Which translations do you prefer for characters' names?

Discussion regarding the entirety of the franchise in a general (meta) sense, including such aspects as: production, trends, merchandise, fan culture, and more.

Moderators: Kanzenshuu Staff, General Help

User avatar
successoroffate
OMG CRAZY REG
Posts: 906
Joined: Thu Jul 03, 2014 8:10 pm

Re: Which translations do you prefer for characters' names?

Post by successoroffate » Tue Dec 15, 2015 3:51 pm

VegettoEX wrote:
successoroffate wrote:After 20 years, a fan sub changes something to a name that I am not used
But that's the thing. They're not "changing" anything -- they're actually translating stuff.

But translating sometimes does not do any favors. Some of the names are basically puns which translating to another market like the US (just to use as an example)would not make any sense. Just like calling Vegeta "Vegetable" and Freeza "Freezer" (Freezer as the home/kitchen appliance, which is the LatinAmerican name and people really see it as a pun).

One last thing, this is all matter of taste but a fan sub is not really the best place to use as an example just like someone said above.
Big Green: Do whateveryoulike, Ghos
Broly: haha He calls me a goohst, but IMMMD DA DEVVVVAAALLL! RAHAHAHAHA!
-----
Trunks: "Dhe computer selffishy intesnafiy dosuementos."
Android 13: Yum Boy
-----
Vegeta: The Legendary Warrior of SpaZe.

User avatar
Adamant
I Live Here
Posts: 2949
Joined: Wed Jan 21, 2004 1:02 pm
Location: Viking Land
Contact:

Re: Which translations do you prefer for characters' names?

Post by Adamant » Tue Dec 15, 2015 3:52 pm

VegettoEX wrote:
Adamant wrote:
LuckyCat wrote:I admit, I was a bit miffed when people brought up "Hero" from the 23rd Budoukai, because I never watched the Dragonball dub, but no biggie.
...what?
FUNimation:

(1) Adapted/changed Tsuru-sen'nin as "Master Shen"
(2) Therefore decided to change the alias of "Shen" in the 23rd tournament to "Hero"
Huh. Had no idea. Would've been confused as hell had someone randomly namedropped either of those dub names.
Satan wrote:Lortedrøm! Bøh slog min datter ihjel! Hvad bilder du dig ind, Bøh?! Nu kommer Super-Satan og rydder op!

User avatar
Gaffer Tape
Born 'n Bred Here
Posts: 5907
Joined: Tue Dec 08, 2009 5:25 pm
Contact:

Re: Which translations do you prefer for characters' names?

Post by Gaffer Tape » Tue Dec 15, 2015 3:56 pm

Adamant wrote:Huh. Had no idea. Would've been confused as hell had someone randomly namedropped either of those dub names.
Yeah, I have the same problem most of the time when I hear someone say "Spike." I'm always like, "Who the hell is that?" And then I either remember or am reminded that that's what FUNimation renamed Akkuman.
Do you follow the most comprehensive and entertaining Dragon Ball analysis series on YouTube? If you do, you're smart and awesome and fairly attractive. If not, see what all the fuss is about without even having to leave Kanzenshuu:

MistareFusion's Dragon Ball Dissection Series Discussion Thread! (Updated 7/6/20!)
Current Episode: Overloading on Gods - Dragon Ball Dissection: The Majin Boo Arc Part 6!

User avatar
EmmaWinters
Moderator
Posts: 863
Joined: Fri Dec 05, 2014 11:10 pm
Location: The Interstice
Contact:

Re: Which translations do you prefer for characters' names?

Post by EmmaWinters » Tue Dec 15, 2015 3:59 pm

Thouser wrote:Out of curiosity, why are you generally against translating attack names or titles?
Because many of them are not 1:1 translatable, they're made up Japanese names. I prefer to respect that and use the original name, with a translation note if necessary. With Muten Rōshi, there's the whole martial arts aspect. "Karate", "judo", "shotokan", "jiu jitsu", "taekwondo", "kung fu", even "ninjutsu", the concept of Qi/Ki/Chi, etc. Styles, titles and so on are generally left as-is and explained when necessary.

