There's no actual "fucking" in the title, that was me expressing incredulity. There is, however, fucking in the manga itself. It's a shoujo manga where the "bad boy" character in the high-school love triangle is literally Satan. I don't remember why Satan's going to high school. I guess the same reason vampires do.

It's hilarious, particularly in really stilted scanlations. Satan shows he's secretly a nice guy by adopting a persecuted crow-demon child.
at which I once merely rolled my eyes.

I cannot handle Chigusa in Silver Diamond anymore. He needs to keep his hands off that teenager.
JOHN: ok. what's this story about?

JOHN: ogre sex, or salamander shipping, or something?

ARANEA: Nope! Although I would 8e happy to tell you all a8out those topics another time.

Aranea Serket: A huge idiot who cannot effectively convey her fannish zeal for things in under 2,000 words, thus making everyone else mistrust/hate the things in question.

I overidentify with Aranea! How many ineffective rambling rec posts have I even written about Vampire Game? Probably a lot.

(Okay, Vampire Game in one sentence: It's an inexplicably non-misogynistic vampire manga, sort of about Bella Swan attempting ineffectually to use Edward Cullen to destroy her enemies, drawn really badly and adapted into English by someone who thought jokes about anal sex and jell-o were just the very best thing.)
Absolute Boyfriend, by Watase Yuu

Once upon a time, in a faraway land, Watase Yuu became envious of Chobits, Video Girl Ai, Saber Marionette, and the rest of the loser-guy-gets-a-sexbot genre, and decided that she would make her own loser-girl-gets-a-sexbot series. It was exactly like all the others, except by Watase Yuu. The end.

Accel World, by Kawahara Reki, Aigamo Hiroyuki, and probably the Devil

In the future, everyone has an internet port installed in their necks at a young age, which allows you to enter a Second Life-like virtual reality. An insecure fat kid named Haruyuki plays virtual reality games to escape from daily bullying. His skill at gaming attracts the attention of the most popular girl in school, who invites him to join a secret game called Brain Burst, which confers special real-world powers on its players.

Though Haruyuki's uselessness and social anxiety are impressive even for a shounen manga hero, he is nonetheless constantly surrounded by blushing big-eyed girls who stare deeply into his eyes and tell him all about his good qualities. Which I guess he demonstrates offpanel, to avoid any risk of making the reader feel outclassed. Even his game avatar is initially a cartoon pig. When in battle, he switches to a skinny robot which is literally faceless, to make it easier for readers to project themselves into the fight scenes.

I hope that this manga represents the industry's apex of cynical calculation, because the thought of what lies beyond this peak cannot but terrify. It was, obviously, released in conjunction with a light novel series, an anime, a video game, and at least two other separate manga, in a hideous supernova of corporate evil.

Vampire Knight, by Hino Matsuri

Vampires, as we all know, desire nothing more than to go to high school. Those bastards absolutely love going to high school. I mean, they never learn anything - they barely even go to class, that would cut into their brooding time - but it affords them the opportunity to fondle the throats of virginal teenagers, which is all that's really important.

Yuuki is a human girl who is simultaneously in love both with Zero, a short-tempered tsundere human boy, and Kaname, the gentle but ambiguously ominous vampire boy who once saved her life. It takes only a bare modicum of genre knowledge to realize that any relationship she might form with the Kaname is horribly doomed - especially once Zero turns into a vampire himself to up his exoticism and danger to appropriate levels. Unusually, this does not stop Hino Matsuri from taking Yuuki as far as possible along the wrong track without actually showing her having sex with Kaname. (It runs in Hana to Yume, which I don't think lets you do that.)

This is enjoyable angst-ridden shoujo with 200% the FDA's daily recommended intake of unresolved sexual tension. Unlike those other two manga I just discussed, however, it's not as slick a formula thing as Hana to Yume would probably like it to be. Hino cuts off plotlines at odd times, suffers from a problematic inability to make her male characters visually distinct from one another, and forgets to establish characters who will be important until the chapter in which they became important. (At one point I think she actually does this in the notes-from-the-author sidebar.)

This won't bother you if you're skimming over the other stuff to get to the scenes between Yuuki, Kaname, and Zero which is probably the sanest thing to do. While their relationships make perfect emotional sense, if introduced to even the slightest whiff of logic this series would disintegrate.
The Riddlemaster of Hed, Heir of Sea and Fire, and Harpist in the Wind, by Patricia McKillip

Roughly my zillionth reread. These really are her harshest books, both in terms of what she puts the heroes through and how much she makes you feel it.

Uchuu na Bokura!, chapters 1-13, by Hiwatari Saki

This is by the artist of Please Save My Earth!, and started its run about five years after the last volume of PSME came out. Hiwatari's art improved a lot over the course of PSME, and was even better in Global Garden a couple years after this. So, I don't know what happened here. Some kind of stylistic atavism? Everyone's head is shaped weird.

People with weird-shaped heads.The story is her favorite one: a timid, insecure girl is fought over by men and tormented by her own inability to assert herself. It's a little milder than PSME here, though. A girl named Haruko, whose mother has recently passed away, begins receiving harassing notes at school accusing her of being a witch. Which she is, though she has no obvious magical powers, aside from her ability to talk to her familiar, a cat named Silk, in her dreams each night.

