Reactions to Psycho-Pass (ep 12)

This is kind of interesting.

I was randomly browsing for screencaps of Kunizuka and stumbled across a Japanese blog.  What’s so interesting about that, you might ask.

Well, it translates reactions/responses to Psycho-Pass from MyAnimeList into Japanese!  I found that a bit interesting, since the only instances where I’ve seen people translate non-celebrity-or-important-ish people’s stuff (e.g. not Word of God tweets or seiyuu blogs or stuff from official sources) is translations of random 4chan anon stuff into English.

Source material: http://myanimelist.net/forum/?topicid=544123
Translation (into Japanese): http://cough.cocolog-nifty.com/blog/2013/01/psycho-pass-12-.html

It’s kind of… funny to me, in a sense?  That someone out there considers the people on MAL (and their opinions) important enough to translate.  You might wonder why — or you might not, and I really don’t care either way — but it’s funny to me because… 90% of the people talking about Psycho-Pass on MAL don’t even know what they’re saying.  And I wish this was only me being elitist (which I am, actually) but it’s not.  For example, I was terribly confused when someone started talking about a “loved Inspector”.  Who were they referring to, in the context of ep 12?  Further reading revealed that it was none other than Sasayama.  You know, the jerk who kept sexually harassing Kunizuka and Karanomori and then got plastinated by that high school teacher?  Yeah, him.

So… there are people out there who can’t even be arsed to remember Sasayama’s a) not an Inspector but an Enforcer, or that b) Kougami already said Sasayama was a bit of a douchebag.  I thought (b) was fairly memorable, since people usually don’t speak ill of the dead, and paint a lovely rose-tinted version of how they were.  But Kougami speaks frankly to Akane about Sasayama when she asked about what sort of person Sasayama was.  And I mean, sure, I hate misogynistic jerkass douchebags as much as the next person, but do I think he deserved to be turned into… that pile of unrecognisable, plastinated flesh and bone because of it?  No.  And yet these are the people who seem somehow ‘surprised’ that he was a jerk, or that he was ‘loved’ despite being such a jerk.  I’m sure we ALL have someone in our lives who is unbearable in some way or another, and yet we still tolerate (and love, and whose death we would mourn) because we just do.

Or — and I admit this is more of a personal pet peeve than anything — someone who doesn’t even remember Kunizuka Yayoi’s name.  Despite it, you know, being mentioned like twenty times in the show this episode.  She’s just “ponytail woman”.  I mean, I can think of a better name off the top of my head: “the (lady/woman/female) Enforcer”.  “The woman with the ponytail”.  I don’t know.  I feel like “ponytail woman” reduces her to something she’s not.  Probably would go over as well as me calling Kougami “hedgehog dude”.

Or people who can’t even spell ‘Sibyl’.  Or people who think Sasayama’s ‘badass” (???).  How… badass is it to treat civilians as “she’s pretty much a criminal, let’s just finish her off along with him too! :D”?  How badass is it to be happy about blowing people up?  Like, really?  And in case Sasayama kind of forgot, he’s a latent criminal too.  He could easily be on the ‘being blown up’ side of things.  And from his language it sounds like he wants to blow the hostage up instead of subduing her with a paralysing shot — because a) Dominator will /not/ authorise a paralysing shot on her anyway, since her Coefficeint isn’t over 100 (it’s 98.3) and b) Dominator will only authorise a lethal shot because the only person they can shoot is the hostage taker’s, whose Coefficient easily exceeds the threshold for a lethal shot.

And again, this is more of a personal preference sort of thing, but — people are saying this OP sucks like the previous one didn’t.  :D  (I’ll agree this one sucks more than the previous one though.  The previous one was more atmospheric, and this new OP is just cacophonous.  I didn’t really like the thinness of the vocals in the old one though.)  The EDs by EGOIST were nice though.

