“I guess one would have to be, inventive”

February 5, 2009


…is what the character Trevor Goodchild (Æon Flux) says, as he delights himself in trying to figure out how organ-less aliens make love. That’s interesting, considering what Peter Chung (director of Æon Flux) once said about his work. To overcome restrictions on the amount of sex and violence that could be shown on television, he claims to have come up with substitutes for sex organs so that things that wouldn’t normally be sexual take on sexual innuendo. For example, the screenshot below on the left depicts two people having ‘sex’ by deflating and inflating their special suit.


Honestly though, I couldn’t stop laughing. The very notion of a guy moaning and reaching his climax because of alternating pressure was just too much for me. Æon Flux offers plenty more, such as exchanging-eyeball-sex, bird-sex, artificial-vertebrae-sex, and et cetra. Regardless of its intention (comedy? arousal?), there is no denying that they are–as Trevor puts it–inventive.


And for the more observant, such cases can be found in anime as well. Episode 2 of Kaiba is one. Though I have to say it was much more intensely arousing and stimulating than Chung‘s approach. I still remember how explicitly Yuasa presented sex scenes in Kemonozume, so it’s interesting to see him evoking similar response in a more round about way. And indirect sexual intercourses aside, there are as many ambiguous sexual innuendos in anime as there is in Aeon Flux (i.e. Trevor licking a woman’s ear at the top). Anime also seems to frequently use one’s ear as a substitute for a sexual orifice, which happens to be quite effective, as I certainly was stimulated by Chie sensei moaning while picking her ears above. Certain scenes in FLCL also comes to mind. Then there is that phallus looking objects being touched and licked as well (and again, FLCL just automatically comes to mind…what a perverted anime). Anyway, interesting to see how some artists are combating the terrible limitations imposed by some tyrannical networks.


I guess more inventive examples can be found in other moe and fanservice anime, which I am not terribly familiar with. Although my impression is that their versatility lies in flashing panties and boobs at different angles and not really keen on activating our imagination. Feel free to add more ‘inventive’ ones (or any other type of interesting fanservice) you remember.


12 Responses to ““I guess one would have to be, inventive””

  1. coburn Says:

    This is something I’m interested in too, as it seems to link up well with Old Hollywood films. imo we are often worse off for being able to show things explicitly; censorship can act as an aid to metaphor. [http://claiming.wordpress.com/2008/03/06/in-which-i-go-to-the-cinema-and-wind-up-thinking-about-cartoon-penises/]

    I guess The Kiss often serves this role (although perhaps that’s not just in art). Not exactly at the same level as FLCL’s chin massage, or posing on the the car in Utena.

  2. Sorrow-kun Says:

    “(and again, FLCL just automatically comes to mind…what a perverted anime).”

    It’s a Gainax anime, so it’s rife with sexual metaphors. Some intentional, some not. 🙂

  3. animekritik Says:

    I didn’t know that about Aeon Flux. Some of those scenes were more erotic than explicit sex. FLCL is total pheromone madness.
    There are so many shows were I think, alright, that’s just cover for sex. But right now I can’t remember a single example. Darn.

  4. gaguri Says:

    Heh that’s a very well-written piece, which obviously covers more than what I have (my focus in this post specifically being limited to indirect sexual intercourse/sexual metaphors). Posted more comments on your blog.

    Hey Chief, didn’t think you’d ever pay a visit to this humble little place :D. Gainax sure likes to go crazy with sexual metaphors, Evangelion being one of them. They toned down a little in TTGL, but even that has some really funny ones (Yoko’s “Gattai?” being the timeless example).

    Aeon Flux I don’t think were sexually explicit. I didn’t find them erotic though, worked better as a comedy hehe. As for FLCL, couldn’t agree more. I wonder if it was just to engage the audience, or have a purpose behind it. Like you know, the boy’s coming-of-age and all.

    By the way, did you enjoy Aeon Flux? I thought it was a very rough gem, just the way I love it.

  5. animekritik Says:


    I might be completely wrong in my recollection here, but if I’m not mistaken Aeon Flux used to come just before or just after an music show called “120 minutes” that I used to watch religiously, so I’ve just caught snippets of it.

  6. If the networks’ censorship is producing interesting things like these examples for you to write about, their tyranny is fertile.

  7. Martin Says:

    FLCL certainly has a lot of innuendo, but then it fits perfectly with the point of view of the protagonist: confusion, rock and roll, boredom, sexual imagery, life getting turned upside down in general…the whole OAV feels like both a commentary on and tribute to the tumult of adolescence. FLCL isn’t about teenage frustration and confusion: it IS teenage frustration and confusion!

    I can’t think of many other examples outside of fanservice shows oddly enough, apart from the idea that tentacle hentai was allegedly a crafty way of showing pr0n without upsetting censors by drawing penises. Unless that’s another one of those urban legends that spring up around the subject.

  8. Sorrow-kun Says:

    “Hey Chief, didn’t think you’d ever pay a visit to this humble little place”

    I’ve been reading your stuff for a while, I just don’t always comment. Hey, this is one of the more interesting blogs on the interhavens, so keep up the good work.

  9. gaguri Says:

    Oh ok. I’ll recommend it anyway, as I think a person of wonderfully strange taste such as yourself would enjoy it.

    @The Animanachronism
    Assuming that epic choice of word is a typo, yes, their tyranny is futile against the might of our perverted minds 😀

    Coudldn’t agree more. To add my personal opinion on that, I think it’s interesting how Naota tries in vain to resist all these things stupid, sexy and exciting around him (via his exposure to Haruka mostly). It’s stupid adolescence, part of growing up, and he instead wants to attain fake adulthood (lol manly eyebrows). And episode 6 had to be one of the most beautiful and exciting piece of animation there is. Naota following Haruhi in her vespa, just having a silly blast, and the final kiss…o man.

    You are a Fool for trying to be Cool, and Cool for being a Fool. The message to take home from Fooly Cooly.

    Thanks for the generous compliment. That means a lot and is a huge encouragement 🙂

  10. Late to the party, but wasn’t Sousei no Aquarion one gigantic sex joke? The fact that the pilots in that series would moan orgasmically during the gattai sequences and a pilot feeling off his rocker due to sexual frustration (metaphorically done through the need to “gattai”) made for an amusing series all in all even if the quality is somewhat suspect. Maybe this is more blatant of an example than what you’re looking for, but it still fits.

  11. gaguri Says:

    I haven’t watched Sousei no Aquarion, but it sounds similar to FLCL’s approach to sexual innuendos. I think such gimmicks rely on variety and unpredictability, something FLCL is proud of, so I’m guessing pilots repeatedly moaning everytime they gattai kills all that, although I have to see it myself before coming to a valid conclusion.

  12. Massage Says:

    I guess The Kiss often serves this role (although perhaps that’s not just in art).

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s