MSNBC: Anime is for teh Sex!

Color me not enthused by this article:

These cartoony, sexualized characters are all part of otaku culture. Otaku is a Japanese word that has evolved from meaning “techno-geek” to describing devoted fans who pore over Japanese animation (anime), manga (graphic books), hentai (erotic comics) and other comics-derived media.

Thanks.  It takes six paragraphs for the article to finally say this:

Of course, not all anime and manga is overtly sexual — a lot of it is meant for children. Even some adult anime isn’t sexualized any more than, say, Wonder Woman (who was created as a dominatrix bondage fantasy.)

And then continues on with the sexualized aspects of it.  I was thinking about ordering Otaku USA, but I’m not sure about that now:

“The appeal of Japanese pop culture [to Americans] is that it is a moral-free zone,” explains Patrick Macias, editor in chief of Otaku USA, a bi-monthly magazine with a circulation of approximately 60,000. “The ideas of good/bad, right/wrong, that duality is not present.”

Thank you very much, but I like watching my anime because it’s entertaining, not because it’s a “moral-free zone.”

Basically the entire article is “look at all of these loser, lonely freaks and perverts who wack off to cartoon porn of 12 year old girls getting penetrated by octopi!”  The article tries to approach the subject with moral agnosticism, but I’m not sure Mr. and Mrs. Average American are exactly impressed by reading that all these anime people enjoy watching cartoons of 5th graders getting tentacle raped.

Bleh.

Update

Apparently the author doesn’t know what he’s talking about either:

Lolicon” (or Lolicom, a combination of “Lolita” and “comic”)

Wikipedia:

Lolicon, also romanized as rorikon, is a slang portmanteau of the phrase “Lolita complex”.

Oops.

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7 thoughts on “MSNBC: Anime is for teh Sex!

  1. The problem here is either 1. it was badly-researched or 2. is playing the ‘sensationalist media’ card, or both. If I said that otaku culture didn’t have a sexual aspect I’d be lying but in terms of its impact on Western pop culture this is a pretty narrow and limited overview of the subject. Perhaps the fact that Alexander’s specialist area is contemporary sexual practices (judging by the topic of his book, anyway) makes the article so biased in that direction. I’m not sure Machias’ views reflect those of his readership either, which is a worry in itself.

    More often than not, this sort of article is either a piece of bad satire or simply an effort to gain more site traffic through hits and complaints from irate anime fans – I’ve seen that sort of thing in the past too.

  2. But sexually-suggestive and explicit anime like “Gurren Lagann” and “Legend of the Overfiend,” is finding an eager audience of adult Americans who are drawn to the post-modern, almost post-human mash-up of playful, blurry morality found in the genre.

    Okay, I burst out laughing at this point. I can’t believe he just compared Legend of the Overfiend to Gurren Lagann. He probably saw a picture of Yoko’s bikini and jumped to wild conclusions. Too bad he missed the chance to make it really shocking by informing readers that this “explicit anime” is actually a kids show that aired primetime Sunday morning.

    As for Macias’ comment I can’t speak about that but I can tell you that I’ve subscribed to Otaku USA and couldn’t be happier. I’ve never once read anything in the magazine that really rubbed me the wrong way so I wouldn’t write it off just because of one comment.

  3. Whatever it is, for a true otaku, Eng says, it is not pedophilia. “Fans abhor young looking [real-life] models,” he said. “They abhor real child porn. They do not want to be associated with that stuff.”

    At least it says this. I’m not a damn pedophile.

  4. news articles are just news articles. I mean, hey, they just want to sell what they write. mass media, baby!

    look at all of these loser, lonely freaks and perverts who wack off to cartoon porn of 12 year old girls getting penetrated by octopi! <– this really made me laugh. hehe. :) octopi! XD

  5. You gotta believe Mr. Macias was quoted out of context, or at the very least his statements are used to support conclusions he did not mean. I can definitely see this happening:

    Alexander: So what is appealing about anime?

    Macias: Well, the stories aren’t so cut and dry as most American animation is. There is MORAL AMBIGUITY.

    Alexander: I see! Please continue…

    It helps that Mr. Brian Alexander has all the deductive reasoning, informative knowledge, and subtlety of expression as a DROOLING IDIOT.

    Modern journalism at it’s best, ladies and gentlemen. OTL

  6. Mr. Alexander should watch La Blue Girl, so that he could better understand the true nature of anime. LOL! or maybe, he did watch it before, does he? XD LOL!

  7. @Ibrevis and Kadian1364: sorry for any misunderstanding! While it’s *theoretically* possible that Machias actually meant what he said to come out like that, I think you could be right about his comments being innocent ones taken out of context. Given the biased and skewed nature of the article as a whole, it wouldn’t surprise me that Alexander put a spin onto what he said or implied (I’ve not actually read Otaku USA so don’t have anything against Machias, in case my first comment implied that). Which kinda makes Alexander’s article even worse really…

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