Cut and Paste Translation/Anime and Manga

Everything About Fiction You Never Wanted to Know.
Jump to navigation Jump to search


Television Series

  • Carl Macek's most famous effort was the three-way hybridization that turned the unrelated series Super Dimension Fortress Macross, Southern Cross, and Genesis Climber Mospeada into Robotech while throwing out almost all of latter two programs' original scripts. While massive changes to the stories of the three series make the adaptation unpopular with many anime fans, the show was a legitimate commercial success, and created a foothold for Japanese animation in the U.S., along with a minor pop-culture phenomenon of its own.
    • It has to be granted that outside of some Lull Destruction perhaps, Super Dimension Fortress Macross was barely changed in any significant manner. Vrlitwhai was renamed Breetai (a spelling that even later, more literal translations would stick with for ease of pronunciation and memory inertia), and Roy Focker's name was spelled Roy Fokker instead (probably to fix the Shout-Out). Even many changed names were only minorly altered, at least in orthography if not pronunciation; Misa Hayase became "Lisa Hayes", for example. No major censorship was done; in fact, Robotech actually has a higher body count than the original Super Dimension Fortress Macross. There were only two truly major edits, the first being changing the nature of "protoculture" to tie in with the other two shows -- which does cause some confusion when trying to make a jump from Robotech to Macross. The other one, of course, is fate of the SDF 1 and SDF 2 -- in Japan both survive and SDF 2 becomes the Megaroad 1, which kicks off the new era of colonization and the rest of the franchise. In Robotech, both are destroyed, thus bifurcating Robotech from Macross forever (barring a whole mess of retconning).
      • Well, the other reason that Roy Focker->Roy Fokker was the same reason that Puck Man became Pac Man in the States. All you need is a marker, and BOOM! Instant profanity on a "children's" product.
    • Like with Dragon Quest anime and Cinar's dub of Wizard of Oz, all the credits for Robotech go to Harmony Gold and its localization team. The only Japanese names you see in the credits are Tatsunoko Production Co. Limited, Kenji Yoshida and Ippei Kuri.
      • It has to be further noted that the use of Southern Cross as the second saga of Robotech actually increased knowledge of that animated series in Japan. As it turns out, Southern Cross was canned before it could be truly finished and the dub of Robotech into Japanese made the audience remember the series (yeah, Japan got a dubbed Robotech, which was an Americanized anime. This happens a lot, oddly enough).
    • Macek then took Megazone 23, edited in some Robotech footage, wrote his own script, and called the resulting mutant Robotech: The Movie. This one was so bad, even his distributor couldn't get it into theaters.
      • The original plot to the movie was going to be vastly different, but that plot had to be changed when the creators of Macross demanded it be changed so it couldn't remotely interfere with the then-new Macross movie Do You Remember Love. Also, the Southern Cross footage was shoehorned in at the behest of distributor Canon Films, who didn't feel the movie had enough action. Ironically…
    • Actually, during a recent interview with Macek on Anime News Network's podcast, Macek explained that the reason the Robotech movie wasn't shown in theaters was because it was too violent -- during test screenings, children were scared to tears at all of the explosions and deaths in the movie, while adults enjoyed it. Harmony Gold didn't know how to fix this demographic problem without editing the whole movie, so they released it outside of the U.S. instead.
    • Then there was Clash of the Bionoids. This was a version of the aforementioned Do You Remember Love with an English dub made by Toho (which is much like their dubs of their Godzilla movies), which subsequently had 23 minutes cut out by its American licensor Celebrity Home Entertainment. The cuts were mainly because of violence (since it was marketed under CHE's "Just For Kids" label); however, for some reason they also cut out the scene at the end that lets the audience know that Hikaru survived. (Carl Macek had nothing to do with this one.)
    • Macek also merged Captain Harlock and Queen Millennia to create the rarely seen Captain Harlock and the Queen of a Thousand Years.
    • Macek rewrote the script for Windaria, which he retitled Once Upon A Time; he trimmed its 102-minute running time to 95 minutes, switched scenes around, gave all of the characters Western names, and provided narration which, most egregiously of all, replaced the original's Downer Ending with something more hopeful.
