An adult manga comic book will be banned from sale in Tokyo over its depiction of sexual relationships between close relatives, authorities said, the first time expanded regulations on sexual content will be enforced.
The Tokyo Metropolitan Government issued a city-wide ban of sales to minors of Imoto Paradise! 2 (Little Sisters Paradise! 2), saying its incestuous plot was “unwholesome” and had to be kept out of children’s reach.
An advisory body said the comic, published by Kadokawa Corp, wrongly “glorifies sex that deviates from social norms.” The manga is a spin-off from an adult-oriented computer game with the same title.
The designation comes as a first since rules governing adult manga were revised three years ago, which prohibit the “sale of publications depicting certain adult content that could be regarded as unhealthy to the development of the capital’s youth under the age of 18.” Kadokawa declined to comment.
Publishing companies and manga artists voiced concern that the expanded ordinance “violates the freedom of expression.”
Although widely regarded as a conservative society, Japan has a thriving pornography industry, and varieties of adult manga and anime that would shock many readers outside of Japan. Creation and distribution of child pornography was only recently criminalized, and possessing such materials is not illegal.
The move to tighten rules on sales of explicit material to children was due in part to criticism from foreign campaign groups.
The UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) has long pressed Japan to tighten its child porn rules, which it says exacerbate a global problem driven by the Internet.
“Many people agree that there are horrible manga images are out there and they need to be dealt with,” said Hiromasa Nakai, spokesman for the Japan committee for UNICEF.
By Maesie Bertumen
Image: “Manga!” by Todd Lappin/Flickr