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Jokes that had to be changed?

#1 · Posted: 3 Jun 2017 20:58
Is there a list of jokes that were changed in the translations? I can understand that joke ie when Haddock says to Calculus "your name", in French it would be "par nom", Calculus replies "gone away" which would be "parti" in french, so the rhyme would be lost altogether.
In comedies overseas a lot of jokes don't translate which is often shy they don't do too well. Sometimes the jokes are changed to reflect an American style of humour in the dubbing. I know nearly all Calculus' hearing jokes would have to be for this.
Did they ever give a reason for not using the Calculus name sunflower? Did they think it would be funnier or suited him better. Also I never though Marlinspike sounded any less French than Moulinsart. Do the later editions retain the original jokes where possible? I know Tintin is explicitly from Belgium in Soviets. The jokes there are largely physical and wouldn't need to be changed.
Is there a site I can go to for a comprehensive guide?
#2 · Posted: 8 Jun 2017 12:54 · Edited by: Moderator
The changes made in translation were quite extensive. I don't know of any website that gives a list but I will try and give you some examples:

"Calculus" does sound more scientific, very fitting for a scientist, which is probably what the translators had in mind.

"Marlinspike" is a sailor's tool used for the handling of ropes, very appropriate for a maritime family. In French it would be "Épissoir", so Marlinspike is very much more English.

In "Seven Crystal Balls", when Calculus is kidnapped, various towns are given English names such as Harlesford (Palissy), Westermouth (Saint-Nazaire) and Bridgeport (La Rochelle).

In "Shooting Star" when Haddock orders Philippulus the Prophet to come down, he says in the original French that he is the "only master of this ship after God" and Tintin refers to himself as "God the Father" when using the megaphone. In the English translations the references to God were taken out as they might have offended the Church.

Another good example is on page 32 of "Red Rackham's Treasure". In panel 2, Haddock is reciting Henry Wadsworth Longfellow's "The Secret of the Sea"; in the original French it was Alphonse de Lamartine's "Le Lac" ("The Lake").

Moderator Note: This is a great set of examples, and thanks for putting it together.
However, as you say, the sheer number of changes to the text (not just jokes) makes collating them in a single thread beyond the scope of what we can deal with here.
We've had threads which tried to answer series-wide issues before, and they quickly become unmanageable, as people can't keep track of what point is being discussed, or the same example gets given more than once, and disputes arise as to what is, and isn't within the scope of the topic.
In the case of the translations, so many variations were made for so many reasons (from expressions which are understood in the French not having a direct translation in English, to the simple fact of the translators being limited to creating dialogue and captions which fitted the speech balloons in the same number of characters as the French, while still expressing the feel and sentiments of the original) that it would not be feasible to collate them all in one place.
So let's keep the general examples limited to what mct16 has given here, and use any further discussion to look for places in which those interested may be able to find additional information about changes to the texts.
The Tintinologist Team
#3 · Posted: 14 Jun 2017 11:39
Please redirect me
#4 · Posted: 14 Jun 2017 23:32
Please redirect me

Well, there isn't a list, so you'll need to work your way through to find discussions about translations.

In the mean time, here's one to start you off: Castafiore Emerald: Thom(p)sons in the army?
#5 · Posted: 15 Jun 2017 00:40 · Edited by: snowybella
In the Korean edition of The Shooting Star (pronounced Singi-han Byeul-dong-byeul, literally "Facsinating Shooting Star"), the joke about the bear on page 1 of the English editions is lost, and instead Snowy (or Mil-lu in this case) says "So where is this 'extra star'?".

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