Komatta Toki ni wa Hoshi ni Kike – even more Shounen-ai! I think I’m an addict…

And I’ve read yet another shounen-ai manga and this time, it hasn’t anything to do with anime, I’ve just read it for the heck of it. I like reading shounen-ai and yaoi, I really think I’m an addict… on the other hand: I’m a manga-addict anyway, so it doesn’t really makes any difference at all. Btw: spoiler ahead.

So, I’ve read the manga with the name I’ll never be able to remember without looking it up: Komatta Toki no wa Hoshi no Kike. Or also known as: Ask the Stras for Help! … yeah, whatever this title wants me to tell about the story is still an unsolved question for me. I’ve read 14 volumes now ( I think it’s around 41 chapers) and it’s a normal Highschool Story, I pretty much gave up on figuring out what the tile has to do with the manga. It’s finished by the way: 26 volumes with a total of 82 chapters, but only 14 volumes are scanlated right now and the scanlations are slow as fuck… damn. It’s an older manga, that was published between 1997 and 2005. A Shounen-Ai manga with a total of 26 volumes is actually really long, you don’t see this too often, but I can totally understand why it’s so long, because I really enjoyed reading it.

In my previous entry, I said I don’t like the typical Highschool Romance, but this one is exactly what I like, because the main point is, that the main couple does not “get together” too early. They don’t even fall in love this fast, it takes a long while and this is what makes it so enjoyable for me: they don’t jump from strangers to eternal love and the way their relationshiop slowly progresses to the point where everyone around them notices they have to be in love or something, but neither of them has actually confessed yet. I think Takara hasn’t even admitted to himself that he’s in love (volume 14). Actually right now we’re at the stage when he slowy begins to suffer due to his love, because he get’s jealous, he doesn’t like to be seperated from Hosaka for too long or he’s deeply hurt by harsh words Hosaka says without noticing. Well, Hosaka on the other hand seems to know that Takara is a very special person to him, if he knows that it’s love… I’m not sure, but it’s clear both of them want and need contact with each other – physical contact.

It begins with both of them pretty much hating each other, because their personalities clash against one another. They’re both hard to handle and really similar to each other in certain aspects, so they don’t get along at first. After being stuck in one room in the dorm, they’re forced to live with each other and quarrel pretty much every day. I’m convinced they’re both masochists and sadists at the same time, they need their fights. xD While they’re fighting all the time, they actually begin to get really close and at one point they somehow begin to share one bed and it goes on and on until they sleep together every night. Physical contact, that was used to tease the other at the beginning, becomes something normal to them not even worth mentioning anymore, let alone fighting over it. The way their relationship is now, it looks like a couple that has been going out for 2 year, but like I said earlier: neither of them has confessed anything. From their point of view, they’re still in a kind of “friends”-relationship, while they behave completely different. I’m actually pretty interested in what a relationship might look like, because considering Hosaka, I doubt he’d have a probem kissing Takara in public. This could turn into a few very funny moments, indeed.

By the way, I said both of their characters are similar to each other, so both characters seem to be pretty strong (while they both have their weak points) and so the seme/uke-pattern is played out pretty nice. What bugs me a bit is the fact the Takara cries from times to times. For a 16-year old male, it just looks weird to cry, no matter if he’s a huge boxer or a pussy. Well, whatever…

This manga is nothing near perfect or anything, but I just enjoy reading it a lot. The slice-of-life parts are pretty nice and while some drama that is added in there (kidnapping…) doesn’t really suit the manga in my opinion, it’s still pretty enjoyable to read. The art is a bit stiff here and there and since the beginning is pretty old, so is the style of art, but all in all it’s ok. What pisses me off a bit, is the fact that the kisses aren’t shown. You either see nothing or at least not the lips touching, that’s irritating me. As a sidenote: no kiss has happend out of the desire  to express love to the other character as of now. It was just to tease Takara, I’m still waiting for a “real” kiss out of love and with the only intention to express love.

While MyAnimeList.net has “Comedy, Drama, Shounen-Ai” listed as the genre, I think the amount of drama until now is pretty much normal. Don’t expect too much drama, really. Most of the time, I think it’s pretty lighthearted and altough I sure don’t laught about every joke, the comedy adds to the lighthearted atmosphere. I’d say it’s more of a BL slice-of-life manga with some comedy and drama in it. I was actually quite surprised Slice-of-Life is not listed.

So, I like this manga a lot and I totally recommend it for you, if you want to read shounen-ai without too much clichee, but a few cute moments here and there, as well as a relationship in it’s main focus that progresses slowly without both characters jumping at each other after 5 chapters.

