alt.fan.utena Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Updated 5 October 2005
Current version: 2.2
Original Author: SenshiNeko
Editor: Death Quaker (firstname.lastname@example.org)
This document also available in text format: http://www.deathquaker.org/utena/AFUFAQ.txt
Q: I can't find "alt.fan.utena" in the list of newsgroups available at my Internet Service Provider. How can I subscribe to it?
A: Email or call your ISP and ask them politely to add AFU to their newsgroup feed. If they need the control message, it is archived at http://www.deathquaker.org/utena/AFUcontrol.txt . If you do not have access to Usenet or AFU, there are a growing number of World Wide Web-based services which will allow you to read and post to newsgroups (some will only allow you to read them). For example, a good read-only service is at Xasa (http://www.xasa.com/grupos/en/alt/fanr-fanz), and (depending on your level of patience) you can read and post at Google Groups (http://groups-beta.google.com).
Q: Where can I find the Utena video game for the Sega Saturn?
A: This Japanese game is very difficult to find; most people who are lucky enough to have found it bought it off of e-Bay.
Q: Where can I find Utena fansubs?
A: Given the entire series is now commercially distributed by Central Park Media/Software Sculptors, sources for fansubs will no longer be listed here. Please support the creators and distributors of anime by buying it when you can.
Q: Where can I find the Utena Musical?
A: This live-action musical amateur production has never been officially distributed, although bootleg copies of the raw Japanese are in circulation. We know of no place for download. Try friends or conventions for free bootleg copies (remember you should never pay for fan-distributed copies beyind covering cost of a blank CD and shipping). Anime Lyrics (http://www.animelyrics.com) has the lyrics for many of the songs from the musical, and you may be able to find the soundtrack at conventions or in a good import store.
Q: What Utena products are available and where can I get them?
A: The TV series, mangas, and movie are widely available in the U.S. and worldwide. Most any appropriate retailer will carry them or can order them for you, and you can order them directly from the distributor as well (in the U.S., Central Park Media for the anime and Viz Comics for the manga). You should also be able to find the soundtracks from most anime soundtrack dealers. See Section 10 for a listing of Utena Products.
If you are looking for discounts, try specialized DVD retailers and anime conventions. I (Death Quaker) have had good luck finding discounts at Otakon (a large anime convention in Baltimore), some of which were found right at the Central Park Media Stand. One trick for buying discount DVDs at cons is to wait until the last day of the con; dealers will mark off their stock to try and get rid of as much as possible before they have to pack up and go home.
Many Japanese-only products can be found easily enough at conventions and specialty import dealers. You may also have some luck finding more rare items or highly discounted items on e-Bay, but as with all things e-Bay, caveat emptur.
These sites are good to find more general information on the series; some of the more "specialized" sites provide specific information Utena fans may be looking for, such as translations of songs and song tracks. Feel free to submit suggestions for this list, although we are trying to keep it small for ease of keeping it updated. We will not list fan work sites because what constitutes "good" fanwork is too subjective for us to judge as a group. As of October 5, 2005:
Ikuniweb: http://www.jrt.co.jp/yos/ikuniweb/ikuniweb_e/topmenu/etopmenu.html - the official Web site of director Kunihiko Ikuhara. Features some original Utena art by manga artist/Be-Papas member Chiho Saito.
The Central Park Media Utena TV Series Site: http://www.utenatv.com - Includes brief character summaries, desktop wallpapers, links to the CPM store, etc.
The CPM Utena Movie Site: http://www.utenamovie.com - Story and character summaries, links, etc. Note: Shockwave Flash-intensive (the TV series site is not).
Empty Movement: http://www.ohtori.nu - A huge Utena fansite including an extensive art gallery, essays, audiology and the original Yasuyuki Sato fan-translated scripts!
The Utena Net: http://www.utena.net - Features character shrines and an extensive list of links; it's outdated and unlikely to be updated any time soon, but still is a useful source for a lot of information and links.
Anj's Quick'n Dirty Utena Page: http://www.geocities.com/lunamurphy/ost_index.html - Track listings and their translations for Original Soundtracks (OSTs) 1-8 and the Vocal Collection. DQ has a mirror of this site at http://www.deathquaker.org/utena/ost_index.html
Cantarella Cookie: http://cyborgmermaid.tripod.com/cantarella/ - Fan translations of songs on the various Utena soundtracks.