Of course, this isn't always the case. And just to be clear, I'm not asserting my way is the only way of doing things. I just don't see the need to avoid foreign-sounding words at all costs just because Billy down the street might ask what "Kamehameha" means.
「恨むんならてめえの運命を恨むんだな··· このオレのように···」

User avatar
Puto
I Live Here
Posts: 2660
Joined: Wed Oct 08, 2008 3:40 am
Location: Portugal, Oeiras
Contact:

Re: Which translations do you prefer for characters' names?

Post by Puto » Tue Dec 15, 2015 4:06 pm

Gaffer Tape wrote:
Adamant wrote:Huh. Had no idea. Would've been confused as hell had someone randomly namedropped either of those dub names.
Yeah, I have the same problem most of the time when I hear someone say "Spike." I'm always like, "Who the hell is that?" And then I either remember or am reminded that that's what FUNimation renamed Akkuman.
Wait, what? But he was called "Devilman" in the video games. The hell?
Last edited by Puto on Tue Dec 15, 2015 4:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Blue wrote:I love how Season 2 is so off color even the box managed to be so.

Thouser
Beyond Newbie
Posts: 149
Joined: Mon Aug 06, 2012 6:18 pm
Location: Texas

Re: Which translations do you prefer for characters' names?

Post by Thouser » Tue Dec 15, 2015 4:06 pm

successoroffate wrote:But translating sometimes does not do any favors. Some of the names are basically puns which translating to another market like the US (just to use as an example)would not make any sense. Just like calling Vegeta "Vegetable" and Freeza "Freezer" (Freezer as the home/kitchen appliance, which is the LatinAmerican name and people really see it as a pun).

One last thing, this is all matter of taste but a fan sub is not really the best place to use as an example just like someone said above.
Translating Vegeta as "vegetable" and Freeza as "Freezer" aren't anything like translating Muten Roushi, though.

Vegeta isn't the Japanese word for vegetable, so translating it as "vegetable" is plain wrong. "Yasai" is the Japanese word for vegetable, and the English word is written in Japanese as "bejitaburu." "Bejiita" is a messed up version of "bejitaburu" just like "Vegeta" is a messed up version of "vegetable." There's nothing wrong with it. Same for "Freeza" and "Freezer," which are wriiten just as differently in Japanese as they are in English.
Last edited by Thouser on Tue Dec 15, 2015 4:08 pm, edited 1 time in total.
"Like that bald punk? Killyin... You're talking about Killyin?!!" - Anime Labs

「他们並不是我孫兒... 是我弟弟。」 - 龜仙人

User avatar
EmmaWinters
Moderator
Posts: 863
Joined: Fri Dec 05, 2014 11:10 pm
Location: The Interstice
Contact:

Re: Which translations do you prefer for characters' names?

Post by EmmaWinters » Tue Dec 15, 2015 4:07 pm

Puto wrote:Wait, what? I'm pretty sure they called him Devilman. At least in the video games.
They sometimes do. It's usually prefixed with "Spike", though. "Spike the Devilman"
「恨むんならてめえの運命を恨むんだな··· このオレのように···」

User avatar
B
Born 'n Bred Here
Posts: 5561
Joined: Tue Dec 09, 2008 10:15 am
Contact:

Re: Which translations do you prefer for characters' names?

Post by B » Tue Dec 15, 2015 4:15 pm

EmmaWinters wrote:I just don't see the need to avoid foreign-sounding words at all costs just because Billy down the street might ask what "Kamehameha" means.
The dub of the original series was actually kind-of-sort-of decent when it came this. Most things that originated in DB were translated if it wasn't a "Kamehameha" example of gibberish(Zanzouken, Rogafufuken, Bukujutsu, Mafuuba), but then there were Z holdovers like "Tri-Beam" or the censored Drunken Fist to "Mad Cow".

That's generally how I think I would like it, but, y'know, less half-assed as they did it.

