Sunday, March 17, 2019

mou もう

In Japanese, mou もう means various things. It can mean something "already" happened; that "by now" it's somehow; we'll do it "just" a little more; we're "about" to do it "soon;" we'll do something "again;" or never "anymore;" or there's "another" of something; or it can interjection used to express frustration when you've had enough; or even to express confidence on how things are going.

An example of mou もう in Japanese.
Manga: Hikaru no Go ヒカルの碁 (Chapter 4)
Tuesday, March 12, 2019

madao マダオ

In Japanese, madao マダオ is an abbreviation of marude dame na ossan るでダメッさん, meaning "completely useless old man." It's not a Japanese word, actually, but a running joke used in the manga and anime Gintama 銀魂, said by Kagura 神楽 about Hasegawa Taizou 長谷川 泰三.

じゃーね まるでダメなオッさん 略してマダオ!
Manga: Gintama 銀魂 (Chapter 16)
  • jaa ne
    [See ya later].
  • marude dame na ossan
    Completely useless old man.
  • ryaku shite, madao!
    略して マダオ!
    Abbreviate it: MADAO!

For people who know nothing about Japanese, but watch too much anime, the exchange above may be difficult to understand linguistically for a number of reasons. Fortunately, this is a blog about explaining those reasons.
Monday, March 11, 2019

Omae wa Mou Shindeiru

If you're in an anime community, you might have seen the following meme already: omae wa mou shindeiru, or omae wa mou shinderu, followed by someone saying nani?! So, in case you're wondering what the hell are these weebs memeing about, it's a line from the manga and anime Fist of the North Star, Hokuto no Ken 北斗の拳.

Here's the translation:

Manga: Fist of the North Star, Hokuto no Ken 北斗の拳 (Chapter 1)
  • omae wa mou shinderu.........
    You're already dead.
  • nanii~~!?

Note that shinderu しんでる is an abbreviation of shinde-iru しんでいる, the te-iru form of shinu 死ぬ, "to die," which is why some people say omae wa mou shindeiru お前はもうしんでいる instead.

Also note that there are differences between the magazine version, the complete edition, and the anime version. So it's likely the phrase has appeared as both shinderu and shindeiru sometime, making both perfectly correct.
Monday, March 4, 2019

まあいい, maa ii - Meaning in Japanese

In Japanese, maa ii まあいい is an expression used when the speaker doesn't care about something anymore and wants to change the subject of the conversation or go back doing what's actually important. In a sense, it means "whatever."

It's also spelled maa iiいい, maa iiいい.

An example of まぁいい in Japanese.
Manga: Gabriel DropOut, Gavuriiru Doroppuauto ガヴリールドロップアウト (Chapter 5)

まあまあ, maa maa - Meaning in Japanese

In Japanese, maa maa まあまあ, also spelled maa maaまぁ, maa maaまー, is, literally, the word maa まあ twice. So, as you might guess, maa maa is twice as maa as just one maa.

Besides having double maa-ness in it, maa maa is also used in ways maa isn't used, like to say something is "neither good nor bad," or to tell people to "calm down."

Not to be confused with mama まま, "the way it is," or mama ママ, a word for "mother" in Japanese.

An example of まあまあ in Japanese.
Manga: Fullmetal Alchemist, Hagane no Renkinjutsushi 鋼の錬金術師 (Chapter 4)

まあ, maa - Meaning in Japanese

In Japanese, maa まあ, maa, or maa, is an interjection and adverb that can be used in various ways.

An example of まあ in Japanese.
Manga: Rozen Maiden (Chapter 10)
Friday, March 1, 2019

~といい, -to-ii - Meaning in Japanese

In Japanese, to ii といい means literally "if [something then] good." It's used to say something would be good if it happened, or if it were. It's the combination of the conditional particle to と, plus the i-adjective ii いい.

Don't mistake this for to iimasu といいます, which means "[something] is called [something]," or "my name is [something]."

Example of -to-ii ~といい used in Japanese.
Manga: "Assassination Classroom," Ansatsu Kyoushitsu 暗殺教室 (Chapter 1)
Thursday, February 28, 2019

~するがいい, -suru ga ii - Meaning in Japanese

In Japanese, suru ga ii するがいい, or any verb plus ga ii, means literally "it's better to do [something]."

