Kio Shimoku, Madarame & Hato vs Akio Nakamori

Meanwhile, one more backgrounder thought about Madarame and Hato, in the wake of the suspense over Chapter 120 and beyond.

What if one of the meta-reasons for Madarame’s gradual, growing attraction to Hato Kenjiro, even for Hato’s existence was Kio Shimoku’s response to a decades-old torrent of ridicule directed at manga fans by the man who coined the term “2D complex” and first used “otaku” as a pejorative against them?

Akio Nakamori’s second article in the July 1983 issue of Manga Burriko (see Galbraith below) asked: “Do Otaku love like normal people?”

“No, otaku do not love like normal people because they are attracted to fictional girl characters”

103failed men bulg web

Read the nasty origins of Madarame’s 2D forever complex for yourself, in: “Otaku Research and Anxiety About Failed Men” by Patrick W. Galbraith

Oh snap! That’s inconsiderate towards those who read Hato as a trans-person. Kio Shimoku goes out of his way to make Hato blurt out Otoko otoko otoko every so often to muddy the waters. Read the article and think of Madarame and his character development, stretching back to chapter one of the Genshiken.

Long game Shimoku-sensei, long game…

LATER. much later: 

Here is Matt Alt’s 2008 translation of Nakamori Akio’s first derisive work of “otaku-ology”: “This City is Full of Otaku” on Neojaponisme


PROGRAM NOTE: Please check out the previous post, including the comments. It has been updated and added to; on January 30, 2016, (and again, more on Feb 01, soooo tired!) to more fully thrash out wither MadaHato. Lots more mulling over it all. Don’t be shy, please read and weigh in! Fan-mind assemble!

7 thoughts on “Kio Shimoku, Madarame & Hato vs Akio Nakamori

  1. Hur hur. I realise this is kind of tangential but, despite using ‘he/him’ pronouns for Hato in my last reply, I see Hato as a transwoman mostly without question. Because we we talking about the fact that naked Hato appears male on a biological level, male pronouns made the discussion less confusing from my standpoint as super lazy poster. (I’m not so foolish as to think that anatomy is never a factor in attraction, although it’s not for some people. Whether anatomy is a factor for Madarame remains to be seen…)

    Although, I still felt kind of guilty -_-;

    Well, Hato’s fictional, though. So even if it is reminiscent of those rude people who misgender real life trans people and speculate on their bedroom habits, it’s not really the same. Hato is the appropriate vector for misunderstanding/speculation, since s/he doesn’t have actual feelings to hurt, right? So I don’t think it’s really inconsiderate towards trans!Hato interpreters if you discuss Hato in the realm of masculinity, so long as you’re not extrapolating with absolutes.

    Kind of throwing this back at you, though, Muda. I’m not really sure how anybody can not interpret Hato as at least being some type of genderqueer at this point, if not completely trans. The crack-down on body/facial hair. Worrying about how s/he’s presenting to friends. Even Hato’s endless otoko~ otoko~ talk seems to drive home the fact that s/he’s trying to convince him/herself of a male gender. And then there was that whole thing where Yajima told her mother that Hato was trans because it was easier than explaining. Is it not comedic, to imagine a situation where actually being trans is easier than not? Easier in the sense that we’re actually calling things what they are? Again, I don’t know what Kio’s thinking. But, by any real-world standard, I think Kio’s gotsa lotta splaining ta do if he wants to assert 100% male Hato at this point.
    But if you see things differently, I’d actually really like to hear it 🙂

    • YEEEhAW! (You asked…)

      And so we land back on square one with “who is Hato” (what is ze, that all our swains and maids commend hir) Gender-queer for sure be they… in the sense that the Hatos are all over the place, destroying categories. Non-binary, to use the newest “don’t put me in your damn boxes” un-category. Female? at least when they become a girl, although if pressed, Hato would amend to “rotten girl”. Boy? sure thing too. Two-souled? We are up to 3 last time a count was taken and I could argue for at least 5 if the pitcher of beer in front of me kept being replenished.

      Author-demiurge-in-training? Fujoshi world field exploration unit? The Kaminaga-wraith of shame? Kio Shimoku’s Queer Theory Russian Reversal Hack, the female to be exchanged between men, but in this case also, to be “offered up” as a crossdressing yaoi character at a male, as a gift to the fujoshi social? (goaded by stands). A paper ghost; a character in a monthly comic fer-chrissakes!!! (What have I and many other fans done? Why have we gone crazy and given this shikigami life?)

