Wednesday, August 03, 2016

Falling Eggplants and Gay Pixels

For all but the deepest subset of the Venn diagram overlap of nerds and homosexuals, this may well be your introduction to the bizarre gayness that is Cho Aniki. I’m honored to extend the opportunity.

I’m still on my kick about being from the generation of pixels and VHS static, and I’m still mucking around with weird video clips and lesser-known pop songs from the era as part of a larger project. I’m not quite sure yet what, exactly, that project will turn out to be, but at the very least it will be interesting to look at.

Yesterday, I finished one chunk of it that may just merit a post on its own. Here, please enjoy inasmuch as it can be enjoyed.

If your response to all this is “Wait, what the fuck?” then you are correct! This is footage from Cho Aniki, a Japanese video game series whose name translates as “Super Big Brother” and whose chief contribution to the world is a lot of nonsensical homoerotic imagery. The games have largely not been released outside Japan, and consequently a lot of people in the U.S. don’t know that it even exists, despite it being one of the stranger assemblages of pixels ever. This particular clip comes from a playthrough of the second game in the series, 1995’s Ai Cho Aniki. (The original video has been edited, truncated and manipulated. The song I synced to it is “Happy Station” by Fun Fun. Also also, what is the deal with Japan and eggplants?)

And if you’re interested, here’s another piece of the puzzle: the disco sequence from the Bollywood Nightmare on Elm Street, manipulated and destroyed, with another italo disco gem added in.

The song is “Follow Me” by Giusy Dej, BTW. Happy Cho Aniki Awareness Day!


  1. In the right context (see: Cho Aniki), eggplants are Japan's equivalent to cucumbers: wink-wink-nudge-nudge phallic stand-ins, also used as masturbatory aids. The correlation may be more widely understood outside Japan these days as people use the eggplant emoji to convey the same concept.

    1. That doesn't surprise me, I suppose, but I'm wondering if it explains Nintendo's fixation on them. Because it's Nintendo, they show up in not-seemingly-sexual scenarios, but they do show up a lot. Maybe it's just that eggplants occupy a bigger place in Japanese culture than they do in the U.S.?

    2. I think that's a big part of it, yes. For example, an eggplant is one of the most auspicious things you can dream of in your first dream of the new year, so they're generally a benign/positive thing. As you mentioned in your other eggplant post, I think someone at Nintendo during a certain period of time just liked the damn things...and sometimes an eggplant is just an eggplant. :)