Translation Review: [HorribleSubs] Charlotte – 01

This post was written by kokujin-kun. He is not Dark_Sage.

Checking in from the Boogie Down to see how the fansub scene utterly deteriorated during my absence

Table of Contents

Release Information


Other Observations

Final Grade

Release Information

Episode details.

Release format: MKV ( 327MB, 8-bit)

Translation: Professional TL

Wap Level: None, absent instances I’m pretty sure are unintentional

English style: American English.

Speed: Quick (<48 hours)


External links.

Group website: Aniplex, Daisuki, Crunchyroll, Horriblesubs

IRC channel: #[email protected]

Like I said before, I will be labeling observations as “nitpicks” or “errors” in order to mitigate confusion.


Main Script.

[HorribleSubs] Charlotte - 01 [720p].mkv_snapshot_02.01_[2015.07.11_17.54.23]


Maybe that “guy” with the glowy eyes is a cross dresser.

[HorribleSubs] Charlotte - 01 [720p].mkv_snapshot_02.10_[2015.07.11_17.55.02]


Just “finals,” the term kimatsu is used for the end of a school term—any term.


[HorribleSubs] Charlotte - 01 [720p].mkv_snapshot_02.43_[2015.07.11_17.56.30]


Nice leaving the waseigo as is. Try “investigate” or “looked into it”.

[HorribleSubs] Charlotte - 01 [720p].mkv_snapshot_02.44_[2015.07.11_17.56.49][HorribleSubs] Charlotte - 01 [720p].mkv_snapshot_02.54_[2015.07.11_17.57.47]


Didn’t bother translating the name of the school, even though it will figure very prominently into the story later. In the past I counted not translating signs as errors, and this was just a cunthair away from being a full error. They got a pass since I suppose people paying for these subs probably wouldn’t want their screen cluttered up with the name of the school.

[HorribleSubs] Charlotte - 01 [720p].mkv_snapshot_02.46_[2015.07.11_17.57.16]


Miss the part where he was talking about “smart kids” vying to get into that super-elite prep school. And yes, that’s important since what’s the point of possessing random test takers?

[HorribleSubs] Charlotte - 01 [720p].mkv_snapshot_03.00_[2015.07.11_17.58.12]


Hai, as this site cannot stress enough, translating that word this way is very grating.

[HorribleSubs] Charlotte - 01 [720p].mkv_snapshot_03.32_[2015.07.11_18.01.52]


So these people go through all that… trouble, I guess (?) to Westernize the script, but here the concept of “second-person pronouns” went over their heads.

[HorribleSubs] Charlotte - 01 [720p].mkv_snapshot_04.11_[2015.07.11_18.04.15]


Nope, there was only one girl.

[HorribleSubs] Charlotte - 01 [720p].mkv_snapshot_08.02_[2015.07.11_18.15.55]


This is probably the funniest/stupidest/most rage-inducing mistake of the whole release.

[HorribleSubs] Charlotte - 01 [720p].mkv_snapshot_09.37_[2015.07.11_18.19.12]


I was tempted to treat this as just another editing derp, but I just want to make this clear as possible. When you hear you da that means “apparently.” When you hear sou da that usually means “somebody said.” So a better line would be “I was told you’ll be expelled if you try to get out of it.”

[HorribleSubs] Charlotte - 01 [720p].mkv_snapshot_11.04_[2015.07.11_18.22.43]


“This says you don’t have that disease.”

[HorribleSubs] Charlotte - 01 [720p].mkv_snapshot_13.39_[2015.07.11_18.29.44]


Okay, let’s pull out the old dictionary… fukanzen... “incomplete”… nouryoku… “ability.” Okay, script’s done, where’s my $80?

[HorribleSubs] Charlotte - 01 [720p].mkv_snapshot_14.12_[2015.07.11_18.32.40]


Yes, “hanashi” can mean “story,” but it doesn’t apply to every goddamn situation. If it were me, I’d have him say “You can’t be…” and have the girl say “We’re serious.”

[HorribleSubs] Charlotte - 01 [720p].mkv_snapshot_19.23_[2015.07.11_18.57.35]


It sounds like he caused those things, but it supposed to be “It’s a long story… I’m sorry.”

[HorribleSubs] Charlotte - 01 [720p].mkv_snapshot_23.17_[2015.07.11_19.04.20][HorribleSubs] Charlotte - 01 [720p].mkv_snapshot_23.20_[2015.07.11_19.04.55]


If you’re going for a joke, it’d be better to conflate the word “sisCON” with “CONtest,” geddit?

