The Chainsaw Man Anime Just Solved A Big Translation Problem

Chainsaw Man episode 11 originally had a big translation issue, but thanks to a recent fix, the anime can once again retain a big twist from the manga.

Warning: Contains spoilers for Chainsaw Man episode 11 and Chainsaw Man volume 9.

Chainsaw Man episode 11 originally had a big translation issue, but luckily, that has been fixed. Episode 11 follows Aki's meeting with the future demon to sign him a contract, which Aki manages to do without making the same horrific sacrifices as other contractors. The reason for this is that the future demon wants it to live in Aki's eyes to observe him, because according to the future demon, Aki's death is the worst.

Chainsaw Man episode 11 sets a tragic fate for Aki, but the anime doesn't do a great job to begin with. The current translation of the scene is actually a more recent cut where, when episode 11 was first released, Future Demon's lines were translated as he said Aki's death in Chainsaw would rule. Not only is this an inaccurate translation, but it completely misses the point of setting the scene. Leaving the original translation would have ruined one of the comic's biggest twists, so it's a good thing the localization team recognized that and fixed it.

What Chainsaw Man’s Future Devil Really Meant About Aki’s Death

Although in At this point, Future Demon's line about Aki's death has a double meaning. In Saw Volume 9, Aki was possessed by a gun demon at the beck and call of Makima, so Denji was forced to kill him. Future Demon later revealed that when he said Aki would die in the worst possible way, he meant he would die in the worst possible way for Saw protagonist Denji, which is exactly what ended up happening.

The ambiguity of Future Devil's line is nice because it sets up a different tragedy for Chainsaw Man than expected, both because it focuses on Denji and because, ironically, they end up defeating Gun Devil. None of that would be conveyed through the anime's original translation, since that line is only on Aki, which isn't the case. Thankfully, the updated translation brings back the line's original ambiguity, so when the anime finally tells about Aki's death, you won't have any problems trying to sell its tragedy properly.

Why Did The Chainsaw Man Anime Get Its Translation Wrong?

2022's Chainsaw Man anime fixes translation errors, which is good, but this begs the question Why the original translation was wrong. The manga's official translation is four years old at this point, and the localization team needs to know that there shouldn't be any issues with what's being said in each scene, so there shouldn't be a problem. The original translation may have been a draft and was published due to time constraints, the current translation was originally intended for publication.

There's no real way of knowing why the original translation of Saw Episode 11 was so bad, but this isn't the first time something like this has happened. Whether it's because of strict deadlines or the ambiguities often used in Japanese, it's not uncommon for anime and manga to have inaccurate translations. The wrong translation of Studio MAPPA's Chainsaw Man probably happened for the same reason, so its localization team shouldn't be taken too harshly, especially since they did decide to fix some issues to bring the translation more in line with the original story.

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