"Did someone just say weeaboo?"The Phenotype Stereotype-afflicted Westerner with beyond stereotypical Otaku interests sometimes seen in Anime. Their interests provide an excuse for their Anime Accent Absence (they learned Japanese from anime) and gives them a reason for interacting with native otaku. Frequently overlaps with Yaoi Fangirl. A sub-trope of Foreign Culture Fetish.
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Anime & Manga
- FBI Special Agent Katie Lindberg in Alyosha!. She's very excited when she's sent to Japan undercover as a high school student, because she's really into Japanese culture — at least, her understanding of it. She cosplays when on an outing to Akihabara with a friend (and rode the train there wearing the costume), and she can't get over the fact that Alyosha is a real maid. Alyosha, who comes from the fictional Ruritania nation of Estolakia, has some elements of this as well, but her fascination with Magical Girl anime is largely due to her never having a real childhood.
- France and Canada of Axis Powers Hetalia.
- And speaking of dorky Western otaku scientists, Alec from Ayashi no Ceres.
- In the Baccano!! Light Novels, Firo (an Italian-American teenager who has never left the States in the last seventy-two years) shocks a Japanese tourist by conversing with him in almost disturbingly fluent Japanese. When asked, he claims that he learned it from reading raw manga (well, and Yagumo taught him some 19th century Japanese, but that's besides the point).
- Isaac and Miria also speak Japanese... in prohibition-era America. No explanation is ever given, but it's Isaac and Miria. It should be noted that they later appeared in a cameo in the Durarara!! anime, implying that they apparently move to/visit Japan at some point... though this doesn't explain how they learned to speak Japanese in the first place.
- Dino in Blend-S is an Italian affected by Phenotype Stereotype that owns a Cosplay Café in Japan, watches Otaku O'Clock anime on a regular basis, and said to be "changing waifus every three months."
- Darker Than Black has an Israeli one who came to Japan to study animation, as he believes it’s the world’s finest. He speaks with a varying degree of a foreign accent... which doesn’t sound remotely Israeli.
- Anthony from Doki Doki School Hours.
- Elena Peoples in Eureka Seven AO, who, as revealed in a Newtype issue, is actually an American — she's too much of an Ambiguously Brown Mukokuseki to notice it outright.
- Sandora from Excel Saga: in episode 17 he draws Puni Puni Poemi. That said, in episode 17 everyone Excel and Hyatt meet in America seems to have some familiarity with anime — the hood rats who accost them when they first arrive flip out when animation cels from Puni Puni Poemi start falling from the sky, and the mafioso they face at the end recognizes Sailor Moon and thinks it's old hat.
- Jeremy Watt from the NASA Aliens in Eyeshield 21. Despite being pretty familiar with the Japanese language, he's laughably (and absurdly) uninformed. For example, he somehow thinks that everyone who plays go is named Hikaru... which means that he would have to be familiar with Hikaru no Go in the first place, which would mean he would never come to a conclusion like that. Nobody who had gotten as far as he has in studying Japanese would think samurai would commit ritual suicide with chopsticks... though you could blame this on Rule of Funny.
- This all started when he saw a skilled linebacker from Japan, which somehow led to him thinking "Man, samurai are so cool..."
- Angela and Sue, Ohno's American friends from Genshiken, are heavily into yaoi, though unlike the others on this list they do not really speak Japanese.
- Sue does. 90% of her spoken lines are anime quotes (she has a very broad list to draw from). It's implied that she's pretty bilingual, but hides behind the quotes.
- Tom of High School Ninja Girl, Otonashi-san is an Eaglelander who is a big fan of ninjas. As a result, he eagerly makes himself the apprentice of Fuka Otonashi, but he has a very fantastical idea of what ninjas actually are capable of.
- Alice in Ikoku Meiro no Croisée is a 19th-century French version. Obviously, given the time period, ukiyo-e prints and kimonos take the place of anime and video games as focal points of interest. Like more modern examples of this trope, however, she's just as clueless as to the difference between her understanding of Japan and actual Japanese culture.
- In comedic Infinite Stratos spin-off manga, one of Laura's German subordinates has enthusiastically studied Japanese culture by way of games, anime, and manga, and regularly gives her advice on fitting in in Japan and pursuing Ichika.
- Miria from Jewelpet Twinkle is American. She likes manga and cosplay, and whenever she goes to Japan she takes the opportunity to buy loads of merchandise.
