"Caution! Ride no car onto this open space" * If you felt especially weird, you could also translate this as "unlocked room". Additionally funny because in German you cannot "ride" a motor vehicle, only animals. The correct word for "ride" here would be "fahren" ("drive"). And now you Know.
"The entire Gestalt of the Weltanschauung of these former Wunderkinder was characterized by a certain gemütlich attitude toward each other's Schadenfreude."
This becomes quite hilarious when they use a grand ritual to open the portal, with the words "Tauch dich sofort auf!" (correctly: "Öffne dich jetzt!"), which translates into the command "Open!" towards the door...
Later it turns out that the Quincies must have some German ancestry too, with most of Ishida's new attacks and artifacts having pseudo-German names (Seele Schneider, Heizen, Glitz(ern), Sprenger, etc.).
It would seem that human tribes with spiritual powers use German, whilst Hollows and Soul Reapers use Spanish and Classical Japanese.
Speaking of the Quincies, the Vandenreich with all their German terms which are full with wrong grammar.
Fate/stay night, mainly with Rin's spells (for example "Neun, Acht, Sieben, Stil schießen, beschießen, erschießen!", "Abzug, Bedingung, Mittelstand.", "Ein Kämpfer ist ein Kämpfer!").
Fate Zero's anime adaption also, especially the Rin-focused episode 10.
Embalming has tons of it (and tons of strange English, too, considering the title). "I'll die if I don't eat a Baumkuchen!".
Hayate's Unison Device, Reinforce Zwei, sometimes addresses her as "Meister Hayate" (By contrast, Signum, Zafira and Reinforce Eins call her "Aruji Hayate," translated as "Mistress Hayate"). Later on, Agito does the same, even though Signum is her actual Lord.
In the Nanohaverse, Meister is actually a shorten form the term "Device Meister", a Device engineer.
The Saint Cradle speaks German, too, and has a lot of lines in the final episodes of StrikerS
Count Brocken from Mazinger Z was German -a German Nazi ex-officer to be exact-. In one of the manga versions sometimes he fell into uttering some sentence his native idiom occasionally ("Gutten Abend").
The name and episode titles of Rozen Maiden are both in an English influenced German (the proper translation would be "Rosenmaid". The doll's names are also apparently translated from German, for instance, Reiner Rubin is Shinku (pure ruby).
The same is true of Elfen Lied. However, the reason that Nozomi, a main character who sings the song the show was named after, was written out of the anime was most likely to avoid this.
And Weiss Kreuz, apparently mostly because Takehito Koyasu thinks German is cool. The series group takes its name from the broken German for White Cross — the grammatically correct version would either be "Weisses Kreuz" or "Weißkreuz", the German name for lachrymatory gasses used in World War I. The other rival groups are Schwarz (Black) and Schreient (misspelled, means screaming).
In Princess Tutu, when Fakir dramatically fetches his sword, he says something in badly, badly accented German. The series is set in Germany, but still...
Fortunately, the English dub (and Chris Patton) does a better job with the accent, turning the scene into something that's...almost a little badass.
Also, all of the readable text in the show is in German, although again the show's set in Germany, so it might not be all that gratuitous...
Of course, Kujibiki Unbalance with Ritsuko Kübel Kettenkrad. Special mention to her German helmet. Fun fact: Kettenkrad is an abbreviation that refers to the world's only half-track bike and Kübel means "bucket".
The "Kübel" probably refers to the VW Type 82 "Kübelwagen" or "bucket car" (named so for its so-called "bucket seats")
Neon Genesis Evangelion: The names of the organizations SEELE (soul), GEHIRN (brain), and NERV (nerve) are all in German. Additionally, Asuka is German, and so uses some rather poorly done German phrases throughout the series. The dubbers and her English voice actress all had a better grasp of the language, resulting in much improved pronunciation. The English dub also had her exclaiming "Mein Gott!" quite a bit, gave her a penchant for referring to Shinji as a 'dummkopf' (literally 'stupid-head', but good enough fit for Japanese baka or idiot), and generally added a lot more German into her regular speech.
To be fair, dummkopf would sound less silly to a German speaker then 'stupid head' sounds in English.
While the pronunciation surely improved (as expected from someone non-Japanese), the grammar got worse.
Which literary translates as "shit!", but actually comes much closer to a genuinely felt "Fuck!" right from the heart, in contemporary German. (Though the use of swear words is less controversial in Germany, so it's used in a less unappropriate way.)
Alucard also sometimes speaks German, once saying 'Heil den Ich' after he makes a 90 degree landing on a aircraft carrier. Literal translation: vaguely 'Heal/Hail the I' and in correct grammar 'Heil mir/mich!' (depending on you going with 'to hail' or 'to heal' (probably the former in Third Realom and previous German culture))
Integra Hellsing's Evil Uncle Richard kept calling her "Fraülein" for no reason, considering that he is an Englishman with Dutch ancestry, except to underline that he is evil. Only evil people speak German, right?
Legend of Galactic Heroes: Also titled: Heldensagen Vom Kosmosinsel ("Hero legends from Cosmic Island", literally - what makes this gratuitous is the grammatical case and wrong-gender article: it should be "von der" instead of "vom"="von dem"). The empire is clearly based on an anachronistic collage of Germanies, mostly Das Kaiserreich, or at least the theme-park version. They spout out a fairly large number of catchphrases: Prosit (cheers!), Feuer (fire!), Kaiser (emperor), and Neuland (lit. "new land", virgin soil) being prominent. Justified, in that the first Kaiser was apparently an enthusiastic Germanist and Kaiserreichish sort of guy.
Zatch Bell: The real name of character Umagon (Ponygon) is Schneider.
For the confused, this was translated to the English "Emperor" in the American dub
.]] Oddly enough, no other aspect of his role involved this. Although Ken considered himself Kaiser, though, he still mentioned in one episode that he had yet to become the king of the Digital World...
Ho Yay anime Meine Liebe has such brilliant characters as Fuerst Oberst von Marmelade, (Lord Colonel Jelly).
Satella Harvenheit, the Jewel Witch, and Fiore, her sister in Chrono Crusade is German, and all of her attacks are called in that language. Another Woolseyism of the English dub is the fact that her voice actor (the same one who voiced Asuka in Eva) speaks the language.
Hans, the Token Minority German dude on the team of burglars in The Daughter Of Twenty Faces, does this a lot, dropping "Fräulein Chiko" all over the place and once having a short conversation in German with Chiko in (terribly pronounced) German.
Each of the Liger Zero's armor units in Zoids: New Century Zero has a German name - Jager, Schneider and Panzer. These correspond to the armor's specialty - the Jager (hunter) has incredible speed and advanced scanning equipment, the Schneider (cutter) has seven laser blades mounted all over its body, and the Panzer (tank) is incredibly heavy and equipped with ridiculous firepower. Funnily, Schneider also means tailor without technical context.
