Japanese TV Drama’s Gay Character Sign of LGBTQ Acceptance or Just Opportunism?

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10/18/2021

The recent Tokyo Olympics offered hopes of Japan adopting more nuanced and inclusive views of LGBTQ lifestyles and challenges. As an example, 2018 saw the first-ever openly gay character in an asadora (Japanese TV morning drama). The overtly stereotyped role, however, only represented minor progress for Japan and its media. This is according to Timo Thelen, an associate professor at Japan’s Kanazawa University. Thelen critiqued and contextualized the show in his study recently published in the journal, Japanese Studies.

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