~Got your fill of the testosterone mix in Sassy’s great manga posts? Hope you did because Hoshi is BACK (coincidentally with more romance)! Unfortunately I was forced to go on a bit of a break from Metanorn due to the typical forces that plague an awkward teenager about to graduate high school who also has a hysterical, tyrant for a mother, but I won’t bore you with the horrid details. All I can say is that I found myself browsing through the deep crevices of my manga collection since I wasn’t allowed to read manga online. I ended up stumbling upon an old favorite of mine, which I do name in this post, and instantly, I found my new manga post theme.
For me, there’s nothing more fun, or funnier, than reading a manga about otakus when I am one. There’s always that moment where I’m laughing hysterically, thinking, I do that too! and, almost too skillfully, find those references to real manga and anime. With my love for this kind of slice-of-life manga, I’m actually a bit scared on how late this theme came out. So with that, let me introduce you to two groups of otakus, and a guy who has to go through the hard task of having a fujoshi for a girlfriend.
Author: Pentabu/ Artist: Shinba Rize
Genre(s): Comedy, Romance, Shoujo, Slice of Life
Summary: This blog is a record of battle as dictated by a man with a fujoshi girlfriend. Okay, that was a lie. I’m not fighting at all. The war is purely one-sided. Each day I am dragged further and further into the world of otaku. I cannot be held responsible for any damages incurred by reading this blog and falling into the same predicament. There is much otaku talk contained within, so please follow your directions carefully, and do not exceed your recommended dosage.
Thoughts: When my cousin, a hardcore fujoshi gal herself, told me about this, I KNEW this would be as funny as hell xD We’re always joking around with our guy friends about yaoi and laugh hysterically when they have no idea that they just agreed to be the uke, so the fact there was a whole MANGA SERIES about a guy having to deal with a fujoshi was like laughter heaven to us. The poor guy is just so clueless about the fandom and how he reacts to some of it is just so funny! I was cracking up the most when the girlfriend started talking about a pairing in one manga they both like and he didn’t get her until after a while when he realized she meant two of the male characters XD He was like, “OHHHHH…”. Honestly, I feel sorry for the poor guy sometimes…I can’t imagine how that must feel |’D
Of course, this is romance, and you’re going to get a good dosage of it here. It’s nice though; it gives some hope that YES even a yaoi fangirl with her weird fetishes can snag a pretty cute, and sweet boyfriend in time. I’d like to say this scenario is sort of like the fangirl dream, but I know I can’t speak for all fangirls! Art-wise, it’s quite nice; very clean, smooth, typical shoujo art, but I like it. I have yet to read the blog/novel this was based on since I haven’t gotten my hands on it, but I won’t be surprised if it’s extremely similar. Overall, I’d definitely recommend this for all you fujoshi out there for both the comedy and romance, heh~.
Genshiken – The Society for the Study of Modern Visual Culture
Author: Kio Shimoku
Genre(s): Comedy, Drama, Romance, School Life, Seinen, Slice of Life
Summary: College freshman and ACG lover Kanji Sasahara settled down his extracurricular activity in Genshiken (The Society for the Study of Modern Visual Culture) in order to become a true and thorough otaku. Meanwhile, Saki Kasukabe, the girlfriend of another freshman Genshiken member (also a bishounen) Makoto Kohsaka, was dragged into Genshiken’s otaku-ish activities reluctantly, yet her resentful attitude towards otakus is changing without her notice.
Thoughts: This manga, for me, is like the ultimate guidebook. I started collecting this series when I was about 14, still a bit innocent and not even aware that doujinishi and porn games existed (surprisingly). After reading it, I was lead onto the path of anime otaku-ism; no joke. The characters, the stories, the wacky antics of the club, going to Comic-fest, it was all so interesting, and not to mention HYSTERICAL at some points. I loved that you got very unique characters representing the different types of otakus, like gamers, artists, and cosplayers. Then you add in that person who is a non-otaku into this mix of crazy characters and it’s just laughs almost all the way. You do get that slice-of-life and tiny bit of romance as well so the story can actually move, but there are many, many laughs.
Out of all the characters, Madarame is my favorite. Just the way he acts is so funny at times, and now that I’m looking over this series again, I think I may even have developed my enthusiasm and buying techniques for manga from what he would do/say in the manga! x’D As for characters I can relate to, I’d say at first Kanji, then Madarame. In the beginning of my love for anime, I was afraid what people would say, label as the weird kid into the Japanese comics. Yet when I read this, it broke me out of my shell, just as Kanji started breaking out of his. I then merged into Madarame; weird, spends too much money on manga (though he buys a lot of doujin), and many other things. It’s why I LOVE this manga to pieces, and feel that EVERY anime/video game otaku should read this, especially the ones who are barely starting out in the fandom. I’ve learned so many things from here (which can be a good and bad thing HEH), and it turned me into who I am today, in a way. I’m sorry if this segment got a little personal, but you have to realize how great it is to actually make me practically worship it. Currently a sequel of Genshiken is running in Japan with a lot more references to modern anime and a few new characters (one including a cross-dressing boy named HATO-KUN LULZ). If you haven’t read Genshiken yet, read it, read it, READDDD IIIIITTTT! It’s great; trust me (TRUST ME TRUST ME TRUST ME YEAH! Overused joke, sorry…)~.
