Blind Idiot Translation/Newspaper Comics

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Papers of the newest comedians (Newspaper Comics)

  • Jim Davis has said that he tries to avoid puns and American-centric references in Garfield so that the strip can translate internationally, but he didn't always do that at first, leading to some pretty bad translations:
    • In this strip, "I ate a Milk Dud and kissed a cat" became "I hate spoiled milk and kissing cats." Obviously, this was a too-literal translation of "Milk Duds", but to be fair, those are sold only in the United States.
    • Another strip didn't seem to grasp that "Good Humor man" referred to a brand of ice cream, so "Good Humor" got translated literally to refer to a friendly/sympathetic man.
    • "I feel like a dirty magazine" (as in, a pornographic magazine) became "I feel like a dirty old magazine" (as in, unwashed).
    • And other times, the translators just managed to screw up anyway:
      • In this strip, Garfield's dialogue was translated to something like "Pero al menos no he roto una pata" ("But at least I haven't broken a limb/leg") even though he's clearly pointing to a branch, making it clear that the "sturdy limb" he's talking about is the tree branch.
      • This one turned "They say the pet alligators that are flushed into the sewers grow to huge proportions" into "They say that there are enormous crocodiles" (?!?).
    • To be fair, the Garfield translators have gotten much better, to the point that they sometimes embellish the jokes with Spanish puns or rhymes (including some that even translate back into English). Pretty much the only major mistakes they've made are:
      • In this strip, they forgot to invert the words for "beef stew" and killed the joke.
      • Also, Jim Davis breaking his own "no puns" rule led to this one getting translated literally with localizations of all those last names, thus ruining the joke.
  • This seems to be standard operating procedure for the Spanish comics on gocomics.com. One FoxTrot strip had Jason mention that he wanted "cash" for Christmas and got a Johnny Cash album. The Spanish translation paid no heed to the pun and simply translated "cash" as "efectivo", destroying the entire point of the joke and putting nothing in its place. One translation that would have worked for Spanish is if he'd said he asked for lana (Spanish for "wool" but also a slang for money) and gotten a sweater instead of money.