[HorribleSubs] Charlotte - 01 [720p].mkv_snapshot_23.21_[2015.07.11_19.05.56]


They do a TL note for the previous line, but not for this? (TL note: Hoshinoumi = Sea of Stars)



Other Observations

I’m sure you’ve all noticed by now, but the script reads pretty shitty and unedited. But that detailed necropsy is something for another post by people more capable than me. For now I’ll just focus on a couple of the more ridiculous lines.

[HorribleSubs] Charlotte - 01 [720p].mkv_snapshot_14.09_[2015.07.11_18.32.03]

Too bad there isn’t a way to reverse search for a common term that specifically means “someone with parental authority over a child.” It might help these overly literal professional subbers a lot.

[HorribleSubs] Charlotte - 01 [720p].mkv_snapshot_14.25_[2015.07.11_18.34.30][HorribleSubs] Charlotte - 01 [720p].mkv_snapshot_14.27_[2015.07.11_18.34.44]

Subbers thinking “conversational language” would have cut to the fucking chase and had her say, “Oh, but you were able to get close to that girl you liked.” Seriously, in order give viewers time to read the second line, they extended it double the length of the actual audio, so at least they were aware the line was too goddamn long.

Final Grade: C-

Too many stupid, avoidable mistakes that could have been fixed if the translator just watched this useless chuuni haremshit anime one time though. And they were tacked on to a shitty script that’s obviously an unedited first draft.

I wish I could just leave it at that, but it appears that the good people at Aniplex/Daisuki aren’t content with just being a substandard subtitling company and have decided to play dirty. As you all probably know, MyAnimeList has finally made the switch from a being merely a rubber room full of shitass casuals to being a bought-and-sold corporate shill. You will also notice that the fansub ratings have mysteriously disappeared from some of the anime pages. Starting to see a pattern?

I certainly did because Daisuki/Horriblesubs used to get hammered in those fansub ratings. Their rating for Charlotte in particular was really bad; it even included a detailed analysis of what was wrong with the script by an anon (wish I still had the link). So instead of actually investing in an editor, Daisuki has decided to do away with all the criticisms. That is what the professional anime streaming scene has come to.

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86 thoughts on “Translation Review: [HorribleSubs] Charlotte – 01”

  1. >So instead of actually investing in an editor, Daisuki has decided to do away with all the criticisms. That is what the professional anime streaming scene has come to.

    Kinda wrong here. MAL is most likely going to be removing that feature entirely. It was in works of being removed back with the old owners as well. But yes, Daisuki basically streaming within MAL now has made the push even faster for their own shows.

    • It’s spam protection. You shouldn’t need a Crymore account unless you plan to be writing here, so if you just want avatar functionality, I suggest using Gravatar going forward.

      • I thought having an account let you skip the approval thing. Test.

        Edit: Guess you don’t need an account for that.

            • The system is… weird. Even if someone’s commented a bunch before, certain things will trigger it. I do try to go through the spam folder and save the legit comments, but it’s such a chore that I usually only get to it once a week unless someone asks me to poke around there earlier.

              I’ll try and take a peek at it tonight, but if I’m too tired I’ll leave it till Friday in the AM.

    • Tip: When asking the question “What should X be translated as?”

      The answer is always “It depends on context.”

        • In general, think of “hai” as not having any specific one-to-one translation, but rather being “indicative of some level of agreement” with the level determined by context, tone, sound emphasis etc. Then figure out what a normal English speaker would say. In an action-response context, “Hai!” in a fast enthusiastic tone might be something along the lines of “you bet!”/”got it!”/”on it!” or whatever, a normal “hai” could be “alright”/”sure”/”sure thing”, a more reluctant drawn out descending “heeyyy” would be more equivalent to “yeah yeah”/”fiiinne” (if it’s some tween). In a mere agreement context it could be anything we’d use (reflecting the question, formality of the relationship etc). And so on and so forth.

          There are many, many ways English speakers indicate they’re agreeing with something or agreeing to take action depending on formality and level of enthusiasm. Effectively none of them are ever a plain “Yes.” This shouldn’t be hard for any native speaker that engages their brain a bit and imagines what an actual human being in that situation would say.

  2. >You will also notice that the fansub ratings have mysteriously disappeared from some of the anime pages. Starting to see a pattern?
    I prefer to get my conspiracy bullshit theories from Kristen himself.

        • So… what, fansub ratings for series other than the ones their buyout parent is affiliated with are AOK? How does that work? The ratings undermine themselves so they’re gone, but the ratings that undermine their competitors can stay?

          I’m not sure that’s legally defensible, let alone ethically defensible.