Adolescence Rush: http://www.rushita.com/sm/adolescence.html - Scans of piano sheet music for songs from the Utena movie.
The Satellite of Revolution: http://www.mindspring.com/~khabal/www/rst3k.htm - The Satellite is a universally-loved site of MSTed fanfics and will provide you with lots of laughs. Okay, I know we said we weren't going to list fanworks, but I was bribed with Chocolate-Covered-Shiori to list just this one. ^^
cbel's Utena Directory: http://www.cbel.com/revolutionary_girl_utena - This contains links to over 250 Utena-related Web sites. It is not always accurate, but they do update it from time to time, and it will give you lots of links for fansites, character shrines, and more.
The Utena Icons Community: http://www.livejournal.com/community/utena_icons
The Wakaba Genki Preservation Society (not very active): http://www.livejournal.com/community/wgps
10a. Utena Products Availabile in the U.S.
The Anime: From Central Park Media:
- Revolutionary Girl Utena: The Rose Collection DVD Boxed Set, ISBN 1-57800-578-7. This 3 disc set includes Episodes 1-13 of the TV series and the "limited edition" release of Utena: the Movie (aka Adolescence Mokushiroku). Retail $79.95. (You can get these discs separately, but the non-box set versions are becoming harder to find; besides, it is much cheaper to buy them as a box set -- you basically get the movie for free. The VHS box set of the Student Council Arc is out of print, although you might still find it in stock somewhere.)
- Revolutionary Girl Utena: The Black Rose Saga DVD Collection, ISBN 1-57800-564-7. This 4 disc set includes episodes 14-26 of the TV series, plus extras such as interviews with Kunihiko Ikuhara, dub actor interviews, summaries and photo galleries, etc. Each disc is also available individually (entitled "The Black Rose Blooms," "Impatience and Longing," "Darkness Beckoning," and "The Beginning of the End" respectively, but if you can afford it it's more economic to buy the box set). $99.95 for the box set, or $29.95 for an individual disc.
- Revolutionary Girl Utena: The Apocalypse Saga DVD Collection, ISBN 1-57800-565-5. This 4 disc set includes episodes 27-39 as well as similar extras listed above, and commentary from Chiho Saito and Kunihiko Ikuhara for the final two episodes. Each disc is also available individually (in chrono order: "Temptation" [SEE ALSO below], "Unveiling," "Revelation," and "Finale"). $99.95 for the box set, or $29.95 per disc.
- Revolutionary Girl Utena: Temptation Limited Edition w/ Apocalypse Saga Box and T-Shirt, ISBN 1-57800-570-1. This is just the first disc of the Apocalypse Saga (eps. 27-29), a box to hold four discs, and a black "limited edition" t-shirt featuring Utena sandwiched between Touga and Saionji. $34.95. Not economical in the least, but you get a t-shirt.
The Manga: From Viz Media:
Viz originally published the Utena manga in its magazine, Animerica Extra! Back issues of this magazine are still available through the Viz Website at http://www.viz.com; some of them feature original Chiho Saito artwork on the covers. For simplicity's sake, however, I am only listing the specific information for the manga as it was later released in trade paperback format. Where it applies, I am listing information for the "second edition" of the trade paperback release; the first three manga volumes originally got published in an older and more expensive format and were re-released when they switched formats. Beyond a minor difference in size, the first and second editions are no different so if you want to get the manga, save yourself five bucks and be sure to get the second edition volumes!
- Revolutionary Girl Utena Volume 1: To Till, ISBN 1569319642. 200 pages. Retail $9.95
- Revolutionary Girl Utena Volume 2: To Plant, ISBN 1591162068. 200 pages. Retail $9.95
- Revolutionary Girl Utena VOlume 3: To Sprout, ISBN 1591162076. 200 pages. Retail $9.95
- Revolutionary Girl Utena Volume 4: To Bud, ISBN 1591160685. 200 pages. Retail $9.95
- Revolutionary Girl Utena Volume 5: To Blossom, ISBN 1591161452. 150 pages. Retail $9.95. Note: In addition to the finale to the original manga series, also includes the manga "shorts" introducing Mikage and Ruka.
