Translating "The Secret of Atom's Birth" short film

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Kitty Lue
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Translating "The Secret of Atom's Birth" short film

Postby Kitty Lue » 2 years ago

So for several months, off and on, I've been working on translating this short film, occasionally getting help from my dad, who knows some Japanese but hasn't used it much since probably 1985 when he came back to the U.S. after about a year and a half in Japan. Anyway, I went into this with very little knowledge of the Japanese language and actually learned quite a bit along the way (more than doubled my Japanese vocabulary doing this, though I'm not sure how useful something like "DNA bunseki" would be in regular conversation :lol :) and I'm understanding a bit more each time I listen.
However, there are still several cases when, even after identifying the right sounds in the dialogue, the actual meaning remains elusive.
One case is this phrase I've heard both Tobio and Tenma repeat on a few occasions in the short film; "doko made mo." According to Google Translate, it just means "wherever", but that's kind of fragmented for a phrase that's repeated, and I'm hesitant to trust an automatic translator, especially with anything other than individual words.
Another case is the word "dagu" that I've heard used several times, but it doesn't seem to have an actual translation. Yesterday a Japanese foreign exchange student at my school even listened to a portion of the dialogue and wrote it down for me, and she didn't recognize the word "dagu" when she heard it. My dad and I think it might be an odd pronunciation of "doguu" (a clay figure) used in a metaphorical sense to refer to Atom's robotic body, especially since at one point Tenma says something about using "dagu" to resurrect Tobio, but that's just a guess on the meaning of "dagu". :unsure:
Any ideas? Also, if anyone else has been translating this, I'd love to compare notes. :)
Last edited by Kitty Lue on Wed Mar 08, 2017 7:08 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: fixed some romaji

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Postby Tetsuwan Penguin » 2 years ago

I'd love to get a file that could be 'attached' to the mp4 of the video to subtitle it. Also the film where Atom is found in a museum by a boy being chased by robots (the robots chasing the boy, and Ochanomizu's submarine reminds me of the movie, "the matrix" btw).

BTW I'm also desperate to get a translation of episode 171 ("Kutcher forever") from the 1963 series (one of the 'missing' episodes that is ONLY available in Japanese. I have an AVI file of this one.)
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Kitty Lue
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Postby Kitty Lue » 2 years ago

I could certainly make a subtitle file of the translation when I've got enough of it done. I could paste the subtitle code here like I did with the subs for the ATB trailer, or find a way to link the actual file. :)
As for that short film where Atom is found in a museum, I just wish I could find the full version. :( I do know that in the 3-minute clip that Tezuka Productions uploaded to YT, there's a little sign on Atom's case that's a bit hard to read, but is in English, and the boy basically reads it in Japanese, so that sign is a little piece of translation.
And I think I remember reading a thread where you mentioned ep. 171, I haven't seen it yet but the little bit you mentioned has me intrigued, I can see why you're desparate for a translation. I'd be interested in at least attempting a translation for that one as well. I should mention, though, that my knowledge of Japanese is still quite limited, so I make very slow progress with translating. (At least my vocabulary's pretty much tailor-made for translating Astro Boy, though, since that's where I learned most of it. :lol :)

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Postby Juanita » 2 years ago

I know this is asking a lot so I'm not asking of you specifically, but we really need to get a project going to retranslate the 2003 series cuz after episode 24 the subs become awful. Whoever translated couldn't even get the names right... Not sure if this is because I'm not watching it legally :whistling: or what, but if I'm correct there's no official subtitles right? Maybe I can study Japanese and attempt to fix some of it though I have no idea how to make subtitled videos, and that definitely wouldn't happen for at least a year and a half (3 semesters of Japanese in school).

Besides that I think it's great you're subbing this one. All we need is for someone to put the subs on the video and it's perfect! Though they'd have to link it somewhere else obviously...

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Kitty Lue
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Postby Kitty Lue » 2 years ago

"Juanita" wrote:I know this is asking a lot so I'm not asking of you specifically, but we really need to get a project going to retranslate the 2003 series cuz after episode 24 the subs become awful. Whoever translated couldn't even get the names right... Not sure if this is because I'm not watching it legally :whistling: or what, but if I'm correct there's no official subtitles right? Maybe I can study Japanese and attempt to fix some of it though I have no idea how to make subtitled videos, and that definitely wouldn't happen for at least a year and a half (3 semesters of Japanese in school).