          • It’s kind of similar to sites like YouTube. Not all copyrighted videos are removed, unless the legitimate copyright holders take them down (or the automated system flags them).

            Same applies here. The partners are only concerned about their own contents. They don’t care what happens for series they are not related to.

            • Yeah, but Youtube is removing videos that infringe copyright (aka videos that may be illegal). MAL is removing reviews that don’t infringe copyright and evaluate the quality of a work (aka profit-driven censorship).

              • Is it, though? I thought they were removing them because they allowed users to easily reach the groups’ websites. By clicking on a groups’s name, you are brought to a page with more details, URLs to their sites, etc.

                • Then separate the the database from the review end of it. I mean, it’s not like you can’t still search for that information on MAL, so if your primary concern is that it’s too easy for people to find links that promote piracy or whatever, but the actual group reviews are okay, then unlinking the group names ought to work as a compromise.

                  Of course, unless they’re all stupid over there (which I won’t rule out) I’m sure someone already suggested this and got shot down by higher-ups who want All the Money™ and can’t stomach the thought of fansubs even having a chance of being promoted over their own garbage on their new advertising platform.

                  • I can be swayed by the argument that Aniplex doesn’t want the website they just bought to advertise illegal competition.

                    But does it appear that they’ll let fans review officialsubs?

              • The “fansub reviews” only serve to give the masses a quick link to illegal content. Removing that isn’t fucking censorship.

              • “Censorship”

                It’s not really. MAL don’t have to provide a platform for its users to ‘review’ fansubs in that way and all it means is they’ll get rid of that functionality. If Aniplex/Daisuki have bought out MAL, why on earth would they ever keep something that highlights and (in a sense) legitimises fansubbing? Especially with how fansubbing is viewed in Japan.

                My guess is they’ll slowly phase out the fansub elements of the site, not too dissimilar to the way other sites have in the past after becoming financially linked with a studio or licensor. And I think they’ll do that precisely because people will call them out for only doing it on their titles, so instead of adding their titles back in, they’ll just cull the lot. Saves them hassle that way, right?

              • Censorship by private individuals or corporations is a fiction. It doesn’t exist. There is no right to freedom of expression on private or corporate venues. Constitutional rights are protective rights against government interference, and, in some European traditions, guarantees of government service.

                A private individual or corporation can apply arbitrary, meaningless and completely random rules to content on its venue. Constitutions do not bind private individuals.

                Whether you like it or not, MAL can do whatever they want and remove whatever they feel like removing.

                • Generally in today’s society surgically censoring stuff to protect specifically your profits is considered a dick move, and it’s still censorship, regardless of whether it’s constitutionally protected or not. There may (?) also be legal ramifications if it can be shown that they clearly understood the deleterious effects of piracy links but specifically only removed the ones that pertained to their product, leaving the ones that pertained to competitors’ product alone.

                  • Nothing is preventing you from soapboxing elsewhere. Having house rules regarding content, regardless of how warped they are, is not censorship. Censorship is the suppression of public expression. A website is usually the responsibility of some kind of non-governmental party. The government shutting down websites is potentially an infringement on freedom of speech, but not a website shutting down content. Unless the censoring entity can believably prevent you from publishing your opinion at all, it isn’t censorship.

                    Censorship by corporations or on corporate venues doesn’t exist. It’s not how the word is defined, how constitutional rights work, or how governance works.

                    You can feel it is morally reprehensible to cull unloved content, but it is factually incorrect to liken it to censorship.

                    The only way to escape this conundrum is by using a very modern, internet definition of censorship which boils down to removing access to specific content without consideration of other platforms where the same individual might have no trouble making his opinion available to the general public. If you call this censorship as well, then the definition of censorship becomes disconnected from freedom of expression and vice versa.

                    • I think you’re operating on a very narrow definition of censorship as it applies to constitutional freedom of speech. Your notion that there is only freedom-of-speech-infringing censorship and “modern internet” censorship, and all other uses of the word are misnomers, is misguided.

                    • If you come into my home and start to insult me and my family, I’ll tell you to shut it and leave.
                      No one would consider that censorship.

                      What’s happening on MAL is the same, only on a corporate level and with a profit motive (or ‘corporate greed’ if you prefer) behind it. It is an understandable move, no matter how unpopular and/or harmful it may be to the site/community in the long run.
                      It’s not censorship, though.