In fact, Zoids contains more gratuitous German and Italian than you can throw a braunschweiger at, it's just that for some reason the dub worked the names out from katakana, resulting in such hilarious names as Schubaltz (Schwarz) and Alcobaleno (Arcobaleno (rainbow)). Even the seemingly normal names like Flyheight and Zeke were originally Freiheit and Sieg.
In the case of the Berserk Führer, they probably bowdlerized it.
Fafner In The Azure Dead Aggressor includes some examples of this trope, the Fafner units are named after German numerals (Mark Elf, Mark Zwei, Mark Sechs, etc) without forgetting the famous "Mark Sein" (which, funnily enough is homophone to '[es] mag sein.': '[it] might be.'). It might not be a case of completely gratuitous German, though, as Fafner is a concept taken from Germanic mythology.
Ban might actually be an aversion, as he rarely (if ever) speaks the language. The closest he comes is translating a letter (written by a Romanian woman to a Japanese man, but they both worked for the Nazis, so German might have been the language they had in common...). His father, on the other hand, is known as "der Kaiser."
This pops up a few times in Mobile Suit Gundam and its sequels and alternate universes. The Zeon enemy faction was clearly based on Nazis, and had some German phrases (such as the infamous "Sieg Zeon!") and some German Mobile Suit and Mobile Weapon names, like the Dom Tropen ("cathedral tropes", which doesn't make even a little sense) and Neue Ziel (new target).
Also, later installments often had an edge towards German language (Wing used German numbers for Zechs and Noin (actually in German written 'sechs' and 'neun'), SEED had, among others, Tolle Koenig, which translates into 'awesome king' (funnily enough, in the older use of the word it would mean "insane king"), 00 has the Meisters, which are simply put masters, as well as the Gundam Thrones: Eins, Zwei, and Drei ("one, two, three"). G Gundam, on the other hand, surprisingly averted its gratuitous use: the only suit with a German name was from Neo-Germany.)
Gundam X seems to have German in place of English (which seems to be a more common choice) as the "setting language" - note the name of the ship (Frieden) and a lot of the characters' names.
Which is bizarre, really, since the main characters are from (post-apocalyptic) America.
Humongous Mecha in general, really. As more different types of mecha added to a series, the chances of one of them (at least) having a German name approaches 1.
This was inserted into the original translation of Guyver. While the Big Bad's name is usually translated as Richard Guyot, he's known as "Reichmann (realm-man) Gyro" in the old translation, in part because he's a huge, blonde, pseudo-German guy.
Many of the characters in Nodame Cantabile, especially those with a connection to von Stresemann. Stresemann himself uses the alias "Milch Holstein", his manager sometimes speaks in German, etc.
To explain why native speakers might burst into laughter at this point, "Milch" translates to "milk" while Holstein is a breed of cattle famous for its milk output. On a more intellectual level, Gustav Stresemann served both as chancellor and foreign minister during the Weimar Republic.
Actually lampshaded in-story: Chiaki is fluent in German, and immediately makes the connection to milk and cattle when he hears the pseudonym for the first time.
The names of the three main characters of Fireball are in German. Especially Drossel's name is laden with German phrases, which together don't make a whole lot of sense. Also, "Drossel" is the German name for the bird named trush.
He calls France "a wine-loving dummkopf" in the dub.
And then there's Prussia. His song with a title that no one really knows how to translate (the one from the "Ore-sama CD") contains many lines of badly pronounced and Google Translatorish German. "Über dem Rand" (over the edge, but as in "above the edge", not "falling over the edge" - the latter would be the accusative "Über den Rand") is just the beginning.
Also can overlap with Bilingual Bonus. In the episode where Britain and France are spreading nasty rumors about Germany, Britain tells Italy that Germany "hates [him] and thinks [he's] stupid." Italy goes over to Germany and asks if he hates him. Germany's response? "Lies. Actually…ich liebe dich," the German portion of which means "I love you." The shippers rejoiced.
In Sailor Moon, Ami Mizuno has a German setting on her handheld computer.
Practically the whole premise of Pumpkin Scissors is Post WWI Pre WWII Germany. "Gespenst Jäger" (Ghost Hunter, though "Gespenst" is only the singular - correct version would be Gespensterjäger, as one word) and "Himmel" (a drug) which means heaven/sky, are the ones you hear mainly.
All of the invisible 9 units were identified as ""Related title" Jäger", including the real-life Fallschirm Jäger (lit. Parachute Hunter, AKA Paratroopers).
That said, it wasn't actually set in Germany at all, but a Fantasy Counterpart Culture where evidently the exact same language is spoken. In the English dub, characters tend to pepper their speech with German phrases, and a few even have German accents.
Names: Teito Klein (small), Frau (woman or Mrs.), Fea Kreuz (cross), Verloren (lost)
Other: Sklave (slave), Begleiter (literally 'companion'), Antwort (answer), the land of Seele (Seele means 'soul')
.hack is full of this. The author of the Epitaph of Twilight and subsequent originator of The World was born west German, and the programmer of the original game also had Germanic origins.
The majority of the 'Lost Grounds' are made up of or take roots from German words: Dead World of Indieglut Lugh ('Dead World of into-the-embers Lugh'), Briona Gwydion the Dragonbein Range ('bein' also stands for 'bone'), Arche Koeln Waterfall (Combination of Arche, 'ark', and Köln, the German city of Cologne), Wailing Capital Wald Uberlisterin ('Tricker of the Forest'), and finally Hülle Granz Cathedral ('Shell Gloss Cathedral')-which also features one of the two only songs in-game with an actual language, in full German; the other one being the variations of Aura's Theme.
In the English version of the Azumanga Daioh anime, Kagura's frenzied attempted conversation with a a foreign man was in mangled German rather than English. "Helpen? Das help? HELPE MIEL!"
The opening chapter of Litchi Hikari Club consists almost entirely of German commands and exclamations in its first half.
Anime's tendency to do this was possibly lampshaded in Otaku no Video. The protagonists name their anime character "Märchen Doll Maki" - 'märchen' being the German word for 'fairy tale'.
This is just a straight trope example, as Märchen has been adopted into the Japanese language. (see above)
Many songs with vocals that are included in the Guilty Crown soundtrack turned out to have German lyrics. The most prominent example would be the song bios which played at the end of episode 1 and 4 during Shuu's asskicking moment. While the pronunciation is horrible enough to fool even native speakers into thinking it's another language, [[the grammar and spelling of the lyrics is - except for a few details - actually pretty good. The song itself is still freaking awesome. The lyrics also aptly describe the relationship between Shuu and his sister Mana.
In the English dub of Infinite Stratos, the German team member (Laura) does this, fitting in better with her thick accent. The original didn't bother.
Captain Morgan from One Piece has the word "Möwe" (german for seagull) written on his metal chin.
Chopper's attack "Kakuho: Elf" (Kakuho being japanese for Horn Cannon, Elf is german for either eleven or elve)
In one of the early SBS when asked how far Luffy can stretch, Oda responses that Luffy can stretch exactly 72 Gomu Gomu, while 1 Gomu Gomu is 100 Märchen Gomu Gomu (Märchen is the german word for fairy tale)
In Detective Conan the 'Nacht Baron' (Night baron) is a reoccuring fictional character and also a codename for several other things.