    • His dub of the famous feature-length anime Akira was so badly received that when his license on it expired, another company snapped it up in order to put out a "correct" version -- a point which they trumpeted on the packaging and in their marketing.
  • Voltron was created from two unrelated Combining Mecha series, GoLion and Dairugger XV. However, while the plot changes were considerable, the interference between the two combined stories was minimal, and each occurred almost in its own continuity.
    • More notable was the censoring of the death of Sven, which was turned into merely being badly injured and being shipped to a hospital planet. This heavily clashes with the imagery of his death scene, where he's being cradled by Lance, and his sword falls over as he "passes out." The end result, however, was more an inspired/lucky bit of Woolseyism: in the original there was such a backlash against Sven's death that they introduced his identical twin brother who the dub just pretended was actually Sven.
  • The fairly straightforward Streamline dub of Lensman could be considered an ironic inversion since the anime itself was a Macekre of its original source material.
  • The company behind Voltron, World Events Productions, then brought over Saber Rider and the Star Sheriffs (otherwise known as Sei Juushi Bismarck) changed some things around, refused to say die again and released it on American television... where it once again blew away the Japanese release in ratings and did well in other parts of the world. WEP gained a reputation for taking failures, making them kid-friendly (which sometimes takes away some of the vital spark of the show but still retains the core of what made it good), and then making it a huge success. The company no longer actively licenses, however.
  • Mazinger Z infamously got this sort of treatment after Voltron proved successful, and got it from people who didn't care a whit about maintaining the show's integrity. Needless to say, there's a reason few people love Tranzor Z these days, and Go Nagai was frustrated enough with the failure that it took over a decade for any other Dynamic Productions show to reach America.
  • Lots of changes were made to the DiC and Cloverway dubs of Sailor Moon to make it more palatable for American audiences, including:
  • Pretty much every other show dubbed by 4Kids! Entertainment show some of the signs, such as Yu-Gi-Oh!! and Shaman King. Their adaptation of One Piece doesn't just show the signs, it's lying in a pool of its own digitally erased blood. Ultimate Muscle got to mostly escape this, and Kirby: Right Back at Ya! and eight years of Pokémon also got off lightly, if not completely (although see below).
    • Let's go a bit further into the absolute butchery that is 4Kids One Piece. Whole episodes and at least one entire story arc were removed. "Ale" and "grog" were changed to "juice", and guns became water pistols or were recoloured. Of course, fans were not pleased.
    • Pokémon saw music being removed or altered, violence and sexual situations being removed or toned down, entire episodes and plot-lines being ignored or flat out rewritten and removed. Also, a lot of character personality changes took place in the dub to make the characters more relatable to American children.
      • Kasumi (Misty in the dub) is very flirty and promiscuous in the original version. She often introduces herself to other characters as 'Sekai no Bishoujo' which more or less means the world's hottest girl. She often uses the -chan and -sama honorifics to address herself given her mood and situation (-chan when she's playful and cute, -sama when she thinks she's the hottest thing in the room) and even makes little tangents with prayers to God why such a 'pure maiden is cursed with this beauty' and often talked about love and even referred to her Pokemon as 'steadies'. Needless to say, the removal of all this in the dub made her a much less stand-out character.
      • Takeshi (Brock) was also toned down in the dub. In the original, he was not above asking girls if they were 18, or stating that he would 'enjoy' them when they turned eighteen. This makes other characters getting mad at his flirting a bit more understandable in certain instances.
      • Shigeru (Gary) became a Jerkass in the dub, so much so that characters like Takeshi and Kasumi who respected and were impressed by him in the original are rewritten to say they hate his guts and call him despicable despite never even meeting him before. He casually throws around words like 'loser', and phases like 'smell you later' and generally written as more of a villain than a friendly rival, although this is a bit closer to his video game counterpart Green/Blue. He and Satoshi (Ash) mutually respect each other in the original, which made 4Kids rewritting of them become exposed when the end of the Johto League touched upon their childhood friendship.
      • Very few of these changes were rejected by fans of the show, though.
  • Pokémon Chronicles got so many plot changes it's almost a completely different series than the original Japanese version. This is most evident in the Non Indicative TV Special The Legend of Thunder.
