One of the central themes I intend to explore in my blogging is the concept of the guilty pleasure.
In the more common contexts, guilty pleasures are negatively valued/low-culture activities and pursuits relative to high-culture media. For example, a person with a ‘cultured’ self-image may feel guilty taking pleasure in a lot of reality TV programs as opposed to watching classical theater or the ballet.
I am not interested in this particular context. I don’t make value judgments, or subscribe to the high/low culture binary. It’s all deculture to me. But as should be clear in my first meditation on this, there is such a thing as a guilty pleasure. But taking pleasure in what things exactly?
In the aforementioned post I confessed to an attraction to and an appreciation for evil characters in anime. Here the guilty pleasure is thinking dirty thoughts about 2d females in fictional high school age. The freshman high school student in Japan is 16 years old. I will be 32 in less than 3 weeks.
Every year, it gets worse and worse. I get older and older, the girls stay the same age. I’m even attracted to a particular subset of 2d high school girl: the loli.
Like Izumi Sou, Konata’s dad, I too, am also a lolicon. However, according to the source of all that is good and true, there’s nothing wrong with me:
I’m actually married to an older woman (though I admit she looks younger than I am and is often described as more girly than womanly). But if there’s nothing clinically wrong with me (I am neither a pedophile nor an ephebophile), why do I feel guilt? A clinical psychosis would actually absolve me of guilt because it takes away my freedom. But I am well, and I am free. And I use this freedom to indulge my attraction through the consumption of media that allows for a certain level of wish-fulfillment: I get to pursue thinking dirty thoughts about these underage females.
While I get to see these characters in a large number of anime, and the experience is quite voyeuristic especially for slice-of-life shows watched in marathon sessions, I don’t feel as guilty as I do now. What’s different about now? I’ve discovered eroge, having started playing Fate/stay Night. The difference in the experience is that the eroge is so much more immersive.
I feel like I’m living with these girls. After hours and hours of play, which is weeks in ‘anime time’ is merely a day or two in the game. The frequent breaks the text-based medium allows also gives an added ‘lived-in’ impression. Mind you, at this point in the game, I have yet to encounter a hentai moment. So I’m really confronted with the guilt only freedom allows.
How so? It’s because I’m free to stop this at any point. I don’t have to pursue this pleasure. Only that I most probably will. It’s this exercise of freedom that makes me feel the guilt. Nobody’s forcing me to perform vile acts on these girls, as vile as the thoughts I have tell me I’m so ready to do.
I’ve theorized in the recent past that there are two broad categories of otaku behavior: the amassive, and the expressive. My immersion in Fate/stay Night has led me to some amassing activities:
However, being the expressive person that I am, I put together the ff. images. Like I said, nobody’s forcing me to perform vile acts on these girls. I put these images here (NSFW) not because I underestimate your imagination of what I am capable of doing, only that I’m very fond of my own imagination thank you.
it is moist & delicious meta
and it's not even a lie!