Saturday, December 18, 2010

Translation: Daimajin Kanon Episode 18

Here we are, down to the last 1/3 of the show! Things are getting crazy, but more importantly... hopeful! (Note another slight change to the opening narration!)

I'm going to try to phrase my main translator's note in more general terms. Mostly because I don't want to spoil what happens in this episode, but also because I'll take any excuse to talk about Japanese linguistic development.

(If you've studied Japanese, you can probably skip over this-- it's just an explanation of on and kun readings.)

A bit over 1000 years ago, Japanese culture received a huge wave of influence from China. One of the things they ended up importing was their writing system. Chinese was to Japan what Latin was to early European culture -- the language you had to speak and write if you wanted to be taken seriously.

Of course, over time, the Chinese writing system was adapted to write Japanese, as well. The result of this is that even today (much to the frustration of many a Western college student) there are usually at least two ways to read any given Japanese pictograph: a Chinese reading, and a Japanese reading.

For instance, the pictograph 元 can be read "Gen" in 元気 (Genki), or it can be "Moto" in 足元 (Ashimoto). 小 can be read as "Shou" in 小学 (Shougaku), or as "Ko" in 小町 (Komachi). Etc.

Presented now, for your consideration, are the Chinese and Japanese readings of three other relevant pictographs:

大: Chinese: Dai; Japanese: O
魔: Chinese: Ma; Japanese: Ma
人: Chinese: Jin; Japanese: Hito


Edit 12/31/2010: Changed a few lines in the Kanon/Kotaro scene.

Edit 1/11/2010: Fixed an inconsistency in the opening narration. Thanks for the heads up, reader Crus!)

NARRATION: This is the story of a girl who wished to have faith in people, then used her singing voice to summon a miracle. A 21st century fable.

[Opening song]
Someone tells you
Lies like they're true
Someone betrays you
To hide their weakness
In the never-ending flow of tears
A reason for living will show itself
Got to live your life
Believin' in these evil times
Sing your heart out
When you feel the love
A song that reflects you
As far as your voice can carry...
Let it ring!
Sing your heart out
When you feel the love
It will surely reach
The hearts of all, some day...
Forces harmonize
You will find the prize
Just sing your heart out

NARRATOR: The girl, Kurara, was torn from the music she loved by her mother's controlling nature. Kanon tried to encourage Kurara, but shockingly, the girl chose a life with her mother instead. Kanon felt powerless to stop her.

NARRATOR: Meanwhile, the Onbake learned what lay deep in the Ipadada's heart.

TITLE: Distant Answer

KANON: No matter how good your intentions, getting involved with others has its risks. I felt that with Kurara, too... but I still feel it's wrong not to get involved at all.

[To The Top]
The sound of the rain...

KOTARO: Are you serious?


FUJITA: The board reached some decisions while you were in the hospital. I tried to fight them, of course. But circumstances have made you a bad investment.

KOTARO: So it's just over? ... You've gotta be kidding.

FUJITA: Shinya and Ikki are already looking for a new band.

KOTARO: What about Saki?

FUJITA: She's in New York. Didn't you know she's been wanting to go to America?

FUJITA: She's staying in one of the cheap company-owned apartments there. She's studying.

KOTARO: I wish I could study too.

FUJITA: Too bad you didn't say so earlier.

MESSAGE: Are you at work? Can you get to my room? I want to see you.

MESSAGE: YAY!! We're SO in sync! You caught me just before work! Be right there!

KAENJI: That's...

HASHITAKA: We have to hurry!

SIGN: [Lyrics to Prayer Song]

KANON: What should I do? Oh, what's wrong with me...

TAIHEI: Sounds like you hit a wall, Kanon.

KANON: Whenever I try to revise the lyrics, it all comes out so negative... I guess Kurara is weighing on my mind...

TAIHEI: What's wrong with keepin' it as it is? It's a good song. Come on... try it like this.

KANON: But I feel like it doesn't acknowledge the harsher realities of life.

TAIHEI: Oh yeah?

KANON: You want me to sing it?

[Prayer Song]
When the sound of the bell
Rings through the village
All the birds, together,
Fly back to the mountain

No one wants to be all alone
But each has only one voice
So let's join all our voices together
And bring a smile to everyone

If we all join hands together,
How much warmer will we feel?

BUJIN: That's enough!

BUJIN: I hate that song!

OTAKI: What was that voice!?

TAIHEI: Is that Bujin!?

BUJIN: That is what they call me. My real name is Omahito.

KANON: Omahito?

BUJIN: That voice... are you the Songstress of this era?

KANON: Songstress?

TAIHEI: Oh, you're finally awake... that's great... that's so great!

BUJIN: It is not... what's great about it?

TAIHEI: What do you mean?

BUJIN: The words of that song are a pack of lies!

KANON: The lyrics, you mean?

BUJIN: Never sing it again!

TAIHEI: Wait a minute! What are you talking about!? How is it a lie!? Answer me, Bujin! Bujin!!

KANON: What just happened? What was that voice?

OTAKI: Calm down a moment. We'll explain everything.

IKECHIYO: The truth is, Kanon, Buchinko acts as something of a two-way radio.

IKECHIYO: With his partner, the Onbake Tamakko in Yamagata.

KANON: Tamakko?

TAIHEI: Yeah. Your voice traveled through them to reach Bujin.

KANON: Bujin... you mean, that Omahito person?

TAIHEI: Yeah. He's our predecessor, the first Onbake. Five hundred years ago, events turned so that he closed up his heart and turned to stone.

KANON: Closed up his heart and turned to stone?


KANON: So why did my song wake him up? And why did it make him so angry?

