Well this is an interesting development that has me both curious and a little worried. To those who do not know The Titan’s Bride is a popular yaoi isekai web manga posted on Coolmic which is a very similar site to Lezhin comics only with Japanese created content instead of Korean and for the last few months The Titan’s Bride has gained quite the cult following behind it.
So why am I worried by this amazingly animated trailer for a popular yaoi manga? Well it has mostly to do with the fact that at the end of the trailer they clearly state this is going to be a T.V anime series. Now I have nothing against boys love stories getting television anime series, my worry for this comes with the fact that The Titan’s Bride is a pretty hardcore yaoi title. There is a lot of yaoi fun times with at times dubious consent behind them and well if this is going to be aired on Japanese television even at in a late night block, well this is going to be anime that will be very heavily censored. I just hope that if this is the case that with the DVD / Blu Ray release of this anime we will get an uncensored version of the show.
I have been following the turbulent history of Killing Stalking since almost the beginning of its run over on Lezhin Comics. I have reviewed all three seasons of the manhwa in and have written pieces on its growing fandom and controversy around the contents found within its dark and deadly tale. The tale of Killing Stalking ended over a year ago, but even now new controversy still follows this infamous and popular manhwa as new fans and haters find there way into the fandom. It is something that I believe will follow this fandom for some time to come given the nature of the kind of story Killing Stalking is.
Then on May 22, 2020, YouTube channel mOss released a teaser trailer for a Killing Stalking animated project, which has been the subject of many discussions around both Killing Stalking fan groups and yaoi groups around the net, bringing back the question the story has faced since it’s first growth in popularity. Does it romanticize an abusive relationship?
This was not the first video I had seen from mOss’s channel as I had seen their previous animated trailers for Killing Stalking, both of which I found chillingly amazing. Though now I understand why after originally discovering these videos why I had so much trouble finding them the next day. It would seem that the creator had their Youtube channel was terminated for violating the Youtube terms of service. Believe me, there is worse stuff than a Killing Stalking fan video on Youtube and what and who seems to get terminated for actions or non-actions seems about as random as a flip of the coin.
Through the trailer of this new project, however, I rediscovered this amazing creator and learned more about their history within the fandom through their site. For example, I had no idea that the previous videos I had loved so much were part of an official Killing Stalking fan competition or that Koogi herself had chosen their work as the winning entry. These two previous videos had been in 2D, so I found myself surprised when I read the description for the upcoming project to be in 3D. The series is planned for 17 epsiodes at an hour run time each and will be released under the horror studio chAosOPUS Studio.
Now I know a lot of people are very hesitant when it comes to 3D animations because some can look downright awful and can be seen as a cheaper way of getting a product out. It does not look that way for this project though. There are already quite a few progress updates on the site which shows ongoing progress of the project and I must say I am very much looking forward to seeing where this project goes in the future.
When I originally found this manga, I thought ‘oh it’s a cute manga about a cafe that has crossdressing girlie boys, this could be an adorably fun read’ but then this manga hit close to home for me with it’s main lead and I knew I had found something truly special that I would have to write about this month in particular because this is the first manga I have read that has had a non-binary lead character. The reason this hits close to home for me is that three years ago I myself came out as non-binary after many years of soul searching.
The manga focuses on lonely high school student Mogumo who knows who they are as a person, but because of this feels isolated from those around them because they feel that no one truly understands them and just wishes they had some real friends. One day they are approached by a classmate named Tetsu Iwaoka , who thinks his cute ‘male’ classmate that cross-dresses at school would be a perfect fit for his family’s special maid cafe of cross dressing boys. This is not my first time coming across a yaoi story with a cross-dressing maid cafe, after all I have been a long fan of the series otoko no ko wa maid fuku ga osuki aka Boys that Enjoy Maids Clothing!? Its a bit of a hard series to explain but its basically a slice of life story of crossdressing boys ans their antics. Though if you look this one up I must warn it has a lot of R-18 artwork….
So yeah, I went into this manga expecting something like the Cherry Girls of otoko no ko wa maid fuku ga osuki which I would have been more than happy with, but then Mogumo drops a bombshell saying they are not a boy, so everyone assumes oh you are a girl then? It is then that Mogumo’s biggest bombshell is dropped. They do not see themselves as a boy or a girl, and in reading this moment my heart just bloomed with so much pride, because I understood immediately what they meant. They are non-binary and I must confess it is a term I wish I had known when I was a teenager. This reveal however causes some conflict with the others working at the cafe and this is when is how amazing the diversity included in this cafe truly begins to shine.
Within the staff of the cafe we have the transgender owner who is Tetsu’s older sister, a boy who wishes they were a girl but has not quite come to the conclusion that they themselves are trans, a young gay boy who loves cross-dressing because it makes him feel free to be himself and a straight boy who just sees crossdressing as another part of his true hobby of cosplay. Everyone in the cafe is different in their own special way, so Tetsu’s promise of Mogumo finding a place where they can belong and make friends could just come through.
I spent much of my youth as an outcast, I was never good with socializing and had very little interest in socializing with others mostly because I have always found it hard to relate to other people. During my teen years as my body began to change it caused me a lot of health issues that still affect my health to this day. I always knew I did not feel like a girl or a woman and was quite often before puberty mistaken for a boy but it never really bothered me. I knew deep down that I never felt female, but at the same time I had no want or need to be male either. I just wanted to be me without the label of a gender, but it would not be until a few years ago that I would learn the language for what I am and that was non-binary and it was not until I embraced being non-binary that I started feeling more comfortable with the more feminine side of myself. I use to constantly keep my hair short but last year for the first time since I was a kid I started growing my hair out and right now I am actually loving having long hair. Something I use to hate so much.
The characters within this manga discuss what it is like to be different and how some of them have found confidence in labels while others say that those same labels feel like painful restraints for them. What can be freeing for one person can be a hell for another and I liked that they had open and honest discussions about this. The LGBTQ+ community is such a large spectrum of different people that even though we all support each other even within our own ranks we will find those we don’t agree with. I myself have had these experiences with the few other non-binary people I have talked to. To many within the non-binary community gender neutral pronouns are very important, but for me I really don’t care what pronouns others use when talking to or about me, as long as they are being respectful I don’t care what anyone calls me. But I know it’s not like that for everyone and I accept that.
One of the cutest aspects of this manga however is the obvious blooming feelings between Tetsu and Mogumo. This brings up questions of sexuality for Tetsu that I hope get further explored in future volumes and also brings some anxiety to Mogumo because they don’t want to cause trouble for Tetsu, but there seems to be a hurdle in the horizon for these two love birds before anything even happens because of an interesting confrontation for Tetsu at the end of this volume and I look forward to reading more of this amazing manga when the following volumes get an official English release and even though this is not a sponsored post, I got my copy of this amazing manga from Bookwalker which I recently signed up for and am loving all the yaoi at my fingertips.
Let’s face it, 2020 has been a bad year for everyone, from political turmoil and natural disasters to a world wide pandemic and now, I don’t even know how to describe how fucked up recent events around the world have been. It’s getting to the point where I don’t want to check the news because I just find myself thinking, what the fuck now?
June is pride month in the United States and even though you guys can not have the big parades pride is known for and most likely we won’t be able to do the same over here in Australia come time for us here, I have decided to share some of my favourite inspirational stories from within the LGBTQ+ community to share some much needed positivity out into the world, which is something I think we all need right now.
This will include some of my favourite short films, people within the community that inspire me and hopefully if I can get it done on time a review of one of my favourite recent movies.