      But also, a young gender-indeterminate chara who suddenly finds themselves in love with a flustered uber-geek otaku and runs headlong into how inadequate the whole shambling mess he/she/they have become is to the longing in their hearts.

      OH SHIT! The muse is upon me, I fear that this simple reply is going to get complicated, but WTF, I’m on a roll…

      There are also two more Hatos, the ones that no one will get to see, though traces of them show up in “those drawings”, and will show up in the stories that Hato has yet to draw: the “desires” of Hato Kenjiro, what lies behind Hato’s eyes when “they” fantasize HatoMada and MadaHato.

      Hato on the temple grounds, discussing the most important thing in their life and all that shows on Hato’s face is a controlled, resigned half-smile. Hato is really, really good at keeping his and her twin demon-angels in check. (And Note Well; They are not, repeat not, “the Stands”. The Stands are very stupid, or at best extremely limited and purposeful. Tease Hato with BL tropes for numero uno and throw Hato at Mada whenever mada is near, for the second) Contrast to Keiko, who exploded when her almost-proposal met with Mada paralysis.

      Warning!! Warning!! Written characters! Can do random things. Can turn into Godzilla and rape a freight train at any moment. Warning, warning! Pull up! Pull up! Crash immanent!

      These are probably the most important Hatos, because they are what has given life to the stitched-together shambling godling-monster that is Hato. They are a hellovalot more then just “want-to-fuck/be fucked”. They hold, keep and contain (and represent – character, remember? calm down!) all the high romantic, overblown, throw away-the-world-for-love, melodramatic urges toward expending oneself to oblivion, as well as the absolute take-everything-at-all-cost psychotic hunger that lies behind and beyond physical sexual desire: in other words, what Hato (must have, in order for his character to function) first glimpsed shadows of in the yaoi stories that seared and snared at-first-his imagination back when he found a smutty doujin in the locker room.

      (and/or kin of what Kio Shimoku once experienced and channels as he writes this tale- it’s an author trick, the good ones all do it.)

      (To be fair, this is an over-the-top poetic-license take on what those who study the genre characterise as the difference between BL, esp. the yaoi variant and “Bara”. You’ll usually see it as “a strong emphasis on emotional story-lines, blah, blah, blah in academic studies. I extrapolate from M.J.Johnson’s Aestheticism essays, among others. Kio Shimoku hints at it, but has yet to let it slip the leash. But it is there all right, otherwise Hato would be reading and drawing Bara and hanging out in gay bars. In some ways it is more “queer”, even if it is less “authentically gay” than the “real” gay stuff. This is why it travels so widely outside of Japan. (cf Dru Pagliassotti et al.), though Japanese consumption is still held to be at over %90 female. )

      Portrait of the Artist as a Young Becoming-Monster

      -CLICK! The trap was sprung. It wasn’t the pictures of man-sex. it was/(has to be) the “accursed remainder” that was left over when you subtract guy-made guy-guy porn from female-made guy-guy porn. I caught a glimpse of its sneaky cousin when I first stumbled upon Shoujo Sect – and if the survey respondents from the V. Maser study are to be believed, plenty of other folks caught a glimpse of the same ghost from that weird porny artifact as well. In the most important way; these “effects’, these ‘remainders” are far more “obscene” than the sketches of tangled bodies on the pages. They CALL. They hide and dance in the flames of the cookfire as stories are told around it. They have always been with us.

      As for the Hatos; call them Hato’s fantasies, (what lies behind and drives) Hato’s desires, Deluzian desiring engines, monsters from the ID, we all have one too, that “consciousness” we keep on a leash when we are in the sack with the one we love; because if it gets lose things will go south really fast. Wonderful horrible dumb wise things that are animal fuck-mind welded to the highest and most convoluted elaborations of our “selves” dancing with “the other” in our heads. Only the overwhelming magic of a real flesh-and-blood person breathing hard next to us can quell their howling.

