Was trying to come up with a few manga to write for the rest of NaBloPoMo and order them in a planned list, but halfway through I realised I had started thinking of planning everything out as a chore and that really irked me. Doing stuff for my blog wasn’t supposed to be some sort of ‘assignment’ to slog through, but something I do because I want to. If going through NaBloPoMo one day at a time — writing about some random manga I remember at the spur of the moment — makes me happy
(whether I can write a whole essay or not HAHA), I’ll do that.
Today I feel like some Shoujo, so here’s the latest one I’ve read.
Manga: Ookami Shoujo to Kuro Ouji 「オオカミ少女と黒王子」a.k.a. Wolf Girl and Black Prince
Ookami Shoujo to Kuro Ouji Vol 1 cover
Ookami Shoujo to Kuro Ouji is a Shoujo manga series written by Ayuko Hatta that started publishing in 2011 and is ongoing with currently 8 individual volumes. As with many Shoujo manga, romance and comedy are prevailing genres. It was a adapted into a drama CD in 2013 and an anime adaptation is currently airing this season. I’m keeping up with the anime, but this post is just about the manga. Ookami Shoujo to Kuro Ouji will hence forth be referred to as Ookami Shoujo.
Shinohara Erika is a 16-year-old-girl who tells her friends about her romantic exploits, despite the fact that she’s never had a boyfriend in her life. When her friends start getting suspicious, she randomly snaps a photo of a good-looking guy on the street and shows it to them, later finding out that said guy is a school-mate in the same year, Sata Kyouya. She tries to make him her fake boyfriend, but unknowing to Erika, Kyouya isn’t as sweet as he seems.
WARNING: None. Just… As long as you resist the need to try and strangle the characters in exasperation or punch a wall to release your shoujo-feels, I think you’ll be fine.
Even though the relationship ups and downs between the titular couple is pretty generic like all Shoujo manga, what’s a little different about Ookami Shoujo is that between the protagonist couple of the series, there’s this extremely mild, very miniscule, sadist and masochist relationship going on. It’s present enough that you get exasperated with the both of them for doing/tolerating what they do, but that’s just part of the romance’s charm (if you can call it that). That was something interesting that drove most of the plot and resulted in some pretty funny scenes throughout the story.
But even with the psychological quirk, and as regular shoujo manga, there’s so much shit at the beginning that resolves so fast, I started to wonder if there was something fundamentally wrong with one, if not both of them. It does get very tiring at times. I guess it’s a little hard when you see a character pretend so hard to make friends when making friends by pretending has never crossed your own mind much. If you think deeper about the general starting plot, it does bring up some depressing notions on how everyone is pretending in some way whether anyone knows it or not. But I’m thinking too deep here… this manga’s not dark at all.
Considering Hatta Ayuko-sensei’s has had a number of previous works, Ookami Shoujo’s art already started out pretty clean. It gets quite a boost in contrast in later chapters though, where more and somewhat darker screentones are used. But that might just be me. It’s not that the mood of the manga changes much, but you can see a slight difference in the impact of Ayuko Hatta-sensei’s manga style. Does that even make sense? Gah… I hope so.
Overall, I can pretty much understand the appeal of this manga in the shoujo genre, especially with the very slightly abusive, give and take relationship between the two titular characters. Sometimes their personalities leave a lot to be desired, but it’s sweet. I can even say I understand the the girl’s POV to a certain extent. But after the point in the manga when you get through their struggles of getting together, I find myself continuing just for the sole reason of seeing some sort of development for the side characters instead. I’ve seriously preferred some of the main couple’s friends right from the beginning.
If you’re a shoujo-person or someone like me who reads any sort of genre, the different kind of shoujo-relationship might be something to consider reading Ookami Shoujo for. Or maybe you can read it for the side characters like I do XD
Had previously gone through a shoujo phase when I was younger, but that was so long ago I can’t even remember the names of most of the series I’ve read OTL Maybe I should start reading more Shoujo manga again… and re-read the ones from previously too.