- Pina Sformklan Estor from Ladies Versus Butlers!, princess of a small Scandinavian country, is possibly among the most absurd. While she occasionally acts shy at first, she's quite willing to lecture people about how underappreciated anime is as a cultural medium, or how ridiculous she finds it that a Japanese school would place old European literature above modern manga. She's in fact in Japan partially for research, as her nation's main entertainment industry is imported anime. She's also a Cosplay Otaku Girl who spends most evenings wandering the grounds dressed as a Magical Girl Warrior with a hammer almost as big as she is.
- Patricia Martin from Lucky Star: Introduced working alongside Konata at the Cosplay Café wearing full Mikuru regalia. Her whole purpose comes down to being a way for the creators to (gently) parody Western fans. Heck, her knowledge of the Japanese language and culture is derived solely from fansubbed anime and manga. Not to mention she's also a requisite Yaoi Fangirl. In universe, Konata and Hiyori hit it off with her pretty quickly, and her more Occidental Otaku moments mostly get written off to her being a foreign Bunny-Ears Lawyer.
- Lindy Harlaown from Lyrical Nanoha, although she's more foreign than most examples. She drinks green tea (incorrectly), has a room on her ship set up to look like a Japanese garden (complete with The Thing That Goes "Doink!"), and is aware of Magical Girl Anime. The second movie ramps it up when she's shown to own a paper lantern, a tengu mask, a sai, a teapot, and a log with shuriken embedded in it. She even moves to Japan full-time after the events of the second season, although that was mainly so her newly adopted daughter could stay with her friends.
- Subverted with Graham Aker from Mobile Suit Gundam 00. True, he's American and a fanatical Japanophile, but he also studied under actual Japanese people, is extremely competent in the culture and language, and treats his passion with sincere respect, even though to a casual observer he seems like the typical example of this trope. Examples of his activities include having a Mid-Season Upgrade called the Susanowo, named after Shinto deity Susanno'o. Getting nicknamed "Mr. Bushido". It seems he also took up Buddhist teachings from a master in Japan as seen in flashbacks. When he sees Setsusna face to face (and naked) in the burst of GN Particles, he even asked if he was in Nirvana.
- Of course, in 00, America and Japan are now technically part of the same country.
- A newer Gundam example is Black and Nerdy Teen Genius Nils Nielsen from Gundam Build Fighters who not only uses Samurai-themed Gunpla, the 侍ノ弐 Sengoku Astray Gundam (the prefix is officially written in Kanji even when the rest is in roman characters, it literally means "Samurai Unit 2) but dresses up as a Ninja to spy on Chairman Mashita and Baker. He also holds knowledge of various Asian martial-arts techniques, not just Japanese.
- Frank from Nodame Cantabile.
- One is interviewed in Otaku no Video. Interestingly, though he is dubbed over in Japanese, one who knows both languages can easily spot that the dub is intentionally written to make him sound like much more of a weeaboo.
- Otomen has Mifune Knight, a blond and (presumably) blue-eyed American who teaches Japanese history at a Japanese high school, and is obsessed with Japanese history, culture and the true Japanese Spirit. Apparently he inherited it from his equally Japan-crazy father who actually built a hilariously inaccurate Jidai Geki Theme Park.
- Ouran High School Host Club has a couple characters from overseas who develop an obsession with Japanese culture:
- Renge is the series' archetype of an Otaku, to the point where her existence revolves around character analysis. It's a little bit scary, to say the truth. She moves to Japan from France to meet Kyoya, solely because she saw a photograph of him and he resembled a character in her favourite game.
- When Kyoya and Tamaki first meet Kyoya wonders if he's "one of those westerners who're interested in Japanese culture". But Tamaki is actually half Japanese, although he'd never set foot there before that point and his knowledge of Japan comes from his dad's stories. Which are wildly inaccurate, either because he's wealthy and out of touch or he's just screwing with his son.
- Isaac, the Dutch diplomat in Samurai Champloo is sort of a joking reference to this trope, as he is a Westerner who tends to prefer Japanese culture to his own. Another reason he loves Japanese culture so much is because of pre-Meiji Japan's attitude towards homosexuality: He is Straight Gay and could be called a Yaoi Fanboy.
- Ivan Karelin, a Russian Ninja-themed superhero from Tiger & Bunny, wears his love of Japan on his sleeves — quite literally◊, in fact.
- Tonari no Kashiwagi-san has Tina, a German exchange student who originally got into anime and manga thanks to her long time boyfriend (who grew up with her in Germany before moving back to Japan).
