Anime convention in Baltimore is a mix of cute girls and pervy men
- No, we're not creepy for using this photo. (Photo: Flickr/popculturegeek.com)
The anime community has long been dominated by adult men with questionable grooming habits and a deep knowledge of Oten Shimokawa. But with interest rising among teenage girls, some of whom like to dress up as their favorite fantasy sexpot, these conventions have become an awkward, somewhat pervy affair, the Post reports.
J. Freedom du Lac's story begins with a man in his mid-30s asking to take a picture of a 16-year-old girl dressed as Madoka Kaname: "a Day-Glo pink wig with pigtails, white knee-high stockings, a red choker and a short pink-and-white dress that Little Bo Peep might have worn on a day she wanted to alarm her parents." The man took a picture "... and then stared. And stared."
Creepy! And, as du Lac reminds us, sometimes it becomes criminal, as it did during an anime convention at National Harbor last year.
An accompanying video (below) opens with an interview of a 43-year-old man, cuts to a writhing cartoon girl who shrieks, "It's coming!," and later quotes a 24-year-old girl saying, "There are definitely a very small population of people who just come here to kind of hug up on some of the younger girls — and some younger boys, also. I think it goes both ways."
In case you still don't get it, Pedobear — whose "whole function is hugging underage girls" — also makes an appearance, as does a young woman who says she's been stalked on Facebook, forcing her to adjust her privacy settings. "There are risks," she says, "and I do try to keep my name relatively anonymous." The fact that the video identifies her as one Tracey Penaloza, a 24-year-old nurse, suggests either that she's not doing such a good job, or she's banking on the received wisdom that no one reads newspapers anymore.
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