How Not to Get Money

[Blaugust Day 28]

Much like Steam before it, CrunchyRoll has completely supplanted any desire of mine to pirate its product – in this case, anime. It was really a combination of things, as it was getting annoying finding anime torrents with more than 4-5 seeders, having to download 10+ GB worth of show that you’re going to end up deleting anyway, bad fan subs, missing episodes, and so on.

#Firstworldpirateproblems, truly.

Then here came CrunchyRoll with streaming content, professional subbing, and even simulcasts if you wanted to pay for Premium. If you didn’t want to pay, you could still watch the shows of your choice, with ads. Ads which, incidentally, are completely blocked with AdBlockPlus such that they barely register as a flicker on the screen.

Originally, I think I was tricked into subscribing for CrunchyRoll Premium in that they were holding the final episode of the show I was watching hostage. It might have been legitimate, in that the show just ended in Japan, and Premium users get access to the latest episode at least a week before it goes “free.” Whatever the reason, I signed up for the “free trial” of Premium and then stayed subscribed ever since. I consider it a fairly good value overall, especially since I can watch everything in 1080p. You wouldn’t think resolution matters in hand-drawn content, but you would be surprised. Or maybe that was just me being surprised.

I usually watch 1-2 episodes of some random show or another during dinner, which means I can plow through an entire series in a week or two. This wasn’t a problem, until it kinda was: I had watched just about everything ever recommended to me… that plays on CrunchyRoll.

Now I wanted to watch Steins;Gate. Enter FUNimation:

Spoilers!

Spoilers! …not really, this is episode 2.

Which, incidentally, plays anime through Hulu.

Have you ever been in a situation where a friend or coworker was really shit-talking someone bad, and you nod your head, but in the back of your mind you’re thinking “Surely some of that is exaggeration. Nobody is that awful.” And some time passes before you encounter that person, so you sorta forget about them. Then you finally meet them and realize “holy shit, they really are that awful! I regret everything!”

So, yeah, Hulu.

Are you serious?

Are you serious?

I heard Hulu was bad with ads, but my mind is still reeling from this encounter. I was trying to watch Steins;Gate, which is already hard enough to follow without two minutes, forty seconds of unskippable ads every four minutes of show. I understand that that’s “normal” television show content-to-ad ratios (22 min of show, 8 of ads), but that is also precisely why I don’t watch television. I have never bought cable my whole adult life and hopefully never will.

Really, you almost have to experience this abomination for yourself:

How about no?

How about no?

Apparently AdBlockPlus will block some ads but not others. I could not verify it for sure, but I’m also convinced that the timer resets sometimes when I’m Alt-Tabbed and it tries to cycle into another ad that it cannot display. At least, it certainly feels that way. Or perhaps I am so used to, you know, the internet that waiting 150 seconds for the content I want to load simply feels like an eternity.

Like CrunchyRoll, FUNimation has a Premium version that supposedly removes the ads. Given how much shit I’ve heard about Hulu, and how Hulu expressly states that “Some shows will still serve ads to subscribers,” I have little inclination to believe them.

So congrats, FUNimation/Hulu, for being goddamn annoying enough that this becomes a better alternative once again:

Just in time.

Just in time.

It took about 35 minutes to download that. Or about four episodes worth of Hulu advertising.

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Posted on August 28, 2015, in Commentary and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 8 Comments.

  1. Yeah, I love CrunchyRoll, but it has become a lot harder to watch anything that isn’t featured on there. I like to try out new anime when lists release, but a lot of those are spotty to access. It sucks!

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    • Yeah, it’s definitely a Netflix-esque model rather than a repository of anime. Not a lot of classics on there. Since they folded the Manga section into the Premium subscription, I also checked on that side of things and… ugh. There is basically 1-2 popular manga and a whole lot of nothing else.

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  2. I also sub to crunchyroll, and have for awhile for pretty much the same reason (got tired of bad torrents). And yeah the ads on Hulu drive me nuts, I pay for the premium which one would think would cover the advertising costs. Though I don’t watch as much of the anime content on Hulu, but the ads are on pretty much everything else which is annoying. I haven’t looked in to the Funimation premium though, since I’m not sure what content they have that isn’t already on crunchyroll.

    I’d seriously enjoy/use Hulu a lot more if they didn’t have the ads, but at the same time I don’t really plan to go back to torrents.

    Side note: I like the avatar. FLCL is seriously one of my favorite anime’s.

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  3. I tried the CrunchyRoll app not long after it added Chromecast support just to see how it was and promptly uninstalled it after I had to sit through just as much ad time as Hulu subjects you to, so I totally get it. To me though it felt like more ad time than regular TV ever had, I think because they tend to do one commercial then a short burst of content, not longish stretches of either content or ads. At the same time though, I don’t watch much anime so I wasn’t all that put out when I uninstalled it.

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  4. Funimation has its own separate site and players. I use that. For the most part that works fine, and it has no ads. I’d skip the Hulu part of things.

    The only thing negative I can say about Funimation is that you have to pay $10 for their iOS app, and that app is a bit flaky.

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