"Darien? Serena? I've never heard these names before. What is it that you want?"
So you're translating and/or adapting an ongoing story from another locale, and for whatever reason – maybe your boss ordered you
to tone things down
to appease Moral Guardians
or commercial sponsors, or etc. – you've made significant changes to the original content. But then additional material from the original source comes in, and there's something in there that just doesn't work with the alterations you've already made (in a worst-case scenario, the new material explicitly contradicts your changes); maybe it's a Japan-centred story where a change in honorifics
occurs but you cut them all out for ease of flow†
, or a character whose death you censored
has to come Back from the Dead
, or you excised content
that later turns out to have had a major impact on the story's plot.
What do you do? Well, there are three options. The first is to ignore changes in the source and just keep adapting the story as you always have, hoping that the series won't collapse under the weight of its own contradictions; this is high-risk because there is a point where no amount of editing or rewriting can change what's in front of you. The second option is to try and explain the discrepancies away using the best leaps of logic and (if applicable) technobabble you can, which runs the risk of making your viewers aware of the changes (which is never a good thing). The third option is to just completely blow it off! Just pretend the last change you
made never happened and adapt the source as-is. So what if you just took a two by four to the plot? Who cares if your dialogue doesn't make any sense? Send that script out the door, and let the fans deal with it. If you even assume that the fans are smart enough
, particularly given their age
, to notice.
Yes, sometimes the guys working on a script, having written themselves into a corner, will completely blow off the changes they already made and start adapting something completely literally, even if the resulting script makes no sense, even in the context of itself. Sometimes they'll even adapt a cultural custom with zero explanation – and nobody in the show will act surprised. The resulting disconnect creates a big giant plot hole and the only recourse of the fan is to just look up the original version, or just ignore it themselves
This trope is specifically for localization of a work in its own medium. If this is caused through adaptation of a work to a different medium, it's an Adaptation-Induced Plot Hole
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- The former Trope Namer Sailor Moon regularly fell victim to this, which is not surprising given the amounts of censorship and changes usually done to its foreign adaptations.
- One particularly infamous instance, referenced in the page quote, occurs in the DiC dub of the first season where Mamoru is brainwashed and falls into an Evil Costume Switch version of his alter ego Endymion. For some reason, the English dub decided to keep his past name the same as his reborn name, which got to be very awkward when he didn't recognize the name "Darien" even though he called himself Prince Darien.
- They did it again when the gang gets transported to Crystal Tokyo by Darien's future self, King Endymion. Apparently, "Endymion" was too hard for the dubbers to pronounce, because he introduces himself to the Senshi with the not-at-all-awkward "Call me... 'King Of The Earth'". Serena, surprisingly, is still referred to as Neo-Queen Serenity here.
- And when the dub was continued by Cloverway, one of the later episodes of SuperS finally mentioned the name "Endymion"... except that anyone who was unfamiliar with the original version was not going to know where this name came from all of a sudden.
- Several plotholes popped up because episode 42, the episode that covered Minako's backstory, was dropped. This episode showed the team desperately searching for an entrance in their area to the Dark Kingdom, as well as establishing that the sun was slowly being covered by sun spots, heralding the return of Queen Metaria. They find the entrance at the end of the episode, leading directly to their first assault in Episode 44. There was also another scene of Mamoru being brainwashed and Metaria actually possessing his body, thus explaining why it was so hard to get through to him when he fought with Sailor Moon in the last episode. Since all of this is missing from the dub, the Sailor Scouts are just running into the Negaverse with no explanation, making one wonder why they didn't do this before considering how just one episode earlier, they were willing to make a Deal with the Devil to get Serena inside. There is no explanation for why Sailor Moon's abilities don't work on Mamoru anymore, though Beryl makes a remark that she put a better spell on him (creating a new plot hole - why didn't she just use that spell from the start?!). There are also numerous shots of the sun in the last episode of the dub (all shots from the combined 45-46) that show the progression of the sun spots. These are left as random, unexplained images in the dub — they never bothered to explain why they were showing images of the sun getting blacked out.
- Another confusing moment is the English dub's awkward explanation for how they found the entrance with episode 42 cut out. They tried to fix that with the claim that 'Central Control' gave Luna and Artemis the information. The problem with that? It was made clear several episodes earlier that Central Control was really just Artemis with a computer.
- Sailor Mercury's death in episode 45 originally showed her breaking the illusion device the DD Girls had been using to attack the Senshi. Because episodes 45-46 were heavily edited to cover up the deaths of the main characters, the dub cut almost the entire sequence, so it appears that the Doom and Gloom Girls inexplicably stop using the illusions that had helped them take out two of the Scouts effortlessly.
- Also the deaths of Mercury, Jupiter, Venus and Mars were censored as having them held prisoner in the Negaverse. Except Mars being "held prisoner" makes no sense since she kills the last two Doom and Gloom Girls by herself so there was no one to take her to the Negaverse.
- Another instance cropped up when somebody forgot that the final two episodes of the first season had such alterations made to it. The Japanese version of Episode 46 had a brief scene in the middle of the episode where Mamoru's mental conflict of trying to undo Metaria's brainwashing was shown in his mind as himself in a hospital bed struggling to remember who he was (mirroring his original amnesia over his past before he lost his parents). Usagi, in her school uniform (not as Sailor Moon) appeared and promised she would help him. This scene was, in the dub, used at the end of the episode instead and presented as an event that actually happened, which caused any number of plotholes — such as, why was Darien in the hospital and everyone else from the same fight okay despite everyone suffering grave injury? And how come just one episode later, despite Serena introducing herself to him in the hospital and apparently forming a friendship, do they act like they barely know each other and the hospital scene is never referenced again?
- Suprisingly enough, this was already a problem in the original Japanese. In the first episode of the second season, Usagi and Mamoru are back to bickering as they always were, with Usagi even saying Mamoru "always" calls her Odango-Atama. The very next episode, Mamoru acts like her never met Usagi before.
- The dub also provides absolutely no reason why the girls and Darien lose their memories after the climactic battle. This was because they were trying to once again hide the deaths of the main characters, as they had all died after the fight but were reincarnated without the memories of the conflict by Usagi's wish to return to a life without war.
- In the Makaiju Arc, DiC changed Ali (Allan) and En's (Ann's) backstory so they were affiliated with the Negaverse and knew Queen Beryl (and that it was apparently her who "advised" them to go after Earth), because apparently Viewers Are Morons and couldn't accept that two groups of villains are not affiliated. That makes little sense when we learn their actual backstories, but even before that is headscratching - in episode 49 (43 in the dub), Serena shows Darien some pictures of the battle with Beryl to help him regain his memories... and Ann is right next to them. The fact that this mere earthling knows about her acquaintance/workmate/something doesn't really seem to bother her, or come up when she's trying to uncover Sailor Moon's secret identity.
Ali: Queen Beryl was right about Earth
En: Who the f*ck is Queen Beryl?
- And in a similar situation to Endymion/Darien mentioned above, the dub decided that the two aliens would be Ann and Alan in both their alien and civilian forms. Yet it took the Scouts an entire story arc to piece together they're the same people.
- A particularly amusing plothole involves Kaolinite's alias, Kaori. In the dub, when Serena/Usagi visits Dr. Tomoe, she is surprised to see Kaolinite (Kaori Night in the dub) there. In the original, Tomoe says that she is his assistant, Kaori, so Usagi is relieved. In the dub, however, the assistant is ALSO named Kaori Night, prompting Serena to say "I thought she was the evil Kaori Night, but she must be someone else!". Epic Clark Kenting.
- A smaller example is that in the S season, Amara and Michelle are always calling Usagi "Serena-moon-face-girl", which is not only a stupid insult but it was long before they actually knew Serena was indeed, Sailor Moon.
- On a related note, the dub tried very hard to rub that "cousins" thing in the audience's face; they did that by having at least one line per episode announcing that (ex. "Oh, she's my cousin, Michelle"; "They're both girls, and cousins too!"). But at least once Kaolinite was the person spouting said line, which makes no sense as Kaolinite couldn't know Sailor Neptune and Sailor Uranus' identities and, therefore, couldn't know they were related.
- An epic plot hole comes in the English dub of episode 96 ("Lita Borrows Trouble"). Lita is riding in a car with Amara and Michelle and this comes up:
Lita: How'd you guys meet then?
Michelle: We're cousins
. We grew up together. [Lita lets out a shocked expression]
Amara: We've been inseparable since we were born.
- ...Then comes episode 106 ("Related by Destiny"), when the two are revealed to be cousins who "grew apart". So much for the "inseparable since we were born", huh.
- In the episode where we find out Hotaru is Sailor Saturn, the dub makes Uranus, Neptune and Pluto aware that Saturn will appear, when they originally weren't. This wasn't a major change by itself, but the dub also stated the Sovereign of Silence would appear when Saturn eclipses the other planets. Not only could Saturn not eclipse all the other planets, but it was Sailor Saturn that was revealed, not the Messiah of Silence. The dub still tried to make it happen, though, which included giving the Monster of the Week additional "magnetic" powers to pull Saturn into position (which wouldn't work anyway, considering the distance from Saturn and the fact that it's a gas giant).
- The dub's tendency to have Pegasus randomly calling Rini by name (the original had him calling her "Maiden") backfired near the end of the season, ruining a scene where in the Japanese version Helios finally calls her "Chibiusa". The dub had to use "Minimoon" instead, which is not her name — yet her reaction is pretty much the same as in the original.
- Fisheye, a very feminine man whose gender is usually changed due to his obvious homosexuality and his habit of physically changing to a female form in his civilian disguises, has a shirtless scene in one episode that was intended to make sure viewers knew he really was a man. Most dubs that swapped his gender cut the scene for obvious reasons. Emphasis on most. The French dub kept this intact with no explanation. The Russian dub did as well, though a bystander call "her" an uncouth woman. The English dub on Toonami's run tried to fix the camera angles to keep most of the scene anyway, but this made the scene even racier because they framed every shot as if Fisheye was a topless woman who was flashing everyone around her. The DVD release kept the video footage unaltered, thus have a clearly male Fisheye being referred to as a girl.
- Given the overall quality of the Russian SuperS dub, a number of fans actually blame the entire case of Fisheye's gender change on the new translators simply not having done the research rather than censorship (nobody seemed to have problems with Zoisite or Haruka crossdressing before that point, with all the homosexual relationships barely toned down). Notably, it wasn't until a few episodes into the season when it became clear Fisheye was indeed male. (Did we mention that the Starlights occasionally retained men's voices even in the Sailor Senshi forms?)
- In the German dub, Fish Eye has a female voice, even though it is even stated that he's male. But if you compare to the Japanese version, Fish Eye sounds very female there despite having a male seiyuu.
- An oddly inverted example happened in the Russian-dubbed filler episode of S involving Tamasaburou. The character in question is known to have been changed into a girl in the English dub, presumably because he crossdressed at the end of the episode. In the Russian dub, Chibiusa identifies the character as a "young man" when she first sees him, but after a proper introduction the character is consistently referred to as female, with no explanation.
- A much worse case is the Russian dub of the Stars season, where Haruka basically was turned into another Starlight — they gave her a really bad man's voice in civilian form. This, despite the fact that the character was acknowledged as female in S, which was translated by another company. The fact that the change was done to cover up the infamous relationship (left unchanged by the previous translators) is pretty obvious from the dialogue.
- Because the Swedish network Tv4 didn't want the audience to be confused by Japanese songs, they asked the dubbing company to remove any song - and, when that was impossible, to skip the episode altogether. This led to several plotholes in the R season, the biggest being the Senshi suddenly knowing all about the Black Moon and Crystal Tokyo because we weren't shown episode 68.
- An early episode in the show concerned the Ami befriending the caretaker of a park that was about to be demolished for office space. The Green Aesop turns dark when Nephrite plants a youma in the old man's hat and he causes the park's animals to destroy the construction equipment. Now, in the Japanese version, this causes the construction project to end due to the construction crews being afraid of returning to the park, resolving the subplot. In the dub, the exact same scene where the old man is given this information is instead changed to the Corrupt Corporate Executive rejecting him once again and vowing to destroy the park. The dub never mentions the park subplot again, so it's up in the air whether the park is saved or not (especially since the CEO was still attacked by bloodthirsty squirrels in both versions...)
