History Main / TactFulTranslation

18th Jun '16 3:40:54 PM TheNicestGuy
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* ''Series/KeyAndPeele'' uses an inversion as the premise for the "Luther, Anger Translator" series of sketches. President Obama (Peele) gives an address in typically mild [[WindbagPolitician politic-speak]], which Luther (Key) "translates" into the [[ChewingTheScenery intensely emotional]] language that he really means. The real Obama liked the routine so much that he invited Key to [[{{Defictionalization}} do it live]] with him at the 2015 White House Correspondents' Dinner.
7th Jun '16 2:50:44 PM Morgenthaler
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* ''TheWarlordChronicles'' gives us a page quote when the BoisterousBruiser Saxon warrior king Aelle faces off with a coalition of Briton princes, generals, and warlords. When called upon to surrender and offered mercy, Aelle responds with [[CutHisHeartOutWithASpoon an incredibly long-winded and detailed set of threats, tortures and torments]] toward every notable figure on the British side. (Believe it or not, the version on the quote page is ''much'' shorter than the full thing). The translator's version is simply "He says no." The trope also gets lampshaded, as right after Derfel translates Aelle's speech, Meurig responds "[[TranslationYes Surely he said more than that]]?" The OldSoldier Sagramor, [[SeenItAll who has been doing this sort of thing for his almost his entire life]], just tells Meurig "[[YouDoNotWantToKnow You don't want to know what he really said]]."
* In ''ASongOfIceAndFire'', when Daenerys negotiates for the purchase of a slave army in Astapor, one of the merchants insults her repeatedly with [[PoliticallyIncorrectVillain lewd and sexist comments]], but his young slave interpreter translates this much more politely. Of course, neither the slave nor the merchant [[CompletelyUnnecessaryTranslator realize at that point]] that [[ObfuscatingStupidity Dany actually does]] [[BilingualBackfire speak their language]]. She's impressed by the translator's wit and bring her into her service.

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* ''TheWarlordChronicles'' ''Literature/TheWarlordChronicles'' gives us a page quote when the BoisterousBruiser Saxon warrior king Aelle faces off with a coalition of Briton princes, generals, and warlords. When called upon to surrender and offered mercy, Aelle responds with [[CutHisHeartOutWithASpoon an incredibly long-winded and detailed set of threats, tortures and torments]] toward every notable figure on the British side. (Believe it or not, the version on the quote page is ''much'' shorter than the full thing). The translator's version is simply "He says no." The trope also gets lampshaded, as right after Derfel translates Aelle's speech, Meurig responds "[[TranslationYes Surely he said more than that]]?" The OldSoldier Sagramor, [[SeenItAll who has been doing this sort of thing for his almost his entire life]], just tells Meurig "[[YouDoNotWantToKnow You don't want to know what he really said]]."
* In ''ASongOfIceAndFire'', ''Literature/ASongOfIceAndFire'', when Daenerys negotiates for the purchase of a slave army in Astapor, one of the merchants insults her repeatedly with [[PoliticallyIncorrectVillain lewd and sexist comments]], but his young slave interpreter translates this much more politely. Of course, neither the slave nor the merchant [[CompletelyUnnecessaryTranslator realize at that point]] that [[ObfuscatingStupidity Dany actually does]] [[BilingualBackfire speak their language]]. She's impressed by the translator's wit and bring her into her service.



* ''TheDevilsDictionary'' defines an interpreter as "one who enables two persons of different languages to understand each other by repeating to each what it would have been to the interpreter's advantage for the other to have said".

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* ''TheDevilsDictionary'' ''Literature/TheDevilsDictionary'' defines an interpreter as "one who enables two persons of different languages to understand each other by repeating to each what it would have been to the interpreter's advantage for the other to have said".



* Funnily subverted in ''TheDresdenFiles''. In ''Changes'', Dresden meets the [[OurVampiresAreDifferent Red King]], who does not speak English. An unfortunate vamp is called to translate, and ''tries'' to do a tactful translation. She gets smacked by the Red King, and while he can't speak the local language, Dresden can get the gist that he's telling the poor girl "Translate it the way he says it, damn it."

