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Japanese graphic novel pulled from elementary

Wicomico County schools have removed Akira Toriyama’s “Dragon Ball” series of graphic novels from their elementary schools after a city councilman received a complaint from a mother of a nine-year-old. Upon review of the book, they discovered the book contained several depictions of nudity and sexual innuendo.

Mark Thompson, president of the county school board, said it appears grant funding — not county dollars — bought the books in question. He said county schools did not select the books individually because they came as part of a “bulk purchase.”

“The pictures I saw, if it was meant for adults, it crosses the line for child pornography. If it’s for a child, why show these scenes for children?” Thompson said.

The “Dragon Ball” books focus on Son Goku, a monkey-tailed boy on a quest to obtain mythical objects called Dragon Balls. The series was later adapted into a popular animated TV show called “Dragon Ball Z.”

Community Comments

#1 Garey Mckee
October/8/2009
@ 11:39 am

Don’t mock the great Vegita!

#2 Jesse Cline
October/8/2009
@ 11:41 am

that’s funny. Little Goku definitely shows his heiney in a lot of the old ones.

#3 Garey Mckee
October/8/2009
@ 11:54 am

Hmm I think I mocked Vegeta by not spelling his name correctly. Jesse, if we’re going to start throwing out every japanese comic that shows someone’s heiney we’re going to be here for a while!

#4 Jesse Cline
October/8/2009
@ 11:59 am

haha I know, and I like how they were fine with the violence, just not the heinies.

#5 Charles Brubaker
October/8/2009
@ 4:38 pm

And to think I used to read these comics in original Japanese when I was freaking FIVE.

But then, the standards for children’s entertainment is different in Japan than in US (I can vouch that alot of kids cartoons in Japan do contain nudity)

#6 Ted Dawson
October/9/2009
@ 8:38 am

I haven’t read these, but I’ve read enough comics at the library to know the librarians don’t screen them. Sure, the Abraham Lincoln graphic novel seems perfectly educational. But guess how a graphic novel portrays Lincoln getting shot in the head? And that’s not limited to books about Lincoln.

I have a sneaking suspicion Dragonball isn’t that bad. Parents & board members who get their issues in the news usually have a care of righteous indignation.

#7 Ted Dawson
October/9/2009
@ 8:39 am

… “case of” …

#8 Woodrow Barlettani
October/11/2009
@ 7:19 pm

I say make the school board and parents. watch continuos Viagra comerical’s, and tell the children what that is all about.

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