My column over at The House Next Door
this week tried to take on, explain and--I guess--unintentionally was the obit for Otaku
"No Country for Otaku" began:
Otaku is a dirty word. It is forever linked to Miyazaki Tsutomu, represents a culture that is uniquely and inherently Japanese, and will never translate to anyone else—no matter how hard Otakon or fans want to believe
Of course, this was mainly energized by Matt Alt
and his translation at Néojaponisme
of Akio Nakamori's initial column that would redefine otaku.
Lo and behold though, I got picked up on Gawker
, which ultimately confirms I'm one of the Creative Underclass™ toiling in the New York area. As for why I'm just getting to this now--well, I'm also tired and passing out after work most nights
Nick Douglas wrote:
Of course, there's a lot of room left for normalization, and most Americans seem to still view Japanese culture as a freak show. But eventually we'll realize that most of Japan's modern freakiness — humiliating game shows, gimmicky porn — are less Japanese than we think. (If you dubbed gibberish over some American TV and porn, added subtitles, and clipped the wildest scenes out context I doubt it would look that different from the Japanese culture we see on YouTube.) Japanese culture will become normal for all nerds as nerdiness becomes normal for all people. By the end of the synthesis, otaku will just be another part of the nerd in all of us.
..b..but that's wrong!
Otaku is associated with anything, any genre that one can obsess over. There can be lit-otaku, film otaku, food otaku--the possibilities are endless. And the main point being that to consider something "otaku" outside of Japan is just a lame attempt at co-opting a foreign term, especially when most Americans wouldn't demonize someone for knowing or living their lives around such a topic--even if they thought them a bit off.
Yet, with anything that isn't completely understood, there are always detractors. Like commenter and Gawker Weekend Editor Ian Spiegelman, who wrote
If only the Japanese stuff that made it to Youtube was representative of the most evil Japanese porn, I wouldn't be so very frightened at the prospect of mainstreaming that freaky-in-a-not-all-fun-way nation. It makes Brazil say Eww!
When I first saw that, of course I assumed it was just a joke. But then, it kept coming here
("I'm sure if I could use Japanese characters a host of snuff clips would fill my screen. Again, a fun Hello-Kitty society on the outside. A disgusting rape-fest on the other. If I remember correctly, they signed on to an anti-child porn international agreement after the fucking Netherlands") and here
Some would like to blame it on getting nuked. Most would recognize that Japan is the most suppressive and demanding 1st world society on earth. Squeeze people hard enough and you end up with a serial killer mentality that is everywhere in the culture. America thinks we invented serial killers because we use them as entertainment. Once the floodgates open in Japan, they will show us up as complete amateurs. When girls go missing there, no one seems to mind. Why? BECAUSE IT IS THE WORST COUNTRY IN THE WORLD AFTER BRAZIL. People know they can go there and just kill and kill. Their disgusting porn is just the first stop on a wild tour of how wretched that country is.
The rest of the world had to actually pressure Japan to outlaw child porn in the late nineties. Japan's solution? Pixilate pubic hair.
On a final note: I hate Japan.
On a final note, Spiegelman is an out and out generalizing racist. For some reason, Spiegelman assumes my column is about "Japanese porn" and that I advocate--in his terms--"rape media." Unfortunately, the shamed former Page Six-er
who will clearly come to beat me up at a bar? But honestly?"It's noy my fault that Japanese nerd shit is and will forever be linked to baby-fucking. "
Comparing all of Japanese culture and history to an Internet meme
from a guro comic [nsfw]?
And honestly, "They will not sign comprehensive bills to protect kids; they will not seriously look into child rape in their own cities. Japan is garbage. A haven for baby rapists even more fertile than Thailand. And at least Thailand is trying to stop it. Japan is not.
I hate getting serious, but Japan is a safety country for baby-fuckers."
I'm just flabbergasted trying to understand how this is inferred from my otaku column. If Ian or anyone else can enlighten me--please, do.
I'll just end on the innane statement
he makes that proves, if nothing more, angry racists never make any sense:
"Japanese nerd culture always leads to kid fucking. It starts with harssing women on the street, and descends from there. That's a large part of the reason why hentai even exists in the first place: to create rape-media that they can't be prosecuted for. But true lovers of the form won't pay for it if they don't feel it's based on photos of real acts. Hence, Japan is still being investigated and chastised by the rest of the world."
disclosure: I, in fact, like Spiegelman's writing and applaud him for fist-fighting Toby Young. But this is just retarded thinking.
Labels: clearly wasn't drinking, no life, otaku, SERIOUS FUCKING NEWS