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‘Squid Game’ will get known as out for ‘botched’ Korean translations

“Squid Game” is within the headlines once more over but extra troubling particulars in regards to the Netflix present’s manufacturing.

Comedy author and fluent Korean speaker Youngmi Mayer took to social media this week to name out the present, at the moment the streaming platform’s No. 1 collection, for shoddy Korean-English translation work.

Based in South Korea, the present depicts lots of of cash-strapped residents taking part in a match of lethal kids’s video games and puzzles, with one distinctive closing contestant destined to a reward of life-changing riches. The indisputable fact that the gamers are of varied deprived and in any other case low-income backgrounds is essential to the nuance of the interpretation, based on Mayer — however that’s utterly missed within the English translation of the present.

Mayer shared a TikTok video explaining that “if you don’t understand Korean you didn’t really watch the same show,” she said in a Thursday tweet with greater than 78,000 likes. “The dialogue was written so well and zero of it was preserved.”

Referring to the “gangster” character Han Mi-nyeo (performed by Kim Joo-Ryoung), Mayer mentioned her dialogue “constantly gets botched,” explaining that “she cusses a lot and it gets very sterilized.”

Squid Game
Youngmi Mayer claimed the Korean-to-English translation in “Squid Game” had been “sterilized” for American audiences.

“She says [in Korean], ‘What are you looking at?’ It’s turned into, ‘Go away [in subtitles],’ ” she famous in a video initially posted to TikTok and reshared by way of Twitter, amassing greater than 4 million views between the 2 websites. “Which might seem arbitrary … You’re missing a lot of this character and what she stands for.”

At one other level, Mi-nyeo is quoted in subtitles as saying, “I’m not a genius, but I can work it out,” based on Mayer.

“It seems so small, but it’s the character’s entire purpose for being in the f – – kin’ show!”

fluent Korean speaker Youngmi Mayer

“What she actually said was, ‘I am very smart — I just never got a chance to study.’ That is a huge trope in Korean media: The poor person that’s smart and clever and just isn’t wealthy. That’s a huge part of her character,” Mayer mentioned.

“The [original Korean] writers, all they want you to know about her is that. It seems so small, but it’s the character’s entire purpose for being in the f – – kin’ show!”

Mayer was later fast to defend translators on Twitter: “Translators are underpaid and overworked and it’s not their fault. it’s the fault of producers who don’t appreciate the art.”

Days earlier than, one other fan shared an analogous gripe.

“Who wrote this caption I just want to talk about how f - - king wrong this translation is,” vented storyboard artist Andrew Minghee Kim. A screenshot from “Squid Game” hooked up to the tweet depicts one of many present’s characters on the telephone together with his mom as she tells him, “I’m just worried that you might get me, you know, something that’s really way too expensive.”

Kim argued, in Mayer’s thread, that the line should have been one thing nearer to, “You don’t need to buy me anything just take care of yourself.”

This is simply the newest controversy to emerge from the present’s Sept. 17 debut, because the #SquidGame hashtag rises to almost 19 billion tagged movies on TikTok alone. The fast success of the present prompted one South Korean broadband supplier to sue Netflix over a surge in visitors within the nation, the advantages of which allegedly are seen solely by Netflix, and never the corporate facilitating the present’s broadcast.

More assaults got here final week as information broke {that a} South Korean enterprise proprietor had been bombarded with 1000’s of calls and texts as a result of the viral present’s writers and producers had used a actual telephone quantity throughout numerous scenes. Netflix and Cyron Pictures have mentioned they’re working to resolve the matter.

The streaming large’s Philippines department has additionally apparently been busy selling the smash collection of their nation — by installing a creepy, supersized replica of the killer animatronic kids’s doll in a shopping center in Quezon City. The doll is featured throughout the infamous “Red Light, Green Light, 1-2-3” sport scene, during which those that fail to freeze on command are recognized and shot down by the robotic.

Fans continued to echo Mayer and Kim’s critiques — of the present and Netflix at massive — together with a number of who mentioned their viewing was “ruined” by the wonky translations.

“Honestly I ruined my non-Korean partner’s viewing of the show cuz every 3 minutes I’d go “BUT THATS NOT EVEN WHAT SHE SAID LEMME EXPLAIN WHAT A MORE ACCURATE TRANSLATION WOULD HAVE BEEN!!!” said one.

Added another, “Every five minutes while we were watching Squid Game [my partner] kept saying ‘that’s not really what they said’ so I feel like I missed out on quite a bit.”

Journalist Delia Harrington alleged the issue is greater than simply that individual present.

“I’ve noticed Netflix cuts out swears, needlessly condenses things (sometimes at the expense of meaning), and often takes out the most salacious/suggestive language from their subs,” Harrington wrote. “That’s not how translation and closed captioning works!!!”

Netflix didn’t instantly reply to The Post’s request for remark.