Sekaiichi Hatsukoi – stalking the material before the anime aires

Sekaiichi Hatsukoi is the Yaoi-Anime I will watch next spring, so I decited to check it out a bit and since there’re only 3 scnalated chapters, it really is more like a short preview into the material. By the way, I’m totally convinced the other chapters will be scanlated pretty fast after the anime comes out and I will read them as well, because the impression this manga gave me was actually not that bad. In fact, it was better than I expected.

First things first, this story is about an editor who is forced to work in the Shoujomanga-department, altough he wanted to be an editor for literature. Wow, this is what I call professionals: place someone who applies to work with novels and has no idea about manga whatsoever in the manga-department.  It turns out is boss is an ass. It also turns out, his boss is his first love from 10 years ago he has sworn to never love again. Truth to be told, I don’t really like this incredible unlikely coincidences, like… your first love from 10 years ago turns out to be your boss. Or: the very same person turns out to be your neighbor (I’m not making this up, it’s all in the manga). Yeah, the world is small, huh? It’s so unconvincing and feels forced, that’s why I don’t like it.

Well… yeah, this is one thing I don’t like. The other is that the main character (the uke, btw) who swears to himself to not fall in love with his former lover again, actually rushes into having a crush on him again pretty fast. He may not want to, he may try to fight against it, but he’s falling in love with him much too fast. Ok, it’s pretty clear he will eventually fall in love with him again at some point, but come on! We’re in chapter 3. This is volume 2 and a manga I expect to be a little longer than just 2 volumes. (note: it is longer than just 2 volumes)

Next: the art – yes I’m still going on about the stuff I don’t like, so don’t expect me to praise it too much. While I wouldn’t really call it bad (at least it’s better than in Junjou Romantica, same Mangaka btw), it’s overall… ok. I can live with it, I’ve seen much worse. What’s really pissing me off, are the kisses. I’ve lost count on how many badly drawn kisses I’ve seen, but there are certain things artists (in this case: Mangaka) tend to do wrong. Sometimes, you don’t even see anything touching, or it looks weird with their lips or… whatever, for Sekaiichi Hatsukoi it’s the “one character looks like he’s eating the other”-phenomenon. even for a french kiss, you don’t need to look like you’re trying to bite a good amount of flesh out of his face. No om nom nom for you while kissing. And they do kiss… more often than I’d like to see. It’s actually not that good when the panel that’s supposed to move me and draw me into the manga, makes me look away. I’m not kidding, I really don’t want so see those kisses, I’m seriously skipping the panels.

Well, I hope the anime will do it better.

Now, finally: what’s left that I like? Altough our main character is the uke, at first he doesn’t seem too shy. He screams, he gets loud, he gets pissed, he wants to quite his job, because he doesn’t like it, but on the other hand he wants to achieve something without the help/name of his successful father, so he stays. And he doesn’t want his boss / former lover to just do like he pleases (e.g. kissing him). If only the huge blush would disappear… What’s pissing me off a bit is he’s seriously melting away as soon as he’s in contact with bis former lover. It’s like his character disappears and all what’s left is the shell of an average uke. I’m really worried he might turn into a boring uke as soon as there’s something like a relationship between those two. I want him to stay more active, to be stubborn and all this. His “better half” is a pretty outgoing seme after all… I’d really like these two to break out of the classic seme/uke-pattern a bit and it seems like our seme has some kind of weak spot, too. Please, please, please, I’d love that so much.

Let’s move on, what else do I like? Their age is not too far apart. I don’t like the 30+ year old successful businessman x 18-year old naive little guy – kind of stories. Probably because the seme/uke-pattern is going “to the extreme!” (KHR-reference here) in cases like this. I’m also bored by the Highshcool Romances, it’s always the same old stuff anyway (exception: “Seven Days” is really great, check it out), so it’s refreshing to see two adults who’re more or less… normal. No Mafia, no illegal work, no politicans, just people working in an editorial department. This is a real life situation for me, these are normal people I want to know something about. Probably because their life is normal, I’m more interested in what’s out of the ordinary in their lives.

Completely unrelated: I’m reading Bakuman and you often get to see how the famous “Weekly Shounen Jump” works, you get a pretty good view behind the scenes and it’s weird to see a different mangadepartment now, especially since they’re hardly alike at all. You have to admit Bakuman is a manga that has it’s main focus on drawing and publishing manga, while Sekaiichi Hatsukoi is more about the relationship between our main characters and less about the manga they’re editing/publishing. They could be working in a factory for chopsticks and it wouldn’t be different at all.

So, after 3 chapters (yes, all this text is only about the first 3 chapters. xD I swear, I don’t understand Japanese and I haven’t looked into the following chapters) I’ve come to the conclusion that this manga has it’s flaws, pretty annoying ones so to speak, but it’s not too bad. It actually managed to leave a pretty good impression despite all the stuff I’ve been mocking about and I think it’s an anime I can look foward to. The manga really raised my expectations for the upcoming anime and I’m glad I took a look into it, before the start of the springseason.

