This blog is a storage space for various thoughts, observations and musings centering on shōjo manga (少女漫画, Japanese comics for girls), josei-oriented manga (Japanese comics for women) and manga created by women (in the widest sense). Topics from other fields of relevance, such as music, art, literature and film may be discussed here as well.

For the most part, Japanese names appear in their original order - surname first, followed by the given name.

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Viewing all posts with tag: manga reviews

New shoujo manga and anime discoveries

I’m growing more and more bored with Asuka: X is fine but I buy the tankoubon anyway, the same goes for Gouhou Drug; there are no other series I’m following in Asuka at the moment… there will be something new from Kazumi Yuana in Asuka 8 so I’ll wait for that and see if I like it. If I don’t I’ll have to find a new magazine I can read monthly. It’s kind of difficult though cause you either find mags with romance-only or fantasy-only stories in them… and even though I’m buying Asuka mainly for it’s fantasy stories, I’ve liked the debut yomikiri that were more comedy and romance oriented best (like the two stories by Ama Mianko — or is it Amami Anko? there’s only hiragana so I can’t say for sure). I’ve ordered a whole bunch of mags to see if I like the stories in them. I noticed I should’ve ordered Lala too (I didn’t think of Hakusensha mags >_<)... Oh well, I do that in a month or so.
I’ve had so much free time in the last three days and I’ve read a few manga tankoubon. Two of them were Akuma de sourou 4 and 5. I’m enjoying this series more and more. It’s probably one of the cheesiest stories I’ve read in a long time, but in a serious, touching way. Kayano is alright (her constant crying can be a bit annoying at times), so are all the other characters (all very well developed, all with their own background stories). I loooove the fashion in the manga. It’s awesome! I must say I adore Takanashi-sensei for her fashion taste^^ Well, it basically matches my own and that’s why I sometimes enjoy just looking at the character’s clothes as much as I enjoy flipping through Kera. It’s such a shame Akuma de is ending very soon. The last chapter started in Margaret 6. I hope Takanashi-sensei will start publishing a new series soon!

I’ve also been watching a few new anime series. Short impressions:
.hack//SIGN – the first episode wasn’t to thrilling, too RPG-ish. The music was too loud at times, I couldn’t make out the dialogue very well (oh well there were subtitles, but…). The series started to get me with episode 2 though… It has that certain bit of mystery that it needs to keep me interested. Can’t wait to see more of it! (It’s been licensed a few days ago, so fansubs are hard to get. I’ll wait for the commercial release then.)
Chobits – hmmmmm. The animation is well done, so is the voice-acting. The opening and ending are the usual anime j-pop. The story is a bit different than in the manga, I like it nevertheless. The whole magical maid-parody CLAMP style concept is cool, I’m just hoping it’ll get a bit darker (not like I want anything to happen to Chii, no no).
RahXephon – I love it! Wasn’t too thrilled when I saw the first episodes a few months ago but the more I watch of it the more I fall in love with it^^ Ah yes, I love mecha stories… I’m glad there’s neither a whiny Shinji-type character nor an in-your-face-sexy kind of girl character in there. I especially love the more quiet and serious parts (even though the action-packed fight scenes are awesome). I’ve also noticed that the ending theme sounds a bit like the ending theme of Please save my earth… I haven’t watched PSME for years but I think the styles of both songs are very very similar. Oh well, it’s one of Yohko Kanno’s typical styles I guess. I like RahXephon’s OP (Hemisphere by Sakamoto Maya) better though.

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Categories: Anime, Manga, Various.
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Posted on May 28, 2002 (Tue, 9:24 pm). .

Asuka update

A small Asuka manga update:

I think Hyakumantsubu no namida has lost its magic for me. It started all too well and fresh and exciting but at the moment the whole story is developing in all too predictable ways. The art isn’t as pretty as a few issues ago, too. Kazumi-sensei seems to draw the characters’ arms longer and longer with every new chapter o_O

Yumemiru machi – Disaster City Blues is growing on me, though. It started three issues ago. The first chapter got me quite interested, the second installment was kind of weird because I couldn’t make out the connection to what happened in ch.1 but now, with chapter 3, I’m completely hooked. First I wasn’t too impressed with the mangakas artwork (I didn’t like her previous series that ran in Asuka and Shoujo Teikoku), but for this story it seems to have changed a bit and it looks really good. The story is somewhere between fantasy and cyper-punk, both bizarre and fresh (in the sense of not repeating old plot devices of ‘alternative’ shoujo manga). Very cool.

