It's Not My Fault That I'm Not Popular
Hits a little bit too close to home ;_;
It's Not My Fault That I'm Not Popular (私がモテないのはどう考えてもお前らが悪い in Japanese) or WataMote for short, is a comedy/high school manga series by Nico Tanigawa that follows the life of an unpopular, lonely, shy, anti-social, creepy, insane, self-conscious, virgin 15-year old otaku (just like every /a/non and /v/irgin in general) girl named Tomoko Kuroki who seeks to fit in high school, become popular and find a boyfriend. After spending "50 years" and "dating 100 guys" in her otome games (in Moonspeak, an otome game is a video game targeted towards women that's basically a dating sim), Tomoko absentmindedly believes that with her "experience" in the world of dating, she'll be well prepared for high school. Though this is far from the truth. Instead, Tomoko's experience is nothing at all what she would have imagined, and due to her being so self-conscious, when someone talks to her for simple reasons such as asking what the time is, she'll question everything, excitedly wondering if a boy is trying to flirt with her or if there's some sort of ulterior motive.
Because of how much they can relate to Tomoko's expense, the manga series has become a hit on 4chan boards such as /a/, which in turn spread to /jp/ and /v/. /a/ absolutely adores Tomoko Kuroki, feeling sorry for her and wanting her to succeed in her journey of acquiring popularity. It's gained a cult following similarly to how Katawa Shoujo has on said boards. In fact, Tomoko's life sums up the lives of many otaku when they were in high school, being so close to the truth that it hurts, not to mention Tomoko herself is an otaku that plays H-games. The manga is not translated by a professional translating company, although /a/nons have taken the initiative of scanlating it, though these are typically rushed and can be translated very badly.
Upon looking at herself in the mirror after so many years of gluing her eyes to a bright LCD screen playing video games, Kuroki Tomoko discovers the devastating realization that she's not the beautiful girl that all the boys lust after like she had initially thought, dropping her ego like a stone. Despite rarely, if ever, given any attention, she is an attention whore although her lack of communication, social and people skills make things a lot harder for someone to notice her. Tomoko desribes herself as a mojo (meaning creepy woman), which the requirements of being are:
- Having no social contact with opposing sex.
- Not being confessed by a man before.
- Being a virgin.
Her quest of trying to be more social and acquiring friends usually end up humorously thwarted, and she'll go to extreme and completely awkward lengths to find out what boys like in a girl and become more popular. At times, she's very hard on herself, saddened by her flaws such as being short or flat-chested. She also has very bad luck with just about everything, ensuing her a comically doomed ending. Tomoko is known to annoy her younger brother, who is the only boy she doesn't have a hard time talking to, to an immeasurable degree. Additionally, she seems quite bi-polar, given her self-esteem tends to flicker back and forth from being self-consciously depressed to confident about her appearance and life.
The manga is published online by Square Enix, and is currently showcased on their website. The manga was first released sometime in 2011, and was discovered on /a/ around late summer where it began to become one of /a/'s latest obsessions. From there, it was also discovered by a lurking /v/irgin, thus its spread and bandwagon hopping on /v/ and eventually other boards followed in suit. This in turn angered /a/, given their elitist and hipster attitudes and their bad history with /v/.
Tomoko was also commonly used on one of the more annoying green text copypasta threads on /v/, a meme called spaghetti threads or spaghetti stories. These threads consist of telling a story of regretful and/or embarrassing experiences, and at the end, the story would end with spaghetti falling out of the poster's pocket. Given that Tomoko's life is full of bad and humiliating experiences, she was deemed perfect for these threads and was labeled as "Spaghetti-tan".
Tomoko is also used for many reaction faces due to the ridiculousness, humor and the empathy channers share with her (i.e. justkillmenow.jpg) making her a good choice for displaying your emotions for certain posts.
There are currently 4 volumes as of now.
It still remains a popular manga for western otaku who too share the bitter loneliness that Tomoko feels, though strangely enough it's not as popular in Japan.
Advertising for the manga's third volume in December brought hope for an anime adaption of the series, something that /a/ had long hoped for. On December 20, 2012, it was officially revealed that the series had indeed been green-lit for an anime. No word on when exactly the series will premiere or which animation studio will be in charge of delivering it.
- While it's not very popular in Japan, it's very popular within the 4chan community. The publishers have even acknowledged this, adding "A smash hit on the overseas version of 2chan!!" at the bottom of the first volume
- Kuroki Tomoko basically personifies /a/, and one can even suggest she'd make a good candidate for the board's mascot
- The usual thread relating to the manga will typically turn into FEEL threads
- Kuroki Tomoko is occasionally referred to as "Spaghetti-tan", although only by /v/irgins and newfags. In fact, one will instantly get saged in the event they call Tomoko by that name on /a/
- The first volume has sold over 100,000 copies
- A group of /a/nons banded together and sent multiple pictures of their penises to the creator of the manga. /a/ claims they weren't responsible (or at least not fully) and shifted the blame on /v/ on some other boards
- In an interview, the mangaka was asked a question about the penis situation, "What did you think when Americans sent you pictures of their penises?" She responded, "I was confused at first because I'd never seen one before."
Calling Tomoko "Spaghetti-tan" is like calling the Troll face "Cool face". It's both annoyingly incorrect and is deserving of a ban.
At least she's loved by somebody