Worst Day of Masaru’s Life! Prankster Soulmon (JP)
Curse This Curse: Marcus’s Bad Day (EN)
Original Writer: Yokote Michiko
Dub Writer: Seth Walther
June 4, 2006 (JP)
November 26, 2007 (EN)
When Kristy goes to visit Thomas’ mansion for the first time, she’s mortified when Marcus and Agumon embarrass her by eating like pigs and drinking from their finger bowls. In a fit of rage, she screams at Marcus, wishing he would come to several various forms of harm, each more bizarre than the last, and storms out. But as Marcus continues his day, he finds more and more of her weird wishes coming true. Meanwhile, Agumon swears there’s a Digimon hiding on Marcus’ back, though no one else can see it.
Upon arriving at DATS, Marcus is seized by the PawnChessmon for bringing an illegal Digimon into the facility, though no one can find it. While there, Kristy’s penultimate wish comes true, meaning the team can’t afford to ignore what seems to be superstition any longer. Sure enough, her final wish, that Marcus be crushed by an oil tanker, starts to come true when a tanker in the bay loses control and starts heading straight for DATS. Marcus races outside to divert the tanker so no one else gets hurt.
When the rogue Digimon is identified as Soulmon, Kristy tries to stop it by taking back her wishes, but the Digimon isn’t listening. Thomas instead develops a spray that will make Soulmon visible, allowing Marcus to punch it aboard the ship. GeoGreymon reverts Soulmon back to a DigiEgg, and Marcus apologizes to Kristy for being insensitive.
Meanwhile, Thomas tells Commander Sampson that he believes there’s a link between human emotions and Digimon. Either Digimon are being influenced by strong human emotion, or human emotions are being influenced by Digimon. Both agree that further investigation of the topic is critical.
The original episode opens with the title card this time, which is kinda weird. Usually they wait until after the theme song to do so.
When Kristy remarks that Thomas’ home is huge, Marcus’ response differs between versions. Masaru says he’s never been there before. Marcus says that Thomas being rich doesn’t make him better than they are.
In the original, the badass butler/getaway driver refers to the three guests as Daimon Masaru-sama, Chika-sama, and Agumon-sama. The -sama honorific is for extreme respect, usually used to refer to someone at a higher station than oneself, so it makes sense that a butler would use it.
In the dub, the Butler refers to them as Mr. Marcus, Miss Kristy, and Mr. Agumon, which just comes off comical, even though it’s clearly not intended as such.
Tohma: Welcome, Chika-chan and onii-san [big brother]!
Masaru: Who are you calling onii-san?
Thomas: Welcome! I’m glad you guys could make it?
Marcus: Yeah, it’s a joy. Really. -_-
That joke (if it was one, it didn’t seem that funny to me) wouldn’t have been translatable into English. What they went with is fine, since both versions have already established that Marcus only came to the mansion for Kristy, not because he necessarily wanted to.
The music Tohma plays for them is a classical piece, which sounds like it’s being played in the background on the stereo. In the dub, Thomas plays lounge music which is more overt in the scene.
In the original, when Masaru knocks on the large vase, it doesn’t make any sound. The dub adds a hollow knocking sound.
Agumon and Marcus are louder eaters than their Japanese counterparts. And in both versions when Agumon starts feeling unwell (see below), there’s a weird sound that plays that is very similar to when characters from The Flintstones or Scooby-Doo start to run, but hang in the air for a few seconds before gaining traction.
Agumon starts… choking or something, I guess? It’s not clear. Masaru tells him to drink water. Marcus tells him he shouldn’t have eaten the plate. And it works because the plate is gone in the shot, so… maybe he did eat it? O_o
When Kristy has her freakout moment in the dub, the music abruptly stops. It continues in the original.
Chika: Masaru-niichan… Masaru-niichan!!! I hope you slip on the street and hit your head, run into a signpost, fall off a bridge, get run over by a car, and get squashed by a tanker!
Kristy: I wish that you would get embarrassed! I wish you’d slip and fall down! OORRRR! Fall over a big sign in public! Or something weird like get hit by a bunch of sticks! Or get chased by a car! And maybe get smushed by a big oil tanker!
Damn, Chika, calm down. Do you usually make such specific death threats?
While Kristy is shouting, the dub slowly fades the music back in so that the shot of the stereo still makes sense.
Another slash impact screen, but again it’s freaking bizarre. They don’t censor the moment of impact, but rather the point where Agumon’s claw is closest to the screen.
More altered signage.
Tohma: The problem is, you’re too thick-headed when it comes to other people’s feelings.
Masaru: Thick-headed? What part of me?
Tohma: [sigh] My point exactly.
Thomas: I’m afraid that you do have a habit of ignoring other people.
Marcus: I’m sorry, what did you say? I wasn’t listening.
I don’t like the change, but the actors sold it nonetheless.
Tohma: I can understand perfectly how Chika-chan must have felt when she said that parting shot at you.
Thomas: Kristy was clearly nervous at the table. But instead of making sure she was having a nice time, you just teased her, and made her feel more self-conscious.
He did? I must’ve missed it then, because from where I’m sitting, Kristy was mad because he had no table manners. He never teased her.
The music while discussing the curse is casual and upbeat in the original. The dub uses dark, moody music.
After slipping and the signpost, the next item on Kristy’s list was “fall off a bridge” (in Japanese) or “get attacked by a bunch of sticks” (in English). The reason for this change is because she used the word Hashi, which could bridge or chopsticks. Since there’s no equivalent pun in English, they just went direct with it.
Marcus: I’m not falling for any of that curse stuff!
Thomas: But you already have! Literally.
Marcus: Oh, haha. Very funny, Nerdstein.
