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April 01 2018

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It's that day again, April Fools day! And this time I have a role reversal of a girl's scene! It's not exact, unfortunately, but I do what I can with all of my artists up and vanishing for some reason...

November 21 2017

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Sigh. My job will never be done. Just a few years ago, a no good, know-nothing executive put the hammer down and proclaimed "No Girls Allowed!"

The scariest words in the human language are "Think of the children!" Often times, these words are being said by people who know nothing about children, but think they know more than them. Case in point, a bill in Japan called for the end of "pornographic content", but was so vaguely phrased it basically meant censoring everything to the ends of the earth. When prodded about stuff like Shizuka's bath scenes in the cultural cornerstone Doraemon, the bill's owners said "that's an example of things that won't be censored."

So when a new Doraemon movie comes out and has a scene where Shizuka's clothes accidentally get vacuumed up, and her butt is shown in the process, you'd expect the people in charge of the bill to keep their promise and not censor the Shizuka scene when it aired on TV, right?

You don't know anything about politicians, do you?

Indeed, on the TV airing of the exact same movie, the scene was completely censored, completely blatantly with a big bright light that obscured just about everything, and I do mean everything. You had to buy the DVD to get the real thing. For those who don't know, this is the exact same strategy used by late night anime. Doraemon is considered in the same category as To-Love-Ru and Strike Witches in that their content has to be censored on TV. The only difference? Those series were for adults.

This is why we can't keep doing this. Despite all signs saying that this kind of scene won't be censored, it still is, for no reason other than it's a girl, as Nobita's numerous scenes show. What is it about a girl that makes it pornographic, other than the female body being "inherently sexual"?

When kids TV is given the same treatment as series for hardcore adolescent nerds, it's time to stop.

October 10 2017

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There's nothing scarier than some no good executive saying "No Girls Allowed!" But this time, not even a boy goes unscathed.

Another one with the Doraemon dub, this time the episode "Transform, Transform, and Transform Again!" In that one, Nobita drinks too much of a drink that lets him transform into whatever's on his mind, mostly turning himself into animals. He quickly loses control of his power, and turns back to human form naked, then later on for a gag turns into Shizuka.

Of course, Disney XD, despite just having moments like the last show, ended up censoring the episode for their version, "Transformade." Indeed, Nobys lower half is totally censored, and Sue ends up being covered in smoke. Worse, a very revealing shot of Shizuka is removed completely. I'm not even sure why this is allowed; because it's Disney XD could be one reason, but...

A lot of anime has a history of being comparatively censored in comparison to western cartoons. Whereas a cartoon would make moments of showing blood special like in Batman, anime on kids networks can't show it at all, like with Dragon Ball Z. The same goes for nudity; anime nudity is often a lot more censored than cartoon nudity over on kids networks, even for boys in children's cartoons. I'm not talking about the fanservice stuff, I'm talking about stuff Dexter's Lab does all the time, but other anime dubbed for children's networks can't do once. It's clearly not a matter of material being "too sensitive for children" since the situations are the same!

I'll probably have more on this later, but that's for another time. In the meantime, witness another failure on the broadcaster's part.

September 26 2017

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Ah, the rancid joys of censoring young girls on the basis of them being young girls. It's time to take a look at another time the staff stepped in to say "No Girls Allowed!"

Not too many people know this, but the most recent Doraemon series had a short-lived dub on Disney XD. The whole thing being so Japanese, it didn't last very long, and the joys of being able to watch Doraemon didn't last either, mostly because the whole thing was edited to heck and back. All Japanese cultural icons were removed, the script and music were changed, and heavier jokes were censored. It's practically as bad as the Saban/4Kids days, which is even worse because those days are long gone.

Case in point, in the episode titled in the dub "The Horizon Tape", Doraemon and Nobita, er sorry... "Noby" get lost in the endless horizon of their own creation. They stumble across Shizuka in a tub. That part was the same. In the Japanese version, she's taking a bath, as she tends to do. But... in the dubbed version, cowardice takes hold, as the bath is changed in dialogue to a hot tub, and "Sue" as she's called there is given a bathing suit. Because why would you want to do laundry and get clean separately when you could do both at once? Or not get clean at all because baths don't work that way, but hey, gotta protect the kids!