Or oh oh oh, this one takes the cake — someone who thought Kunizuka was Akane this episode.  Yes, yes, I think Kunizuka looks just like Akane too!  You know, if she dyed her hair brown, cut her hair, put in some contacts, completely changed her personality, chopped off her feet to shave off several inches from her height, and had a vocal chord surgery!  How amazing is it that great minds think alike?

Or, oh yes, someone who likes Kunizuka’s old look because, and I quote,

cause more of Yayoi’s chest shows. Them I did not think her breasts were that big. That’s pretty big IMO. I will leave at that and Yayoi sure has a nice body. No wonder Yuri Blondie likes it. It’s quite firm too.

Thank you, Mr. Self-professed-34-year-old Neanderthal.  Thank you ever so much.  I suspect he has either never actually touched breasts in his (self-professed) thirty-four years of existence, or has only felt up women who’ve had breast implants.  Breasts, for those not in the know, do not act like a) water balloons, b) wobbly jelly, or c) silicone.  Having a firm spot/lump in one’s breasts is probably cause for alarm.  And, a cursory check of his MAL profile reveals that he claims to be a ‘proud virgin’.  Yes, I rest my case.

Could probably be more of a convincing ‘proud virgin’ if, you know, he wouldn’t actually want to shove his Tab A into the nearest Slot B if he could.  Too bad women tend to dislike misogynistic jackasses.

A hint to all virgin heterosexual/bisexual males out there: Please, for the love of everything beautiful and euphonous, do not ever pretend to know how breasts or vaginas feel like unless you’ve actually touched or have had contact with them in any meaningful way.  It’s really obvious when you’re just making it up, okay?  And it sounds really pathetic, so don’t do it.  This might come as a surprise to you, but… anime, hentai, and porn do not represent women’s bodies accurately.

N.B.  ‘Proud virgins’ probably don’t call themselves proud virgins.  Celibacy, abstinence, etc. are all probably better words.  Calling yourself a ‘proud virgin’ is kind of like… stamping your own forehead with ‘I’m a loser who can’t get laid but still desperately wishes to lose my virginity… why won’t (wo)men like me? =(‘ in bright red ink.

Ah, sorry.  Before I got so wonderfully derailed by Mr. Neanderthal, I was talking about translating stuff in English into Japanese!  I also found it interesting because of said blogger’s views — the blog title says, “The overseas impression of episode 12 is that Sibyl System takes the place of a dictator in a fascist government”.  I’ve always found it interesting that in Japan, the only distinction made is “Japan” or “not in Japan”.  You see this a lot when you’re signing up for things — either they don’t provide any option for people living out of Japan (like, there isn’t even an “Other” category when you have to choose the location you’re from), or at best they provide 海外 (living abroad).  It’s kind of cute… when Japan only takes up 0.074% of the Earth’s whole surface area (377,944 km2/510,072,000  km2, according to The Other Wiki).

Anyway, that whole ‘overseas/abroad’ category… is then further condensed into one individual’s opinions.  Even cuter.  Even if a) I also live abroad and b) I see it as a fascist government as well.

And it’s interesting to see how translating from English to Japanese works.  The blogger/translator in question made a point of checking each person’s MAL profile to see whether they listed themselves as male or female, and translated accordingly (since speech patterns are quite different for those who want to present as masculine and those who want to present as feminine — at the very least you have to know which first-person pronoun to use! e.g. watashi, atashi, ore, boku, and so on).

And the blogger makes really wide generalisations about ‘overseas anime fans’ —

これまでが凄く高評価だっただけに、やや不満げなコメントがありました。
Thus far [overseas fans] have only had praise for this series.  Finally we see them express displeasure in their comments.

どんなアニメでもそうですが、海外のアニメファンは常に全力疾走を望むようです。
This extends to other series as well, but overseas fans seem to expect and want series to be fast-paced constantly.
時には緩急も必要でしょう。
A change of pace is necessary at times too, surely.