Many of the weapons used in Mobile Suit Gundam SEED are named in German. Included are the "Igelstellung" (hedgehog position) vulcans, the Strike Gundam's "Armor Schneider" (Armor Cutter), and the Sword Strike's Anti-Ship Sword "Schwert Gewhir" (sword rifle*
under the assumption that "Gewhir" is a misspelt "Gewehr"
), Rocket Anchor "Panzer Eisen" (tank iron or armour iron) and Beam Boomerang "Midas Messer" (Midas knife). And that's just the Strike Gundam!
Bildergeschichten und Comics
In the parts of ElfQuest dealing with Ember's tribe (part of Hidden Years and the Wild Hunt storylines, all (co)written by Joellyn Auklandus), quite a few character names are German words. The two most prominent examples are Tier ("animal") and Angrif (properly "Angriff", means "attack").
Nightcrawler from X-Men. "Mein Gott!" "Unglaublich!" " Liebchen"
"Ach du lieber...!"
And, always, "Mein Freund."
Recently he addressed Beast as "Liebchen," which is inappropriate unless they were going for some all-blue Ho Yay. And words no one uses.
A Leibchen, by the way, is an item of clothing. It can mean vest, bodice, jersey... A Liebchen on the other hand is an out-of-date expression for "darling"
Generally, German in Marvel Comics is nothing short of abominable ("Eyige!" "Hurensohn!" "Vas der teufel?") - the first issue of the Ultimate imprint comic "The Ultimates" made for a nice change in that regard. "Mein Gott! Erschiesst es! Erschiesst es doch endlich!" which is something you can imagine Captain America must have heard an awful lot.
Marvel has a little-known German superhero called Vormund, which means Guardian. Legal guardian, to be precise. He was previously known as Hauptmann Deutschland, which sounded much like something the Nazis would have come up with.
The German edition of the MAD Magazine once presented German Marvel Superheroes. Their Cap equivalent? Oberst Deutschland.
There used to be a German parody strip, Deutsche Helden, in which Nachtkrabbler (Nightcrawler), der Rote Schädel (the Red Skull) and Elektroblitz (Blitzkrieg) share a flat. The first two are literal translations of the English code-names and sound unintentionally funny to German ears. Which is probably why in the official German editions they generally prefer to use the English names.
Though until the 80's they did translated all titles and names. Interesting they renamed the X-men as X-Team.
Also known, back in the day, as "Gruppe X" (literally "Group X").
Powerhaus of DV8, real name Hector Morales, is normally a big fan of Gratuitous Spanish — but has a Gratuitous German codename as a tribute to his German-born mother.
Savage Dragon gives us Brainiape, who is of course Adolf Hitler s disembodied brain in a glass bowl on top of an ape body with zome of ze worst violence ever visted on ze german sprache in a bildergeschichte.
Commando has this, spoken by none other than Those Wacky Nazis. Most commonly used are various military ranks and exclamations in the middle of other dialogue. Commando is even a Trope Namer, as Gratuitous German is commonly referred to as "Korkkarisaksa" (Commando German) in Finnish.
In Nobody Dies, Unit 02's AI is named Zwei (the German numeral 2) since that Eva was built in Germany.
The 1983:Doomsday Stories for Axis Powers Hetalia contains a nice helping of (largely translated) German. Given how most of the stories take place in Central Europe, it makes sense. Which makes the sudden appearance of Gratuitious Hungarian deliberately jarring.
Since the Griffins of Summer Days And Evening Flames are based on Germanic tribes, it's often names and titles are in German. Occasioanlly, Gilda slips into her native tongue when vexxed or not focused completely.
Grazie, the beautiful new girl did this a couple of times.
Talking to himself: “Yeah, you’ve got a good point. On the other hoof, monologing aloud is quite grand. And as we all know, reality is flexible when something is aroused.” I blinked. “Cool! The Equestrian word is cool, ours is geil, which technically means aroused! Do not confuse these two. Especially not when these Equestrians are all naked.”
There is also the German soldier in the tank who watches Indy fighting somebody through a periscope and says "Die Amerikaner. Die kämpfen wie Weiber!" (The Americans. They fight like women!). That is actually the only German line in the movie that seems to have been said by a native speaker (though it does have a little bit of an American accent).
Actually, the young man IS a native speaker, most probably a university (or college-)student on vacation that got roped as an extra. Based on his pronounciation, I'd say he is from the more northern region, like around the city of Hannover. But such is usually only apparent to a native speaker.
Or in the scene, where the SS guy is thrown out of the window of a zeppelin onto a pile of suitcases, he starts shouting angrily as the zeppelin flies away,
"Dir, noch leid tun, und dir!"
He literally said, "Thyself, still be sorry, and you!" and it makes even less sense in German than it does in English.
This troper was under the impression that he said "Du wirst nochmal hören von Mir", which roughly translates to "Thou wilt hear from me again!" Makes a bit more sense.
On the other hand, Raiders of the Lost Ark has pretty decent German, to the point where I, a year 10/early GSCE/high school student taking German as well as English and French could understand some of the things the Nazi's said, for example the Nazi who Indy beats up in the U-Boat says Warum schläfst du? - 'Why are you sleeping?' in more or less perfect accent/intonation.
Not that it sounds anything like German to natives. But the "German always sounds like someone being angry" stereotype is recognizable.
Not like German perhaps, but like the cleanest Hitler speech...
It's a variety act called "speaking Double Dutch" that Chaplin had learned to do when he performed in music halls and vaudeville, before he got into movies.
House On Haunted Hill 1999 (the 1999 version) uses German writing printed on the walls of the haunted cellar, probably because someone thought that if you have a mad doctor performing vivisections on the inmates, you got to throw in a nod in direction of Evil Nazis (TM). The problem(s): first off, using German for official text makes no sense whatsoever in an asylum that's in the US, secondly the phrases are so mangled as to be barely understandable, and on top of that even what they mean - "stand away from the windows when the alarm sounds" - makes little sense when written on the walls of a _cellar_.
Averted in Sergei Eisenstein's classic WWII-era propaganda film Alexander Nevsky, noted for its musical score by Sergei Prokofiev. In this film, the villains are Germans, but recite their famous chant in nonsensical Latin.
The German in Sky Captain And The World Of Tomorrow is often a bit mangled. A particularly noticeable example is a button labeled with "Dringlichkeitsfreigabe", which then gets translated as "Emergency Release". It should be "Notfallfreigabe/-abkopplung/-entriegelung/-freisetzung".
Monty Python did a couple of sketches specifically for german television. Since none of them spoke or understood enough german, they just memorized their lines and delivered them as they saw fit, which resulted in hilarious mispronunciations.