In the original (not here, but many times before and after this episode), Masaru calls Tohma “Tonma.” Tonma is a way of calling someone dim-witted or stupid. The dub introduces Nerdstein, a play on Thomas’ surname Norstein. It’s pretty appropriate, actually though significantly more affable.
The Japanese version takes a weird turn. When the Digimon riding on Masaru’s back sets off the sensors inside DATS, Tohma places Masaru under arrest, even asserting that he could have brought a Digimon in on purpose. In the dub, Thomas puts him under quarantine, which makes way more sense.
Tohma: All those little accidents I was certain were due to his blockheadedness… were all acts of a Digimon?
Thomas: So let me get this straight. You’re saying that all the accidents he was having that I thought were because he was a clumsy oaf were acually being caused by this Digimon?
Tohma and Thomas both suggested it was a curse earlier, so his surprise here is really unfounded.
Kuruma usually means car, but can also mean “vehicle.” So when Masaru is nearly struck by a guy pushing a cart full of electronics, they realize the connection. The dub uses the similarity between “car” and “cart” to make it work, implying that either we all misheard Kristy, or at least the Digimon did.
The dub takes the extra step to have Lalamon explicitly state that an oil tanker is a type of ship, I guess just in case the kids didn’t know (and couldn’t tell with the big dramatic scene coming up?).
The scene with the ship’s Captain and… whoever that other guy is, was originally silent. In the dub, they add the quivering noises from the scared guy, and the guy on the radio shouting “Mayday Mayday, we’ve lost all control!”
They localize the Maritime Safety Agency as the Coast Guard… which is technically more accurate? The Japanese Maritime Safety Agency changed its name to the Coast Guard in 2000. It makes sense in the Japanese version that Miki would call it that, since it was a recent change and she could still be calling it that out of habit. Changing it in the dub makes sense too, since American audiences are more familiar with the idea of a Coast Guard than a Maritime Safety Agency.
Masaru: I just have to get out there! If it’s a fight [the tanker] wants, I accept!
Marcus: We’ll go mano-a-mano, or mano-a-tankero, I guess!
Once again, Yoshino’s expression is all the commentary I need.
The Japanese team seems to be taking Masaru’s threats to fight the boat more seriously. In the dub, their tone and word choice is more incredulous and sarcastic, which is clearly the superior tone to set here. That said, the original hints that Masaru is going to knowingly and willingly sacrifice his own life to save anyone else from being hurt by the tanker. In the dub, he’s just not thinking it all through and acting impulsive.
In the original, the team states that while Masaru is out on his suicide mission, they’re going to find a way to save him and the tanker, resulting in Agumon crying tears of joy. In the dub, Thomas says to leave Marcus to his fool’s errand while the others do their actual jobs, causing Agumon to cry in sympathy for Marcus.
Agumon: Aniki might die!
Agumon: Boss might not make it if you don’t help him!
Kristy: Marcus should’ve been nicer to me, it’s his fault!
Again, he wasn’t mean to anyone. He was just oblivious.
Then again, Kristy is like 8, so maybe she just doesn’t get the difference.
Then again again, she probably is smarter than Marcus…
Kristy: He needs to learn there are consequences to his actions!
What 8 year-old talks like that?
Agumon: Aniki is Aniki!
Chika: You’re an idiot.
Agumon: No you’re an idiot!
Agumon: Kristy, you’re acting very childish.
Kristy: No you’re childish!
Agumon: No you’re childish!
The music in the original for this… very mature debate is somber and thoughtful in the original. It’s more comical in the dub, as you’d probably expect.
Megumi: Soulmon. He’s an Adult-level Ghost-type Digimon.
Miki: Because he’s small and can turn invisible, we were unable to track him with our Digimon radars.
Megumi: Soulmon. It’s a Champion-level Ghost Digimon.
Miki: Unfortunately, because of its small size and because of its ability to turn itself invisible, we won’t be able to detect it with our Digimon radar.
…so they felt the need to censor DigiSoul, but they kept Soulmon?
Yoshino: If only we could see his form, we could knock him flat in one hit.
Kudamon: Yoshino. You’re becoming more and more like Masaru these days.
Yoshino: Eh? What part?
Yoshi: If only we could find a way to see the little creep. Then it would be easy to catch it!
Kudamon: Yoshino, you’re becoming more and more like Marcus every day.
Yoshi: YOU TAKE THAT BACK!
The dub loses points because Marcus would never want to “capture” the little creep. Knocking it flat fits better. But it gets some of those points back because Yoshi’s reaction was way better.
Melissa Fahn’s acting in the scene where Kristy is running to save Marcus is absolutely perfect.
Masaru: Bring it on!
Tohma: You are an idiot.
Marcus: It’s fightin’ time!
Thomas: You’re talking to a boat.
XD Thomas’ line read was perfect.
Agumon: We know you’re in here, bastard!
Agumon: Take that, you invisible ignoramous!
Tohma: That spray is made up of special particles that react to the substance that Digimon are made up of.
Thomas: It’s simple science. Bond something visible to the invisible Digimon, and it won’t be invisible anymore.
Thomas’ explanation makes me laugh a little, because it means he basically just aerosolized glitter.
After Soulmon’s defeat, Masaru thanks Chika for her help in defeating Soulmon. In the dub, he apologizes for not listening to her.
In the original, Tohma tells Satsuma that both Neon and Hayase (the boxer) had strong emotions and ambitions, and that those feelings may have influenced the Digimon that helped them. The dub retains this accurately.
But… Hayase/Harris had nothing to do with the Digimon of the day in that episode. It was his daughter, not him, who was controlling Togemon. So it’s a weird continuity flaw.
Total Footage Kept: 100%
Highly accurate dialogue, no weird cuts, only one non-language related censor, and superb acting. A+