See here 1:18 - 1:32 Chiho and Emi meet for the 1st time when Emi interrupts Chiho's profession (confession?) of romantic feelings to Maou. Chiho assumes Emi is Maou's ex-romantic partner. In the part translated as 'It's none of your business now!' Chiho seems to address Emi as onee-san.

  1. Is that in like a sarcastic way or something? I thought Chiho would say something like 'omae' ? Or maybe it's a slight in pointing out how much older Emi is?

  2. Actually, I notice the English dub has a non-corresponding part (see here 1:14 - 1:19) where Chiho says 'If anybody here needs to stop yakking, it's you, sister!' So is the meaning of 'onee-san' by original Chiho similar to the meaning of 'sister' by dub Chiho?

Note 1: In the English dub, 'sister' is not directly translated from onee-san because in the original Chiho is asking Emi 'Are you trying to say you're more intimate with Maou-san?' The 'sister' is actually 12 seconds (1:14 dub which is 1:40 original vs 1:28 original) after the use of 'onee-san' in the original.

Note 2: I think the dub is changing the dialogue vastly like trying to make it more of a romantic fight when in the original they're trying to understand what the other is saying.

  • Cross-posted to Japanese.SE: japanese.stackexchange.com/q/95639/5464
    – Aki Tanaka
    Aug 2 at 6:23
  • 3
    Using "omae" to refer to someone directly is disrespectful. Chihiro is addressing someone older that she is not familiar with. Such politeness exists when address strangers that they percieve as older. Using the dub as a reference point is rarely appropriate for inferring the context of the original language as they do not have a one to one relationship. Dubbed lines are often times embelished to not sound out of place to their localized audience.
    – кяαzєя
    Aug 3 at 15:44
  • @кяαzєя 1 - so the 'sister' in the dub IS sarcastic? 2 - re omae well yeah I thought the point of Chiho was to be disrespectful. in this case i thought it was like disrespect covered up in politeness. sarcasm basically. so apparently not? Ok just answer that then. Thanks.
    – BCLC
    Aug 4 at 9:07
  • @кяαzєя Wait the claim made in Japanese SE is that Chiho was not trying to be rude. But if Chiho was then 'onee-san' has to be sarcastic right?
    – BCLC
    Aug 4 at 15:45
  • 1
    You thinking the use of oneechan is sarcastic is you misunderstanding the context of the situation as well as the nuance of the Japanese language. The context of the dub is enough to be it's own rewrite and has little to no bearing to the context of the subtitles. As argumentative is Chiho is, she's still being polite when addressing Emilia. This nuance doesn't really exist in the English language aside from subtle intonation changes or literary devices of wordplay or use of italics in written language
    – кяαzєя
    Aug 4 at 21:40


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