Interviews with Monster Girls- Sakie the succubus
Interviews with Monster Girls is at its core a rather mundane slice of life show and really isn’t anything all that special. What makes the show so interesting is that it tries to explain some of the biology behind the monster girls and their abilities. It also takes the time to delve into some of the psychological and social issues some of the characters face as a result of their monster girl nature. The astute watcher of anime could make the case that the monster girls are a substitute for individuals with special needs, which I happen to agree with. But you are here to discover the science behind the monster girls. This will be a series of posts beginning with our resident succubus, Sakie.
Sakie is the school’s new math teacher and the only adult monster girl who we are introduced to. She also happens to be a succubus, which according to mythology is a highly attractive demon who may or may not kill people through adult activity. In this case Sakie is not a demon, but she does emit an aphrodisiac that has a number of effects on males. The fact that she is extremely attractive with a large amount of “talent” is left open for debate on whether it is a result of being a succubus or tipping the puberty fairy.
Sakie’s aphrodisiac effect is most likely due to a pheromone. Phermomones are chemical messengers that a number of living organisms secrete in order to communicate with one another. The first pheromone was discovered in 1959 in female silk moths, and it was used in mating/ sex. Pheromones can be involved in a wide variety of behaviors including, marking territory, direction (scent trails), alarm, aggregation (clustering), mating, and sex. While there are a wide range of organisms using a wide range of pheromones, the most important ones in this case are the mating and sex pheromones. Thus far the only vertebrate to use mating/sex pheromones are mice. The mice use the pheromones not to attract mates, but to drive closely related mates away to reduce the possibility of inbreeding. This is beneficial as highly inbred organisms tend to have a lower chance of survival due to a higher likelihood of acquiring harmful traits. A human example would be why certain isolated populations tend to have a much higher rate of a rare genetic disease, for example Tay Sachs in certain Jewish populations.
There have been a number of studies over the years on whether or not humans have pheromones; some have shown that humans have sex pheromones and others were less conclusive. Studying human pheromones is rather complex for a variety of reasons including the following. First, the subjects being studied need to be clean to eliminate the effect of other chemicals, but that cleanliness can remove the pheromones the scientists are trying to study. Second, if the pheromones exist, the effect is not very strong and can be overridden by other sensory signals such as hearing and sight.
A study in 1971 led by Martha McClintock at Chicago University showed that menstrual synchrony occurred, which is when women living in close proximity will begin to have their menstrual cycles at the same time. While it was reproduced several times since then, larger studies in 2013 proved that menstrual synchrony does not occur. There were also issues with the methods as to how the women would synchronize periods or why they would.
Another study proposed that androstenol, and androstenone could potentially be human sex pheromones. However, the results have been questionable at best; additionally, there were problems with how the experiments have been carried out. The final study that I will mention is one that looked into a structure known as the vomeronasal organ, which is an auxillary sensory receptor. Think of it like a backup or secondary nose, which responds to pheromones and is also found in other animals. Knowing, this it is logical to think that it would be the same in humans.
However, there are some problems with this; while 92% of humans have at least one vomeronasal organ, there are no olfactory neurons located in it (the nerves that detect scents), and the genes that would be involved with the organ no longer function in humans. So at the end of the day, all current science can say about pheromones is maybe.
Sakie’s main power as a succubus is an aphrodisiac effect that is most likely carried out by some kind of pheromone, as this is the only biological system that could cause this effect scientifically. Sakie cannot control this effect, so her body is constantly releasing the pheromone. As to the pheromone itself, it is probably a highly volatile ester, carboxylic acid, or both. The reasoning for this is that they can be produced biologically, they spread through the air easily, and can be detected by the human nose.
The pheromone would be produced in a specialized exocrine gland in the skin, like a modified sebaceous gland. (Preputial glands produce pheromones in other mammals)
While Sakie cannot stop releasing the hormone, she can reduce it somewhat by wearing clothing. The clothing would make it more difficult for the pheromone to spread as it would need to pass through the clothing, so a non-breathable material is going to be the best type of material for clothing for Sakie.
A sauna suit is meant to trap water from sweat and enhance weight loss, but in Sakie’s case it would trap the pheromone, limiting her effect, as only her hands and head would be releasing the pheromone. Clearly not the most comfortable thing in the world, but the things people do to be able to interact with society.
Sakie also has the ability to cause very interesting thoughts and dreams in others when she falls asleep. Pheromones can also explain this effect as well. There are multiple types of pheromones, and some animals will release several different types of pheromones. It stands to reason that Sakie can secrete a second pheromone that stimulates certain parts of the brain that cause those interesting adult thoughts. As to why this effect exists, it would be defensive in nature. If any male came across a sleeping succubus, he would potentially become distracted and unable to carry out whatever it was he was planning. This would mean that there would be a bit more of a delay between Sakie falling asleep and others having adult thoughts, and between her waking up and the ending of those adult thoughts.
The final thing to note about Sakie’s abilities is that her aphrodisiac effect is that it is much stronger when she is touching people. This can be due to being closer to Sakie as the individual is exposed to more pheromones as they are closer to the source. The second reason could be a third pheromone, one that is only transferred through skin contact. The pheromone in this case would be an oil which is rapidly absorbed through the other person’s skin. Once the oil passes through the skin and enters the blood stream, it would rapidly enter the brain and cause the desired effect. The benefit of having this skill for mating is blatantly obvious, but it would also be useful as a defensive mechanism as a young Sakie demonstrates during the show. So, there you have it, the biology behind Sakie’s succubus abilities. Oh, and in case you’re wondering, Sakie is the best girl in my humble opinion.
He is a mysterious blond boy employed by the police who is immune to Sakie’s succubus abilities. There are two explanations for this, one being that Kurtz is a monster boy, specifically an incubus. An incubus is a male succubus and is immune to a succubus’s aphrodisiac abilities. Two, Kurtz lacks a sexual attraction to women. If we go with reason number 1, that Kurtz is an incubus, how would he be immune to the aphrodisiac effect?
Sakie’s aphrodisiac effect is powered by airborne pheromones which would be detected by the olfactory receptors in Kurtz’s nose. Kurtz most likely has some form of anosmia, or a lack of a sense of smell. There are a number of reasons that this could happen, and while there is no genetic defect that causes it, Kurtz’s would be genetic and part of his monster boy abilities. It is also possible that his anosmia is limited to Sakie’s pheromones. Now, if you remember, earlier I proposed that Sakie also has a pheromone spread by skin to skin contact, and Kurtz would need a defense against this. There are two ways that this could happen: one, his skin’s permeability to oils is modified in some way, preventing the pheromone from passing through his skin; or two, his body secretes a chemical that breaks the pheromone down when the two come into contact. Either way Kurtz is not effected by Sakie’s pheromones.