Mawaru Penguindrum Volume 2 Rated '18' by BBFC
posted on by Andrew Osmond
Manga Entertainment notes on its twitter feed that the second volume of Mawaru Penguindrum (right) has been rated '18' by the BBFC. The BBFC's own page specifies that the '18' rating was given because of material in some or all of parts 13 to 16, which were judged to contain 'strong sexual threat.' The site does not go into any further detail about the reasons for the rating. The relevant episodes include (highlight for spoilers) the seduction of a teenage character by an adult, non-consensual bondage, and a subplot involving child abuse.
The episodes were passed uncut at the '18 rating. In comparison, in 2006 the third volume of Satoshi Kon's TV series Paranoia Agent was only passed at '18' on British DVD after 80 seconds of material was cut (BBFC page). The reason was material in part 8 of the series, in which (highlight for spoilers) a preteen girl joins a group of people planning to kill themselves; in the censored sequence, she jumps happily up and down with a noose around her neck.
The second volume of Mawaru Penguindrum is due for release on October 21. The story centers around three siblings, twins Kanba and Shouma, and their ill sister, Himari Takakura. In return for Himari's extended life, the twins must search for an item known as the Penguindrum with the aid of three penguins. Released in 2011, the series is Kunihiko Ikuhara's first major work since directing Revolutionary Girl Utena: The Movie in 1999.
All the other episodes of the series (1 to 12 and 17 to 24) are rated '12' on the BBFC website. However, the inclusion of parts 13 to 16 in the second box-set automatically raises its rating to 18.