Their sketch The Funniest Joke in the World had the joke "translated" into German which actually consisted of meaningless words that weren't actually funny at all but still seemed to do the job.
Additionally, their sketch North Minehead Bye-Election had Hitler campaign for election with pseudo-German gibberish inserted into heavily accented English.
And who could forget the sketch about Johann Gambolputty de von Ausfern Schplenden Schlitter Crasscrembon Fried Digger Dingle Dangle Dongle Dungle Burstein von Knackerthrasher Applebanger (Horowitz) Ticonlensic Granderknotty Spelltinkle Grandlich Grumblemeyer Spelterwasser Kurstlich Himbel Eisenbahnwagen Gutenabend Bitte Eine Nurmburgerbratwurstle Gersputen Mitzweimache Luberhundsfut Gumberaber Shonedanker Kalbsfleisch Mittleraucher von Hautkopft of Ulm?
Amunsingly the first means pizza hut, which is called just that in german too. The latter are just capitalized english words with a german ending tacked on.
Muppet Treasure Island: During the song "Cabin Fever", a chorus sings "Ach du lieber Volkswagen car/Saurbraten weiner schnitzel und a wunderbar".
The Rocketeer has lots of decent German, except for one line where a Nazi agent says to Nazi spy Neville Sinclair "Ich habe meine Bestellung, und du auch!", which means "I have my orders, and so do you!". Except the "orders" mentioned here are the sort of orders one gives a waiter. He really should've said "Ich habe meine Befehle".
Kindergarten Cop includes Arnold saying "Das macht mich stinksauer! Jetzt bin ich sauer!"
The Good German has Cate Blanchett making a sound effort at speaking German, while George Clooney (whose character is supposed to have lived as a correspondent in Germany for many years) doesn't seem to care and stumbles through a phonetically pronounced, wrongly inflected and almost incomprehensible German conversation with a child.
A scene in POW movie Stalag17 has all the prisoners dress up as Adolf Hitler and stage a mock rally, as the resident prankster reads from one of the copies of Mein Kampf they were all given on arrival and spouts random German words (the script simply says Harpo Does Something Funny);
Bagradian: Czechoslovakia und Poland - kaput! Und der Fräulein mit der Glockenspiel und der Bustenhalter - verboten! Und der Apfelstrudel mit der Liederkranz - Gesundheit! Everything is Gesundheit, kaput und verboten!
Gabrielle Union's character in Neo Ned (an independent film starring Jeremy Renner) is committed to a mental institution because she thinks she's the reincarnated Hitler. She delivers about three barely understandable German lines. This trope is subverted later in the movie when she admits that her German is prety "shoddy" and that she only had a few German classes in High School.
Done as a riff in Mystery Science Theater 3000The Movie. The film, This Island Earth, as one scene where the alien Exedor attempts to stop the Mut-Ant from attacking Cal and Ruth. Tom Servo immediately starts speaking in German, apparently greeting it good morning and offering a cigarette. It's highly possible that Servo's puppet wrangler, Kevin Murphy, is fluent in German.
The German characters in Hogan's Heroes throw in a few easily-translated German phrases.
Elliot from Scrubs speaks German, a fact that shows up in a few episodes, such as one with a German cancer patient; in fact, her German is way better than that of the "Germans", who speak hardly anything a German would accept as his native language. The actress, Sarah Chalke, actually is fluent in French and German.
In Germany, that was changed into Danish. We have no idea if that makes it better or worse. In other episodes she speaks Swedish, or a swiss dialect. As a rule of thumb for the German dub: When Elliot talks in a language other than German she speaks German in the original English version.
She also mangles it quite horribly, the first it time it comes up. Granted she is angry with Dr. Kelso, but it takes a German a couple of viewings to realize that it is supposed to be German and a couple more to understand it. Other times she has a clear accent, but everything else is quite right.
Doctor Who shows that Japan doesn't have the monopoly on Gratuitous German. "Exterminieren! Exterminieren!" Especially grating since "exterminieren" is not even a proper word (at least not one anyone actually uses), just the usual "Exterminate!" with a common verb ending. More accurate alternative would be "eliminieren" (which was used by the actual German dub), or "vernichten", which, while being closer to "destroy" or "annihilate", was what the... main inspiration for the Daleks used in a similar context.
Used regularly by comedians for Those Wacky Nazis implications: even Jon Stewart is a regular offender. Of course in the complete package, with ze dialect, angry and even (or especially) as German native unintelligible pronunciation and of course scrambled grammar.
Malcolm in the Middle has the original German couple Gretchen and Otto, which spoke a weird broken 'Deutschlish.' In Germany they became Danish.
Dwight Schrute sings a couple of verses of John Denver's "Take Me Home, Country Roads" during an episode of The Office US.
Referring to copier instructions: This is either an incense dispenser or a ceremonial sarcophagus. My German is pre-industrial, mostly religious.
30 Rock: Liz Lemon can speak German, just not all that well. We see her use it a few times, most notably when she accidently sells NBC to a German cable TV company after confusing "verkaufen" with "kaufen" ("sell" and "buy" respectively).
Fringe has quite a few examples. E. g., there's "Wissenschaft Prison Germany". What exactly is a "science prison" supposed to be?
Apart from that, writing "Wissenschaft Prison" as it is, is the German equivalent for what "Sciencegefängnis" is for English, complete with the (non)existent spaces between the words.
Most of the background chatter on the airplane in the cold opener of the series pilot. Hilariously badly spoken/accented, too.
Jack Bauer pretends to be German in one episode and speaks it. When he is told he has an American accent, he explains he lived in America for years. Oddly, he is addressed as "du" instead of the more appropriate "Sie", although it's probably justified since they aren't actually Germans, but Russians.
Not justifiable: Russian also has different pronouns too ("ty" -> "du"; "vy" -> "Sie").
It's not justifiable because in German, using "du" when "Sie" should be used is fairly serious insult.
Frasier played with this a few times throughout its run, most notably in the episode 'An Affair to Forget', where, after one of Frasier's listeners calls into his psychiatric-advice program thinking her Bavarian, fencing-coach husband was having an affair, Frasier begins to think (with good reason) that his sister-in-law is the 'other woman', leading to quite a bit of German; including a scene where the characters must translate from English to Spanish to German, then back again.
As Frasier is a Freudian, and Freud having been a German-speaker from present-day Austria, German psychological terms randomly pop up now and again.
Frasier is even enraptured with a new love interest when, among other interests, she admits to speaking German and liking the German war film Das Boot.
Grimm's monster names and related terms are all terrible German. They go from simple grammar fail (e.g.: using adjectives as nouns; wrongly cobbled-together compound words; e.g. werewolves are called blutbaden. In fact, "Blutbad", plural "Blutbäder", means "bloodbath" or "massacre''. 'blutbaden' itself looks like a verb infinitive, 'to bloodbath' (which doesn't exist)) to horrible dictionary slips (e.g. the supposed 'bee queen' is called "bee gay [person]") and mess-ups of cultural context of phrases that completely destroy the tone of a scene (e.g. the quote "Alles hat ein Ende nur die Wurst hat zwei." which comes from a very well known comedic Breakup Song from the late 1980s, but is used in the show as some kind of philosophical wisdom handed down the generations to say over a friend's dead body).
