Friday, August 31, 2007

Still more translation differences

In the Japanese version Akane does not mention the Indian epic hero Rama. She mentions the Japanese transom panels that the arrow is pointing at. More info on the Japanese transom panels can be found at the Table Asia Gallery.

Historical use of them quoted from the Table Asia Gallery:
Ranma (also spelled Rama or Ramma) transom were used in Japanese architecture, because the typical room dividing fusuma or shoji doors are under six feet in height, there is space in between the top of the sliding door and ceiling. Ranma, (literally: space for ran, a type of wood) or transom panels, are used to artistically fill those spaces. They also serve the practical purpose of allowing ventilation and light into the interior of a house or temple. Ranma can be carved three dimensional pictorial scenes, geometric slatted wood designs, or natural wood slices of trees.

Generally, the more intricately carved and three dimensional, the older the ranma transom. Ranma transom can have black lacquered wood frames or a natural finish.

I included the Japanese version below in case you can read it and because you can make the details out much easier.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Ranma Beast Wars

According to the site Beast Wars International The circled part in the above picture is a reference to Ranma. The gesture is "oyakusoku pozu" (promise pose) it is a sign of surprise or shock.

Megatron's hand gesture here is a reference to an anime show called Ranma 1/2' in which David Kaye featured. David plays the main girl's (Soun Tendo) father. Whenever confused in the show, they use that gesture.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Japanese Ranma Javascript games

I was browsing some Japanese sites about Ranma and found these Javascript games.

The games are at this site:

Since I'm assuming the majority of my readers can't read Japanese I'll describe the games:

Game 1: is a wack a mole game. P-chan and Happosai pop up you try and hit the disguised Happosai and not P-chan. The far right is where you pick the difficulty level. Hitting the button on the bottom starts the game.

Game 2: I don't know Japanese well enough to understand the story behind the game completely though I do know it involves Shampoo feeding Ranma Manju (Japanese Cakes) and her eating it as well with the last one rotten. Depending on your choices a certain number of the cakes will be eaten. To win get Shampoo to eat the last one. This game has to be downloaded to your computer. It is saved in LHZ format so you will first have to uncompress it (I used a program called extractnow). You will also have to have Japanese as a language on your computer to read it though you can play it without Japanese on your computer (just make random guess's). To play it you just hit the exe after it has opened. To uninstall it just delete the folder it's in. Picture of the game is at top the of this post.

Game 3: This game needs no instructions its very easy to play. Just don't let the bouncing ball fall off the bottom of the screen. The point of this game is to strip Akane to her undergarments.

Friday, August 24, 2007

Obsession with Ranma

I admit that I have somewhat of an obsession with the Ranma ½ manga. If I didn't I wouldn't have written as many posts as I have or used examples from the manga to discuss various topics as frequently. Though thinking about it I am also very interested in Ranma fanfiction since several posts exist solely to counter some things I see in fan fiction and disagree with.

I some times think that I'm too obsessed with Ranma ½. When I think that I even if I am, there are other people who are or were as obsessed or even more obsessed with it than I am and there are worse things to obsess about. Sure there aren't that many websites devoted to Ranma as there were (were a lot thousands upon thousands) but that is because the Ranma fandom is aging and going on to new obsessions. I generally maintaining the things that I like forever.

Some fans have taken it upon themselves to translate the manga. That must have taken a long time. Multiple groups of fans have done it. There was the Ranmascan project (the most commonly found fan scans on the internet of the manga were done by the Ranmascan project), Studio Robb did several volumes (though those are no longer on that site), the defunct Wot-club (link goes to the internet archive of the site) had volumes 23-38 in text translation, and there was another text translation that I don't have a clue as to where it was or where it could be found now. Those are just the English language fan translations that I know about; it has been translated by fans in many languages. I have seen fan translations in Russian, German, Italian, Spanish, Chinese, and yet other English translations (then there are the official translations in more than 20 languages now).

Other fans have written fan fiction. A lot of fan fiction. At the time this was written (August 24, 2007) had 8,629 fanfics. There were even more than that on it in the past. I know it had at least one crash that lost many of the fics and it had purged itself of many of the Ranma NC-17 fics and song fics as well. Not every writer of fan fiction had placed their fan fics on that website instead had personal websites or used a different fan fiction archive. The RAAC Archive had over 2,300 fanfics most of which are not on The Fanfiction Mailing List (link goes to a site where you can search its posts) was/is mostly about Ranma fanfiction.

