It's old news, but S&M Sniper (magazine) succumbed to Japan's financial meltdown and the global trend towards the on-line in October, 2008.
This magazine, which towered as a vital voice of a rich subculture for thirty years, showcased amazing works of art and literature.
Photographer/writer Murata Kenichi was one Sniper's mainstays, and I present here excerpts from his '97 story, 'The Rebel of a Man-made Girl'.
For obvious reasons (spot the doll!), it's one of my favorites.
ww*.smsniper.ne* (replace *'s), this is no compensation for the loss of the printed page.
A browse of the on-line edition demonstrates what a feeble substitute it is for leafing through over a hundred glorious pages of enticing and provocative content.
I would also speculate that the magazine provided a greater income for the artists who contributed to it than the web does. Punters have demonstrated a worrying reluctance to pay for on-line content, and I doubt the late magazine's website defies this trend. As a result, contributions would surely not be as diverse.
Interestingly, when Sniper was launched thirty years ago by the courageous efforts of Yosuke Onishi (editor) Araki Nobuyoshi, and Kyoko Okazaki, among others, so was the 'Alpha Inn', Japan's first S&M hotel.
There was nothing else like S&M Sniper.
And there never will be.
Not in its classical form.