Interesting Fact About Hentai (Semi-NSFW) | Anime Explained

History of hentai.. Whether it’s the gratuitous crotch shots or the jiggly boopers that defy physics anime’s fascination with all things sexual is… It’s pretty obvious. Even the cleanest shows are rife with so much fanservice that it’s rare to find a show without it. So it shouldn’t come as a surprise to hear that some of your favourite mangakas started their careers making hentai. Like Shirow Masamune the mangaka behind Ghost in the Shell started his career drawing some steamy scenes and then went back to hentai even after the success of the Ghost in the Shell series. Shouji Sato, the creator of High School of the Dead is another manga that was later adapted into an anime where we get this legendary scene from He also had a start in the industry as a hentai artist working under the pen name of Inazuma.

 

Even Boichi, the illustrator of Dr. STONE, a manga for people with galaxy brains, has put in some time drawing for some H materials. There’s a symbiotic relationship between mainstream manga and hentai with creators flexing their muscles across both genres. Some generous mangakas even

make their fans’ wildest dreams come true by creating doujinshi featuring their favorite characters. Also as context: doujinshi is a Japanese term for anything that’s self-published and doesn’t always necessarily mean hentai. So I want to spend some time today to explore the path from hentai to mainstream manga and even the other way around. But before I get ahead of myself, let’s take a quick look at the origins of hentai. You guys ready? Yeah!! All right! Let’s do it. First off, in the West the word hentai is used to describe animated pornography from Japan but in Japan, hentai can just mean “strange” or “pervert” depending on the context. You also see labels like “ero,” “18-kin,”  “japornimation,” and “ecchi” applied to sexy stuff.

 

I could do a whole video on the evolution of all those terms and their difference in meaning but the

most important term for this video are hentai and ecchi a derivative of hentai. Ecchi is a slang word that probably came from the H sound in hentai  and is used to refer to more softcore stuff. Suggestive scenes that don’t necessarily go full-bore into the realm of hentai. Now, sufficed to say that the word hentai as I’m using it today is a Western invention used to describe 2D animated pornography. Fun fact! The earliest known use of the word hentai in English was in a post on an anime forum in 1990 about Ranma 1/2 and you know what? That just… that just feels right. It’s pretty fitting that there are tons of different ways to describe Japan’s smutty stories.

 

The history of animated pornography goes back waaaaay before manga was even created and it’s taken different forms over the years. The Illustrated erotic scroll, or shunga, The Dream of the Fisherman’s Wife, holds the esteemed title as the first known example of tentacle porn. Shunga were popular in Japan in the Edo Period, when collecting erotic drawings was a common pastime. Collectors would proudly display their shunga and the fact that they were erotic wasn’t really very taboo.

People of all walks of life enjoyed shunga because people of all walks of life enjoyed sex. No big surprise there but it’s pretty neat that’s something as niche and weird as tentacle porn goes back to the 19th century. Yes, humans have always been… Horny on main If you want to know more about

tentacle porn, well… Godspeed, my friend the internet is full of riches for you…

Just Google it I guess. Now I’ll be getting to the anime origins of tentacle porn in a minute but for now we’re still in the dawn of hentai in Meiji era Japan. With the opening of Japan during the Meiji period, Westerners brought different cultural values namely being big ol’ prudes.

 

Japanese cultural staples like public bathing were under new scrutiny from Westerners and Japanese society adopted some of the West’s more restrictive attitudes about sex. These ideals were cemented in the form of strict obscenity laws. All of a sudden, sex was taboo and no one wanted to see your octopus orgy anymore. I’m looking at you. Yeah. Censorship was one major reason shunga fell out of popularity but the invention of photography dealt the fatal blow. But where there’s a catgirl, there’s a way and somehow I really doubt humanity will ever stop drawing people having sex.

 

It’s deeply ingrained in our nature. Just ask any middle schooler how many dicks they’ve drawn in their notebooks. And also there are straight-up cave paintings of people doing the big sex. So I’m pretty sure porn will outlive us all. Ain’t that right, ripped out Boa Hancock? Despite shifting cultural values sexy drawings persisted. In the 1930s, Ero-Guro was the new obsession. The artistic

and literary movement focused on grotesque sexual imagery. Images of hedonism blended with gore and violence to create an artistic style whose influence can be seen all over contemporary manga, erotica, and art. And… is that Bobby?

