FANDOM


WikEd fancyquotesQuotesBug-silkHeadscratchersIcons-mini-icon extensionPlaying WithUseful NotesMagnifierAnalysisPhoto linkImage LinksHaiku-wide-iconHaikuLaconic
File:Talentedlita.jpg


We're all (sadly) familiar with Bowdlerisation. Thanks to the American Animation Age Ghetto, anything in anime deemed too mature for the new, younger target Demographics has to be cut and covered up, especially any sexual Subtext, Ho Yay, or Double Entendres.

So why is it that so many adaptations seem to contain more blatant Subtext than the original?

Well, there are several reasons:

And they say Viewers are Morons.

Examples of Dub Text include:


Anime and Manga

  • Thanks to Dub Text on Sailor Moon; the American version of the show:
    • Turned Michiru (Michelle) and Haruka (Amara) from unrelated lesbians into "cousins" dialogue-wise, somewhat ignoring the fact a lot of their affection is understated (to Americans) physical contact that wasn't edited. Considering the two characters had already become quite famous before the rest of the series was dubs, some fans chalked up the Pragmatic Adaptation as being a fan of Getting Crap Past the Radar. Ironically, the avoidance of a shortlived running gag involving Haruka being mistaken for a guy in later episodes (possibly because her appearance would not be unusual to Americans) it gives certain affectionate reactions towards her an ironically stronger Les Yay context.
      • Something similar occurred later on in the S season, where Chibiusa/Rini had a childhood crush on the Victim of the Week, Tamasaburoh. Nothing wrong with that, right? Well, in the English dub, he was made into a girl, possibly because of a funny short scene at the end where he dresses up as a Sailor Senshi. Rini talked about admiring Tamasaburoh in the dub and wanting to be her friend, but there wasn't much editing besides.
    • Re-popularized the Unusual Euphemism of "talent" for "breast size". The characters were trying out for the play Snow White and Makoto says she should be chosen because of her large breasts. The American dub had her refer to her being the most talented instead, but didn't edit the gesture that made it abundantly clear what Lita (dub name for Makoto) meant by being "the most talented".
    • Then there was the scene where the villain Mimete's bare leg is bopping up and down from off-screen which pans to reveal that she's...playing Twister. The American dub made this scene even saucier as Mimete's voice actress makes all sorts of sultry moans during it.
    • Neflyte's reaction upon seeing Sailor Moon transform for the first time:

  Neflyte: I watched while you changed. It was fascinating.

