November 19, 2010

Yaba!

The dictionary says that yabai is a young person's slang meaning "oh, crap!"

I haven't heard that. But I keep hearing yaba to mean that. For instance, Nagi says it in the last episode of Mai Otome just before he's captured (about 18:55). And Kuroko says it in the first episode of To Aru Kagaku no Railgun when Mikoto reaches over the table to taken away the little book in which Kuroko had written her seduction plan (at about 12:30).

Is it a contraction of yabai? Or is yaba something else which I haven't been able to find in the dictionary?

UPDATE: By the way, speaking of the last episode of Mai Otome,

/images/04375.jpg

Wowsah!

Posted by: Steven Den Beste in Japanese at 10:21 AM | Comments (19) | Add Comment
Post contains 115 words, total size 1 kb.

1 I only hear "yabai" and "ia/ya da". Not watched the two listed examples though.

Posted by: Pete Zaitcev at November 19, 2010 10:41 AM (9KseV)

2 Sad thing is that if it weren't for the (supposedly) cleavage down there, I would think "ugh, bishounen". It's a good pose, though.

Posted by: Jaked at November 19, 2010 11:18 AM (EjkUJ)

3

I better explain the joke.

/images/04376.jpg

This is what she normally looks like, in the right foreground. It's Miss Maria, and she is by far the oldest of the otome. I would guess she's in her 60's.

/images/04377.jpg

It would seem that this is the first time in many, many years that she's used her robe, and apparently when she does her body changes to the age she was when she first became an otome.

/images/04378.jpg

That's how some of the other characters reacted to her.

Posted by: Steven Den Beste at November 19, 2010 11:48 AM (+rSRq)

4 By the way, the rejuvination isn't permenant. In Mai Otome Zwei she's shown back in her normal gray-haired form, both before and after she again uses her robe.

Posted by: Steven Den Beste at November 19, 2010 11:53 AM (+rSRq)

5 You're correct. 'yaba' is a shortening of 'yabai' that's very common.

Posted by: tellu541 at November 19, 2010 12:39 PM (pJ1uW)

6 I wonder if Sanae Sanemori can transform at will and if it costs her anything.

Posted by: Pete Zaitcev at November 19, 2010 03:49 PM (9KseV)

7 By the way, thanks for the great dictionary link!

Posted by: Mauser at November 19, 2010 04:54 PM (cZPoz)

8 They also short "dekai" like this often.

Posted by: Pete Zaitcev at November 19, 2010 09:07 PM (9KseV)

9 So is Mai Otome overall worth watching?

Posted by: muon at November 19, 2010 09:28 PM (kzJXl)

10

So is Mai Otome overall worth watching?

I didn't watch it all. I only watched the first 5 episodes and the last 8.

Posted by: Steven Den Beste at November 19, 2010 09:44 PM (+rSRq)

11 Fans of the franchize say that in generall continuations are better than originals for HiME/Otome.

Posted by: Pete Zaitcev at November 19, 2010 10:44 PM (9KseV)

12

I certainly like Mai Otome Zwei a hell of a lot.

The original series has a lot of angst. Zwei is too short, and has too much else going on, for the angst to become overwhelming. Nina is still angsty as all get-out, but she gets her act together in the end, and she isn't in the show for very long.

There were some logic breaks. What happened to the Nekogami-sama didn't really make sense, and they never really tried to explain it. And a piece of tension in the very first set-piece wouldn't be tense for anyone familiar with the series continuity.

But that's all minor stuff. Overall it's really well done, and I've watched it a lot of times.

Posted by: Steven Den Beste at November 20, 2010 02:25 AM (+rSRq)

13

By the way, the rejuvination isn't permenant.

Man, I really must have been out of it this morning. The rejuvenation isn't permanent.

Posted by: Steven Den Beste at November 20, 2010 02:29 AM (+rSRq)

14 Not permanent... that brings to mind a rarely seen trope, "Why would I ever change back?"

Posted by: Mauser at November 20, 2010 01:45 PM (cZPoz)

15 Wait.  Do you mean that in the future when she uses the clothing, she doesn't age revert?  Or just that the age revert only lasts while she wears the clothing?

Posted by: metaphysician at November 20, 2010 07:40 PM (OLeXB)

16

The robe is more than clothing. It's better thought of as a powered suit.

It is materialized by the gem each otome wears as an earring in her left ear, and there are only a limited number of them. I'm not totally clear on this, whether the same set of gems are reused endlessly or whether it's possible to create new ones. I think maybe it's both, but creating new gems isn't easy, which is why the planet isn't knee deep in otome.

I do know that some old ones do get reused. Arika's gem, the "blue sky saphire" used to belong to Arika's mother. And there's one called "Neptune's Emerald" which shows up in Zwei that was thought to be lost.

On the other hand,

Anyway, when Miss Maria activates her robe powered suit, she seems to rejuvenate. When she shuts it down, she physically returns to her proper age. This happens once in Mai Otome and again once in Zwei.

She may be the first to reach an age where this would become evident. Most otome retire before they reach about age 30, if they don't die in action.

A lot of them do die in action. Otome have become a favorite weapon of war for the various city states, since a single otome can quite easily defeat an entire conventional army. In Zwei there's a meeting called "SOLT", "Strategic Otome Limitation Talks", which is interrupted by a planetary existential threat that leads to all the world's otome fighting together against a terrible danger. Whether this will lead to future peace and comity isn't clear.

The easiest way for an otome to retire is to get laid. After that, they aren't able to activate their robes. (there's some sort of double-talk about how male hormones deactivate the nano-machines in the blood of the otome. Which is to say that boy germs ruin it all. something idiotic like that.)

But even after that happens, former otome are still somewat special, and have potential that normal people do not -- as the fate of Arika's mother demonstrates.

And as best I've been able to piece together, Arika's mother kept her gem even after she got pregnant.

It's an interesting alternate world with a lot of interesting characters and an intriguing idea at the foundation of it all. The gems straddle Clarke's Law -- they're definitely technological in origin, but they might as well be thought of as being magic, in practice.

Posted by: Steven Den Beste at November 20, 2010 08:17 PM (+rSRq)

17 I just ran into another example: Saki ep 7, about 07:50. Mako says it.

Posted by: Steven Den Beste at November 21, 2010 05:07 PM (+rSRq)

18

Isn't there another series after Zwei?

Do you think you'll watch the eps you skipped? Your description of the ones you saw sounds better than most of the anime this season.

Posted by: muon at November 22, 2010 12:19 AM (JXm2R)

19

Isn't there another series after Zwei?

There's a prequel called Sifr. I have it. I doubt I'll ever watch it.

Do you think you'll watch the eps you skipped? Your description of the ones you saw sounds better than most of the anime this season.

Unlikely. The middle episodes of the series are drenched in angst, mainly Nina's. Also,

Posted by: Steven Den Beste at November 22, 2010 09:00 AM (+rSRq)

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