Asuka 4 is supposed to come with a school calendar including artwork from Akira Onodera… can’t wait to get it. But it’s still more than a week until it’s released in Japan ;_;

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Categories: Manga, Various.
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Posted on Feb 14, 2002 (Thu, 3:39 pm). .

Shoujo manga reviews

…haven’t been in the mood for blogging, not even for going online. this is day 6 of watching cnn 24 hours a day. it’s so sad. i just don’t want to write about it. let me just say that I’m shocked, sad and scared.

on a much happier note: a few manga orders have arrived, so i have these piles of magazines (asuka, shoujo teikoku… comic eyes 10 hasn’t arrived yet, unfortunately) and mainly manga tankoubon spread across the floor of my room. here are some quick reviews on some of the things i’ve got:

kazumi yuana – sorayume no uta
aah, what can i say… i’ve been waiting for this eagerly as i’ve been very very fond of hyakumantsubu no namida, kazumi-sensei’s current series running in asuka. the tankoubon contains all chapters of sorayume no uta plus a yomikiri (forgot the title ^^; ). her character designs look pretty much like the ones in hykumantsubu (…), we have a male main character with blonde wild hair and a gaijin-looking female main character. you easily get the impression that kazumi-sensei uses the same characters ‘acting’ in different stories, just like actors would act in different movies.
so, yeah, even though the characters resemble those in hyakumantsubu (or rather just the other way round as sorayume is older than hyakumantsubu), the stories are actually quite different. sorayume is cyberpunk-ish science fiction, reminding me a little of yuki kaori’s neji, though the baby doll-like charcter designs in sorayume contrast with the rather dark story. in fact, with all that ‘robot boy acting human’ i felt that futuristic world was rather reminiscent of spielberg’s a.i, though, admittedly, sorayume has a much darker, sometimes even violent to gory feel, just without that gothic touch that yuki-sensei’s neji has.

sakamoto miku – nadeshiko club 1
just like w juliet this series was intended to be a yomikiri story in hakusensha’s bimonthly hana to yume. i was so hoping it would continue and so it did, due to its popularity among its japanese readers. the tankoubon contains the first chapters of nadeshiko club, a lovely typical shoujo story with a few bishounen. the first thing a noticed about the character design are the female character’s (whose name has just escaped me ^^; ) big eyes, that are not of that margaret comics style, but look rather empty. the male characters look very very stylish and fashionable though, with the mangaka basically focusing on their clothes and hair to make them look just like a jrock band.
i haven’t read the tankoubon yet so i can’t tell much about the plot. it’s basically quite a simple story. this small group of bishounen helps the female main character to maintain her little housework club. it’s really heart-warming, though not a too horribly cutesie way. oh yeah, tankoubon 2 is out next week, i’ll get that one as well, as soon as my financial situation has recovered ^^;

nanaji nagamu – parfait tic! 1
a series running in margaret. i was a bit hesitant whether or not to order it as i’m not too fond of margaret comics. i didn’t regret buying this one, though. the art is typical shoujo-style, yet probably aimed at a younger audience than nadeshiko club as the main characters are 15 of age and thus are looking a bit younger than those in nc. the story so far is sweet, entertaining, nothing too dramatic has happened though. i just need to read that kind of manga inbetween those more bizarre and fantasy-ish series i love so much. and i do enjoy parfait tic, though i could never be obsessive over a series like this one. i guess i’m just too old for it ^^;

shurei kouyu – alichino 3
i haven’t the slightest clue why it took them so long to get alichino 3 for me ;_; even the lithograph set which was released almost 2 months after the tankoubon came just two and a half weeks after its release in japan. aaahh, eyecandy. pretty costumes, gothic settings and plot, ryouko. what more does it take to make me happy…?

more to come later.

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Categories: Manga, Various.
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Posted on Sep 16, 2001 (Sun, 5:42 pm). .

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