Now, to it's credit, I don't mind the edits too much. The localized tests are hilarious, showing the dubbers know all too well how ridiculous the prospect is. And if you're going to sidestep around nudity, changing the bath to a hot tub is a good way to do it. But my point is that you really shouldn't have to. Nick and Cartoon Network got away with this kind of thing all the time, and there's little in the actual episode that needed to be changed with regards to that. Not to mention Doraemon is already a kids show, and I mean for little tikes, and this is the censored Doraemon series after standards have changed and gotten stricter.

I'm just saying, censorship like this is unnecessary and should never have to happen under any circumstance, and if Japan realizes that, why can't we?

July 29 2017

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There's this one Shizuka artist I just found. He does his own take on certain scenes from the series. I think his version of the Waterplay scene is pretty good, capturing the essence of the scene with a charming art style. I'd love to see him do some other moments from the series, too. But then, lightning can only strike so many times...

March 11 2017

CONCLUSION - Where We Are Now

As of now, fanservice anime dominate the airwaves of Japanese television. For every One Punch Man, Attack On Titan, Space Dandy or other unique shows, there are ten shows designed to prey upon otaku to get them to give them money by soliciting anime girls for sex.

Shows made today seem to feel just fine with giving underage characters fanservice scenes, and even give them high levels of exposure. Series like Strike Witches, the Monogatari franchise, and Haganai give the same level of sexual exposure to adult women to at least one young girl character, complete with detailed nipples. At least one anime or manga per year comes out with young girls as the objects of sexual desire, such as Ro-Kyu-Bu!!, Fate/Kalaed Liner Prisma Illya, and Listen to Daddy! In some cases, not even very young children are safe from sexualization.

That was a far cry from the Japan of before. Previously they saw all children as being non-sexual, and would include young girls in cute nude scenes just as often as they'd include boys, with a joke about how curious the other gender is at what each other looks like. Nowadays the level of fanservice that involves males of any age is startlingly low, which is why it's always surprising when you get a show like Yuri on Ice!! or Free! to bring the fanservice balance, because most fanservice tends to be about females.

The end result is a Japan that sees no problem with sexualizing children, like a perversion of the society I've wanted to see. If all you're doing with nude young girls is using them for sexual purposes, you're not really solving the problem of inequality in nudity. All you're doing is showing how depraved you are for sexually exploiting children.

When Doraemon debuted in 69, children were innocent. Nowadays, little girls can be used as sex objects, which likely correlates to why Shizuka's scenes are so censored; they would be seen as introducing sex to children too early, despite that never being the intent to begin with.

All this shows society's corruption, and a reminder of that which we fight. If even young females are seen as sex objects, that reflects badly on how society sees females.

March 10 2017

CONCLUSION - The Tragedy

This tragedy directly reflects a change in the way Japanese media standards work. Media in Japan doesn't often use boys for sexual purposes; that territory is exclusive for girls. The result is that in a culture that was starting to see female nudity as "for adults only", Doraemon and numerous older series became obsolete fast. It's entirely possible that those older episodes can't even air on television anymore.

Not helped is the American market. Despite the existence of these toned-down scenes, they were still censored for the US broadcast of the show. Most notably, Shizuka (called Sue in the dub like some 4Kids production) was reduced to having to take a bath in a swimsuit. Considering the idea of a bath is to clean your body, one wonders exactly what she's supposed to be cleaning.

On its own, it's easy to blame globalization and American dominance changing these standards... except just one year after the tragedy, two vile, evil anime were produced that changed the way loli nudity was used in Japanese media. They were Kodomo No Jikan and Moetan, and both of them used extremely sexual fanservice with underage girls. Kojika's anime would even censor the episodes on TV, only to release lurid uncensored versions on DVD. Moetan was similar, but got away with a massive detail of sexual content in its broadcast version, all involving underage girls or girls meant to look underage.

