The Silver Age of Lolicon doujin effectively took off at the beginning of the 2000’s. Several series took off just at the beginning of the decade. Comic Aun , Momohime, and Masyo were three of the series to emerge and feature small sections of lolicon. Hinnyuu and Hinakan featured even more focus. Yanagawa Rio was one of the legends to appear on the first edition of the series and to make a continued presence throughout the Silver Age of Lolicon. It was the gradual explosion of key doujin anthologies that were “lolicon only” as well as top lolicon artists that lead to it’s ever expanding success.
Comic LO was the breaking point featuring prepubescent, early pubescent and highly juvenile-looking girls. The magazine has been published by Akane Shinsha since issue one on October 2002. It was published irregularly until May 2004, when it became a monthly magazine. The “LO” stands for “lolita only”. The cover illustrations have been routinely made by Takamichi over the years. Some of the artists for the first issue included EB110SS, Hidiri Rei, Katagiri Hinoka, Minasuki Popuri, Okina, and Wanyanaguda. They would dominate the next decade and LO would become the best known Anthology series for lolicon since.
Many of the artists from that series have remained loyal to LO over the years and bringing forth an artistic quality that was showing new depths of artwork as well as more lewdness. Another series that went even more into this newfound grey area was Enjeru that featured toddlercon, an even younger age range then previously before. It was also called the Angel series and it debuted in 2003 under the Tenma publisher and had a total of 10 issues to emerge before it stopped. In many ways it broke open the gates of what was possible and was still acceptable all at once. Many of the people who emerged from this series became legends of the scene, including Hayashibara Hikari, Teruki Kuma, Sekiya Asami, Mizu, Medaka Kenichi, and Nishi Iori.
Nishio Iori shortly after became the long running cover artist for Comic Masyo and it showed a more common occurrence where loli art might be sprinkled in with the growing list of other hentai multi artist anthologies. Eventually an artist’s work would often be collected into large edition manga or tankoubon which compiled all the single edition stories into a ~200 page collection of their loli centered output. More and more artists began to release their own shorter doujin too. Regardless, there was an ever growing list of lolicon specific or general themed anthologies by 2005. Comic Mate, Minimon, Momopan, and Rin all began a successful run in the mid 90’s.
There was some moral panic against lolicon due to some violent real life incidents in Japan (Kaoru Kobayashi and Tsutomu Miyazaki), but these were somewhat seen as isolated events by disturbed individuals. They did not result in any of the proposed legislation or changes against the growing industry. Lolicon as a sex industry has never been “accepted” in Japan but is seen an underground part of a larger Moe and Kawaii culture that is “normal”. Hentai was marketed to men and boys however.
By the 2010’s there was a larger movement in Japan to change how it’s pornography was sold to minors. It included a proposed ban of sexualised depictions of “nonexistent youths” under the age of 18. While that was a political and legal discussion it did not pass and lead mostly to the possession of child pornography depicting real children finally becoming illegal in Japan in June 2014. It also was a move away from the physical sale of lolicon and hentai to minors but allowing digital sales to continue. Hentai and lolicon has continued to thrive and make Japan a world wide successful sex industry, at the same time that it’s in a grey zone legally in many other western countries. Western Lolicon has now become it’s own subculture outside of Japan. Westerners who adore Japanese lolicon have created English forums, translations, and digital collection through a variety of sites, blogs, and databases ensuring it’s growth and success into the modern age on a global level. This site is a dedication and resource of that amazing art culture.
Some more history and discussion below from YouTube. I haven’t viewed them all quite yet.