Manga: Honto Yajuu

I got home really really late, so this is really late, whoops. Turning back the clock a bit here.

10 more days of NaBloPoMo whoop \o/ Here’s a really cute yaoi.

Manga: Honto Yajuu 「ほんと野獣」 a.k.a. Like the Beast

Honto Yajuu vol 1 cover

Honto Yajuu vol 1 cover

Honto Yajuu is a Yaoi, comedy, romance written and illustrated by Yamamoto Kotetsuko. It was serialised in July 10, 2008 and is currently ongoing with over 40 chapters, 7 tankobon volumes and growing. A drama CD was also released.

Ueda Tomoharu is quite happy with his job and relatively quiet life as one of the cops manning a local police box… until he runs into yakuza member, Gotouda Aki, while chasing down an underwear thief. It’s love at first sight and suddenly, Ueda is getting confessed to by Aki. Honto Yajuu details the forbidden, sparkling love story between policeman and yakuza.

WARNING: Guy x guy relationship. They have a lot of sex, but it’s all drawn very artfully so everything’s blocked, censored or just not drawn.

This is probably one of the most popular Yaoi manga series out there. Yamamoto-sensei is quite a veteran in this genre. If you regularly read BL or yaoi for the sweet romance above all else, and haven’t read Honto Yajuu, you’re definitely missing out on something.

Having a romance between a cop and yakuza, you’d think there would be a shit ton of drama about their troubles of being together due to the clearly opposites jobs and backgrounds, but Honto Yajuu doesn’t do that. The pacing and general atmosphere of the story is extremely mellow, providing a soothing and light-hearted feel to it. Even though Aki and Ueda have their own share of troubles as a couple, there are no major angst scenes overused by many yakuza-based stories. The story does address the serious issue of their (in a sense) ‘forbidden romance’, but it wasn’t portrayed as an extremely grave situation and blown to great proportions.

In that sense, Honto Yajuu isn’t something you read for the excitement. I have to mention that it gets repetitive and a little boring later on when the couple’s relationship is better-established. With the introduction of side characters for new arcs, I just hope it picks up again.

Honto Yajuu vol 5 chp 9.1

Honto Yajuu vol 5 chp 9.1

All the of the manga is undoubtedly on the cotton-candy sweet relationship between the couple and how cute they are. Even the art reflects that. It’s not detailed, it’s not great, but it’s clean and straightforward. Backgrounds are usually non-existant, simple if drawn. Lots of soft atmospheric screentones and effects are used. Everything hangs on the expressions and actions of the characters. I’m pretty in awe of how Yamamoto-sensei can take such a potentially-angst-ridden romance and turn it into such a simple, every-day story that is still interesting. The humor and light-heartedness helps.

And gosh darn… Honto Yajuu is really friggin cute. The couple is friggin sexy. And cute. I want to cover my face in secondhand embarrassment because my heart is gooey and everything is too cute. I’m probably overusing that ‘c’ word here, but how else is one supposed to describe a manga like this.

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