With the Angry Video Game Nerd reaching some degree of popularity on Nico Nico Douga, it was only inevitable that his crossover fight would end up exposing the Japanese online community to the Nostalgia Critic. There’s only one review up so far, but just like the AVGN videos there’s Japanese subtitles to help those with a less-than-ideal grasp of English along.
Humorously found under the title “AVGN Rival,” the first instance of the Nostalgia Critic on nicovideo is his review of Cartoon All Stars to the Rescue. Now what’s even more difficult about translating this review than doing one of the AVGN reviews is that a lot of these “big-name cartoons” at the time are not known too well in Japan. Sure there’s “Mutant Turtles,” and “Looney Tunes” and “Pooh,” but I get the feeling that Muppet Babies never made it across the Pacific. Please correct me if I’m wrong. In that respect, it’s a worthy endeavor, and if you just assume that these shows are something, then it all works out.
Also, apparently there is no good translation for “Brawny Man.” Alas. I wonder then how that Simpsons episode with the Burly Man turned out in Japan, if at all.
In a previous post I talked about how someone has had the courtesy of translating episodes of Yu-Gi-Oh!: The Abridged Series into Japanese and uploading them to Nico Nico Douga for the Japanese to enjoy. It turns out someone else has been doing the same with James Rolfe‘s most well-known internet phenomenon, the Angry Video Game Nerd (formerly known as the Angry Nintendo Nerd).
And just like with Yugioh Abridged, the fun comes from seeing how the Nico Nico Douga viewers respond to it (they love it), as well as seeing how his very American style of talking translates to a language which just doesn’t have the slang and syntax that English does. So how do you translate James’ expletive-ridden mouth into a language which simply doesn’t have the same take and history in regards to verbal obscenities? The answer is that you don’t.
Whoever the translator is, he’s opted for the spirit and not the letter. “Fuck” gets frequently translated to “kuso.” When there’s a long string of curses, the goal of the translation usually seems to be to convey his anger and not necessarily his exact language and often doesn’t even try to match the number of swears. And in some cases, certain puns or instances of wordplay don’t get translated at all to keep the subtitles simple and easy to read.
So sit back and take it up the ass in a foreign language, courtesy of Nico Nico Douga and Cinemassacre.