Why the Name "Hire Dragon"?

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Gaffer Tape
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Why the Name "Hire Dragon"?

Post by Gaffer Tape » Wed Dec 07, 2016 9:50 am

Okay, so Gohan's little dragon buddy in movies 3-5 and filler... I know the term is supposed to refer to a dragon for hire as in something Gohan can ride. I guess I'm just confused because the name comes in so quickly. Literally in the creature's second scene, before he becomes Gohan's pet, Gohan is already referring to him as "Hire Dragon" without any kind of explanation or reason. So is this type of naming scheme really common in Japan? Do people often attribute "Hire ______" nomenclature to things, so that it just comes across as natural that Gohan would throw this name out there? What's the story here?
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Re: Why the Name "Hire Dragon"?

Post by theoriginalbilis » Wed Dec 07, 2016 12:33 pm

If I remember correctly, the subs for the Pioneer/Ocean/FUNi dub of Movie 3 referred to him as "Higher Dragon." I guess because he could fly (higher)?

Steve Simmon's subs referred to him as "Haiya Dragon", which I thought was just a cute martial arts "Hai Ya!" name to give a pet.

Never fully understood the reasoning why he was named either though.
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Re: Why the Name "Hire Dragon"?

Post by NitroEX » Wed Dec 07, 2016 1:41 pm

Doesn't it have something to do with Dr. Slump having a similar character named Taxi Dragon?

I've always just assumed it was supposed to be part of Toriyama's naming convention with Haiya carrying a double meaning and sounding like the words hire & higher.

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Re: Why the Name "Hire Dragon"?

Post by Thouser » Wed Dec 07, 2016 2:45 pm

NitroEX wrote:Doesn't it have something to do with Dr. Slump having a similar character named Taxi Dragon?
Probably. In Japanese the English word "Hire" (ハイヤー) means a "vehicle for hire," which includes taxis.

It's written the same way as the word "higher," which is where the translation "Higher Dragon" comes from.

As for why the name comes up in movie 3 so quickly with no explanation, I think it might just be sloppy writing. They probably came up with the name first, and simply forgot to put in a scene where he actually gets his name.

Either that or it's just an in-joke and you weren't supposed to see when Gohan actually names him, so when Hire Dragon shows up and Gohan calls him that, people in the know would think "Oh, it's like Taxi Dragon."
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Re: Why the Name "Hire Dragon"?

Post by Gaffer Tape » Thu Dec 08, 2016 8:42 am

Thanks! Taxi Dragon was a Dr. Slump character I was not familiar with, but upon looking him up... yeah, he looks pretty much exactly like Hire Dragon.
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