The Evangelion Fan Geek Commentary: Translators Needed.

The Commentary Project. The jewel in our crown. The labour of our love. The apple in our eye….

The task left unfinished.

The Evangelion Fan Geek Commentary project was conceived and begun as the closest thing to a running commentary of of the entire series of Evangelion in web page form. Despite the initial impetus and drive, the project stalled some time ago. Committees were formed, inquiries held, and the great source of our setbacks has been firmly identified; Translation.

Key to the entire Commentary project are the individual episode “cuts” and their descriptions. These cuts, which are typically individual shots, are based off the actual production script pages, which was provided as an extra on the Evangelion Renewal DVD box set. The script pages break each episode into numbered cuts, each of which contains a description, dialogue, and sound effects. By adding an appropriate image and fan commentary to each of these, you get a fan geek commentary of the entire show.

But here’s the catch, the script pages are in Japanese. Here’s an example of one.

A sample page of the Japanese production script.

A sample page of the Japanese production script.

These pages need to be translated into English before they can be uploaded and commented upon. So far, translation has proved to be the single greatest bottleneck in the commentary creation process. Thus far, only four episodes, and the OP, have been completed, and the project has been stalled for some time. Our original translator, Reichu, while still enthusiastic, no longer has the time neccessary to devote to such a task.

So, we are in need of Japanese translators to help get the project moving again. And we’re in need of as many as we can get! There’s a lot of material to be translated. Each episode consists of about 70 script pages like the one above, with around 300 cuts in any given episode. And there are 24 episodes in total that need translating. Ideally, each episode would be translated by a single translator, dialogue, script text and all.

We don’t expect a single person to translate every episode. Even one complete episode translation would be greatly appreciated.

Some requirements we’d like of translators:

  • Experience: Evangelion is a subtle and involved anime, with many scenes having hidden and double meanings, and it contains many scenes that are known to be difficult to translate. This is a project that needs quite experienced translators, familiar with Japanese phrases, mannerisms, etc. Some episodes are more difficult than others in this respect.
  • Notes: Related to the last point will be the need for any translators to provide additional notes or “translators commentary” for cuts that need it. Essentially, if there is something of note such as a peculiar figure of speech, double entendre, strange choice of words, etc, it’s vital that these be included in the translation. It doesn’t have to be done on every cut, but it will be an important addition in those cuts needing it.
  • Feedback: The Eva community is at times quite involved in its analysis. While we will attempt to keep them to a minimum, there will inevitably be questions and queries on the translation. Feedback on the translation will be greatly appreciated.
  • Time: The episode scripts will require quite a bit of translation, so we don’t expect people to be especially prompt. As long as the translation does not drag on to the point where it holds up the project, we will be happy. We’d prefer a correct translation over a quick one.
  • Fan: Being a fan of the series is of course a huge bonus. Not vital, but it could help a lot with the process.

These are not essential qualities, just desirable ones. We’re grateful for any translation aid and advice that can be provided, and hope to put it all to very good use in what we hope will become the most comprehensive¬† presentation and discussion of Evangelion, or indeed any anime.

Any interested parties or those with queries can either head over to this thread in the forums, or else send an email to obsessivemathsfreak at gmail.com . There is no obligation to buy.

In the coming days, notices like this will be posted on other sites in a determined effort to attract the translators we need. One way or the other, this project is getting moving again.