That these two series were able to become such smash hits, so notable and high-profile, while a newly-censored Doraemon couldn't even scratch the surface... it meant bad tidings for the industry...
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In 2006, three weeks after the airing of the Water Play episode, tragedy suddenly and unexpectedly struck the Doraemon 2005 anime. For one reason or another, parents groups complained about the episode featuring too much nudity, which negatively affected production of a future episode. The episode, which was already completed, was scheduled to air three weeks from then, but due to the complaints, the staff had to censor it in a very obtrusive way, using large amounts of steam that blocked everything.

This had a very negative effect on the nature of Shizuka nudity on the show. From then on out, all scenes with Shizuka in the bath were comparatively censored to not just their original counterparts, but to scenes that had aired just previously! She'd only be seen shoulders up, her whole body hidden in silhouette, or she'd be wearing a towel or something heavily covering. Of course, none of this level of censorship made it to the boys, predictably and cowardly. They still got to show a lot, save the privates they used to.

The picture on the bottom I've provided is not a typical censorship reduction picture. Whereas it was never the intent for other examples to be anything other than censored, this one represents an attempt to bring the picture closer to the idea of the original intent. To that end, Krizeii did well; he didn't show things on Shizuka that weren't allowed in the original anime.

But that the girl has her scenes butchered while the boys go off free, in an anime that has previously never done this... that's a tragedy.

March 08 2017

CONCLUSION - The Early 2005 Anime

The 2005 Doraemon anime was trying to survive in a world that didn't seem to need it anymore. Just last year, in 2004, a push began to include content that pushed the boundaries of acceptable content in anime, such as Elfen Lied and Nin-Nin Shinobuden. The phenomena known as "Otaku O'Clock" wasn't new, but it certainly started to get a lot more mileage around that time.

An outbreak of sexual content started to flood the markets, all of which used plenty of female nudity to entice 18-year-old male otaku with plenty of their parents' money to spend, and not an inkling of common sense to spend it on something to better their life. This was the era of the rise of fanservice OVAs, of DVD bonus content, of fanservice posters, figurines, and more content for perverts to satisfy their worst desires. Gradually and gradually, sexual female nudity became the only kind of female nudity allowed, and none of it was to be placed anywhere near the kids, even innocently.

In particular, one anime in 2004 started to change the game on how content involving child characters was used; Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha. Based on an alternate story to a hentai game, Nanoha starred Nanoha Takamachi as a magical girl, with a frilly dress and a magic wand. But this was no ordinary magical girl; Nanoha was aimed at an older male demographic, with lots of epic battles, a lesbian romance, and fanservice... and all of it involved elementary school-aged girls. Nanoha quickly became known for sexual loli fanservice, to the point where a movie remake actually upped the service.

All of this meant that nudity was slowly becoming the realm where only adults played, but the real damage would be done a year after the Water Play episode of Doraemon with a pair of particularly evil anime. Before that, however, Doraemon would have to deal with its darkest moment yet, one which would ultimately serve the perfect reflection of the industry...
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The last gleaming for Shizuka nudity was in 2006, with an adaptation of the story with solid water. While Shizuka's nipples and the boys' doodles were out of the question, Shizuka showed quite a bit once disrobed. No longer a view above the waist, this full-body view shows us a covering Shizuka, which ends up showing off a great deal of skin.
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In order to bring Doraemon to a new generation, save kids from dealing with years of backstory, and to let the voice actors retire from having voiced the same characters for over a couple decades, a new Doraemon anime was created and broadcast in 2005. By this point, censorship standards had gotten a lot more strict in the new era of anime, as what was acceptable for children years ago is not acceptable anymore. This is the reason Dragon Ball Super does not have much gore in it, as opposed to the earlier series. Even the 1989 and 90's anime Dragon Ball Z was censored comparatively in its recut in the late 2000's, Dragon Ball Kai. They're the same series, essentially, but Kai is allowed to do less than Z can despite the target age group not having changed a bit. (This does not apply to the English Dub of Kai, which is often more adult than the original Z dub.)

