Apparently Tucker Carlson never read our explanation of Japanese breast-related vocabulary.

In a video segment posted to the Fox News website on September 21, host Tucker Carlson commented on a high school teacher in Ontario, Canada, who wears a set of prosthetic breasts while teaching. Video of the teacher has gone viral, and Carlson asserts that the prosthetics are inexcusable for an educator to be wearing while working with minors, stating:

“That teacher has recently started wearing enormous prosthetic breasts in the classroom in front of children as part of a sexual fetish. In case you doubt that it is, the costume is intended to emulate a genre of Japanese pornography that translates roughly as ‘exploding milk porn.’

Setting aside the accuracy or lack thereof of Carlson’s assessment of the teacher’s motivation for wearing the prosthetics, as well as the debate as to their level of appropriateness for a classroom setting, there is one ironclad, definitive statement I can make here: “Exploding milk” is not a genre of Japanese pornography.

So what’s the reason for Carlson’s lascivious lactose linguistic confusion? The word bakunyuu.

Bakunyuu written in kanji. Also the most safe-for-work bakunyuu image you’ll ever find on the Internet.

The first kanji in bakunyuu, 爆, means “to burst, rupture, or explode.” It’s the same kanji that shows up in bakuhatsu (爆発), the Japanese word for “explosion.”

The second kanji in bakunyuu, 乳, has two potential meanings, and one of them is indeed “milk,” like in the word gyuunyuu (牛乳), “cow’s milk.” In Japanese, though, there’s a lot of linguistic overlap between the concepts of milk itself and its source, and 乳 can also be used to mean “breasts.”

It’s this second meaning, “breasts,” that bakunyuu is referring to, and so the literal translation isn’t “exploding milk,” but “exploding breasts.” That’s “exploding” metaphorically, by the way, in the sense of breasts that are dynamically, dramatically large, and so the more natural translation would be “gigantic breasts,” though if you wanted to be colorful I suppose you could go with something like “bazongas.”

Aside from Carlson’s mistranslation, calling bakunyuu a genre of pornography, ironically, diminishes the word. It’s like saying “big boobs” is a porn genre, while ignoring that the term has a meaning and uses outside of discussing porn.

As to how Carlson, or his research assistants, came under the impression that “exploding milk” was an acceptably accurate translation, it’s hard to say. Even plugging bakunyuu into Google translate spits back “huge breasts,” not “exploding milk.”

▼ Wow, two safe-for-work bakunyuu images in one article!

That said, “exploding milk” does sound like just the sort of thing an automated machine translation would spit back, especially a program that gets confused when it runs into a term that it can’t find in whatever static straight-laced Japanese-English dictionary it’s using as its knowledge base and just decides to translate each kanji separately.

That still leaves the question, though, of how Fox News came across the word bakunyuu in the first place, and why they chose to connect it to the story about the teacher. It’s not like Japan is the only country with a term than means “huge breasts,” and bakunyuu doesn’t include any implication that the explosively large breasts are prosthetics. It’s enough to make one wonder if someone who’d had personal experience browsing through Japanese adult video sites with the aid of some sub-par automated translation software stumbled across the “exploding milk” mistranslation, starting of a chain of misconceptions that eventually made it to Carlson and onto the air during the video.

Still, it’s a really weird mistake to make, especially since I explained bakunyuu, plus a whole lot of other Japanese words for talking about breasts, right here on SoraNews24 a long time ago.

Video source: Fox News via Anime News Network/Kim Morrissy
Top image: Pakutaso (edited by SoraNews24)
Insert images: SoraNews24, Google
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