And, we're probably getting further offbase from names, but "power level" is another weird Z thing that made into the DB dub. Goku belts it out(in relation to Daimao) like it's a proper noun term that everyone knows shortly after Karin/Korin gives him the Super God Water. There's no further explanation of what that is, and unless I'm forgetting something, "power level" is never used in the DB dub again.
Last edited by B on Tue Dec 15, 2015 5:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Keen Observation of Dragon Ball Z Movie 4's Climax wrote:Slug shits to see the genki

Thouser
Beyond Newbie
Posts: 149
Joined: Mon Aug 06, 2012 6:18 pm
Location: Texas

Re: Which translations do you prefer for characters' names?

Post by Thouser » Tue Dec 15, 2015 4:54 pm

B wrote:The dub of the original series was actually kind-of-sort-of decent when it came this. Most things that originated in DB were translated if it wasn't a "Kamehameha" example of gibberish(Zanzouken, Rogafufuken, Bukujutsu, Mafuuba), but then there were Z holdovers like "Tri-Beam" or the censored Drunken Fist to "Mad Cow".

That's generally how I think I would like it, but, y'know, less half-assed as they did it.
I agree that that's generally the way I'd like to see it in an official translation too. "Wolf Fang Fist" is actually perfectly accurate except for leaving out the "fuufuu" part. Even something like Viz's "Light of Death" for Makankousappou I'd say is okayish, although it only translates two of the five kanji in the name. Makankousappou is tricky to translate though without it getting too unwieldy. You could just romanize it, sure, but is an unwieldy name the reader can understand worse than an unwieldy name the reader can't understand (or sometimes even pronounce)? There really aren't any easy answers when it comes to this stuff.
B wrote:And, we're probably getting further offbase from names, but "power level" is another weird Z thing that made into the DB dub. Goku belts it out(in relation to Daimao) like it's a proper noun term that everyone knows shortly after Karin/Karin gives him the Super God Water. There's no further explanation of what that is, and unless I'm forgetting something, "power level" is never used in the DB dub again.
They really used "Power Level" in the DB dub? That's hilarious.
"Like that bald punk? Killyin... You're talking about Killyin?!!" - Anime Labs

「他们並不是我孫兒... 是我弟弟。」 - 龜仙人

User avatar
dbgtFO
Kicks it Old-School
Posts: 7771
Joined: Thu Aug 26, 2010 5:07 pm
Contact:

Re: Which translations do you prefer for characters' names?

Post by dbgtFO » Tue Dec 15, 2015 5:05 pm

Thouser wrote:Even something like Viz's "Light of Death" for Makankousappou I'd say is okayish, although it only translates two of the five kanji in the name. Makankousappou is tricky to translate though without it getting too unwieldy.
"Demonic Light Screw." Same amount of syllables as Makankossapo at least.

User avatar
Herms
Kanzenshuu Admin Emeritus
Posts: 10550
Joined: Thu Oct 21, 2004 6:40 pm
Location: Jupiter
Contact:

Re: Which translations do you prefer for characters' names?

Post by Herms » Tue Dec 15, 2015 5:50 pm

I think "Devil Drill Cannon" might have been a good choice for adapting the name.
Kanzenshuu: Is that place still around?
Sometimes, I tweet things
We might, if they screamed all the time, for no good reason.

Thouser
Beyond Newbie
Posts: 149
Joined: Mon Aug 06, 2012 6:18 pm
Location: Texas

Re: Which translations do you prefer for characters' names?

Post by Thouser » Tue Dec 15, 2015 6:02 pm

dbgtFO wrote:"Demonic Light Screw." Same amount of syllables as Makankossapo at least.
Herms wrote:I think "Devil Drill Cannon" might have been a good choice for adapting the name.
I think both of these would have been good choices for localizations. They're both incomplete translations, but as localizations they're fine. They each focus on different parts of the name, but they accurately convey those parts. If the dub had used one of these instead of "Special Beam Cannon," I doubt this attack's name would get quite as much attention as it does. Translation wise it would have been in the same league as "Wolf Fang Fist" vs. "Rouga Fuufuu Ken."
"Like that bald punk? Killyin... You're talking about Killyin?!!" - Anime Labs

「他们並不是我孫兒... 是我弟弟。」 - 龜仙人

User avatar
Akumaito Beam
Regular
Posts: 649
Joined: Thu May 12, 2011 10:04 pm

Re: Which translations do you prefer for characters' names?