Since I’ve linked to the the post in question, it would be really fun (and kind of meta!) if s/he were to read this.  :D  In any case, I find the wiiiide generalisations amusing.  Can’t really help it if the people who post on the MAL discussion forums are impatient and prefer fast-paced stuff, can you?  It would probably make as much sense if I went and said something preposterous like, “All Japanese people are pitiful otaku.”  <– that’s just… being derisive and racist, really.  Gotta love Japan and its xenophobia. <– I’m aware this is a sweeping generalisation, but one that’s actually kind of true for the most part.  You don’t know how many times I’ve read things where Japanese people make derisive comments about people “overseas” in Japanese, as though foreigners couldn’t possibly know how to read or understand their language.

Oh and I wish I found this earlier:

It has Yayoi’s alternate costume, Rina, her fellow band members, and even more interestingly, it has everyone’s heights!  Now we know for a fact Kunizuka and Karanomori’s canonical heights!

Kunizuka Yayoi: 170 cm (5’7″)

Karanomori Shion: 168 cm (5’6″)

Though on second thought, that might not be Shion’s height exactly, since she usually wears heels!  And the relative heights here aren’t for how tall they are, but their height in their usual attire.

Oh, and I took a peek at cosplays of Kunizuka over at Curecos as well.  Nothing stood out to me as particularly ‘in character’.  None of them were… cool enough to be Kunizuka.  They stand funny, like they’re trying too hard to be cool.  But the MySpace angles don’t really work in their favour either.  I’m not that fond of cosplayers who think using the Japanese version of a ‘duck face’ for ALL characters they cosplay is an effective means to anything.

And funnily enough, even though Ginoza is taller than Kougami by 3 cm (see sketch above), a lot of girls seem to like to cosplay as Ginoza (?).  And they put their tallest guy as Kougami.

P.S. Does anyone else think Kunizuka looks like she could be some sort of space trooper with that outfit?  Come on, I want something cooler for her.  =(  Punk rock?  Goth?  Something.  Preferably with her hair down.

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13 thoughts on “Reactions to Psycho-Pass (ep 12)

  1. “Or oh oh oh, this one takes the cake – someone who thought Kunizuka was Akane this episode. Yes, yes, I think Kunizuka looks just like Akane too! You know, if she dyed her hair brown, cut her hair, put in some contacts, completely changed her personality, chopped off her feet to shave off several inches from her height, and had a vocal chord surgery! How amazing is it that great minds think alike?”

    I just about died laughing reading that. That is priceless… what have they been watching??
    Now i feel dumb rofl.. completely read through the japanese site (and struggled like hell too) before realizing as i was reading MAL its theother way around good job me.

    • Haha, glad you liked it. It’s one of the reasons why I make a point of never reading posts in forums unless necessary. It gets my blood pressure up unnecessarily.

      It’s good practice reading the Japanese version though too! I like to see how slang/casual English is translated into Japanese.

      • Funnily enough that would be the exact reason why I read forums, because its funny to see what type of ridiculous comments people manage to come up with, at the same time, while i enjoy laughing at people who pretend to know what they are talking about. It is also fun to be able to come across blogs like yours, where you do know what you are talking about and serious discussions actually exist.

        As for good practice reading the Japanese version, I think not, as I don’t know nearly enough Japanese to read it and in fact I find I end up reading kanji in Chinese instead if I don’t know it (this sometimes works.. other times it comes up to complete gibberish) As so far the only way I’ve been learning Japanese is by staring at the list of 2500 kanji i need to learn, and reading /watch manga/anime.

        • Well, I do understand the ‘train wreck’ value and factor of things. … it’s also why I sometimes read horrible, horrible fanfiction when I’m in the mood, because sometimes, you just can’t beat unadulterated… whatever it is, no matter how hard you try.

          You must like this site then. I’ve wasted a lot of time on there. It’s a lot more enjoyable when they’re not annoying me directly.

          And everyone learns differently, so the list of kanji thing might work for you, I’m not sure, but I find it’s a lot easier to learn gradually in its proper context instead of in lists. And since it sounds like you’re more familiar with Chinese than Japanese, it’s probably less difficult to transition over as well. If you use Firefox, I highly recommend this add-on! It’s very useful, and I use it for unfamiliar vocabulary.

