Barron Trump is quickly becoming a manga idol in Japan, and if you’re not sure what that means, then buckle up, because this article is going to go to some really weird places.
First, some background: as you may or may not be aware, Barron Trump, who was born in 2006, is the youngest of Donald Trump’s children and will soon be the first small boy to live in the White House since John F. Kennedy, Jr. (Gerald Ford also had sons live in the White House for periods of time, but they were already adult men when their father was elected).
Young Master Barron also became something of a joke the evening of the election, when he was dragged out of bed at 3:00 a.m., dressed in his Sunday best, and put on stage with the rest of his family as his father gave his acceptance speech. As you would expect of a 10-year-old who would much rather be in bed, Barron looked simultaneously bored, sleepy, and wishing he could be anywhere else.
Right now you may be thinking, “That’s great and all, but what’s that got to do with Manga, or Japan? And what the heck is Manga and what does Barron Trump have to do with it?”
You see, Donald Trump is hugely popular in Japan, according to The Washington Post. He’s not “popular” in the sense that the Japanese people like him and think he’s a swell guy. More like, “popular” in the sense that he’s a huge joke that the Japanese people can’t get enough of.
— Anna Fifield (@annafifield) April 5, 2016
“I tolerated the pain to my head caused by the bleach and completed the second application. Wow, it’s a nice color! It has the air of a rich man!”
And that moment where Barron tried desperately to stay awake while his dad blathered on and on? It has inspired a manga cover.
— ホリユウスケ『ｼｬｯﾌﾙ学園』連載中 (@holico_studio__) November 9, 2016
As Rocket News explains, that’s manga artist Yuusuke Hori’s interpretation of that moment, and is also the cover of a planned (as in, not yet written) manga book, entitled My loud, annoying dad is president, so the quiet unassuming life I wanted is completely over. And for the record, Chapter 1 is tentatively entitled, “Also, my mom and sister are too sexy.”
In fact, Barron has now been given the title of “bishonen” in Japan, which means “beautiful boy.”
If you’re not familiar with manga, a little explanation is in order. Manga are a popular style of books in Japan, where people often spend long hours on trains during their daily commutes and enjoy some reading material. Sometimes (improperly) described as “comic books” in the U.S., manga uses hand-drawn images to tell the story.
And while the topics covered in manga can range from fantasy and horror to business and commerce, and everything in between, manga does have something of a reputation for… let’s call it blurring the lines of child pornography. As The Guardian reported in 2015, some manga contains graphic images of children being sexually abused.
Of course, that doesn’t necessarily mean that Barron Trump is going to be the subject of a sexually explicit manga, and quite frankly, I’d rather not think about that anymore. For now, let’s just hope that the next First Son remains something of a cute joke in Japan and that any manga about him play off of his strange life of living in the White House and having Donald Trump for a father – that’s disturbing enough.
As of this writing, it doesn’t appear that any Barron Trump manga has been produced, so don’t look for it on Amazon or your local book retailer just yet.
[Featured Image by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images, nagisa/Shutterstock]