From King of the Hill? Goddamn, Bobby! The movement’s inciting incident was known as the Sada Abe incident. A geisha turned prostitute murdered and mutilated her lover during sex and carried around his genitals in her kimono after the act Oof. It inspired artists like writer Edogawa Ranpo whose stories featured queer relationships and was then considered deviant sex. Ero-guro can still be felt today. It inspired artists like Shintaro Kago, Suehiro Marou, and Takato Yamamoto. Finally in 1969, we get Japan’s first animated feature with erotic elements: A Thousand and One Nights. It was written and produced by none other than Osamu Tezuka, because you know the God of manga had to have a hand in hentai too – and he did! In the form of furry porn. It wasn’t discovered until after his death when his daughter found the sexy drawings in his desk. Damn. Imagine that. Getting snitched by your own daughter. Also just look at these drawings. The man drew snakes..  with boobers… snakes… with tittays. Just look at it. The man was a genius. Anyway these sketches have not been published to the US yet. Tezuka took another crack at adult animation in 1970s. Cleopatra: the Queen of Sex. It was the first Japanese erotic animation to make it to the US but it didn’t see a whole lot of success. You can actually see us talk more about this on our other video essay, History of Isekai.

Check it out. Anyhow, Western consumers weren’t very interested in an erotic animation.

They just weren’t used to cartoony porn but that was about to change. Ninja Scroll 1993 and with its graphic depiction of sexual violence, it definitely showed animation sex and you know… inspired The Matrix, but that too isn’t considered the first hentai film to hit in the US market. That honor goes

to 1994’s Urotsukidoji which is credited for creating the tentacle porn genre for anime. Anyway, with props to The Dream of the Fisherman’s Wife, of course. The anime features lots of monsters, lots of violence, and lots of sex. But all those tentacles had another function: they could dodge the censors. The censorship laws I mentioned earlier? Yeah.. they remained in place with minimal changes for over a hundred years.

Even showing pubic hair was outlawed until the 1990s, so showing genitalia and sexual acts was obviously off the table too. But mangakas were more imaginative than the lawmakers. So tentacles and other fantastical appendages were used to swerve the law. Censorship laws may not have changed much but we’ve come a long way since shunga in the Edo Period and we’re finally about to enter the golden age for anime in the West.

The 1990s, Urotsukidoji was the beginning. Just as anime flooded the US in the 90s, hentai came pouring in too. Several companies cropped up and started licensing hentai in the West and the audience grew alongside the newly available material. ADVision, Central Park Media, and Critical Mass imported tons of hentai every year. And while it’s harder to trace just how much, there were more pirate and anime coming to the US too, passed from fan to fan. The proliferation of anime and hentai go hand-in-hand, so it makes a lot of sense that creators interested in breaking into anime and manga would get started on hentai. Tezuka isn’t the only anime OG to make naughty drawings So your special moment is coming up. It’s Christmas or Valentine’s Day or maybe just a nice anniversary or birthday and you want to celebrate with your loved one.

 

There’s so many gift choices. What do you even get them? Some random trinkets? A diamond? A toaster? Or just an envelope with 50 bucks in it? Well, why not try LoveBook, a service that allows

you, that’s right you, to create your very own customizable book that celebrates you and your loved one’s special moments. So, instead of a plain ol flower bouquet that any Joe Schmo can get, why not give the gift that is .

Go Nagai, best known for his work on Mazinger Z and Devilman is widely credited for defining the mecha genre. Oh and he’s also the creator behind Harenchi Gakuen or Shameless School.

Harenchi Gakuen is considered one of the first if not the first ecchi manga. So this man gave us smutty mangas and giant robots. Thank you, Based Nagai. A few years later, he created Cutie Honey and started a sacred tradition of making anime fans hide their screens whenever any human beings

are around. Cutie Honey had the titillating, sorta-naked transformation scenes  that became a hallmark of the magical girl genre. So we really have Go Nagai to thank for for turning a lot of people to anime. Thanks, Go. But it’s not like the hentai to manga journey is a one-way street. Tons of famous mangakas have started with mainstream stuff and then transitioned into making hentai or made hentai alongside hugely popular mainstream works.

