19th Manga Division Excellence Award
Otouto no otto (My Brother’s Husband)
TAGAME Gengoroh [Japan]
Based on the theme of same-sex marriage, this work depicts gays in the society. One day, a man named Mike from Canada visits a single father family, Yaichi and Kana. He was married to Yaichi’s twin brother, Ryoji. They were married in Canada, but Ryoji had just passed away. Young Kana, who neither knew her father had a twin brother nor if two men could get married, becomes enamored with her Canadian “uncle” who suddenly appeared into her life, and they immediately hit it off. On the other hand, Yaichi realizes his inner bigotry towards his brother as he spends more time with Mike who stays with them while in Japan. Yaichi begins to think deeply about his now deceased brother, with whom the distance grew naturally as they grew older. This is the first serialization in a general magazine by the artist, who is highly acclaimed internationally.
Reason for Award
In old Japan, crossing one’s love was punishable by a horse kick. Yet, it seems we are intolerant about same-sex relationships and marriages. I was very excited when I learned TAGAME Gengoroh, a highly acclaimed “gay erotic artist”, decided to create a long-awaited manga serialization for the “common” people. Indeed, it is more peaceful and enjoyable to read this manga to learn the lessons of ancient proverb. As all minorities are unique, a balanced sensibility is required to know how much, and to what extent, to depict for those internal and external to the issue. Each meticulously drawn body hair undoubtedly demonstrates the artist’s sincerity, energy, and patience. I hope for the day when this work is placed in elementary classroom libraries, so that children like Kana, the main character’s daughter, will read this and grow up to become adults that do not cross others’ love. (MATSUDA Hiroko)