TAIHEI: That's just it. I'm gonna go down there. I'm gonna ask him what part of your song is a lie.

TAIHEI: If I don't do it, no one will!

KANON: Lies, huh?

JYUZO: So Bujin rejected the song, huh? But I was just sure that Songstress 'd get through to him...

KAENJI: Hey! Can you hear me!?

TAMEKICHI: Speak to us!

SAWAMORI: The Ipadada...

GIRL: No way. Really? But he seemed so quiet...

GIRL: Misaki!

GIRL: Hey, Misaki!

KANON: What is it?

GIRL: Um... here, talk to us a moment!

GIRL: Over there!

GIRL: You know Kotaro from 0°C, right?

KANON: Not anymore, really...

GIRL: I was in a restaurant in Roppongi yesterday and I overheard him on the phone... and he...

GIRL: We think he was talking to his girlfriend or something... he was asking her to take on some shady work...

KANON: Shady work?

GIRL: Selling... illegal drugs.

GIRL: Is Kotaro really... that kind of guy?

KANON: I don't know... I don't talk to him anymore.

BOY: She's sleeping.

BOY: And in the same clothes as yesterday.

BOY: What a slob.

BOY: Seriously.

KANON: Fukatsu?

KANAME: Okay, here, take this.

KANON: You tricked me!

KANON: Attending classes for you... it's dishonest.

KANAME: But my grandmother's really sick...

GIRL: It's a big fat lie. We saw her driving off with her boyfriend earlier.

KANON: How can she be so selfish... so content to take advantage of people?

KANON: Ta-da!

KOTARO: What's that?

KANON: I made it! It's 0°C's first official merchandise!

KOTARO: Wow! That's professional quality.

KANON: But this one's just for you and me.

KANAME: What is it?

KANON: Nothing.

KANAME: I see.

SAWAMORI: You're saying Bujin...

TAIHEI: He woke up, then turned right back to stone.

HASHITAKA: It looks like Gonbei really will have to substitute for him...

SAWAMORI: But we expect the Ipadada to become a hecatosoul within the month...

TAIHEI: A hecatosoul...


TAIHEI: But there's no way Gonbei can face something like that...

SAWAMORI: No. We won't let it happen. We'll just have to stop him before then.

TAIHEI: Bujin... I've got to hurry.

KOTARO: Hey, long time no see. Too bad about what happened...

KANON: Are you going out with Fukatsu now?

KOTARO: What makes you say that?

KANON: She had the towel I made for you.

KOTARO: What's wrong? Jealous?

KANON: Don't be an idiot.

KOTARO: We're not doing anything like that, you know. Though she wants it pretty bad...

KANON: What are you talking about?

KOTARO: She does whatever I ask her. It's refreshing.

KANON: I see fame has done nothing for your character, Kotaro.

KOTARO: Hey. Wanna come back to 0°C?

KANON: Go jump off a bridge!

KOTARO: I've been looking for you.

KANAME: No way, why!?

KOTARO: You didn't answer your phone.

KANAME: I'm sorry, the battery ran out!

KOTARO: Come back to my place later.

KOTARO: I've got a big surprise for you.

KANAME: Really? What is it?

OTAKI: You don't even like that girl, do you?

KANON: Well... no.

OTAKI: And yet you're still worried about her. I guess that's just the person you are.

OTAKI: But you shouldn't get involved if you're not entirely committed.

IKECHIYO: I agree. Nothing good can come of it if you're not willing to see it through.

KANON: With Kurara, when push came to shove...

MAMA: She's my daughter. She always comes around to what I say.

KANON: Kurara...

KANON: I really didn't see it through.

IKECHIYO: So what are you going to do?

KANON: I'm going to do everything I can. Even if it makes me a busybody.

KANAME: I'll make some tea.

KANAME: W-Wait a minute...


KOTARO: Maybe we shouldn't. Sorry.

KANAME: Why? I don't mind...

KOTARO: I want to be good to you.

KANAME: Thank you. That makes me so happy...

KOTARO: Listen...


KOTARO: I've got a job for you. Can you do it?

KANAME: What is it?

KOTARO: It pays extremely well. I think you can handle it.

TAIHEI: When Kanon sang the Prayer Song, Bujin said it was a lie!

JYUZO: I guess Bujin's lost faith in it, after all... there might be nothing we can do about it...

TAIHEI: What do you mean, 'after all'?

JYUZO: Ah, well... had a feeling.

TAIHEI: But seriously. I just can't believe he woke up just to go back to sleep. There was a lot I wanted to talk to him about...


KAENJI: Up there...

TOMOSUKE: I haven't been here in a while... I smell girls all around!

KANON: Tomosuke... you're acting like a dirty old man.

KANON: Tomosuke and I asked after Fukatsu everywhere. About what kind of girl she was... and then...

KANON: Her blog?

BOY: Yeah. I hear she had a blog when she was in high school. Maybe you could check that out.

KANON: At last, someone from her old high school gave me the URL of her blog.

SAWAMORI: We have to hurry.

KANON: It was the saddest thing I've ever seen...

[Ending Song]
When I look up, I can still see stars
In the strip of sky between the buildings
Faintly, but I love them
Those little interwoven points of light
I'll send positive words for kindness in the future
And leave my sadness to the wind!
I'm walking home again today
'til I can walk to the place where he waits for me
I'm walking home with that song on my lips
Because I want to smile up at the blue skies
And so, I'm taking my time with my dreams

NARRATOR: Kanon races to expose Kotaro's trap. Taihei rebukes Bujin for his words. And Tomosuke shows his love of milk.

NARRATOR: Next time: 'Tragic Warmth'

No comments:

Post a Comment