Other fans spent countless hours just cataloging Ranma fanfiction. One such site was the Ranma 1/2 Super Highway, another one was The Penultimate Ranma Fanfic Index, and another one is Ranchan Totally Crossed Out! - this ones still active, another one is Lady Cosmos Fanfic Library, another one is The Lost Library, and another is Ranma's Senshi Seifuku - Ranma in a fuku (Sailormoon crossovers), and another one is Ranma 1/2 Lemon Story Archive - this one is NC-17 rated. There are several more.

I've gone on enough for now but I'll mention that others have spent countless hours drawing pictures, making crafts (saw some hand made P-chan pillows), making Doujinshi, translating the games, building and maintaining forums, creating websites, calculating Ranma's physical abilities (know of at least 4 different sites/people who did this), creating games, making music videos, shockwave games, translating some of the fan fiction into other languages, making audio books of some of the fan fiction, creating a webcomic based on it (for example Sailor Ranko), etc.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Ranma in Russian has Volume 1 of Ranma ½ translated into Russian. If you want it get it fast, Ranma is being translated commercially in Russia so it will be taken down (one of, if not the first, Japanese Manga to be commercially translated into Russian). The site has other manga translated into Russian as well. Very good manga Slayers, DNA^2, Love Hina, Dr Slump, Hellsing, and more. The Russian official version also added the secondary title "Пол Ранмы" (Pol Ranmy), which can mean both "One half of Ranma" and "Ranma's gender".

Monday, August 20, 2007

Common Name

The website Anime Characters' Name Guide has a list of names taken from various anime including Ranma ½ and tells you how common a name is.

Saotome,RanmaRanma 1/2Saotome

The above is taken from the site. What it tells us is that Saotome is a minor name that you'll hear sometimes, the 107 is the number of times the name occurred in a South Kanto phone book, and that Ranma is a very rare name. The site is very useful for finding a Japanese name to use for a story.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Japanese Body Language

Ranma in the manga uses a lot of hand gestures more so than the rest of the cast combined. He uses hand gestures 355 times in the manga according to a 1996 issue of Shonen Sunday. If your wondering what those gestures mean check this site out: JAPANESE BODY LANGUAGE;
Non-Verbal Communication in the Classroom
it explains Japanese body language.

The gesture in the above image is called the "oyakusoku pozu" (promise pose). According to a website I read it is a sign of surprise or shock.

Some Random ones:
-Holding up the pinkie is the way to make a discreet reference to having a girlfriend or female lover.
-Batsu is a gesture made by crossing one's arms in the shape of an "X" in front of them, in order to indicate that something is "wrong", "bad", or "no good".
Two pointer fingers crossing to form an X can also be used to signal for a check.
-Okay in the USA (touching of the index finger with the thumb, forming a rough circle, with the raising of the remaining fingers) means money in Japan.
-Throat slash, aka fingers or thumb across throat in a gesture reminiscent of cutting it, to show one's failure, and could also mean to be dismissed or fired.
-Tugging at the eye, often accompanied by sticking out one's tongue, is a childishly offensive gesture.
-Knocking on your temple with the knuckle of the index finger means " I'm such an idiot".

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Super human abilities, mundane purpose

It is my belief that a super human should occasionally use his abilities for mundane tasks. In a lot of fan fiction, or stories in general, containing super human people they only use their abilities in combat situations. I never understood that. Unless they are trying to keep their abilities secret, they would use their abilities for mundane tasks. Think about it if you suddenly acquired a super human ability that could help you with your chores, you'd use it wouldn't you?

This particularly bothers me when the character is shown to often use his super human abilities in everyday circumstances in the source material but limits himself to mundane abilities in fan fiction. What is even worse is when a super human doesn't use an ability that was originally created to make life easier not for combat.

Here are some examples: Ranma is often seen using his super human abilities for common things that are rarely shown in fan fiction. The biggest most easily shown one is his wall climbing/clinging to ceilings. In fan fiction Ranma rarely even uses this ability, whereas in the manga he does this often for a wide variety of reasons some examples: to play a prank on Gosunkugi, to spy on people, to hang decorations, to hide, and occasionally for no reason at all other than he can.

The breaking point and shi shi hadoken where not originally created for combat. They were created to make life easier and safer for miners. In fan fiction I don't remember ever seeing Ryoga or Ranma use them for mundane purposes even though we do see them used that way in the manga. Ryoga uses those techniques to tunnel through the Earth while traveling. Miss Hinako used her ki blast to propel herself through the water since she couldn't swim.

Monday, August 13, 2007

Tendo House layout & Character heights

This site has a sketch of the Tendo compound and floor plan with guesstimated character heights based on the Oav.

Friday, August 10, 2007

Ranma Music Videos

There are many very good Ranma music videos on the internet. Youtube and Anime Music Videos have quite a few and there are some on Ranma Romance. I'd list my favorite ones but I don't really feel like doings so at this time.