Post by Akumaito Beam » Tue Dec 15, 2015 6:31 pm

The biggest issue I've found with adapting all the Japanese terms into English is how far do you go? If a character's name is a pun do you change his name? Do we start using Turtlehameha? You would have to be very mindful and consistent if you went that route. On a personal level I wouldn't mind it but you'd need to avoid pulling a Viz by having "Ikose" right next to "Laem". Ginyu is okay in Viz's book but Pui Pui is changed to Pocus. It's a cluster fuck.

I adore a good English adaptation but I imagine it would be ten times the work than had you just left all the proper nouns in Japanese.

User avatar
B
Born 'n Bred Here
Posts: 5561
Joined: Tue Dec 09, 2008 10:15 am
Contact:

Re: Which translations do you prefer for characters' names?

Post by B » Tue Dec 15, 2015 7:25 pm

Akumaito Beam wrote:Do we start using Turtlehameha?
Or, you could just go with Kamehame Wave, but nobody uses that.
Keen Observation of Dragon Ball Z Movie 4's Climax wrote:Slug shits to see the genki

User avatar
El Diabeetus
I Live Here
Posts: 2137
Joined: Sun Dec 23, 2007 7:07 pm
Location: Ohio

Re: Which translations do you prefer for characters' names?

Post by El Diabeetus » Tue Dec 15, 2015 7:36 pm

Akumaito Beam wrote:The biggest issue I've found with adapting all the Japanese terms into English is how far do you go? If a character's name is a pun do you change his name? Do we start using Turtlehameha? You would have to be very mindful and consistent if you went that route. On a personal level I wouldn't mind it but you'd need to avoid pulling a Viz by having "Ikose" right next to "Laem". Ginyu is okay in Viz's book but Pui Pui is changed to Pocus. It's a cluster fuck.

I adore a good English adaptation but I imagine it would be ten times the work than had you just left all the proper nouns in Japanese.
I like adapting the names where I can. I've called the Kaioh Galactic Overseers to describe their title rather than a literal translation. I've been leaning toward calling the Ginyu Tokusentai = Ginyu Special Rangers. With to drive the Sentai/PR parody while retaining the the whole title for the team. Ginyu is one I'd leave in Japanese, since all the other names had English origins while his was Japanese.

If it weren't about 25 years too late, I'd say Saiyan could be adapted into something like Blevegetans (without the clusterfuck behind it though). I like adapted names better as long as they flow well. Demonic Piercing Death Cannon (despite a mouthfull, is usually what I'd adapt Makankosappo as).

I like Simmons' subs a lot, but sometimes I feel he leaves things in Japanese just to. -sama, -san, etc. can be adaptated, kun is a little harder, but can still be done.

User avatar
Quebaz
Advanced Regular
Posts: 1190
Joined: Tue Jun 26, 2012 8:57 am
Location: Portugal
Contact:

Re: Which translations do you prefer for characters' names?

Post by Quebaz » Thu Dec 17, 2015 10:44 am

B wrote:
Akumaito Beam wrote:Do we start using Turtlehameha?
Or, you could just go with Kamehame Wave, but nobody uses that.
The Portuguese dub of GT used that for whenever the characters weren't screaming the attack, I found it a nice touch actually. I know Funi used "Kamehameha Wave" but then you're putting 2 "waves" in there.
A LUZ INFINITA!
Steam: Quebaz
PSN: BSSJ3
Tumblr

User avatar
Shoryuken
Beyond-the-Beyond Newbie
Posts: 404
Joined: Thu Aug 13, 2009 8:50 am
Location: Land of Lego
Contact:

Re: Which translations do you prefer for characters' names?