- In Zettai Karen Children, The Ex-Black Phantom Espers are some of the most Otaku-like characters in the series (The two guys are constantly going on about Moe and 2D, the girl is a Yaoi Fangirl), but it is heavily suggested that they are not from Japan. Also one of the Comerica agents is heavily into Traditional Japanese culture, rather than Otaku culture.
- Centorea Shianus, the centaur-girl from Daily Life with Monster Girl, can be considered this since she has all the visual traits associated with Nordic/European foreigners (flowing blonde hair, blue eyes and a big bust) and yet she's the only one in the house to live in a Japanese-styled room complete with tatami, appears to be knowledgeable about anime tropes like Crash-Into Hello, and recognizes slimes as a species from old-style JRPGs.
- Rias Gremory, from High School D×D. She has a strong appreciation for Japanese culture, everything from the food to the spirituality, to the point where she sets up her base of operations there. Her first interaction with her future Queen was to compliment native-born Akeno's black hair. What puts Rias in a class above is that she's Pure Devil - born in Hell - and still finds Japanese culture that fascinating.
- The "J-Pop America Funtime Now" sketches on Saturday Night Live, featuring two college-age anime fans who've added "-San" onto their very non-Japanese names.
Their horrified Asian Studies Professor: "If there is such a thing as a loving form of racism, you've found it."
- Bert Cooper on Mad Men is a japanophile, which features in one episode when SCDP meets with Honda. He also makes people take off their shoes in his office.
- This has been a major part of Kenny Omega's gimmick for the longest time, especially when he works in Japan as a part of Dramatic Dream Team or NJPW. He's a humongous fan of Japanese anime and video games, particularly Capcom games like Street Fighter, which he's taken ideas from for his move names, such as his "V-Trigger" knee and his "Flash Man's Time Stopper" enzuigiri. Even when he turned heel and became a member of Bullet Club (a group of Foreign Wrestling Heels), it's clear that the otaku in him is still there, even when he denounces Japan in the process.
- Otacon from Metal Gear. The mecha genre is one of the main reasons he wanted to work in robotics. His nickname comes from a popular anime convention.
- There's also Para-Medic, who loves everything about Japan, especially cinema. In the mid-1960s, no less. In Metal Gear Solid 4 it's revealed she even has a Japanese assistant, whose mitochondrial DNA she used to create Snake and his brothers.
- Played with by Revolver Ocelot, a Soviet (born technically French) agent who obsesses over American culture. He dresses like a cowboy, uses revolvers and named himself after an American wild cat. It may not surprise you to learn at the end of the third game that he's actually loyal to the US government, and his mother was American.
- The Silvermans from Persona 2 are obsessed with traditional Japanese culture, much to their daughter Lisa's chagrin.
- The vaguely effeminate French exchange student Andre Laurent Jean Geraux (AKA, Bebe) from Persona 3.
- No More Heroes: Travis Touchdown is the very embodiment of this trope, down to his pink Magical Girl t-shirt and beam katana. That's right, he has a working Laser Blade that he won off an online auction. He uses it to kill stuff.
- He started killing stuff, in fact, so that he would have something to do with his new working beam katana. (Turns out it's actually a bit more complicated.)
- Mr. Sunnyside from Sakura Wars: So Long My Love is obsessed with Japanese culture to the point of building a massive Japanese style mansion in the middle of Central Park in New York City!
- Gemini Sunrise is a big fan of Japan, as well: she's particularly taken with stories of samurai, going so far as to train under a Japanese swordsman in America and wield a katana in combat.
- The translator of Brave Soul ended up being included in the Developer's Room, as an obese blond, jogging in the lobby and mumbling about 'Oppai'.
- In the original .hack// series, the player behind the Ronin-inspired Sanjuro is actually a Japanese teacher from America with a love for Akira Kurosawa films who plays the Japanese version of The World to improve his Japanese.
- Sodom, from the Final Fight and Street Fighter games. He seems fascinated by samurai in particular. He wears a samurai helmet and mask with football pads and blue jeans. His win quotes largely consist of badly pronounced Japanese, he wrote the character for "Death" incorrectly on his shirt (though his calligraphy is very good), and his weapons are katanas and jittes (weapons used by police in the Edo period). His World Warrior Encyclopedia entry notes that he believes certain Japanese "unlucky words" inflict spiritual damage on an opponent, causing him to incorporate these words into the names of his moves.
- Fatal Fury's primary villain, crime boss Geese Howard, is a variation on this. While not depicted as interested in Anime or Manga, Geese's office on the top floor of his tower is covered in Japanese artifacts, and he himself wears a traditional akido fighter's uniform in most of his appearances.
