The biggest challenge for the Olympic mediators was to say the word Gundam

The basics of Japanese culture are not always easy to embrace, but for an Olympic broadcast, one would expect at least enough to be able to moan Gundam properly.

This year’s Olympics were of no interest until one of the teams marched on to the music of the Dragon Quest games. From then on, I decided to watch everything, and while I’m not an explicit sports fan, I’ve seen fun races so far. Especially when I listen to the English commentary.

As this year’s fun takes place in Japan, there will be plenty of anime and video player links on the screens, which Western commentators try to pass on to their audiences, but don’t always succeed.

The BBC staff has just broadcast the triathlon, which will pass by the magnificent Gundam statue on the island of Odaiba. The English colleagues did their best to say the name of the mighty mech correctly, but failed to complete the task flawlessly.

Our man was somewhere between Gandalf and Gandum, which isn’t the worst first attempt if you’ve never seen a piece of anime in your life. More confusing about this is the perceived irritation our commentator had to deal with explaining what he saw.

We understand that the environment is foreign, but it is worth putting a minimum of effort into it once you are familiar with a new culture.

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