          • Thanks for the add-on recommendation, it is definitely going to be helpful as uh.. I’ve been searching up each and every character i don’t know on my phone’s kanji dictionary.. As for more familiar with Chinese then Japanese, well that doesnt help much actually, all that happens is now I screw up the two languages when reading. Also that list thing does not work, its more or less just a list of words, definition, different ways its said. It’s something i can use to test myself but not really learn from so that add on will definetly help.

    • That’s odd. My prior knowledge of hanzi helped me considerably in picking up kanji when I first started. Or maybe I just have an affinity for Japanese? I don’t know. Though the mixing up languages does happen — mostly orthographically, for me.

      And hm, in that case, studying from the list is more or less equivalent with, for example, trying to learn English by studying the dictionary? I suggest playing/reading visual novels. There are some in every imaginable genre, R18 or not, adventure or fantasy, romance, comedy, drama, or ‘depressing as fuck’, etc. Of course, if you decide to go that route you will have to find one that hasn’t been translated (or at least get the raw version to a translated one) and trudge through it yourself. ITH (Interactive Text Hook) will help ease the ‘looking words up’ thing.

      A screenshot I made from awhile ago explaining what ITH does. Basically, it gives you a version of the text such that you can copy, paste, cut, etc. and do the usual thing with. Instead of having to manually write each character out with a phone app, or looking it up the old-fashioned way (with radicals and number of strokes).

      Note the corresponding text in the VN.

      • Hey great minds think alike! Actually finding VNs that haven’t been translated or need an English patch applied is actually easier then to find ones that are already in English. Alright I’ll try again with ITH.

        And yes, it practically is like learning English via the dictionary. Maybe you do have an affinity for Japanese. Well although knowing a bit of Chinese does help, i find i end up reading it in Chinese in the mix of Japanese I’m reading so it just does a great job of confusing me.. if you get what I mean…

        Thanks for these tips by the way, they are so helpful.

  2. Scathing. Appropriately so. It’s sad this stuff happens (albeit slightly inevitable given any medium) because shows like this, when subject to academic criticism, can help legitimize anime as a broader art form.

    • Oh hey, it’s been awhile.

      And yeah… I would agree that this stuff happens no matter where you go (yay, Sturgeon’s Law). I’m not really sure how I feel about legitimising anime as a broader art form — not because I don’t think it should be, but because people who either think “all anime is cartoon porn” or somehow think animated anything is somehow automatically inferior unless it’s, say, Spirited Away (overrated by the way) are kind of lost causes anyway.

      On the other hand, a lot of anime really isn’t much more than “Hi, this show is going to show you that all women like to have watermelon-sized water balloons taped to their chests that jiggle like Jell-O with the slightest movement, and their sole reason and motivation for existence is to love and adore this conveniently bland protagonist who happens to be an audience surrogate!” And I don’t think those can really help legitimise anime as… well, anything. But might be an interesting way to study the self-entitlement and misogyny of the otaku subculture.

      We really need more good shows around. =\ The jury’s still out on whether Psycho-Pass qualifies as one or not. But at least it’s not one of the latter. Silver linings and all that.

  3. Here’s the preview for episode 13:

    What a shame, no more flashbacks. Maybe after this episode? But it’s unlikely. Funny to see Akane like that, though.

  4. Totally, totally appreciate this post. I actually was looking for Japanese reactions to Psycho Pass since I think most Japanese fans (the mass at least) are a bit like the people who comment on MAL but your comments on the Japanese society make me think I don’t have any need to look further lol.

    • This was so long ago that I don’t even remember writing this. Weird re-reading my own post. But there must be in-depth analyses if you know where to look. I was never too big on finding the forums or places where these discussions happened in Japanese, but from what I remember mostly these thoughts were expressed in individual blogs. Good luck on your search should you decide to pursue it.

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