      • The American version kept in "I watched while you changed," but made it the last part of the sentence. The first part in the American dub was something to the extent of "So Sailor Moon is really named Serena."
    • The scene in the S season where Usagi/Serena accidentally got drunk at a party and started chattering with the exchange students was changed to her drinking "too much juice" in the dub, but as with the Twister scene, the voice acting made her seem more drunk than in the original.
  • Naruto: In an early episode, Naruto is sizing Sasuke up, sitting on Sasuke's desk and staring straight into his eyes. (Metaphorical) bits of lightning fly from one's eyes to the other. In the original anime, Sakura and the other girls tell Naruto to sit down; Naruto loses balance and accidentally kisses Sasuke. In the aired version of the dubbed anime, they cut away at the moment of the actual tripping over and kissing, which makes it look less like an embarrassing accident and more like teen experimentation (though it was oddly seen again in a montage and one opening). Amusingly, the author said the whole reason he did this was to use the joke "just so fans would have it out of the way".
    • And let us not forget, "I'm gonna screw YOU up, Naruto!"
    • It should be mentioned that in the dub, the "Kissing" sound was left in tact while they just showed an extended reaction scene from everyone else. They also left in the reaction scene from Naruto afterwards.
      • Not to mention that flashbacks of the scene kept the scene completely in tact.
    • The honorific used by Deidara when addressing his partner-in-crime Sasori got translated to English in Shippuden as "Sasori, my man" (and in some cases, "My man Sasori") and he uses this term at darn-near every opportunity. To older audiences, this line is dripping with bromance, which is probably a reason why it became a meme in the fandom.
    • And there was another instance in episode 53 of the first anime where Jiraiya was training Naruto (who was just wearing his boxers) and while Naruto was concentrating on his chakra energy Jiraiya stares at him for a bit before saying, "You're quite sexy when you get naked." Even better in the english dub where Jiraiya says almost seductively to Naruto: "Amazing! You know...you have quite a tight sexy little body."
  • Digimon Adventure 02: The Kaiser and Daisuke had enough Foe Yay, but the Emperor tells Davis how "watching you squirm is so delicious" and calls him "pretty boy."
    • There's also a case in Digimon Frontier, where Izumi/Fairymon has an Ass Kicks You attack. Presumably, the dubbers thought the move was a tad risque, so in Zoe/Kazemon never called that attack. She used it, she just never called it. (Well, officially. She did taunt her opponent the first time with "How 'bout a little 'love tap'?") It made it look like the human girl came up with the idea to thrust her butt at the enemy, as opposed to being just part of her Mon alter-ego's Special Attack list. (Incidentally, smacking things with her butt never accomplished much - one time she even hurt herself trying. And yet she kept doing it on occasion.)
      • Let's not forget how in the first season the dub said TK and Matt were half-brothers in like the third episode, probably an assumption made by the dubbers because the two had different last names. So perhaps Matt's parents split up and TK was the child of Matt's mother second marriage? Eh, no. We later see in a flashback TK and Matt's parents going their separate ways when TK was 4 and Matt was 7. In other words, thanks to the dubbers mistake it was now made to look like TK and Matt's mother cheated on Mr. Ishida and TK was a product of that affair that Mr. Ishida didn't learn of until later.
  • Yu-Gi-Oh! GX: Sho worships Judai like a brother and affectionately calls him aniki. But Syrus declares, "Jaden's my best friend! He's my hero! He's the hot fudge on the sundae that is my life!" Who writes this stuff?!
    • LittleKuriboh, apparently.
    • Not to mention how the implications of Bastion's infamous night with Taniya are even stronger in the dub. Adding lines about having kids, the honeymoon, "We had passion!", and Bastion screaming throughout the night...well, "dueling all night"...IsThatWhatTheyreCallingItNow
    • Even the heterosexual pairing Asuka/Judai gets more emphasis in the English and German dubs.
    • Solitaire with Thunder Nyan Nyan.
  • The Yu-Gi-Oh! 5D's dub somehow makes Yusei's first duel with Sherry sound even more like a metaphor for sex.
    • The original last line of the first episode was Yusei saying, "Look out Jack Atlus, I'm coming." When it was met with riotous laughter at an early preview, it was quickly changed before the air date.
  • Original Yu-Gi-Oh! has its own lines. "Florida has the best beaches; I think I forgot to pack my bathing suit."
  • Pokémon: Maddie Blaustein apparently played Meowth's feelings toward Giovanni as Ho Yay; rather reasonable considering the Imagine Spots from Hoenn onwards.
    • 4Kids also threw in a heapin' helpin' of previously non-existant "hints" that Ash and Misty were hot for each other until Misty left the main cast.
      • And a couple after she left too, Movie 6's dub-added line about Ash missing her being the most notable.
      • Though contrary to what some claim, not all of it was added by 4Kids; some scenes would be obvious even if you watched them with your TV muted.
      • In reality, not much was added, maybe two or three hints. In fact, a lot of people who Ship Misty and Ash disregard the dub-added hints as canon, and detest things like "Misty's Song" (basically, Misty singing about how much she loves Ash).
    • Hell, while 4Kids removed any overt references to sexuality, they inserted a hell of a lot of innuendo that wasn't there in the Japanese version. People who have seen both versions say the American version is slightly better written because of the creativity of the Parental Bonus moments.
    • Harley was a flamboyant Camp Gay character in the original Japanese, but the 4kids and PUSA dubs take that Up to Eleven. However, this was most likely a deliberate case of Getting Crap Past the Radar.
    • In a episode 18 a Dirty Old Man gets turned into a dirty old man who may or may not be sexually abusing his grandchildren. When he sees Misty (in a bikini) his original Japanese line is something to the effect of "Come back in about eight years and we'll have some fun". In the dub, his body language (right down to the blush and lewd grin) stay the same, but the line becomes "You look like my granddaughter!".
    • In "The Kangaskhan Kid" Tommy's father asks him if he remembers him, holding his shirt open. In the original he was asking him if he remembers how his mother used to breastfeed him.
    • In episode 9, school of hard knocks Ash is shown a picture of a schoolgirl and goes gaga, perhaps the only time he has but what's intesting to note is Brock's line "She can violate..." he's cut off and if you try hard in context it makes sense, the kid who showed the girl's picture said she violates people's rights and feelings. Regardless it can be hard not to mistake Brock's line for something else, especially if you're over the age of like 12
    • James of Team Rocket. Not quite as obvious as with Harley, but with lines like "It's times like this that make me want to go straight" it's hard not to draw conclusions. (Not to mention the infamous Flaming Moltres episode.)
      • "I think that costume came right out of his closet..."
      • In the Swedish dub, voice actor Andreas Nilsson starts James off as sounding fairly normal, tenor voice, but nothing out of the ordinary. Come 13 seasons later, his voice is now quite high pitched, and really sounds like a stereotypical gay male of the flamboyant kind would sound. And yes, still the same voice actor.
  • In the English dub of Yu Yu Hakusho when Itsuki explains Sensui's backstory he says that he had been stalking Sensui to get closer to him. There is no such reference in the Japanese version, nor the manga.
    • While the relationship between Genkai and Younger Toguro is left relatively ambiguous in the original Japanese version and the manga, the writers at FUNimation played up the 'what-could-have-been' between them fairly well in their final conversation, to the point of implying they were together 50 years prior.
  • Minto from Tokyo Mew Mew was already Zakuro's biggest fangirl, but 4Kids was expected to censor out every scene of Ship Tease between the two of them. Instead, they amped it up, turning it into a gag, and bizarrely even changed her imagining a bishonen dancer to imaging Zakuro. "Nooo! My precious Renee!" The English version was canceled before the episode where Minto confesses her love, however it may be viewed, which leaves one to wonder what they'd have done then.
  • Sorcerer Hunters. In the original anime, Gateau flirts with Marron a bit. In the ADV dub, well...

