Ecchi Review: Nozoki Ana

In my copious consumption of smut I sometimes find something I really, really, REALLY like. Among the tasteless escapades I sometimes uncover a gem or two or ten. Today’s carnal consumption is based on one of two fetishes that can get you a felony: voyeurism and exhibitionism. If you’re already a perverted person or kinky kind you’ll easily recognize these deviant behaviors (I say this with all fondness as a fellow deviant). 

Voyeurism can be described as: the practice of obtaining sexual gratification by looking at sexual objects or acts, especially secretively. Simply put: you get off on watching people without their knowledge.

Exhibitionism can be described as: a tendency to display one’s abilities or to behave in such a way as to attract attention. There’s also the psychiatric definition which describes it as a compulsion to expose yourself in public. 

This manga is kind enough to feature both for our viewing pleasure. It also has an anime, but we won’t focus on that today. Yes everyone, the voyeurist manga calls you–the reader–out on your voyeurism that you exhibit just by reading it. To prove the author right, you can read it here.

The Story

Written by Wakou Honna, this manga starts with our hapless every day college student Kido Tatsuhiko who discovers a hole in the wall of his apartment that shows the inside of the apartment next door. The next door neighbor happens to be none other than Emiru Ikuno, resident chronic masturbator and peeping Tom(ie)*. The short of it: Kido (inevitably) gets caught peeping and Emiru blackmails him into a perverted peeping game that lasts for…quite a while.

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The start of darkness.

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Sexy shenanigans ensue…LOTS OF THEM. So much so that Kido-kun fucks his way through all but maybe 3 women of the named female cast. Classic ecchi strategy where we have no idea why everyone likes him so much but hey lets give him lots of pervy connections! There is nary a chapter where someone isn’t getting naked or having sex. Granted, his attention is not completely unwarranted. He’s a genuine nice guy who talks and tries to relate to the people around him. Dare I say his only real faults are his inability to make quick decisions and set his own boundaries…which get crossed a lot.

There is plot to this; and it’s kind of difficult to describe. Emiru and Kido’s relationship is bizarre to put it into one word; fucked up if you put it in two. Their relationship seems co-dependant (and antagonistic) to the point where they protect their secret arrangement and each other on more than one occasion. The most memorable scenario is probably the chapter where an acquaintance finds out about the hole and tries to coerce Emiru into a similar relationship. Kido shows up just in time in a police uniform to scare off the perp.

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It’s a summer uniform in the winter time but the perp doesn’t realize this.

The manga manages to stay on the lighthearted if not dramedic (drama/comedy) tone until you get to Emiru’s backstory. Then everything goes promptly to shit and things get progressively messy. Everything comes to a head when the two realize that too many secrets can ruin friendships. Neither Kido nor Emiru are innocent characters and are deeply flawed and the manga makes sure to show that. 

Unlike most manga of this nature, Kido isn’t exactly your typical Generic Hentai Protagonist. While he seems to be at the very least, plain, he thinks about and considers the consequences of his actions and tries to do right by people. He doesn’t “actively” seek out scenarios but instead becomes trapped in situations because he’s a pushover and has trouble setting his own boundaries. He is able to abide by Emiru’s rules for the peeping, but he doesn’t put up personal boundaries (aside from the “not cheating on my girlfriend” rule). Because of this he ends up crossing over into more and more risque situations that cause more and more trouble down the line.

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And shit like this happens.

Emiru is a strange character in and of herself. A lot of times you don’t find women in comics who have voyeuristic fantasies, much less develop mutual relationships with other people who enjoy it too. While her motivations are screwed up and complex, they can be appreciated for what they are. Throughout the story Emiru is the only character who remains “honest”. She doesn’t cheat on anyone, encourage cheating, or seek to ruin relationships…yet all the drama revolves around her and her proximity to Kido. All of it. 

To post any more about the story would be spoiling the whole thing. It’s a must read for perverts and perverts who claim that they read it for the plot. 

 

Personal Thoughts?

Well…it is an ecchi/seinen manga so I like it based off of the premise alone. I’ll even include links to my Top 5 Favorite scenes (Zero context because you’ll have to read it yourself):

I appreciate this manga for showing us the (possible) real life consequences of voyeurism. Some characters lose relationships because of their prying eyes. Other people find love and work through their feelings. Some realize they lack a sense of self due to their obsessions. It should also be noted that everyone engages in consensual and non-consensual peeping but that doesn’t make it right! 