- In the very first episode, Naru's ("Molly" in the English dub) mother is replaced by a Shapeshifting youma. In the manga and anime, the youma states that she left Naru's mom Bound and Gagged in the basement after stealing her form (the manga even shows her tied up with some tape over her mouth), and that she plans on killing her later. This is completely cut out of the English dub, with the only reference to her fate being a line from Tuxedo Mask about how Naru's mom had been freed along with the women whom had been drained of their energy by the Youma. This makes no sense, as Naru's mother wasn't shown among the youma's victims, and certainly wasn't in the store when they were being drained of their energy.
- The Hungarian dub, besides carrying the faults of the French translation it had been adapted from, had a very messy script in general because the translator, who has admitted to not being very good at French, only understood an odd word here and there. So you have things like characters shouting angrily when they're obviously happy, telling others to change into their Sailor gear when they already have, and a "Blind Idiot" Translation in general.
Anime & Manga
- During their unfortunate 2½ year possession of One Piece, 4Kids managed to cut out nearly 30% of the series.note Their dub often explained the contradictions via a series of extremely confusing edits (chiefly involving how the crew managed to acquire important Plot Coupons without actually going through the arc they got it in). Had their run continued† , the confusion would have only gotten worse, because this is a series where seemingly insignificant details tend to return with a plot-critical vengeance several hundred chapters/episodes later.
- By far the most infamous edit-by-omission 4Kids made was their decision to cut out the first leg of the Grand Line – Laboon and Little Garden – in order to more quickly reach the point where a cute, highly-marketable new crew member (i.e. Chopper) is introduced. The ramifications of this are discussed in detail below.
- The Straw Hats' knowing Laboon turns out to be the primary reason one of the later crew members decides to join them.
- Meeting the Elbaf Giants, Dorry & Broggy, on Little Garden provided the motivation for Usopp to finally start improving himself. It's also how he convinced the Gatekeeper Giants of Enies Lobby (Season 5) to turn on the World Government and briefly team up with the Straw Hats.note
- 4Kids's decision came back to haunt them even before the main arc ended. They had to completely rewrite the "Rain Dinners" scene† after Mr.3 comes in, because removing Little Garden meant Mr.3 was never introduced, let alone defeated, and thus Sanji never impersonated him while taking a call from Crocodile, thus Crocodile never had any reason to feed Mr.3 to the banana-gator (except just to show he's a bad guy).
- Luffy refusing to take Miss All-Sunday's Eternal pose to Alabasta became a non-issue, because Vivi somehow happens to have one (in the not-4Kids versions, Sanji stole the eternal pose from Mr.3 on Little Garden).
- Minor example compared to the whoppers above: Nami contracted her near-fatal disease – the treatment of which ultimately resulted in Chopper joining the Straw Hats – on Little Garden.
- 4Kids's editing during the Arlong Arc also created some facepalm-worthy plot holes.
- Partway through the arc, when Usopp is taken to Arlong Park and sees Nami. In the uncut version of that sequence, Arlong gives Nami a knife to prove her loyalty by stabbing Usopp. She decides to fake it, putting her hand in front of Usopp and stabbing through it, allowing a shocked Usopp to fall into the pool behind him, drenched in her blood. In the 4Kids version, through very cheap copy-pasting of scenes, Nami elaborates an impossibly convenient plan to Usopp while preparing to "stab" him – Usopp had to replace Nami's knife with a rubber knife (that he conveniently had with him, and that conveniently looked exactly the same as Arlong's knife), Nami hits him with it, and the rest of the scene is played largely the same.† But in the next episode, Nami's hand is just suddenly injured for absolutely no reason.
- They cut out that arc's denouement almost in its entirety, skipping straight from Luffy beating Arlong to the crew leaving Cocoyashi village, leaving no explanation as to why Johnny and Yosaku were suddenly gone or why Nami suddenly had a different tattoo. In the uncut version, Johnny and Yosaku explained that they had to go back to their jobs as bounty hunters, and Nami – who tried to remove the Arlong tattoo on her shoulder by stabbing it repeatedly with her knife – asked to have the remains of it drawn over to make a pinwheel and tangerine.
- A minor one occurs in the Buggy Arc of the 4kids dub. Zoro calls Nami by name at a point when he would have no reason to know it, as neither she nor Luffy had told him yet.
- Even the normally-steller Funimation uncut redub falls prey to this a couple of times.
- First and foremost, when Funi got the One Piece license, Toei's broadcast contract with Cartoon Network was still in effect, meaning they had to start dubbing right where 4Kids stopped – the beginning of Season 3. The reason this was a problem is because Cartoon Network forced Funi to keep to 4Kids's established continuity to avoid confusion – CN either didn't know or didn't care how problematic this could have become later on… although it didn't because CN cancelled the show due to ratings not improving quickly enough. Funimation, to their credit, responded to this by making two complete dubs for Season 3: a TV dub that kept continuity with the 4Kids version, and the uncut dub that appeared on the DVD sets.
- In Episode 68, Monkey D. Garp is referred to as an Admiral rather than his correct rank of Vice-Admiral. This becomes a major inconsistency when you learn later that Garp has turned down getting promoted to Admiral several times in the past. However, in every subsequent appearance, Funimation's dub does refer to Garp by his proper rank.
- In Chapter 217 of the manga, Smoker states that Zoro defeated Daz Bones, Baroque Works's "Mr.1" – he specifically says "defeated", which left Mr. 1's fate ambiguous for a time. Later on, the cover page of Chapter 361 revealed that he was still alive and would later appear during the last few Arcs before the Time Skip. However, Funimation's dub of Episode 130 has Smoker say that Mr.1 was outright killed by Zoro.
- Admittedly, this one may be possible Fridge Brilliance considering the World Government loves to keep everyone, even those sworn to uphold their rule, in the dark about what it's doing – they covered up the events of the Alabasta Arc even as they silently tripled Luffy's bounty (they later did the exact same thing after the Straw Hats' raid on Enies Lobby), and they like to make particularly dangerous criminals disappear without a trace. It's not beyond reason that Smoker said Mr.1 had been "killed" simply because he didn't know Zoro hadn't done so.
- A translation-induced plot hole: After Whiskey Peak, when Miss All-Sunday gives the Straw Hats an eternal pose (which they immediately destroy), she states it points to "Nanimonaishima", which is also what it says on the pose itself. Good for Funimation for keeping true to the original dialogue and on-screen text, right? Well... about a dozen or so episodes later, as the Straw Hats are preparing to leave Little Garden, they run into a massive goldfish known as the Island Eater. The Elbaf Giants, just before they make sushi of the fish, recount a story – which was, amusingly, one of the "fibs" Usopp told way back in his introductory arc – that as big as the Island Eater is, its poop was even bigger; indeed, the Giants once mistook its floating waste for an island called (what was it?) "Nothing-At-All Island!". So what did the preceding sentences have to do with each other? Answer: If you know Japanese (or read Viz's manga, or saw the fansub), you'd know that "Nothing-At-All Island" is the literal translation of Nanimonaishima† . Shame that Funi's otherwise-stellar translation screwed up what was a really good Brick Joke.
- Yu-Gi-Oh!: Any scene that uses the dub phrase "Shadow Realm". Especially dubious, given the ways you can apparently get there (having your legs sliced off, falling through a roof, losing all your Life Energy, making a Heroic Sacrifice, etc.) and that it's actually its own separate term within the universe.
- Kaiba's difficulty in translating The Winged Dragon of Ra's effects certainly qualifies. In the original manga and anime, every character who summons the Winged Dragon has to recite a hieratic text in the process, so Kaiba runs a rapid computer translation effort, in an attempt to figure out what the card does and how to properly use it. In the dub, however, characters summoning the monster simply have to recite a rhyming poem, and Kaiba STILL has to run his desperate translation. There was a blink-and-you'll-miss-it handwave that there was more than just the chant printed on the card, and that extra stuff was what Kaiba was trying to translate.
- It's implied that what Marik recited was the translated version of the chant which is written in hieratic. Kaiba could have tried to memorize it as Marik was reciting it or record it, but it's not that much of a plot hole.
- There's also the matter of the name of Yugi's alter-ego. In the original, he was called "Yami no Yugi" (among other nicknames), meaning "Dark Yugi". Some dub media referred to him as the shortened version "Yami Yugi", and the dub itself took "Yami" and treated it as the character's proper name for season two, with several characters using it. This caused problems because the final season has them searching for his true name "Atem". This was also the case in Latin America. His name was always "Yami Yugi". They attempted an Author's Saving Throw and failed miserably by removing all mention of "Yami" as his name in the third season and having them go back to saying they don't know who he really is. In season three he's mostly just called "pharaoh" or "Yugi" for the sake of convenience.
- Worse was when Yami Yugi first said his name to be "Yami", he also said "I've been called many names. Pharaoh, Yu-Gi-Oh, Yami..." Notice "Pharaoh" as one of the names he gave. Then in the next season, he is shocked to learn that he's the spirit of an ancient pharaoh!
- There's also the matter of Marik and Yami Marik's motivations. In the manga and original dub, Marik was under the mistaken impression that the Pharaoh had murdered his father which, combined with resentment over having to become a tombkeeper, drove him to attempt to humiliate and kill the Pharaoh. He steals the Egyptian God Cards mostly because he knows the Pharaoh will need them. In the dub, his constant attempts to defeat Yugi are so he can win an unspecified "power of the Pharaoh" (which is apparently held by the God Cards and the Millennium Puzzle) which he can use to take over the world. In the original, Yami Marik (as a Split Personality brought on by Marik's abuse and resentment) has no greater goal then causing as much pain, death and destruction as possible, with a special hatred for the Pharaoh. In the dub... his goal is pretty much exactly the same as Marik's, he's just a bit meaner about achieving it.
- This is especially painful during the 4-part duel between Yugi and the brainwashed Joey, where Yugi tries to snap Joey out of brainwashing by giving him the Millenium Puzzle. This would be very confounding to audiences outside of Japan.
- While it's not as bad as with Blair below, Rebecca's character makes a bit more sense when you realize she's supposed to be twelve and not eight years old.
- Although ridiculous, 4Kids' death cover ups were usually convincing (as in, "if someone didn't know about the original version, they could be fooled"). There were exceptions though; the most egregious was Alister's (Amelda) little brother's fate. In the original version, he was killed in a war, and so Amelda blamed the Kaiba Corp, who created the tank who killed him, so he's out for revenge. In the dub, his brother was merely "captured" by the KC. Now, that generates a number of questions that are never answered: 1)What would a weapons developing company want with a random boy? (and yes, the possible answers to that question are more creepy than the concept of death); 2)When Seto took over the company and converted it to a game developing one, wouldn't he... y'know... free the kid? 3)If he's merely "captured", why does his ghost still show up in the season finale?note . Nothing is really explained, and almost any viewer paying the slightest attention could see through. The same applies to Raphael's suddenly neglectful family.
- This happens across arcs in the dub. In the dub version of Duelist Kingdom, Dark Bakura says that, on account of Bakura's "betrayal", he's going after Mokuba in order to get a body without a soul to inhabit. In the original, he explains that he wants Mokuba for pretty much the same reason as Pegasus: to get the secret information about Kaiba Corp that Seto had entrusted to Mokuba. This only becomes a problem during the Battle City arc, where Dark Bakura puts himself in danger in order to protect regular Bakura's body. The original clearly implies that he can only use Bakura as his host, while the dub makes his actions pretty nonsensical...though it did provide a lot of fuel for Shipping.
- Likewise, Yu-Gi-Oh! GX has developed to tendency to make dialogue changes while leaving any corresponding original visuals completely unaltered, so this is probably Executive Meddling:
- The constant rain motif in Ed's flashbacks in the second season is always seen at his father's grave, and thus was edited out. Thus the re-use of the motif in Ed's mental conversation with Saiou while he's dueling him seems a little random.
