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Genshiken: The Society for the Study of Modern Visual Culture, Volume 1 Paperback – April 26, 2005

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Del Rey (April 26, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0345481690
  • ISBN-13: 978-0345481696
  • Product Dimensions: 5 x 0.6 x 7.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,126,075 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Zack Davisson HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on November 20, 2005
Format: Paperback
"Genshiken" is a comic for the Super-Otaku. The references are obscure, the characters sometimes talk in quotes from favorite shows, and the Cosplay flows like fine wine. It is quite possible that I am not geeky enough, but it is still a wacky ride.

Drawn from the pages of "Afternoon," the fan magazine/comic book that is considered the most otaku of otaku magazines in Japan, "Genshiken" tells the tale of a group of misfits who pretend to study "Modern Visual Culture" (thus the name "Genshiken," taken from Gendai Shikaku Bunka Kenkyukai). Pretend to study, because they mainly sit around playing video games and trading porn mags.

Providing the story conflict are Kanji Sasahara, a new-comer who is not quite sure if he is an otaku or not and takes tentative steps towards his new lifestyle, and Saki Kasukabe, a typical "cool Japanese girl" who can't stand the fact that her handsome and stylish boyfriend, Makoto Kohsaka, is a complete and utter otaku. They disrupt the ordered lifestyle of the Genshiken Club, providing some much-needed chaos and hijinks for the nerdy crew.

A guided tour through Japanese otaku lifestyle, the Genshiken takes the neophyte Kanji to all the hotspots, like Akihaibara the electric town, and Comic Fest, the massive otaku convention for shopping and cosplay, They explain in detail each step of otakudom, educating the reader at the same time.

The story is a bit slow to begin with, but picks up when Saki arrives. She brings a much-needed female presence into the mix, and provides the anti-otaku stance. A later addition, cosplay fanatic Kanako Ohno, also livens it up with some sex appeal.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Animemorningstar on November 2, 2005
Format: Paperback
This series is for those who know what its like to be someone who knows more about comics, movies, etc., than what is going on in the "real world". If you're an otaku or just someone who growing up was a american comic collector will instantly recognize all the tell tale signs that yes this is what it was like growing up. Knowing the opening music of your favorite cartoon, knowing the lines of your favorite hero's creed, etc. All that and more is found in Genshiken, unlike other manga or what have you, with these characters you don't feel like you're getting to know them but have indeed grown up with them. I especially found the character designs to be great, seeing the look of terror on Sasshara's face was priceless as he was busted looking at the Genshiken's hentai collection. Also unlike countless manga out there where the characters are thin and beautiful these characters aren't (well at least most of them), and have a wide range of interests. From the cosplayer to the video game buff, almost everything is explored including adult oriented material. But most of all Genshiken perfectly portrays young adults who are comfortable being who they are even if that includes going to comic conventions whilst having to endure the pain of a broken wrist.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Colin on December 31, 2005
Format: Paperback
I seriously don't understand why more of you haven't read this book. It features one of the best and most memorable cast of characters in a manga that I have ever read. If you yourself are an otaku, this manga has at least one character you will find yourself saying,"Hey! Thats me!"

We start with a student, Kanji Sasahara, who is a shy young otaku, off at college. While searching through potential clubs to join, he finds the Society for the Study of Modern Visual Culture, aka, Genshiken. It takes some prodding from a member of the club, but he eventually joins this club after feeling a sort of bond with the other members.

Through out this manga, we are introduced to several different characters, Tanaka, a cosplayer. Madarame, a military sort of otaku, Kousaka, definately doesn't fit the traditional "look," of an otaku, but his interests are in the right place. Finally, his girlfriend, Saki, who absolutely hates his okatu-ism, but you see her becoming more and more sympathetic towards it as time goes by.

All in all, I would have to say this is one of the best purchases I have made, and I eagerly antcipate the fourth volume.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful A Kid's Review on July 24, 2005
Format: Paperback
The Otaku... Society's outcasts who care more about what happened on last night's episode of Fullmetal Alchemist than what happened on last night's episode of "Insert generic reality show/lovey dovey drama here".

"Genshiken: The Society for the Study of Modern Visual Culture" gives you a glimpse into their world, where magazines that would be considered "pornographic" are free game and where the unsuspecting regular kid is sucked into the world of the otaku.

The story is fairly simple, giving you a look at the otaku's lifestyle, and their ways of living.

Saki Kasukabe has a problem with her crush. He's an otaku. She's not. She tries to get him back to the "real world" futilely, and thus, he ends up joining the Genshiken club.

From there, we learn all about the Genshiken and their ways...

This book is a truly good read, however, it's rated 16+ for some pornographic hints, but that doesn't stop it from being one of the best books I've picked up this month. Go buy it and see how much of an otaku you REALLY are.
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