Fansub Review: [gg] Mawaru Penguindrum (Episode 01)

D-Tier, Fansub Review — By on July 9, 2011 6:37 am

This post was written by Dark_Sage. He is Dark_Sage.

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Enjoy your pseudo-English subs.

File size: 303 MB

Release format: MKV

Japanesiness: Japanese name order. Other than that, none.

Karaoke: No. The OP/ED/Insert weren’t translated.


Typesetting. It varies from okay to not okay.

 God vs. god

All wrong.

Okay, here’s a hard-and-steady rule for when to capitalize “god”.

Capitalize “god” when: you’re using it as a proper name. Think of replacing “god” with “Jehova” or “Jim” and see if it makes sense. That’s it.

Ex: “Jim has spoken to me.” | “God has spoken to me.”

Otherwise, you’re using it in a more general sense, so don’t fucking capitalize it.

Ex: “My god has spoken to me.” | “My Jim has spoken to me.”

Honestly, I shouldn’t have to go over this. This was part of my coursework in elementary school.


Question Marks

All wrong.

Use question marks when you have a question. Don’t use question marks when you don’t.

It’s in the fucking name of the punctuation mark. How do you fuck this up?


Comma Splicing

A comma splice is when you have two sentences that read just fine by themselves, but then you decide to be dick-in-meat-grinder retarded and randomly add a comma between them. Fuck everything about that.

“Put chili oil”? Put it where?

a few months to live. You need the indirect article here.

those who have

Three-liners are forbidden.

Penguins in general? No, they’re talking about the ones in the zoo. Therefore, it’s gotta be “like the penguins are going to”

Capitalization issues. It should be “Mom” and “Uncle Ikebe”



lol’d for a third time. Miso soup; not miso group, guys.

Again, you need the indirect article “A”. Also, this is a comma splice.

The tenses are super fucked-up here.

This doesn’t really seem like a nickname people would have.

Not “the fate”. Try “his fate”.

If you’re going to continue from a comma, you better have your next line in lowercase.


Overall grade: D-

gg is not a good group. How many times must I repeat this for people to understand? Avoid this release if you can.

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Dark_Sage says:

Forgive any errors in this post (if there are any). After this comment, I am literally just going to drop in my bed and fall asleep. Super tired.

Nyara♥ says:

I don’t see any important error, don’t worry. And thanks for the review.

Pilot-kun says:

Nothing like dropping onto your bed after a hard day of work.

Zenia says:

Thank god for Nutbladder doing it as well, but do hope it is better, if ever so slightly.

Hoping someone does Baka besides them as well, so the only anime to suffer is Sacred Seven, unless that joint group is better. Haven’t checked them out yet.

Nyara♥ says:

Nutbladder… *sigh*, no hope… (?)

Sacred Seven have better spanish subs than english subs, lol, it’s pretty sad for the english scene.

Actar says:

I’m pretty nitpicky about localizing, so hopefully someone other than gg and Nutbladder subs this series.

Talking about Baka Test, FFFpeeps localizes as well if I’m not mistaken…

Best sub groups in my opinion have the best English and still respect the cultural content of the source material. Not many

corocoro says:

FFFpeeps are doing BakaTest2 as well. You’ll be in good hands with them. ;)

Actar says:

Hm… Just watched their release and I have to say that while their subs are understandable, they are far from perfect. Pretty liberal and loose translations in certain parts.

One obvious example would be that they translated “nude model from an erotic magazine” as “porn star”. Similar, but not quite the same. There are many instances of this throughout the show that was kind of annoying for me as I’m learning the language.

Honorifics were also left out and ムッツリーニ was translated as Voyeur. Coming from the term むっつり, something along the lines of Silent Pervert or Morose Pervert would have been more appropriate.

kyonyUU says:

Right, because a “nude model from an erotic magazine” isn’t a porn star. Perhaps she’s just…a porn star…

The muttsuriini thing is totally voyeur. Even borderline NTR-style.

