When my Swedish was good enough, about six months ago, I started watching TV to train my new language. My level at the time was pretty limited unless I had Swedish subtitles to follow along, which required my full attention. I wanted something passive to listen to while I did other things. So, I started watching cartoons.
Sweden is one of those countries that doesn’t do a lot of dubbing – except when it comes to the younger audience who hasn’t yet learned English – which means cartoons are in Swedish.
Some cartoons have the same name, but most use a Swedish title and character names. Sometimes these names are direct translations, which aren’t interesting enough to mention. These are a little different; sometimes the translation is just off, other times it’s completely replaced by something seemingly random. It’s fun to see the proper names change from American names to Swedish names.
Mickey Mouse: Musse Pigg
Minnie Mouse: Mimmi Pigg
(Especially interesting because “pigg” does not mean mouse or pig, but ” alert”)
Goofy: Jan Långben – Jan Long Legs
Donald Duck: Kalle Anka (Anka = Duck)
Daisey Duck: Kajsa Anka
Donald Duck/Kalle Anka is a huge deal here in Sweden, especially around Christmas time. Not only will you always find Donald Duck (not mickey mouse) comics in stores all year round, but it is a Christmas tradition to watch Kalle Anka every year.
Ducktales: Ankliv – Duck life
Huey Dewey and Louie: Knatte, Fnatte, Tjatte
Scrooge Mc Duck: Joakim VonAnka (Von Duck)
Sometimes the text stays the same but the theme song is in Swedish, keeping to the same beat:
Talespin: Luftanshjältar – The Heroes of the Sky
Chip n’ Dale: Piff och Puff
Rescue Rangers: Räddningspatrullen – The Saving Patrol
The Carebears: Krambjörnarna – The Hug Bears
Popeye: Karl Alfred
Cinderella: Askungen – The Ash Child
Fox and the Hound: Micke och Molley
Calvin and Hobbes: Kalle och Hobbe
Bugs Bunny: Snurre Sprätt
The Road Runner: Hjulben – Wheel legs
Wile E Coyote: Gråben – Grey legs
Batman: Läderlappen – Leather patch
Superman: Stålmannen – The Steel man
Aside from the intro songs being changed, which didn’t phase me that much, naturally each character has a new unrecognizable voice (especially if you don’t understand the language, in which case – listen to some swedish!):
If you are looking for an authentic Swedish cartoon though (which you should!), then your looking for Bamse, “The worlds strongest bear.” If you live in Sweden, you need to know about Bamse.
Through adventures to help others with the company of his friends and boost in strength by eating magical honey his grandmother makes, Bamse teaches moral values, like kindness, equality and responsibility through real life issues, while still being the most popular cartoon in Sweden. The television clips are from 1972, but the comic books that started being printed in 1973 are still being printed today. Read more about the beloved Swedish classic HERE.
Just a little something fun for a Saturday post – might be helpful for anyone moving here with kids! (Also, I do still find them fun to watch myself for practice …really just a good excuse to sit on the couch and watch cartoons all day)