            • Here’s the thing about the legality of MAL. Their action could potentially fall under the umbrella of “facilitating criminal activity”. However, the current US law is that to facilitate criminal activity, you need to process a financial transaction that makes the criminal activity easy or less difficult.
              For instance, if I were to sell you a bong with the intention of you using it to smoke pot, that is illegal (ignoring the legal status of pot in the US).
              As MAL did not actually sell anything, it is not considered to be facilitating. Further, using its services did not make engaging in illegal activity any easier. You got a list of fansub groups working on a show. Great. You also can buy drugs from the Sinaloa Cartel in Mexico. My saying that doesn’t make it any easier for you to get drugs from them.

              The reason why they are taking it down is a conflict of interest. When entering into an agreement with a company, they can make demands as they please. The company can accept them, or reject them and risk losing the agreement. For instance, coke can demand that a stadium remove all pepsi references. The stadium isn’t bound to do it, but they will do it or coke will remove their deal.

              And in the end, the all mighty dollar will win again.

                • Depends on how you take the comments. If you’re a group that looks at it and are like “LOL THEY HAET US FOR OUR M3MES!”, yeah, it’s useless. But if you’re a group that actively compares approval ratings between your releases to see what you did a better job on and a worse job on, as well as sifts through comments to find pointers on stuff you can do better (for instance, mentions of block typesetting in Bakemonogatari), it did hold value.

                  Personally I hope that there is another website that comes along for fans to review fansub releases without being subjected to having their comments deleted for disagreeing with the moderators. Or if not that, people start using anidb again. There is value in all these sites for those who know how to use them.

                  • Except the fansubbing section in MAL was absolutely fucking FILLED to the brim with trolling, fanboys, and “I’m totally qualified to comment on TL despite not knowing a lick of Japanese”. I mean, reading any Commie/Vivid/”cartel” entry was just a complete fuckfest of “filled with memes”, “piece of shit fanfiction”, “memes”, “Eotens” and did I mention “memes”? And meanwhile other groups would have “ESL-tier subs”, “enjoy your engrish” and so on.

                    Like, I get that there might be legit feedback in there, but as even you say, sifting through comments isn’t my idea of finding useful advice. 90% of MAL users have no idea what they’re talking about.

                    That said, I’m not supporting the change- it’s clearly got some pretty dumb motives behind it, but the fansub section was hardly a useful resource for determining fansub quality.

                    • Yes, you’re right. The numbers do not matter, as they are mainly just a measure of fanboys vs. haters. Nor do number comparisons matter between groups. Look at Kamisama no Memo-chou, for instance, where Chihiro got an A here and UTW got a C, yet on MAL UTW has about a 95% approval rating and Chihiro has about a 66% approval rating on that show.

                      What does matter are comparisons between approval ratings within the same group, as well as the individual comments. For instance, look at Vivid. Their Hanayamata subs are 84% approved, and most of the negative comments are about their relation to Commie. In other words, they did well. Yet the following season, their Amagami Brilliant Park is only at 78% and the comments are talking about it using memes, being a fanfic, and calling it a trollsub.
                      Why would the same people turn in such a short time from calling their subs generally good to saying memesubs? Someone with an open mind would think “hm, maybe I’m localizing a bit too much causing people to confuse it with memes.” Someone with a closed mind would think “lol, what memes? MAL is stupid.”

                    • >Someone with an open mind would think “hm, maybe I’m localizing a bit too much causing people to confuse it with memes.” Someone with a closed mind would think “lol, what memes? MAL is stupid.”
                      And someone who thinks he’s a girl despite his penis would think “time to start talking out my ass about localization”

                    • You seem to be suggesting here that most of the MAL comments (and anidb ones before it) *don’t* come from other fansubbers trolling… ^_~

                    • Do you have a problem with trans people, anon? Why should Kristen have to identify as the gender she was assigned at birth? Xythar may be too close-minded and conservative to accept Kristen’s gender, and has slandered her for it, but there’s no need to follow his example. His lack of compassion and inability to recognize people’s freedom and entitlement to certain rights is evident. I feel sorry for people who think like him, who feel that trans people don’t have the right to speak their mind without being attacked personally for something they have no control over. I bet he hates gays and women, too.

                    • >Xythar

                      No, but seriously, where did you actually get that impression of Xythar?

                    • Well, he incessantly insults and belittles Kristen about her gender identity, which proves he’s transphobic. People like that are generally close-minded hicks.

                    • Uh, I don’t know if Xythar actually did that before, but recently at least, he’s bashed Kristen for being an asshole toward him and his peers, not for identifying as female. He’s referred to Kristen as a female individual, and the kind of people he follows on Twitter and the kinds of values he expresses on Twitter give the impression that he’s very liberal (or as fuckfaces on Reddit will say, “SJW”). I can’t really see the transphobia you’re claiming he has, and I certainly wouldn’t believe that he’d suddenly change from leaning far right to leaning far left that quickly.

