Chao, Tien-yi: "Transgression of taboos. Eroticising the master–servant relationship in Blue Morning." In: Journal of Graphic Novels and Comics 6.4 (2015), S. 382–397.
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|Resource type: Journal Article
BibTeX citation key: Chao2015
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Keywords: "Blue Morning", Hidaka. Shoko, Japan, Manga, Sexuality
Collection: Journal of Graphic Novels and Comics
Butlers, ‘the chief manservant[s] of a house’, remain one of the essential icons in Japanese ACGN (animation, comics, gaming, novels) culture, including Boys’ Love (BL), a genre featuring erotic or romantic relationships between men. In mainstream BL works, butlers are very often portrayed by writers and artists as capable, handsome and even sexy. Interestingly, even though they have to take their masters’ orders, they tend to be the ones who dominate the master–servant relationships. Based on Pamela Regis’s model of romance elements and Dru Pagliassotti’s study of BL writing formula, this paper examines the entangled relationship of love, lust and power between the master and his butler in Shoko Hidaka’s well-received BL manga Blue Morning. The progressive development of bond and tension between these two protagonists indicates an emerging domestic partnership. Such a partnership, it is argued, fulfils BL readers’ expectation for ‘equal love’ by subverting and testing the limits of social conventions.
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