Sanctuary: In the episode Normandy during the 1944 flashbacks Watson goes undercover as a German officer and has to bluff his way past a German roadblock. This turns into a discussion (in German) about his accent, as he pretends to be Bavarian to explain his mistakes and the soldier holding him up turns out to be from Bavaria as well. Both of the actors' pronunciation was mangled so badly that even Germans watching the original version needed subtitles, and, needless to say, neither sounded even remotely like he was from Bavaria. In fact, this troper was led to expect some kind of twist where the German soldier would turn out to be a Allied spy as well.
Stargate SG-1: In the episode 1969 Daniel Jackson pretends to be a German archaeologist and has a conversation consisting of Poirot Speak English and surprisingly good German. Normally, this would be realistic when an American tries to con another American, but Daniel is supposed to be a genius linguist...
The X-Files: has numerous examples of this trope. "Die Hand Die Verletzt" features a Satanic cult that inexplicably chants auf Deutsch during its ceremonies. "Unruhe" features a serial killer who taunts his victims in German. In this episode we learn Scully learned German in college and she speaks a few phrases. Then there's "Triangle," a dream/fantasy episode which recasts the series villains as Nazis in a World War II setting.
JAG has two examples of this trope. In '"Nobody’s Child" multilingual Sarah Mackenzie correctly translates the hymn title Als ich bei meinen Schaffen wacht to As I watch over my sheep. And in "A Tangled Webb (Part 2)" she speaks German with Mennonite settler in Paraguay.
In Decades Of Darkness, Germany becomes one of three superpowers, thus German (or rather, neudeutsch) phrases tend to crop up, like "funk" (that's pronounced "foonk", for you anglophones) for radio.
This has started showing up in the animation accompanying Zero Punctuation reviews, for no apparent reason.
In his BrütalLegend review credits, Yahtzee mentioned that he studied German...still no particular reason but at least an explanation.
Germany is a superpower at the end of the Chaos Timeline, so don't be too astonished to find a bit of it. For example, Virtual Worlds are called Märchenwelten - fairytale worlds.
In the Yu Gi Oh card game, the Japanese and Chinese versions of Yubel's two evolvedforms have names in horribly mangled German. When they were released in Germany, they got more sensible names (translated from the English ones, which are totally different). Interestingly, Yubel's name is a pun on the words "Jubel" (jubilation) and Übel (evil/bad).
Incidentally, the Japanese and Chinese names are legitimate German names, if you fix the mangling caused by Romanization; Das Abscheulich Ritter (Terror Incarnate) roughly means "The Detestable/Disgusting Knight", while Das Extremer Traurig Drachen (The Ultimate Nightmare) means "The Really Sad Dragons". ('Drachen' DOES mean kite, but I'm sure they were trying to say 'Drache'/Dragon)
Native Speaker Nitpick: The correct phrases would be Der abscheuliche Ritter and Der extrem traurige Drache. Vocabulary sehr gut, grammar ungenügend, setzen! To explain this in more detail, the designers apparently still had trouble with applying the correct grammatical gender and case. Also, Das is the article used with nouns with a neutral grammatical gender; which, considering Yubel's appearance...
The Sons of Rasputin from Mutant Chronicles spinoff Dark Eden have such interesting units as "Soldat", "Schwerwaffe Soldat", "Flammen Soldat" and "Cossack Kommendant". In Mutant Chronicles proper, Bauhaus takes the cake with "Kommandant", "Jaeger" and "Blitzer Kaptain".
Parodied in Robot Chicken during the Anne Frank sketch (starring Hilary Duff). Anne tosses a paint can at some Nazis coming up the stairs. As they fall, one of them screams "Mein Kampf!"
Several stories of the Cthulhu Mythos make references to a book called "Unausprechlichen Kulten" as the second most popular book on cosmic horrors after the Necronomicon. Unsurprisingly, the grammar of the title is just wrong. It would be either "Unaussprechliche Kulte" (unspeakable cults) or "Von unaussprechlichen Kulten" (of unspeakable cults). It could be referred such in a proper German sentence with the right grammatical surroundings, but not on its own without the grammatical German context.
In fact, he speaks no German at all beyond "Stock" phrases from films, having been raised by his mother (British) in post-War Britain.
Lots in the work of Sylvia Plath (both her parents were German), most evident in Ariel.
In Rivers Of London, when DC Grant comes across a German family while trying to escape from the middle of a riot he yells "Raus, Raus" at them while thinking that he hopes it means "move, move" like it does in War Movies, because it's the only bit of German he knows.
Rudolf Von Flugel, from Richard Scarry's childrens' stories, is prone to this sort of thing.
Holmes drops some German in Sherlock Holmes, quoting Goethe at one point.
In the Honor Harrington series, the Andermani Empire is based on Prussian culture, and uses German military ranks and noble titles. However, the author seemingly did not consult a native speaker, because the Andermani's German is wrong on many occasions.
Justified in-universe by a few hundred years of language drift and the influence of the chinese parts of the population
In Veronica Wolff's Young Adult The Watchers series, several characters try to talk in German, including (that should say: especially) the protagonist who refers to a generally disliked teacher as Adolph (Ouch!). But it's not just her:
"Don’t forget your etiquette homework, meine kleine Gummibärchen."
Apparently the author studied languages and art once..
The Beatles recorded versions of She Loves You and I Want To Hold Your Hand in German. They only knew the words phonetically, as none of them spoke German.
This was ostensibly the decision of the record company, to break The Beatles to the German market, and is a good example of Not Doing The Research. The Beatles became popular in Germany during their time spent in Hamburg during 1960-1962, well before they were widely known outside of Liverpool. The English language versions of She Loves You and I Want To Hold Your Hand had already been hits in Germany as well, and whilst the German language single was a big hit, the English versions continue to be more popular. The German version of "Hand" was included on the US album Something New and is more widely known for this.
The Beatles notably almost boycotted the session, but did it on the condition that they didn't have to do anything like that again.
blur, "Girls & Boys": "Du bist sehr schön/But we haven't been introduced" (that means "You're very beautiful/pretty.").
And in "Parklife" "it's not always [i]vorsprung durch technik[/i] you know.
Franz Ferdinand's "Darts of Pleasure" finishes with a repeated chorus of "Ich heiße superfantastisch! Ich trinke Schampus mit Lachsfisch! Ich heiße superfantastisch!" ("My name is super fantastic! I drink Champagne with salmon fish!") The way it's sung is supposed to recall a (male) orgasm.
Let's not forget the title-only Gratuitous German "Auf Achse," whose title is a Shout Out to a German TV series about truckers and includes a verse about Jesus.
