Translation Question About GARO: The Animation

  • Since there isn't a GARO specific forum, I have a question regarding the subtitles for GARO: The Animation. Regarding the Japanese phrase 魔戒法師/Makai Houshi, why is it being translated as Makai Alchemist? "Houshi" means priest (specifically a Buddhist priest), so why not translate it as Makai Priest? Is it just to avoid confusion with the priests of the Church (a different word in Japanese is used for them)? Priest suits the Makai Priests better, as they are artificers and magic-users - their magic doesn't resemble alchemy in general, but rather more what you would see a Buddhist priest do in folklore and popular culture. Considering that FUNimation in particular probably has fans that may know what the Japanese word for Alchemist actually is (especially since Emma's voiced by Ed Elric :^) ), and the Japanese word for (Buddhist) priest does pop up enough in Japanese pop culture so that again fans may recognize that, it seems like a very odd choice (unless for some reason the Japanese companies requested it - still an odd choice in that case, especially since the in-built fandom has been calling them Makai Priests since the late 2000s, but a very understandable reason for the choice).

    (Semi-related nitpick: I can't remember exactly where this was, I believe it was when German and Garm were talking about Mendoza, but there's an extra "o" in Mendoza's name in the subtitles. One to fix on the DVDs, if there are any, I guess.)

    Edit: if any mods see this, since there is now a GARO sub-forum, can this be moved there? I updated the post/thread title to reflect that this translation choice isn't episode-specific anymore as well. I do have to admit to yelling at the screen when I saw "Makai Alchemist" in episode 3 that it is "Makai Priest". Yay, nerd rage. (g) At least we now have Zaruba to act as a calming influence…

  • I too would like to register my issue with this.
    I am very grateful for Funimation for officially translating this series and making it available to the public, however this is the fifth series in the franchise, and the Term 'Makai Priest' has been consistently used throughout the other four series and films. It would be much appreciated if further episode translation could render the term as pre-existing viewers are familiar with.

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