Posts Tagged ‘sex vs gender’

Manga Review: 「大奥」(Ōoku:The Inner Chambers), Vol. 1


Although a friend of mine had suggested I read 「男女逆転大奥」(Ōoku: The Inner Chambers) back in May, I didn’t really get the Ōoku fever till August, when I went to see my first movie in a theater in Japan. (For 1700 yen–and that is why I will probably stop at three movies while here.) On the cover of the movie magazine you get with your ticket was a photo of a man and woman in period clothing, which I thought nothing of till I opened the magazine to this page:



“This is the Shogun. This is her retainer,” it read.

Well, sign me up!

I saw the movie in November, and I finally read the first volume of the manga in December. I loved the movie, but because I’m not accustomed to the non-contemporary language—the Japanese equivalent of Shakespearean English—I had a little trouble on the finer points of the film. I was really worried that the manga would be too difficult for me, but after looking up some of the words (thank god for Japanese-Japanese dictionaries), I actually got through it in a reasonable amount of time.

There are spoilers here for the film and the manga. This refers to the Japanese version,  not from the official English version form Viz.


Read Full Post »

Doctor Heteronormative would be a BITCHIN name for the main villain dude.

-Jeph Jacques

With all the talk of herbivore men, pushy women, and linguistic gender-screwups in the air lately, the summer-fall season of Japanese dramas has been surprisingly supportive of non-conformity to the heteronormative cultural expressions of gender.* In particular, I’ve been really impressed with「派遣のオスカル」Haken no Oscar, which translates to something like Lady Oscar Works Temp or Lady Oscar, Temp Worker, and 「オトメン 乙男」Otomen, which doesn’t really translate so well (more on this later).


Read Full Post »