In anime, however, it's pretty much always used by evil-looking characters who're full of themselves to pretentiously tell someone "do this, I allow you to do," a permission, or "it's better you do so," which sounds like an order.

In either case, ga ii is often not translated to English at all.

アハハハっ 私は地獄の支配者になるもの 胡桃沢=サタニキア=マクドウェル この世の悪しきことは私のためにあるっ!! 人間ども!! 私におののき恐怖するがいい!! quote from manga Gabriel DropOut ガヴリールドロップアウト (Chapter 3)
Manga: Gabriel DropOut, Gavuriiru Doroppuauto ガヴリールドロップアウト (Chapter 3)

いいこと, ii-koto - Meaning in Japanese

In Japanese, ii koto いいこと means literally a "good thing," but it's also used, in female speech, as an interjection to call somebody's attention before telling them something.

It's also spelled ii koto いい事, 良いこと, 良い事, 好いこと, or 好い事. A variant is yoi koto よいこと, よい事.

いいこと?戦うためには力が要るのよ でもドール単体では器にすぎない quote from manga Rozen Maiden (chapter 9)
Manga: Rozen Maiden (chapter 9)
Wednesday, February 27, 2019

仲がいい, Naka ga ii - Meaning in Japanese

In Japanese, naka ga ii 仲がいい means somebody is in good terms with somebody else, that they're friends, colleagues, that they have a "good relationship." Literally, it's the word naka 仲, "relationship," plus the i-adjective ii いい, "good," so it means "relationship is good."

It's also spelled naka ga ii 仲がいい. A synonymous variant is naka ga yoi 仲がよい. The homonym naka ga ii 中がいい means "inside is good" instead.
Tuesday, February 26, 2019

運がいい, Un ga ii - Meaning in Japanese

In Japanese, un ga ii 運がいい means someone is "lucky," that they have "good luck." Literally, un 運 means "luck" and the i-adjective ii いい means "good," but the phrase grammatically means "luck is good" rather than "good luck."

It's also spelled un ga ii 運が良い. A synonymous variant is un ga yoi 運がよい.

頭がいい, Atama ga ii - Meaning in Japanese

In Japanese, atama ga ii 頭がいい means someone is "smart," "intelligent," has "good brains." It's a phrase containing atama 頭, "head," the body part, and the i-adjective ii いい, "good." So it literally means "head is good."

It's also spelled atama ga ii 頭が良い. A synonymous variant is atama ga yoi 頭がよい.

An example of 頭いい in Japanese.
Manga: Kaguya-sama wa Kokurasetai ~Tensai-Tachi no Ren'ai Zunousen~ かぐや様は告らせたい~天才たちの恋愛頭脳戦~ (Chapter 9)

いい度胸, ii-dokyou - Meaning in Japanese

In Japanese, ii-dokyou いい度胸 is generally used to say someone has "dared" to go against someone else, or had the "nerve" to do something.

Example of いい度胸 in Japanese.
Manga: Fist of the North Star, Hokuto no Ken 北斗の拳 (Chapter 1)
Monday, February 25, 2019

いい加減, ii-kagen - Meaning in Japanese

In Japanese, ii-kagen いい加減 means literally that something is at a "good degree." However, most of the time, in anime, you'll see it as ii kagen ni shiro いい加減にしろ and phrases alike, which mean "STOP DOING THAT >:(", "CUT IT OUT!!!", "GIVE IT A REST" and so on.

An example of iikagen いい加減 used in Japanese.
Manga: Zatch Bell! / Konjiki no Gasshu!! 金色のガッシュ!! (Chapter 5)
Saturday, February 23, 2019

カッコつけて, Kakko-tsukete - Meaning in Japanese

In Japanese, kakko-tsukete カッコつけて means "to show off," to try to look "cool," kakkoii カッコいい. It's specially used when someone does something in front of someone else in order to impress them. And it's often used to critique someone for trying to look cool but looking lame instead because they're trying too hard.