- Revolutionary Girl Utena: The Adolescence of Utena, ISBN 1591165008. 192 pages. Retail $9.95. Rated for Older Teens. This is the "movie manga" and is sort of what the movie would have been like with fewer characters and if it had actually made some kind of sense.
Utena Soundtracks and other Music:
(Note: as far as I know, these soundtracks are completely identical to the original Japanese releases, featuring the same music and art; the liner notes and tracklists simply have been translated into English.)
Revolutionary Girl Utena Original Soundtrack, 36 tracks, ISBN 13023522626, Retail $14.98. This is the American release of the first soundtrack, featuring music from episodes 1-13.
Utena Original Soundtrack 2: Virtual Star Embryology, 28 tracks, Retail $14.98. Music from episodes 14-22.
Utena the Movie Original Soundtrack: Adolescence of Utena ADOLESCENCE RUSH, 14 tracks, Retail $14.98. The soundtrack for the Utena movie, Adolescence Mokushiroku.
Utena Original Soundtrack: Angel Creation Namely Light, 12 tracks, Retail $14.98. Music from the final "Revolution" story arc. (This is technically the fourth soundtrack according to the Japanese releases, but as far as I've been able to find, Geneon did not release the third one, which has the "Akio Car arc" music.)
From Jellybean Records: Animetoonz Presents Kikuko Inoue, no ISBN avail, Retail $13.98. This is an anthology of anime theme songs performed by Kikuko Inoue and includes the Utena ending theme "Virtual Hassei-Gaku"
From Jellybean Records: Animetoonz, no ISBN avail, Retail $24.98. A two disc set which includes the Kikuko Inoue disc above and another disc featuring songs by Maria Kawamura she doesn't sing any Utena songs on this, but she's the voice for Mamiya and one of the Shadow Girls!
Also: there are 5 other Utena soundtracks that to my knowledge have no "official" American release version. They were originally made by King Records/Starchild, but there are also copies produced by Son May that are sometimes easy to find at anime/import stores. For titles and track listings, see Anj's Quick and Dirty Utena Page. AFUer E. Liddell has pointed out that for the fifth soundtrack, the original printing was a two-disc set, but the Son May version is only a one-disc set.
There is also a new "Best of" CD released as part of a "Star Mania Series" of soundtracks. AFUer Sunnie says it's available here: http://www.cdjapan.co.jp/detailview.html?KEY=KICA-727&ref=myp Other Utena Products: From Guardians of Order: BESM/Ultimate Fan Guides:
These are books published in the US/Canada; they include episode and character synopses as well as a rules/statistics section for playing the role-playing game "Big Eyes, Small Mouth" in the Utenaverse.
Revolutionary Girl Utena, Book 1 (AKA BESM Revolutionary Girl Utena - The Rose Collection) by Michelle Lyons and Emily Dresner-Thornber. ISBN 1894525809. Trade paperback, glossy color and black and white pages, 96 pages. Retail $19.95
Revolutionary Girl Utena, Book 2 (AKA BESM Revolutionary Girl Utena - The Black Rose Blooms) by Emily Dresner-Thornber (note some list Lyons as the author but she was not involved in writing this book). ISBN 1894525965. Trade paperback, glossy color and black and white pages, 96 pages. Retail $19.95
Revolutionary Girl Utena, Book 3 (AKA BESM Revolutionary Girl Utena - The Apocalypse Saga) by Emily Dresner-Thornber. ISBN 1894938143. Trade paperback, glossy color and black and white pages, 96 pages. Retail $19.95
From Viz Media: Primographies (sort of like a lithograph, apparently) Revolutionary Girl Utena Primography. Limited Edition. A signed and numbered piece of art by Chiho Saito, comes in a black frame 23 1/8" x 17 3/4". Its MSRP is $299.95 but apparently if purchased from Viz (where I found it), they're selling it for only $59.99.
10b. Utena Products from Japan
(Note: I don't have a whole lot of info on these; anyone who can provide any will be owed much gratitude)
Soundtracks: See soundtracks above. These can often be found at anime import stores and the like, as well as Web sites like CD Japan.
