August 18th, 2005


Comics & cartoons: Japanese cultural differences?

I recently asked this on a graphic novels listserv I'm on, but I thought I'd throw it open to y'all, too.

When discussing manga and anime, much is made about cultural differences between Japan and the U.S. However, every example I've heard of such differences has been something considered acceptable or at least commonplace in Japan that may often raise eyebrows in the U.S. or outside of Japan in general (or would cause conservative parents to cover their children's eyes and go on a rampage). For example, children of different genders bathing together, old men who lust after women's panties, and young teenage girls who attend parties as the escort of older men in exchange for money or gifts.

What are some examples of situations that might be commonly found and culturally accepted in current U.S./U.K./Canada/etc. graphic novels or cartoons that would be considered similarly offensive by Japanese readers/viewers? (Other than the obvious "incorrect/racist depiction of Japan or Japanese people" that's true for most comics/cartoons set in any country other than where the creator is from.)

Feudalism: Serf & Turf