- When the cast is sent to the world of Duel Monsters in Season 3, they find out that anyone who loses a duel there dies. However, 4Kids replaced death with a vague description about how the loser was "sent to the stars". This makes the reveal at the end of the season (everyone was trapped in a pocket dimension) basically pointless.
- Blair's age was lowered from twelve to eight, an age she definitely didn't look — especially when she hit a growth spurt between appearances. An Author's Saving Throw was actually made by not bringing the age up on the second go-round. Didn't work.
- In the Japanese, the Blue-Eyes White Dragon's attack has always been called "Burst Stream of Destruction." In English, it was instead given the name "White Lightning." Not a big problem, until Judai faces Kaibaman, and he uses the card called Burst Stream of Destruction. In both languages, a mention of the card having the same name as the Blue Eyes' attack is made as Kaibaman uses the card, which seems completely out of the blue in the English translation, since the Blue Eyes' attack is still being called "White Lightning."
- This only adds trouble when Thief King Bakura of the Millenium World's Diabound is said to have an attack of the exact same name.
- In Jaden's duel with Viper, his dialogue at one point does not match the actual cards he's fusing and summoning.
- Not dubbing the fourth season seemed like an acceptable idea at the time... until the tenth anniversary movie came along, and Judai was in it. They also didn't dub the episode where Judai returns - in their version, he doesn't come back from the Dark World. They never address why Jaden is back, why his character design has changed, why he's Walking the Earth with Yubel, Pharaoh, and Banner, why he has darkness powers, or why he seems to know Yugi.
- Yu-Gi-Oh! 5Ds has the dub treat Jack's current motorbike and the one he stole from Yusei as one and the same - but they recently showed a flashback to the theft, completely ignoring the fact that the two bikes look nothing alike.
- The 5Ds dub also had Rex Goodwin claim to be the fifth Signer, even before his identity had been revealed in the original. It turned out that Rudger Godwin was originally the 5th Signer, and after intentionally losing his duel with Rudger, Rex took Rudger's arm and replaced his artificial arm with it, in effect making him both a Signer and a Dark Signer.
- Of course, as soon as the Dark Signer arc started, the dub had Rex backpedal and say "I don't know who the fifth Signer is, but..."
- Not to mention saying that Yusei's mark was the dragon's head (thus ruining the dramatic switch at the end of the season), turning Jack's wings into the left wing (where was the right gonna come from?) and having Godwin talk about how he was gonna use the Crimson Dragon to take over the world! Wait wha-?!
- The second episode dub has Yusei's True Companions constantly remarking about how some crippling fear of bugs must be making him too scared to fight against his opponent's Insect Deck... all while The Stoic hero is facing said insect monsters as calm, silent and fearless as ever. Yeah...
- The dub of Episode 26 manages to make a rather MAJOR one right at the start. The beginning of the episode is replaced by their "Now let's get up to speed with Yu-Gi-Oh! 5D's!" recap. Said beginning of the episode in Japanese shows Red Demon's Dragon destroying Junk Warrior, Yusei's Life Points dropping to 1900 from the attack, and Jack placing 3 cards face down. The English episode starts from after the title card in the Japanese version, making confused viewers wonder where Yusei's monster went to, why he's down a few hundred LP and where Jack's face downs came from.
- Just recently 4Kids seems to have skipped a few episodes after the Yusei vs. Primo to get right into the 5Ds vs. Ragnarok team duel. Not too big of problem, except that means Jack's Red Nova Dragon has NO explanation behind it and seemingly comes out of nowhere. Not to mention Jack sounds weird with his summoning speech about having a Burning Soul. Whoops. These episodes are available subbed on Hulu, however.
- 4Kids skipped all of Season 5 (the Ark Cradle) in favor of starting ZEXAL, which means that fans won't learn of Bruno's identity, history and everything that happens in the real final battle. Zone's plot will also be left hanging.
- In Tokyo Mew Mew, Masaya chases Ichigo, who is running away in fear that her Secret Identity has been exposed. He finally stops her by calling her by her first name instead of her last. In the dub, however, he'd always called her by her first name, so she just stops for no apparent reason.
- And Bu-ling/Pudding/Kikki lives in a shelter now because she can't live alone... until they show an episode with her house. Even though it is explained in the dub by Minto/Mint/Corina that they had made a mistake in thinking that she lives in a shelter, it was still blatantly obvious that the writers only saw a few episodes at a time and didn't sit down and watch the entire show.
- In the episode Zakuro joins the team, Quiche demanded that she and Ichigo fought, and the winner would be allowed to join him and maybe save the other Mew Mews. In the dub, Dren only says that if they fought the other girls would be saved, omitting the "joining him" thing. Which wouldn't be a problem, except later in the episode he references that proposal anyway.
- End of Evangelion has Misato explain her findings on the Second Impact to Shinji when she transports him to Unit-01, saying how humans were spawned from the progenitor entity Lilith. However, she incorrectly states that Adam was also born from Lilith, where Adam and Lilith were actually unrelated, having been two separate progenitor entities that happened to land on the same planet. It's still no easier to grasp the concept, though.
- In the Sonic X dub, when Eggman's base explodes as a result of Chaos Control, Amy asks, "What is that?" leading Knuckles to reply, "It used to be Chaos Control.". In the original Japanese, he just says "Chaos Control...". The original is referring to Chaos Control as the power of the emeralds, but the dub seems to use it as the name of Eggman's base.
- This mistake pops up again. When Eggman tries to convince Knuckles that Sonic is evil, during a flashback, he talks about how Sonic attacked, invaded, and destroyed Chaos Control, as his base goes by on screen. The first can be excused by having it be be the effects of a warped/subverted form of Chaos Control, this example makes much less sense.
- This also pops up during the Sonic Adventure 2 adaption arc. In the original dub (And the game the story arc is based on,) the Arc incident involved lots of scientists being killed and imprisoned(To be executed later) when G.U.N. stormed the arc and shut down research. While they obviously can't have something as graphic as that go unchanged, they ended up switching the story to "The project was shut down and everyone went home." This immediately starts screwing with the plot, as they had a difficult time hunting down ONE scientist from the project, and he was scared to death of discussing it. This also screws with Shadow and Maria's story, as she's "Taken away" rather than killed, making Shadow's motivations and actions in response a lot more nonsensical.
- Digimon: The Movie is rife with these, as it compressed three Japanese Digimon films haphazardly into one for American audiences.
- In Digimon Adventure, with their handling of the living situation of Matt and TK (divorced parents, Matt lives with their father, TK with their mother). The first dub mention of this claimed that Matt and TK were "half-brothers". It later changed to them being full brothers whose parents were divorced (correct), but went on to add that Matt lived with their mother and thus TK would live with their father. Come their return to the real world, the inverse was proven to be true.
- In an early episode of Digimon Adventure's English dub, Mimi says that she's starting to miss her little brother. Later on when they get home, she is shown to be an only child.
- In the original version, Wizardmon and Tailmon sneak into Vamdemon's hideout to recover the Crest of Light from his coffin, with Wizardmon stashing it in his clothes when Vamdemon returns, realizes what they're doing, and crushes the fake Crest that he was holding in anger. In the dub, Myotismon claims that the Crest in the coffin is another fake, and that he kept the real one on him. This might make Myotismon seem more Dangerously Genre Savvy, but he still crushes the Crest he's holding, and it's never seen how Wizardmon got a hold of the real one.
- The dub also paved the way to break some future Theme Naming, though they couldn't necessarily have seen it coming at the time. Omegamon, the Jogressed form of Taichi and Yamato's partners WarGreymon and MetalGarurumon, was dubbed as "Omnimon" in the second Digimon Adventure film when he appeared. A couple of years later, Alphamon was introduced (as in "the alpha and the omega"), and both he and Omegamon were added to the Royal Knights group. They appeared together in Digimon World Dawn/Dusk, where in reference to the Theme Naming they were always Finishing Each Other's Sentences. Obviously it makes sense with "Alphamon" and "Omegamon", but with "Alphamon" and "Omnimon"... not so much. Later, in Digimon Xros Wars, Omegamon is partially responsible for enabling Shoutmon to be able to evolve to OmegaShoutmon, who has a clear omega theme going on. The American dub, Digimon Fusion, changes Omegamon to Omnimon as usual, and ends up calling Shoutmon's new form OmniShoutmon, which unfortunately renders the omega symbols meaningless.
- Adventure has a doozy in episode 28, where Koushiro/Izzy is trying to open a gateway to another world by finding the right order to place Digimon cards in. Not only does he classify the evolutionary levels wrong (calling them In-Training, Rookie and Champion instead of Rookie, Champion and Ultimate), he completely mixes up the classification (Data, Virus and Vaccine, as represented by respective pictures of Centarumon, Etemon and Leomon – he calls Centarumon a Virus, Etemon a Vaccine and Leomon a Data).
- The Digimon Adventure 02 dub accidentally turned Jou's two brothers, Shin and Shuu, into Joe's one brother, Jim. After the writing staff were replaced, both brothers appeared in the same scene and no reference was made.
- In Digimon Tamers, when Leomon dies, he tells Juri that maybe his death was his "destiny". This leads Juri to become traumatized (and somewhat obsessed, after the D-Reaper thing) by the word "destiny". In the dub, Leomon's last line is telling Jeri that she has a lion's heart. Since most of the later episodes were written by different people, Jeri still mentions multiple times "when Leomon told me about how that was his destiny", even though it also repeatedly flashes back to the scene and replays the "lion's heart" quote unmodified. Unless you assume that took place offscreen (which is a pretty cheap way to introduce a plot point), the whole thing was kinda messy.
- The German dub gave Renamon a male voice. Initially, it's not much of a problem, since Digimon have technically no gender. Ruki's comment of Renamon being beautiful can be interpreted as innocent, but it makes it a bit flamboyant. However, since Renamon's Perfect/Mega Level looks definitely female, Sakuyamon gets an own voice actress. And later in a dinner scene, when Ruki's mother asked Renamon about the genders of Digimon, Renamon answered that only some exception have something like a gender, and Ruki's mother commented that Renamon appears to be female, despite its obvious male voice.
- For some reason, the German dub of Digimon Frontier made all Holy Four Angel Digimon female and gave all of them female voice actors. But Patamon, the weaker and reborn version of Seraphimon, had the same male voice as the Patamon from Adventures.
- The German dub of Digimon Savers gave some of the Digimon their Japanese names, despite some of them had the Western names from previous series. Most notably are the members of the Royal Knights.
- The Pokémon anime has Brock(/Takeshi)'s mother running away, which was actually edited up to her death (as 4Kids felt that Brock having both of his parents abandon him was too sad). Since the episode she appears in happens much later in the show (and because 4Kids thought the concept of death was worse than being away for a while), it was pretty much ignored.
- Let's not forget Ash's 30 Tauros that apparently came out of nowhere! This is due to the episode where Ash got the Tauros being skipped for having a large presence of realistic firearms being pointed at the protagonists.
- "And the world will turn to... ash.". The problem is, some Latin American viewers might not know enough English to know that Ash Ketchum's first name means "ceniza", prompting the Latin American voices to explain this to the audience. They obviously only got rights to the English script through 4Kids, turning a Woolseyism that worked in English into a Dub-Induced Plot Hole.
- The Finnish dub (also dubbed from the 4Kids version) does the same thing. but the bigger problem was that the prophecy's ambiguity could not be preserved. In Finnish, the world will either become ash, or look to Ash for help and there's no way to construct a sentence that can be read both ways. The dubbers went with "become ash", and acted as though the second meaning was still there.
- The Italian dub refers to any Pokémon with male pronouns. Then some Pokémon are stated to be female. The result is that Ash's Snivy becomes a female when using Attract, and is referred as a male every other time. Same for Iris's Emolga.
- From YuYu Hakusho. In the Filipino dub, Bishounen Kurama was changed into a girl and called Denise. He was given a female voice actor and everything. This actually worked, up until an episode where Kurama has to take off his shirt. The dubbers handwaved this, saying that Kurama was really a male demon who was only pretending to be female on earth. Oops.
- Also, Genkai was a man in the dub.
