27 votes
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What does this symbol represent on this payphone?

Not only is that the symbol for Japanese yen, the phone itself is also something utterly Japanese, a pink public phone: They're very iconic (somewhat ubiquitous decades ago when you'd see them in ...
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25 votes
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Where does the word "Nyanpasu" come from?

I think it's just her random, meaningless word for "Good morning". I found an interview with the producer of Non Non Biyori.  --主要キャラクターの宮内れんげのせりふ「にゃんぱすー」はどういう意味があるのですか?  小学1年生が考えた「おはこんばんちわ」...
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  • 2,853
23 votes
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What is the opposite of "seme" according to otakus?

"seme" is a noun derived from the verb "semeru" which means "to attack". The expected opposite is probably "uke", derived from "ukeru" meaning "to receive". what Kaoru said was "mamori", derived from "...
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21 votes
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How does Hiyori figure out Yato's real name?

Since calling him by his name "Yato" didn't work, Hiyori knows that name is fake. Yet, she recalls how fondly Yato looked as his small shrine and the name engraved on it. So she deduces the name ...
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  • 1,596
19 votes

What is the opposite of "seme" according to otakus?

This is a reference to yaoi sex positions. Seme is the Japanese term for the dominant partner (usually on top), while the uke ("opposite" of seme) is the submissive partner, usually on the bottom. ...
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  • 29.2k
17 votes
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What's the meaning of the title "B Gata H Kei"?

Okay, so a bit of a Japanese lesson: 'B-gata' would normally refer to the blood type. The Japanese are pretty fond of associating blood types with certain personality traits; and a B-type person is ...
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17 votes
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What's a himouto?

himouto is a blend of the words imouto (妹: Little sister) and himono (干物). himono literally translates to dried-fish, however the slang himono-onna is used to describe girls who put on a different ...
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  • 1,477
16 votes
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How does Yuuki talk like a boy?

In Japanese, there are multiple words for "I", the most common being watashi, atashi, boku, and ore (I'll transliterate to romaji thoughout). Most of these pronouns are definitively gendered, and it ...
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  • 630
16 votes
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The pun worked in English, but what was it in Japanese?

What Hades pronounced is「お前のゆいとおりだ」, which is a pun on 「お前のゆうとおりだ」 ("exactly as you say", "you're correct"). To break down: お前 omae: "you" の no: (subject marker) ゆう yū: a colloquial pronunciation of ...
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  • 306
15 votes
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Why does Satsuki address everyone using "kisama"?

My question is: why does Satsuki Kiryuin use "kisama" to address the Elite Four? They should, at least, be worthy of a bit more of respect. Well, for the one thing, this is anime. Typical conventions ...
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  • 34.6k
15 votes
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What does 'Akame ga Kill' mean and why is it called that?

To reiterate, アカメが斬る (Akame ga Kiru) means "Akame cuts/slices/kills". Kiru also has another meaning: "to perform surgical incision", though the kanji is 切る in the case of this definition. This aligns ...
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  • 9,538
14 votes
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Why does Bakemonogatari exclusively use katakana?

I strongly suspect the use of katakana here is just to give an archaic flavor to the typography. Historically (pre-WW2 or thereabouts), katakana was actually used in many contexts where hiragana is ...
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  • 34.6k
14 votes
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Why does Trafalgar D. Law use 'Ya-や(屋)' suffix while addressing others?

From the SBS (質問を募集する, "I'm Taking Questions") question and answer column of volume 62, chapter 609, page 122: D: Like "Mugiwara-ya", Law-san tends to call people with the "-...
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  • 41.2k
14 votes
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Is Nishikyougoku Ramuko a word play of Toushinou Kyouko?

Nishikyougoku Ramuko (西京極ラム子) is a wordplay on Saikyouyaki Ranko (西京焼蘭子), the name of the author of the fictional magical girl series, the story within story Majokko Mirakurun (魔女っ娘ミラクるん), from which ...
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  • 9,538
14 votes

What does this symbol represent on this payphone?

That's just the Japanese word "yen", written as a word 円 en rather than with the currency symbol ¥.
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  • 34.6k
14 votes
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Why does Mayoi get embarrassed about this tongue twister?

