And here’s another one!
Some notes about this ep and Dapp after the jump.
There’s a cockroach gag in this episode that might be confusing to folks who’ve never lived in Japan. Due to the climate, Japan is infested with cockroaches. In addition to infesting buildings, Japanese cockroaches also infest forested areas, and outdoor spaces like trash piles. Some species can also fly, and will do so if disturbed or threatened. Japanese cockroaches absolutely love heat and humidity, and are typically most active during summer. The problem can get so bad that there’s a Japanese website that exists purely to forecast cockroach activity on summer days.
We see a sequence in this episode, though, where Bykergang’s loyal cockroach Roachy is standing in front of a freezer door to beat the heat. This obviously surprises Zel-Modor who, like the audience, associates cockroaches with miserably hot weather. This is when Roachy reveals that he’s a domesticated, or tame, cockroach. The joke here is that Roachy is to a real Japanese cockroach as a lapdog is to a wolf. He lacks the hardiness of his wild relatives and has gotten used to the room temperature comforts of moden living.
So you may notice that Carranger’s wily mentor went from Dappu in the original translation to Dapp in the new one. Part of that was the translator wanting a romanization that could easily be worked into the character’s dialogue, like the other “speech tics” that the various Carranger monsters of the week have.
Well, you’ve also seen by this point that Dapp is kind of… wearing a hip-hop outfit. Back in the 90s, you would’ve thought he was dressed up like a rapper. While Dapp’s style seems to be a bit generic, his overall look seems inspired by Ice T’s look at the time. Dapp wears his Bulls jersey through the end of the show and still has it in Ohranger vs. Carranger, which was released after the end of Carranger (oddly enough).
So, it turns out Dapp’s name might just be a rap reference. Dap is another, older term for what people now call a “fist bump” or “respect knuckles.” It’s pretty old slang, and probably would’ve been in use at the time Carranger was filmed. The lyric “Gimme a dap, I’ll give you one back” occurs in the 1991 Ice T track “Ziplock.” Ice T was also pretty famous in the early 90s for wearing Chicago Bulls sports apparel, too.
So why would Carranger’s production team decide to base a character loosely on rap jargon? To be honest, I have no clue. I’d think the name was pure coincidence, if not for Dapp running around in the Bulls jersey for most of the series. It should be noted that hip hop music got rather popular in Japan in the early 90s, right after rap began breaking through into the mainstream American pop scene. Ice T’s discography would’ve been available for Japanese consumers to purchase at the time, too. A lot of Carranger is very “of its time,” full of jokes that specifically reference 90s Japanese pop culture and social trends. Dapp’s