DISCLAIMER- I started writing this a month ago and I’ve been so damn lazy that I never finished writing it until today. I’m going to do more blogs though.
Oh hey look at that. A manga review. I guess I used to do those, yeah? Maybe I should get back to writing out my thoughts on the random junk I read/watch. My sleeping schedule is weirdly different these days so I spend a lot of my nights laying in bed browing Batoto for anything new that catches my eye. I’ll scan the popular manga series, but more often than now I’ll just play Russian Roulette with the random button until I finally find someone that grabs my interest. I like looking for new and unique series with strange, outlandish premises and really good art. I found Tsugumomo a few days ago and binge read it within three days or so while working on my webcomic art and commissions queue. I should probably talk about something before I touch on the actual review, though…
I’ve found myself having very different tastes lately. I suppose that’s not entirely true, I still love everything I used to and stuff but… hm… I don’t want to say ‘my standards have lowered’ but… Look, I’m an artist that spends a lot of time drawing inappropriate things for money because people pay me to do so. Not only that though, I wouldn’t do it just for money. I do it because it’s fun. As I embraced myself drawing so much lewd shit I’ve started to slip and read more and more tasteless things. Now, Tsugumomo (created by the charmingly talented mangaka Yoshikazu Hamada ) isn’t ENTIRELY tasteless. I think the old me would have still read Tsugumomo and enjoyed it just fine. But now that I’m a lewd artist by night I find myself enjoying reading more ecchi series than I used to simply because I enjoy seeing the way lots of artists render really cute girls. It lets me see how others are doing it and makes me think about how I’m doing it myself. I didn’t used to have this prerogative so the old me wouldn’t read a series that had ecchi for the sake of ecchi if that makes sense.
New me appreciates the fuck out of ridiculously good lewd art as long as there’s -some- level of a plot of likable characters attached to it between the shots of continuous anime titties. And yeah, Tsugumomo passes that hurdle with flying colors. I’ll say right now that Tsugumomo is really, really good for a multitude of reasons. In case you haven’t seen the art is ridiculously well drawn and outside of some hentai authors here and there I don’t think I’ve seen many artists that rival Yoshikazu Hamada’s skill at drawing naughty anime women. Seriously, his art is incredibly good from a figure drawing standpoint even as his girls typically have normal proportions and each of them has a distinct body type. Yes there are the archetypical busty onee-san, petite loli and so on and so forth, but his characters are perfectly exaggerated when it comes to their bodies. They look more like actual people than 99% of other ecchi series, probably because some of them actually have meatier proportions and even stomach rolls when bent over. It adds a lot of eroticism to the artwork when everything just feels so natural.
What surprised me more than pretty much anything though was that Tsugumomo was actually a really fucking good shounen battle manga. Fight scenes are fluid, no, more then fluid. They are very above average. I can’t stress how shocked I was that this series was actually a really damn good fighting manga. The powers each character has are really interested even if some of them are rather generic, thanks to the series use of ‘Tsukumogami’ ( a type of Yokai that once was an inanimate object but over time grows a soul and becomes a person ) as the main hook. Each character that is a fighter is partnered with a Tsukumogami and their powers are very diverse to say the least. The main character, Kazuya Kagami fights with the Tsukumogami who used to belong to his mother. Kiriha is her name, and she becomes the first member of Kazuya’s ever expanding harem. Kiriha herself is a very enjoyable character in all honesty, I really adore her and her antics. She’s a very adorable character.
The rest of the cast all fall into their own little manga archetype niche to predictable or at times not-so-predictable results. There are plenty of standout characters in this manga’s cast but on that note I really need to bring up something… It’s a problem I’m noticing bugs me more and more when I’m reading a new manga series. I think it was when I started reading Nurarihyon no Mago when I first became aware of this thing, and when I watched Re:Life I suddenly became aware of how much I hated this thing… What am I even referring to? Well, I think we can go and call it something along the lines of ‘High-School Syndrome’. High-School syndrome is when to the detriment of the plot the story focuses on the exceedingly less exciting part of the main character’s life to an unecessary amount. I am very sick of reading the same old shit, the same old one note classmate archetypes (the nerd friend, the pervert friend who never scores, the super-serious class rep, ect.)… It’s not that I don’t enjoy High School mangas, far from it. I just can’t stand when some manga put so much focus on it and it just turns into a gigantic slog to get through. I dunno, for an example of a series that does it right in my opinion would be early Hajime no Ippo. Makunouchi Ippo was a highschooler but at most they’d show brief little glimpes of his school life and only developed the two characters that mattered in that setting, his bully-turned-best friend and his guidance counseler. That’s it. It wasn’t necessary to show how his new boxing career was interfering with his school-life, but in so many other series including Tsugumomo it really feels like they have school-settings just because a bunch of other manga have school-settings.
Sorry that I went so long rambling about my personal gripes… I’m just really sick of obligatory culture festival arcs, obligatory sports festival arcs and one-dimensional recurring characters who shouldn’t even be graced with a name.
ANYWAYS, Tsugumomo is pretty lit and has some of the most sexiest drawn 2D ladies I’ve ever damn seen and you should read it if that gives you boners, or if you want to laugh.