Besides that I think it's great you're subbing this one. All we need is for someone to put the subs on the video and it's perfect! Though they'd have to link it somewhere else obviously...


Oh yes, I've definitely had this on my mind as well. And unfortunately, it's true that there's no official subtitled version of the '03 series. But I do actually have the unedited Japanese episodes with softsubs (meaning the subtitles are stored in a separate file and therefore can be edited without actually messing with the video file). I've been opening the subtitle files in Notepad and doing a few quick changes (i.e. using the "find" tool to automatically replace all occurrences of "Wulan" with "Uran", stuff like that) as well as making a few logical corrections. But between school, the other translation, and just life in general, I haven't had much time for doing an actual overhaul on those translations. :(
However, there is a thread already on the forum about fixing the '03 subs. If you're interested in helping out I could probably paste the contents of a subtitle file into a spoiler there for you to copy and start editing. I can answer probably any questions you have about editing subtitle files (it doesn't require any special programs and it's actually quite simple, it just sounds a bit intimidating. :lol :) . I'm seeing a pattern on when you tend to post, so I could try to be online around that time so we can discuss some things back and forth without waiting until the next day to get responses. :)
Also, I actually haven't taken any classes in Japanese, just Spanish. :lol: I'm sure any contribution you can make would be appreciated, and if you've got any questions about translations, I'm sure there are several people on here who'd be more than happy to help. :)

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Postby Juanita » 2 years ago

However, there is a thread already on the forum about fixing the '03 subs. If you're interested in helping out I could probably paste the contents of a subtitle file into a spoiler there for you to copy and start editing. I can answer probably any questions you have about editing subtitle files (it doesn't require any special programs and it's actually quite simple, it just sounds a bit intimidating. :lol :) . I'm seeing a pattern on when you tend to post, so I could try to be online around that time so we can discuss some things back and forth without waiting until the next day to get responses. :)
Also, I actually haven't taken any classes in Japanese, just Spanish. :lol: I'm sure any contribution you can make would be appreciated, and if you've got any questions about translations, I'm sure there are several people on here who'd be more than happy to help. :)


Ah ok! I'd be willing to give it a shot. I'd like a link to that thread if you can find it.
You can send me a PM for the file and stuff so we can talk more in detail about the subtitles and how to change them and stuff. But yeah I'm totally willing to at least decipher what the original subs are supposed to mean cuz it's truly tragic.

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Kitty Lue
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Postby Kitty Lue » 2 years ago

"Juanita" wrote:Ah ok! I'd be willing to give it a shot. I'd like a link to that thread if you can find it.
You can send me a PM for the file and stuff so we can talk more in detail about the subtitles and how to change them and stuff. But yeah I'm totally willing to at least decipher what the original subs are supposed to mean cuz it's truly tragic.

Alright! Wasn't too hard for me to find since I had bumped it not too long ago. :lol:
http://www.astroboy-online.com/forums/showthread.php?t=9397
I'll send you a PM with a subtitle file when I get on my PC. If you see this before then, do you have any particular episode in mind to start out with?

And yes, there's definitely something going on there that's a bit obstructed by the broken translations. A prime example: "If I may tear, I'm sure to cry." The wording is so awkward, but you can just tell it's supposed to mean something like "If I could shed tears, surely I would cry," not "Don't make it too sappy!" :cry:
Also the HK subs have a tendancy to give everyone a bit of strong language from time to time, like in the finale when Tobio and Atom say "shidoi!" (if I remember correctly), which means something like "Terrible!" and instead the HK subs make them curse. :lol:

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Juanita
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Postby Juanita » 2 years ago

If you see this before then, do you have any particular episode in mind to start out with?


Well I mean I guess episode 25 would be appropriate since that's where it starts crashing and burning. I could just proofread whatever you have and use what little resources I have to make small corrections and reword sentences. The one line where he calls energy sauce caught me way off guard. Kinda feel like that'd be funny to leave in (I wouldn't tho :p )

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Kitty Lue
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Postby Kitty Lue » 2 years ago

"Juanita" wrote:Well I mean I guess episode 25 would be appropriate since that's where it starts crashing and burning.

Haha I like that wording, "crashing and burning" :lol: Alright, I'll send you a PM with those subs. In fact, I had started correcting that episode's subs, I just didn't get very far yet.

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Juanita
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Postby Juanita » 2 years ago

Lol sounds good.


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