PS: sorry about the mistakes in the text (typing, grammar…), but it’s 2:45am here right now, I’m tired and I’ll crawl into my bed as soon as I’m finished with this very sentence.

Initial D – racing has never been this cool

Initial D is a manga- and anime-series that focuses on street racing. It tells the story of a genius driver who conquers Japans mountain roads in an old Toyota AE86. Sounds cool? Well, the main character is not cool at all, he doesn’t even like to drive at the beginning. He seems to be unmotivated whatever he does and is constantly sleepy. He’s a thickhead, doesn’t talk much and isn’t really interested in cars at all.

Despite all this, this series is still damn cool.

So far, I’ve read every single chapter and execpt of the OVAs, I’ve seen the complete animeadaptation. I’ve never seen or read any other manga or anime about car races, but I highly believe this is hard to beat. This is one of the few series, where the anime is better, because it’s just cooler to see the cars actually moving instead of “just” being drawn. … And I’m saying this altough the CGI is horrible in First Stage , but when the Anime reaches Stage 4 it’s pretty good. Don’t let it discourage you, just because the CGI dosn’t look nice, First Stage is from 1998, you can’t expect anything better than the quality of an old racing game. The races are thrilling and exiting with an unsual but fitting soundtrack, it get’s you into the mood to see more and more, it’s really well done.

This Manga/Anime has always been praised that it’s research is very well done and the technical facs are always accurate and right. There’s so much technical stuff going on and they talk about it a lot. It’s an important part of the manga and really makes you fell as if you’re with some car-maniacs. On the other hand: for a street racer who tunes his car himself (more or less), it’s important to know how a car works and all this, so I think it’s good this part is so important in the manga, too.

If your’re searching for a manga/ an anime with a deep story and complicated characters… you’re wrong here. It’s all about street racing on mountain roads, lots of technical talk and the main character who grows as a racer. Most supporting characters are opponents the protagnist has to battle against and they more or less are gone after the race most of the time, but this is something I’m really thankful for. It’s not as if I don’t care about a good supporting cast, but in a story like this, it’s really easy to build up an enormous amout of side characters and it’s really difficult to handle so many characters, so it’s better to focus on a small about of people to support the protagonists and give those few supporters some traits, some character development and this is much better than a huge supporting cast with no elaborated characters.

What I have to point out in a negative way is the art in the manga. Well, the cars are drawn pretty damn good, but the humans look ugly, there are anatomical mistakes and so on and so on. Despite this, I still like it. I can deal with bad art as long as there’s something else that makes me like the series and I really have to admit that I enjoy the races and like to see the protagonist grow. While it seems like the manga is nearing it’s end, I hope the anime will get a new Stage, the Fith Stage. Many fans are waiting for this, but I think they’re probably waiting until the Manga is over to cover up what has not been done yet.

Addicted to Curry chapter 76 – spoilerisch Curry with Love

Oh my GOSH! ❤ I love this chapter so much! Makito is finally going to accept his feelings and rushes to Yuis side. Way to go man, way to go. This made my day. Now we can finally move on, so awesome. ❤ I really like it that this manga finally takes a bigger step into the romance we’ve seen all the time. Yui has had her eyes on him for quite a while now, but the manga never really took a closer look at it, so it led to nowhere. Altough I think it’s a bit cheap to use Ryan for this (because he could’ve been a much better character, if there would’ve been more to him than just the love rival), he still caused all this mess. And hello, here we have a more complex topic to deal with. Finally.

Well it will end in a curry competition yet again, but hey, I’m pretty sure Yui will stay with Makito, even if he loses, but I’m positive he won’t lose. There’s Yui on the line, so show us all you’ve got Makito. Well, like I said, I don’t think she’ll be the  true “prize”, because if she’d just leave Makito because he lost this competition, she’s nothing more  than a fake bitch and since I don’t think she’s a fake bitch… she’ll most likely stay with him, especially when she sees just how much she means to him. Took him long enough to notice, but I still love it, because I was waiting for this moment for such a long time. I can’t wait to see what happens next.

Actually, there’s something I have to complain about. They made it look, as if the only reason Makito was refusing to give in, is his inexperience in love. This… well, is weird, because a few chapters earlier Makito was thinking about Yui being a Highschool girl and so… not someone he should love. Instead of using this reasoning, they decited to go with the inexperience. D: Man, this is  lame. :/ If they’d gone with the guilty conscience, they could’ve taken Makito to a higher level, by turning him into the more reasonable adult than Ryan, who came and instantly fell in love with Yui, without even thinking about her age. Even with his, there’s no reason why he shouldn’t have this realization-moment when he’s deciting to give into his feelings. Skip Beat did this to Ren, too. Why not Makito? It’s so easy, all he had to do, was come to the realization, that love knows no limitations and no bounds, so it’s ok to love her, as long as she loves him too and both of them are happy together. She’s not a gradeschooler, that would’ve been much worse. Their age isn’t that much different, so it’s still all right. Truth to be told, I think Ryan seems like he’s much older than Makito and much too old for Yui to be considered a lover.

