Weirdest Relationships Ever: Japanese Man Marries Hologram
"2D characters can't cheat, age or die..."
With an increasingly open world, gender and relationships are becoming increasingly fluid — which is fine and a sign of changing times. But, when it comes to the weirdest relationships out there, the one we’re about to tell you about takes the cake.
Weirdest Relationships: Man marries hologram
35-year-old Akihiko Kondo held his wedding in Tokyo on November 2018. However, sadly, none of his family members attended – including his mum.
An unsurprising decision, considering her only child tied the knot with a hologram.
“For mother, it wasn’t something to celebrate,” commented Akihiko in a gentle voice.
His “bride” was actually a virtual reality singer called Hatsune Miku, a 16-year-old with large eyes and long blue hair. Still, Akihiko covered the cost – around two million yen (US$17,600) – to hold an official marriage.
There were about 40 guests who witnessed him marry Miku, who at the time was a plush doll as big as a cat.
Akihiko claims that he’s “never cheated on her” and “always loved Miku-san”. He also said he was “thinking about her every day” one week after their marriage.
He has been residing with the moving, speaking Miku hologram (which floats inside a machine costing US$2,800) since March..
Hologram wife “no different” to real wife
For Akihiko, life is just the same as any married man. His holographic wife awakens him every morning and sends him off for work in school, where he is an administrator.
At night, once he informs her via mobile phone that he’s returning home, Miku switches on the lights. After a few hours, she advises him when it’s bedtime.
Akihiko falls asleep beside her cat-sized plushie from the wedding. The doll dons a wedding ring which fits snugly on her left wrist.
Although his marriage has no legal value, he doesn’t mind. He even brought the Miku doll to a jewellery shop to find a ring that fits her.
Not the only case of hologram marriage
Gatebox, the company that manufactures the hologram machine prerojecting Miku, has given Akihiko a “marriage certificate”. The document confirms a human has married a virtual character “beyond dimensions”.
Apparently, other people have also married virtual characters, too. Gatebox has supplied over 3,700 certificates confirming “cross-dimension” marriages. Strangers have even sent him encouraging messages for his decision.
“There must be some people who can’t come forward and say they want to hold a wedding. I want to give them a supportive push,” said Akihiko.
Traumatised by female bullies
Akihiko chose Miku since he had challenges interacting with real women as a teen obsessed with anime.
Looking back, he said that “Girls would say ‘Drop dead, creepy otaku!'”. ‘Otaku’ is a Japanese word for geeks that has a negative undertone.
Growing up, Akihiko mentions that a woman from a prior workplace bullied him so badly that he had a nervous breakdown. Since then, he was sure to never marry.
Japan’s shrinking population has made it normal for men to stay single. In 1980, about one in 50 men were still single by 50, but that figure has turned to one in four now.
Still, Akihiko eventually noticed that he had fallen for Miku for over ten years, and made the decision to wed her.
Part of a “Sexual Minority”
According to Akihiko, he truly loves Miku and considers her “the one who saved me”. He adds that while he’s willing to befriend real women, he isn’t intending to pursue a romantic relationships with one, regardless of what his mum says.
He also says that “2D characters can’t cheat, age or die”, something he’s not searching for in “3D women” because “it’s impossible.”
Japan is well known as a country preoccupied with anime, but Akihiko’s marriage still astonished many.
Akihiko says that he identifies himself as part of a “sexual minority” who are unable to date real women.
“It’s simply not right, it’s as if you were trying to talk a gay man into dating a woman, or a lesbian into a relationship with a man,” he explained.
Adding to his argument, he says that society has always been striving for greater diversity and that the norm of happiness – where men and women wed and have kids – “”won’t necessarily make you happy”.
“I believe we must consider all kinds of love and all kinds of happiness,” he concludes.
References: Channel News Asia