    • The entire premise of the second and third seasons of Yu-Gi-Oh!, originally a personal quest of self-discovery for each major character, was completely replaced with the generic "villain plotting to take over the world" plot. The final season was also outrageously tampered with due to the particularly high body count that had to get sent to the Shadow Realm.
      • Read this website for a comprehensive list of the graphical and dialogue changes introduced in the Yu-Gi-Oh! dub.
      • With that said, Shaman King, a show with death, blood, possession and slapping, got away with what many consider to be one of 4kids' better dubs and kept a lot of the aforementioned in. The fact that the big bad, Hao beats seven shades of crap out of Yoh, then proceeds to rip Yoh's soul out of his body and eat it whole during the endgame arc was all shown in the dub had several busybody self-appointed independent TV watchdog groups slamming the show. Of course, by that point, bad scheduling had done all the damage to Shaman King's US reputation that was going to be done and 4Kids went on to do One Piece.
    • It gets worse: Tokyo Mew Mew was initially touted by 4Kids as "Hollywood Mew Mew". Al Kahn is quoted in a press release for this as having said "By the time we localize the programs, kids don't even know they're from Japan any more."
    • Truly, the effects of 4Kids' dub of One Piece have to be seen to be believed. By utterly flensing the series, they managed to take the most popular shonen franchise in Japan since Dragon Ball and effectively bury it in the West. Needless to say, this infuriated Toei, who basically doused 4Kids' reputation in rotten excrement, which drove off all their business and led to the company practically abandoning anime entirely.
  • 4Kids' butchering of Tokyo Mew Mew into Mew Mew Power is particularly memorable in how awful it was. Among other things, it changed every character's age so they'd all be in their late teens, changed every name into something unfitting, painfully generic, or just plain stupid, had Masaya finding out Ichigo is a Mew Mew WAY too soon (and immediately made that episode (originally episode #12, moved to #1) Canon Discontinuity), actually edited a written date into tater tots in one episode, chose terrible voices for most of the characters, with four of the five Mew Mews sounding almost exactly alike, replaced the original music with poorly-written bubblegum pop, and changed the theme of the show from "fun magical girl adventure with subtle and enjoyable environment protection messages" to "a bunch of shallow valley-girls talk about dating and make cat puns for 22 minutes". Rumor even has it that 4Kids lost the rights to the show when Mia Ikumi forcibly took the rights away after sending them a very angry email about how they destroyed the series.
    • Actually, according to Tom Wayland, 4Kids chose not to license the second half of the series because they couldn't secure a merchandising deal for the show, even though it was the top show on 4Kids TV.
      • Sadly, that didn't stop Animax Hungary to buy the 4kids! version instead of the original.
        • 75% of the countries around the world actually got the 4Kids dub as a reference, 80% of whom also stopped production at episode 26. The countries that did get the 4Kids dub and licensed future episodes varied in production. The French dub of the second half of the show continued to use their original voices and character names, though they restored the original musical theme (with a French translation of the Japanese themes song). The second half of the Hebrew dub continued to use the same voices, but they began to use translations of the original names and attacks. The Portuguese dub of the second half completely ignored the dub of the first half using different names, attack terms, and yes, the entire voice cast was replaced.
  • Nelvana, a Canadian distribution studio, edited Cardcaptor Sakura and turned it into "Cardcaptors". While their dub Anglcized the characters names and censored some of the more controversial relationships (such as Toya/Yukito and Rika's love for her teacher), it was otherwise passable for a Saturday morning dub. However, the US broadcast on Kids WB! is the one most people remember, since it was extremely hacked up and rewritten. In a rather clumsy attempt to widen the show's appeal beyond its original demographic, half the first season was cut out or chopped up into flashback sequences, the episode order changed drastically, and the scripts were rewritten, turning supporting character Syaoran Li into a lead character alongside the original heroine. At the same time, a much more accurate subtitled version was released on tape and DVD under the original name; the DVD version of the original sold so much better that the dub version was discontinued.