Post by Shoryuken » Thu Dec 17, 2015 5:20 pm

Thouser wrote: 亀仙人 (Kame Sennin) / 無天老師 (Muten Roushi): For the first I most often use "Kame Sennin" (no apostrophe), although "Turtle Hermit" or even "Turtle Sage" or "Turtle Immortal" (from usual translation I see of Chinese 仙人) would be preferable for me to see in an official translation. Translating the "muten" in "Muten Roushi" is probably impossible to do without pissing off somebody (No-Heaven Teacher? Heavenless Teacher?? :crazy: ), so I usually leave it as just "Muten Roshi" (macron optional, contrary to how I usually romanize things, but you can thank the Funi dub for brainwashing me into thinking that "roshi" is an acceptable romanization of ろうし :wink: ).
Just a minor correction, but his name is spelled 武天 ("Martial Heavens/God") rather than 無天. This renders a possible (literal) translation of Muten Roushi as "Divine Teacher of the Arts Martial" (for the added stylistic flavour in order to convey the nuance of the Japanese).
SSJ4 Furanki wrote: If it weren't about 25 years too late, I'd say Saiyan could be adapted into something like Blevegetans (without the clusterfuck behind it though).
Seconded. Still amazed that no international adaptation (that I know of) has ever done this.
I like adapted names better as long as they flow well. Demonic Piercing Death Cannon (despite a mouthfull, is usually what I'd adapt Makankosappo as).
I've always been fond of "Infernal Laser" which not only euphonically fits the five morae of the original, but conveys the notion of a "demonic piercing light". With that being said there was a Scandinavian/German version that translated it as "Hell Spiral", which doesn't sound bad either.
これはシグネチャではない
Personal blog - myriadleaves.eu

User avatar
LuckyCat
Advanced Regular
Posts: 1215
Joined: Wed Sep 24, 2014 6:28 pm
Location: The Sacred Land
Contact:

Re: Which translations do you prefer for characters' names?

Post by LuckyCat » Thu Dec 17, 2015 5:35 pm

Shoryuken wrote:Just a minor correction, but his name is spelled 武天 ("Martial Heavens/God") rather than 無天.
You're right, it's definitely 武天老師. 無天 doesn't work as a name as far as I can tell.
Cipher wrote:The first and last word on Super's animation problems and why they exist.
(Have we transcended language to the point where we only communicate in YouTube links now? The talking has already been done for us.)

Thouser
Beyond Newbie
Posts: 149
Joined: Mon Aug 06, 2012 6:18 pm
Location: Texas

Re: Which translations do you prefer for characters' names?

Post by Thouser » Fri Dec 18, 2015 1:35 am

Shoryuken wrote:
Just a minor correction, but his name is spelled 武天 ("Martial Heavens/God") rather than 無天. This renders a possible (literal) translation of Muten Roushi as "Divine Teacher of the Arts Martial" (for the added stylistic flavour in order to convey the nuance of the Japanese).
You're right, I totally misremembered. "Heavenly Martial Arts Teacher" or "The Divine Master of Martial Arts" or something along those lines would be fine.

I was looking at the Viz translation recently, and when Gyūmaō finds out where Gokū got the Kintoun and says "The Turtle Hermit? That's Muten Rōshi!" they translated as "That 'Turtle Guy'?! That's my invincible old master!!" which is just plain weird. But because they decided to translate 武天 as "Invincible," it made me misremember, thinking Muten was spelled with a 無 like in 無敵 (muteki; invincible). Of course, since it's spelled with 武 like in 武道, that already loose Viz translation makes even less sense.
"Like that bald punk? Killyin... You're talking about Killyin?!!" - Anime Labs

「他们並不是我孫兒... 是我弟弟。」 - 龜仙人

User avatar
Khin
I Live Here
Posts: 2540
Joined: Tue Aug 18, 2015 12:33 am
Location: West City
Contact:

Re: Which translations do you prefer for characters' names?

Post by Khin » Fri Dec 18, 2015 3:25 am

B wrote:Or, you could just go with Kamehame Wave, but nobody uses that.
That term is the most popular term for Kamehameha in my country,mainly due to our own dub calling it like that.

Post Reply