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News Article
New Poll - Bullying
This week's poll is from our member tom32403. Do you think bullying has a role in manga and is worth showing? I guess the degree and form of bullying can vary in terms of physical and emotional hurt, but some people here have probably experienced bullying in real life, so this could be a touchy subject to read about in manga.

You can submit poll ideas here (and try to keep them manga/anime-related)
http://www.mangaupdates.com/showtopic.php?tid=3903

Previous Poll Results:
Question: Favorite Pokemon movie
Choices:
Pokemon: The First Movie - Mewtwo Strikes Back - votes: 3344 (34.2%)
The Power of One (Pokemon: The Movie 2000) - votes: 1026 (10.5%)
Pokemon 3: Spell of the Unown - votes: 285 (2.9%)
Pokemon 4Ever: Celebi - Voice of the First - votes: 180 (1.8%)
Pokemon Heroes: Latios and Latias - votes: 318 (3.3%)
Pokemon: Jirachi Wish Maker - votes: 79 (0.8%)
Pokemon: Destiny Deoxys - votes: 77 (0.8%)
Pokemon: Lucario and the Mystery of Mew - votes: 205 (2.1%)
Pokemon Ranger and the Temple of the Sea - votes: 90 (0.9%)
Pokemon: The Rise of Darkrai - votes: 90 (0.9%)
Pokemon: Giratina and the Sky Warrior - votes: 27 (0.3%)
Pokemon: Arceus and the Jewel of Life - votes: 40 (0.4%)
Pokemon: Zoroark - Master of Illusions - votes: 28 (0.3%)
Pokemon the Movie: Black - Victini and Reshiram - votes: 18 (0.2%)
Pokemon the Movie: White - Victini and Zekrom - votes: 10 (0.1%)
Pokemon the Movie: Kyurem vs. the Sword of Justice - votes: 16 (0.2%)
Pokemon the Movie: Genesect and the Legend of Awakened - votes: 28 (0.3%)
I hate them all - votes: 720 (7.4%)
I never watched a Pokemon movie - votes: 3184 (32.6%)
There were 9765 total votes.
The poll ended: October 4th 2013

Now if we could match that with how many people only saw the first movie... And I decided not to do the favorite Pokemon game poll for a couple of reasons. One is that it seems it'll just have a backlash with a bunch of people never playing a Pokemon game before. Another reason is because it'd be more fair to have X and Y as options, as initial review impressions say it's quite good. Comes out October 12 for the Nintendo 3DS.
Posted by lambchopsil on October 5th 6:55am Comments ( 28 )  [ View ]  [ Add ]
Comments

» philip72 on October 5th, 2013, 12:13am

A poll on bullying in manga? Seriously?
Lolicon, sword fights, guro, rape, violent deaths, genocide, battles, guns, incest and all the other stuff manga is full of aside, we're going to fret about "bullying" and whether it should be in manga?

No, every single manga should have 3.5 panels devoted to anti-bullying messages per chapter, all battles will now be fought with hugs, and biannually there should be "a very special chapter" where the MC kills and eats a bully.

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» rychels on October 5th, 2013, 12:38am

hahaha to the guy above me.....

I was looking for the "it's unrealistic and cliched" choice. Although the first thing that popped into my head was shoujo manga bullying.... Really? I seriously doubt that normal middle or high school girls go around pushing pots out of second story windows or surround one girl and cut her hair off. Not to mention those ridiculous ones where the bully tries to hire someone to RAPE the protagonist.....

If the bullying was done more realistically or if the bullying was more a manipulative psychological attack, it might be more interesting to read and could prod character development. (Cyber bullying anyone? Why can't I recall any manga with that?) More often than not, it's used to prod the plot along instead.

I think shounen manga does it slightly better or maybe I just gloss over that part. But again, kinda boring. Been there done that.

Abuse in any form usually isn't realistically portrayed and it becomes glaringly obvious when the person who suffers from chronic abuse suddenly gets over it in two chapters with the help of their new soul mate and "rehabilitates" the bully into best friends forever!!!

Sorry for any disjointed thoughts (and long post)... It's like 3:30 in the morning and I'm currently running on fumes.

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» itsjooleeahh on October 5th, 2013, 12:54am

Quote from rychels
I was looking for the "it's unrealistic and cliched" choice.

I second this! I actually went here to say the same thing.

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» lambchopsil on October 5th, 2013, 1:28am

Added

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» Sorcha on October 5th, 2013, 1:29am

I find bullying in manga unpleasant, but it's ok as long as it was relevant to the plot.

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» caitnap on October 5th, 2013, 5:29am

I don't care much about it as much, actually fanservice disturb me more
it really depend on the author, sometimes bullying is needed in a plot and often used to show how weak the MC is. It's a symbol of weakness in manga.


Black Haze is a recent manga/webtoon I read who use bullying, then give us a satisfying feeling to see the bullying crushed. *grin* it feels very good to see it.

