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The famous quote.

You spoony bard! is a quote from Final Fantasy IV, and is one of the best-known and recognized quotes in the Final Fantasy series and gaming. Famous for its outright silliness and used as an example of poor translations, it has entered popular culture and been referred to outside the Final Fantasy fandom. The line itself is spoken by Tellah as an insult to Edward Chris von Muir.


Spoiler warning: Plot and/or ending details follow. (Skip section)

Tellah is on a journey to Damcyan to recover his daughter, Anna, who eloped to the kingdom with a bard (Edward in disguise) against Tellah's wishes. Upon Tellah, Cecil, and Rydia arriving at Damcyan, the castle is bombed by the Red Wings airship fleet. In the castle's throne room, the three find Anna lying mortally wounded. When the bard steps into the room Tellah flies into a rage and attacks him, shouting various insults, including, "You spoony bard!"

Spoilers end here.

The original English translation of Final Fantasy IV for the SNES is often misattributed to Ted Woolsey. Woolsey is known for his work translating Final Fantasy VI, where similar silly and nonsensical lines, such as "son of a submariner!", were used. However, the translation of Final Fantasy IV is credited to Kaoru Moriyama, K. Okahisa, and H. Takahashi. The word "spoony" means "enamored in a silly or sentimental way". Thus, Tellah's usage of the word to refer to Edward is apt at describing Edward's actual character, but the term is considered archaic, and Tellah's use of such a mild insult given his anger is unlikely. Additionally, Tellah's impression of Edward at this point was of a simple bard who had manipulated Anna into eloping with him, not someone who was foolish and genuinely loved her.

The size of the battle dialogue box and concerns over censorship by Nintendo of America likely influenced the words used; Japanese writing systems use fewer characters than English to construct sentences, meaning Tellah's dialogue had to be truncated (as with dialogue throughout the Super NES localization of Final Fantasy IV), and usage of curse words or other harsher insults may not have been permitted at the time.

Other appearances[]

The line has become so well-known, it has been kept in all the remakes of Final Fantasy IV when most of the rest of the script has been retranslated. In the Nintendo DS release, "Tom Retranslattery" in the Developer's Office comments on the line being kept after re-translation: "The Sand Ruby wasn't a ruby and the Twin Harp, as it were, was no harp at all. Turns out the bard really was spoony though—we checked!"

Various other Final Fantasy titles refer to the line as well:

  • In Final Fantasy IV: The Complete Collection, in Edward's Tale in Final Fantasy IV: The After Years, Tellah calls out "Can't even tell that, you spoony bard?" to Edward when his spirit appears to him in Kaipo.
  • In Final Fantasy X, after the Warrior Monks have taken over guard duties in Luca, a man wearing a green tunic walks around in the circle area with egresses to the stairs and the cafe (where the little girl with the red balloon is). He says that he asked out a Warrior Monk girl in the cafe, but she called him a "spoony bard".
  • In Final Fantasy XI, during the quest "The Pickpocket", speaking to Rodaillece in Northern San d'Oria will reveal that the thief called him a "spoony bard". Also, one of the default names randomly assigned to a creature raised in the Monster Rearing element of the game is "SpoonyBard".
  • In Final Fantasy XII in Rabanastre, just outside Migelo's Sundries, a bangaa talks of his seeq friend counting things (originally cobblestones). At one point he says this: "My friend says that o'er 430 revelers came through the Southern Plaza during the big fete! But even if you count the bards... 'Course, he could be countin' the spoony bards, too. That would be another matter altogether."
  • Wiegraf Folles utters "No spoony bard could spin a sweeter tale!" during the battle at Fovoham Windflats in Final Fantasy Tactics: The War of the Lions.
  • There also exists an errand called "The Spoony Bard" in Final Fantasy Tactics where the player characters must deliver letters between Edward the bard and Anna.
  • In Dissidia 012 Final Fantasy, Kefka says "I've decided to help that spoony bard," in reference to assisting Kuja, albeit more in terms of exposing his Chaos affiliations as revenge for Kuja breaking Kefka's control over Terra.
  • At the beginning of the Bard quest Bard's-eye View, in Final Fantasy XIV, the quest giver Jehantel Fointeaume says "Call me a spoony bard, but as a man in the winter of his years, it gives me great joy to observe an adventurer in the spring of his/hers". The minion depicting Edward from Final Fantasy IV is also called Spoony Bard.
  • In Final Fantasy Record Keeper, Edward's Level 99 Record Materia is called "Spoony Bard" and boosts the physical damage the character deals when they are equipped with an instrument.
  • In World of Final Fantasy, the bestiary entry for Behemoth states its Heavy Counter "is enough to make even the spooniest bard sorry he swung his lute".
  • The unnamed bards in Lostwing (who sings about "Dion the Bold") and Cid's Hideaway (who sings about Clive's adventures) are termed simply "Spoony Bard"; the hideaway bard is later named as Lukahn Larksong.