This manga also manages to hit you in the feels on more than one occasion. It’s always surprising to catch feelings while reading what is essentially porn with plot. I think that’s what makes this such a fun read that I keep getting back to. 

 There’s also the surprising trait of showing men and women in an equal light as well. Everyone’s actions are shown as being serious and assault is NOT played for laughs. While everything ends kind of tidy there is a TON of gut wrenching content between chapters. This manga also kind of gives me I”s vibes and I don’t know why…

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Another story for another day…

I have to hammer home a quick point that I made earlier: YOU ABSOLUTELY CAN GET CRIMINAL CHARGES FOR VOYEURISM AND EXHIBITIONISM. This stuff will stay on your criminal record and will cost you your jobs and livelihoods. If you want to peep, make sure the other person/group of people knows. Don’t film people without their consent. 

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They absolutely WILL call the cops on you.

 


*Tomie: One of my favorite horror manga. More on that some other time.

 

Dere To Believe Part 2: Yandere

Here we go again with another segment on anime personalities and why they do not translate to real life. Today’s model personality (and an EXTREMELY popular one at that) is the yandere and what makes them so damn appealing. Grab your knives and turn off your cellphones because she’s likely tracked your location and she is on her way to your house.

What is a Yandere?

Yandere (ヤンデレ) is derived from the Japanese word yanderu (病んでる) which means “insane” or “sick” and deredere (デレデレ) which means affectionate. Put those two words together and you have someone who literally sick/insane with “love” for another person and laundry list of problems that are only beginning and will, in fact, get so much worse.

The Yandere is (usually) a female character who is in love with someone who is often the main character. Since this is often a female trope I will use the pronouns she/her throughout this post. Her love is characterized by her willingness to do anything to prove her love to the object of her affection. And by anything we mean ANYTHING. Stalking, kidnapping, (attempted) murder are not stricken from the list. If she wants you, she will have you at ANY COST. She may or may not have a body count (dead or alive), several social media accounts, and maybe a burner phone along with diaries or a stalker shrine. And more often than not, she has a very cute appearance.

On the surface, most Yanderes are fairly well put together, likable, and unassuming and usually friendly people…that is until they develop a love interest. In anime they take the forms of characters such as the notorious Yuno Gasai:

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That cellphone is magic.

Possibly tied for first with Kotonoha Katsura:

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Something about a boat?

And then there’s this bitch:

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Anna Nishikiyomiya- Shimoneta

You have to watch the anime to get the full scope of why she’s terrifying. She’s played for laughs.

Through my personal observations and some help from Captain Obvious I’ve noticed that in spite of the very terrible things these characters do (Yuno drugs and kidnaps Yuki, Kotonoha kills her rival and her love interest), they still have an even more dedicated fanbase. Even though these characters are in dire need of therapy and commitment to an institution, the predominantly male fanbase goes fucking nuts over them.

Who is a Yandere?

Technically anyone can be a yandere if they get desperate enough. Get rejected “one too many times”? Can’t get someone off your mind and refuse to deal with it in a healthy way? Got entitlement issues? You’re a Yandere in the making and you might want to seek help?

Why is a Yandere?

Why are they like this? In anime they’re usually given a tragic backstory that gains audience sympathy. You don’t agree with her actions but you’ve developed an understanding. Double those points if you can see yourself doing similar things if you were in their situation. Sometimes they’re used for comedic effect like Juvia from Fairy Tail.

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She gets a little better…

Sometimes they’re the Token Evil Teammate who is only around to protect their love interest from anyone who is a rival—which is pretty much everyone who is NOT them. They are prone to wildly inappropriate behavior which includes (but is not limited to):

  • Stalking
  • Taking pictures of said person without their knowledge.
  • Kidnapping or paying someone to kidnap their love interest
  • Attempting to isolate their LI, usually done by spreading rumors or emotionally/financially abusing them
  • Sexually harassing/assaulting them
  • Stealing items that belong to said person
  • Continuing unwanted contact (creating multiple social media accounts to continue interactions)

And this largely gets swept under the rug because they are attractive. Case and point:

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Article found here.

