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Thread: Rampant misandry in anime: Don't know where to (re)draw the line

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    Junior Member McKnight is on a distinguished road McKnight's Avatar
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    Default Rampant misandry in anime: Don't know where to (re)draw the line

    A month ago, I continued watching anime when I went to the mall with my mother and brother, and bought some anime titles there. The first trip there, I bought Air (the complete series) and volume 1 each of Doki Doki School Hours and Ultra Maniac. Ended up not liking the last of those, DDSH was cracked, but I'll get to Air in a minute. Went back a week later to return DDSH, and bought volume 1 of Angel Tales (still have yet to watch) and volume 3 of Karin. It was also from there that I briefly resumed business with Netflix.

    Now, here's where I really begin: In Air, Hijiri orders Yukito to deliver Kano's lunch to her, threatening him with a scalpel if he fails to do so. She does this again during a conversation between the three of them for Yukito saying something to her (don't remember what exactly). And in Karin, we have the eponymous character's buffoon of a father whose wife has to keep him in line.

    These aren't situations most people would have the gender roles reversed in, which is something that really, really eats away at me (not the situations themselves, but the fact that they are presented as acceptable when they're female on male or monogender, but never male-on-female; either have it happen "acceptably" all four ways, or don't with any combination).

    So far, though, I'm able to tolerate this... until I finally decide to check out Dai Mahou Touge (a.k.a. Magical Witch Punie-chan), which I got for my birthday earlier this year. What that presents is not one, but at least three instances of female-on-male abuse within the first few minutes being played as acceptable. I turned that ---- straight off after third said instance (of a man being kicked by a woman). Unless I find out later that there actually is male-on-female slapstick abuse during the show (if that's even true), this is one show I am never watching in-depth, along with Love Hina, Girls Bravo, Hare + Guu, Bludgeoning Angel Dokuro-chan, and Baka & Test.

    The next day, I go to a library (not my own), and check out 11 Eyes. Judging by the cover and the summary, this is clearly a horror series; probably no bullshit like that, right? Well, I flip the ---- in upon coming home, and not only was this series never dubbed, but there's this girl who Wikipedia describes to always hit her boyfriend, including during the intro and very early in the first episode. I might've been more forgiving if this was dubbed, and if I hadn't seen MWP-chan just the previous night, but nope!

    Anyway, over the two days after that, I check out a few more titles from both my own library and Netflix. Doki Doki School Hours (a rented copy this time) and Ninja Nonsense didn't contain anything like that, but I ended up not liking them anyway due to stupidity. Bamboo Blade turns out to be pretty much in the green zone, Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha already is, Fate/Stay Night would be in the yellow zone what with Taiga yelling at someone for calling her a tiger, but then we have Angel Beats, Corpse Princess, and Nanaka 6/17. The last of those three had nothing happen in its first episode, but then I find out on TV Tropes & Idioms that it actually does present female-on-male abuse as okay.

    At that point, I've already had it with things. Anime for me is supposed to be a means for me to relax, and instead, it's been riling me up just a month ago. Even when abuse isn't involved, one would still be hard-pressed to find a guy get mad at a girl without her being able to stand her ground; I even proposed a trope about that, although it pretty much died out after two days. Don't get me started on just about all other media besides pornography (especially since this forum is primarily about anime).

    So anyway, let's take a look at stuff I've watched and enjoyed before, and of them, how either balanced or misandrous each of them are:

    Mon Colle Knights: On the one hand, Mondo has a habit of hitting up on girls, which elicits comical beat-ups from his otherwise nice girlfriend Rokuna. Rokuna's father is a klutz and rather goofy, and sometimes gets some slapstick from her as well. On the other hand, we have Batch, who suffers from bad luck and Tanaka Chuzaemon's comedic wrath, but only together with Count Collection (whenever he doesn't suffer alone, that is). And then there's the Knights' teacher Namiko Gokumare, who is very idiosyncratic and has trouble keeping a man (kinda like Jon Arbuckle), and also sometimes has different forms of slapstick happen to her. So, pass.

    Excel Saga: In general, Excel is a dumbass. In the first episode, Il Palazzo shoots her (twice) for her hyperactive behavior, to say nothing of the more than few occasions that he's sent her down a trap door. In the Cold Open (no pun intended) of episode 6, she's hanging from a cliff by a rope, unable to save herself, and instead of helping her up, Koshi Rikdo's character has a Puchuu cut the rope on her, sending her to her death. Later in the same episode, she and Hyatt fail to kill anything for someone living in a log cabin, and he takes Menchi in while leaving the two girls to starve. So, despite the way Misaki treats her (male) colleagues, this one gets a pass.