Outside Final Fantasy[]

Ace Attorney Trials and Tribulations - Spoony Bard

Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney: Trials and Tribulations.

Though it is largely an in-joke to English-speaking fans, numerous other references to the line have sprung up in popular culture.

  • In the English version of Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney: Trials and Tribulations the Judge exclaims, "I-I'm a spoon!? I'm no spoony bard, I'll have you know!" during the Bridge to the Turnabout episode. The translator, Alexander O. Smith, who also translated a few Final Fantasy games, has stated in an interview that he tries to sneak "spoony bard" into all the games he translates.
  • The webcomic Adventurers!, which parodies the tropes and genre conventions of JRPGs including Final Fantasy, has a character almost call the resident bard a spoony bard in this strip. The use of the term "spoony" as a curse word then becomes a running gag.
  • The video game music group The Spoony Bards is named after the catchphrase.
  • In the fan-translated Musashi no Bouken (The Adventures of Musashi), a soothsayer's assistant asks "Where is that spoony bard? He's dreamy..."
  • In the English version of Trinity Universe, Kanata tries to figure out what a Prinny is and asks, "Then can you demonstrate any special skills? Like, fire a sexy beam, use magic on spoony bards, or... like... eat worlds?"
  • In the popular Internet game AdventureQuest, a Thug in the Assassin class training quests can sometimes call the player a "spoony zard", referring to this quote, as well as a race of enemies within the game.
  • On the website TV Tropes, the trope Quirky Bard, referring to the bard being a weak class in many RPGs, was formerly named "Spoony Bard", and depicted Tellah shouting the line at Edward.
  • In Kingdom Rush: Frontiers during the final battle, the main antagonist will shout various insults at the player, including, "You spoony bard!"
  • In Guardian Cross, a mobile game also by Square Enix, some of the quests are requested by "Spoony Bard".
  • Video game and movie reviewer Noah Antwiler uses the name "The Spoony One" and, when it was still up, called his website The Spoony Experiment. Antwiler has stated that the name is taken from his Dungeons & Dragons bard character "Tandem the Spoony", who in turn was inspired by Edward and the Final Fantasy IV line.


The following is a transcript of the conversation in the original Super Famicom release of Final Fantasy IV.

original: きさま あの時の吟遊詩人! きさまのせいでアンナは!
literal: You! You're that damn bard! Because of you, Anna's...! (The word used for both instances of "you" is "kisama", the single rudest way to say "you" in Japanese. Because of its harshness, "kisama" is somewhat akin to "you bastard" or "you son of a bitch" in English.)
SNES: You're the bard! You did this to her!
original: きさま よくも娘を・・・・
literal: How dare you do this to my daughter... (Again, "kisama" is used for "you".)
SNES: You swindler!
original: ちがうんです!
literal: It's not like that!
SNES: Please! Listen!
original: なにがちがうと いうのだ!
literal: How the hell could it not be like that!?
SNES: You spoony bard!

Other scripts[]

The dialogue was considerably shortened for all subsequent releases of Final Fantasy IV. Tellah cries "You spoony bard!" at the beginning of the cinematic battle with Edward, rather than at the end. The rest of the fight proceeds much as the original Japanese dialogue in the SNES release.

Tellah: You! You're that bard!!
Edward: No! Wait!
Tellah: DIE!
Edward: P-Please! Listen!
Tellah: SHUT UP!
Edward: Forgive me! Please!
Tellah: Take this!!
Edward: Aaagh!
Anna: Father! Stop!
Tellah: You! You're that bard! Anna ran away because of your treachery!
Tellah: You spoony bard!
Edward: No, wait!
Tellah: Die!
Edward: P-Please! Listen!
Tellah: Shut up!
Edward: Forgive me, please!
Tellah: Take this!
Edward: Agh!
Anna: Edward! Father! Stop!
3D releases:
Tellah: You—you're that bard! You're the one responsible for this!
Tellah: You spoony bard!
Edward: Please, things are not as you believe!
Tellah: I see quite well how they are!
Edward: I beg you, hear my words!
Tellah: Choke on your words!
Edward: Please, I implore you!
Tellah: Know this pain—Anna's pain!
Edward: But, Anna and I-
Anna: Edward, Father, please stop this.
Complete Collection:
Tellah: You! You're that bard! Anna ran away because of your trickery!
Tellah: You spoony bard!
Edward: No! Wait!
Tellah: Die!
Edward: P-Please! Listen!
Tellah: Shut up!
Edward: Forgive me! Please!
Tellah: Take this!
Edward: Agh!
Anna: Father! Stop!
Pixel Remaster:
Tellah: You! You're that bard! Anna ran away because of you!
Tellah: You spoony bard!
Bard: No! Wait!
Tellah: Die!
Bard: P-please! Listen!
Tellah: Shut up!
Bard: Forgive me! Please!
Tellah: Take this!
Bard: Ouch!
Anna: Father! Stop!


External links[]