Male turkeys are not known for their ability to choose the best sexual partners. In fact, studies have shown they kind of suck.
In the 1960s, researchers from the Pennsylvania State University discovered they could easily trick male turkeys into mating with the stuffed dummy of a female turkey. The unsuspecting birds would perform their courtship displays and then try to copulate with the phony female. More surprisingly, and somewhat pathetically, the males performed the same behavior even as the researchers disassembled the dummy. It got to the point where if the researchers held up a fake female head on a stick, the males would still try to hump the spot of air where the nonexistent female's backside should have been.
Male turkeys getting turned on by fake females sounds silly, but what about men getting turned on by fake women - say, female videogame characters? Through pornographic fan art, nude mods and a growing adult gaming industry, videogame characters have now become sexual beings. Men are indeed attracted to fake women, so does that mean we're more like our turkey brethren than expected?
The picture shows a naked, brown-haired girl with purple goggles raised up onto her head. She's down on all fours on top of a judge's desk. At her rear, another nude woman is about to penetrate her with a light blue dildo. The text beneath the JPEG identifies the pair as Ema and Lana Skye, sisters who appear in the Phoenix Wright series of games.
That image comes from the website of Sephyroth, a 21-year-old California artist who draws hentai, a style of pornographic art that draws inspiration from anime and manga. Sephyroth, who declined to provide his real name, draws his own characters and, like many hentai artists, also frequently sketches characters from comics, cartoons and videogames.
"The biggest misconception about me is that just because I draw [hentai], people think I'm some sort of crazy pervert," Sephyroth says in an email interview. "For me, hentai is the same as any other kind of art. I don't care for whatever acts are being portrayed in the images as much as how pleasing the image looks, and admiring the kinds of techniques the artists used to make the image."
Inspired by artists he met online when he was 13, Sephyroth now attends art school in San Francisco and hopes to create concept art for games and movies in the future.
Like many of the artists who frequent hentai forums and image sharing sites, Sephyroth often takes requests from fans who desire to see a particular character performing explicit acts. Pictures on his request page include one of Kairi and Tifa from Kingdom Hearts playing strip poker, Ashley Graham of Resident Evil 4 chained to a wall with much of her clothing torn, and Amy of Soul Calibur III masturbating.