  • Vision of Escaflowne was edited in a similar way by Fox. Most of the drama was removed or rendered incoherent, and the resulting mess was quickly canceled. Furthermore, the first episode was cut entirely because of Fox's concerns that the Hitomi-centric episode would make boys think it was a "girls show". The uncut version by Ocean Group was released on DVD in 2003, and the edited-for-TV version was mercifully forgotten by most.
    • The German dub of the series was admittedly produced by translating the French dub, not the original Japanese. The result was... rather deviating in both meaning and feel from the original.
  • Transformers goes both ways!
    • When Beast Wars, a rather darkish series with somewhat outlandish comic relief moments at times, was dubbed into Japanese, it received a Gag Dub with no sense of self-restraint whatsoever. A lot of Japanese transformers fans were quite unhappy with this.
      • Not to mention the fact that the female Airrazor was dubbed into being a younger male. This made things a bit awkward at Dubville when Airrazor became Tigatron's lover in season 2.
      • When FOX decided to publish the show (instead of syndication) they removed most of the fight scenes because of decapitation and other "too violent" acts. Despite everyone being a robot. And despite it ruining the pacing and length of the episodes. Thank goodness for the DVD release.
    • By contrast, American fans were quite pleased with 2001's Transformers: Robots in Disguise which rewrote the bland Transformers: Car Robots as a Gag Dub maybe-sequel to the Transformers Generation 1 cartoon. Its endearingly quirky characters and the added Mythology Gags were a surprise hit in America, while Car Robots had done so badly in Japan that it was pulled from television before airing its finale. The changes eventually cross-pollinated back to Japan; an official timeline from TakaraTomy now places Car Robots between seasons of the original cartoon, jamming it sideways in order to do so. In America it's simply considered one of many alternate universes.
    • In Transformers Cybertron, the supposed sequel to Transformers Armada and Transformers Energon, the original Japanese version was written as an independent series. Unfortunately, Hasbro had already planned to market Cybertron as a continuation of the first two when Galaxy Force came out, and had to shoehorn in a few lines about the "Unicron Singularity" warping the very fabric of reality itself as an explanation for the canon dissonance, and even then had to put in 3 manufactured shots of the 2 previous series' characters during the series finale in a desperate attempt to make the whole thing work.
      • Ironically, Galaxy Force has since been rectonned into Micron Legend continuity in Japan.
      • For an even bigger headache... putting Galaxy Force in continuity with Micron Legend and Super Link is not the same as putting Cybertron in continuity with Armada and Energon. Cybertron, similar to Robots in Disguise, takes a cast of mostly new characters (even if several are Expies) and makes them new versions of known characters. Making them one continuity doesn't necessarily make a single character out of "Doubleface" and "Noisemaze" (both known to us as Sideways) even though they're both horn-headed insignia/switching mysterious double-agents.
      • Cybertron is generally agreed to have been a better show than Armada and Energon however, thanks to both a far more entertaining localization which allowed the voice actors to act again, and not being Armada or Energon.
  • Digimon added a few throwaway lines for humor such as "Matt, you whimper more than my puppy!" from Tai, who had a cat but no puppy, and "I'm even starting to miss my baby brother!" from Mimi, who was an only child.
    • The Filipino dub of Digimon Adventure 02 is an interesting variation in that, while the Americanized terminologies and some names are used, the original unedited Japanese episodes are used and the Japanese script and episode titles are mostly adhered to, and most of the cast is referred to by their original names except, strangely, for Hikari and Miyako who are, respectively, referred to as Kari and Kyo. Arguably, this may be more of a case of Woolseyism. The Mexican dub is also like this, but uses all the US dub names.
      • Speaking of the Mexican dub, a similar case happened with Sailor Moon. They translated all of the original unedited seasons (including the Beach Episode, and minus the Clip Show preview episode), using the American names from the first two seasons. Because at that time the other three seasons weren't yet translated to English, they used the original Japanese names for the new characters for the rest of the series, resulting in a mix of US names and Japanese names in one single dub. That didn't stop the series from being highly successful in Latin America, however, thanks to a faithful translation and quality voice acting.
      • Actually, the scripts used for the Filipino dub of at least 02 were later discovered to mostly be drafts of Saban scripts for the dub. Miyako was originally slated to be called Keely, and then Kyo, until someone in production decided to drop the K and combine the yo with Lei (from Terri-Lei O'Malley's name) to make Yolei.
