Sunday, April 04, 2004

Argh! (dub vs sub revisited)

It's a long running debate about whether anime is better viewed by gaijin as subtitled or dubbed. Usually, I watch the first time with sub-titled, and rewatch dubbed. Sometimes the dubbed version provides useful/necessary cultural/idiomatic - rather than literal - translation. The best example I've seen is in the Dirty Pair Flash Mission 2 second episode, Mysterious Highschool 17 in which the dubbed version provides an explanation of the various bits of paper hung around the lobby, and converts Japanese historical periods into Common Era dating, while the sub was clearly much more literal.

But today, I was re-watching the first Noir DVD, and decided to watch it dubbed.


While the Japanese may have some odd takes on the West, this is trumped by the USAn incomprehension of Europe. The Japanese can at least correctly pronounce Mireille (for those reading this west of the Atlantic - you can get a good first approximation by pronouncing it Mi-ray). It's even the same "rei" in the middle as they got right for Ayanami Rei, dammit! But the dub pronounces it Mirielle (sounding like Miri-el - either Superman's lesser known cousin).

But then I really should have expected this - by contrast with the useful extras in the previous episode, in the Dirty Pair Flash Mission 2 third episode, Hot Springs Streamy Romantic Tour, the dub badly mispronounces the name of the restaurant Trois Poires (pronounced roughly as "truh pwuh"). I forget how they mangled the "Trois" - it may have been as "tray" - but they definitely pronounced the "Poires" if it it were "Poirés" and rhymed with soirée (as pwuh-ray).

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