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» Pervserk on October 5th, 2013, 6:20am

It feels very cliched and bad story writing 99% of the time.

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» nakie08 on October 5th, 2013, 6:45am

Maybe a few practical jokes are okay, but I find outright violence to be unrealistic, specially ones that take place out in the open orz. That's usually what I find in mangas. In my previous school(and most schools I presume), incidents like those most often than not result in expulsion. A vote to "Too unrealistic and cliche" from me

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» Rampachs on October 5th, 2013, 8:32am

If it was done well it could be used as a plot device but it's usually done so poorly. So I went with unrealistic and cliche.

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» That3rdGuy on October 5th, 2013, 8:42am

It's unrealistic and/or cliche in many series, but it almost always adds to the character development. Therefore, I feel it has a place in manga. It happens to many people every day and usually affects the way people act. Just because some people find it unpleasant doesn't mean it shouldn't be depicted in manga and other outlets for entertainment. That's like pretending it doesn't happen. One may as well say, "I don't like fighting, so I don't think it should be in manga." roll eyes

I can't believe people actually chose "It's unpleasant, so don't show bullying." Must bring back bad memories for those people. Bullying, to a degree, is needed in society. Many people push it too far, but there's always going to be a pecking order in life. Get used to it. eyes

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» Banarok on October 5th, 2013, 10:48am

i like when it's handled well like in koe no katachi, but generally it's not used to a mangas benefit

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» kitty1826x on October 5th, 2013, 11:06am

I don't mind bullying in mangas honestly it's a 50/50 love/hate thing for me.
Sometimes it really is unrealistic and cliché, but other times I find it adds more depth to the story.
I only seem to like the bullying in mature mangas because that's where the pain and suffering from the bullying seems more realistic.

I don't really like any of the choices I agree with
Quote from Sorcha
as long as it was relevant to the plot.

Generally I feel like it's forced in some stories, but in the ones that aren't I love them.

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» 0oKat~0 on October 5th, 2013, 11:13am

This... is a really interesting question. A lot of people seem to think that bullying in shoujo manga is "unrealistic and cliche". But as scary as it is, such things do happen in real life. Girls getting hit/punched, thumbtacks on seats, in shoes or on the table. ...Ok, maybe not the rape. But everything else... is more less possible. And the bullies that I know of never got their asses expelled either. God knows what the school's administration is doing. -.-

That said, I'll go with the "helps with character development" option. Since most authors do have a reason for including bullying scenes. It could be because they want to show an aspect of the MC's personality, or to get the MC's personality to grow in a particular direction. Although, I would admit that many bullying scenes are over-dramatised and not executed as well as it could have been... *shrugs*

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» batoxx on October 5th, 2013, 12:04pm

for me is a must, depending on the manga, regretfully in many of the mangas i have read the topic of a bully is more inflicted than developed in a fullfiling way that leads to situations with many cliches and whatnot, in spite of that i belive that it is a necessity.

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» achyif on October 5th, 2013, 12:34pm

It varies. Sometimes I'm in the mood for a bullying manga, but most times I'm not...

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» Mamsmilk on October 5th, 2013, 1:30pm

I don't really read stuff with bullying, but whatever works if it is well written.

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» LilyNanami on October 5th, 2013, 1:34pm

I guess it depends on the country; where I live bullying is not a common thing but some movies show that for example in the USA its normal. I don't know in Japan.

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» nakie08 on October 5th, 2013, 5:23pm

Quote from LilyNanami
I guess it depends on the country; where I live bullying is not a common thing but some movies show that for example in the USA its normal. I don't know in Japan.

I've always wondered about that. I watched a lot of american movies and TV series that show cruel bullying in schools in the US. Does that really happen? I don't think that happens in schools in my country. I can't imagine students dunking heads in toilets or pulling up other people's underpants or tying naked guys on the school flagpole.

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» whitespade on October 5th, 2013, 7:31pm

meh, i don't care. some bullying is too over the top, but then it just shows the whole manga sucks so it's not the bullying part that is bad. i dont care about character development or if the bullies got what coming for them - if the story is entertaining, then that's that.

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» Millennia_Curse on October 5th, 2013, 9:11pm




I voted for cliche. In most of the manga i've read, the bullying feels unrealistic. Just the way they usually act just doesn't seem to fit. It's not like it's over the top, its just...poorly executed. The bullies just seem like ...plot devices.

and I don't know how many i have read where this one little kid gets a bunch of rocks thrown at him by a group of other little kids.

Edit: didn't like what i said.

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» vishavs on October 5th, 2013, 11:12pm

I'd leave it up to the authors discretion, since it's usage is dependent on the authors skill. I've no quarrel with those who try to integrate anti-bullying motifs into manga aimed into the younger generation. In fact I think it deserves to have a place in manga but putting it elsewhere such as a seinen aimed piece either requires significant oversight on making unique and personal to the character's struggle. As the age of the demographic increases, the pool of motifs the reader can grasp invariable increases, thus the presence of bullying shouldn't exceed its worth but it should still be present if required.

