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Christian Denominations Get Anthropomorphized in New Manga

posted on by Eric Stimson
Main character embodies Puritanism

Anthropomorphization, or gijinka in Japanese, is evidently a trend in modern Japanese pop culture. From battleships (Kantai Collection) to operating systems (the OS-tans), from countries (Hetalia - Axis Powers) to fungi (Kinoko Collection), there doesn't seem to be anything that can't be turned into a human character (and they're usually cute girls). Next up: Christian denominations.

The long-running Japanese Christian newspaper Christ Weekly has introduced a new comic strip, Puritan, which represents Christianity's various sects as people. While details are scarce thus far, the main character, "Puritan" — a bespectacled middle school student — and her older brother, Kaikakuha-kun ("Reformed Church"), have been introduced.

The manga will run alternately with Dendō Sentai Kyōkaiger ("Missionary Proclaimers Church-ger", where the kanji for "Sentai" is a pun for those seen in tokusatsu series but is replaced with the kanji for "proclaim"), a series of essays written by pastors. Reaction on the Internet is mixed, with some calling the subject a "land mine" and warning against mocking religious beliefs, while others noted how cute Puritan was ("I'm converting," claimed one).

The Bible has been adapted into a manga and Saint Young Men shows Jesus and Buddha living together, but as Christians are a tiny minority in the predominantly Shintō and Buddhist Japan, Christian subject matter is rarely addressed seriously in pop culture.

Translation updated, thanks kuron3kosama

[Via Kai-You and RocketNews24]

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