- The English dub has a few smaller ones:
- The name "Spirit Wave" is given to two different techniques—the chant used by the Masked Fighter to purify Dr. Ichigaki's brainwashed fighters, and the Reikodan, used by Yusuke against Jin.
- During Kurama's fight against Ura Urashima, the character's false story is changed from him wanting to repent from a team formed by negative feelings involving the fairy tales they're based off of, to the team forcing him to fight by holding his grandmother hostage. But when he's spilling information to Yoko Kurama, he says "I'm not even Ura Urashima!" It's supposed to be him admitting his entire explanation was false and they were just hired goons, but with the changed story, the line makes no sense.
- When Yusuke starts his fight against Sensui, he admits that he doesn't really care about the portal to Demon Realm opening or not—all he wants is to fight Yusuke. This is Foreshadowing of his true desire. The dub changes this to him telling Yusuke that he could become just like him. Later, however, Yusuke references the original line, echoing that all he cares about is fighting Sensui.
- When Naruto defeats Neji in the English dub, he tells Neji that he could never get the shadow clone jutsu right in order to graduate from the academy. This is a mistake; academy students had to perform the clone jutsu to pass, not the shadow clone jutsu. Besides, the shadow clone jutsu is a jonin-level technique, and when he learned it, Naruto complained about it being a harder version of the jutsu he couldn't master.
- There's a more noticeable one in a filler episode special. Sakura says it's celebrating the show's fourth anniversary, which she also says in the dub... but because the dub aired episodes slightly faster (for a long time there was two episodes a week) it had been just over three years since it began American broadcast.
- Another minor one occurs during the final battle of the Wave Country Arc: Haku has Naruto and Sasuke trapped in the Demonic Ice Mirrors and turns both of them into living pin cushions. Some of the needles sticking out of their bodies were edited out for the TV version, including all the ones in their necks. However, when Sasuke wakes up from his Disney Death, there's still a scene of his pulling a needle out of his neck.
- In the German version, nobody is allowed to say "tot". Because of this the viewers never learn that Sasuke's clan was killed, which makes his whole character development and motivation non-understandable.
- In the Spanish dub of Rurouni Kenshin, the translators made some really random changes to the names of characters and places. This includes changing the location of the whole Tokyo Arc to Kyoto, making for some really confusing moments (in the expository voiceover that opens the Steam Locomotive episode, Kaoru's voice actress explains the train run from Tokyo to Yokohama. They proceed to take the train... even though we've been told they were in Kyoto). When later in the series the action moves to Kyoto, they decided to call it "Edo", despite that just being an older name for Tokyo.
- It's made even more confusing by the fact that they seemed to forget to change the names of the places once in a while, and as a result, when Kaoru and Yahiko leave in the steam boat, they mention they're leaving for Kyoto. Despite supposedly being there already.
- Also, they changed the names of the little girls from Suzume and Ayame to "Suzi" (pronounced in a weird, distinctively non-Spanish way) and "Yumi". Naturally, later on, they had to rename Yumi Komagata "Ayumi".
- The Brazilian dub has a similar problem, but a little worse: Tokyo, Edo, Kyoto and "Ayoya" (originally Aoi-ya) are used randomly, often being treated as if they were same thing (even the last one, which isn't even a city).
- In the English dub of the 5th episode of Trigun, while running from an entire town's population trying to capture him for his bounty, Vash says "Until I find this man you're looking for, I have no choice but to keep moving!" This response makes no sense in any context, considering that Vash is the man they're looking for. The official subtitles (and Dark Horse's translation of the manga) render this as "Until I see HIM again...", having Vash referring to his brother and series Big Bad, Knives. Vash's line can also be translated as, "Until I find the man I'm looking for...".
- Due to episode shuffling, the Cardcaptors dub of Cardcaptor Sakura had Kero advising Sakura to use Windy, Fly, and Shadow to capture the Watery card because they were her oldest cards. In the actual anime, those were the only cards she had at the time. Even worse, an episode aired earlier showed Sakura as already possessing Watery. Continuity is for losers, yo.
- The episode with Sakura's doppelganger had Sakura use her captured Clow Cards to identify its nature. The card symbolizing what it was seeking was The Flower. This was intended to refer to her brother Toya, whose name meant "peach blossom", but his Dub Name Change to Tori meant Sakura somehow deduced this from a mere screenshot of Tori standing among cherry blossoms.
- The Spanish translation for the Hayate the Combat Butler manga removes all mentions of White Day (Or of there being a holiday like that) on the White Day Arc, making it go from a standard High School plot to a random "let's return the St. Valentine chocolate for no reason" story. It becomes frustrating when you consider the same translator added a long explanation on Teru Teru Bouzu on another manga... where they get a 2-panel appearance for a quick joke. Those are some strange priorities.
- In Higurashi no Naku Koro ni, the game club members often play Old Geezer. The English dub changes this to Old Maid, presumably because Western audiences are more likely to be familiar with the rules. It is unfortunate, then, that an important part of the climax of the second season is a speech about why it's so metaphorically significant that they play Old Geezer rather than Old Maid. One wonders how the dubbers will deal with that if Higurashi Kai is ever brought over.
- In Pokémon Special, it is far more common to give your Pokemon nicknames. In the first arc of Pokemon Adventures, nicknames were all but ignored. This made a problem in the second arc, as Red's Pikachu, Pika, now with an expanded role, seems to have suddenly gotten one out of nowhere and everyone acted like it always had one. What more, Inconsistent Dub is in full effect, as Red's other Pokémon still aren't called by their nicknames and Yellow keeps switching from using her Pokémon's real names and nicknames. Even Pika.
- In the first Johto arc of Pokémon Special, Crys is slapped across the face by her mother after breaking down because she can't capture like she used to. Pokémon Adventures changes this to a firm glare, yet leaves in the shocked expressions on the faces of Crys's Pokemon, Crys's shaking and her holding her face a few panels later. It makes no attempt to explain why Kris is holding her cheek after being glared at.
- Great Balls have a tiny "S" stamped on them, while Ultra Balls have a large yellow "H". This is because the items are called "Super" and "Hyper" respectively in the original Japanese games.
- The day the Sinnoh Trio start their journey together is September 28th, the day the Diamond and Pearl games were released in Japan. The Viz translators caught on the reference and changed the date to April 22nd, the day the games were released in America. Unfortunately, winter is approaching Sinnoh, necessitating the change into the Platinum outfits. Apparently in Sinnoh, it starts snowing in May.
- Hokkaido, which is what Sinnoh is based off of, does have absurdly long winters, but May is still pushing it.
- Somewere between volumes 4 and 5 of the Tokyopop edition of the Togainu no Chi manga, the translators noticed that the character they'd been calling "Nicole Prumier" was actually supposed to be "Nicole Premier". Since this was plot-relevant, they had to change it midstory.
- In the first series of Tenchi Muyo! OVAs, Ridiculously Cute Critter Ryo-Ohki is referred to as male in both the dubs and subtitles (no gender-specific pronouns are actually used in the Japanese dialogue, however). In the second series, she acquires a humanoid body which is clearly female, so the dub and subs shift to referring to her as female. There is also a mistake in the early episodes, again in both the dub and subtitles, where Tenchi refers to a woman as "grandma", who is later revealed to be his mother (the audio is not very clear in the scene in question, the woman has grey hair, and given that the Japanese words for "mother" and "grandmother" are very similar-sounding, it's understandable how this error occurred). None of these errors were corrected in later releases of the show, despite the voice cast being hired again to re-record some lines for the censored TV version.
- The Toonami broadcast has a (quite minor) plot hole in episode seven as we're shown where everyone is that isn't the dinner table with Sasami's hard-cooked meal... except for Mihoshi. A cut scene revealed Mihoshi's location - dropping in on Tenchi and Washu "playing" "nurse". Against his will.
- Outlaw Star doesn't have these in its uncut dub. In the heavily-edited Toonami broadcast, however...
- In Episode 7, "Creeping Evil": Near the end of the episode, Gene gets hit in the back by a Pirate's "blaster". Back on board the Outlaw Star, Jim puts his hand on Gene's back and (originally) exclaims "What the hell is this?!" at the sight of blood on his hand. Lots of it. But the Toonami edit digitally removed the blood, turning the "Oh shit! Gene's bleeding to death!" moment into "Oh shit! I have a hand!" Equally inexplicably, Jim clearly says "hell"; future reruns changed it to "heck", but Jim's still freaked out by his palm. No way the folks in charge of the Toonami edit realize how nonsensical the edits worked out.
- Due to an excessive amount of fanservice and other questionable material, they removed an entire Hot Springs Episode from the Toonami run (editing it to what Standards & Practices required of them would have resulted in an episode clocking in at under 15 minutes, and a lot of digital paint; suffice to say it wasn't cost effective to even try). The problem is that the episode in question wasn't filler; it involved Gene collecting difficult-to-find Caster shells, including some exceptionally rare ones that nobody knew actually still existed. The following episode opens with Gene sorting the shells out and mentioning off-hand how he got them, but the whole thing becomes a Noodle Incident with how they acquired this major Chekhov's Gun for the final episodes.
- Back when Saban's name was still attached to Dragon Ball Z, great pains were taken to remove any references to civilian death.
- For example, the original dub went out of its way to avoid admitting that Freeza and his men were killing the Namekians by removing bodies onscreen, cutting scenes of the killings as well as one of Gohan burying one village, editing the dialogue to refer to them as though they were still alive and adding random grunts and moans whenever a pile of dead Namekian corpses were onscreen. They didn't even bother with the usual "another dimension" explanation; they simply pretended that the Namekians weren't dead. This doesn't become so much of a plothole until they finally get around to wishing all of those killed by Freeza back to life.
- According to the dub of the Android arc, Dr. Gero was the leader of the Red Ribbon Army who Goku had apparently spared long ago and "General" Tao wanted nothing more than world domination. The Red Ribbon Army was led by Commander Red. Goku never met Gero in his childhood and Tao Pai Pai was a mercenary that couldn't care less about world domination. When they later dubbed Dragon Ball, they didn't even attempt to Hand Wave this, instead ignoring it completely.
- How Cell regenerates may be an inversion. In the Japanese version, as he comes back from an complete incineration, he says a special nerve in his head allows him to regenerate and if that nerve survives he can regenerate completely. The problem here is that in a previous attack made by Goku, Cell's upper body and head was blew off and he still regenerated. The dub worked around this by having him say he regenerates even if there's but a single cell in his body, because each one has a life of their own.
- Likewise inverted in the Dragon Ball dub, which attempts to make the retcon of King Piccolo and his spawn being aliens, rather than demons, less blatant by changing all references to them as demons to more vague terms such as "Piccolo's tribe".
However, this leads to a straight example when King Piccolo says he's seen warriors from all over the universe, when it would later be established the Namekian who would become Kami and Piccolo only lived on Namek until a young age before coming to Earth and never leaving.
- Also in the dub of Dragon Ball, the scene where Goku accidentally agrees to marry Chichi, something she would end up coming back to take him up on at the 23rd Martial Arts tournament, was changed to just Chichi asking Goku if he'd be thinking about her. This was corrected for the most part by having Goku instead make a similar promise in a Red Ribbon Army Arc filler episode where he sees Chichi and Ox King again ("What about the wedding?" "I'll come back for some of that later!"), but when Chichi reminds him of it at the tournament the flashback is still to the original scene for no apparent reason.
- The French dub (and all the ones that spawned from it) has this in spades, because of how terrible it was. An example? They never call Vegeta or Freeza by name during a lot of episodes, until they suddenly do and Krillin knows both of their names because... he just does. Until then, Freeza was "the tyrant" and every other bad guy was "the enemy" (they were still called that for the whole Namek arc). Talk about confusing...
- The same goes for the name Kakarot, Goku's original birth name, which Vegeta always uses to refers to him. In the French dub, everybody calls him "Songoku" at all times, Vegeta included. That is until one episode, in which Vegeta randomly starts mentioning the name "Cachalote". After that, it's back to calling him Songoku again. Also, the less said about the amazing inconsistencies regarding the names and properties of the attacks and techniques the characters use, the better.
