The Time Tunnel Forums

ABC (ended 1967)

the language problem

  • Avatar of infomike


    [1]Jul 26, 2006
    • member since: 07/23/06
    • level: 1
    • rank: Weatherman
    • posts: 9

    When you're 13, inconsistencies in TV shows usually don't make an impression. With Time Tunnel, I found it so annoying that English was almost always used between foreign individuals, regardless of the time and place. I know it was necessary, but to hear the ancient Greeks, Trojans, Hebrews, as well as Russians, Mongols, Afghans, Spanish, French, Germans, Britons, and even aliens speak modern English to each other was quite unsettling. Strangely, the writers were inconsistent. For example, in Kill Two by Two, the Japanese soldiers spoke Japanese to each other at times.

    Edited on 07/26/2006 7:57pm
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  • Avatar of shapeofinfinity


    [2]Apr 28, 2007
    • member since: 08/21/05
    • level: 9
    • rank: Door Number 2
    • posts: 62

    Easiest way to deal with something like this in your mind: just make something up that seems reasonable enough.

     For example: maybe, knowing that eventually they may be travelling back in time to places or eras they may not know the language in, the group that built the time tunnel built in some form of translator that works on both the images the scientists are seeing, as well as anyone who has gone back.  I mean, since we are dealing with time travel, that's not too far-fetched, although I'll admit that the writer's inconsistencies don't help any.

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  • Avatar of kiwiroustie


    [3]Aug 11, 2007
    • member since: 08/25/05
    • level: 7
    • rank: Talk Show Host
    • posts: 10

    Yes, the whole language thing was something that I had thought about butI guess the show wouldn't have worked that well withsubtitles or "On call" translators for Doug, Tony and the Scientific team! There are just too many impracticalities with'keeping it real" so TV has to use some Artistic licence! I mean little has changed today has it? You have only got to watch anyone of the Star Trek franchises and any one of the myriad of weird and wonderful aliens whoall speak with American accents (Or Canadian if it is Star Gate or Andromeda!) and are allhumanoid in shape!

    Even "historical" shows ( and I use the word historical in the loosest sense) such as " Hercules" and "Xena" - filmed in NZ with a majority of Kiwi actors yet they STILL have American accents and are speaking, of course, in English.

    English is the Universal language of television so you just have to let these things pass.....

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  • Avatar of archangelwho


    [4]Jul 15, 2012
    • member since: 07/13/05
    • level: 19
    • rank: Fall Guy
    • posts: 2,501

    Star Terk, Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxyand Doctor Who addressed this so you can carry over to this show. As a child I just felt they did it so the viewers could understand. It was not that big of a deal. Combat did the same where there were times the Germans spoke German and other times didn't.

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  • Avatar of RabbitEars54


    [5]Nov 2, 2014
    • member since: 07/31/14
    • level: 4
    • rank: Thighmaster
    • posts: 2

    Mad Magazine solved the translator problem rather well with their 'Where Eagles Dare' parody. When the Germans spoke to each other, it was "German-German". When Richard Burton or Clint Eastwood spoke to a German [in plain unvarnished English without even a German accent] it was "American-German".

    The explanation my older brother gave me at the time was that they leaped..err, jumped (sorry, wrong show) into recently deceased folks. That sounds more than a little icky; but it satisfied me at the time and kept me from asking him more questions.

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