      • To further the confusion, there were at least two Filipino dubs. The first is described in the post directly above this one. The Hero TV version is the one described in the original post above about the Filipino dub.
    • Finnish dub referred to "Kamiya"... In first episode.
      • The factor of Inconsistent Dub is amplified further by the fact that after 26 episodes, the original dubbing group (the notorious - and not only for their So Bad It's Good Digimon Adventure dub - Agapio Racing Team) dropped the series, getting replaced with the much better Werne. The new dub still had some inconsistencies, though. The Agapio dub was basically cut and paste translation refined to it's logical conclusion. For example, all the attacks of the Mons were given new Narmy Finnish names, often straight-out, word-to-word translations. "Heaven's Knuckle" might sound really cool in English, but I assure you, the corresponding Finnish attack name is anything but cool - especially when performed by a voice actor that is just reading the attack name from the script without any attempt to make the acting have any feeling in it.
    • The Middle Eastern dub of Digimon erased all references to the taboo concept of "Evolution" (which the series really doesn't even use), instead having the monsters shout out "Switching Out For My Big Brother!" whenever they evolved. The "Big Brothers" were kept on a supposedly off-screen base that was referenced repeatedly in dialogue. As one might expect, this made a lot of the series incomprehensible.
    • But the real job in American Digimon is the second season's Non-Serial Movie, Digimon Hurricane Touchdown!/The Golden Digimentals. It was combined with two short anime movies about the kids from the first season, both of which are canon, so it had to be cracked apart and restitched back together to make it gel with them. Rumor has it that Digimon: The Movie was so altered that the Screen Actors Guild said it no longer counted as a dub and ordered that the actors be paid the same as they would be if it were an original work.
      • According to Jeff Nimoy, he wanted to make that movie separate from the other two (which he was going to combine), but the producers told him to mix them all together, forcing him to re-write the translation/script and creating the dub we have in America today.
  • To prevent children from learning that perverts exist, the French translation of City Hunter turned Ryo Saeba into a fanatic vegetarian who liked to eat in vegetarian restaurants, rather than a pervert who liked to invite girls to love hotels.
    • In Argentina, there is a non-anime cartoon series called City Hunters with that exact same premise, only with animation (supposedly) supplied by the great Milo Manara, and funded by Axe Deodorant (hence, the series claiming it being "powered by Axe"). Any relation?
  • Mega Man NT Warrior is more or less given the cold stare from the Mega Man Battle Network fandom for being a total mess of changed names, edited scenes that really didn't needed to be edited out and other things besides. It's considered a good thing by the fandom that Axess was the last in the Rockman.EXE series to get translated. The truly annoying part is that the franchise already had English names and translations because the source material (the Battle Network series of video games) had been available in America for years, unnecessarily leaving many characters with three (or more!) names. Even many battle chips were censored that are key chips in the games that presumably the show is trying to help promote. Bizarrely, ShoPro, the studio behind it, also handles the much better Naruto dub.
    • Back in the day, you could get away with using the English game names in an otherwise rabid community, as long as you stayed clear of "NT Warrior".
    • Mega Man Star Force held up a bit better; the only real change is combining every pair of 10-minute episodes into a half-hour block. (But again, some of the human NPCs have three names now, notably Hibiki Misora/Sonia Strumm/Sonia Skye. And the name "Omega-Xis" still sounds funny...)
  • Tekkaman Blade got a fairly standard Macekre-ish dubbing into Teknoman for release in English-speaking countries. Oddly enough, after a Full Run In Australia, the series was Macekred even more before being released in the US.
  • Science Ninja Team Gatchaman wins a lifetime achievement award for this trope. There have been five separate English dubs of various parts of the franchise: Battle of the Planets, G-Force: Guardians of Space, Eagle Riders, the Urban Vision dub of the Gatchaman OVA, and finally ADV Films' dub of the original series. The ADV dub is the only one of these that didn't have character names and plot points rewritten wholesale.
