A TV version of the manga Otomen is starting soon in Japan (August 1, 11.10 pm, Fuji TV), as revealed by this Omootesando billboard. The story centers on high school junior Asuka Masamune: manly man and judo/karate/kendo master on the outside, lover of caramel macchiato, shōjo manga, sweets, and pink things on the inside. Apparently he romances a (female) classmate by teaching her how to do girly stuff.
I first heard of this term from my otaku and moe language teacher Bangin. He prefers this term over “soshokukei” (herbivores). Otomen, he defines, as young men who like BL and otome stuff (note the pink flower in the billboard which refers to girls’ anime styles), who are skilled at domestic crafts, and who act manly in public but are secretly feminine.
Thank you, Japanese television. Anyone else looking forward to this show?
A frenzy of cellphone camera wielding ladies, young and “not-so-young,” were going crazy in the Omootesando subway yesterday. I was innocently going from one business meeting to the next when I saw swarms of women excitedly photographing these dewie images of their favorite Korean boy band plastered on the columns outside the fare gates. Two security guards, one with a bright red megaphone, implored them to not obstruct JR Metro passengers.
The band is called Tohoshinki, and they are 5 super-young looking Korean boys who are doing a two day concert at Tokyo Dome entitled “Stand by U.” I was startled when two fans explained that the band has existed for four years. I wondered if the boys, who barely look pubescent now, had started before the age of 10. No, I was assured, they are now in their early 20s. One middle-aged fan was there with her son, who looked mildly embarrassed. The female fans hugged the posters, vamped, and were completely crazed!
Later the same day, I saw a crowd of several hundred Japanese women lined up to see Korean movie star Park Hae Jin making an appearance at Shinjuku’s Kinokuniya bookstore. In both events, not a single male fan was present. I wonder if this female adoration for Korean stars translates into Japanese women romancing or marrying real Koreans. Or is this fantasy merely for “idols” and not for reality? Is it like Boys Love, a fantasy and displacement that is never fulfilled? I *almost* felt sorry for Japanese men.
More photos after the jump.
At Rem Koolhaus Prada shrine, Omootesando.