Still, Doraemon tried to find its way, and so tested the waters, so to speak, with an adaptation of the portable pool story, with the same ending; the boys stumble across Shizuka's bathwater. And in the end, Shizuka shows a bit of her back, and some of her side; not as much as she used to, but still quite a bit.

CONCLUSION - The 1979 Anime

The 1979 anime version of Doraemon debuted during a time of transition for anime. Although Tatsunoko production were pretty much kings of the field, the Time Bokan series and in particular Yatterman known for humorous female nudity, and Go Nagai still influenced things heavily including an adaptation of the nudity-heavy Cutey Honey, 79 was also the debut Yoshiyuki Tomino changed the game with Mobile Suit Gundam. That anime was known for having a mature, almost adult-oriented story that involved the typically "childish" concept of giant robots, wrapping things up in a war scenario. Aside from that, the trappings were just like anime from the time, and a kid who sat home to watch Gundam would still be at home with Mazinger Z, albeit with a bit of a new direction and more eye-opening.

This, in turn, would usher in a sort of golden age of manga and anime. Stories were beginning to be told more for adults, and along with it, fanservice started to be used more for sexual gratification of the audience. This was the era where Zeta Gundam began including sexual showers of female characters, where City Hunter had gags of a similar kind, and female action stars like the Dirty Pair took over. And yet, all this was still intended for children, including violent works like Fist of the North Star!

But while that did mean a lot more fanservice for the older guys, popular stuff and kids stuff had to be a lot more careful about what they included. Superbook denied the young girl a chance to swim nude in the lake of Eden, a chance her male counterpart got. Bulma, who in the Dragon Ball manga got to show her breasts numerous times, had to censor them in the anime version, while 12-year-old boy Goku showed all of himself no problem. And while Panzer World Galient and Magical Idol Pastel Yumi did include some nudity, they still had to be censored at least a little. We came a long way from 1979, where even Gundam allowed female breasts, including those of children!

These trends, along with the anime, continued into the 90's. Even when the Doraemon manga ended in 96, the anime went up to 2005 with the same techniques. The 90's were the time where Ranma 1/2 could show female breasts, but Inuyasha by the same author could not. Shows began cutting down on nudity, but only to the point where it was reserved for adult works. And then, in 1995, Hideaki Anno got depressed and tried to destroy anime forever with Neon Genesis Evangelion, traumatizing children everywhere and making networks crack down on what was considered "acceptable" content in terms of all regards. It seems fitting that the fall of Doraemon coincided with the rise of Pokemon, an anime which played things much safer in terms of content.

The basic gist was that the concept of anime as "kids stuff" was starting to fall apart at the seams. More and more, kid's entertainment had started getting more and more restrictions placed on it. It became apparent that this older Doraemon series was obsolete...
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Exhibit G:
The anime version of the hot air balloon story. Nobita and Shizuka's lines were separated, and Nobi has to wear a cloth for his lower section.
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Exhibit F:
The anime version of the Solidifying Lantern. The shot of Shizuka falling out of the tub isn't so comedic, and seems a bit more like fanservice now...
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Exhibit E:
The anime version of brainwashed nudist Shizuka. Keeps things slightly more innocent by not showing much of her for very long. She even exits the room in a towel, a far cry from her manga self who went out butt-naked!
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Exhibit D:
Another notable one; Nobita and friends play with something that makes water solid. When their clothes get drenched, they make themselves new ones and enter a castle made of the stuff. The sun shining in leads Nobita to try and correct things, but he accidentally ends up bringing down the castle, and Shizuka, Sueno, and Gian's water-clothes along with it. By this point, Shizuka had started to be depicted with budding breasts and a more "adult" anatomy, though that may be on part of the art team. It would be consistent with the manga's portrayal of her, though.
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Exhibit C:
These pictures of Shizuka getting interrupted in the bath are so common there's really no point in doing all of them, but this one stands out for giving Shizu-chan dot nipples for a few frames. And yet, despite her best attempt to cover, she still turns around and shows her butt, anyway. Shizuka's rear was just as much a staple of the 79 anime as her baths were, and it would be drawn many different ways. Even when her front could no longer be shown even when the manga did, it still would showcase her rear with no difficulties.
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Exhibit B:
Nobita and Doraemon use a gadget to find bodies of water, first for fishing, then for swimming when they spot hot water. It turns out that hot water they find was actually Shizuka's bath. Still early in the run, meaning Shizuka's design isn't finalized. Also, the in-between frame of Shizuka moving her arms across her chest to cover lacks nipples, even as black dots.
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(With apologizes for being late due to needing to complete important homework.)

