Friday Funsies: My 5 Favorite “Engrish” Moments From Anime

Just a quick fun post for today.

It’s always strange for me to hear that the Japanese think English is such a cool language. Obviously, what they feel about English is the same as I do about the Japanese language, but still, it’s so interesting and downright hilarious when anime has English words just to sound cool.

So today, let’s list out some of my favorite Engrish moments in anime!

5. Catherine – Chuunibyou

Click the images on each entry to watch the moment in action.

This one basically proves my theory that Japanese people think English just sounds cool and worldly. Rikka most definitely picked it up from a general greetings dictionary, and decided that that was good enough to most people. What I love about this scene though, is when the teacher starts speaking to her in fluent English. It’s the most passive aggressive callout ever, and I love how simple it is at shutting down BS without being rude. She’s basically like, “Sit down child, here’s how you do it” from their teacher, and it’s really hilarious.

Nice gag, and is a nice callout to the whole “English is cool” trend for Japanese youth.

4. Airport Infiltration – Stein’s Gate

Speaking of chuunis speaking English, Stein’s Gate has a particularly funny one! What really sells it is Okabe’s confidence that not only would U. S. customs let them in, but that they would let him in after he outright claims he’s a mad scientist hellbent on invading the country and causing chaos. Unlike the teacher from Chuunibyou, Okabe is far from fluent, and the fact that he uses his chuuni voice while speaking English makes it doubly hilarious.

3. LET ME HEAR – Parasyte

I adore this song. I always listen to it when working out, or just when I kinda feel like releasing some angst.

But man oh man, that is some god-awful English! I legitimately thought, for a solid 13 episodes of watching Parasyte, that the entire song was in Japanese. A friend of mine then pointed out to me that the first half of the song is ENTIRELY in English. I listened in closely, and sure enough-

You guys do not notice that we are gifted just by being humans
We are absolute predators
We do not even have any enemies
Maybe there are other animals watching us
And thinking that “someday we will beat them down”

I could have SWORN, that before, I did not realize any of the words they were singing was in English. They literally sounded like Japanese words to me, and it freaked me out when I first realized this.

On the bright side, for the first time ever, I can now I can sing along to to the song of an OP and pronounce words BETTER than the singer does.

2. OHMYGAH – Azumanga Daioh

My favorite surreal and absurd moment in a show full of surreal and absurd moments. I know this is most famous for “OHMYGAH”, but the one that got me rolling was the bombastic “HERRO, EVERY-NYAN”, and when he answers his own greeting of “HOWAREYOU, FINETHANKYOU!” It really showcases the absurd humor that the Japanese love in all of it’s full, terrible Engrish glory. It’s weird, but the execution and delivery of the lines are perfect.

Probably why Azumangah Daioh is still one of the best comedy anime to this day.

1. All of It – Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure

Araki is probably one of the most blatant westaboo mangaka in Japan, and it shows most in the terribly awesome Engrish lines from his series, Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure.
It says a lot that it wasn’t until Part 3 that we even got a Japanese protagonist, and not until Part 4 before we even had a story set purely in Japan.

What really sells all of these lines is the sheer confidence being conveyed by the voice actors, despite their terrible diction and pronunciation. It’s that “Yeah, this sounds cool, and totally not silly at all!” delivery that makes it so absurd and hilarious. There’s no rhyme or reason for why they suddenly spout English other than to remind you that they can. In any other anime, this would annoy me, but bad Engrish is one the things that make JoJo so iconic.

That’s it for today, let me know in the comments some of your favorite Engrish moments that I have not subjected my ears to!

5 thoughts on “Friday Funsies: My 5 Favorite “Engrish” Moments From Anime

  1. XD I’m about to make a reference to that Osaka sequence tomorrow, as it turns out. Oh Ma Gah indeed.

    In any case, the engrish moment I’d have to recommend is in Squid Girl, where Iko holds an entire conversation in adorable engrish.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Nice choices especially the Azumanga Daioh one. Hahaha! I’d say there are moments such as some of the text from the original Kino’s Journey (We NO the future!), the original title of Elemental Gelade which is Erementar Gerade, or some of the English dialogue in the Sakura Wars OVA.

    Liked by 1 person

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