- According to the French dub, Goku has no idea what a "Genki Ball" (Genki Dama in the original or Spirit Bomb in English versions) is until Vegeta tells him during their fight with Buu. Except that he has used it several times in the series (and movies) by that point. The dub also had problems with the Kaio-Ken attack and what it does – for instance, when Goku first reaches the Super Saiyan stage, he claims he has been empowered by King Kai, which is what the dub interpreted the Kaio-Ken technique as.
- The word "Android" was used in place of a more ambiguous Japanese word meaning "artificial human". The English dub initially changed 17 and 18 from human cyborgs to purely machine, but reversed it when they realized that in later episodes, Krillin and 18 had a daughter.
- One of the more infamous scenes in the early dub involved Vegeta explaining to Goku that his father Bardock, a warrior, was actually "a scientist" and that he was the one who invented the artificial moon a Saiyan can use to transform into Ape form even when an actual moon is not present. When Bardock later appeared in flashback, both Funimation and the Ocean Group in their respective handling of the show decided to leave that new addition completely unaddressed and instead Vegeta's previous exposition never existed.
- The fifth episode of the original anime has Bulma lose her Hoi-Poi capsules. In the Japanese version, she simply drops them in the river, while in the English dub, she accuses Oolong of stealing them, which he doesn't deny. This leads to the obvious question of why Bulma simply doesn't search him and get them back.
- In the Hungarian dub, during the Garlic Jr. Saga (or Garbig, as the dub calls him), Gohan is stated to be 5 years old. That cannot be, as he was 4 at the start of the series, and several years have explicitly passed since then. This may or may not have been the result of working with the confusing French script.
- Two other examples from the French dub: the Snake Way is said to be 100 km long instead of a million. Thus it comes off as bizarre that it takes Goku months to traverse it. In another scene, Vegeta claims that the "Space Warriors" (Saiyans) can take on any form they want under moonlight. Actually, they become giant apes when exposed to it.
- The dub of Vision of Escaflowne has a character mention in the second episode that Zaibach are the ones attacking Fanelia. However, we aren't supposed to know it's them until episode 3, and even in the dub, everyone's supposed to be surprised when they find out Zaibach did it.
- Medabots had a couple of these:
- Medabots suffered an awful reshuffle of episodes. Actually, for the first "season" the company skipped the episodes that it considered uninteresting, only to insert them as the first episodes of "season 2". The problem here was that in the end of season 1 Ikki and Metabee had only a week before the International Robattle Championship, but it only started 14 episodes after said announcement. The dub could have solved the matter by simply saying that it was delayed, but it didn't.
- In the same reshuffling, Rokusho shows up in many of the first episodes of "Season 2", regardless of the fact that he had a dramatic goodbye in "Season 1" to find his reason of living. No one seems to be even a little surprised to see him again.
- Two different episodes have Ikki battling a member of the Rubberobo Gang under the latter's true identity. The first match ended up being cut while the second has him mention that they'd already battled once.
- A more straightforward and non-related to episode shuffling case was Metabee's naming. In the first episode, after getting his Medabot, Ikki named him Metabee. Some 50 episodes later, someone comments that the Medabot responsible for a horrible incident was also named Metabee - then Ikki rushes to the store saying that it was Henry, co-worker in said store, who named Metabee (cue a flashback with altered dialogue).
- The Scandinavian dubs of Ginga Nagareboshi Gin contain massive plotholes because a lot of the violence was cut (mostly character deaths), as well as numerous plot-important scenes with no violence whatsoever. The show never was dubbed into English despite many rumors suggesting it would – and likely with similar massive cuts.
- Most obvious must be the final episode. Here, Akakabuto dies from being shot by Gohei. Gin's father is seen being completely OK all this time, even watching over now dead Akakabuto. Suddenly, he's dying from massive wounds... it was very confusing to watch as a child. Additionally, Ben's voice in the Finnish dub changes early on, and his original voice later makes a comeback as Moss. Also, Smith changes his voice AND sex midway through the dub.
- Then there's Benizakura, who was introduced as the strongest dog in the world and whose recruitment to the cause was a big deal. His death, a heroic sacrifice in which he ensured the death of one of the Big Bad's strongest underlings, and the fight leading to it were completely cut. However, they left in a bit later where another dog's thoughts briefly turn to Benizakura not being with them any longer, but doesn't go into detail about what happened to him. Such an important warrior just vanishing without a trace was confusing to say the least.
- Transformers has on occasion managed to simultaneously play this trope straight and invert it.
- In Headmasters, Scorponok manages to blow up both Mars and Cybertron. In the English dub of the final episode, Fortress Maximus mentions that they can rebuild Mars, a line which wasn't in the Japanese version. In Victory, which is set about 15 years later, Earth apparently has a massive mining operation on Mars - but if Mars could be rebuilt, why does nobody ever mention Cybertron?
- In Galaxy Force, a mysterious black hole appears next to Cybertron and sucks the planet in; however, in later episodes, characters walk around on the surface without difficulty. When it was redubbed into Cybertron, the situation was changed to Cybertron just being perilously close to the black hole. Unfortunately, the translators also decided that the black hole was formed from the death of Unicron at the end of Energon, making Cybertron a sequel, while in the Japanese continuity it was unconnected to any previous seriesnote . This meant a lot of canonically dead characters suddenly appeared alive and well (explained as a result of the Unicron Singularity messing with the space-time continuum) and the Autobots not being familiar with combination, despite the fact that this was a frequent occurrence in Energon.
- The English dub of Stitch! tries shoehorning it to the original Lilo & Stitch continuity by lines explaining Stitch left out of jealousy of a new boyfriend of Lilo's. What the hell happened to Ohana?
- Since then, the series has been turned into a full Time Skip series of the franchise, with Lilo having gone to college being responsible for Stitch leaving, and the two reuniting years later where Lilo is now a mother with an identical looking child.
- In the first English adaptation of Science Ninja Team Gatchaman, known as Battle of the Planets, the producers were sent episodes of the anime out of their natural order and decided to dub and translate them as they came. However, this method of dubbing produced quite the plot holes, especially when it came time for them to adapt certain other episodes. Whether you watch this version in Sandy Frank's suggested order or the original Gatchaman order, things just do NOT add up either way. Especially if you're Mark's "friend"/mentor/father Colonel Cronus and they can't decide if you're alive, dead, or the circumstances of your death.
- Saban's attempt at dubbing both Gatchaman sequels as Eagle Riders created its own plot hole: The villain "Mallanox" (originally the female Gel Sadra) was said to be a man and an alien specifically created/summoned by the Big Bad "Cybercon" (Leader X), with their original backstory cut due to the violence involved in it. Then it was said that he was the son of an alien named "Lukan" (originally Gatchaman's Berg Katse) and a human woman. Then as Saban realized that cutting Gel Sadra's backstory was coming back to bite them, they attempted to reinstate it and Hand Wave Mallanox as actually being a woman with simply a manly voice when in costume (and the daughter of a female professor and her husband, the latter who was killed in the ship bombing she was kidnapped in). Then when it came time for Gel Sadra to die and Go Out with a Smile, Saban instead changed the dialogue of the scene to suggest that Cybercon still had control over Mallanox and was transforming him/her for their failure...into the villain of Gatchaman Fighter (Count Egobossler). Who they proceeded to rename Happy Boy.
- The Hellsing manga states that nobody knows where Church Militant Alexander Anderson is from. The English anime dub opened a hole by giving him a very obvious Scottish accent (the voice actor was from Dundee and only slightly exaggerated his natural brogue), making it sound like those who say this never met anyone who hadn't grown up more than ten miles away from them.
- The official English translation of the manga gives Anderson pretty much the same accent, or at least as can best be approximated in text.
- In episode 44 of Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood, Bido recognizes the reincarnated Greed by his voice. In the dub, the second Greed has a different voice actor than the first and the two sound almost nothing alike. This could be justified in that Bido recognizes the second Greed through his Ultimate Shield and catchphrase note
- From the ending episode of the 2003 anime version this gem happens. In Funimation's subtitles Al proclaims that Ed "hasn't been dead for long" before attempting to bring him back; in Funimation's subtitle translation, Al says that Ed "isn't dead yet", as his soul has not passed through the Gate. Therefore, what Al does to bring Ed back is not human transmutation, but rather the equivalent of Ed's retrieval and binding of Al's soul back when they transmuted Sloth. The difference in phrasing may seem minor, but considering the series has just spent the past 50 episodes establishing that bringing back the dead is not only a very bad idea, but not even possible, it's a pretty important distinction to make. Misinterpretation of this scene has led some viewers to conclude that the final episode contains a Broken Aesop. Oddly enough, the second part of the same line contains what appears to be a Plot Hole in the subtitle translation, but was fixed in the dub; Al determines that Ed isn't dead yet because "he's still warm", even though it has already been well established that Al is incapable of tactile sensation. In the dub, he says that "there's still some color in his face", which makes more sense. Whether this is an error in Funimation's subtitle translation or an oversight in the original script is unclear.
- In Yotsuba&!, when Fuuka asks what Yotsuba's adoptive father does, Yotsuba goes and asks him. He says he's a honyakuka, or translator. Yotsuba comes back and calls him a konnyakuka, someone who makes konjac gel. In ADV Manga's version, however, she says he's a "trainspotter". This is all well and good... until 17 chapters later, when Fuuka seems to be under the impression that he knows a lot about konjac for what looks, to readers of ADV's otherwise-superior English translation, to be no apparent reason.
- The last episode of Hamtaro to be dubbed ("Hamtaro: Ham-Ham Games") and aired onto North American television was ACTUALLY a special from at least two seasons ahead of where the series currently was. The special was dubbed to go along with the 2004 Olympics. However this didn't change the fact that there were a TON of new characters that the Ham-Hams just seemed to "know."
- At the end of the Rescue arc of Bleach, as the three traitor captains escaped to Hueco Mundo, Gin Ichimaru originally apologised to Rangiku Matsumoto for an unspecified reason. In the dub, this was changed into him saying 'maybe next time'. The apology turns out to be very important to Gin's character motivations in a later arc.
- Before fighting Yumichika, Hisagi tells him "You'll die either way." A few episodes later, he has apparently defeated Yumichika, and when Yumichika insists on resuming the battle, Hisagi tells him he's beaten, and shows no desire to finish him off.
- Akira of Mai-HiME is actually a cross dressing female. This fact isn't revealed until much later in the series. Someone didn't tell the German dubbers this, as they left her with a distinctly male voice, which made the reveal a tad complicated.
- An odd one occurs in Case Closed where Funimation inserted a line intended to fix an Adaptation-Induced Plot Hole in the original Detective Conan anime by having Harley (Heiji) tip Jimmy (Shinichi) off about Vodka and Gin's codenames, which Conan somehow knows in the original Japanese version a few episodes later despite never having a chance to learn this. By adding this line, Harley implies that he knows the truth about Jimmy being Conan. However, this line creates a plot hole in Harley's next appearance where he clearly has no idea that Conan is Jimmy until figuring it out during that case.
- The English dub of Urotsukidoji: Legend of the Overfiend was heavily cut to secure an NC-17 rating. In one cut scene, the protagonist learned that ingesting the blood or any other bodily fluid of a demon would bring out his hidden power. So in the dub, when he gobbles a demon's man chowder, he seems to do it for no reason.
- In Viz's translation of Fist of the North Star, Shin's martial art style of Nanto Seiken (South Dipper Holy Fist) was renamed the "Sacred Fist of the Southern Cross". This creates a plot hole when Kenshiro infiltrates the Kingsmen's hideout of Southern Cross. It shouldn't take him that long to deduce the identity of the Kingsmen's leader when he named his own city after his martial art school.
- This crops up a few times in Keith Giffen's adaptation of the Battle Royale manga, due to his refusal to even attempt to keep his script anywhere near the translation.
- In Giffen's version, the Program is a reality TV show, based on the logic that if you're going to do something like make kids kill each other you might as well make money off it. A number of times it's alluded to that multiple cameras are on most if not all of the kids around the clock no matter where they are. This breaks the climax of the story, when Kawada fakes killing Noriko and Shuya by staging it in a heavily forested area so that they can't be seen by satellite imaging. You have to do some mental gymnastics to justify the lack of normal cameras in the area.
