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) described the otaku as "Japan's socially inept but often brilliant technological shut-ins," a bit of conventional wisdom that lives on both abroad and in the country itself.
It’s no coincidence the story echoes much of the overheated early-1990s fears about hackers, but otaku culture had one singular event that never afflicted hacker culture: a serial killer (excepting, of course, Matthew Lillard's star-making turn as "Cereal Killer" in (1995).
They also found a collection of 5,763 videotapes, many of them anime and slasher films.
Subsequent critics have asked whether authorities exaggerated Miyazaki’s otaku-ness to help secure a conviction; the press, meanwhile, dubbed him "The Otaku Killer." As Galbraith explains, the figure of Miyazaki still haunts the public perception of otaku.
Galbraith describes a long-running power politics surrounding the subculture.
"The ‘bad’ otaku shuts off from society, in a room with the objects of consumption, not participating in ‘normal’ forms of social formation," he says.
Arguably, the United States comics scene still doesn’t have the artistic breadth or artistic cachet of its Japanese counterparts.
Perhaps because of this larger cultural role, the definition and understanding of otaku has long been contentious.
Searching his home, they found evidence he’d murdered four young girls.
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(Wired wrote, "The police believe the Tsutomu Miyazaki case was an exception, not an omen for the future," reassuring particularly skittish readers.) Galbraith says Japanese media persistently associated Miyazaki with otaku; the image of his room — unoccupied and windowless, with videotapes stacked to the ceiling around a small, rumpled bed — became the dominant impression of an entire subculture.
Commentators suggested in that room, with so many fictional worlds within easy reach, Miyazaki could not longer distinguish between fantasy and reality.
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