Kimi ni Todoke 2 (Episode 9) Ryu is my hero.

Hey, hey. 😀

I’ve just watched Kimi ni Todoke Season 2 episode 9  and besides the fact that something finally happend, Ryu made my day. When Joe asked him about Kazehaya he didn’t want to lie, so he just answerd with a cheeky grin and laughed every time Joe asked. xD Seriously, that made me laught so hard, I just love his character. And he’s got the nerve to sleep while all the others were working hard to make it in time for the parade. You win, Ryu. You win.

About Kazehaya and Sawako…  let’s just say, I’m always surprised how insanly thickheaded Sawako is. Well, yeah, at least Kazehaya finally knows that Sawako is in love with him, but hugging her tightly wasn’t enought to make her understand he loves her, too? No wonder she didn’t understand when he said it a few episodes ago… Seriously, for this girl you need to shout it into her ears and write it down. Add: “I like you and I mean L-O-V-E, like lovers, not friends.” She won’t get it otherwise…

After all he did, she still thinks he meant he’s not in love with her when he said his “like” is different from hers, but he said this at a point where he didn’t know she’s in love with him. Those two have serious problems – and a talent to create these problem themselves, altough there’s no need. Truth to be told: The walking stupidity called Joe is not their fault, this guy’s just dumb as bread. Kazehaya was wa~y too nice to him for ruining the biggest chance he ever had.

this “Bambino” is a manga

Bambino translates to “baby” or “child” and is the title of a manga I’m reading. It’s already finished in Japan, but it’s not completely scanlated yet. I think it even has a sequel…

So what’s this manga about? Italian cooking! 😀 Makes no sense? It actually does, because our protagonist is a young man who likes to cook and got himself into an italian restaurant in Roppongi. On his first day there, he’s been taught he’s not as great as he thinks he is and everyone starts calling him “Bambi” or “Bambino” because of his lack of experience and skill. Well, he can cook, but still has a lot to learn an everything. And this leads to a slice-of life drama. Hello, seinenmanga.

Well, I wouldn’t  really call this manga a truly great manga. I think it’s more… the usual stuff, the hard-working type of main character who has to go through all kinds of hardships in his daily life. Of course, this can turn into a true masterpiece, just like everything can, but in this case it doesn’t. It’s quite nice to follow, it’s not bad, but I don’t really feel anything “new”. Altough I’ve never read a manga about italian food before, it fails to catch me. I’ve read a ton of sportmanga and I’ve seen formula XY so often, but there are still manga that manage to get me, altought they don’t reinvent the wheel. I don’t really know why Bambino can’t excite me, it’s topic is so unual it should be easy. :/

Again: I’m not saying it’s a bad manga, because like I said before: I think it’s ok, the usual stuff you read when you have nothing to do and this makes me … kind of sad, because I think this manga could be much more interesting, so to speak. “Addicted to Curry” isn’t that great either, but it’s still a bit more interesting in my opinion: no matter if there’s a curry-challenge or if they’re trying to sell curry on the street, because the restaurant has to be repaired.

Well, so much about this. A short review (more like: my opinion about this manga in a few sentences) , I’m too tired to write more now… I can recommend this manga, if you have nothing else to do and just want to read something, probably try something new out, but not if you’re searching for an awesome manga. It’s the kind of “ok” manga, but not the masterpiece.

Kaichou wa Maid-sama! (Chapter 58) So moe!

I haven’t had much time to write an entry, because… well yeah, I’ve been playing Pokékom White since it came out here in Europe and from all the Pokémon games I’ve played so far, I think this is one of the best, but let’s talk about manga here. 😀 About our beloved student president who happens to work as a maid in a maid-café.

Actually, there’s not much to say about chapter 58, it pretty much turned out exactly the day I predicted. It’s pretty funny to see Misaki is in a constant dere-mode as soon as Usui and her are alone. It made me laught so hard when Usui was playing with her saying he wants to brag with the scarf and she went nuts. xD

Good to see she still has her tsun-mode. My reaction to her scolding in the morning of the new semester was pretty much the same the idiotic trio had. xD I just love her Tsundere character. ❤ Her Tsun-mode is hilarious and her dere-mode is super moe. I loved it when she was pretty much buried in moe-flowers. xD Made my day.

Although it was predictable what’s going to happen in this chapter, I still enjoyed it a lot, because I like Misaki and Usui so much.