    • The first of these adaptations, Battle of the Planets, is generally thought to be its own separate entity due to the amount of censorship and rewrites that went into it, along with the newly-added Off-Model animation made to cover up the missing material. Pretty much considered an early example of a Macekre, even with its better points.
  • The German dub of Naruto is hilarious. They took the (moderately) edited American version and edited it even further, going as far as erasing any Nosebleed. Apart from Never Say "Die" taken to the extreme (Orochimaru suggested Kabuto he'd have to "hide Sasuke forever"), they also often make weapons look like lightsabers, cut out attacking-scenes altogether and have still-standing scenes on par with Dragonball Z. You may guess how things like the Haku-Zabuza arc looked like. Furthermore, they cut the entire backstory with Kyuubi attacking the village. If that isn't enough, the german opening.
    • The second anime OP fared no better.
    • Furthermore, the TV Station responsible for this forbade the voice actors from acting too dramatic? Even the actors themselves complained about this with the german One Piece dub...
  • Samurai Pizza Cats was a big one as well. Saban never got the original scripts for it, so just made up dialogue that fit the images on screen and the Mouth Flaps. And it worked, too -- the show was hilarious.
    • Brought into debate by an interview with one of the writers, who swears he had a script to work from, in Engrish. (Interestingly, the writer was also the voice actor for Lord Zedd.)
  • The Force Five were sloppily edited versions of some awesome Super Robot shows made to promote the Shogun Warriors toys by Jim Terry's American Way company.
    • Jim Terry was also responsible for Crushers, a 1988 dubbed version of the Crusher Joe movie with 40 minutes cut out.
    • Also from Terry was Time Fighters and Time Fighters in the Land of Fantasy, a pair of 95-minute features cobbled together from episodes of the first Time Bokan series.
  • Uchuu Senkan Yamato/Star Blazers
    • The names were changed to supposedly "spacey" futuristic-y things. Kodai Susumu -> Derek Wildstar? Yuki Mori -> Nova.
    • Everything had the usual edited-out dead bodies. (Honestly, they looked more like one-color mannequins anyway.)
    • The speech given by Kodai in Season 1, episode 24 was lessened.
Cquote1.svg

Kodai: "We weren't meant to fight! WE WERE MEANT TO LOVE EACH OTHER! Victory...?

Cquote2.svg
    • Dessler's (Desslok's) chant was changed from something like "Long live my lord!" to the more catchy "Desslok Desslok Deeeeeesslok!"
    • In the US version of Season 1, Nova went into a "coma" from the poisonous radioactive gas released into the ship by Desslok. In the Japanese version, she actually died (explaining the freaked-out looks on some of the other Star Force members' faces when he takes her onto the bridge) and was revived by the Desslok Cannon.
    • In Season 3, the Bolar Wars, they gave the Pillsbury-Doughboy-like Big Bad a ridiculous Russian accent that detracts from his pasty-white creepiness.
    • Also, they conveniently forget to remind us that Iskandar was destroyed, so the Star Force can't go there for the new Earth. And the very weird final battle was weirded even more due to bad translation of the "Black Hole Gun".
    • You know the random dude whose parents died in the sun? Well, rather than having some Character Development he just ends up doing some random things like peeling potatoes even though he's a fully trained fighter pilot and then dying in a half-pointless Heroic Sacrifice.
    • The Comet Empire movie. The one where they all die. Like 20 minutes were cut out, Desslok sounds like a whiny Emo Teen immediately negating the Tear Jerker of his absolutely tragic suicide, and (this applies to the TV season too) Advisor Invidia was somehow transformed into Princess Invidia.
  • "Knights of the Zodiac", the English broadcast dub (though not the ADV Films dub) of Saint Seiya tried to eliminate all references to death, excessive violence and religion out of a show about saints of the Greek goddess Athena fighting holy wars against the servants of a corrupt pope. And that's not even taking into account changing a ridiculous amount of blood into "spiritual energy" and giving the Siberian a surfer's accent.
  • Revolutionary Girl Utena was Macekred into Ursula's Kiss by Enoki Films. About the only thing that survived were Juri's and Miki's names, and only because there was a close English equivalent. Central Park Media's release of the series, on the other hand, has no such problems.
