Description: THINK YOU'RE MAN ENOUGH?
Ragspaper - November 2, 2011 08:29 PM (GMT)
I'm currently reading a rather infamous localization of a well-known Chinese comic book. In China it's called Dragon Tiger Gate. In America it's known as the somewhat more offensive "Oriental Heroes." And I am enjoying the SHIT out of it.
The story focuses on the adventures of a young man named Tiger who, along with his friends Golden Dragon and Guy, go to Thailand in order to get revenge on the Global Cult, a group of drug smuggling martial artists who killed Tiger's brother, Little Dragon. Along the way they must contend with pirates, trained sharks, the Global Cult's hired assassins, and intrusive airport security measures.
This comic, and others by the creator, Tony Wong, were all brought to America via "Jademan Kung-Fu Comics." I'm not completely sure where the translators themselves were located, but I find it hard to believe english was their first language. Why? Well...
From my experience with Hong Kong action movies, characters with ridiculous names like "Skeleton Secretary" tend to be the result of translators who speak english well enough to write dialogue in it, but not QUITE well enough to know what will and will not sound utterly ridiculous (one of the best examples is a film entitled, no joke, "Dirty Tiger and Crazy Frog). And this kind of translation is by no means restricted to the character names.
As a cartoonist, a 90s kid, and a martial artist myself, I LOVE ridiculous martial arts comics. And you don't get much more ridiculous than "Devilfish Lumberjack." I haven't yet read any of the other Jademan comics, although I'm seriously looking forward to it. They can all be downloaded for free here.
The main reason for this thread, however, is a plea for help. I've discovered Dragon Tiger Gate existed for a while before it started being localized in the 80s. The earlier comics have a very different art style, more similar to that of Osamu Tezuka. And while Dragon Tiger Gate in the 80s reads sort of like a poor man's Fist of the North Star, these 70s comics look more like River City Ransom as interpreted by a convicted serial killer.
Hilariously enough, back then the comic was known as "Little Rascals."
I have been unable to find out much about these earlier comics though. And I REALLY want to read them, if just to figure out what the hell is going on on some of these covers.
That's why I beseech you, fellow Leeches, HELP ME FIND THESE COMICS. Any information would be helpful, even if it's that all copies were burned by angry parents.
dodoman1 - November 2, 2011 08:36 PM (GMT)
xolta - November 2, 2011 08:39 PM (GMT)
Sadly I was unaware of this series but i am reminded of the Rick oh series of manga, anime and movies from the pictures you have shown.
Ragspaper - November 2, 2011 08:43 PM (GMT)
There IS a movie, which I actually saw before I was even aware of this comic. It's okay. I'm not saying it's not as GOOD as the comic, objectively it is a great deal better. It's just that the movie is kind of a generic kung-fu flick, tragically barren of Skeleton Secretaries and Devilfish Lumberjacks.
Revereche - November 2, 2011 08:52 PM (GMT)
Here you go, Rags - you can read them all online (untranslated, granted - use Google's online translator on the page itself to make navigation easier):http://www.kangdm.com/comic/4523/
Here's the first one:http://www.kangdm.com/comic/4523/jzlhm01/
Alternatively, you can read them here, via some little pop-up window Flash browser:http://www.acgoo.com/title/1125
Ragspaper - November 2, 2011 08:58 PM (GMT)
Oh man oh man oh man, thanks!
I somehow get the feeling that I will not be missing much through the lack of translation.
ScutigeraColeoptrata - November 2, 2011 09:33 PM (GMT)
"Right into the spleen and leave the pancreas."
I'm glad to know the ancient art of surgical kung fu is alive and well.
Ragspaper - November 2, 2011 09:58 PM (GMT)
One great thing about this comic's narration is that generally it's all impassive like a narrator usually is, but then without warning it will say something like:
|He was Tiger's brother, but Chan Ou-Wan killed him, so Tiger Wong has a mad-on for Chan. Here he is, Chan Ou-Wan... one handsome dude.|
dodoman1 - November 2, 2011 09:59 PM (GMT)
Is that like another term for a "revenge boner"?
Ragspaper - November 2, 2011 10:18 PM (GMT)
Could be, but as Tiger is quick to remind us...
The context for this is exactly what you think it is.
Ragspaper - November 4, 2011 02:42 AM (GMT)
Jademan Comics proudly presents: the single least romantic kiss in comic book history.
Look at poor Golden Dragon's face. He is clearly afraid of cooties. And why is this panel in black and white? It feels like I'm witnessing a murder.
ScutigeraColeoptrata - November 4, 2011 02:53 AM (GMT)
"ARGH! She has stolen my butchness!"
Nix - November 4, 2011 04:52 AM (GMT)
|QUOTE (Ragspaper @ Nov 2 2011, 08:29 PM)|
|From my experience with Hong Kong action movies, characters with ridiculous names like "Skeleton Secretary" tend to be the result of translators who speak english well enough to write dialogue in it, but not QUITE well enough to know what will and will not sound utterly ridiculous|
While "Skeleton Secretary" is admittedly hilarious, it's even better in context with the other names. I just love how that list of characters is a crazy melange of a few names that make sense and sound pretty much normal (White Lynx, Black Shark, Robin), some single words that just sound a bit off as character names ("Cruelty"? "Dinosaur"?), and some totally off-the-wall names that seem to be the result of sticking together two words completely at random ("Fourth Marshall"? "Incredible Chap?" And of course, that's where Skeleton Secretary comes in, too).
I kind of love the name "Live Pluto" as well, if only for the thought of why it's apparently necessary to specify that he's alive. ("Yes, he's much more dangerous than Dead Pluto. That guy just sits there and decays.") And I wonder about "Hookee Satan". "Hookee" doesn't seem to be a word (there's an entry for it in Urban Dictionary
, but it's too recent to have had anything to do with the comic)... maybe it's a misspelling of "Hooky", as in "playing hooky"? This is a Satan who is shirking his responsibilities and not being where he's supposed to be?