Author: Higurashima Akiko
Genre(s): Comedy, Gender Bender, Josei, Romance, Slice of Life
Summary: Kurashita Tsukimi is an 18 year old ‘kurage otaku’ (jelly fish fanatic). She lives in Tokyo in an all-woman apartment full of various types of otaku. They fear and despise beautiful, fashionable people while existing happily in their no-man, no make-up world. That all changes when a ‘Stylish’ saves the life of a jelly fish and intrudes upon Tsukimi’s isolated existence. Things are made even more complicated when it turns out that the beautiful ‘Stylish’ is a man in drag.
Thoughts: How can I NOT have Kuragehime when mentioning manga about otakus?! Usually I wouldn’t put mangas that have been turned into animes in one of my posts, but I mean, IT’S KURAGEHIME! All right, the real reason I broke my rule and decided to put this glorious manga here was because not only are these lovable, crazy characters otakus, but even the MANGAKA! No lie; check out her hysterical bonus comic about her early life at the ends of volumes 1 and 2 (which are the only full volumes scanned at the moment). She talks about her own fascination for jellyfish, how she constantly drew them, then fell for a athlete on tv, and repeated the cycle, except doing crazy stuff to try and meet him and other typical fangirl antics. I was sitting there thinking, THIS IS ME, and just couldn’t stop laughing at how true it was about fangirls. I’ve been in love and in awe with Higurashima since then, seriously.
Anyways, back to the actual manga, it’s just as brilliant as the anime, which means the anime followed the manga pretty well. Of course, if you’ve seen the anime, the manga isn’t going to be any surprise to you yet since the scans haven’t even caught up to the anime yet. Diligent Kuragehime fan that I am though, I read it anyways and it’s just as fun to go back and recall all your favorite moments (KURAKIMIIIII). Art-wise, it actually bothered me a bit at first. It was very odd to me, such as the face shapes, but after a while, the story just gets too good and hilarious to let it bother me anymore. Plus IT’S KURAGEHIME! I can’t NOT read the manga because of a little ick I have with the art! It’s almost blasphemy! (*tones down fangirl mode*) A brillant manga followed by a brillant anime. If you haven’t seen it, at least read it before I find you and scream at you to read/watch it. Hysterical, otaku women with a cross-dressing male; what more can you ask for?~
Author: Takashima Hiromi
Genre(s): Comedy, Lolicon, Romance, Seinen
Summary: Twenty-nine-year old Kurose Kazumi is a programmer in an eroge company and has played plenty of galges when he was younger, but he’s completely uninterested in young girls. A chance encounter changes that when he meets a middle schooler who suddenly says she can’t date him, but he realizes how cute she is and wants to keep her with him.
Thoughts: At first I wasn’t going to mention this manga because it really didn’t fit in with the theme, but after reading it a bit more, and then finding out this manga about an innocent lolicon was made by a WOMAN, I knew I just had to. Usually I don’t read things about loli-cons or shouta-cons because it’s just plain creepy for me, but this turned out to be sooooo cute I couldn’t help myself! First of all the art style is pretty adorable, especially when it comes to the girls (Wow, that did NOT sound perverted at all). I could tell from the cutsie art that it had to be a woman who drew this (though some guys do draw pretty cutsie themselves, i.e creator of K-ON! and creator of Azumanga Daioh). Second, the story itself is not dirty at all, which I was happy about. It’s decently clean, innocent, and SO CUTE; definitely not creepy at all, hahaha.
I really liked the guy, Kurose. He acts so cute and innocent when it comes to this middle schooler, and just all the things he does for her is so…KYAA!<3 8D Plus I love his afro, HA. It’s rare you see characters with afros (other than Banba). The only thing I worry with this story is how in the WORLD is this going to end (Nope I haven’t finished it yet!). I mean, it’s not like he can go out with her, and with me not being experienced with this kind of story, I have absolutely no prediction for the ending, heh. All in all, Miman Renai is a great manga for a little twist on some cute, innocent romance~.
~I went a little overboard on the romance ONCE AGAIN, but hey, it’s Valentine’s Day! Why not? I hope you check out these titles, and I’ll see ya all next time! Hoshi is OUT, for now~.