12 Days of Something III: A Year in Classy Manga

Minamoto-kun Monogatari, still as great as ever.
Minamoto-kun Monogatari, still as great as ever.

I probably don’t talk about the manga I read as much as I should on this blog. I do read much more than the average person on MyAnimeList.That would be 63 different manga at the time of this post being written. Almost all of them seem to fall into the realm of unlicensable, borderline eromanga . That said, I do believe there is some quality in that list that I’m going to use this post to highlight.

abnormaljoshi08aI’m going to start off with Abnormal-kei Joshi, which is the story of a boy named Shinya who doesn’t understand women. That wouldn’t be interesting enough on its own, so to make it perfectly understandable why he doesn’t they all are abnormal beyond what one would expect of normal people. Among the girls after his attention are those with personality traits that range from simple chuunibyou to a childhood friend that’s a serial killer to a younger sister who destroys any signs of his interaction with other girls to a vampire, a masochist and a stalker. The latter is pictured above after giving Shinya an invoice for stalking someone other than him.

The manga actually works on a level beyond Shinya’s interactions with the women in his life. The story at the moment is building on how he can use the relationships he has forged with them to help protect his little sister from another killer. It’s a bit of a slow starter in the early chapters though as the characters eccentricities take center stage, but well worth it once the story kicks in.

ikyoutei07aIinazuke Kyoutei fits more in with the type of classy manga and anime I tend to cover here. This manga by the eromanga veteran Fukudahda is pretty much clean of pornographic content. This is central to this harem story because the plot centers around the girls after the protagonist Wataru and the chastity pact that forms the rules of pursuit. That’s not to say that it isn’t perverted in anyway. The individual dates the girls go on with the student/part-time programmer do turn risque. Plus, there is a scene between the girls in the pact and Wataru’s childhood friend Tomo trying to draw her into the pact that is really problematic. However, for harem fans this is one well worth a read.s4k02a
Shinigami-sama to 4-nin no Kanojo is yet another harem manga featured in this post. Kaoru is the “forever alone” protagonist of this piece who has to become a normal person to save him from death at the hands of the shinigami named Airi. As a desperation measure, he sends love letters to 4 girls the next day and they all accept. He has to maintain these relationships for a period of 3 months or he dies.

What makes this one worth reading from my perspective is the characters. Airi is constantly trying to screw with the shoujo manga loving main character. Then the girls themselves are much deeper than the stereotypes that they first appear in a dark way. This is a recent starter, but for harem romantic comedies it’s one I look forward to regularly.

wgmdc03aTo keep things more equal opportunity, the shoujo harem Watashi ga Motete Dousunda is about a fujoshi who contrives to lose a bunch of weight after one of her favorite characters dies and then becomes popular with her new look. The thing that I like about this one is that Kae does not compromise her character even as she becomes more popular. In the early chapters she has 4 boys after her, but she gives them otaku gifts and actually ships them together. The setup is a bit troubling though, but her character shines through.

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Minamoto-kun Monogatari, as I highlighted last year, continues to be as good as ever. The chapters are so short it’s easy to get caught up in this man’s story of re-enacting The Tale of Genji as part of her aunt’s academic project.

8 thoughts on “12 Days of Something III: A Year in Classy Manga”

    1. I know that someone out there might consider it a deconstruction of the harem genre, but I think the way it plays with audience expectations for the genre is masterful. I’m hoping there’s a lot more to come when these characters are more fully fleshed out because it looks like there is a ton of potential in building them up.

    1. I think the aunt is a really interesting character actually. As the series progresses, I think it will be to see if she had Minamoto’s happiness in mind the whole time.

  1. While I’m not a fan of harems or reverse harems, there is some interesting material in here. I’ve been looking for new perv- I mean “classy” manga to read for awhile. And I think I found a couple of candidates. Thanks.

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