 Gateau: So, Marron, if we ever wanna, now would be the chance.

Marron: Let's make sure they don't kill him first, then we'll see.

Gateau: Prick tease.

  • Gundam Wing 's Latin-American dub takes the Ho Yay between Trowa and Quatre and makes it a canon crush from Quatre's side. In the "Birth of Queen Relena" episode, Quatre wonders why is he sad upon leaving Trowa "despite really loving him", and in his duel with Dorothy, as he tries to make her more open about her ideas, he says "Trowa taught me that (to not shut off his own feelings), and that's why I love him."
  • In Gundam Wing, when Milliardo's team is told to destroy the Wing Gundam the following occurs:

 Milliardo: "Have you really destroyed the Gundam 01?"

Scientist: "No, but we did blow up all the Tallgeese's spareparts."

    • Slightly earlier too:

 Scientist: "We've learned a lot from studying the destroyed Gundam 01."

Milliardo: "OK. What have you learned?"

Scientist: "It's completely destroyed."

      • The two examples above have caused some fans to not trust any Gundam Scientists at all. The best minds of OZ and Zeon are not all that great.
  • In Ghost Hunt, there is a case involving a game of hide-and-seek. However, one of the children is mute, so he hits a stick against a nearby object to show that he's ready. In the original, Mai makes a comment about how he's hiding in the woods and that he's hitting trees with the stick so that they can find him. In the dub she says, "He's just out there in the woods, beating his stick all day." Yeah.
  • The first two Dragonball Z dubs tended to make Freeza gay, at least very camp. The most obvious one was the scene where he has the Dragonballs and says that having the balls makes him feel like caressing them.
    • In addition, the dub makes the Ginyu Force seem more gay than they originally were. One example of this is in the dub, Captain Ginyu is sitting in front of the Dragon Balls and says "What lovely balls!". Recoome mentions at one point that he loves soap operas.
    • This also occasionally happened in the dub for Dragon Ball. It's hard to tell how the double entendres came about though, because there's no way Pilaf's line "I can't rule the world with one ball" wasn't intentional.
    • The Polish dub of Dragon Ball featured some good examples. One being the scene with Yamucha taking a peek at Bulma taking a shower (seen in full nude). The dub suggested Yamucha was scared of SHAMPOO instead of feminine attributes.
      • The Blue Water dub (an English dub showed in English-speaking countries other than the US) of Dragon Ball had this gem from the same scene:

  Yamucha: Not dragon balls...definitely not dragon balls.