At the end of the day, is there really that big of a difference between drawing dynamic fight scenes and dynamic boning scenes? Blade of the Immortal is genre-defining in its badassery and if you look at Hiroaki Samura’s art you might see some of the sensibilities he brought to his later erotic work, The Love of the Brute. Blade and Brute features fluid movement, richly rendered textures, and a high level of care with characters physicality. Samura’s doujinshi, The Night of the Succubus, was another adult work released after The Blades of the Immortal found widespread success. Mangaka Ito “Oh! Great” Ogure was right on Samura’s heels. His series Tenjo Tenge was published by Shuiesha in the late 90s and he came out with Air Gear in 2002.

But while he was working on these popular and honestly pretty raunchy series, he was also publishing Silky Whip, whose title is about as descriptive as it needs to be. Silky Whip anthologized a bunch of Oh! Great’s pornographic stories and while its art isn’t quite as lush as what we get in Tenjo Tenge and Air Gear, it’s still lovingly drawn and full of Ogure’s sardonic humor. Now, I already mentioned Masamune Shirow of Ghost in the Shell, Appleseed, or Galgrease. If you’re a discerning anime fan, Galgrease is about as H as it gets and the grease part of the title? Yeah… That’s the reference to the character’s..

um you know.. sheen. Dr. Stone’s Boichi got noticed for his work on Lover in Winter, which, yeah, is very H. Lover in Winter collects a series of hentai one-shots and showcases Boichi’s distinctive style.

The creator of Helsing, Kouta Hirano, also cut his teeth drawing hentai manga. It took a long time for

Hirano to find his place as a drawing assistant. He also honed this skill working on lesser-known projects like Hi-and-Low, a sexy World War II spy short originally published in the hentai mag Young King Ours. Hi-and-Low’s protagonist, a pair of female spies, bear a striking resemblance to Integra Helsing of Hellsing and Yumiko from Crossfire. Hirano is known for giving his characters cameos in this other works.

Heck, Helsing is based off an earlier hentai one-shot that he made called The Legends of the Vampire Hunter. He also participates in the douinshi collective GUY-YA so he’s still using his hentai chops. Random fun fact, at the end of Helsing vol 5, Hirano states that he is a fan of One Piece and said that he would like to feel up Nami. Sir… this is.. this is Wendy’s. I never explained this, for context a doujin circle is a group of artists that like to create doujins together, like one big happy, pervy family. Nozomu Tamaki is another mangaka on this list and he’s very famous for his Dance in the Vampire Bund series, but honestly this one is pretty easy to guess you know? When you look at his base art…

 

I’m just I’m just saying… and as I mentioned at the start of the video Shouji Sato, the mangaka of Highschool of the Dead and Triage X, wrote a bunch of hentai under the alias Inazuma, and is in the hentai group called Digital Accel Works. Fun Fact: he was actually an assistant of Koshi Rikudo, who was the mangaka of Excel Works AND just like his assistant Koshi Rikudo has also created hentai… Wow… it’s like a like a whole hentai legacy.

And that’s about it. Obviously, there’re way more mangakas that are making hentai that I haven’t mentioned here.

 

Well heck, let me go through some more real quick. Okay so… Rei Hiroe, mangaka for Black Lagoon publishes hentai under the pen-name TEX MEX, which is a hilarious pen name. Akira Akatsuki, mangaka known for Medaka Box has also drawn some hentai under the alias of Kuuya… Hiromitsu Takeda, mangaka of Maken-Ki has actually made wayyy more hentai than mangas and is quite famous in the hentai scene, and lastly Kiyohiko Azuma a mangaka who is known for the 4koma comedy classic Azumanga Daioh and the family friendly Yotsubato! Even Azuma-sensei has created hentai before… Wow… So fanservice is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to erotic anime. I think it is sort of a gateway drug that drags me deeper into the abyss and that abyss is hentai. But despite Japan and the US’s attitude towards sex, it’s super normal y’all. Very natural. When mommy and daddy love each other, they just get some tentacles, some beads,  sprinkle some NTR, and we’re good! Just kidding. Don’t.. don’t sprinkle that around. But seriously though. I know I’ve been making my usual wisecracks and jokes but we didn’t make this video to shame any of these artists. I just want to make a fun video about the history of hentai and some of my favorite mangakas

who also happened to draw and have drawn hentai. So just like the legendary actor Samuel L Jackson once said Does Samuel L Jackson like anime?  Yes, I do… hentai