The Art of Utena: Includes art and sketchwork from both the movie and the TV series.
Utena This is Animation: A movie art book
I've found these and one or two other art books at conventions and anime specialty stores.
At various points in time, Utena signet rings (both silver and black) have been fashioned; the best and easiest place to find these is on e-Bay.
- AFAIK: As far as I know
- AFU: alt.fan.utena
- BR: Black Rose (as in the "BR Arc")
- BTW: By the way
- EP(S): Episode(s)
- IIRC: If I recall correctly
- IM(H)O: In my (humble) opinion
- JP: Japanese
- LMAO: Laughing My Arse Off
- LOL: Laughing out loud
- NA: North America
- NG: Newsgroup
- RGU: Revolutionary Girl Utena
- ROTFL: Rolling on the floor laughing
- SC: Student Council
- SKU: Shoujo Kakumei Utena
- YKYWTMUW: "You know you watch too much Utena when..."
- Fan service: At its most basic, fan service is the gratuitous display of (usually) female characters in such a way as to show their panties, other undergarments, or bare skin. However, frontal (and usually undetailed) nudity is pretty much the limit.
- Fandub: This is an dub of an original show made by fans who lend their voices to the project. Fans are not usually professional voice actors, but they do put in a lot of effort making the fandubs.
- Fansub: A subtitled version of a show, made by a fan for the benefit of other fans. It is not intended to be a profit making effort if purchased, the price of a fansub should be equivalent to the price of a blank tape or CD plus shipping.
- Lemon: A "hentai" or pornographic piece of anime fan fiction.
- Lime: A very sexually suggestive piece of anime fan fiction that isn't quite as explicit as a Lemon. Also a character in Saber Marionette J.
- OAV/OVA: Original Animated Video (or Original Video Animation). An anime intended to be released only on video, not on TV or theaters (OAVs are sometimes used, however, as a "test run" to see if a TV series would do well).
- Superdeformed/SD: A style of Japanese comic art that is particularly cutesy, with the head quite large and other features less detailed. Also called "chibi" (see below).
Editor's note: I do not speak Japanese, beyond a handful of phrases. Most of us don't. I cannot guarantee accuracy of the translations here, but we've done our best, and I've tried to check with people more knowledgeable than I on some of these translations where possible. Please let us know if you think anything is inaccurate and why.
- Arigato: Thank you (Domo arigato = Thank you very much)
- Baka: Stupid, moron, idiot (a fluent friend of mine tells me this is far more insulting in Japan than seems to be indicated in anime)
- Bara: Rose
- Bara no hanayome: The Rose Bride
- Bara no kokuin: The Rose Crest or Rose Signet (the ring all duellists wear)
- Bishoujo: Beautiful (young) girl
- Bishounen: Beautiful (young) boy
- Bokken: A wooden practice sword
- -chan: A dimunitive honorific most easily translated as "Little"; usually used in addressing children and girls; female students who are close to each other sometimes call each other "-chan," as, sometimes, do lovers. The phrase is seldom used in Utena.
- Chibi: short person, "miniaturized" person; a "chibi" drawing of an anime character is also called "superdeformed" (see above section). Also a common name for a cat in Japan.
- Demo: But...
- Doko: Where?
- Ecchi: How the Japanese pronounce the letter "H" which is the first letter of the word "hentai" (see below). Therefore, ecchi is a "little bit" hentai basically, mild sexual innuendo and teasing.
- Eigo: English
- Fuku: clothes, uniform e.g., the Ohtori Academy fuku (school uniform)
- Gakuen: school e.g., "Ohtori Gakuen" is "Ohtori Academy"
- Gomen: Sorry ("Gomen Nasai" = "I'm very sorry")
- Hai: Yes
- Hentai: Sexually perverted and/or explicit
- Hime: Princess (the specific social station)
- Hiragana: A Japanese syllabic "alphabet" used to write native words.
- Ichiban: The first, the best, number one!
- Iie: No
- Imouto: Little sister
- Kanji: Japanese system of writing using (sometimes modified) Chinese characters. There are almost 2000 kanji.