Few Things I wondered about on Star Trek

While watching television, I often have questions pop into my head. Here's a list of some of the things I started to think about while watching a few episodes of Star Trek Voyager.

Why does the holographic doctor stumble when the ship gets attacked? He's a hologram he shouldn't stumble.

When Voyager went back in time and dealt with the 29th century technology, why didn't they sling-shot around the sun to get back to their own time instead of going back to being 70,000 light years from home? That is an established means of time traveling in the Star Trek universe.

Were surge protectors or battery operated consoles never invented? Crewmen die from consoles exploding far too often.

How do they read their hand held scanners? It gives them all kinds of information but doesn't have a real display just blinking lights.

Why do the Viidians need slaves to dig tunnels, since they have transporter technology?

Why doesn't the Federation use subdermial tracking chips since it's obvious that combadges are commonly stolen/lost?

Why are interspecies babies so easy to produce when chimpanzee have around 99% the same DNA as humans and they can't be bred together whereas aliens that have evolved on entirely different worlds can?

How is it that an alien culture thousands of light years from earth have pet dogs- a species that originated on earth (Episode ex post facto)?

In the Voyager episode Eye of the Needle, It is mentioned that there is a one in four chance of the wormhole leading to the Alpha Quadrant. Why can't the wormhole lead to somewhere else entirely like the void between galaxies or another galaxy?

In one episode the ship's crew go to a small asteroid my question is: How is it possible that a small asteroid has an earth-like atmosphere and gravity while being mostly hollow?

What purpose do the pilots serve? Couldn't the captain just tell the computer directly. Even in battles the computers would have to be doing basically everything since the ship can move and react far faster than a person could enter commands.

When they say two to beam up, how does the person manning the transporter know which two when there are more than two people present?

Sunday, August 5, 2007

Some of the Honorific usage in Ranma ½

See the wikipedia article on Japanese honorifics to get the basics of honorfics. The below is an incomplete accounting of honorific usage in the Ranma ½ manga.

Ranma is generally disrespectful and rarely uses any honorifics. Though he will occasionally use them and does know the proper usage. He refers to Kuno with -sempai, sarcastically often though. Calls Soun ojisan (uncle), Ucchan (childhood nickname) for Ukyo, -san for Kasumi (though also has used oniichan), Ojiisan (grandfather) for Happosai and Obaasan (grandmother) for Cologne occasionally. For his mother uses ofukuro in his thoughts and obasama when he spoke to her while pretending to be Ranko. While in disguise he uses the appropriate honorifics for the situation; example during the time he pretended to be a normal girl to get in the locker room where he thought a magic pool was under (it had already dried out) he used -chan for Akane. He also uses insult names sometimes like calling Nabiki Bitch (in fan translated - the actual Japanese word is different but basically means the same thing -temee which is actually a rude form of you) or Old Ghoul to Cologne.

Cologne uses -dono when referring to Ranma which implies that she respects Ranma to a large degree.

Kuno sometimes uses -kun for Akane.

Soun and Genma use family name-kun when talking to each other, i.e. Tendo-kun.

Genma has used -kun for Akane.

Akane doesn't use any honorific for Ranma and if she starts to do so it would imply that the relationship is breaking apart. She refers to Ryoga as Ryoga-kun and Kuno with -sempai. Uses ojisama for Genma.

Kodachi uses -sama for Ranma, and family name-san for everyone else, she is extremely formal.

Konatsu uses -sama for Ukyou, Ranma, and Akane. He praises and raises status of other people while lowering his own status.

Nabiki refers to Kuno with -chan probably to annoy him and calls Ranma by his family name most of the time. Ojisan for Genma

Happosai uses -chan for Ranma and Akane.

Ryoga is very respectful to most people and refers to them with -san. He even uses that for Akane, even poked it into the rock while writing her name in the breaking point arc.

Shampoo doesn't use honorifics because she either doesn't know the proper usage or is purposely being rude. Calls Ranma Airen which is in Chinese the dominant word used for spouse (literally means love person Ai=love Ren=Person) .

Ukyou normally uses -chan when referring to anyone and Ranchan for Ranma.

Hinako uses the family name-san for Ranma and the other students.

Principal Kuno uses English honorifics. For example, Miss Akane.

Saturday, August 4, 2007

The Wotch

The plot of the webcomic The Wotch is influenced by Ranma ½ according to wikipedia. The site itself says that one of the characters, Mingmei Wu, favorite movie is Ranma ½: Nihao My Concubine. I have yet to read this webcomic so I can't say much about it.