    • Polish Dragon Ball dub again, this time with an episode featuring Toriyama's Arale character. She hands a pink, grinning poop-on-a-stick to General Blue, much to his disgust, however the dubbed villain utters something like "Oh no, I hate strawberry ice-cream!".
    • Speaking of Hitler, he comes Back From the Dead in one of the movies. While they only call him "The Dictator", and his insignia is just an X, one would expect the dub to downplay how much he's obviously Hitler, but they did the opposite. In the original, when he catches a glimpse of the blonde, blue-eyed Super Saiyans, "The Dictator" calls them a bunch of poseurs. In the American dub, "The Dictator" actually likes them and seriously considers making them part of his Army.
    • And of course, there's Vegeta's death scene in the Freeza Saga. In the dub, while explaining Freeza's history with the Saiyans, he says that he was forced to serve Freeza under the threat of killing his father and subsequently led astray by Freeza's influence. As he buries Vegeta, Goku talks about how he pities Vegeta after learning what he had been through, rather than expressing his newfound respect for his Saiyan heritage. In short, the dub choose to detail how Freeza affected one individual rather than the Saiyans as a whole.
  • Although Neon Genesis Evangelion had its fair share of Ho Yay in the Kaworu episode, the Brazilian dub made it way heavier by implying that they even slept together in a more physical sense. Of course, taking in consideration that half the dubbers are Genre Savvy, and the other half just love to play with this kind of situation...
    • The first English dub voice of Kaworu had a lisp, though it's unclear whether this was simply the actor's voice or meant as a gay stereotype.
  • The Cardcaptor Sakura Macekre removed all they could about Shaoran's infatuation with Yukito, an older sixteen-year-old boy. Unfortunately, Shaoran's presence in a significant number of scenes is based entirely on this crush, and its removal gives the incorrect though later prescient implication that Shaoran is, for all his bluster, crushing on Sakura.
  • In Generator Gawl, somehow, with nothing said outright, the English dub manages to convey the impression that Koji and Ryo are married, with Gawl as their Keet boytoy/son.
  • The Ikki Tousen manga is translated in America as "Battle Vixens", and is quite liberal with adding a lot of dub text. People swear much more than the Japanese version, and lots of references to American culture are used. Fans of the series find these changes hilarious, while detractors of the series hate the changes that add a fair amount of juvenile humor to what could be a deadly serious story.
  • Crayon Shin-chan: Justified in that it was made into a Gag Dub in America and that it aired on Adult Swim.
  • The Negima manga, not exactly known for its subtlety in the first place, had even more innuendo inserted into the English adaptation of the first volume for no readily apparent reason.
  • Axis Powers Hetalia features a lot of Ho Yay and just-plain morally questionable lines in the English dub, where France refers to America and England strangling each other as "releasing sexual tensions," Germany asks Italy if they should kiss now that they're friends (with Italy replying, "Nope. Unless you want to."), and Japan's response to Italy commenting on allegedly shrinking this "thing" during their "getting acquainted" hot spring soak. In the Japanese version, he says, "You now know my secret. I guess I have no choice." The American version: "Japanese people grow-a, not show-a."


Film

  • Pick any Western with Archie Fire Lame Deer in it. Any. The Lakota is hilarious.