- In Asura's Wrath Augus's reincarnation from The Stinger of Episode 22 is this, coming to Japan to collect Japanese swords, and trying to use broken Japanese to talk to some locals.
- In Barkley, Shut Up and Jam: Gaiden, the Save Points, which appear as floating gas pumps, require you to listen to the ramblings of a fictional and particularly obnoxious one of these before you can save. According to the developer, some of the rants are taken from actual forum arguments.
- Valentine, from Skullgirls, is, according to Alex Ahad, a weeaboo.
- Inverted in Shadow Warrior (2013). Lo Wang is Japanese and obsessed with American music, comic books, films and TV.
- Lionel Jones, a.k.a. Benjamin, from True Crime: New York City is this in spades with his zen garden, samurai armor, and katana.
Marcus Reed: [wielding an AK-47] I ain't gonna get into no samurai shit with you, man. I want answers.
Lionel Jones: [slices off the barrel of the AK-47] There's steel, and then there's my Shinto sword. Cuts through bone like butter.
- You can choose to be an Otaku in Cataclysm: Dark Days Ahead, which is set in New England. They start with a Cat Girl costume, a Tailor's Kit (the best sewing tool in the game), a cheeseburger, a Boston AnimeCon Magazine, and level 1 tailoring skill.
- Implied with Moira from Overwatch. Her third-person run animation has her holding her arms behind her a la Naruto, and her several of her sprays are references to scenes from a variety of anime.
- Despite not actually being very fond of Japan itself, Lord El-Melloi II from Fate/stay night has a well known preoccupation with Japanese video games, a quirk he adopted from his former Servant of the fourth Grail War, Alexander the Great. He was quite excited to learn that one of the students he was sponsoring was actually Japanese... until he discovered that she knew absolutely nothing about Akihabara or otaku culture. Rin Tohsaka was never that good with tech anyway, let alone otaku culture.
El-Melloi II: Fuck! You're the worst Japanese person in the world!
- According to the supplemental material for Hatoful Boyfriend, Sakuya Le Bel has a fascination with ninja and samurai. Since he usually identifies more with the French side of his family, it comes off as this.
- Go! Go! Nippon! is a visual novel made in Japan specifically for the foreign market, and its main character (unnamed and featureless, since it's a stand-in for the player himself) is an otaku coming from an unnamed, but definitely Western, country.
- Panzer IV of Panzermadels is German (and a Nazi), but she constantly peppers her dialogue with random Japanese phrases, and is the only one in the game to use honorifics. She also gets excited when she sees Japanese food in the supermarket.
Erwin: She gets... a bit odd when she's around Japanese stuff.
- In the localization of Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Dual Destinies, Simon Blackquill comes across as this, as the series is changed to take place in America, but he still styles himself like a Samurai, and frequently uses Japanese Honorifics in his speech.
- Piro from Megatokyo, who learned Japanese from anime and video games (and therefore, given what he watches, sounds like a teenage girl).
- Look at the quote for Keigo:
Gaijin talk like that so they don't get the shit kicked out of them for being disrespectful.
- Eri-chan in Strange Candy.
- Bob Floy in Flying Suit Reiko. It's mentioned in the author's notes that him being an otaku was specifically so it'd make sense for him to know Japanese.
- Despite providing the popular Alternate Name for this trope, "weeaboo" as shown in The Perry Bible Fellowship seems to be some kind of humiliating ritual hazing. The name comes from 4chan wordfiltering "wapanese"note to "weeaboo", and it spread from there.
- Muh Phoenix: Iron Man and Captain America are portrayed as two obsessive anime fanboys. Though they seem to be more into hentai rather than normal anime.
- Otaku Dad focuses on the titular Otaku Dad, a weeaboo from a rich family who builds a typical Japanese High School in the middle of the United States so his daughter can have the archetypical Japanese High School student experience.
- Rufioh Nitram from Homestuck once lived in the forest with a group of "Lost Weaboos" that he led. Note, that as a space alien, the anime they watched and manga they read was actually from "East Beforus", and the tribe actually counted East Beforan Damara Megido as a member and Rufioh's girlfriend. Poor Rufioh.
- Yume-Hime's Laurie, who creates the titular alter-ego after becoming obsessed with Magical Girl anime as a little girl.
- Rain is fond of manga, and Gavin is into anime.