I found this on the Facebook page Eccentric Weeaboo where the poster cleverly shares the events with the caption “Real Life Yandere You Say”?

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Also, fuck this person for calling her a girl. She’s 21.

The story according to Tokyo Reporter is a woman stabbed the man twice and was prepared to kill herself when the police caught her. I will not link the aftermath photo to avoid the squeamish aspects. I will also not be linking the comments that state the various levels of admiration and the *ahem* things they’d like to have this woman do to them and vice versa. I will however share this post because it encompasses my collective confusion at some of ya’ll:

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How are Yanderes?

The collection of “what the fuck-ness” that is my brain continues to baffle me while reading the comments on these posts. I’m not entirely sure why men are this way towards cute female characters that would in fact kill them to keep them. In the case of this woman, I would dare say that Japense fetishization plays HEAVILY in the roll of wishing to have a yandere gf, but that’s a post for another day and ya’ll ain’t ready for this.

As long as the person in question is attractive, all sorts of behaviors can be excused due to pretty bias. It’s a psychological thing where you associate beauty with goodness and your cognitive dissonance erases anything resembling common sense because you’re stupid. That’s it. Stupidity. Your stupid horny ass is going to get you killed.

While being a dumbass sucks, it’s kind of understandable. After all, a yandere’s obsession can often be seen as love to some people. And honestly, the appeal of someone being willing to do anything to protect you and keep your happiness in the forefront of their minds sounds like an ideal loving relationship–at first. Unhealthy relationship expectations, inexperience, and low self esteem are pitfalls that make people vulnerable to these kinds of people. And then there are people who actively pursue this sort of thing.

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I’m not here to tell you where to stick your dick, but I’m also suggesting that you don’t bed crazy or actively pursue it. The Yandere personality translated to real life is terrifying with tragic results. A quick Google search will turn up no shortage of articles on “spurned lovers” who “snapped” and killed the objects of their obsession and caused TONS of collateral damage as a result. I also understand that not everyone is like this. The comments sections of articles of beautiful women committing crimes is full of people who understand the despicableness of their actions and hold them accountable.

When are Yanderes?

When are Yanderes acceptable? By acceptable I mean “when are yandere’s seen as love-interests and when are they creepy?” There are two rules that are consistently followed:

  1. They have a backstory with enough audience sympathy to make their actions seem “not as bad” or justifiable/understandable based on their plight.
  2. They are attractive, almost to a fault. The ones I’ve seen in media are often quiet and unassuming, often nice or polite. They are pretty, nice to look at, and have nice voices.

In real life this sometimes translates and sometimes doesn’t. Female stalking (a stock yandere behavior) is often seen as a sign of mental illness and is usually unacceptable. This is explored in the video “Stalking for Love” by Pop Culture Detective.

There are several videos that explore this and similar concepts that get portrayed in media as positive when they actually shouldn’t and also happen to be textbook yandere behaviors:

Yanderes in real life are obsessive, controlling, and abusive individuals. Making multiple social media accounts to “check up on” or stay in contact with people who do not want to be in contact with you is not healthy. Threatening to hurt yourself or others is also wrong. The best thing you can do for yourself when you’re rejected is to back off and move on with your life. Some therapy wouldn’t hurt either.

Are YOU the Yandere?

Maybe you’ve noticed while reading this that some of your behaviors fall along these lines. What do you do when you’ve been obsessively stalking someone? What do you do when you’re three accounts deep and people have receipts? You’ve recognized your behavior and you want to stop it.

First of all, I’m not your psychologist or your therapist so I can’t actually give you the best advice you need to change and rectify your behaviors. I’m also not studying psychology or anything in that field so I’m not an expert on these things. The only thing I can do is point you in the right direction. So here are a few bits of food for thought:

  • Schedule an appointment with a doctor/psychologist/therapist as soon as possible. If you’re unable to schedule with a professional, the next best thing is to join a support group for people with obsessive behaviors.
  • Delete your extra social media accounts. You don’t need them.
  • Look for and practice healthy behaviors that will help your mental health.

Seeking help is your first step to recovery and developing a health sense of self and relationships.


If you liked reading this buy me a ko-fi sometime!

