. The Tokyo stuff is really painful. Sure, the show is comic bookish, so we'll let the inane Tokyo city scenes pass. Clearly, the show doesn't have enough money to fly to Japan to film the show. Totally understandable.
Even these questions can somewhat be excused: Why is there a LARGE digital clock on the Tokyo Metro subway car? (There's not.) Why do the Japanese office workers sit in cubicles? (Traditionally, Japanese offices don't use cubicles, but sit with their desks grouped close together in the center of the room.) Why does Hiro's clock have kanji numbers on it? (Japanese people use regular clocks!) Why does Hiro use a Samsung computer? (Never even seen one in Japan.) And why don't the "Japanese" people on the escalator line-up and stand on one side? (Ungh.)
So, yah, those are just "little" things. Not so important. What really makes it hard to watch is Hiro's friend, Ando. His Japanese accent is pretty horrible, and he sounds like foreigner speaking Japanese. Every time he opens his mouth, it totally ruins the illusion. Having a native-sounding Japanese accent ain't easy! In English, so many different people speak it, so we're used to hearing different accents. Granted, there are different accents in Japanese — different regional accents spoken by Japanese folks. So it's pretty easy to pick out someone who hasn't spent the majority of their life in Japan, gotten educated in Japan, blah, blah. In fact, even Hiro's accent sounds kinda "off" — that's cause he only lived in Japan until he was six!
Anyway, the actor who plays Ando can't speak the language and didn't spend most of his life in Japan, so it's not his fault. I'm sure he's doing the best he can! The thing that totally miffs me: If you're going to have someone speak pretty much Japanese on your show, why not, you know, get a real Japanese person? (Asian people are different! Don't TV people realise that?!) Seems like the show's very much half-assing it. Dunno, should I stick it out and watch the rest? Does it get better? Do they kill off that Ando guy?