Elliot Goldenthal is a well known modern classical composer that has worked for the soundtrack of many movies, and has a sense of humor when he puts titles on the tracks of his albums. One of the tracks in the Batman Forever soundtrack is "Fledermausmarschmusik". It's obvious what it means and what it sounds like.
Another track in the same OST is named "Batterdammerung"
Slovenian band Laibach like to translate innocent songs like Life is Life into German and adapting the music ... slightly. The result would not be out of place at a Nazi rally.
That is gibberish too, the words mean "come one to late". Only nouns are written as one word (that's quite common and makes for exact descriptions in one word) and the last word should be "spät" not "spadt".
The American band Tool has a song "Die Eier Von Satan," in which the singer growls out a menacing speech in German, punctuated by shouted crescendos that are received with wild applause by an audience. It all sounds incredibly Naziesque until you discover that the speech is actually a recipe for hash brownies. Also, the title means "Satan's Balls" (literally "Satan's Eggs"). The band also has a Gratuitous Italian song, "Message for Harry Manback," in which the speaker frequently curses in Italian.
Bill Bailey loves using German gratuitously in homages to Kraftwerk, with songs like "Das Hockey Kockey" and "Hosenbügler".
In fact, in Bill Bailey's Remarkable Guide To The Orchestra, he introduces a Baroque musical piece as 'Wie Tiefer Ist Deiner Lieber', more commonly known as How Deep is Your Love by the Bee Gees.
One word of Visual Kei bands Dir en Grey name exists in german too.
To clarify, the song is about a tourist who is out for a quick vacation shag/ general criticism of sex tourism and the assumption that Foreign People Are Sexy and was thus deliberately given a "mangled foreign language"-look.
Swedish Power Metal band Sabaton uses German words frequently in their Songs, usually when singing about Germans. Anschluss, Wehrmacht, Panzer, Panzerkampfwagen and the like. They also covered the song "Für Immer" by German band Warlock, with actually pretty good German.
KMFDM stands for the grammatically incorrect "Kein Mehrheit fur die Mitleid" (No Majority for Pity). However, the intro of "Megalomaniac" has the spoken words "Kein Mitleid fur die Mehrheit", which is the correct grammar for "No Pity for the Majority".
The Canadian industrial band Front Line Assembly uses it in many of their songs. But their leader, Bill Leeb, was born in Austria, and later moved to Canada, so when used in a very personal song, such as Angriff, it seems less gratuitous.
Eric Bogle's "Flying Finger Filler'' contains a stanza sung in German that makes no sense whatsoever. Of course, the opening verse tells us that the entire song is supposed to make no sense.
When the British punk/dance band Fuzzbox covered Yoko Ono's "Walking On Thin Ice", they translated the spoken word passage to German for some reason. The translation is flawless however and so is the delivery. In fact it sounds as if a native speaker spoke this passage, but the album doesn't feature any credits whatsoever so it can't be said for sure.
"Hello Earth" from Kate Bush's album "Hounds of Love" features one line in German near the end: "Tiefer, tiefer, irgendwo immer tiefer gibt es ein Licht." ("Deeper, deeper, somewhere even deeper, there is a light").
German band Scooter, whose vocals are usually in English, have the tendency to throw in a bit of Gratuitous German. A good example is the end of Posse (I Need You On The Floor), where HP says something that sounds like "heili geil i ihr schweinen", which is loosely translated as 'holy pigs i'm horny for her'
All three Xenosaga games were sub-titled with Nietzsche works in German: Der Wille Zur Macht (The Will To Power), Jenseits von Gut und Böse (Beyond Good And Evil), and Also Sprach Zarathustra (Thus Spake Zarathustra). In addition, there was a Xenosaga Alle Spezielle (all special) DVD. Which, again, got the grammar wrong ("spezielle" is an adjective, in female or plural form, but it has no noun to refer to. "All special" in German would be most likely rendered as "Exklusiv" (such as "Exklusive Bonus-DVD" or something like that.
Etrian Odyssey is fond of this trope. One of the character classes is called Landsknecht (simply swordsman in the Japanese version) and the second game features a character nicknamed der Freischütz. You also come across a few weapons with German names, such as a gun called Hakenbuechse (bonus points for the correct usage of ue in place of ü).
Every Quest for Glory game features several themes, and the themes of the first one were discovery, winter/spring, and Western European mythology, which resulted in a lot of Germanic-inspired stuff.
League of Legends demonstrates this trope isn't limited to Japan. Lux's ultimate attack is 'Finales Funkeln', which means 'Final Sparkle'. Mordekaiser's name is also German, literally translated as 'Murders Emperor' since they inexplicably used the plural form of 'mord'.
This is most likely a play on words with the name "Mordekai" and the word "Kaiser" (Emperor).
Yes, they were actually speaking German. But hearing "Achtung!", "Schutzstaffel!" and "Mein Leben!" (and precious little else) hundreds of times was extremely gratuitous.
The original Castle Wolfenstein was noted simply for having digitized voices (in any language) at all.
In the book "Masters of Doom", which chronicles the history of developers id games up to Quake 3: Arena, John Romero is described as screaming ridiculous german lines into a microphone for later implementation while Wolfenstein 3D was being developed.
Part of No One Lives Forever takes place in East Germany, with soldiers' usual exclamations being the standard "Ach-TOONK!" and "Töten Sie ihr!" (Kill her, which should correctly be "Tötet sie!". "Töten Sie ihr" means "Kill (polite form) to her!"
Examples include Alteisen (Old Iron, really "scrap iron") and Weissritter (White Knight), plus their upgraded forms Alteisen Riese (Old Iron Giant) and Rein Weissritter (Pure White Knight)... plus the Alternate Universe Alteisen Nacht (Old Iron Night) and Weissritter Abend (White Knight Evening). Some of the German names found in Endless Frontier also double as fairytale references, including but not limited to Aschen Broedel (Aschenbrödel, aka Cinderella), Haken, Zeit Krokodil (Hook and "Time Crocodile", Peter Pan references?) and Schlafen Celeste. ("Sleep Celeste")
And of course all the Einst, who name all of their units and attacks in German. Even the mundane stuff like "Energy Drain" which becomes the blatantly obvious "Gewinnenergie". ("Winnergy")
In the GBA game Harvest Moon: Friends of Mineral Town, in at least one cutscene, you can get Pastor Carter to speak German. At no other time in the game does Carter even hint that he's of another nationality (other than the nebulous one wherever Mineral Town is located).
The Medic from Team Fortress 2, a strange American example, is German, and likes to pepper his sentences with German words, even if they don't really make any sense in context ("Oktoberfest!").
His unlockables also share the Germanity (if that is a real English word), being named The Blutsauger (Bloodsucker, also: Vampire) and The Kritzkrieg (causes crits, named after the Nazi tactic of Blitzkrieg.) As part of a development theme, his lines have numerous grammar errors, namely the plurals of "Dummkopf", and his voice actor isn't German.
His name, Klavier, is the German word for piano. It was changed to Konrad (a proper German name) in the French localization, and became Kantilen in the German localization.