    Azumanga Daioh: Okay, so we have hyperactive jerkass Tomo Takino and the girls' immature teacher Yukari Tanizaki. That's just among the girls, though. The only important male character in this show is Kimura-sensei, who has a nasty fetish for high school girls, and is not subtle about it at all. This wouldn't be so bad if he didn't exist at all, or if there were other, more respectable male characters just as prominent as he is, but the way things are, one can say that this show is pretty misandrous. And yet, I enjoyed this enough to watch all the way through. This may have been a mistake, considering that Baka & Test is not getting any points from me for having a whole idiots' class have only two girls, who aren't even actually stupid in and of themselves unlike any of the boys.

    Ultimate Girls: Seven major characters in total, with a male:female ratio of 3:4. Two of the males are rather perverted. Makoto isn't as much, but he does barge into a girls' locker room to take pictures of a supposed monster when Silk calls Tsubomi an "ecchi monster". This may be one of the few times someone did that and escaped unharmed, but the fact that he did such a thing in the first place (not to mention that the kinds of monsters that roam Tokyo in this show obviously wouldn't appear in a room) merits him some negative points. Hate to say it, but, fail.

    Lucky Star: One of my all time favorites! Most abuse that takes place only happens in the Lucky Channel segments (which are at the end of each episode and not part of the main show, so one can easily avoid them). There is the fact that most male characters, while pretty respectable, are not as attractive as any of the girls, save for Minoru/Sebastian (although his eyes are always shut), but there are also clones of this one lady who could also be described as less than attractive (one of these appears as the waitress in the cake buffet in episode 9). So, pass.

    Kanon: Recommended to me by a friend of mine, for not having so many strappings that normally come with the harem genre. Sure, there is Kaori and Jun's relationship, and Nayuki does get mad at Yuichi for some stuff during earlier episodes but we also have Yuichi call Ayu out for stealing taiyaki, Makoto for the various antics she pulls, and he one time says to Nayuki "Eat or sleep. Just choose one or the other", while she's singing tiredly with her breakfast in front of her. Pass.

    A Little Snow Fairy Sugar: The Great Elder just doesn't learn that Ginger is not interested in him. There is also Phil's act of eating Saga's waffle from out of her hand during the first episode. That's pretty much it, though. Pass, I guess.

    Burn Up! W/Excess: Five member police squad, only one of them is a guy. Said guy is a lech and constantly beat up for his advances. The fact that Failure Is The Only Option for Rio does not outweigh this. Fail. Watched both series, along with the initial movie and part of Scramble, and I already have disowned the whole franchise by this point.

    Pani Poni Dash!: Rei punching Becky on top of the skull is not played as acceptable. However, her dragging Himeko by the nose, and in the next episode, Becky hitting Saotome-sensei over the head with a book, are. Most of it is justified, since most of the cast is female to begin with, so there isn't really an issue of abuse being only okay when it's female on male or monogender. Far fewer male characters than females, which in and of itself is fine. A few of the males are gonks, and Mesousa, the most notable male in the show, is a butt monkey and chew toy, but Tsurugi in particular is very much a bishounen and does not receive any real bullshit from anyone, even though he doesn't appreciate having to deal with airheaded Misao. Pass.

    That should be enough examples for now.

    Anyway, I have heard of the Bechdel Test, and am aware of the reason it was formulated in the first place. Of course, as we all know, that concept is a moot point with anime, unlike with movies. And, considering how specific my actual interests in anime are (i.e. cute, large-eyed girls; here's my MAL page to give you more of an idea), if I were to make a rule saying that a given title cannot contain any form of misandry whatsoever, I'd practically have nothing to watch. For me, that would be an easy enough standard to apply to any other medium save for video games, and cutting anything all about girls picking on a guy is easy enough the way things are, but if someone who has movies as one of their favorite media, the Bechdel Test would be pretty hard to apply, considering how damn few movies pass it. It would be like if someone who likes electropop music for the way it sounds decides to shun everything that's about either love or sex, which pretty much make up 99% of that music genre.

    Look, it's not that this kind of stuff happens at all. I understand all this stuff about how women's rights were an issue for all of history, but it's not like men don't have rights as well. My complaint is, if you're gonna depict something as acceptable, stop deciding which targets are acceptable and which aren't, and have it play out indiscriminately, or just don't present it acceptable in the first place. Rape, obviously enough, should never be played for laughs in any combination, unless a given show actively aims to be offensive. But, with someone getting mad at someone else, who in turn is barely able to argue back, we all know that gender plays no role in that in real life, so abuse or no abuse, there is no reason whatsoever why girls shouldn't do things that would get guys mad at them, or that there shouldn't be any scenes where guys do get legitimately mad at them without their interlocutor arguing back. There just isn't. (Yeah, I know. Kyon does get mad at Haruhi all the time in their own show, but she's an arrogant, stuck-up brat who doesn't give a damn about his objections to most of her actions.)