Caution: the answer might be NSFW since it contains vulgar words. Here is the full dialogue by Araragi and Mayoi: 「では、生むみ生もめ生ままもと三回言ってください」 「お前が言えてないじゃん」 「生もめだなんて、いやらしいですっ!」 「言ったのはお前だからな」 「生ままもだなんて、...
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  • 12.2k
13 votes

What are the "Angels" called in the original Japanese version?

These organisms are categorized as 「使徒」(shito) meaning "apostle" in Japanese sources. Shito is the word used in the Japanese translation of the Christian Bible to refer to people who possess the ...
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  • 10.7k
12 votes

What does 'Akame ga Kill' mean and why is it called that?

This is straightforward if you know Japanese. 斬る kiru is a verb meaning "to cut", with the specific nuance of "to kill with a blade". Which is what Akame does, which is why the show is named "Akame ga ...
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  • 34.6k
12 votes
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What is this kanji in Kaguya-sama's anime?

The kanji on the fan that was given by Kaguya is 磨穿鉄硯【ませんてっけん】. According to weblio, the translation is correct: showing unyielding diligence in one's studies; wearing a hole through one's metal ...
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  • 12.2k
11 votes

Where does the word "Nyanpasu" come from?

I have looked this up before and found this: But have you considered why “Nyanpasu” is a creative coinage of a new term in Japanese? Japanese people and linguists may disagree on the exact etymology ...
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11 votes
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Can someone explain the term "oranyan"?

I don't know how accurate my answer is because the content described below are taken from discussion and some source. Source 1 post#422937. Oranyan is a term used to describe male characters that are ...
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11 votes
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Are there any Japanese words for "deport" and "incest" that sound similar enough for a bird brain to confuse?

In Japanese, "incest" is 近親相関 kinshin soukan, while "deport [to one's home country]" is 本国送還 hongoku soukan. These two terms are not similar enough for a reasonable human being to confuse. But for a ...
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  • 34.6k
11 votes
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Is there a name for the abbreviated (usually three-syllable) title?

For what it's worth, in Japanese, you would call this particular sort of abbreviation a 略称 ryakushou or 略語 ryakugo, both of which basically just mean "abbreviation". There isn't an anime-specific term ...
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  • 34.6k
11 votes
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What does the phrase "Rokkon Shojo" mean?

Rokkon shojo does indeed mean purification of the six roots of perception. By my current knowledge there is no other meaning to it. The usage however that is most known to people is during mountain ...
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  • 21.9k
11 votes
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Why do Japanese names change within a manga to have various forms at different times?

Overview Most of your examples have to do with the fact that converting a "Western" name into the Japanese syllabary is a lossy operation, meaning that it's not always possible to reverse-engineer ...
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  • 34.6k
11 votes
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Doujin, doujinshi, doujinshika and doujinka. What's the difference?

TLDR; Doujin: Fandom created works Doujinshi: a (Broader)category of Doujin Doujinshika: A very, very limited form of Doujinka Doujinka: A Doujin creator Now In more details A Doujin A Doujin, ...
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  • 21.9k
10 votes
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Why would 《 and 》 be used in a translation?

It's the same way in the original. The line about "Metacreatures" is: 黒い塊は、それら《怪異》と同じように思えた。 So in this case, it's probably just a matter of the translators using the original punctuation (you ...
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  • 34.6k
10 votes
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Why are the translations of 邪王真眼 (jaou shingan) so divergent?

The Wikipedia translation "True Eye of the Evil King" is a character-for-character translation of 邪 ja "evil", 王 ou "king", 真 shin "true", and 眼 gan "eye". The fansub translation "Tyrant's Eye" is, as ...
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  • 34.6k
10 votes
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Does the name Jiraiya mean something that connects these 2 instances?

This originates from the Japanese folklore 児雷也豪傑物語, The Tale of the Gallant Jiraiya In the legend, Jiraiya is a ninja who uses shapeshifting magic to morph into a gigantic toad. As the heir of a ...
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  • 21.9k
10 votes

What does "padoru padoru" mean?

I've actually questioned this myself in the past, here's what I've basically found so far After digging for a while on Japanese Q&A sites and forums, most people seemed to have concluded that it'...
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