Hentai (変態 or へんたい) listen (help·info) English: /ˈhɛntaɪ/ (lit. "pervert") is a word of Japanese origin which is short for (変態性欲, hentai seiyoku); a perverse sexual desire. The original meaning of Hentai in the Japanese language is a transformation or a metamorphosis. The implication of perversion or paraphilia was derived from there. Both meanings can be distinguished in context easily.
In Japanese, the term describes any type of perverse or bizarre sexual desire or act; it does not represent a genre of work. Internationally, hentai is a catch-all term to describe a genre of anime and manga pornography. English adopts and uses hentai as a genre of pornography by the commercial sale and marketing of explicit works under this label.
The word's narrow Japanese-language usage and broad international usage are often incompatible. Weather Report Girl is considered yuri hentai in English usage for its depiction of lesbian sex, but in Japan it is just yuri. The definition clash also appears with the Japanese definition of yuri as any lesbian relationship, as opposed to its sexually explicit definition in English usage.
- Because there are fewer animation productions, most erotic works are retroactively tagged as hentai since the coining of the term in English. Hentai is typically defined as consisting of excessive nudity, and graphic sexual intercourse whether or not it is perverse. The term "ecchi" is typically related to fanservice, with no sexual intercourse being depicted.
Two early works escape being defined as hentai, but contain erotic themes. This is likely due to the obscurity and unfamiliarity of the works, arriving in America and fading from public focus a full twenty years before importation and surging interests coined the Americanized term of hentai. The first is the 1969 film One Thousand and One Arabian Nights which faithfully includes erotic elements of the original story.:27 In 1970, Cleopatra: Queen of Sex, was the first animated film to carry an X rating, but it was mislabeled as erotica in America.:104
The term typically identifies the Lolita Anime series as the first erotic anime and original video animation (OVA); it was released in 1984 by Wonder Kids. Containing eight episodes, the series focused on underage sex and rape and included one episode containing BDSMbondage.:376 Several sub-series were released in response, including a second Lolita Anime series released by Nikkatsu.:376 It has not been officially licensed or distributed outside of its original release.
The Cream Lemon franchise of works ran from 1984 to 2005, with a number of them entering the American market in various forms. The Brothers Grime series released by Excalibur Films contained Cream Lemon works as early as 1986. However, they were not billed as anime and were introduced during the same time that the first underground distribution of erotic works began.
The American release of licensed erotic anime was first attempted in 1991 by Central Park Media, with I Give My All, but it never occurred. In December 1992, Devil Hunter Yohko was the first risque (ecchi) title was released by A.D. Vision. While it contains no sexual intercourse it pushes the limits of the ecchi category with sexual dialogue, nudity and one scene in which the heroine is about to be raped.
It was Central Park Media's 1993 release of Urotsukidoji which brought the first hentai film to American viewers. Often cited for creating the hentai and tentacle rape genres, it contains extreme depictions of violence and monster sex. It is notable for being the first depiction of tentacle sex on screen. When the movie premiered in America it was described as being "drenched in graphic scenes of perverse sex and ultra-violence".
Following this release, a wealth of pornographic content began to arrive in America, with companies such as A.D. Vision, Central Park Media and Media Blasters releasing licensed titles under various labels. A.D. Vision's label SoftCel Pictures released 19 titles in 1995 alone. Another label, Critical Mass, was created in 1996 to release an unedited edition of Violence Jack. When A.D. Vision's hentai label SoftCel Pictures shut down in 2005, most of its titles were acquired by Critical Mass. Following the bankruptcy of Central Park Media in 2009, the licenses for all Anime 18-related products and movies were transferred to Critical Mass.
- Lolicon (ロリコン rorikon), also romanized as lolikon or rorikon, is Japanese discourse or media focusing on the attraction to young or prepubescent girls. The term lolicon is a portmanteau of the phrase "Lolita complex"; it describes an attraction to young or prepubescent girls, an individual with such an attraction, or lolicon manga or lolicon anime, a genre of manga and anime wherein childlike female characters are often depicted in an "erotic-cute" manner (also known as ero kawaii), in an art style reminiscent of the shōjo manga (girls' comics) style.Outside Japan, lolicon is in less common usage and usually refers to the genre. The term is a reference to Vladimir Nabokov's book Lolita, in which a middle-aged man becomes sexually obsessed with a twelve-year-old girl. It was first used in Japan in the 1970s and quickly became used to describe erotic dojinshi (amateur comics) portrayals of young girls.
Laws have been enacted in various countries, including in Japan, which regulate explicit content featuring children or childlike characters. Parent and citizens groups in Japan have organized to work toward stronger controls and stricter laws governing lolicon manga and other similar media. Studies of lolicon fans state that they are attracted to an aesthetic of cuteness rather than the age of the characters, and that collecting lolicon represents a disconnect from society.