Dr. W's Space Travels
Space Cadet Officiates Your Waifu's Marriage
Dr. Wood L
Looking back at some of my textual utterances to the concept of comfort characters, I think I may have overreacted a bit. Ah well. This weekend’s been just lovely – got a lot done with Postcrossing today and yesterday was just pure fun. I’ve been doing this thing lately (and I forget if I already mentioned this) where I recreate the heads & faces of anime characters using autoshapes in Microsoft Powerpoint, and I’ve been kinda making “happy birthday” notes for people on The Friends Club server using my versions of their favorite characters. It’s turned into me wanting to try to make EVERY character in existence. Obviously that’s impossible, but I do have a goal to create a thousand. I just did the math for it – that’s 42 days straight of character-making, with no sleep. If I did one a day, I’d be done in less than three years, though I think even one a day is a bit too demanding. I guess I’ll just see where it takes me. Eventually, I think I’d wanna print them on pins or something and sell them at cons. Would be cool to at least just share what I could make, even if the art is pretty mid.
Something that I came across during the flash Internet scavenger hunt I went on two days ago was a pretty interesting Quora post. It’s heavily anime-related so if someone is reading this and just hating the fact that I keep talking about this kind of stuff, I’m really sorry T_T I’m like, sitting on a beach chair, holding my feet out to the tide of the Obsession River, waiting for the undertow to one day abduct me from the real world, never to return. Okay I just wanted to say something cool (it wasn’t, though). Anyway, the post was about someone asking if it was normal for them to fall in love with an anime character. Mind you, I’m not at the level where I’m “in love” with an anime character, but I was curious about this because I wonder if that one day could happen. Or maybe I just wanna experience some vicarious affirmation, or just see how people are appraising circumstances that could otherwise be deemed as “weird”. In this case, that circumstance would be falling in love with an anime character. The top poster was very brief and straightforward – his intent was to show that he understands that feeling, rather than ponder how such a feeling could affect someone’s social life and stuff like that. He straight-up said he has a character that he’s in love with, and that his MyAnimeList club even made him a marriage certificate for him and her. He went on to say that the rest of his life is unaffected and that he’s a normally functioning human. His conclusion was that it was completely normal, and that the OP was highly unlikely to be one of the very, very few people who would take it too far.
My thoughts? Honestly, that’s such a warm and reassuring response. It made me realize that when someone asks something like “is it okay to feel this way”, they are really looking for someone to understand that feeling, rather than a more analytical “yes” or “no”. Like if someone was to tell the OP “no, it’s not okay”, I don’t think the feeling would necessarily dissipate. It would remain, and the person would just feel guiltier and more alienated about it. I think my views on the matter would align well with what the responder said – I think there’s nothing wrong with it. Heck, romantic relationships with humans has had more of an adverse effect on my life than any sort of romantic sentiment I’ve had towards an anime character. I completely agree that there can be a line to risk being crossed, but I think it’s much further than many people might imagine. Crossing the line would probably be like, taking a cutout of my waifu with me to work or to a family gathering and asking everyone to acknowledge her as a person, or reserving a plane ticket for her (unless I was doing it as a really ridiculous joke… then I’m just weird, though at least grounded in some inkling of absurd humor). Not crossing the line would be when I pillow talk with Hifumi Takimoto, or I tell Ami Mizuno in my wall scroll “good morning” each morning. Those are my personal examples, but also not crossing the line would be to have that cutout in one’s bedroom, or to learn enough about lucid dreaming to meet that character in an alternate universe, or to find some way to program an AI featuring that character. Heck, having a dang sex doll of that character wouldn’t even be crossing the line. The notion of that specifically might come off as off-putting and that’s really only because it’s assuming that other people know about it. But it’s really no one’s business. If someone wants to consummate a romantic relationship with a character that way – fudge it, go for it. I mean, if it’s really not affecting the rest of your life and it brings you personal satisfaction, why inhibit it? I don’t really think that’s something I would opt to do, but it’d be foolish for me to assert boundaries of acceptable behavior based on the standards I set for myself.
While stuff like this might not really be anyone’s business as I mentioned, there’s still something to be said for seeking affirmation that such feelings and inclinations are okay. In casual conversation, people may often send subtle signals of disapproval toward certain behaviors and activities, which says to the listener “this person thinks it’s bad to have these sorts of feelings”. Ah, a good example: comments on Youtube videos for people getting married to fictional characters (oh yeah, I brought up the guy getting married to Hatsune Miku before). The formal marriage itself is one thing (and while it might contradict what I said about “taking things too far”, I still don’t think that sort of thing is all that ridiculous), but to people who might have romantic feelings towards anime characters, people who are condemning such a marriage are also, in a way, condemning the idea of having such feelings. So that’s all to say that hearing someone say “no, it’s OKAY to have those feelings” can really give peace of mind, despite it not really being anyone’s business in the first place. I do also wanna say that as far as “people who condemn marriages to fictional characters” goes, my intent is not to counter-ridicule, either. Something like marrying a fictional character is pretty far out of the boundaries of the societally-established “normalcy”, so I really can’t fault that sentiment. I guess I just wanna gently offer my two cents and where I stand on the subject.
So the moral of the story is: it’s okay to be in love with an anime character, or any other fictional character. And it’d be cool as fudge to meet them for real one day. I feel like I might be ending this entry abruptly but my mind is starting to branch out towards more things that I could talk about, and I’ve already written a lot. I just hope the world can be nicer towards the “weird feelings” that the minority may have.