ボンボン[bonbon]

August 13, 2007 at 8:47 am (slang)

 If you look at any bishounen anime, you would absolutely find at least one boy who is extremely well-bred and posh(sometimes a bit snobbish). Yes, he is 王子様[ouji-sama,"prince"] or simply 王子[ouji]. Know 王子様 does not even necessarily mean he is a son of a noble. But if he is just well-bred and rich, he would not be so attractive, especially in otome games or shoujo manga. Probably, he has to be good at sports or playing instruments better than anybody else. Or else, he has to be so smart that any girls could be attracted(needless to say, he must be handsome for sure).

 So we have this term, ボンボン[bonbon] . Though it’s not clear how this term came up with, please know this is a slang. It means a posh man who can’t do anything by himself, or doesn’t know how the world works. Or else, in order to ridicule this type of person, we Japanese say ボンボン. I don’t think we can hear this word in anime a lot because such posh boys are all regarded as 王子様.  And as I have said, this is such a slang that it includes insulting.

 Speaking of ボンボン, I can definitely think of Suneo-kun(Doraemon) and Hanawa-kun(Chibimaruko-chan) though both of the two anime are for general people. Well, I am not pretty sure how Amuro Ray(Gundam) has grown up(Is he a mechanic otaku?), but I assume if he were in the real world, he could be. If you have watched the old Gundam series, you could remember his remarkable line, 2回もぶったな!親父にもぶたれたことないのに![You hit me twice! My dad never hit me!]  Nowadays, fathers seldom hit their sons in Japan, however, a boy whose father never hit could exist at that time(1979 or so)? Believe me, in the olden time, fathers used to hit their sons naturally.

 Speaking of ボンボン, there’s one more similar term; 温室育ち[onshitsu sodachi]. 温室 means a greenhouse, and 育ち[sodachi] is a noun form of 育つ[sodatsu,"grow"]. Any vegetables in a greenhouse could grow up well, don’t they? In such a cozy enviroment. So they are usually more expensive than normal ones…See what I mean? Yes, 温室育ち means a person who is raised in a rich family. Know this term has no gender distinction.

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