    I guess I may have been in a particularly sour mood after having seen what I had of Magical Witch Punie-chan, but would anyone here have any idea where to redraw the line as to what and how much of anything I should accept and where to pull the plug on something? Any ideas on how to influence things to change in anime, as well as in other media, would be even better.
    Last edited by McKnight; 11-13-2012 at 03:37 PM.

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    Default Re: Rampant misandry in anime: Don't know where to (re)draw the line

    Beginning, middle, end. Facts, details. Condense: Plot. Tell it!


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    Default Re: Rampant misandry in anime: Don't know where to (re)draw the line

    I read like 3 paragraphs of this and only thought...

    What AIR are you talking about? Because the AIR you described isn't the one I know lol O.o

    and like @Kaleohano said... too long, didn't read xD


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    Junior Member Timekiller is on a distinguished road Timekiller's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rampant misandry in anime: Don't know where to (re)draw the line

    TLDR: There's a lot of manbeating in anime -or- violence on men by women is a common theme in anime.

    Would that be a correct abbreviation of your post, McKnight?

    I am personally not really bothered by this, though I will admit there is a lot of this violence wrought upon men in manga and anime. Why would it? It's just one of many examples of normal comedy - the stronger male cannot handle the fragile weak woman that's kicking his donkey. I'm sure you can find examples of little kids abusing grown ups in anime as well. Same thing, and that's the point.

    Also, take note that anime characters like to take things to the extreme, just like cartoons from anywhere else. There are scenes where characters faceplant the ground hard in an epic facepalm, characters shooting other characters with guns for laughs, characters souls expiring from their bodies - this is all metaphor for what's actually happening.

    Example:
    Scene in anime: Female A slams Male B with a slegehammer.
    What it means: Female A finds Male B's lewd comment unnacceptable (and in real life that would be an angry stare)

    This is not Misandry in any way in my opinion. Male characters are way, way better represented in Anime, the women are often sexualised (for no reason other than to pander) or given a stupid personality (if any).

    What I would recommend is to stay away from anime that simply irks you. I cannot stand anime that is much too cutesey (Di Gi Charat), is harem (Rosario Vampire), has a dumb story or oversexualises everything (School of the Dead) to the point where I can't stand looking at it anymore. To each their own, I say. Just watch what you like.

    There are actually many anime that do not have abuse on males. Try Sword Art Online, Higurashi no Nako Koro Ni, Another, Steins;Gate, etc...

    You should make a post in the recommendations sticky at the top of these forums telling us what kind of anime you're looking for and we'll give you plenty.
    Last edited by Timekiller; 10-06-2012 at 07:37 PM.

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    Default Re: Rampant misandry in anime: Don't know where to (re)draw the line

    @Kaleohano , @Equilibrium , @AshureeChan , @moogoesthecow5

    If you don't have anything worth saying, or even have the 2 minutes required to read the OP, don't comment and don't waste our time with your half-wit complaints. The OP has typed out a thought-out analysis of a trend he/she has found in anime he/she has been watching in hopes of a serious discussion, and your responses are "lol, too long!"? If you don't want to join the discussion, leave the thread without your spam. I'm not sure if this is laziness, idiocy, or...no, wait, it's both.



    As far as OP is concerned, I think that this isn't intended as women hating or abusing men; most of the time these sort of events, like the scenes you mention in Air and Karin are intended to be comical. A sort of slap-stick, if you will, based off of traditional male/female gender roles - especially given how patriarchal Japanese society has been historically, and can still be. In a lot of comedy anime and especially those from the 90s, men were often portrayed as goofy and strong-willed to a fault, and the women (wives, girlfriends, childhood friends, student council presidents, etc., etc.) are there to keep them in line, portraying them as more level-headed. It's the same sort of playfulness that is portrayed in prime-time sitcoms here in the States, such as King of Queens or Everybody Loves Raymond. It plays into a lot of men feeling that their significant other has control over them, but keep them from acting out or behaving rashly in the manner of younger boys. In fact, the majority of men in anime of this type behave more like boys, likely to appeal to a viewer that feels they haven't matured or don't particularly want to mature. On the other hand, the women and girls are presented as being mature/adult already.

    I get the point of your post, and I'm well aware of the trend you've noticed, but I just don't see any particular problem with it - it's played for comedy and doesn't imply harm. I don't see it implying misandry or serious abuse at all. In that light, I can't really give you any serious advice other than a lame "get over it"; it's not meant to be serious, so don't take it seriously.

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