      Oh snap, this is getting weird. Hato works, as a chara because it-not-real alludes so powerfully to these ghosts; the thing in our head that “bites too hard”, among other things, -ahem- ok.. Whatever; Hato is stuck (is written as being stuck) with two of them. Hatos draw them. Or they draw Hato. They, not the Stands are Hato’s muses. They are what goes hardcore with the HatoMada sketches and the MadaHato sketches because yaoi girls invented the method and the genre to allow their versions to romp freely, (with “dicks” even), in pastures green. If Madarame gets in the sack with Hato, they’ll be there too, as will be Madarames Moe-drenched loli/josou-molesting fixated version. “Despoil! Despoil!” (in a Dalek voice.) I wonder what Yajima Merei’s scream in the night?

      …That’s the fun thing about the Hatos-as charas; they evoke these subjectivities so well, in minimal brush-strokes. Thats why we give a rats ass and write too much in blogs, late, late into the night…

      But Hato’s are far more elaborate (or just elaborate enough…). Guided by the example of the fujoshi tribe, they have figured out a way to slip out of their prison and sneak about in town. Thank all the gods of Japan that they learned a neat trick: If they wear the towns-folk’s cloak of “hobby-fiction” and abide by its lore, they will not get into too much trouble, hurt themselves or others and lose their small freedoms, or their existence.

      How’s that for turning the post-Lacanian discourse of libidinized economies of self and the imagination into hungry shades? I blame Dr Tamaki and Dr Mizoguchi, and a few others. That party-pooper Slavoj will show up and knock heads if they get too frisky. Back to your pits! You are nothing but a manifestation of the failure of human desires to transcend the prison of one’s idiot “self”. You are a software error. Shut the fuck up and go back to sleep, or go to maintenance mode. Now! Or I will lecture you about Marxism!”


      One further thing about these critters bears consideration, for it touches upon biological “hardware”, gender vs biological sex differences and the response to these all of which the fujoshi tribe has noted well and worked with. It’s the old Tireseus problem; the guy hardware is limited when it goes off into sexual delirium-land. Tends to -ahem- end abruptly. The fujoshi tribes find this limiting; their avatars have been given female-like powers which allow them to stay in a blissful, delirious state far longer. Nice trade say the rotten girls; “we wanted symbolic absolute free agency, a dick of the heart, and you fools would be much, much happier (and perhaps less crazy) if only you got a little more fun while having fun.” If I can believe Dr. Stone, this is a concern for IRL transwomen, but better not go there – too many really angry fights going on IRL over stuff around that. Whatever, we have magic potions to help a bit with this, now. Just saying that at least one of Hato’s angel-demon-id critters “faces challenges”(/must be written as facing challenges). Fortunately, the Hatos (and his creator) are resourceful, I’m sure they can work something out.

      The story that Kio Shimoku is telling, the story he feels compelled to tell is how his creation’s messy pile of “selves” are all going to “drag themselves to the transporter room” (per goofy metaphor I used a while back) and integrate into a functioning, entire being. Surprise, we have a bildungsdammerunggeratfoothingroman going on. (shit! German module fail) If I read Kio Shimoku right, he’s going to be sensible and conventional about this and the impetus to -resolve- will be found in the gaze of the beloved. Who that gets to be is still up in the air, but one thing is clear: whoever wins the Hato prize is in for a heck of a ride, and a lot of work.

      Go that outta my system. Shogonai.
      Thank-you-sorry. -uuurmm-
      If you (or anyone else out there) want to add any more Hatos, please feel free.

      Gotta catch’em all!

      • I’m pretty sure I got an answer or fifty somewhere in there 🙂

        Just a quick note to say thanks for your response! I’ll be off digesting it for a while.

        • Ahem… Yup. I am fanning out a bit much. I must thank you for the continuing comments and questions. They keep leading to more questions, tentative answers and approaches. One further line of thought towards the Hato-continuum VS Hato-as-character puzzle just bubbled to the surface; or rather re-surfaced, as I was cleaning up/adding a bit to the last post and my reply above.

          Is it not a curious, even a forced mirroring and/or parallelism that fujoshi practice adopts male characters so that female practitioners can explore narratives of sexuality, desire, friendship, lust, violence, perversion, blah blah blah – the whole ball of wax, that is nominally denied to them as “female”?

          And then, the hato-as-character is created so that a male can insinuate HIS “self” into a fujoshi social and its practices? Even it’s narratives, its “headspace”?

