It’s no secret that I despise, or rather, disapprove of weeaboos. I have a classmate in class who is a weeaboo, and we constantly taunt him for that. But it has started to occur to me that the definition of ‘weeaboo’ is too ambiguous. There isn’t one clear definition of the term ‘weeaboo’, nor is there any universally recognized usage. Whatever the case may be, I’ve found out that there are much more scary weeaboos out there than just my aforementioned classmate.
Weeaboo originally spawned from a Perry Bible Fellowship comic and attained mass popularity through a 4chan filter which changed all instances of the word ‘wapanese’ to ‘weeaboo’. Wapanese being of course, a derogatory term to describe people who are too obsessed with Japanese culture to the extent that they use poor Japanese – poor, random Japanese in their speech and have overly-characteristic mannerisms. Wapanese is also possibly, a portmanteau of the words ‘Wannabe’ /’Western’ and ‘Japanese’.
But before we move on, what in the world is a weeaboo?
This image summarizes it nicely. So a weeaboo is actually someone who has an over-bearing attraction to, or perhaps an obsession with Japanese culture. But once again, I would like to clarify that this goes to the extent where it affects their daily activities and mannerisms. Throughout the staggering amount of time I spent on the internet, I realized that weeaboos are generally characterized as such:
- Not Japanese (duh.)
- On social networking sites, profile or name plagued by Japanese words
- Uses Japanese words in speech/text
That’s just about it. I don’t see how liking to eat Pocky characterizes a ‘weeaboo’. I’ve ate that since I was young, but I stopped a few years ago before I even touched any anime. Why? It got more expensive. Hey, a schoolboy’s got a small allowance. Also, I used to think it was made in Thailand. As with most of the other biscuit stick snacks sold at the local convenience store. Furthermore, some netizens characterize cosplayers or anime nerds as weeaboos as well. I don’t agree with that. I know plenty of people who fall under this so-called categories who are pretty much normal, me being one of them for starters. I don’t go around spouting random Japanese phrases and complaining about Western media. I’m like both cultures, Western and Asian. I’m a proud Chinese person, and I shall not stoop to replacing my own heritage with something else.
I literally screamed within the first few seconds, in horror. It freaked me out,seriously. Nevertheless, I persevered and completed watching the entire damn thing, only to feel disgusted after that. I have nothing against cosplayers, but it just seemed so….horrid.
Which brings me to my next point : Why are most Weeaboos from America? I’m not being a racist, but it’s observable.
Perhaps it’s the appeal of a completely foreign culture. There have been numerous western thinkers and educators who study Japanese culture, but they are not insulted for doing so. Conversely, Japan is interested in Western Culture as well. As a result of the two fields being worlds apart, they possess an unusual charm to the opposite party which results in such a gravitation. As compared to perhaps Chinese and Korean culture, which in some aspects start to overlap with Japanese Culture. As with that previous video, the word seems to be attractive, or even fun to them. It’s like their very own creepy little hobby.
Which brings me to a different topic, which is somewhat related : why is there such extreme hate towards Japanese Culture? To the extent that what seems to be a slight interest in it leads to the person being grouped under the derogatory term of ‘Weeaboo’. Simple. The media. The media leads to one negative example becoming an over-generalization on the entire population. Much like how anime nerds are usually automatically classified to be ‘creepy’ people, mostly due to really freaky people posing with their body pillows and whatnot. Examples of this can be seen from the Little Girl Murders, a spree of serial killings during the period of 1988-1989 in Tokyo and Saitama, Japan. The killer sexually assaulted little girls, drank their blood and ate their fresh. When it was discovered that the serial killer, Tsutomu Miyazaki was a fan of Anime and Slasher films, such as the Guinea Pig series, it sparked a mass panic decrying the otaku in Japan and anime for causing him to become a serial killer.
Much of this could be applied to more minor cases as well. With the concept of ‘Weeabooism’ overlapping with other related ideas such as ‘anime fandom’, much of this could be attributed to the negative effects brought about by Weeaboos in society. Just to set things straight, I do not eat Pocky every day, masturbate to figures of girls, sleep with half-naked body pillows or do Japanese Karaoke. I am not a weeaboo ; I am proud to be Chinese. Weeaboos afflict and cause an intense hate for interest in Japanese Culture, to the extent where it is now a social taboo, an area never to be tread in. It is now a social stigma, and conservative societies like Singapore start to take offence at any interest in Japanese culture. It took me ages to convince my own parents that I had actual friends and I am not a freak (at least, much anyway) but now it just makes me facepalm to see my dad try and get into my hobby. (He spews random Japanese words, 90% of time ‘kawaii’) Oh the horror. As such, any form of interest in Japanese culture is likely to be seen as a problem plaguing Singaporean youth, or even youth in general, especially teenage males, most of which seem to read
And of course, anime nerds =/= weeaboos. I stand by this statement and I shall defend it with all my might.
Haters gonna hate.