Video Games

  • Related video game example: The German version of Resident Evil 4 cuts several scenes down to fit the country's exacting violence standards. One scene shows Ashley cornered by monsters. In the original, they close in on her and then attack, knocking her down. In the German version, the camera just fades out as they close in on her, staring menacingly at her scantily clad form. Of course, this led to many excitable gamers jumping to the most obvious conclusion.
  • In the English dub of Metal Gear Solid, Naomi was played by Jennifer Hale; in the dub of Metal Gear Solid 2, Emma Emmerich was played by the same voice actress. This is all perfectly fine until Metal Gear Solid 4 where Hal Emmerich and Naomi sleep together, adding in a suggestion of Loving a Shadow-style Brother-Sister Incest, made even worse by the fact that Hal had already canonically slept with his stepmother.
    • Not to mention the necessary change of Sunny's way of addressing Otacon ('Uncle Hal' instead of 'Nii-san') made it look more like Snake and Otacon were a male-male couple who'd adopted a child rather than adoptive older brothers, which boosted the Ho Yay to catastrophic levels.
  • The online RPG Phantasy Star Universe seems to have someone in the translation department playing some games. On several occasions, lines are written in such a way as to make characters look foolish, however on two occasions in particular, things just get weird. For instance: "So these machines train these girls to be maidens? How does that work?" - "I'll leave that to your imagination.", and the direct translation of Commander Curtz attempt to be more 'human' by addressing a young female character as 'Lumia-chan', turned it into a rather more creepy 'Lumia dear', further worsened by Lumia's worried reaction.
  • The localization of Snatcher censored out a scene of naked dead robot breasts, and removed some borderline loli fanservice by the time-honored practice of aging the girl up from fourteen to eighteen, and redrawing her to look older. However, they did rebel, once - in a scene where the ex-loli was wearing a towel, the redraw gave her visible nipples.
  • The localizations of the Rockman X games have occasional...odd translation choices. Notable instances include Zero yelling "I'll do you first!" to an opponent, and X telling Zero that "We will join hands...and never let anyone sever us again!".
  • A case where this is more serious can be found in Final Fantasy Tactics Advance. The American version removes Cid's alcohol problem, changing him from drunkenly oblivious to "crying in the gutters," and adds a bit of implied self-hatred as well.
  • Dragon Power made only a weak effort to cover up its origins as a Dragon Ball Licensed Game. Players familiar with Dragon Ball (which wasn't released in the U.S. until later) can still recognize, for instance, the Turtle Hermit as Master Roshi. In this version, the Hermit insists that Nora (i.e. Bulma) give him her "sandwich." So, is that what he calls it?
  • The scene in which Pokey gets punished by his dad in Earthbound. In the Japanese version, he gets spanked, with several slaps heard off-screen. In the English version, the physical abuse was "toned down"; we hear one loud smack followed by a squealing sound, suggesting that he was given a black eye. Sure, a hard slap to the face or a black eye is much better than a sore butt.
  • In the Japanese, French, and German versions of The Legend of Zelda Links Awakening, the mermaid's missing item is a bikini top, but the American release changed it to a necklace. So, she was topless the whole time now.
    • Also, the hippo who tells you to go away was actually a nude model posing in a painting.

Western Animation

  • In the latter episodes of the first animated series of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Michelangelo's Nunchucks were considered "too violent" by the UK (who also changed the name of the show to Teenage Mutant Hero Turtles as the word "ninja" had connotations of assassinations and UK censors did not want children to think that killing is cool) and in a severe case of Fridge Logic Mike's nunchucks were replaced with a grappling hook. Apparently its way too savage to whack someone with a Nunchuck but impaling them with the hooks of a grappling hook is A-OK. Needless to say Leonardo and Raphael were apparently lucky that nobody noticed on how they use bladed weapons.
  • In the Japanese dub of Beast Wars, Airazor was changed from a woman to a man. Most think it was because girl Transformers don't sell well. Later on in the series, Airrazor [2] got into a relationship with another Transformer. A male Transformer. Whoops. The Powers That Be wound up just going along with their final scene together instead of cutting anything out to make it seem less couply, and when they got letters about it, simply said something to the effect of "well, some people are just that way." (Keep in mind TF Japan also gave us Kain and Akira.)
  • "Human Again", an originally Cut Song from Disney's Beauty and The Beast, has Mrs. Potts noting that Lumiere's impending return to humanity should "cause several husbands alarm". In the Norwegian dub, the writers seemingly ignored that figures of speech don't always translate well: with most of the original wording intact, the line changes meaning and only makes sense if Mrs. Potts is speaking as Lumiere's wife. The context does not help, as it is spoken just before he laughingly whisks her away.
  • There's an episode of Chowder in which our title-character really has to pee. Many crude but innocent jokes follow. Now, for some reason, when it got dubbed into Hungarian, they translated the "go" part of "go to the toilet" as "elmenni", which means just that (to go [away]). However the correct phrase would have been "kimenni" (to go out), since "elmenni" has another, drastically different meaning in Hungarian: namely, "to come" (yes, the opposite of "go"). The voice actors obviously saw through this blooper, as you can tell by the peculiar way they stress the word.

 Mung: Did you COME?

Chowder: No.

  • During the Voltron: Legendary Defender episode "The Black Paladins," Keith gives an Anguished Declaration of Love during his battle with a brainwashed Shiro. In the original English version, he says "I love you," which is a catch-all declaration of affection to someone in the English language that is easily open to fan interpretation. The Japanese dub has Keith saying "ai shiteru," the strongest and most powerful declaration of romantic love in that language. Naturally, many Sheith shippers were overjoyed.

Notes

  1. (known as Makoto in the original Japanese)
  2. It's officially got two Rs in Japan
Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.