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I have heard the following dialogue in the TV series Marseille:

  • C'est quoi, cette montre ?
  • C'est moi qui l'ai achetée. Pourquoi ?
  • Comme ça.

The literal translation ("like that") makes no sense here. The English subtitle have translated "Comme ça" as "I just wondered", but I have no idea how the former could mean the latter. Is there a more accurate translation?

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That's a correct translation. You say comme ça to explain there was no specific reason.

Often, pour rien is added to make clear there is no hidden agenda.

There is a different comme ça in the expression c'est comme ça that means: it is that way and not another.

  • Would perhaps "Just wondering" get the meaning across better as an informal idiomatic saying? – CJ Dennis Feb 2 at 0:58
  • @CJDennis Indeed. "Just wondering" also means there is nothing particular to worry about. – jlliagre Feb 5 at 11:01

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