Japan Erotic Dictionary: Nyan-nyan shashin leaked sex scandal photos

In September last year we wrote about the attempted comeback of the model Karina, after her notorious leaked sex photo scandal.

The word that was used a lot to describe this was nyan-nyan. It has come to mean both having sex, and more specifically, sex photos (nyan-nyan shashin).

Of course, scandals of leaked nude photos is a problem even more of the digital age and is perhaps even more notorious in America (Jennifer Lawrence et al).

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However, in Japan is all goes back to the 1983 and a magazine called Focus.

Nyan-nyan starts with Tomoko Takabe, an actress and tarento TV celebrity in the 1980s. She was seen as very young and innocent as idols generally are. But she did have a secret partner and he took photos of her “after nyan-nyan”, naked on a futon and smoking.

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This was the phrase (“after nyan-nyan”) used for a headline in Focus and it has stuck. Her fans were shocked by the pictures — the rawness of them and this image of Takabe tore away her public persona. She was only 15 years old at the time and the photo was taken by her boyfriend, an 18-year-old whom she had met when he was an extra on a TV show.

The photo scandal destroyed her career. Her TV appearances were cancelled and her advertising deals pulled. She later went on to have a career in mental health. Her boyfriend who leaked the photos subsequently killed himself.

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Sales for Focus exploded, despite the photos being of Takabe when she was legally underage. During this period the Japanese tabloid media was changing too. The later 1980s and then into the 1990s saw a shift towards “trashier” content about tabloids and regular publication of shots taken up idol’s skirts.

Nyan-nyan as a term stayed around and was resurrected when Karina’s images were taken. Though as a word it implies a cat, the way Focus used it in its headline to imply sex gave it a whole new meaning for following generations.

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It became associated with amateur leaked sex photos and even appeared as the name of pornographic magazines like Nyan 2 Club and Nyan 2 Club Z, which focuses on “amateur” sex photos.

Along with the recent Karina scandal, past nyan-nyan shashin incidents involved celebrities such as Aya Hirano, Kou Shibasaki, Miku Natsume and Atsuko Maeda, as well as Megumi Okina and disgraced actor Manabu Oshio.

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Male idols have also been implicated in the scandals. Several photos have been leaked showing the members of Arashi engaged in some fun with female celebrities. Above you can see Masaki Aiba and his then-lady, Yuri Yamano.

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