I don’t come across broken and poorly done subtitles as much as I used to. I consider it luck when I find myself comfortably lost in translation. Sort of the opposite of Bill Murray’s character in the film, Lost in Translation.
It’s like whichever movie or show I’m watching forces me to find new meaning beyond the broken, confusing subtitles. Could it be a cultural reference? Perhaps a play on words? No, it was definitely sarcasm. The truth is, it’s super difficult for subtle meaning to cross language barriers, especially comedy. Just listen to this recent segment from This American Life about a famous French comedian trying to make his way in the U.S.
Now, unlike with Gad Elmaleh, what happens when a comedy translated into English from Japanese makes absolutely no sense, with seemingly well done subtitles, but still manages to make American audiences crack up? That comedy must be as absurd as the 12 episode anime, Ishida to Asakura.
This is normally the part where I would explain what it’s about, but frankly, I haven’t the slightest clue. I suppose the closest I can get is … Two friends in high school want to open a flower shop, but one of them is really just obsessed with “tits” and becoming a high school teacher so he can look at high school girls’ “tits.” Meanwhile, the token nerd has his beaver teeth cut off before repeatedly dying across the series. Mix those characters with unrelated plot lines, strange transgender humor, and slap stick. That’s pretty much it.
The strange slap stick is probably the only part that translates somewhat well. Other than that, I’m in the dark. So why not dive in and get lost in the absurd translation of Ishida to Asakura? The series runtime is only 24 minutes and 3 minutes of that is the catchy opening title.