The book Massive: Gay Erotic Manga and the Men Who Make It, a new anthology of husky gay erotica, explores the type of gay manga that features hyper-masculine men drawn by gay men for gay male readers. Widely referred to as “bara” (as opposed to “yaoi”, which is gay male manga produced by and for women, the term is not generally outside of Western culture and its corners of the Internet, since, as it turns out, “bara” is actually an antiquated slur for gay people in Japan.
One of the iconic artists, the artist known as Jiraiya, has become more well-known to American audiences thanks to a clothing line that features his work — with its big burly Japanese men — that has become a cult fashion hit thanks to a sold-out selection featured during NYC Pride at Opening Ceremony.
Now the secretive gay illustration legend (he doesn't like to show his face in photographs), responsible for decades of iconic G-Men cover illustrations and bath house pin-up art — as well as some of the most collected and celebrated gay graphic novels in Japanese — is coming to America.
It's his first time traveling to the States — and his first time outside of Japan, for that matter. He'll be in Los Angeles March 17-19, San Francisco March 20-21, and end in New York City March 24-28. Oh, and while he is happy to meet fans: No photos of his face allowed.