- One common copy-and-paste thread on imageboards, which was later rediscovered by Tumblr, was written from the perspective of a fictional Occidental Otaku who had named himself "Ken-Sama". Much of the humor came from the fact that Ken-Sama absolutely butchered the Japanese language (introducing his post with the word "gomenasai") and held a poor understanding of genuine Japanese culture.
- One common label for people of this ilk that is employed on imageboards is weeaboo, a term derived from one of the strips from the Perry Bible Fellowship as a result of a word filter. The term has persisted since then.
- As Regular Car Reviews' Mr. Regular explains, anyone who would willingly try to acquire a Toyota AE86 Sprinter Trueno has to be one of these, especially importing a right-hand drive one from Japan rather than a US-model Corolla GT-S; it's not very powerful, most of them are rusty and beaten-on after 30 years, and it features technology no newer than 1987. But it was the car from Initial D, so to that limited group of fans, it's worth it.
- Dr. Krieger from Archer often shown sings of this, including having a collection of hentai envolving tentacles and a sentient holographic anime girl (who he created himself) as his girlfriend.
- Teen Titans has Beast Boy, a non-Japanese manga addict, and Control Freak, an offbeat villain who's more of a Trekkie, but still tried to convert himself into a TV signal so he could become a character in his favorite anime one time... and briefly succeeded, until Beast Boy defeated him with his superior knowledge of TV trivia. Incidentally, in the Teen Titans: Trouble in Tokyo movie, it was shown that Beast Boy can't read Japanese, or even know what Otaku means. (He still ends up charming some schoolgirls, though.)
- Birch Small, main character of the heavily Animesque Adobe Flash cartoon My Life Me. To a lesser extent, the rest of the cast.
- Harold from Total Drama.
- Ronaldo from Steven Universe, according to his Character Blog, Keep Beach City Weird. He frequently brings up weird anime he likes and owns a $300 replica of the sword from Beautiful Girlfriend Satan (about an Otaku who sells his soul for a girlfriend). In one episode he also removes his shirt to reveal a set of samurai-styled armor underneath.
- This goes back a lot further than you might expect. In the late 19th century, artists, particularly French and British artists, loved to emulate Japanese woodblock styles. In many ways, the Japonism of the 19th century helped inspire the modernism of the 20th century.
- In a similar vein, many 19th-century anthropologists were fascinated with the Ainu because they don't look quite like the Japanese. This was revived because of the discovery of haplogroup D and Kennewick mannote .
- Vincent van Gogh had a self portrait called "Me as a Japanese Man" where he tries to emulate the hairstyle of the samurai.
- Hilariously, Oscar Wilde himself wrote on this phenomenon just 30 years after Japan first opened its borders to the world, calling its fans obsessive without really knowing about this culture they love. As he put it, "The actual people who live in Japan are not unlike the general run of English people; that is to say, they are extremely commonplace, and have nothing curious or extraordinary about them."
- When hired by the emperor of Japan to design the Imperial Hotel, Frank Lloyd Wright felt somewhat bittersweet. He loved Japanese architecture but part of the requirement for the job was that it had to reflect western design as well. Ultimately, the emperor and several leading Japanese architects described his design as utterly brilliant.
- Rolf Anschütz, the man who opened the first Japanese restaurant in the German Democratic Republic. He even adopted a typical Japanese lifestyle in his private life. His restaurant became one of the most successful restaurants of East Germany.
- Patrick Lafcadio Hearn, an Irish author who moved to Japan and changed his name to Yakumo Koizumi. He is best known for his writings on Japanese legends and ghost stories.
- The English-language imageboard 4chan was originally designed for the posting of pictures and discussion of manga and anime, as the site was modelled on Japanese imageboards. Despite its later increase in popularity, much of its content still features otaku, anime and other Japanese cultural influences.
- Katagami — a style of printing using intricate, finely detailed paper stencils and used in clothing, graphic design, and architecture — was a major influence on Western art and design in the early 20th century and one of the primary inspirations for art deco.
- David Byrne's staging for Talking Heads' 1983 tour, as captured in Stop Making Sense, was inspired by Kabuki and Noh theater, including the famous big suit and the stagehands dressed in black visible to the audience.
- Frederik L. Schodt, anime and manga historian, personal friend of Osamu Tezuka, and translator of Japanese comics.
- Richard Sapper's design for the IBM (and later Lenovo) ThinkPad series of laptops was inspired by traditional black lacquered bento boxes.
- The "third wave" coffee movement in the West has drawn a lot of inspiration from Japanese kissaten culture, with the use of pour-over brewers, vacuum brewers and sourcing the highest-quality beans available.