Also, either L2english or watch it raw. Watching subs when you know japanese and want half the script in romaji is like using a condom on a safe day.

convexity says:

In my raw translation for that line, I had “a nude model in a porn mag,” which the editor later changed to “a porn star.” It’s a choice in editing, but it’s not really localizing. <.<

Terms like Voyeur were kept consistent with gg's subtitles of the first season.

In my opinion, this show works fine with no honorifics in subtitles.

Actar says:

Considering gg did a pretty trollish job for the first season, I wouldn’t say that being consistent with them is a good thing…

As for the honorifics and ‘editing’, I’m just stating my own personal opinion and tastes. Nothing more. I just prefer subtitles to be more literal. Like how ‘grit your teeth’ in the beginning was translated as ‘brace yourself’.

BleKohl says:

Indefinite article. Not “indirect”.

mond says:

F as in fabulous.

Klownzie says:

It’s a matter of speed over quality. That’s why HS gets so many downloads and that’s why GG will keep on getting lots of downloads too.

We all prefer groups with good english, but unless the sentences stop making sense, people are gonna stick with the mediocre-but-fast groups.

corocoro says:

I could name some counterexamples where people stick with groups that don’t make sense (Ayako and SubDESU come to mind), or expand to one recent release by a certain large group where I didn’t understand what they were going on about, because the TL/editing were unclear (even though there weren’t many English errors).

You get around 1/3 with speed, 2/3 by simply being around for more than two years and/or releasing plenty of series.
Quality brings you only around 10%, as sad as it is. Unless a known group already brings good quality, in which case you get even less, no matter if you’re better.
(You end up with 110% due to fanboys watching things just because their favorite group is working on it).

8thSin says:

I knew we deserved it for ‘KamiMemo’, but “F” is a bit too harsh this time.

I watched Nutbladder subs already. There is no way theirs are better substitute for this series simply because they left out too much untranslated or made up, and IMO seemed even sloppier than ours.

Dark_Sage says:

I did have it as D- before my eyes started spinning and I was literally bobbing my head into and away from my monitor. (I really wanted to get a post in for the day before I fainted.)

I guess a good translation counts for a lot and you’re certainly a very good translator. But at the same time, so does good English, and the English was certainly very bad. In the end, the mediocre typesetting and the lack of an ED/OP/Insert (Yes, I know that avoiding the OP/ED/Insert was a quality assurance concern) provided little means to raise this score above where it sits with the English.

I can concede that perhaps while this failed in my eyes, a D- is a more legitimate indicator of its relative status compared to other, recent releases which I have given an F to.

tl;dr you argued your way up. o/

ObsidianTK says:

If you want an honest opinion, it looks to me like your editor is really phoning it in. Every single one of these errors is something that a skilled editor should catch, and it’s their job to do so.

As an English major and someone who’s edited both anime fansubs and manga scanlations, I can tell you that I don’t give a shit if the translator doesn’t have perfect English — it’s not your job to catch comma splices and missed apostrophes and awkward phrasing, it’s mine. If translators had perfect English, what would be left for us to do?

Tell your editor to do more than 10 minutes and an F7 on the script.

kyonyUU says:

>English major

Is that why you have the free time to do fansubs?

kyonyUU says:

Bro, quit gg and stay on UTW.

Chiki says:

the show was horrible to begin with.

Zenia says:

Looked at Nutbladder’s version of this show, and it really is horrid. Even though gg didn’t do Karaoke, they at least did the typesetting correctly. Possibly more english errors as well.

random says:

Just a thought out there. Wouldn’t it be better if you did a quick review on each release and gave us a prespective on which fansub to go for each series? You can always give some simple example but not so many. and even do in depth review on the side. personally I’m looking for the best fansub for series not what mistakes they made. I have my trust in your to make a wise decision at least 90% of the time if not 100%.

8thSin says:

I’ve been reviewing these screen caps for possible v2 changes…

Some of the capitalization errors are legit, others were poorly phrased for intended “God”. I should be careful next time, but it’s kind of hard paying that much attention for speedsub.

