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segua
March 04, 2010, 12:54 PM
Title: Otome Gokoro
Genres: Shoujo, Romance, Drama
Author: Watanabe Ayu
Artist: Watanabe Ayu
Publication: Kodansha (Serialized in Betsufure)
Start Date:2008
End Date:N/A
Number of chapters at review: 8 (Compeleted)
Number of chapters read by reviewer: 8

General Overview:

It's Nene Kashiwagi's first high school debut! Her aim is love, but she's always been active in sports. How does an athletic girl charm a boy for herself when she doesn't even know the first thing about looking cute?


Category Ratings: (1-10 scale)

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Art: 9

The art is used in a manner that promoted the priority of the interactions of the characters. This helped the readers focus upon who the characters are and what they are trying to accomplish.

The use of screen tone certainly added an interesting flair to Otome Gokoro. It's used decoratively for the background, effects and the overall detailing throughout the story. This more than makes up for the lack of detail that would otherwise been dedicated to the line art itself. With the background more abstract, the whole world of Otome Gokoro centered solely upon the characters. The art is simplistically beautiful.

One thing I did notice was that the mangaka needed more work to make running poses or perhaps all action poses look more believable or natural looking. The body composition in relax poses are good though.

Another thing that bothered me was how at times, it was confusing who was saying what. The speech bubbles that were used throughout the manga made reading it confusing at times. It would've been helpful if the speech bubbles differentiated who was saying what when there were multiple characters in a scene.


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Plot: 10

Even though this was a very short read, it was an excellent read. It had all the ingredients of a love story densely packed into two volumes that spanned eight chapters. Watanabe Ayu skill as a storyteller is great. Little was spent upon narration but it built up enough background information for the reader to understand what's going on. From there on, the story played itself out.


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Characters: 10

It's amazing how much I got into the story. Just now as I type this, I realized that it was my imagination that helped built depth to the characters. Not a lot of information was given out on each character but enough was given to let the reader use their imagination to fill in the rest. So a lot of the depth of the character was implied but not explicitly stated. It was a great technique used by Watanabe Ayu. It really helped create a believable tense atmosphere. In addition, the reader had an implied understanding how and why such a tense atmosphere came about.


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Theme: 9

When it comes to love, don't be decisive! You either win or lose. The regret is painful. After some more thought, when it comes to a relationship, compatibility is most important. So be it a win or loss, may it be for happily ever after or else either choice could be regretful. So, why is losing so bad in this instance? The object of affection is someone who can't be easily replaced.


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Originality: 7

Another love story about a love triangle. In this one, the female leads were strong and aggressive or that's how I viewed them. This was a good change of pace. They just cut the chase and expressed themselves.


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Overall: 10

A fantastic read. Hands down, it's extremely comparable to other love stories that span about a dozen volumes. Nene Kashiwagi is such a spunky girl but adorable. The ending was just awesome or as some would say epic. As a man, this manga showcased the prowess of a young woman quite well or for that matter, the prowess of a woman. After reading this manga, I have never felt so overwhelmed by such a resolve from the lead protagonist. The ending was quite brutish, but I loved it. It makes it memorable. Before I end this review, this was the reaction the manga gave me because I was so moved:



MORE POWER TO THE GIRLS!



If you don't mind reading another love story, I would recommend this.





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