"Satan, shouldn't you be in Hell right now?"
"I'll go to Hell when I wanna!
Ragspaper - November 4, 2011 05:06 AM (GMT)
Other fantastic names include Butch Menace, Happy Administrator, and Gutsy Bear.
Another weird translation thing, albeit one I understand a bit more: it's traditional for people learning kung-fu to address their peers as "brother." In Oriental Heroes, they occasionally translate this as "Br'er," a word I associate more with the Uncle Remus stories than with badass martial artists.
bigbadlochness - November 4, 2011 10:51 PM (GMT)
Holy shit I'm picturing Skeleton Secretary sitting at a desk:
"YOU NEVER BUY ENOUGH INK FOR THE PRINTER!"
"MR. CHANG CAN'T GET THAT DOCUMENT TO YOU UNTIL TUESDAY AT LEAST!"
"I FOUND LAST YEAR'S CHRISTMAS PARTY TO BE TACKY AND DISTASTEFUL!"
Also this is pretty awesome; thanks for sharing
Shadow Goo - November 5, 2011 02:59 AM (GMT)
This comic looks flawless and like I must read it. And also change my avatar for the first time in months. Wonder where I can get my mitts on it.....
Ragspaper - November 5, 2011 03:23 AM (GMT)
I linked to where it can all be downloaded. I dunno about an actual physical copy.http://unduhkomik.blogspot.com/search/label/English
Here's the link again. Oriental Heroes is at the bottom.
Tsar Nazi - November 5, 2011 04:17 AM (GMT)
Westerners make their anime characters look chinky-chong. Orientals make their anime characters look western. What a dissonance.
Ragspaper - November 5, 2011 10:27 PM (GMT)
Just started reading Tony Wong's second comic, Drunken Fist. Right off the bat they spell Lama, as in Dalai, as Llama, as in the pack animal. This bodes well.
Ragspaper - November 5, 2011 11:35 PM (GMT)
So far the best part of Drunken Fist is this guy:
The Brain Demon! Who sometimes, but not always, has a hook for a hand.
Spivsy - November 5, 2011 11:45 PM (GMT)
It looks more like he has a hook for a forearm
Revereche - November 6, 2011 12:17 AM (GMT)
Did they just really suck at being immortal, or what?
Ragspaper - November 6, 2011 12:25 AM (GMT)
Well, they had never been killed before, so they just kind of assumed.
Revereche - November 6, 2011 12:35 AM (GMT)
xolta - November 6, 2011 01:12 AM (GMT)
It appeares that one of the immortal seven as a tumor.
Ragspaper - November 6, 2011 01:26 AM (GMT)
Maybe he's starting to turn into a brain demon too.
ScutigeraColeoptrata - November 6, 2011 01:29 AM (GMT)
I love the expressions on the Brain Demon's face:
"I'm gonna get you with my mental powe-AAAAH! Sword!"
Ragspaper - November 6, 2011 01:59 AM (GMT)
Some typical Jademan dialogue.
xolta - November 6, 2011 02:18 AM (GMT)
|QUOTE (Shadow Goo @ Nov 4 2011, 08:59 PM)|
| This comic looks flawless and like I must read it. And also change my avatar for the first time in months. Wonder where I can get my mitts on it..... |
ScutigeraColeoptrata - November 6, 2011 02:57 AM (GMT)
This is like the Chinese version of Axe Cop.
Ragspaper - November 6, 2011 03:02 AM (GMT)
I love how shocked Fai is at the very idea that Porky doesn't want to be burnt to death.
dodoman1 - November 6, 2011 03:05 AM (GMT)
His name is "Porky"?
Also, I noticed that he's entered a scared bond. As opposed to a sacred one.
Ragspaper - November 6, 2011 03:14 AM (GMT)
Well, Porky's a nickname, you understand. His real name is "Spiritual Child."
He's the reincarnation of the Buddha, you see.
ScutigeraColeoptrata - November 6, 2011 03:24 AM (GMT)
Also the main antagonist of the Mother series.
Revereche - November 6, 2011 04:11 AM (GMT)
Ragspaper - November 6, 2011 04:35 AM (GMT)
Drunken Fist is kind of like Earthbound actually, but set in ancient China and with no idea how weird it is.
FILTHY_PEASANT - November 8, 2011 03:55 AM (GMT)
Ragspaper - November 8, 2011 08:07 PM (GMT)
There's a lesson here. When you're the reincarnation of the Buddha, and you've just eaten a fruit that gave you superhuman strength but caused your body to be covered with fur, and because of that an ape has mistaken you for its baby, there is no shame in biting its nipple.
Ebe - November 10, 2011 12:50 AM (GMT)
Haven't looked at the comics in the original language, but it's common in China to give someone a nickname base on Chinese Zodiac animal being repeated twice. This repition is to make it sound "cute." So it's possible Porky's nickname is literally "Pig" or "Pigpig" and they tried to transate that into Porky.
I knew a woman who nicknamed her kid "Bugbug" because he was small.
Ragspaper - June 8, 2012 09:03 PM (GMT)
I'm posting these here again so I don't monopolize the random topic too much.
Like many comics, Drunken Fist had a letters column. One fine day, they received this.
The "unknown eastern religions" that appear in Drunken Fist are Taoism and Buddhism, for the record.
Anyway, Tony Wong replied, and all things considered was quite polite, if slightly incoherent.
However, he also drew this to accompany his reply:
I should note that not all the letters were accompanied by illustrations. Wong just thought this one was special.