                    • Xythar has indeed in the past belittled me about my gender identity. However, he has also recently apologized to me about belittling me about it in the past, and I have forgiven him about it. And to be perfectly honest, I think he is the only person who hates me as a person, but still respects me enough to call me “she” like I prefer. I can respect him, even if I don’t agree with him on many things.

                      The unfortunate thing is that pretty much anything I post here gets turned into this. It’s the fallback for people who don’t have anything real to put up to me for facts and analysis they cannot argue against. It just takes one idiot to turn an adult-like discussion into the prattling of kids.

                    • Ah, I see. I hadn’t really lurked that much in the fansub scene back then, so I wasn’t aware that he was like that before. But yeah, I like the way he is now, and I am glad that you two discussed about that problem.

                      That being said, this blog does seem to have a tendency to attract the worst kind of people, so I’m not really sure if it’s actually worthwhile to post here…

                    • @Hairy
                      >Why should Kristen have to identify as the gender she was assigned at birth?
                      He can identify as a dinosaur for all I care just don’t expect me to validate his mental illness

                      >feel sorry for people who think like him, who feel that trans people don’t have the right to speak their mind without being attacked personally for something they have no control over.
                      If you actually read my comments you’ll find in the part that you ignored that I’m actually criticizing him for talking out of his ass. I just throw the trannie insult there because it’s cute and morons like you and Kristen can just focus on that.

                      >I bet he hates gays and women, too.
                      Well, I’m gay and no longer a teenager so no I don’t hate myself.

    • You don’t need a conspiracy theory for a fact. Everyone in the fansubbing scene – sites, users, etc – will bow down to the almighty dollar if it is presented to them.

    • BTW, I’m not saying that I’m above and beyond this either. If someone were to approach me and be like “Here’s $1000. Never fansub again,” I’d certainly take it.

      • I would gladly give you $1K for you to stop but I can’t trust someone who can’t even make up his mind when it comes to his own gender

        • You try but you fail so hard. I know I’m a girl. “Unable to make up my mind” means that I flip flop on the issue. I’ve never stated anything other than I want to be a girl.

          Regardless, if you’re not willing to, then you obviously don’t want me to leave that much.

          • To be fair, “I know I’m a girl.” and “I want to be a girl” can seem contradictory when you say them so close together and without clarification on what you mean when you say each. Of course when you think about it it’s obvious you mean you know that you’re a girl personality-wise and you want to be a girl physically, but I wouldn’t expect that level of interpretation from the average reader of this site.

          • Kristen, I do understand you. In every way of possible. I’m transgender too. :)
            Aaaaand… HeavenlyArmed has the point. I wouldn’t expect that level from the average reader.

            • Yes, Male/Female, Boy/Girl is a choice and Kristen has made it pretty clear which one she’d prefer to go by. I don’t understand how this keeps coming up in every fucking thread that Kristen’s in.

              • Cos anons push Kristen’s buttons, and she responds earnestly. I believe the words “troll” and “feeding” come to mind.

                Kristen, please. These people are not here to discuss with you. They may NOT even hate trans people. They just want an emotional response. Stop replying.

  3. Twitter doesn’t appear pleased with your review, koku. Please lower your threshold for quality and replace all text with either smiley faces or frowny faces.

  4. I think a C- is very generous.

    Even with all the other errors, I think that bothers me the most about these subs is the use of two periods (..) instead of an ellipsis (…).

    • Two periods is a very underrated piece of punctuation. These subs suck, but I have to admire the courage they showed in being pioneers of style.

      • Charlotte, ep5, 13:54


        ~Professional TL~
        With that attractive a face, you might have issues dealing with women…
        I just didn’t want to say that because I’m annoyed by it.

        I was just thinking you must have your fair share of girl problems with that pretty facade of yours.
        I kept quiet since I didn’t want to offend.

        Guess which translation manages to not entirely butcher the meaning of the line and in fact is pretty much spot on. Hint: It’s not the one someone was paid to produce

  5. Got bored, so decided to read some archival blog posts. (also, that’s why I even bother writing this comment :P )

    > When you hear you da that means “apparently.” When you hear sou da that usually means “somebody said.”

    Actually it’s more about whether what you say is based on your own opinion (you da), or not (sou da, e.g. on something you’ve heard somewhere). I’m not a native English speaker, but I think the word “apparently” works very well in this case (“From what I’ve heard […]” would be too wordy IMHO, and “somebody said” more specific than the Japanese sentence)

    anyway, that’s just my nitpicking to your nitpicking :P


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