          What brought this up was dropping a link back to an old post of mine when I did a clumsy impressionistic walk-through of the PhD thesis of Kazumi Nagaike, which would later become a very expensive published book: Fantasies of Cross-dressing: Japanese Women Write Male-Male Erotica (2012). In a later post I grumbled about the price, and the weird choice of title of her book – at first it looks like it drops theories of proto-fujoshi extreme texts/practice into the Ed Wood/ Takarazuka bin. The thesis suffers from too much Freud. Thesis is free, Book excerpt(s) can be read on Google Books.

          There is nothing about cross-dressing and/or transvestism in the book (or thesis). Her “crossdressing” is a metaphor for adopting a constructed, synthetic male-ish POV to wind up the male-ish “fuck-puppets” and then ascend to a god-author-distanced voyeur POV, once the characters are moving on their own, from whence to observe and enjoy the show (Warning, radical simplification here. and of course, male pornographers push female bodies around all the time, but most of the time are less interested in breathing any kind of complex motivation into “our” creations – and/or what the wimmens put in theirs differs from what we put in ours, etc., etc.) (Second warning: Nagaike examines proto-Fujoshi high modernist Japanese 20thC literature and the sex can get really nasty and violent. It was as if these women authors had something to prove and really went to town. Some of the translations, Nagaike’s own, are not for the squeamish.)

          SO, the fujoshi, and their social create characters that are a kind of a sci-fi “fantasy-male-sexuality-world-field-exploration-unit” for the women who create them/ put them on. Hato then, in one of “their” myriad aspects as Hato-fujoshi-chan can be seen as a “fujoshi-world-field-exploration-unit”.

          This doesn’t preclude the character from getting all bothered about sempai, but it makes things (more) complicated.

          Further Aside! What if we used a big clunky computer/operating system/emulator metaphor? Boys are stock Wintel, Girls are Apple. Did the Girls want to run an Xp emulator? No way, BORING, So they womped up something XP-ish using Linux and witchcraft – it has weird custom features they REALLY LIKE. So what if it is prone to crashing and locking up? Along comes Hato, intrigued: Ok, first set up a VM partition…

          Crap… That works within the story, but misses the whole point of real-world congruences between the characters and the readership. Arghhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!

          Best to avoid silly computer-OS metaphors. One other approach to the entire question would be to point out that it may all be beside the point, due to the (for want of a better word) subjective emphasis in Japanese tales that examine sexuality and gender issues. One forum poster on one of the aggregator sites noted that such tales, including one that was under discussion, were not so much about the public identities of the characters,but rather the interpersonal dynamics: “How would I feel if my best friend…. ????” And they run from there.

          “… Announced that he was gay and liked me?”
          “… Turned into a girl?”
          “… Was gay and turned into a girl? (funny story, handled sensitively, his boyfriend was troubled.)
          “… The girl he liked turned into a guy.
          “… His mother was re-incarnated as a car? (No, forget that one, too weird)

          All of these tales are relentlessly personal, asking questions about roles versus personal feelings. They dispense with larger concerns of “identity”.

  2. Well it seems to me that “failed men” as an indictment of all otaku is overdoing things. Some otaku may indeed fit this category but they may have started from a situation where they were likely to reject intimate contact as in the case of “Sheldon Cooper” a fictional US Fan-boy.

    The whole argument is built around assumed hetero-normative standards and misses the point that some people are naturally not inclined or unable to engage for various reasons in reproductive activities.

    In former times people were engaged with various religious fantasies hoping to actualized the possibility of escaping alive from this world of pain and desire, rather than engaged with manga characters thus escaping from the world. The behavior of the human animal is similar throughout our known history varying in expression as opportunities for that expression changes.


  3. As for Hato, at least he is talented while he walks the thorny path. And TG or not. his desire is toward women. Actually, while he may fantasize about BL with Madarame but as he expresses it real life BL is not at all like the fantasy or even the game fantasy of pregnant boys.
    Boys do not get pregnant except in fictions.
    Trans-sexuals (m>f)in the 1980s fantasized about getting uterine transplants. When they understood that this was impossible they adopted children with their life mates to try to put together an image of a family.


  4. Pingback: THE NAMING OF PARTS 1: Too smart by half | HEARTS OF FURIOUS FANCIES

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