FGC:Episode 01 Cut 184

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Screenshots Cut # Description/Dialogue Commentary

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Ritsuko draws her breath out from her nose. She looks at Shinji.

Ritsuko:“The boy in question, I presume.”

OMF: A young man, stuck in an elevator, with two grown women appraising him like a spare room they're intending to renovate. Things probably won't get this psychologically damaging for Shinji again until #26′! Speaking from personal experience, trauma like this stays with you. ;)

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Misato:“Right. According to the Marduk Report, he's the Third Children.”

A curt greeting.

Ritsuko:“Nice to meet you.”

Reichu: Misato says SÂDO CHIRUDOREN サードチルドレン (“Third Children”) here, but the script also gives the term as san'ninme no tekininsha 3人目の適任者, or “third well-qualified person.”

MDWigs: This is similar to how koukyuu (literally “light sphere”) is often times used in writing, but only KOA コア ("core") is used in speech.

thewayneiac: Does anyone know why they use “Children” instead of “Child”? I always thought that they just didn't speak English very well and didn't realize that even though there's more than one child, you still use the singular when referring to just one of them at a time.

Reichu: From time to time, Japanese actually will borrow the plural form of a foreign word and use it in all situations, as Japanese normally doesn't distinguish between singular and plural in the way that European languages do. Some examples are with SHATSU シャツ(“shirt”), GURĒPUFURŪTSU グレープフルーツ (“grapefruit”) -- or, heck, even EVA SHIRĪZU エヴァ・シリーズ (“Eva Series”, in reference to the harpies). Apparently, though, there is more to the“Children” case than this...

Additional Commentary  

MDWigs: This was a very deliberate decision; Gainax didn't just make a mistake. In the book, 2015: The last year of Ryouji Kaji, the note is made: “Please think carefully on the meaning of the word CHILDREN.” It is clear that the title is important and that there is a reason behind it. In their translation, ADV changed it to “child,” which really ruins the entire meaning, in my opinion.

Dr. Nick: Actually, from a translator's point of view, choosing fluency over accuracy was a correct thing to do here. Although this whole “Children” thing is an interesting piece of foreshadowing, it’s not a crucially important plot element and leaving it in the translation would have severely interfered with the flow of the dialogue. Conveying the information content is not the only purpose of a translation: Especially with works of fiction, translations also need to be written with good target language style, and for that purpose sacrifices need to be made sometimes.

Of course, ADV could have created a “Translator’s Notes” section, where they could have explained that this odd use of plural is not an Engrish-error and that the mystery behind it would be revealed in the last episodes of the show (assuming they knew about this tidbit of official info Wigs mentioned, which I kinda doubt).