Of course, the "Klavier Gavin" name originated in the English-language localization. In the original Japanese version, his name is Kyouya Garyuu.
Klavier's name makes a bit more sense when you consider that he's a musician in a series that loves Punny Names.
His constant use of "Fraulein", however, is a little painful to native European German speakers, since "Fräulein" (with an Umlaut, you mind), being the diminutive of the title Frau and equivalent the title "Miss", is obsolete nowadays and only used when scolding or mocking someone. Calling a woman this can be considered being borderline sexist in some cases.
The underwater theme park in which Ever17 takes place is run by a German pharmaceutical company, so all the signs and automated announcements are in German, and the computer system appears to operate in German as well. Additionally, all the tracks on the soundtrack have German titles except for the opening and ending themes.
Happens quite a bit in the earlier Atelier games, to accentuate the fact that the setting is meant to be a kind of faux-Renaissance Germany; Translation Convention breaking for flavor, basically. This is essentially thrown out the window from Atelier Iris onward.
The main theme of Atelier Iris 3 is called Schwarzweiß -Kiri No Mukou ni Tsunagaru Sekai- (Blackwhite -Worlds Connected Beyond the Mist-) and even mixes the opening and ending with ominous German chanting. ("Ich gieren! Ich morden!")
The Sa Ga Frontier 2 OST is the soundtrack from the video game. Released in Japan, the album's printed paper inserts expect a native Japanese reader, but nearly all the track names are in German for no obvious reason. (A handful are in French.) Though, in fairness, the composer Masashi Hamauzu is a Japanese national who was born in Munich, Germany.
A lot of Square (now Square Enix) games have used German in their titles and other places, such as Einhander (in which German is Earth's global language) and Ehrgeiz (Ambition). Einhänder also features an animated video billboard in the first level that cycles through the text "leben - fallen - Volksgasmaske" ("to live - to fall - the people's gas mask"). Volksgasmaske is the name of a gas mask produced during WWII for civilians.
Sieg Wahrheit (Victory Truth), the player character in Chaos Legion.
Soul Calibur 4 has lots of German names. Usually with horrible pronunciation and very bad grammar.
Ace Combat Zero The Belkan War pitted the player's country against the eponymous Fantasy Counterpart Culture of Germany, so a good 95% of enemy aces have had squadron names or callsigns named after things in German, almost all of them surprisingly accurate. All major (level boss) aces are named after colors sans Schnee which is German for "Snow".
Shin Megami Tensei Strange Journey takes place in the "Schwartzverse" in the Japanese version, combining the misspelled German schwarz ("black") with the Latin-derived "-verse". The U.S. version goes all the way, calling it the "Schwartzwelt" ("black world") instead.
Two of the characters in Soma Bringer are called Welt (world) and Einsatz (mission).
In the X-ratedVisual Novel Madou Souhei Kleinhasa (Magic Trooper Kleinhasa), the protagonist and his squadmates all have pseudo-German names (Belcelica von Meltmann, Nicola Schonheit, Felicia Claushitz....)
Perhaps they meant "Kleinhase", which literally means "little hare"...
In Tales Of Symphonia Dawn Of The New World, Decus uses mostly German words for his Artes, such as "Ausbruch" (outburst), "meine Liebe" (my dear), "Lawine" (avalanche), "Sturmwind" (tempest)and "Strahl" (ray). His Mystic Arte is called "Sturm und Drang", (Storm and Stress), originally being a term to describe a literary period around the end of the 18th Century.
German also names Peridot Hamilton's sword moves in Tales Of Hearts, which she combines with regular fire spells.
The bosses in Jett Rocket have oddly German names. The devs are German, but one wonders why the bosses have German names when nothing else does.
In Heroes of Might and Magic V a few of the Haven units have text written on their robes. You can clearly see "Die Heiligkeit" (the sanctity/saintliness) written on the cape and the robe of the Angel/Archangel. Other Haven units also have text written on their robes and various ribbons and parchemins. You cannot precisely read them due the low resolution, but they seem to be in German and of the same kind, too. Though this is never explained why.
Akumajō Dracula X: Chi no Rondo (1993) aka Castlevania Rondo Of Blood (or to be gratuitously Germanic Devil's Schloss Dracula: Zirkel des Blutes) had speech in German in its introductory sequence. Also, the main character is called Richter.
It's a game that came out only in Japan, this wasn't a translated version for the German market. Considering that Dracula is supposed to be of Romanian origin, and there's the Vampire Vords trope, it makes little sense. Also, Hammer Horror was obviously one of the influences for the Castlevania franchise, and considering English is the international language, English with a British accent would make sense as well. However, it definitely sounds appropriately Gotik.
The original Blood Omen: Legacy of Kain (1996) by Silicon Knights has several German-sounding names for cities/villages (e.g. Vasserbünde, Coorhagen, Nachtholm, Steinchencröe, Uschtenheim - German speakers might know if they make sense or not), while the original script and voice acting of the game is in English.
"Vasserbünde" might either be "Wasserbünde" (Waterbounds?) or "Vagabunden" (Vagabounds), Steinchencröe might be Steinchenkrähe (Pebble-Crow, Steinchen meaning "Kleiner Stein" = Little rock. As for Uschtenheim: No idea.
All these name are perfectly fine names for cities or villages.
Shikigami No Shiro 2 has this between-stages dialog during a two-player game with Kuga Kohtaro and Kim De John:
Kohtaro: Ohhh... hurry, hurry, hurry! De John: Yes! Sturm und drang!
At least, that's what the text box says. However, instead of "sturm und drang", the voice actor says "strong and dumb".
Shadow Hearts: Covenant... Sorta. You see, this character, Karen König, has special moves which had German names. Unfortunately, the transliteration from Japanese katakana to English didn't make it.
Heuervelk is supposed to be Feuerwerk, fire works
Bullenfogel is supposed to be Brennvogel, burn-bird (although you'd say Brennender Vogel, birning bird in German - or, more simply: Phönix)
Geuschbenst is supposed to be Gespenst, meaning ghost (or, more literaly, "spook")
Sonnestark is most likely wrong in the Japanese version, too , as it is supposed to mean "power of the sun", which would be "Sonnenkraft" (the Japanese word for "strength can mean stärke as well as Kraft in German. This is most likely a case of did not do the research)
Suikoden Tierkreis has quite a bit of this: "Tierkreis" means "Zodiac", if memory serves; also, the nation of Ritterschild ("Knight Shield"), and its three representatives Geschutz, Minen and Buchse. Geschütz's name means gun or cannon, Minen means "Mines" and Büchse means tin can or can be a gun with a rifled barrel (which would be more fitting considering the other 2 guys of this trio). Because nowadays there are no guns with a barrel that is not rifled the word Büchse has fallen in disuse and is considered old-fashioned.