New Year: Blank Slate

With the new clone 2019 shoving the old clone 2018 into an incinerator we are now officially ready to start off the New Year right! And it seems we have a lot of things packed within these first few months alone. I’m personally looking forward to a few things:

  • Kakegurui Season 2- I just want to see gambling games.
  • Kingdom Hearts 3- Nomura owes us an explanation for all these games! And I ordered the Deluxe Edition!
  • 7 Seeds (anime)- A straight up depressing manga. Now I have to re-read it before the release.
  • Boku no Hero Academia Season 4- (I gotta catch up with the manga first!)
  • Fruits Basket (reboot)- Finally we get to see Rin!
  • My first Colossalcon- Will make a full post detailing my cosplays and people I’ve met!
  • 28 Days of Black Cosplay- You already know that this is about!

Meanwhile I’ll continue trying to find a focus for this blog. I hate that I have so few articles up and I’ve purchased this domain myself! *cries* I’m certainly sure things will get more interesting from here on out.

2018 Highlights

  • Playing Final Fantasy XV
  • Watching Laputa: Castle in the Sky
  • Playing/Beating Bayonetta 2
  • Playing Smash Bros Ultimate (when I haven’t touched anything SSB related since Brawl)
  • Watching Castlevania

I honestly wish I had written about all of the above when I had the chance but I didn’t. I’ll make it my personal responsibility to finish what I’ve started.

“Dere” to Believe: An honest look at popular anime personalities

Anime tropes are popular, no bones about it. You’ll often hear your local weeaboo tossing about terms they’ve learned from their favorite series one way or another. These tropes don’t just appear in anime but are standard for fiction writers around  the globe. That said, who wants to take a look at popular personality tropes and watch me deconstruct them haphazardly?

No?

I’m so glad you asked!

These tropes are usually represented by female characters, although they are perfectly fine for any and all characters regardless of gender or presentation. For the sake of simplicity we are going to use the pronouns she/her/they if that’s alright with you guys.

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There are four common “dere” personalities

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Clearly not my personal work. Give credit where it’s due.

 

As you can see; the suffix ‘deredere’(でれでれ) simply means to be loving or sweet towards someone. The prefixes just so happen to describe what kind of love that person encompasses. While on the surface as a flat archetype these descriptors are just regular categories to drop your characters into—which is harmless. They’re just characters.

 

But what happens when you translate them to real life?

I’m under the impression that people have trouble dividing fantasy and reality because I hear people talking about their favorite personality types (particularly when referring to their favorite characters) and how they’d just LOVEto be with a kuudere. I can’t help but wonder if they’ve really thought it through because these character traits are…concerning to say the least.

 

Tsundere

(harsh on the outside, sweet on the inside)

The Good

At first glance a hot/cold character seems like an almost ideal type. Harsh until you get to know them—not a bad thing, especially if you start off on the wrong foot. I very well could give this a pass and chalk it up to getting to know someone better over time.

 

The Bad

Ever notice how tsundere characters tend to get violent with the objects of their affections? Whether it’s full blown arguments or megaton moe punches, the poor person gets their noggins knocked. Then there’s the verbal lashings that border on abuse. I’m usually able to give passes on affectionate nicknames or occasional name-calling but the way Asuka treats Shinji is really unsettling. Since she spends the entire series unable to spit out her feelings and Shinji can’t read minds—it leads to a lot of confusion (the end of Evangelion notwithstanding).

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The view is captivating.

 

The Ugly

Well, as we all know (or should know), tsundere tropes are usually exaggerated and played (mostly) for laughs because *we all know that kind of erratic behavior is actually abusive and you won’t find love that way*. Right everyone? Of course nobody would ever think such hot and cold behavior would actually be attributed to feelings of love and affection (Italics for sarcasm and emphasis).

I’ve got some bad news for you all…People really think this works!

In real life I see this pop up in a lot of relationships where the idea of being hot/cold is seen as a good thing and is an appropriate way to show you’re interested in someone. Katy Perry songs aside, this hot/cold dynamic sends mixed signals and it’s a GREAT way to cause problems early on and ruin your chances later.

The truth is: tsundere characters treat their love interests like crap and are sending mixed signals that can in no way be interpreted as romantic interest. I’ve got nothing.