- Katakana: A Japanese syllabic "alphabet" used to write foreign or unusual words, onamatopoetic sounds, and for emphasis (e.g., "Anthy" is spelled in katakana because her name is based on a Greek word).
- Kawaii: Cute
- Kirei: Pretty
- Konnichiwa: Good day, Hello
- Kowai: scary, frightening, Chibi-Usa
- Kudasai: Please
- -kun: An honorific used either to address a male well known to you or to address a junior colleague of either sex
- Kuro bara: Black Rose
- Manga: Comics; used by Americans to describe comics from Japan or Japanese comic-art style
- Minna: Everyone
- Nani: What?
- Ne: "... right?" or "hey."
- Ohayo: Good morning
- Onegai: Please, when making a request
- Otaku: A Japanese word that many American anime fans think of as meaning "big anime fan." In Japanese it literally is an informal "you" word, more or less translating to "homeboy/hey you" HOWEVER, beyond that it has a connotation meaning tremendous addict/fanatic who probably will never be willingly touched by a heterosexual member of the opposite sex.
- Onee-sama: Elder sister (a more informal version is "onee-chan" or "big sis")
- Onii-sama: Elder Brother. Something Nanami says every five minutes, ne? (Informally, "onii-chan, or "big bro." Interestingly no one uses the diminutive form in Utena.)
- Ouji-sama: Prince (or more generally, a nobleman, king, etc.)
- Oujo-sama: Princess (or as above)
- Piku: To shake or tremble, or act like the pokemon Pikachu.
- Romaji or romanji: Japanese spelled out with Roman letters (e.g., how all the Japanese words are written in this glossary)
- -sama: Ostensibly "lord/lady" but a complex phrase that basically subordinates oneself to the person one is calling "-sama." It can be used respectfully to address a person of high station, but can also be used "cutsily" by someone enamoured of someone else, e.g., traditionally, by a wife to her husband. In the latter case, it is usually translated as something like "dear." When Wakaba and the other girls call Utena "Utena-sama" they're using the "cutesy" meaning of the phrase, whereas Anthy uses it in the formal sense, more or less calling Utena "Lady" or "Mistress." It is very rarely used in RL Japanese conversation.
- -san: A polite, very commonly used honorific more or less meaning "Mister" or "Miss."
- Seitokai: Student Council
- Seitokaijo: Student Council President
- Sekai no hate: World's End (End of the World)
- sempai: Elder/Senior/Mentor, such as "Jury-sempai." In anime, school-age characters often use to refer to an older classmate, particularly one they look up to.
- Sensei: Teacher/Professor/Doctor/Author
- Seiyuu: Voice actor/actress (literally means "radio voice")
- Sayonara: Good bye
- Sugoi: Cool, amazing
- Sumimasen: Excuse me / I'm sorry
The original author, SenshiNeko, admits to shamelessly adapting most of the original FAQ from the alt.fan.sailor-moon MicroFAQ, with permission from Henry D. Archut, maintainer of said AFSM uFAQ. Death Quaker has further adapted and edited SenshiNeko's FAQ for the current needs of AFU. Death Quaker does wish to give SenshiNeko all due respect for his contributions to AFU years ago, so thank you, SenshiNeko.
The following people have provided their invaluable assistance and suggestions for the AFU FAQ:
Jennifer Brill, original proponent of AFU.
Many AFU members of 2005, especially-
E. Liddell, who pointed out that we actually had a FAQ and that it was woefully out of date and for providing useful soundtrack info and for doing arithmetic far too complicated for DQ's small mind to comprehend;
OnsenMark for correcting an embarrassing moment of gender confusion;
Sephigirl, who started the whole revision process by discussing the 'Netiquette of Spoiler Space and for offering the most detailed suggestions during the FAQ-editing process. Sunnie and Gio for providing info on the Utena "Best of" soundtrack.
Please submit any additional questions, corrections, suggestions and updates for this FAQ to the FAQ thread on AFU or, if you prefer, e-mail them directly to Death Quaker (email@example.com).
Shoujo Kakumei Utena - la fillette revolutionnaire is copyright 1997 to Chiho Saito/ Shogakukan/Shokaku/ TV Tokyo.
Go back to the Table of Contents