As for question marks, the first one was clearly a rhetorical question screamed out. I didn’t think it was necessary to add a question mark. Poor wording for doctor scene (it wasn’t supposed to be a question) :(

Comma splicing: You will probably have to get used to these. I seriously don’t want the subs to be filled with semicolons, and those lines can’t be separated into 2 lines because they would either 1) lose accuracy in nuance 2)lose readability from blinking subs.
It’s an acceptable compromise for more natural sounding spoken English IMO, because spoken Japanese is translated. “Comma splices are also acceptable in passages of spoken (or interior) dialogue, and are sometimes used deliberately to emulate spoken language more closely.” (sorry, used Wikipedia as source out of laziness)

Also, I’m not certain if those comma splices can be legitimately be called errors. (random source –

I guess that’s why you say “gg is not a good group”, but it’s a matter of preference :p

“lol’d for a third time. Miso soup; not miso group, guys.”

Others seem legit though. I’ll try to fix those. Thanks.

Dark_Sage says:

I don’t rate comma splices very highly on the list of egregious offenses. If all you got from this review was “Wow, there are some comma splices, but everything else is FANTASTIC”, I fucked up somewhere.

Rhetorical questions still warrant questions marks; I don’t care if Yahoo Answers disagrees.

No. *All* of the capitalization errors were legit. If you want to argue that you have a word properly capitalized in any one of those screens, I’d be happy to teach you English for a bit.

For your “Wut?”, you guys misspelled Miso Soup as Miso Group.

8thSin says:

“No. *All* of the capitalization errors were legit.”
I meant those were TL errors. But yeah, they were all errors.

And wtf, I thought you meant those were capitalization errors again.
Someone’s trolling me, because it was definitely “soup” when I finished translating =_=

8thSin says:

nm, it was just a typo, and there was only one instance.

Kamion says:

I prefer bad editing over bad translation, really. And some of Nutbladder’s translations were just… strange.

Then again I don’t really read subs that much – I just use them as a substitute for words/phrases I do not quite understand. Which is why I prefer correct translations.

Xythar says:

“gg is not a good group. How many times must I repeat this for people to understand?” is a pretty pointless thing to say because a pretty wide variety of people work for gg and the staff lineup usually differs from show to show. At the very least as a group they don’t sprinkle honourifics and various other untranslated crap all over the subs which automatically puts them ahead of most other sub groups for me, grammatical errors or no.

That being said, from the comments on this and the Nutbladder review it’s pretty evident that you are sorely in need of someone to review the actual translation accuracy for you, otherwise this is basically just Dark_Sage’s Fansub Editor Review Blog. Anyone can notice things like “miso group” but actual translation errors are much harder to pick up on if you’re not too familiar with the language, and that’s the kind of thing I’d be much more interested in reading about.

Dark_Sage says:

Well, yes. I think this site would shine if I had fansubbing pros in various areas giving their input. Ideally, I’d have a translator and an aesthetist (to rate the kara/styling/encoding/etc.) each giving their professional opinions on the subjects with which they are most familiar.

Unfortunately, translators of the quality I’d need are in short supply. I’m not sure I could convince someone to match my pace on these reviews, and translations are much less clear-cut than editing is.

As it stands, I still feel my reviews provide a valuable service, though I’d understand if you didn’t feel that way.

tl;dr: I’d love to add a Translation Accuracy section, but I don’t think it’s going to happen unless I get a staff the size of Doki’s, and in that case, why wouldn’t I just create a massive fansubbing conglomerate instead?

Mosh says:

Hey Dark, been regularly checking your site for updates on which fansub to go with my animes. You are the only person I can find that thoroughly goes through each release and lays it all out for clueless people like myself who usually just download “xyz” release just because they are popular. I pretty much download releases from fansubbers you recommend and I wanna thank you for the service you provide as it greatly improves my anime-viewing! Thank you again and keep it up please.

Dark_Sage says:

Geez. I was just about to take a nap too. Way to guilt trip me into staying up. :P

Appreciate the support. I’ll have some more stuff up for ya today~

corocoro says:

> As it stands, I still feel my reviews provide a valuable service, though I’d understand if you didn’t feel that way.

I use them to find out where I have to improve and for amusement – less for my choices in subbing groups. ;)
Certainly a valuable service for (nearly) all editors and QCs out there. :D

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