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* Funnily subverted in ''TheDresdenFiles''.''Literature/TheDresdenFiles''. In ''Changes'', Dresden meets the [[OurVampiresAreDifferent Red King]], who does not speak English. An unfortunate vamp is called to translate, and ''tries'' to do a tactful translation. She gets smacked by the Red King, and while he can't speak the local language, Dresden can get the gist that he's telling the poor girl "Translate it the way he says it, damn it."
27th May '16 8:00:00 PM dmcreif
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* ''Series/BreakingBad'' uses the deadpan "that means no" version in the second season. After [[spoiler:Tuco's]] death, his uncle is asked if Jesse was there at the house during the time in question. If the uncle says yes, it would blow a major hole in the stories that Jesse and Walt have prepared and get them into a lot of trouble with the law. The uncle, however, is a RetiredMonster Mexican gangster, and despite being rendered mute and wheelchair bound by a stroke, he's not the type to cooperate with police. When Hank asks if the uncle is going to help them, the uncle responds by looking Hank dead in the eyes and taking a long, liquidy shit. (In other words, he ''literally'' shit on the idea.) Hank "translates" this as "I guess that's a no."

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* ''Series/BreakingBad'' uses the deadpan "that means no" version in the second season. After [[spoiler:Tuco's]] Tuco's death, his uncle Hector is brought to the DEA office and is asked if Jesse was there at the house during the time in question. If the uncle Hector says yes, it would blow a major hole in the stories that Jesse and Walt have prepared and get them into a lot of trouble with the law. The uncle, however, trouble. Fortunately, Gomez points out that Hector is a RetiredMonster [[RetiredMonster old-school Mexican gangster, gangster]], and despite being rendered mute and wheelchair bound by a stroke, he's not the type to cooperate with police. When Hank asks if the uncle Hector is going to help them, the uncle Hector responds by looking Hank dead in the eyes and taking eyes, then takes a long, liquidy shit. (In other words, he ''literally'' shit on the idea.) Hank "translates" this as "I )
-->'''Hank:''' I
guess that's a no."
15th May '16 7:09:53 AM PianoMurderer
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15th May '16 7:08:36 AM PianoMurderer
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* Viciously inverted in [[http://www.fimfiction.net/story/328981/travapestry Trav(ap)est(r)y]] within the FanFic/TriptychContinuum. Celestia is used to dealing with [[StrawmanNewsMedia Wordia Spinner]] and so spends their meetings playing a silent game called Translation, in which she takes what the Loyal Opposition's reporter is ''saying'' and mentally swaps in what was ''meant''.
-->"So when he heard you'd lost an original Marble Whispers piece -- and incidentally, he wanted me to say he's ''very'' sorry about the fire..."
-->''"He's very sorry the two of you didn't die in it."''
12th Apr '16 2:49:42 PM MonaNaito
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* A professional interpreter joke features and inversion: "Two world leaders were having a jovial and warmhearted conversation... until their interpreter arrived."

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* A professional interpreter joke features and an inversion: "Two world leaders were having a jovial and warmhearted conversation... until their interpreter arrived."
* Another joke that inverts this trope:
** A gangster takes a translator to visit the shop of a man, whose brother has just died. He had taken money from the gangster and hid it away somewhere - and the gangster assumed he had told his only living relative, his brother. But the brother only spoke Italian, you see, which is why a translator was needed.\\
\\
When the two got to the shop, the gangster asks the translator to translate everything exactly - so he does. "Do you know where your brother hid our money?", the gangster asks, and the man answers "No." This goes on for a while, the translator pausing to make sure he has everything correct before he translates. Eventually, getting fed-up, the gangster pulls out his gun and snarls. "Listen, if you don't tell me where that money is, I'll shoot you in the head!" The translator tells the man this, who confesses; it's in the back-yard of his house, beneath the apple tree, and the gangster can have it back; he doesn't need it!\\
\\
The translator pauses, and says, "He says you don't have the balls to shoot him, boss."
* A bit of office humor involves a miserable idea which gets lousy feedback among the workers ("It is a crock of shit, and it stinks!") slowly being transmuted by tactful translation ("It is a pot of fertilizer and nobody can stand its stench"; "it is that which promotes plant growth and nobody can abide how strongly it smells"; "it is a promoter of growth and is very strong") up the corporate ladder, until the CEO hears nothing but praise ("It is strong and will promote our company's growth!") and declares it to be good. Thus the plan becomes policy; or to put it another way, shit happens.



