Japanese manga in particular has cultivated a global fanbase while pushing creative boundaries regarding representation. Pioneers like Takemiya Keiko and Yamaguchi Ryoko crafted yuri narratives in the 1970s that tenderly portrayed girl-girl affection, cultivating an early queered fandom. Meanwhile, boys’ love genres like shonen and yaoi emerged independently, generating unprecedented gay male visibility. Works like Junjo Romantica continue building international audiences by frankly engaging queer themes formerly taboo.
It would prove illuminating to analyze narrative and stylistic choices within such genres, tracing artistic evolutions alongside shifting sociopolitical climates. For instance, one could investigate changing visual vocabularies surrounding gender non-conformity and transitions in works like Wandering Son or My Brother’s Husband (Satonaka, 2015; Kizu, 2019). How do illustrations of intersectional identity negotiate complex subjectivities in sensitive yet nuanced ways?
Considering cross-cultural reception and fandom practices could reveal much about globalizing queerness. Platforms like Tumblr incubated vibrant transnational online communities thriving on manga appropriations and translations. Exploring community formations through this digital lens may untangle dynamics of inclusion, gatekeeping and cultural exchange that broaden representation’s reach.
Manga provides a rich unconventional text through which to interrogate identity categories’ fluidity. I hope unpacking its stylised disruptions alongside real-world activist campaigns against increasing intolerance proves a thought-provoking avenue for collaborative study.
Lately, there seems to be a surge in the creation of games that depict characters that identify under different places on the sexuality spectrum. Of course, there are a lot of differing opinions and very strong thoughts on showing queer characters in video games. That being said, do the sexualities of the characters really change the story of the game? Is the end result any different? Do they take away from the focus of gameplay? But in the end, why would the sexuality of characters affect anything within the game at all?
I think sexuality matters. It helps people related to characters. Perhaps there is an increasing amount of them in games now, because people are becoming more aware of these differences and want to continue to spread awareness. They may also be trying to connect to more types of people. A lot of hard core video game players probably relate more to outcast fringe character types anyway. Of course it changes the story of a game, but it shouldn't be distracting and should instead enhance its uniqueness. – Tatijana8 years ago
Sexuality in video games is a constant concept and it is a good topic to explore. Just look at the fighting games. Tekken is one of those games that exploits the female fictional characters in many ways. From their story lines, outfits and most importantly their sexuality. Sexuality can also be explore for queer characters as well. Not many characters in video games sexuality are explored. – jamarstewart978 years ago
The Dragon Age franchise is one of the first that stood out to me as opening up sexuality in romantic story lines, and I think this really added a lot to the experience. No it doesn't really affect the actual game, but it enhances the overall user experience by allowing for more customization. Video games have long been notorious for giving female characters hyper-sexualized armor and body figures that are far from practical, so I think depicting different sexual orientations helps draw away from this. – snlipkin8 years ago
It would be helpful to distinguish between increasingly sexualized visuals (particularly of female characters), such as in Tomb Raider, Soul Caliber, etc., and the way that sexuality has become part of the game play in many RPGs, such as Fable and Grand Theft Auto. – JLaurenceCohen8 years ago
I'm of the opinion that not every game needs to have lgbt characters, and just throwing them in there out of a sense of needing to do it doesn't really help. Sure in an open world game like Skyrim it works because of the blank slate character, but by every game just having the option kinda dampens the importance of these relationships. – brady6728 years ago
I really feel that regardless of orientation, sexual intimacy is something tragically underexplored in games. Bioware has made a lot of progress in bringing romantic and tasteful sexual content to games, but even then it's usually just the reward for a series of character interactions and then it goes to a second of buttshot and then a fade to black. The only games that I think really actually deals with the complexity of a sexual relationship in a well developed way is Catherine. Romance options have become such a popular mechanic in both eastern and western games, it strikes me that more effort hasn't been taken to develop mechanics and gameplay based on actually being in and maintaining a relationship, not just dialogue trees to seduce a character. – MattHotaling8 years ago
Though the plot of Sidonia no Kishi is generally your standard space opera, there is one caveat. The latest generation of humans aboard the ship are born asexual, and develop sexual organs as they build relationships with one another. Not only that, the protagonist Tanikaze finds himself in many unique situations: being attracted to an alien taking the form of his former love interest, and playing the father role of a gigantic alien / human hybrid, just to name a couple. What, if anything, do these elements do for the anime as a whole? Are they just glossed over and used as shock value, or do they add value to the story? Might this anime mark a shift in today’s mainstream anime environment?
While it may have been used as shock value in the beginning, the anime kept the "the viewer already knows this" attitude throughout both seasons. This kind of approach towards this detail in the world of Sidonia actually makes sense, since they're supposedly living in a far away future, where anything as initially absurd (like the bear cook) may be possible. It adds value to the whole world-building of Knights of Sidonia, which also succeeds in having its viewers undistracted by these minute details from the main story. – miharusshi8 years ago