Yet it can also be a very personal issue, and any absolute stance such as "Bullying should never be included" is a crude rule. If a manga is more relate able to some readers because they experienced an event similar to the protagonist, let it be. It could also help people who had bullied others in the past understand the pain it invokes in the victims, which helps build empathy and develops the reader psyche.

As a side note, I've withdrawn readership to many manga because of the stiff utilization of themes related to and including bullying. It takes a wise author to understand when bullying is useful and when it is detrimental to the reader.

An example of where bullying is useful as a plot device can be seen it "The Breaker" or "Girls of the Wild". I've seen more cases were it wasn't used very well though.

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» imercenary on October 6th, 2013, 4:24am

What a poorly phrased poll. The poll should actually asking two things:

1. Is the use of bullying in manga realistic?
Or.
2. Is the use of bullying in manga cliche?

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» General No.6 on October 6th, 2013, 5:37am

I think verbal bullying is more believable in a plot, than, eg. trashing their locker or desk. Cuz, really, normal teacher's would notice that. But then again, if the mangaka is aiming for borderline non-realistic, for whatever reason, then they have a lot of bullying methods to choose from, maybe just because they can (or maybe to emphasize a metaphorical point?)

Actually, I'm also not sure some of the clichéd methods like toilet dunking are really used, but then again, I read an article once about how parents organised afterschool brawls for their kids so I guess anything is possible.

Ah, personally I like it when the characters use innovative and refreshing ways to solve the bullying problem, normally it's a comedic plot that has this though.

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» Trimutius on October 6th, 2013, 2:31pm

Compared to how I was bullied until 9th grade back in Russia, bullying in manga seems cliche and boring. I went for cliche part when voting.

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» Fantasier on October 6th, 2013, 8:22pm

I think it depends. It is unrealistic most of the times, but usually it does help the story. This isn't like 'let's have it because it helps developments' either... It just needs to be wisely used as a part of a story.

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» chrum on October 7th, 2013, 1:40pm

Depends.. right now I can't recall a name of a manga where the bullying was done in a believable way, but sometimes it fits.
But usually it's really cliche and over the top. The least realistic one I've come across would be Hana Yori Dango. Pushing bullying to an organized event, bordering on making it a school tradition.. that's a no for me.
Maybe I'm wrong, but bullying reminds me of either purely psychological abuse (excluding from a group, nasty remarks, blackmail) or actual, pure violence (colloquially: beating to a pulp after school).
Quote from General No.6
I think verbal bullying is more believable in a plot, than, eg. trashing their locker or desk. Cuz, really, normal teacher's would notice that.

No to mention that such methods would be appropriate in a, maybe, elementary school. Imagine a 17-year old , "serious"school bully trashing someone's desk?

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» Bronia on October 7th, 2013, 4:49pm

Thinking in terms of shoujo manga, bullying is usually handled really badly. The bullies always do the same thing and it's never realistic. Of course, I'm speaking in generalizations, the truth is that the vast majority of shoujo manga that I've read that includes a bullying arc has a tendency to lean on the usual contrived forms of bullying that shoujo uses (ie; groups of girls surrounding the MC and manipulating her "Mr. popular only hangs out with you out of pity.")

If it was used really well, I think bullying would make a fantastic tool for character development in manga, but most authors tend to choose the easy route.

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» mysstris on October 7th, 2013, 7:34pm

I'm not very comfortable with any one choice in this poll especially since it's saying whether or not it has a place in manga. For one, the options aren't very relevant to each other (each have their own points therefore you can opt for mult answers). But I also feel as though these options are understating bullying the way they're poorly phrased.

#1 In bullying mangas, of course it helps with character development (or at least that's supposed to happen) but I wouldn't say so matter a fact-ly "let's have it" just because it does that.

#2/#4The amount of realism of bullying in mangas isn't so relevant I think because no matter how shallow/cliche/extreme/horrifyingly unrealistic it may seem, what we read in mangas no matter how improbable (and cliche), it is not impossible. Therefore even in extreme bullying mangas like "LIFE", although it looks excessive, it's just painful to know that that is how real bullying can get.

#3 I wouldn't say it's good to have bullying because they get what's coming to them but I would say bullying in manga is a good way to represent the issue in one way and get people aware of it

#5 I'd say this isn't a good excuse for not wanting to see bullying in mangas. It may be unpleasant but it feel like this option is ignoring the existence of bullying.

When I read over other people's posts, they mention the cliche bullying in shoujo mangas. (kind of like all the things that Kyoko from Skip Beat said happened to her when she was in middle school with Shou.) Mmmm...I understand where people are coming from in that regard but again, no matter how improbable, it is not impossible. (even if it is 1 in a million)

I also don't know what people mean when they say bullying done in a believable way. I mean when you hear about violence in the news and what's being reported, sometimes it's absurd yet it still happened no matter how "un" believable it is.

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