- Giffen also managed to contradict an element that he himself had invented in the first place. When Kiriyama is shot in the head, his brain damage is partially reversed, causing him to feel emotions for the first time since he was a kid. In the English manga, he also regains his ability to see colors, having been completely colorblind up until then. Previously in the English version, Kiriyama made an off-hand reference to the redness of his victims' blood.
- In Durarara!!, Mikado Ryugamine's name translates to "Emperor of the Dragon's Peak". This causes a lot of people to make fun of him or get weirded out, as they think his name is very strange and pretentious. The English dub does not include the translation, so the English viewers are left scratching their heads over why everybody is making fun of his name, especially since everyone else also has Japanese names.
- Borderline example: In Revolutionary Girl Utena, Nanami spends one episode proudly wearing a cowbell, thinking it's some hip new kind of jewelry because the word "cowbell" in Japanese is simply the English word (kaoberu). The English dub just keeps it that way, and since everyone's speaking English it seems pretty odd that Nanami has to have explained to her "It's a cowbell, as in a bell a cow wears!" Although it still works as a satire of people who wear weird things just because they're from some big designer.
- In the second Ronin Warriors series, there's a scene where one of the main cast wins the lottery. Events transpire such that this member has to spend all of the lottery money buying implements for the cast, and bailing people out of jail. The problem comes in the dub, where it's implied that the person won millions of dollars, and went broke buying a few plane tickets. In the captioning, the situation becomes more clear, as the person only won 3000 or so dollars.
- A minor one occurs at the end of Mobile Suit Gundam Unicorn, when Char's ghost briefly appears before crossing over into the afterlife. In the original Japanese, both Char and Full Frontal were always voiced by Shuichi Ikeda, but in English Frontal was played by Keith Silverstein, not any of the three other men who had portrayed Char in previous Gundam dubs. Despite this, Silverstein still played Char's ghost in Unicorn, which made the scene a bit confusing, seeming like it was Full Frontal's ghost, when the Japanese version seems to imply he doesn't have a soul. This has since been addressed retroactively by casting Silverstein as Char in the Gundam The Origin movie dubs.
- Tintin comics were translated into English out-of-sequence. Translators altered the dialogue to try to give a sense of continuity to the "new" sequence, leading to problems such as characters the heroes already "knew" being introduced. Also, of course, if the books are placed in proper sequence some of the dialogue just doesn't make any sense.
- In Astérix, the Once an Episode phrase explaining Obelix's permanent Super Strength is translated as "he fell into a cauldron of magic potion when he was a baby", probably to play on the old cliché about falling on one's head as a baby. The original phrase is more ambiguous and literally means "he fell into a cauldron of magic potion when he was small". This caused some problem when a book explaining the story of how Obelix fell into the potion was released, showing him as a child of about four or five years old. The translation just forced past this and titled the book How Obelix Fell Into The Magic Potion When He Was A Little Boy.
- In The Big Fight, Obelix and Asterix sing a punny song while carrying a fallen tree. The English translation turned this into a parody of "John Brown's Body", with them singing "Pompey's body lies a-mouldering in the grave" (this seems reasonable, as the comic also shows Julius Caesar as Dictator, suggesting Pompey is dead by this point). Many years later in Asterix and the Actress, Pompey is a very important character, as his attempts to gather supporters to take on Caesar are the whole reason the story happens. He is, of course, alive.
- In Asterix and Obelix's Birthday we see a crossword that joins up ASTERIX and OBELIX with IDEFIX (between the I of Asterix and the X of Obelix). The dog's name was changed to Dogmatix in English, so it was impossible to change the drawing. The clue section is changed to read "Dog's idea" riffing off the literal meaning of 'dogmatics' and 'idée fixe', but it's incredibly tenuous. It would be an excellent cryptic crossword clue in a general setting, though. (It should be noted the English translator is the daughter of a cryptic crossword designer.)
- Also in Birthday a short story involves Getafix teaching Obelix how to read, and showing what the letters stand for: A pour âne (donkey) and B pour biche (doe). While "âne" is perfectly translated as "ass", "biche" is translated as "buck", as neither "doe" nor "deer" begin with a B. The drawing still shows an obviously female deer, even though it could have easily been changed by the addition of antlers.
- In the English translation of Asterix the Gladiator, the pirates remark after their ship sinks that the Gauls never miss the boat, even though this is the first time the pirates appear in the series, and clearly have not met Asterix and Obelix before since they eagerly attacked a ship with them in plain sight.
- In the Latin American dub of Addams Family Values, the joke about Fester's name meaning "rot" is kept even though his name has been changed to Lucas.
- In the Russian dub of RoboCop, the plot-relevant line "You're fired" (which leaves the Big Bad unprotected by the Robocop's directives) was translated as, approximately, "You've got burned up".
- With enough imagination you can interpret it as "You've been compromised".
- Inconsistencies arise between the English dubs of the Godzilla series' Kiryu dualogy, the only two closely linked entries in the Millennium series. In Godzilla Against Mechagodzilla, the English dub states that Mothra was killed during her first appearance on Japanese soil in 1961. Though this contradicts the events of the original film, this particular entry makes use of plenty of past Toho kaiju movies in its canon while altering small details, such as Godzilla's skeleton being left intact by the Oxygen Destroyer. However, Mothra makes an appearance in the next film, Godzilla Tokyo Sos, which is directly tied to the previous film in terms of continuity. Though it's never explicitly stated that this is the same Mothra that appeared in 1961, the dub has everyone talking as if it is, and no reference or explanation is made regarding the previous dub's unambiguous statement that that Mothra was killed. No such inconsistency exists in the Japanese version, suggesting that the Hong Kong company responsible for dubbing these films didn't especially care for either accurate translations (though this is hardly the most egregious example of that) or preserving continuity between films. A smaller issue is that while in the former film, Mechagodzilla is more of a nickname for the Godzilla's robotic arch-rival, while the name "Kiryu" ("metal dragon") is used for the vast majority of references to it. This is the case in both the Japanese and English versions of the film. However, in the dub of the latter film, the superweapon is only referred to as Mehagodzilla, or "Mecha G" for short. No explanation is ever given, nor is the name change ever acknowledge. Again, the Japanese dialogue contains no such contradictions.
- The Lord of the Rings:
- According to the Hungarian dub of the first movie, Saruman apparently perfected fighting against the Uruk-Hai. The dub contained a handful of such bloopers (not all of which got corrected for the DVD), ditto for the second movie, but by the third, the translator finally got just about everything right.
- The Spanish (Spain) dub, at least for the first movie, has a couple of minor ones. For example, when Frodo says Strider would "look fairer and feel fouler" if he was an enemy, the translator seemed to understand "feel fooler". Or Isildur referring to the Ring as "precious to him", echoing Gollum's "my precious"... which was Woolseyized, losing that reference.
- Prince of Space wasn't immune to enemy weapon fire in the original Japanese, but picked this up sometime during the conversion to English. Neatly explains why he keeps dodging. And why Phantom of Krankor keeps ordering his men to shoot him anyway.
- In Transformers: Dark of the Moon, a Decepticon attack separates Optimus Prime from his trailer/weapon cache/flight gear. He exasperatedly demands his flight tech back. In the Hungarian dub, however, he calls for a technician. Yet Que, the Autobot technician, is standing right there! And in the final scene of the movie, when he tries to offer an alliance, Megatron calls Optimus Prime Sentinel Prime. This change of names isn't only erroneous, translating the dialog word-for-word would've been enough — since in the original, Megatron just says "Prime". The context made it clear which Prime he was referring to... not the one he had just shot down, but the one he was facing.
- Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire: When Hermione mentions that the 1792 Triwizard Tournament was cancelled because of a cockatrice breaking free and injuring the judges, the Dutch and Italian editions translate "cockatrice" as "basilisk". But this is impossible, since breeding basilisks has been illegal since medieval times. And they certainly don't want to use one of the most deadly creatures ever in a school tournament—its gaze alone would have killed the entire audience. The terms are generally considered synonymous in the real world, however, so this was bound to come up in at least one translation.
- The Dutch translation of The Death Gate Cycle suffered from this. A few added sentences in the later books serve to explain that the characters have simply been using the wrong words. It doesn't help.
- The Sword of Truth was translated rather badly to Russian. Here are just the examples from the first book: 1) Kahlan scares away a girl by calmly stating she will "deal" with a certain man she's unaware is her friend. The original has her threatening to skin him. 2) Denna orders Richard to eat from a bowl without his hands because he's her "pet". Except in the translation, the word used means "disciple" or "trainee". 3) The translation claims that Darken Rahl can use the Magic of Orden to rule forever. There are several places where he states he needs Kahlan to have a heir. And then there is the matter of multiple uncoordinated translators...
- Early Spanish editions of Discworld novels used feminine pronouns for Death, since the corresponding word (La Muerte) is female. When Reaper Man came out and unambiguously identified Death as male, the translators had to do some backpedaling.
- The French translation of the Warcraft novel Rise of the Horde combines this with Dub Induced Spoilers (even with the Foregone Conclusion); it is hard to understand why the reveal that warlocks are working with demons is surprising anyone when "warlock" is translated as "demoniste."
- In the scene in the French The Phantom of the Opera where Erik gives his Scarpia Ultimatum to Christine, he tells her to turn the scorpion figurine on the mantlepiece if she agrees to marry him or turn the grasshopper figurine if she refuses, which he claims will blow the Opera sky-high, killing everyone in it. While referring to the grasshopper, he makes a pun out of the French verb "sauter," which means both "to jump" and "to explode." As there's absolutely no word with the same meanings in English, most English translations end up making the wording awkward at best. One translator solved the problem by turning the grasshopper into a frog, which can "jump" and "croak", thus working in an English pun about dying.
- The German translation of the Hercule Poirot story Lord Edgware Dies (German: "Dreizehn bei Tisch) by Agatha Christie altered the plot point where the killer tears an "s" off the corner of a letter to change "she" into "he" to make it look like a man was being written about, because this would not work in German. It was replaced by the tearing of an uppercase "J" (signifying "Jane") to turn it into a lowercase "j" (signifying "jemand", German for "someone"). The only problem with this is that a "j" is not gender-specific and does not justify the characters thinking that it must have been a man.
- Too many to name in the infamous Swedish translation of The Lord of the Rings, due to the translator's insistence on adding in lots of Purple Prose (where Tolkien had been more straightforward) and his stubborn refusal to correct mistakes, even when Tolkien himself called him up and asked him to fix it.
- There's one multiple-books-spanning mistake in the Russian translation of The Dresden Files. The character Sanya is a Russian of African lineage; when he is first introduced in Death Masks, he is described as a black man with a Russian accent. But black people are quite rare in Russia, so the translator decided that Sanya is just swarthy, and chose the appropriate word. Several books later, Sanya's skin color and its rarity in Russia becomes a plot point: as a child he often was gawked at, which made him rather unhappy. The translator decided not to correct the mistake: he invented a different origin for Sanya, making him of an unspecified swarthy Southern ethnicity, which, according to this version, invites much hostility in Russia.
Live Action TV
- Doctor Who
- The Russian dub of the 2005 season of gave the characters generic Russian voices, but retained the line where Rose asks the Doctor about his Northern accent – even though he sounds perfectly normal. Note that the original voices are often heard in Russian dubbing – still, most of the readers wouldn't recognize a Mancunian accent. Technically, most of the Russian dubs, even those with full voice replacement, usually keep the references to the original language and its quirks – under the assumption that the viewers would normally know what the original language of the show is (via the show's title screen, for instance). That the viewers might not know about said quirks, on the other hand... Also, Russian dubs don't usually bother with accents and everybody speaks the same way.
- The French dub of the show had similar occurences of the accent being brought up, despite not being really distinguished in any way by the way the characters were dubbed.