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Guys and Dolls: A Fear of Intimacy

As humans we are no strangers to the complexity of relationships. They’re complicated, they’re scary, and they’re (very) disappointing. So when it comes to issues such as miscommunication, pride, and fear…it’s no surprise when things fall apart and sometimes don’t come back together.

What does the above paragraph have to do with artificial intelligence I talked about in my earlier post? Read on:

Instant AI (愛)

If there’s one thing I’ve noticed in media (namely anime) when it comes to guys interacting with AI and computer programs it’s that…the interactions with them come across as strange. The AI in question are usually female and the protagonist is male and when they meet, the trope Born Sexy Yesterday comes into play.

The woman (AI, robot, doll, alien) in question is usually fully grown, naive, attractive, but skilled. The man is usually ordinary, sometimes unlucky in life or love or both. And interestingly enough…he’s almost always white* (when portrayed in American media). And the woman in question almost always seems to love him in the end. The trope can be explored more in this video by Pop Culture Detective:

If you don’t wish to go through the 18 minutes of in-depth talk I can give my abridged version:

  • Born Sexy Yesterday absolves men from doing emotional labor in relationships.
  • The idea of taking advantage of someone who is naive and vulnerable is inherently predatory.
  • Unfortunate implications abound when this trope can also be seen as a basis for abusive relationships.
  • This trope is used as a romantic subplot and almost always only shows the man’s perspective without giving characterization to the female character. If character is given, it’s known that she serves to be the love interest.
  • The woman in question seems to already love the man without any explanation as to why.

The reversal sometimes shows up in media. Comics and manga like Eggnoid, Absolute Boyfriend, and movies like George of the Jungle do exist but are rarely seen as the norm. I suspect the reasoning behind this is that women who are sexually skilled and knowledgeable of the ways of the world are seen as intimidating, maybe

So the gist I’ve gotten is that being able to be someone’s first and teach them everything without having to develop yourself or consider the other person’s feelings or autonomy is what’s passing for love these days. And people seem to be wanting an AI that is programed to love them and only them without putting in any effort to be better versions of themselves. Do people even know what love is?

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Baby don’t hurt me.

Relationships Are Complex

I’m not going to go through the whole trouble of explaining what makes relationships work because everyone’s seen the Facebook drivel that oozes saccharine sentiments on just how you should love another person. So, in order to not insult the intellect of the masses I’ll reduce it to a few fine points:

  • Respect: relationships can only be built if you genuinely respect another person as another person. They’re autonomous beings outside of you and don’t exist for your benefit.
  • Honesty: While respecting another’s privacy is important, a certain amount of transparency and openness is required.
  • Communication: Actively listening and working on your communication skills are crucial to maintaining relationships, you can’t ignore this.
  • Vulnerability and Emotional Labor: Close relationships require vulnerability and emotional labor to be expended on all parties involved. Taking another’s feelings into consideration and

People are Afraid of Intimacy?

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Honestly, the idea of falling in love with a program that caters to your needs is downright uncanny because I know that real relationships with flesh and blood human beings is nowhere near as simple or easy. Relationships take time to develop and there are no shortcuts to earning trust. You cannot cheat your way out of emotional labor and expect to have a healthy and happy relationship with another person.

The downside to all of this hard work is that it can easily be all for naught. Relationships change over time, failure happens, and rejection is an ever present reality. It takes a lot to trust in someone else because vulnerability can easily be taken advantage of, and nobody wants that. It’s because of this that fear of intimacy is understandable: we simply live in a society where people don’t trust each other.

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A simple Google search reveals plenty.

So, what now?

So, we have all this knowledge, what do we do with it? We know AI are no real substitute for humans (please hold all Blade Runner comments). We also know that relationships are complex, full of complex factors (anxiety, abuse, isolation, ect), and are generally messy with no perfect or satisfying answers that every single person. Is it worth it to try and connect with another human being?

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Artists certainly think so,

While we have little control over the things that happen in our lives, we still have the ability to control our reactions to what is thrown at us. We can’t control people or how they initially respond to us. All we can do is take our experiences—both positive and negative—and use what we’ve learned in order to better ourselves. Your personal growth as a human being is important because one cannot understand others without first understanding oneself.

TL;DR: Artificial Intelligence is no substitute for human interaction and relationships and you are encouraged to seek out relationships and to better yourself.