Plunge Pontificates

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Sunday, March 26, 2006

S. Korean, Japanese cartoonists splash around in sewer of hate

Fascinating article.

Let's take a look.

"No need for more apologies or compensation to South Korea!" screamed the cover of the comic book Manga Hate South Korea.

"Japan! Learn half of a half of a half of what Germany learned [from World War II]!" retorted the South Korean Manga Hate Japan.

Back and forth goes the comic book name-calling.

"South Korea is an unbelievably rotten country!"

"On Japanese TV cooking programs the women are naked under their aprons."

"South Koreans fouled soccer World Cup history . . . "
Pretty sophomoric stuff we have here.

The backlash began, says Asahi Geino, with the release last July of Manga Hate South Korea by manga artist Sharin Yamano.

The South Korean counter-attack came in January. Manga Hate Japan author Yang Byong Sol, pulling no punches, hits mainly below the belt. "Mothers take their clothes off to keep their sons from watching Internet porn when they should be studying," says one character, who adds coyly, "I can say no more."

Yep, pretty bad and puerile stuff. But the interesting part is next.

Manga Hate South Korea has sold 450,000 copies. As for Manga Hate Japan, "I couldn't find a publisher, so I started a company and printed up 3,000 copies at my own expense," Yang reportedly told an unidentified journalist Asahi Geino speaks to. "It sells not too badly. I myself took it around to the major book shops, who agreed to stock it."

That's a very modest success by manga publishing standards. But Yang's venom evidently stirred Yamano's creative juices. His Manga Hate South Korea 2 came out in February -- more of the same, but the Japanese appetite for it could prove inexhaustible. If the puerile level of discourse didn't repel readers the first time around (as perhaps it did in South Korea), it may not the second, especially if the more pessimistic social analysts are right about the conservative tide they see engulfing the country.

"I see in youngsters today a sort of radical conservatism alongside plenty of naivete," Hokkaido University media and communications lecturer Makoto Watanabe commented to Al-Jazeera in January, "and that's where conservative political parties are targeting their message and publishers aiming their books."
3,000, self-published books compared to 450,000 sold? Give me a freakin break. How asinine do you have to be to even discuss a book that has less that 3,000 copies out there, who knows the number sold. The most disgusting books of hate and vitriol in the US sell more copies than that. Yet, someone felt it important enough to write about it in an article?

And we have a 'book' in Japan, a book that, from the sounds of it, deserves a place along side the "The Protocols of the Elders of Zion" and yet sells 450,000 copies? Nope, nothing wrong there.

And of course, listening to those 'other' voices in the blogosphere, the Japanese Manga isn't one of hate, it just teaches 'proper' history.

Excuse me while I laugh hysterically at the article that tries to compare these two disgusting pieces of trash and that anyone could defend such garbage.