Neinhalt Sieger from Samurai Shodown II has every single one of his special moves named in German, so we get odd stuff like Elefantglied (Elephant member (as in body part)), Vulkan Weinen (Vulcan Cry [as in 'weep', not 'shout']), and Blitz Jaeger (Lightning Hunter) mixed together with no apparent heads or tails to it besides "it sounds cool".
Japanese fighting game developer Subtle Style LOVES this trope, evident in the titles of some of their games (Akatsuki Blitzkampf, its arcade revision, Akatsuki Blitzkampf Ausführung Achse, and En-Eins Perfektewelt), character names (Elektrosoldat, Fritz, Tempelritter), and special events held for their games (Es gibt keinen Gott, Ein ewiges band, Adventskranz, Der kampf von meistern).
Video game / music example: Command & Conquer: Red Alert's trademark musical track, Hell March, includes a single line of German voice-over... for a song that's supposed to represent the USSR. (Germany is in fact one of the Allies in this timeline.) No one knows why, exactly, but the "erroneous" sound clip has never been corrected or replaced, despite each Red Alert title coming with a new version of the Hell March.
The line in question is "Die Waffen, legt an!" (Ready your weapons), but can and frequently has been easily misunderstood as "We want war, wake up!"
Umineko no Naku Koro ni does this with the vocal version of the song "Fishy Aroma" making reference to an in-game clue involving numbers. This is an odd thing to do considering that Gratuitous Italian would make more sense with the series.
Additionally, its first and second forms are Deino and Zweilous, respectively. Hydreigon is the third and final form. The head numbering also matches: Deino with one, Zweilous with two, Hydreigon with three.
Your two helicopter pilots in the Bullet Hell shooter Under Defeat both speak German, while the game's main antagonists all speak in English.
The German-bred Kroenen often lapses into this in Abe Kroenen, and his accent is spelled phonetically. The same goes for Johann Krauss.
Girl Genius is set in a alternate central Europe in which German is the lingua franca, as indeed it was for much of history, and much of the dialogue and in-comic text is apparently actually in German, but occasionally German shows up on signs in the background or for effect (the Jägerkin and various aspects of their culture, Geisterdamen/Weissdamen).
Lisa: "Dad, do you know what Schadenfreude is? It's a German term for 'shameful joy', taking pleasure in the suffering of others."
Homer: "Oh, come on Lisa. I'm just glad to see him fall flat on his butt! He's usually all happy and comfortable, and surrounded by loved ones, and it makes me feel...What's the opposite of that shameful joy thing of yours?
Lisa: "Sour grapes."
Homer: "Boy, those Germans have a word for everything."
The only times The Simpsons ever got spoken German correct (or close to it) was when Homer sang the original German version of Nena's "99 Red Balloons" (that was on the season 16 episode "The Heartbroke Kid") and when Lisa was going over the different conjugations for the German verb "to eat" on her German verb conjugation wheel (she left out "Du isst" ["you eat"] but everything else was correct) and Homer responds, "Ich bin hungrig!" (though Homer's pronunciation of "hungrig" sounded Americanized).
Volkswagen's "Fahrvergnügen"note literally, "driving enjoyment" campaign in the early 90s.
Nineteenth century Japanese didn't have an equivalent for "job," i.e. paid work subject to many constraints for both the employer and the employee dissimilar to a serf's "roboten" (German: statute labor, a serf's duty towards their feudal lord) which was the common form of "job" for non-landholding Japanese. They borrowed the German "Arbeit" and nihonized it into "arubaito", or "baito" for short. This occurs in nearly every anime where a character says they have a (part-time) "job," particularly wage-earner/blue-collar jobs. Case in point, Morisaki Taku's part-time job at a restaurant in Umi Ga Kikoeru.
In the 19th and previous centuries, much of Central-Eastern Europe was under the rule of the Austrian Habsburg dynasty or a local German nobility. Germany, the easternmost "western" country, was seen as having gold-paved streets, and so many non-aristocratic, non-German citizens aspiring to a higher social station attempted to ape Deutschtum in a similar way to modern "Wapanese". The "Junior Germans" were held in about the same regard.
On the flip-side, the un-fanboyish use of the German language for convenience in trade in the Middle Ages, before national feeling really developed, leads to German names cropping up in weird places. The national epic of Estonia was first written down by a man called "Friedrich Reinhold Kreuzwald". Not the most Finnic-sounding thing in the world.
This was aided by the fact that German populations ended up scattered all over Eastern Europe, ranging from the Transylvania Saxons or the Teutonic and Livonian Orders (the cause for the aforementioned Estonia) to as far away as Russia.
In Latvia wannabe-Germans were called "Kārklu vacieši", willow-Germans, for some reason.
Japanese wrestler Masahiro Chono promotes his own line of clothing, ArisTrist, with the tag line "...geborene Kämpfer" ("born fighters"), which also appears on much of the line's apparel. There's a reasonable explanation, however - Chono's wife and co-designer of the collection is German.
"Blinkenlights" in turn is inspired by an infamous computer room sign from The Fifties:
ACHTUNG! ALLES TURISTEN UND NONTEKNISCHEN LOOKENPEEPERS! DAS KOMPUTERMASCHINE IST NICHT FÜR DER GEFINGERPOKEN UND MITTENGRABEN! ODERWISE IST EASY TO SCHNAPPEN DER SPRINGENWERK, BLOWENFUSEN UND POPPENCORKEN MIT SPITZENSPARKSEN. IST NICHT FÜR GEWERKEN BEI DUMMKOPFEN. DER RUBBERNECKEN SIGHTSEEREN KEEPEN DAS COTTONPICKEN HÄNDER IN DAS POCKETS MUSS. ZO RELAXEN UND WATSCHEN DER BLINKENLICHTEN.
Uber is correctly spelled "über". For non-German keyboards lacking the letter Ü, "ueber" would be the correct transliteration. The German word is mostly used to mean "over'/above", but can also mean "beyond" if applied to a scale, or "super", indicationg something is surpassing usual boundaries or limitations.
You'll see this a lot with gamers.
However, the English use of the word is a loanword that has been adapted to suit the English alphabet, in a similar manner to the way a lot of French words have done so (and something that is very common in Japanese as well). The correct German spelling is necessary in German but people who speak English are unlikely to notice such things.
The classical music world runs on this trope along with Gratuitous Italian. While the latter language is the standard for sheet music markings, larger musical concepts/philosophies tend to use German words (e.g. Gesamtkunstwerk, Klangfarbenmelodie, Leitmotif) thanks to Germany and Austria's place as the center of the musical world from the 18th century to the early 20th century, both in terms of great composers and the people studying and writing about them.
Germany was a major scientific center in the 19th and early 20th centuries, so a fair number of scientific terms are German in origin. Bremsstrahlung radiation emitted when an electron is deflected by an atomic nucleus is one example
Philosophy has also led to a large amount of German words, primarily those describing abstract concepts, being absorbed wholesale into English. This is due to the large philosophical production of the late 19th- and early 20th century.
City buses in Kabul are frequently Mercedes models. Their drivers usually have them painted in sober colours with short slogans in poor German along the sides.