* There's also a joke floating around that inverts this trope:
** A gangster takes a translator to visit the shop of a man, whose brother has just died. He had taken money from the gangster and hid it away somewhere - and the gangster assumed he had told his only living relative, his brother. But the brother only spoke Italian, you see, which is why a translator was needed.\\
\\
When the two got to the shop, the gangster asks the translator to translate everything exactly - so he does. "Do you know where your brother hid our money?", the gangster asks, and the man answers "No." This goes on for a while, the translator pausing to make sure he has everything correct before he translates. Eventually, getting fed-up, the gangster pulls out his gun and snarls. "Listen, if you don't tell me where that money is, I'll shoot you in the head!" The translator tells the man this, who confesses; it's in the back-yard of his house, beneath the apple tree, and the gangster can have it back; he doesn't need it!\\
\\
The translator pauses, and says, "He says you don't have the balls to shoot him, boss."
* A bit of office humor involves a miserable idea which gets lousy feedback among the workers ("It is a crock of shit, and it stinks!") slowly being transmuted by tactful translation ("It is a pot of fertilizer and nobody can stand its stench"; "it is that which promotes plant growth and nobody can abide how strongly it smells"; "it is a promoter of growth and is very strong") up the corporate ladder, until the CEO hears nothing but praise ("It is strong and will promote our company's growth!") and declares it to be good. Thus the plan becomes policy; or to put it another way, shit happens.
26th Mar '16 7:15:31 PM StClair
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* Averted in ''Film/{{Patton}}''; when at the joint celebration with the Russians, Patton is offered a drink. His response? "I won't drink with that Russian son of a bitch." The translator, obviously, states that he cannot say such a thing, but Patton tells him to say it, "word for word." After doing so, the Russian general responds back, "I also think YOU are a son of a bitch." ''That'' is something Patton will drink to, [[ActuallyPrettyFunny one son of a bitch to another]].

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* Averted in ''Film/{{Patton}}''; when at the joint celebration with the Russians, Patton is offered a drink. His response? "I won't drink with that Russian son of a bitch." The translator, obviously, states translator tries to protest that he cannot say such a thing, but Patton tells him to say it, "word for word." After doing so, the Russian general responds back, "I also think YOU are a son of a bitch." ''That'' is something Patton will drink to, [[ActuallyPrettyFunny one son of a bitch to another]].
15th Mar '16 5:48:41 PM HeraldAlberich
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* ''Series/YoungIndianaJones:'' While fighting in the Mexican revolution, Indy is tasked with translating the title cards of captured American silent films and newsreels. When the reel turns to the revolution from an American perspective, Indy attempts to play off the footage as respectful to Pancho Villa, but fails: the revolutionaries shoot up the theater.

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* ''Series/YoungIndianaJones:'' While fighting in the Mexican revolution, Indy is tasked with translating the title cards {{Title Card}}s of captured American silent films and newsreels. When the reel turns to the revolution from an American perspective, Indy attempts to play off the footage as respectful to Pancho Villa, but fails: the revolutionaries shoot up the theater.
29th Jan '16 1:36:08 PM Allronix
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* PlayedForLaughs constantly with hapless Protocol droids and translators in ''VideoGame/StarWarsTheOldRepublic,'' doubly so if they're translating for Hutts. Huttese is second only to Galactic Basic as a "default" language, and all of the {{PlayerCharacter}}s are perfectly able to understand it, but there are still situations where the Hutt will declare something like ''"Winner gets to eat my translator!"'' and the hapless translator has to spin it "Uh..may the winners feast on victory!"
26th Dec '15 7:21:06 AM darksoul4242
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-->'''translation:''' I'm glad you like it.

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-->'''translation:''' -->'''Translation:''' I'm glad you like it.
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