Comic Market, or Comiket, is a twice yearly event that showcases self-published comics. In the past, it's also showcased obscene amounts of flesh. Real flesh.
Like most nerd events, Comiket is a cosplay magnet. Cosplayers, like Ushijima Good Meat, not only pose for pictures, but they also sell their own CD-ROMs filled with sexy photos. Since the pictures leave little to the imagine, so do the cosplays.
Apparently, that is going to change.
Summer is when cosplay gets skimpy, and Comiket is where it gets skimpier. According to tabloid Tokyo Sports (via Hachima), cosplayers have been notified about new rules and regulations for Comiket. Failing to follow them could result in a misdemeanor.
Tokyo Sports reported that outfits that display underwear or genitals are banned. Ditto for any outfits that place extreme emphasis on genitals, they are also banned. Not wearing underwear is banned. Those who wear swimsuits also must wear underwear or undergarments. Cosplayers must wear tights and stockings to mute excess skin.
One of the most radical changes is that at most a third of female cosplayers' breasts can be exposed, and underwear can not be seen. "There are lots of cosplayers who get in shape for this event and who love being fussed over by photographers. Those girls are going to be devastated by these new regulations," one female cosplayer told Tokyo Sports. "Young girls, cute girls, busty girls and girls in racy outfits are all popular. It's a fantasy world."
Inside Comiket, it is a fantasy world, with erotic manga, erotic statues, and adult photos all available for purchase. But when real sexuality is on display, it often causes event promoters to crackdown. Another fantasy world, the ChinaJoy gaming convention also attempted to regulate outfits worn by booth companions. Likewise, sexy booth babes were banned at the E3 gaming convention a few years back.
At Comiket last December, there were huge mobs for several cosplayers, and the new regulations could hope to reduce crowding. There are also questions of public decency that come into play. Whether wearing tights or covering boobs more is the answer is debatable. In the past, Japan has overcome pornography censorship in a variety of clever and unusual ways. Expect the same for these cosplay regulations.
This year's Comic Market will be held between August 12 and 14.