Well Grimms we did it!
We have discussed anime/manga representation for Lesbians, Gays, Bisexuals, Transgender and now finally Queers in the community! It has been a lot of fun doing this series for Pride month and it seems like many of you have enjoyed the ride as well. It is my goal to include more LGBTQ representation here on GrimmGirl throughout the year and not just during Pride month.
To close out this series I give you….
*Cue the fanfare!
Kasanoda is a character from the manga and anime High School Ouran Host Club. I’ve talked about Kasanoda before on GrimmGirl (feel free to check it out here at your leisure) because he’s such a well written character. For those of you who haven’t watched OHSHC I apologize in advance. In order to fully appreciate his character I’m going to have to bring up a spoiler or two.
Nothing HUGE but spoilers none the less.
The show is about a person named Haruhi who gets a scholarship to a super elite school full over ultra rich kids. One day Haruhi stumbles into the Host Club while trying to find a place to study. Caught off guard by the members of the Host Club Haruhi knocks into a vase worth waaaay more than anything in a spare music room should be worth. In order to pay off the debt Haruhi agrees to work as a member of the Host Club. It’s only later that the members discover Haruhi is a girl!
In order for her to continue work as a member of the Host Club she decides to maintain her boyish looks. Haruhi is honestly another great character to represent all the nonbinary and gender fluid folks out there. She makes it very clear she has no attachment to either gender. Preferring for people to come to their own conclusions.
In her mind gender labels mean very little.
Later in the series she meets Ritsu Kasanoda the son of a Yakuza boss who really just wants a friend. Haruhi is able to except Kasanoda as he is and this has a huge impact on him. He begins to develop feelings for Haruhi. When Kasanoda acknowledges these feelings he does so with the impression that he’s falling in love with a guy not a girl. It is only after these feelings have developed that he finds out Haruhi is a girl.
In his mind this is the first time he’s ever been attracted to a boy before. I’ve seen a lot of people identify him as bisexual before but I think Queer is a better term because it’s more of an umbrella term. Kasanoda is in the beginning stages of acknowledging his sexuality. Perhaps his attraction lies in people who are gender fluid or nonbinary or maybe he is attracted boys and girls in general. We don’t really know. What we do know is Kasanoda isn’t your average straight guy.
I have mentioned this before but Kasanoda is the true MVP of OHSHC. There is so much sexual, physical, and emotional violence members of the LGBTQ face on a daily basis. This is one of the reasons we have PRIDE month. To raise awareness of the issues members of the community face everyday and to make sure that the violence against them isn’t normalized any longer.
Haruhi is gender fluid/non binary and the fact that Kasanoda is attracted to her shouldn’t shake his sexuality to the point of violence. Even when Haruhi makes it clear that she just sees him as a friend he resolves to be the best friend he can be to her. Again do you realize how often men resort to violence when their sexual advances are denied? Especially when the person refusing them identifies as trans, gender fluid, or non binary?
I’ll give you a hint. So often that when a character accepts the fact that he is being rejected as a romantic love interest like a decent human being we through a party. That’s right. The bar is set so low that when I saw Kasanoda wasn’t getting violent and lashing out at Haruhi I was like, “Awww how sweet! This is revolutionary!”
We see violence against members of the LGBTQ community so often in media and in real life that we’ve become desensitized by it. How often have we seen a story where a woman is beaten because her boyfriend found out she was trans and the comment section is flooded with people agreeing with his behavior? How many times has a bisexual or lesbian women been raped to “cure” her? How many times has a gay man been beaten or killed for looking at a straight man in the, “wrong way”? How many members of the LGBTQ community been kicked out of their homes, disowned by family and friends, rebuked by the church, denied work and the privilege to parent, refused medical care, beaten, humiliated, sexually assaulted or raped all for being what… who the are?
And how long will we continue to let this violence and hatred be considered normal over the rights of people just being who they are? I have had so much fun writing this post series but there’s also a deep sadness I feel that Pride month is necessary. That humanity has fallen so short that we need a Pride month so that the LGBTQ community can actually be heard.
I fight for a day when the voices of the LGBTQ community are heard so loudly and clearly it is impossible for society to ever ignore them or push them aside ❤ Having positive LGBTQ representation in media is one way we can help make that possible.
*I do not own these images