Shigesato Itoi, Giygas, and Boobies
I learned something new today about the Black Antoid’s name in Japanese, so I thought I’d share!
First, the Black Antoid is called the アリアリブラック in Japanese, or “Ari-Ari Black”.
“Ari” can mean many things, including “ant”. So on the surface, that’s where the translation “Black Antoid” comes from. Something about the Japanese name always seemed “off” to me though, like there was more to it than just saying “Ant Ant Black”, which isn’t very creative.
In this context, “ari” means “with” or “to have”.
Basically, when ordering coffee, if you want milk and sugar added to your coffee, you just order an “Ari-Ari”. So you might say something like, “Give me a hot Ari-Ari, please.” and you’d get hot coffee back with sugar and milk added.
Of course, if you just wanted black coffee instead, you’d order it “Black”.
Putting it together
So, when Itoi named this enemy, he combined those two types and called it an “Ari-Ari Black”. Anyone familiar with these terms was probably like, “What? Black coffee with nothing in it, but also has sugar and milk added? That’s crazy talk.” And then Itoi tied it all up with the ant-related word play.
Anyway, it’s never really as funny or interesting when you have to explain a joke (especially one in another language), but now you know the rest of the story behind this enemy’s name!
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