There’s a harem anime called Hajimete no Gal (also known in English as My First Girlfriend Is a Gal) that recently came under the critical eye of fans after one particular episode decided to get preachy and virtue signal about the way women are treated in erotic visual and light novels. The show is filled to the brim with fan-service and sex gags, which is why it stood out in particular when the English version of the anime decided to put third-wave feminist talking points into an episode.
Episode 7 of Hajimete no Gal, at around the 12 minute mark, decided to virtue signal to Social Justice Warriors by taking aim at fans of ecchi novels. The romantic-comedy anime is filled with puns, localized jokes at the expense of Donald Trump, and yes, digs at visual/light novel fans for liking erotic content… even going as far as calling said novels “misogynistic crap”. Some fans have retorted by saying that the localizers are SJWs.
The content was brought to the attention of Sankaku Complex, who railed on the localizers for engaging in typical Cultural Marxist behavior, something known to most people as “SJWism”.
YouTube outlet Anime Fan has the episode available on their channel, which features the segment that some visual/light novel fans and ecchi connoisseurs took issue with. You can view the segment below.
Basically, the theme of the segment is that the manager of the cosplay cafe decided to have the buxom young girls working there partake in a “book day” event. He decides to disguise erotic novels as normal novels and aims to have the girls read them to customers.
As the girls begin reading them, one of the girls gets angry and yells out…
“I can’t read this misogynistic crap, what is that creep thinking?! It’s downright degrading”
The character storms out of the room and calls the owner of the cafe in an attempt to get the manager fired for attempting to get the girls to read the light novels.
However, in between that time the main character decides to white knight for the ladies. While they read the novels in jest, the main character gets angry and decides to lay into the sleazy cafe manager.
The main character, Junichi, exclaims…
“You’re crossing the line. You can’t make high school girls read that crap. They may be light novels but they’re heavy on the creepy sex stuff.”
The manager responds saying…
“Of course! Where’s the fun in forcing these jailbait tricks to read something decent. Plus, most of the freaks who come in here hate women, so seeing girls degraded gives them boners and makes them happy.”
If that didn’t raise eyebrows enough or make you cringe, Junichi’s response went a step further off the white knight scale, where he goes full Peter Coffin, saying…
“Well maybe think about how these girls feel for once. Maybe they don’t want to be debased just so you can sell a few more [bleep] chickenwings to horny losers with mommy issues.”
The manager gets angry and confronts Junichi on lecturing him, calling him a “cuck”.
The first girl who went to the manager’s boss to rat him out about the book day then comes back in and hands him the phone, where the owner of the cafe lecture’s the manager about “book day” and how it’s canceled.
The manager rounds out the segment by saying…
“Book day’s been canceled, you guys. Another win for you SJW millennials.”
In the original Japanese version of the anime, there is no mention of SJWs, no mention of millennials, no mention of misogyny, or novels being creepy, no mention of light novel readers having mommy issues, no mention about getting boners, and no mention of “jailbait tricks”. Instead, the real conversation is about how the sleazy manager wanted the girls to read the sexy novels and get embarrassed in front of strangers, and the main character objected to it. The manager got the call from the boss, canceled the book day and left. That was as far as it went.
You can view the original subtitled version below courtesy of syko loco.
[Update:] For those curious about the original text in the Japanese version, after the sleazy manager walks in and asks why Junichi has his panties in a bunch and that he picked some “good books” for the girls to read, Junichi responds…
“You’re going too far. What are you trying to make high school girls read?”
“[…] They might be light novels but they’re far too perverted.”
The manager responds by saying…
“That’s what’s good! Why make them read something normal? The girls will get all red and embarrassed as they read them — that’s what makes the customers happy.”
Junichi retorts with the following…
“Think about how the girls feel! They won’t want to read embarrassing lines like that in front of other people!”
The manager then gets angry and says…
“You’re pretty arrogant for a part-timer. You really want to complain about my event?”
That’s when they’re interrupted with the phone call.
Some of the readers of Sankaku Complex accused the show’s localizers of using the episode to virtue signal.
The exchange was definitely awkward and seemed out of place compared to the rest of the show’s typically low-brow humor, especially considering that large portions of the show are dedicated to bouncing boobs, short skirts and lots of fan-service; the target audience is the same one that Junichi berated.
However, this isn’t the first time that we’ve seen the culture war and identity politics
seep out of the bulbous sack of Cultural Marxism, and sordidly queef its way from between the legs of agitprop localizers.
As reported by Niche Gamer, back in 2015 there was a fairly poignant brouhaha over a Prison School episode that awkwardly drug #GamerGate into a conversation between characters, making it little more than a desperate way for the English writing staff to further poke at the angry bear. It did little more than provoke fans who didn’t like American memes being inserted into the show, and furthered their detest for Western-grown identity politics crawling its way into their entertainment.
Following the Hajimete no Gal episode, it reinforced some anime viewers’ belief that subs are still superior to dubs.
(Thanks for the news tip Migi)