Why does parts of the world suffer from lack of older anime?


i am a huge fan of anime back from late 80's to mid 90's... you would think in this day and age it would be easy to purchase and add to the collection

every so often i do random searches to see if there is any progress in that department, being in the uk i would have thought the library of older titles would be thick and fast... but they arnt!

the only place i can seem to find blu rays of older titles are from diskotek region A locked

why arnt they released to the rest of the world??? i really miss the older titles and always have the urge to look back and rewatch my favourites.

is it as simple as distribution issues, ownership of rights?... or a simple lack of demand?

i would love to go back and rewatch devilman, 3x3 eyes, goku midnight eye, fist of the north star, dominion tank police... the list goes on

is there any reasons? can anyone shed some light on this please?!

Professor Irony

I think you've answered your own question there, to be honest. Generally, it just seems like the time and cost of acquiring the rights to, and producing a new release of an older title isn't economical unless it's a really big name like Bebop or Evangelion.

It's interesting that Manga UK recently did try rereleasing Wicked City (one of their last releases before being fully absorbed into Funimation?), but the release was heavily criticised for its handling of the different dub tracks and included extras. Based on that, I guess another thing you have to consider is that the people who want a physical release now tend to be very demanding, and also very vocal about the product if it isn't right, so it's very possible that companies who could potentially put things out just don't want to deal with that kind of market.


Karamatsu Boy
It costs the same (a lot) to get an old show through the BBFC as it does for a newer show, and that's compounded by the fact that older series often ran longer which makes it even pricier to get them certified. At the same time, fewer people will buy sets of older shows compared to the newest, flashiest content which appeals to a younger audience with no nostalgic attachment to the cel era. It doesn't make much commercial sense in the UK, unfortunately, which means that most fans import Discotek content - thus compounding the problem because that shrinks the potential audience of buyers in the UK further! It's trivially easy to bypass the region lock (if you can afford to import, buying a region A or region selectable player usually isn't a huge investment over the course of your collecting) so if anybody really wanted a UK classic title to do well it would have to be a big show (expensive to license) or something obscure that Discotek had passed over. And even then, some 'forgotten' gems that we'd love to have in the UK are considered valuable classics in Japan so the licensing costs would be disproportionately high.

Easier to license some dodgy fan service light novel adaptation with a built-in audience and watch it pay for itself. A shame, as I like older stuff too, but the costs of getting it to the UK make it impractical most of the time :/

I wish we could be included in Retrocrush as that would be a nice solution; splitting streaming rights by region rather than language always seems dumb.

They don't sell, or UK distributors don't think they will, is the simple answer.

i would love to go back and rewatch devilman, 3x3 eyes, goku midnight eye, fist of the north star, dominion tank police... the list goes on
Of those you mentioned, only Devilman and FotNS have US Blu-ray releases. I have no idea why nobody here wants FotNS as I'm sure that would sell better than a lot of the newer stuff we get.

I know that Dominion Tank Police resides in eternal licensing Hell so that may never resurface. 3x3 Eyes has such terrible looking masters I don't think even Discotek want to touch it.

As Prof mentioned, we did get a trio of Kawajiri anime recently: Wicked City, Demon City, and Cyber City. And El Hazard is coming soon.


It is a real shame nothing is done as they get lost in time unless people have it on VHS and have mediocre quality versions.. really saddens me an amazing part of manga's history is pretty much lost


I honestly think we're really lucky to get UK releases of the 80s Gundams and things like Cyber City Oedo or Nadia Secret of Blue Wter. I've picked up the US releases of things like Galaxy Express 999, Patlabor and Dunbine (but Ideon still evades me) because I'd never expect a release in this country. There's a small niche interest in older titles in the USA, but a tiny tiny niche here in the UK.