    • The Enoki Films names were used in the Latin American Spanish version. And the title was changed to "El Anillo Mágico" (The Magic Ring). These were the only changes. Everything else was left alone and shown on weekend mornings as if it were a show for kids...
  • The Spanish translation for the Hayate the Combat Butler manga removes almost all of the non-visual Shout-Out gags (Despite them being one of the pillars of the series' humor.), with the few ones left being made extremely obvious, uses awful slang when it doesn't fit at all, translates untranslatable words yet leaves perfectly translatable words in Japanese, and other such issues. Worst of all (And most fitting for the trope), the White Day mini-arc got any mentions of the words "White Day" entirely removed (Or any mention of there being a holiday, for that matter), turning a standard Manga High School plot into a random and contrived story, despite minor stuff getting translation notes. The same translator handles Negima and Bobobo-Bo Bo-bobo, and they all also suffer the same kind of issues, plus the former gave one of the Anime Chinese Girls a horrible Chinese accent that doesn't fits her and that she never had, yet the other Anime Chinese Girl, who used actual "Chinese-speak" in the original, doesn't have an accent, and the latter series gets translator notes for stuff that is being read on panel (Accurately read, case you were wondering).
  • The official English translation of Mahou Sensei Negima! can be quite spotty depending on who's doing the translation; volumes 5, 20, and 21 all mess around with the translation a bit. Volume 1 is worst though, as entire conversations were completely rewritten to be lead-ins to (bad) jokes, and it was stuffed full of pointless pop culture references; the only thing saving the volume being the Narm Charm. Fortunately, Kodansha USA noticed, and now that they're in charge of the English release, the translation quality has improved and the first three volumes are being retranslated.
  • In 1985, staff in the USA combined footage from GoShogun and Aku Daisakusen Srungle, a similar show produced by Kokusai Eiga-sha, to form Macron-1, which portrays the Srungle characters as being part of another branch of the organization fighting evil in a parallel universe. This combined series was produced and released in the United States by Saban.
    • The US version involves test pilot David Chance travelling into a parallel universe under the tyrannical control of an organization called GRIP, led by Dark Star. Chance's entrance into the other universe allows GRIP to send their forces to Earth, leaving Dark Star's cyborg henchman Orn to remain in control in the alternate universe. GRIP is opposed by the two teams of Macron-1, the first led by Dr. Shegall and his team on Earth (from the GoShogun footage), while in the alternate universe Chance organizes a band of rebel warriors, Beta Command, to combat and overthrow Orn (from the Srungle footage). The Beta Command members were given much less screen time than the Earth team.
      • The dubbed US version was voiced by the same cast as Carl Macek's Harmony Gold adaptation of Macross, Genesis Climber Mospeada, and others into Robotech.
  • The English Dragonball Z fall into this trope, particularly the Freeza arc. Chris Sabat has stated that this is largely due to the fact that nobody had any idea what they were doing and the English scripts they received from Japan were near incomprehensible at times, leading to them just making shit up for a while. Fortunately, It Gets Better once they started progressing further on. The Cell Saga is more accurate, but still rife with poor dialogue changes (Example: The addition of a redundant monologue in Gohan's SSJ2 Transformation, while the original simply had a insert song play through the scene). The Buu Saga however is the most accurate in the series, the lines are generally close to the original. FUNimation re-dubbed the Saiyan Saga but unfortunatly they barely changed the inaccurate script from the earlier {Ocean Group} Dub. They only fixed particularly inaccurate lines (such as claims by Vegeta, that Bardock was a Scientist).
  • The French version of Ranma ½ can compete with the worst American butchering of anime. Except for the main character's first name, all the names were changed to French ones -- and they couldn't even stay consistent throughout the series. The voice actors overall aren't much to blame as they were doing a good job, but they could only work with what was given to them... including some characters switching voice from one episode to the other. And there were plenty of cuts to make the series more child-friendly, especially concerning nudity or Happosai's Dirty Old Man behavior -- he was supposed not to collect underwear but silk handkerchiefs. This certainly limited the popularity of Ranma ½ in France for a while compared to other countries. The manga translation was of rather poor quality too, but at least the characters (mostly) kept their original names.
