Created By: midone on May 17, 2013 Last Edited By: midone on May 18, 2013

Blank Sign Syndrome

Dubs Consume Words

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Have you seen Slenderman's face? you know how it's blank? In some English dubs of foreign shows (e.g Sonic X, Dragonball, Hamtaro) most official dubbing companies will be lazy and just make signs blank, or remove text on billboards, instead of just translating it. in that case, you can't find out which shops are which! we are doomed... sometimes, they will leave it Japanese, which is better than removing text altogether. 4kids almost always did this, and it didn't make sense... which sometimes leads to very dark theories... sometimes, it can make sense to do this in case of an naughty shop having a naughty sign... it depends on the situation. Goes well with the Lazy Artist Trope.
Community Feedback Replies: 14
  • May 17, 2013
    midone
    well, this is my first trope, folks. i am new!
  • May 17, 2013
    StarSword
    Huh. From outside I thought this was Complaining About Dubs You Don't Like. Needs a more descriptive title, and you should rewrite the laconic to explain the trope definition, but I think this is usable.
  • May 17, 2013
    Larkmarn
    Welcomes to YKTTW! I'd recommend taking a gander at YKTTW Guidelines, there's a lot of good information there.

    So... this is about dubbing companies blanking signs? Bowdlerise would probably cover it, especially in the cases where the signs are edited because they're naughty.
  • May 17, 2013
    StarSword
    ^Nah, this seems to be dubbing companies blanking signs because they don't want to take the time to rewrite the hiragana in English, never mind what the sign actually says (bowdlerizing NSFW would be an alternate reason). Could be indexed under Lazy Artist.
  • May 17, 2013
    midone
    Yes. We can see that. And this is some text that I think would be better off "eaten," especially considering your perspective on anime localization is limited to what's aired on Saturday mornings. When you say "most official dubbing companies," are you going to lump in the dearly departed Bandai Entertainment, Geneon, and ADV? What about still-living companies like FU Nimation, Sentai Filmworks, and Aniplex? (I would love to subject you to a few eps of the official English dub of Durarara, just to watch your head explode from all the Japanese text.)

    The vast majority of English dubs are uncensored and unaltered apart from English dialogue. 4Kids is one of the last companies left that censors anime in any way, and they're pretty much dead. I mean, when was the last time you even watched anime that wasn't a crappy fansub?
    Midone: Hey, remember this is my first time here, Ryusui.
  • May 17, 2013
    DracMonster
    Yeah this is somewhat akin to Dub Induced Plothole and Frothy Mugs Of Water. Not sure we need this, but maybe Blank In The Dub for a title if its a keeper.

    Though I'd call it Scrub A Dub Dub if it were up to me.. <mutter stupidclarityrules grumble>
  • May 17, 2013
    midone
    ...No need to scream...but thanks for the tips...

  • May 17, 2013
    midone
    Fixed up! now it uses 4kids in the past tense.
  • May 17, 2013
    DracMonster
    ..Uh, ok, the slenderman reference made me chuckle, but that one REALLY wont pass (as much as I like it personally.) It fails the clarity test for anyone who doesn't know about The Slenderman Mythos.

    Oh, and don't take anything here as screaming or chewing you out. Constructive criticism is the whole point of YKTT Ws.
  • May 17, 2013
    MorningStar1337
    how about Sign Scrubbing?
  • May 17, 2013
    McKathlin
    ^ I second Sign Scrubbing; it's clearer than the current title.
  • May 17, 2013
    midone
    What do you think of Blank Sign Syndrome?
  • May 18, 2013
    Stratadrake
    Trope names should generally not be to the form of "X effect" or "X syndrome". It's got an unfortunate history of being non-indicative (see Trope Namer Syndrome).

    Sign Scrubbing sounds cool, but it doesn't clarify that this is caused by localization.
  • May 18, 2013
    Prfnoff
    • The Latin translation of Asterix the Gaul leaves many footnotes blank because the jokes they contained were often impossible to translate.

Three days must pass before this YKTTW is Launchworthy or Discardable

http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/discussion.php?id=4kt708l2tmhpbibreedt8f1q