1983 – 2009—Over thirty-five challenges in twenty states since the book’s publication.
2009—Challenged in the Newman-Crows Landing School District on a required reading list presented by the Orestimba High English Department. A trustee questioned the qualifications of Orestimba staff to teach a novel depicting African American culture. (CA)
1976 – 1994—Challenged five times in five states. (NY, GA, TX, MD, SC)
1976—Removed from Island Trees School Union Free District High School library along with nine other titles because they were considered “immoral, anti-American, anti-Christian, or just plain filthy.” (NY)
1997—Challenged for sexual explicitness, but retained on the Stonewall Jackson High School’s academically advanced reading list in Brentsville. A parent objected to the novel’s language and sexual explicitness.
1994 – 2007—Challenged eleven times in nine states since publication. (AK, PA, FL, MA, MD, NH, CA, CO, MI)
2005—Banned from the Littleton curriculum and library shelves after complaints about its explicit sex, including the rape of an eleven-year-old girl by her father. (CO)
2013— The board of education president in Ohio is criticizing the inclusion of the book on the Common Core Standard’s recommended reading list for 11th-graders, labeling the controversial work “pornographic,” and wishes to ban it from the classroom.
1993 – 2009—Challenged in five states due to its sexually explicitly language. (OH, GA, FL, MD, MI)
1998—Removed from the St. Mary’s County Schools’ approved text list by the school superintendent overruling a faculty committee recommendation. Complaints referred to the novel as “filth,” “trash,” and “repulsive.” (MD)
2000—Challenged on the Poolesville High School reading list because of the book’s sexual content and language. On October 5, 2000, Montgomery County Circuit Court Judge Paul McGuckian dismissed the bid to band the work from the curriculum. The school, however, decided to remove the book from the summer reading list. (MD)
2005—Challenged, but retained at Fayetteville High School despite a parent’s complaint that it was sexually explicit. The complainant also submitted a list of more than fifty books, citing the books as too sexually explicit and promoting homosexuality. (AL)
The Best Anime You’re Not Watching: Ghost Stories (ADV Dub)
Happy Halloween! In honor of this day of spooks and giggles, let’s honor an anime that’s a bit low on spooks and VERY heavy on the giggles: Ghost Stories!
Ghost Stories follows fifth-grader Satsuki and her little brother Keiichirou as they move to a new town and discover their school is haunted. Their late mother, who went to the same school as a child, apparently was an avid exorcist in her day and left behind a diary telling how to exorcise all of the ghosts and spirits. With their next door neighbor Hajime, self-proclaimed paranormal investigator Leo, responsible sixth-grade psychic Momoko, and a talking cat named Amanojaku, Satsuki and Keiichirou set out to get rid of all the ghouls plaguing their school and town.
Ghost Stories premiered in Japan in October 2000. And boy did it suck. The characters were bland and in some cases annoying, plot holes were abundant, multiple supernatural things happened with no rhyme or reason, and the soundtrack consisted of just 3 or 4 songs repeated over and over.
Needless to say, it bombed. HARD. In fact, it was selling so poorly the Japanese company that made it was losing money. At that point, they contacted anime dubbing company ADV Films and told them this:
“We literally don’t care what you do with this show; we just need you to make it sell so we can break even.”
ADV obliged and created the most hilarious thing ever to grace the anime dubbing world.
Oh, not because it was so badly dubbed it was good. In fact, it was an amazing dub. The English dub actors basically improvised almost all of their lines and turned the show from a sub-par horror series into a black comedy, which resulted in lines like this:
The show is basically like a professionally done abridged series. And it is brilliant. My personal favorite character from the dubbed version is Momoko, who they turned into a complete Jesus-freak who’s always trying to convert her friends every second she’s on screen.
Go find this dub on YouTube. Trust me; you won’t regret it. Fair warning though: the first half isn’t really as funny since the dub actors were probably still getting used to the type of dub they were doing. But during the second half, when they’re fully into it, it is HILARIOUS.