If there's one thing the animated adaptations of Osamu Tezuka's work, especially the 1950's adaptation of Astro Boy taught Japan, it's that if you take a popular manga and turn it into an anime, you get a popular anime as well. Indeed, anime and manga tend to be thought of as one continuous thing that shares and shares alike, and many manga and Japanese novels tend to be adapted into anime as well. As the top children's manga of the time, it made sense that Doraemon would make this transition, too.

There was a brief false start in 1973, one that was so disliked that it only adapted a few chapters before dying in a fire, literally! The second adaptation, however, one that premiered in 1979, was much more successful. The 1979 anime made it across various countries as well, meaning our boy Doraemon got to see some real exposure.

As a side note, many companies tried to bring the 1979 anime over to America as well, all with minimal success, and all because of one problem: Shizuka in the bath. See, the attempts came around the time when anime was really starting to break out thanks to Toonami's airing of Sailor Moon, Dragon Ball Z, Gundam Wing, and many others. And, as our countless entries of No Girls Allowed! are any indication, cowardly American animators don't know what to do with a naked little girl other than panic. (Should've just done what Miyazaki did with Totoro, which we'll get to eventually...)

So, let's round up some notable Shizuka scenes from this period of time...

Exhibit A:
The first Shizuka scene from the 1979 anime, an x-ray camera is used to take a picture of her. That would explain her vastly simplified anatomy.

March 07 2017

CONCLUSION - The Manga

Doraemon's debut in 1969 has a close contemporary in a notable work of the manga artist Go Nagai, Harenchi Gakuen. In fact, Doraemon had debuted just one year afterwords! Gakuen kickstarted Go Nagai's infamous reputation as the man who introduced erotic content in manga, with lots of nude girls and guys who lusted after them. Still, the nudity was mostly reserved, and intended to be cute rather than truly sexual.

The manga was still going strong in the 80's, around the time another children's manga noted for use of female nudity, Miss Machiko was making waves. Doraemon and the rest of Fujiko's works would be published in their own magazine, CoroCoro. Rumiko Takahashi was also breaking out with a kind of children's sex comedy Urusei Yatsura, the first in her long career which would later include Ranma 1/2, a manga whose anime adaptation was notorious for being the one series [adult swim] would never run, even when they picked up the older-skewing Tenchi Muyo! series after chopping it up for a kid-friendly release on the Toonami block.

There's also the rise of Doujinshi culture in the 1970's, moving towards parodies of pop culture in the 80's. Doujins often involve adult material, and some of them even involve children, disturbingly enough. However, unlike the west where pornography can instantly destroy one's reputation, some artists like Kouta Hirano started as ero-manga artists before moving on to the big leagues. Notably, one doujin artist worked on another CoroCoro manga for children, a Pokemon manga called The Electric Tale of Pikachu, noted for having so much sexual content that the English release was censored heavily to remove a lot of it.

If there's anything to take from this, it's that sexuality is nothing new to children's manga, nor is nude women. But these manga also contain plenty of naked little boys, who often have full-frontal moments. But whether it be boys or girls, both examples of child nudity are mainly used for humor's sake. Take the example of the Hot Air Balloon; it involved both a boy and a girl in a shared embarrassing situation, and neither are particularly happy about it.

Doraemon concluded in 1996, but still remains popular even today. The character has been made a national icon, a sort of "emmisary to the world of anime". And part of that may have had to do with his breakout into the world of television a decade after his debut. Tune in next time, and I'll tell you all about it...
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