golyplot wrote:In Violet Evergarden ep5, I noticed that Princess Charlotte always said watakushi instead of watashi. Presumably that's an old fashioned and more formal version of watashi? I don't think I've seen it before, but I guess I haven't watched anything where it would have come up before either. I guess maybe the royalty in The Dragon Prince or Canon Busters might have been expected to say stuff like that.
I wouldn't exactly call it "old fashioned" since it's very much normalized in the business world and other formal contexts. If anything I would expect fictional royalty to use some more exotic phrasing, but I guess it fits with the show's setting being inspired by post WW1 Europe instead of an era with heavier associations with fantasy and tales of chivalry.
golyplot wrote:Also, this morning, I (re)watched the song U+I from K-On! with subtitles. I noticed that in the last line, Yui uses the imperative form towards her feelings. (思いよ届け). It's funny because all the grammar guides say that the imperative form is rude and rarely used, but it seems to come up pretty often in practice! I guess they just don't want Japanese learners to use it and offend people.
I'd say the imperative is still used less commonly in Japanese than in most European languages - for example it's nowhere near as common in Japanese advertising slogans than in English ones (which probably explains why so many English advertising slogans by Japanese companies contain the word "let's"). But yeah, song lyrics are a bit of a world of their own when it comes to language usage: see also the near-universal pronunciation of 行く as ゆく instead of いく, the use of ぼく by female singers to refer to themselves as well as the use of きみ for addressing a person who is supposed to be close to the singer.
One thing I noticed about the use of the imperative only after I started working in Japanese is how normalized its use is in reported speech, when talking about things said by people from both inside and outside the organization. At first it was more than a little jarring to hear someone summarize a very polite and proper business letter from a counterpart as essentially "they said 'send us the documents until the end of the month or else'"