    • A similar thing happened with Ranma ½ in Mexico. Although only one character's name was changed (and then restored), there was atrocious butchering of scenes to eliminate nudity, episodes aired out of order, and it eliminated some characters' trademark speech patterns, like Kuno's poetry or Shampoo's pidgin speak.
    • Notably averted with the German dub, which only changed Ryoga's name rather randomly to "Dyoga", but stayed faithful to the original otherwise; no instances of nudity were edited out, and Never Say "Die" was not put into effect. "Notable" because it used to air on the very channel that would later go on to bring us the butchered Naruto dub noted further up the page. Curiously, the series has yet to be re-broadcast, probably because of a higher threshold for what constitutes suitable viewing for children on German TV.
  • Hokuto no Ken came to France in the 90s and because at the time animation for adults was a completely foreign concept for French producers, it was broadcasted with kids' shows and a hilariously terrible hackjob of a dub was made to make the show more suitable for a young audience, with terrible puns everywhere, very silly names given to iconic combat moves and several scenes getting cut off for being too gory. Old clips of Hokuto No Ken's French dub still circulate on the Internet to this day, for every French-speaking web user's pleasure.

Film


Manga

  • Anyone who has read the US manga version of Battle Royale will run into some outcry against what writer Keith Giffen did to the story's dialogue. To be fair, this was not entirely his fault, as he was simply following orders from Tokyopop. In fact, Tokyopop later explained why they allowed Giffen to mess with the original script. It's also worth mentioning that none of the violence and sex got cut, so plenty of what (author) Koushun Takami and (artist) Masayuki Taguchi's work for the Japanese version remains intact. Still, what Giffen did to the plot will make any Battle Royale loyalist cringe. The long list of changes would require an entire sub-page, but here is the gist of Giffen's more infamous alterations:
    • The premise of The Program changed from a government experiment to a reality TV show (like a more literal Survivor). Standing alone, it's not so bad, except that this would require much more meticulous audio-visual monitoring than the story later suggests (which is a big problem when readers realize this is a very key plot point near the story's end).
    • Heavily altered dialogue, usually with tons of cursing and hip diction. As a result, too many characters sound similar and more juvenile than they should. A few lines even sound sloppy and vague when compared to its novel counterpart.
    • The context of numerous events were changed or added through the aforementioned dialogue, even though a lot of them were never implied or existed in the first place (and when reading the novel, it stands out a lot more). Much of this was done to make the manga Darker and Edgier, but there's little reason to imply more rapes or atrocities when the premise is pretty bleak as it is.
    • Too many misplaced references to American culture. Teens from an isolated version of Japan (i.e., the Greater East Republic of Asia in Battle Royale's universe) should not be name checking Ed Gein or Donald Trump, or comparing themselves to characters from Oliver Stone's Natural Born Killers.
    • For one character, Giffen even went so far as to state that her family was Catholic (or at least Christian), even though less than 1% of Japanese citizens identify themselves as Christians. More importantly, the original story never even implied that the aforementioned character had religious beliefs.
      • How is that DNDTR? "Less than 1%" is too vague to work with, but let's say it's 1%; in that case, with 42 children on the Program the statistical chance of at least one Christian is better than one in three.
      • For one, Japan's populace is mostly atheist compared to America. Only a rough third are religious, with the majority being Buddhist or Shintoist. Anyone who's watched/played Japanese based media won't go too long without spotting imagery from either religion. In contrast, Christianity has so little Japanese representation, the only thing they recognize are Virgin Mary statues and Jesus memorabilia (likewise, how many Americans practice Buddhism or have even heard of Shintoism?). Going back to Battle Royale, since Tokyopop wanted it to have more mainstream appeal, giving the character a Christian background would make her more "relatable" to Americans. While it's possible that the section could have been altered for the manga, fan scans of the Japanese manga have discovered that the Christian slant was NOT Takami or Taguchi's intent. In this case, the DNDTR aspect goes two ways, since Giffen ignored the novel's material from the start (which caused this and other errors). Still, as stated before, Tokyopop had a hand with these grievous moves as much as Giffen did.
  • The US edition of Ikki Tousen is filled to the brim with shout outs.