- The Czech dub of "Asylum of the Daleks" was criticised by fans for translating the "eggs-exterminate" pun of the episode in such a lazy way that it altered all the later soufflé-related references of Series 7. In the dub, Oswin is apparently working on "baked icecream" (which is a real thing, BTW) instead of soufflés - despite the fact that what she's trying to bake looks very obviously like a soufflé. This whole bizarre and unnecessary change in that one bit of the translation was made so that the translator-chosen pun could work in the episode. While the pun arguably works, the ham-fisted way it's incorporated into the episode and how it messes up all later Series 7 soufflé references and the continuity tied to them, is really ridiculous. And, to add insult to injury, Oswin isn't even nicknamed the Soufflé Girl at any point in the episode, because it wouldn't make sense anymore. The consensus among the Czech fans is that the pun could have certainly been translated a little differently, without omitting any and all references to soufflés.
- In an episode of Alf, Alf jokes about making a BLT, a bacon, Lucky and Tomato sandwhich. The joke get translated identically in Latin America (where Lucky is called "Suertudo", which obviously doesn't begin with an L), thus ruining the joke.
- The Philippine dub of Kamen Rider Kabuto removes a scene in the first episode where a pickpocket just barely misses slashing Tendou's throat with a knife. The rest of the scene is unchanged, so Kagami says "You almost got killed!" apparently out of nowhere.
- The syndicated version of Scrubs will occasionally shave of a piece of the episode for whatever reason. This ranges from the removal of a single line "SUCK IT, BITCH!!" to the removal of an entire climax. So sometimes, His Story will end with Dr. Cox growing closer to J.D. for literally no reason.
- The German dub of the Scrubs episode "My Interpretation" replaces the German patient that JD treats with a Danish patient who only speaks Danish. Despite this they keep the sequence in which J.D. dances to 99 Luftballons in order to bond with the patient, since he is no longer German this sequence no longer makes sense.
- In one episode of King of Queens, Carrie tries to get rid of her accent, in order to get a promotion. Viewers of the German dub are now tempted to ask "What accent?", because she speaks perfect Standard German (,like most people in German dubs do). Luckily, the episode is salvaged a bit by the fact that talk (the word treated as representative for Carrie's pronunciation problems) is contained in the German anglicism Small Talk, giving somewhat the impression that Carrie's main problem is specifically the pronunciation of such anglicisms. note
- In the Buffy the Vampire Slayer episode "Phases" Oz discovers he has become a werewolf. He has a talk with Giles who explains the precautions he can take to prevent him from posing a danger to others; Giles' explanation apparently involved a globe. In the Italian dub Oz instead says Giles used a volcano. What does a volcano have to do with a werewolf...?
- On the subject of Sonic the Hedgehog, the decision of early translators to change Sonic's home world from Earth (granted, the Japanese word for Earth can also mean "the land", suggesting that Sonic's world is actually unnamed)to Mobius (which is presumed to have been a translator error from an interview with Yuji Naka) probably didn't seem like much of a stretch at the time (many of the levels in the early games looked more surreal that anything you'd find on Earth anyway). Years later, after Sonic Adventure started forcing the Japanese continuity on the rest of the world, the series began mentioning Earth by name, humans other than Robotnik/Eggman appeared, and locations took on more realistic elements. Of course, this led to confusion for the many Western fans who grew up with the numerous comic books and TV adaptations which placed Sonic on a planet called Mobius. Extra lines were also added in Sonic Adventure to explain "Eggman" as a nickname used by Sonic & co. to make fun of him while Dr. Robotnik was his actual name, though the latter games don't seem to bother with this.
- The explanation that Eggman was an insult used by Sonic and hated by Robotnik is in itself an example of the trope, as that brings the question of why Robotnik started calling himself that, or why it's the password to one of the doors in the Egg Carrier in the game itself.
- It's an explanation from the comic, but it can also be applied to the games. When recovering from insanity, Robotnik mentions that he was called Eggman as a tease but he took that name and gave it power, forming the Eggman Empire. This could be referencing Sonic Adventure 2 where he blows up half the moon. Suddenly "Eggman" doesn't seem like much of a joke anymore, hm?
- The American Sonic comic tried to reconcile this by revealing that Mobius was Earth in the future (they continue to call it "Mobius" after this revelation, though, regardless of the games explicitly using "Earth").
- Sega of America also briefly attempted to merge Amy Rose in Sonic CD with Princess Sally from the Sonic Sat AM animated series by referring to Amy as "Princess Sally" in the American Sonic CD booklet. Did they really think people were stupid enough to think a squirrel and a hedgehog were the same character just because they were both pink and shared a name? Even before then, Sally wasn't pink in the cartoon aside from its pilot, and she stopped being pink in the comics the next year.) Needless to say, this was disconfirmed into infinity long before Sonic Adventure premiered in the States.
- This particular one got Jossed within two years – in the comics, Amy made her first appearance in Issue #25 (which dropped in 1995); and she was referred to by her proper name in the Sonic Drift 2 game (also 1995).
- The American story of Knuckles Chaotix is this trope in spades. The Japanese one contains multiple references to previous games such as mentions of the Chaos Emeralds, the Master Emerald, and Knuckles being the Angel Island guardian; explains the origins of the Chaos Rings, and states that the park in Carnival Island is Eggman's base of operations. The Western story removed the Continuity Nods, bafflingly changed Knuckles into the guardian of Carnival Island and its park (thus contradicting established canon and even the game itself, creating plot holes such as to why is it that the park has Eggman's face plastered everywhere including its entrance, or why it has areas specifically designed for his boss battle mechs), removed the references to the Chaos Rings (thus leaving them unexplained and unmentioned outside of Japan despite being major items obtainable in the game that are required for the Good Ending), and in their place added a mention of a "Power Stone" that never appears in the game or is mentioned again.
- In an example of both this trope and Voodoo Shark, the American manual of the first game hand waves the Goal "blocks" in Special Stages as disguised traps devised by Robotnik to pull Sonic out of the Special Zone and prevent him from collecting the Chaos Emeralds. Which brings the question: If Robotnik had previously entered the Special Zone and put them there, why didn't he simply grab the Chaos Emeralds when he was there? Especially considering that there were no Goal blocks to pull him out of the dimension prior to his involvement, so collecting the emeralds should have been relatively easy for him.
- Street Fighter II has the infamous quote "You must defeat Sheng Long to stand a chance!" With that, gamers everywhere scrambled to find out just who this elusive "Sheng Long" was, which in part inspired Electronic Gaming Monthly to print an April Fool's joke that may have inspired the character of Akuma. The truth is, Ryu was referring to his Rising Dragon Punch: the Cantonese pronunciation of the Shoryu in Shoryuken is "Sheng Long", and the translators at Capcom had assumed it was a person, and not the name of one of Ryu's special techniques.
- The curious thing about the "Sheng Long" quote was that the actual Japanese version of The World Warrior has all of the victory quotes written in kana (kanji was not added to the game's text until Champion Edition), so Shoryūken is written the same way it is pronounced in Japanese. Most like the translator based their quote on a written script and not on the actual game's text.
- In Super Street Fighter II, Cammy's ending in the Japanese version originally revealed that she was an agent of Shadaloo before she lost her memories and joined Delta Red. In the English version, this was changed into M. Bison revealing that Cammy was his lover. This brings up a strange implication when Street Fighter Alpha 3 revealed that Cammy was actually a DNA copy (read: clone) of Bison himself, although the GBA port of Super Turbo later featured a revised ending that reflected Cammy's retconned origins.
- Breath of Fire II has an island filled with giant monsters and two cameo characters from the first game. One mentions that he has found a weird stone and that when he holds it, he can see his bones through the skin. One of the monsters is called the A. Sludge. If you played the Japanese version, you find out that the A. in his name stands for Atomic! While the translation is technically correct, it doesn't explain much of why there are giant monsters on the island.
- Fire Emblem, aka Rekka no Ken, is a prequel to another game that didn't come out in English. In particular, the game ends on what would appear to be an unexplained cliffhanger that was in fact a setup for the plot of the game that came before it.
- In the Japanese version, the Tactician's affinity is determined by bloodtype and birth month while the English merely uses month. This leaves the fact that there are units who are twins with differing affinity bizarre.
- Fire Emblem Awakening has one right at the beginning. The Avatar, suffering from amnesia, knows Chrom's name without being told it, which Frederick finds very suspicious. However, in the English dub, Lissa calls Chrom by name before the Avatar does, providing a reasonable explanation as to how the Avatar would know it. The scene plays out the same anyway, with the Avatar saying his name "just came to [them]" and Frederick accusing them of lying.
- English releases of Bonanza Bros.note claim the Villain Protagonist thieves are just testing security systems or helping police recover evidence. This doesn't explain why your character appears in prison clothes complete with ball and chain on the game over screen.
- The English localization of JoJo's Bizarre Adventure: All Star Battle has an unfortunate Sub-Induced Plothole with Joseph Joestar's counter-taunt, based on his famous ability to tell a person what they're going to say before they say it. When used against Ermes Costello, he tells her she'll say "Your foe is right here!" While the actual spoken line is the same thing Joseph says, Ermes' line is translated in the subtitles as "Come at me, bro!" Regardless of actually getting the line wrong, Ermes' super meter still takes a hit.
- In Lunar: Silver Star Story Complete, Working Designs mistranslated "Mel governs Meribia" as "Mel founded Meribia." Thankfully, this was corrected in Silver Star Harmony.
- Similarly, in Lunar 2: Eternal Blue Complete, one of Ronfar's battle quotes is "Thank God for miracles!" in a world that has a Goddess (Althena), not a God.
- The American manuals for the NES versions of Contra and Super C (as well as the Game Boy game Operation C) claimed that those games were set in the then-present, while the Japanese versions actually took place in the 27th century. This didn't prove problematic until Contra III, which clearly established it was set in the year 2636 in the opening sequence. To work around this plot hole, Konami's localization team simply claimed that the main characters in Contra III were not Bill and Lance, but their descendants Jimbo and Sully.
- The original Persona hits just about every other bad translation trope there is, so it's not surprising it gets this one, too. In the Japanese version, the two young girls in the other world are Mai and Aki... so it's not very surprising that they turn out to be aspects of the mind of party member Maki — as Nanjo points out, it's simple wordplay. In the English-language version, they're now Mae and Maggie, and Maki is Mary — so not only does this previously fairly well-foreshadowed twist suddenly come out of nowhere, but Nate (Nanjo) still gives the explanation that it's simple wordplay even though this no longer makes sense, making him look less "smart and observant" like he's supposed to, and more like a raving lunatic.
- Shining Force 2 has a scene in which a plot-central prophecy is mistranslated, causing two characters to be referred to with the wrong names. To make things worse, they are referred to with names that already belong to entirely different characters. This causes the prophecy to make no sense in relation to the other games in the series.
- In the original The Legend of Zelda game, the manual includes the hint that the Pols Voice enemy "hates loud noises". At no point in the localized version of the game does this come into play. It's referencing a trick on the Japanese version, in which Pols Voices could be killed by shouting into the microphone built into the controller. However, when the Famicom was released in the West as the Nintendo Entertainment System, it didn't have the microphone, but the description in the manual was unchanged.
- Ace Attorney:
- In the Japanese version of Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney, Maya's Trademark Favorite Food is miso ramen. When the game was localized in America, the setting was changed from vaguely Japan to vaguely America, and Maya's Trademark Favorite Food changed accordingly; she now is a fanatic for hamburgers. For the first three games, this was a fairly harmless change; instead of a favorite ramen stand, they now have a frequented burger joint. The problem came in Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney, when their favorite ramen stand becomes central to one of the cases and all the characters talk about how much Phoenix and Maya used to visit the ramen stand, making something that was always an element of the Japanese script look like a Retcon in the English script. So, from now on, new works (like the manga) have her down as loving burgers and ramen. Then again, since Maya is repeatedly stated in the games to be a Big Eater, it's still pretty easy to apply the "she loves both burgers and ramen" explanation back to the games. It does still leave a bit of room for confusion, though, since it would have only taken a short line or two in-game to mention something like this.
- A bug in the English version of Dual Destinies creates a massive plot hole not present in the original Japanese. The problem? When you first meet Prof. Means, he still has his staff. In the original game it was missing, providing a hint to the true killer. The plot hole only becomes apparent once the staff is revealed to be the true murder weapon.
