One area where I’m rather less impressed with the Japanese dub is the episode titles. Now, it’s possible that the Japanese titles have clever puns I’m not seeing, but at least as translated back into English they’re pretty lackluster so far:
1: Welcome to Ponyville (English: The Mare in the Moon)
2: Friendship Is Magic (English: The Elements of Harmony)
3: Whose Ticket? (English: The Ticket Master)
4: I Can Do It Myself! (English: Applebucking Season)
I’m impressed with the way the Japanese dub handled a couple of puns in “Applebucking Season.” Translating puns is really hard, so I’m glad they pulled off these two:
- When Pinkie Pie asks for a cup of flour, and Applejack misinterprets that as “cup of sour” and goes for lemons, in the Japanese it relies on the similarity between Japanese words for “flour” and “yellow,” so she adds the lemons on the grounds that they’re yellow. Fits the visuals, and works perfectly in the context, keeping the spirit of the pun intact without losing the sense of the scene. Well played!
- Later, the “baked goods”/”baked bads” pun is replaced with a pun based on the similarities between the Japanese words keeki (cake) and keiki (condition), to have Pinkie say something like “We ate the cake, and it gave us this condition.” Again, keeps the flow of the scene and the fact that there’s a pun there, but puts in something that actually works in Japanese.
I continue to be really impressed with the quality of the Japanese dub.
Finally saw the second episode of Tomodachi wa Mahou, and wow. I thought the voice casting on the Mane Six was good, but Steven Magnet? One-hundred percent absolutely perfect. The voice director is clearly not only paying close attention to the English voices, but actually playing them for the Japanese actors. There’s no other explanation for how closely he matches the tone.
Is it just me, or is Hasbro being MUCH more aggressive about getting Japanese MLP episodes pulled off YouTube than English episodes?
Wow, I think the Japanese dub is even cuter. Spike’s voice makes him immediately more likable (it helps that he’s not really a jerk at all in the first episode, of course), Rainbow Dash and Rarity have absolutely perfect voices, Applejack’s now genki, which is sort of like almost having a personality… it’s really good!
Also I love the opening credits and hate the closing credits.