Why Naruto is a queer issue
I still can’t believe how some people are unable to accept that homosexual subtext does indeed exist in Naruto, and that it is a queer issue. They even go as far as to ignore the romantic elements in SNS. For those who struggle to explain these persons let them show the following prove. (Bear in mind that English is not my mother tongue):
1) Homosexual Subtext: http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/HomoeroticSubtext
“Though romance is important in many works, bonds of friendship between those of the same sex form some of fiction’s most significant relationships. One common method of playing with these close relationships is to portray them similarly to romantic relationships, though the characters may feel nothing sexual for one another. For example, two male friends may bicker in an exaggerated manner, mirroring how television normally depicts husbands and wives, or one friend may voice jealousy of another with lines lovers normally use.
The juxtaposition is often Played for Laughs, especially with male characters. Other such scenes may attempt fanservice, particularly when the characters arethe opposite gender of the intended demographic. Rarer, the subtext is Played for Drama, using common romance tropes to heighten the strength of the relationship, although whether this means the writer supports interpretations that the relationship is romantic is usually left ambiguous.“
→ According to this text homosexual subtext does not necessary change the nature of a relationship. They can exist to strengthen the bond, and both person of the same gender can still be friends. The SNS kiss was played for laughs, however, according to this text, this is homosexual subtext. The sexy no jutsu in men version is also played for laughs. Following the definition this is clearly homosexual subtext. Now, let’s check out the line “I will die with you” which is a common line in romantic literature, by the way. The fact it was used for NH with romantic purposes just stresses the fact.
The moment when Naruto said to Sasuke “If you attack the Hidden Leaf, I’ll have no choice; I will fight you, don’t doubt that… Until that day, save your hatred. Then you can throw all of it right at me. I’m the only one who can handle all that hate! Do you understand? I’m the only one who can fulfill that duty, so I’ll bear the burden of your hatred, and I’ll die with you! Because you’re my friend!“, strengthened again how important Sasuke was to Naruto. The moment stressed their bond. Thus fulfilling the definition above. So we have clearly homosexual subtext. Now, let me quote this:
“Also, when Naruto said he wanted to die with Sasuke, people tend to forget that what he meant by that was that if he couldn’t convince and come to an understanding with Sasuke while alive., he would still try in death, where no label and no heritage would be in the way. No more Uchiha or jinchuriki. Just Naruto and Sasuke.
Now… Do you know what Juliet said to Romeo? She told him to forsake his name. In this case, their family/blood were coming in the way of their love. Naruto pulled something straight out of one of the greatest love story of all time.”
And if these examples are not enough, then let me show you the following link that lists all homosexual subtext between Naruto and Sasuke in the manga and in the anime: http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/HoYay/Naruto
2) Queer-baiting: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Queer_baiting
The term refers to what happens “when people in the media (usually television/movies) add homoerotic tension between two characters to attract more liberal and queer viewers with the indication of them not ever getting together for real in the show/book/movie.”
As this definition states, a queer relationship or character is hinted at to attract/appeal to the queer market, and then is denied, either modifying the character’s behavior (making them enter a heterosexual relationship), playing it off as a joke (sometimes a recurring joke or trope), or denying the assumptions (in interviews, panels and such) without modifying the character’s behavior.
→ I wonder if people are still trying to deny this? Are they still trying to deny there’s no homosexual subtext and no queer-baiting? Even though I’ve shown the definitions and countless of examples of homosexual subtext? So following logic and the claim “There is no homosexual subtext, romantic elements in SNS or queer-baiting” this would mean these definitions are wrong. Then explain me why are they not corrected? How did you learn that these definitions have another meaning? Where did you learn them? Are they valid? Do you have any proves to support your opinion? I’m also eager to hear how you can present a friendship between two persons of the same genders and strengthen their bond without these “supposed fake and non-existent homosexual subtext” who follow common literal rules and classic romance? How? And when Naruto wanted to die with Sasuke because he couldn’t bear the thought of how lonely his best friend would be without him, you want me to accept that his words or let alone the moment didn’t stress how important Sasuke was to him? You want to undermine the bond despihe fact that it is acknowledged they do have one of the strongest bond in the story? Because following logic, no homosexual subtext means no development of a strong bond.
3) Naruto is a queer issue:
Now, let me quote what a woman said:
“When you tease an LGBT ship, or queer-bait, you hurt people. It is not good or helpful to give LGBT a fucking shimmer of hope that they may finally be represented, only to throw them under the damn steamroller that is your heterosexual ship when the time comes right. It hurts our community and it hurts our chances of being represented by spreading the message that heterosexual relationships are more important than queer relationships. Queer baiting is harmful, toxic, and a major problem.
Don’t you see a problem when networks queer-bait to keep both their heterosexual but homophobic fans as well as queer fans who put up with heteronormativity but are getting quite sick and tired of it? Queer ships are hope for people. Queer-baiting is the process of offering tons of queer subtext, only to take it right back in fear of losing the heterosexual [but homophobic] audience.
When offered subtext, queer people will and should grab onto it. It is their sliver of hope. This is why when [queer] shippers analyze things closely and deeply, you should not tell them to stop, you should not invalidate their analyses, and you should never tell them that they are reading too much into it. It is the only thing they may get in terms of representation, it’s all we fucking have, and if it helps us identify with these characters and see themselves in this media, you better damn well shut your mouth. When someone points out queer subtext, instead of invalidating it with one of the bulleted statements above, instead either acknowledge it, or ask the person who pointed it out to explain it to you if you don’t understand. DO NOT INVALIDATE IT.
Say you’re at a feast with a large group of people. It’s a feast of wonderful, colorful and milky desserts. Now imagine very few of the guests are lactose intolerant. Now eating the desserts will not kill the people, but it makes it painful and harms them, whereas everyone else is stuffing themselves fat with joy. They don’t see the lactose intolerance and they don’t feel it, so they do not see a problem. The lactose intolerant people request and request for a dessert that they can eat, that they can enjoy, since they were born with this lactose intolerance, but the people who are happily eating keep quieting them and telling them at they should enjoy the food that’s given to them, and even more, should be happy that there are such delicious desserts being offered to them. When suggested they should alter the meal so that it’s all lactose free, the people who were happily eating refuse because they think it will 1) alter the taste of their food, 2) will taste of lesser quality, and 3) may be harmful to them in some way.
Fans of hetero ships will never hear many of the things bulleted up there, and if they do, boo-fucking-hoo. It’s not something you often hear. It’s something that we, as LGBT, hear all the fucking time. And we’re sick of it. It’s shaped society’s views on us, it’s harmful to us, in a way that it isn’t to you.“
→ When people invalidate homosexual subtext or the romantic elements in SNS, let me ask you this: Are people like the woman I quoted delusional for being hurt by queer-baiting? It’s not like according to the definition homosexual subtext is offered to (homosexual) fans who feel hope that they might finally be represented. It’s not like these hopes are crushed because their favourite characters enter a heterosexual relationship. Thus feeling hurt. So you want to support a system where it is allowed to bait homosexual fans because of gaining more money, and hurt them by crushing their hopes? You want to erase the homosexual subtext they might cling to? You want to invalidate the only thing they have? You want to hurt them? You do realise that this is homophobic?.
Conclusion: Naruto is indeed a queer issue like many other series.