- If Ace Attorney happens in the US, then why did Edgeworth take up his prosecuting career in California instead of a part of the country without earthquakes? Because the country is really Japan, no such place exists there, and the idea of a place without earthquakes wouldn't occur to a Japanese writer or audience.
- Pokemon Red And Blue had a pretty infamous one. There's an NPC on Cinnabar Island who offers to trade you his Electrode for a Raichu; if you speak to him afterwards he claims "the Raichu you traded me went and evolved!", which of course, isn't possible. This led to years of wild fan speculation, with many interpreting this line as either "proof" of the existence of the so-called "PokéGods", or as an Early-Bird Cameo of a new Mon to be revealed in an upcoming game. Turns out it was just a translation error – in the Japanese Blue Version, which provides the script and engine for the international releases rather than having them directly based on the original Red and Green (Blue was an Updated Re-release with bug fixes and generally better graphics, hence using its code), the NPC traded you a Graveler for a Kadabra, both Pokémon that evolve by trading, and his line afterwards was meant to be a hint on how to obtain their final forms. For the English release the localizers changed the Pokémon being offered to what they were in the Japanese Red and Green but simply forgot to alter the rest of the dialogue to match.
- A slightly lesser example is the move Heat Wave, a Fire move widely available by way of move tutors to Flying Pokémon. It's english description implies it's just another Fire-Breathing move, whereas the japanese version (Hot Wind) came from the pokemon's wings instead, which explains why it can be learned by Sigilyph.
- The deliberately useless move introduded in Gen I could be translated as either Splash or Hop. Given that, at the time, it was only learnable by Magikarp, they decided to go with the former. But starting with Gen II, Pokemon like Hoppip and Buneary have been able to learn it. These Pokemon are associated in no way with water, but clearly associated with hopping. The fact that it's not a Water-type move should have clued them in from the start, but then again, even now the animation for the move does show splashing water underneath the user.
- The move Curse uniquely works differently for Ghost-types than it does for any other type, essentially making it two moves in one. The Ghost version is a Cast from Hit Points status attack that gradually drains the foe's HP, which makes sense. What may baffle English players is the other version of the move, which boosts the user's Attack and Defense at the cost of Speed. Well, as it turns out, the Japanese name of the move is a pun: Noroi can mean either 'Curse' or 'Slow', and the point of the move is that it's actually both; Ghost-types interpret it as "Curse" while others interpret it as "Slow". Unfortunately, this got completely lost in translation.
- The Japanese version of Ruby/Sapphire/Emerald introduced a move called Firefly Light exclusive to the bug-type Pokemon Volbeat, which makes sense. The English translation team called it Tail Glow, making Western fans wonder why Ampharos (an electric Pokemon with a glowing sphere in its tail) can't learn it. And then in Diamond/Pearl/Platinum the legendary Pokemon Manaphy was able to learn it, which makes sense because it's based on deep-sea animals which typically have bioluminescence as fireflies do, but Western fans were even more puzzled because Manaphy has no tail whatsoever.
- At least one Pokemon's name ran into trouble too with the dub into English: Mr. Mime. It wasn't a problem in Gen I, since Pokemon didn't have gender aside from the Nidoran line. But, when gender and breeding were introduced in Gen II, it became possible to have a female Mr. Mime. If it had just been made a single-gender species like Jynx, Tauros, etc. it might have worked. Many already saw it as the Spear Counterpart to Jynx. But, they didn't, since its Japanese name, "Barrierd" is gender-neutural. Same thing happened to Geodude, which are split evenly between genders (in theory; in practice, it's more likely that every single Geodude a player will come across in the wild will be female, just to rub it in) despite the name.
- The animation of Seismic Toss in Pokemon Gold And Silver and Pokémon X and Y involves a planet either being tossed at the opponent (in the case of the former games) or are seen as background animation in order to make the move seem more pretty (in the case of the latter games). This is because the Japanese name of the attack is "Earth Throw", not "Seismic Toss".
- The animation for Submission implies that the move involves spinning in some way. That's because its Japanese name is based upon the pro wrestling move called the "Hell Wheel" (and is portrayed exactly like said wrestling move in the anime).
- Cannon Spike, an action shooting game featuring numerous Capcom characters, features an enemy named Fallen Balrog. The name was kept in the overseas versions of the game, despite the fact that he is based on the Street Fighter II character known as Vega in the U.S.
- The character of Liquid Ocelot exists in Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots because Kōji Totani, the Japanese voice actor for Revolver Ocelot, died and they needed someone to replace him. In Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty, Ocelot was occasionally possessed by Liquid Snake's persona as a result of a botched arm transplant, so they had Banjō Ginga voice Ocelot this time with the rationale that Liquid has completely taken over Ocelot's mind, becoming one entity. The English version of the game didn't have to deal with this problem, so they kept Patric Zimmermann for the role, despite the fact that Ocelot is supposed to be speaking with Liquid's voice, like he does in the English version of MGS2.
- A fairly minor one, but in the original translation of Final Fantasy VI, Terra compares Sabin to a body-builder, and Sabin, a few lines later, refers to himself as a "bear", quotation marks included. In the Japanese version (and the Game Boy Advance retranslation), Terra compared Sabin to Vargas's bears, which Sabin's remark was meant to be a response to.
- A minor example in Final Fantasy VIII, Zell continually tries (and fails) to get his Trademark Favorite Food from the Balamb Garden cafeteria. What his favorite food actually is, however, depends on what translation of the game you're playing (in English, it's hot dogs; in French, it's bretzels, which are similar to hot dogs; etc). Much later, during the Dance Party Ending, Zell is seen stuffing his face with a pile of what looks like dinner rolls. This is actually the punchline to a Brick Joke — in the original Japanese script, Zell's favorite food is a particular kind of bread. He finally got his hands on some!
- Fridge Brilliance: It still sort of works in the English version, as the dinner rolls look like hot dog rolls which would, presumably, contain hot dogs therein.
- The Italian version of Mario Party 8 called Buzzy Beetles "Ronzibei" (a kinda-direct translation of the English name, since is a portmanteau of "ronzare" and "scarabeo", respectively "buzz" and "beetle"), when in every other Super Mario game the name is translated as "Nella".
- Winx Club was dubbed by 4Kids, and therefore had a few of these:
- In one episode, Tecna shot a "Sphere of Truth" at a teacher she thought was evil without any ill effect, but then the teacher turned out to be an evil clone much later (the very kind of thing her spell was supposed to expose). 4Kids never bothered to cover this up at all. It had been originally a plasma sphere, and one can assume that 4K changed it because it was violent. (Here's a video.)
- One episode was butchered so badly 4Kids had to tack on a completely new ending using recycled footage to explain away a plot hole (In the original episode, the witches were running an additional test for the Dragon Fire. In the dub, they captured the fire outright, causing the plot hole, but it escapes for whatever odd reason)... Creating a new one when Icy appears in her witch clothing and makeup in a split second somehow after being in regular clothing. The lip flaps are also poorly done and don't at all match the dialogue being said.
- A rather extreme example: in S3, Icy supposedly gets a new fire power from the season's Big Bad and boasts about it. Yet just a few minutes later, she attacks Bloom (who has a similar fire power, only more powerful) with nothing but her usual ice attacks. Lather, rinse, repeat for the whole season. So you're thinking that they wasted a perfectly good power, right? But the original version doesn't have Icy boasting about a new power, and the fire was just there for show, so to speak. Clip.
- In the first season, Musa is constantly referred to as a princess, something made up for the American dub. When an episode in the second season involved her past as a middle-class citizen, a line was inserted about Musa's dad being a "former prince", which was not a very convincing explanation.
- Minor example: An angry "Stella" is looking for "her" ring. Bloom comes in, so "Stella" asks Bloom about it. Her response differs: In the original, Bloom is confused at Stella's sudden anger and says "Calm down okay? Let's sit down and talk"; in the 4Kids dub, she says, "You gave it to me last night; you said to keep an eye on it." In either case, her response is met with an attack; understandable in the original, not so much in the dub. And at the end, "Stella" turns out to be Darcy, who seems more likely to just nicely ask Bloom for the ring than randomly attack her. (6:38 in the video)
- In one episode of DuckTales, Fenton Crackshell tries to disguise himself as Scrooge. The nephews tell him that he also has to sound like Scrooge. In the original English version, this means of course that Fenton has to imitate a Scottish accent. In the German dub, he starts speaking in a ridiculous undefinable accent, turning this scene into a Big Lipped Alligator Moment. The initial problem responsible for all this is of course, that Scrooge has no accent in the German dub.
- Latin American's Dub of Gargoyles, while being really, really good; committed one terrible and silly mistake. The gargoyles receive their name in the future, and are named after places of the modern USA (Ex: Bronx). Yet, we see them call themselves by those names in the flashbacks of the past. Is quite silly seeing someone named Hudson in the year 988 in Scotland.
- Also, "Demona" is called by that name by the other gargoyles, even when they shouldn't have known humans had named her that.
- Hungary's dub of Kim Possible suffered from various problems, but the clueless translation was the worst offender. For example, in an early episode, Kim's sitting in detention, and one of her mates makes a remark about the nanobot on her nose, thinking it to be a zit. In the dub, he instead asks "You've been busted?", to which the other guy replies "Cheerleaders don't have zits".
- The English dub of Kaeloo screwed up the main character's sex. She was re-dubbed into a male until the 11th episode in which someone finally called her a she, then proceeded to point it out in an argument over who gets to play the (male) lead in a role playing game. Since that episode, she's been consistently referred to as a she. None of the prior episodes were fixed to reflect this, and the change in gender pronouns is treated as if everyone had always known what equipment she had down there.
- The Japanese dub of Transformers Animated renamed Bulkhead "Ironhide" to make him more recognizable to the audience of the movie. This caused a problem when the actual Ironhide appeared in the second season, with an appearance actually based on his G1 incarnation. The Japanese dub renamed this Ironhide "Armorhide".
- In the Russian dub of My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic, "Princess Luna", "Nightmare Moon" and "Mare in the Moon" are all translated as "Lunnaya Poni" (Moon Pony), with ensuing hilarity like "You are the Moon Pony — Moon Pony!".
- The Hungarian dub doesn't translate the names, but neither does it bother to translate titles (such as "Mare in the Moon"), leading to a very bizarre dub, where the characters seem to be arbitrarily switching between languages. Promo material explains that "The ponies have beautiful English names", but... what sense does that make?
- In Boast Busters, the Japanese dub accidentally has Snips outright state in front of Spike that he plans to bring an Ursa Major to Ponyville, but Spike doesn't do anything to talk them out of it, which is probably what he would have done if he heard it in the original.
- The opening for the Japanese dub is longer to make room for the Alternative Foreign Theme Song, and there is also an added talk segment at the end of every episode. To accommodate the extra scenes they've had to cut about a minute of the actual episodes out, and while they tried to cut out only the more minor scenes, it's occasionally led to a few plot holes.
- For example, in the first episode, the scene Twilight mentioning the book she needed from Spike is cut out, but this leads to Spike somehow knowing the book she needed despite her not mentioning the title in the Japanese version.
- The Japanese dub of South Park removed the episode "A Ladder to Heaven", probably due to cultural sensitivity. However, like the Legend of Dratini example above, this created sort of a problem whenever Cartman would get briefly possessed by Kenny (in the episode, he drank Kenny's ashes after mistaking them for chocolate milk mix). A clip from the dropped episode was even retained in their dub of "Casa Bonita".
- In one episode of Angels Friends, Jennifer comes down with a fever. Her temperature is animated on a thermometer in Celsius but is spoken in Fahrenheit due to it being translated from Italian to American English.
- Minor example: the Russian dub of Avatar: The Last Airbender uses the word "magic" instead of "bending". Water magic, fire magic, etc. So Katara's Insistent Terminology line of dialogue to Sokka in the first episode — "It's not magic, it's waterbending" — was instead rendered as "it's not simple sorcery, but water magic".
- And later, a more serious one: when Aang asks Master Pakku for a permission to train alongside his friend, he doesn't use the gender-neutral word "friend", but specifically the Russian word for "female friend". Which makes Pakku's later rejection of Katara odd, as if he didn't already know her gender from Aang's words.