Promptly, two boys come to her aid. One is short-tempered but clearly in love with her, and I'm just going to call him New Shion; the other is easygoing and clearly wrong for her, so I'll call him New Jinpachi. Three female classmates - her delicate best friend, a hyperactive ganguro girl, and a mysterious Chinese exchange student - also step up to help her find the bully.

There is initially some question as to whether Haruko is just imagining the whole witch thing, and thus an unreliable narrator, who may even be sending the notes to herself. Which is interesting! But then the Chinese girl turns out to be a witch, New Shion starts talking to the cat, and we get scenes where the True Culprit says ominous things. So, for conflict we're left with mean anonymous notes meeting Haruko's human wall of a support network and being brushed aside. And it's pretty obvious who's sending them.

I can't find scans past chapter 13, but I feel like I've got a pretty good idea what's going to happen. This is apparently what it looks like when Hiwatari phones it in: there's nothing really objectionable going on, but it's hard to care.
There's a set of twin girls who have boyfriends who are also a set of twins. For the first chapter or two it's note-perfect as a slight romantic comedy, but then one of the girls is abruptly killed in some sort of accident.

Everyone grieves. But the girl is brought back to life as a mindless zombie with a vocabulary of only a few words, and they're trapped in a house with it; there's some kind of physical threat over them if they try to leave. The dead girl's boyfriend, breaking down under the stress, becomes obsessed with the zombie, convinced that there is meaning in its gestures and words, and that it still loves him.

...I've just realized that this sounds like the sort of dream that I'd have. To clarify, I am in fact describing an actual shoujo manga.

I saw it on some scanlation group's site maybe eight years ago. The group primarily worked on shounen, and if I recall correctly they posted a warning to their readers not to be fooled by the saccharine nature of the first chapter.
Is there, like, fic explaining why Akito's behavior later on is not basically a retcon of Akito's decisions in volume one?
My process for reading this manga is like this:

Me, reading an even-numbered-chapter: This manga is stupid. It's getting stupid all over me. I should have stopped reading when she killed [person].

Odd-numbered-chapter: OH MY GOD THAT JUST HAPPENED

Even-numbered-chapter: Aw, now it's all stupid again. Stop introducing unnecessary new characters and bring [person] back to life.

Odd-numbered-chapter: OH GOD THIS MANGA IS AMAZING AND I AM NOT BEING IRONIC okay, maybe sort of ironic

Chapter 65 is an odd-numbered chapter. It is possibly the odd-numbered chapter. I AM SO HAPPY THAT THAT JUST HAPPENED, IT IS GREAT AND WILL RUIN EVERYTHING.

(I am not talking about the fact that Cain Gil tells Jizabel Vincent "Get your personal life in order! Quit hacking up dolls!" Though that's pretty good, too.)
I think chapter 79 might have the sanest representation of sexual assault I've ever seen in a manga. I was a little worried where that was going; I should not have been. Yumi Tamura knows what she's doing.
It's nice that there's a Forgotten Beasts of Eld manga, and everything, but you know what McKillip story was made for this? The Riddlemaster series.

Seriously, here are some character descriptions from book one:

Various small spoilers below. )
In specific, Yumi Tamura's 7 Seeds. I just finished the part where she works a miniature zombie apocalypse into her apocalypse-already-in-progress. The zombie apocalypse is a homage to The Day the Clown Cried.

And it actually works.

There is no one more awesome than Yumi Tamura.
I will not be happy with Pandora Hearts until it 1) brings Elliot back to life, and 2) makes Leo put his glasses back on.

I actually feel like my first condition is more reasonable than my second one. That death was weak.

Apologies to anyone who saw this when it first went up without the spoiler-hide. It's too late at night for CSS.
Every manga with a smiley, manipulative guy who knows everything but chooses, gratuitously, to share none of it with his ostensible allies, needs a scene like this. (No spoilers, except for Break not being dead yet.)

I especially want this inflicted upon Sanada Yukimura from Samurai Deeper Kyo, Sohma Shigure, and Ichimaru Gin. Screw those guys. (I'll leave Fai alone, he has enough to deal with.)
that it has repeatedly forgotten that Break has gone blind in the middle of the arc about him/her coming to terms with said blindness.

I mean, LOOK AT THIS PAGE. WHAT.

Mochizuki Jun, you are even better than Kubo Tite at remembering your characters' disabilities.
And so I took two two-hour-long naps today, to make up for the fact that I haven't slept through the night in about a week.

THIS IS THE STUPIDEST BRAIN SURGERY SIDE-EFFECT EVER. WHY THE ARM.

I kind of wish I were having headaches or something; no one takes the damn arm problem seriously. Even I can't take it seriously.

I have this problem where I sometimes lose the ability to concentrate on TV. It was really bad when I was a teenager - from about age 13 to 18, I didn't really watch TV for more than 10 minutes at a time unless somebody tricked me into going to a movie. It was somewhat better by the time I went to college, but I would still usually have to leave anime club and stand in the hall a few times every meeting to rest.

It's just hard for me to process this stuff; I think my video card is, like, an IBM Mobile Chipset-of-Doom. Sleep deprivation probably makes it worse, given that I just tried to watch a two-minute YouTube video and couldn't make it through. I had to look away and fiddle with my teacup.

In terms of media I can mentally handle, I am reading Doris Egan's Ivory series; it's good! Not as good as City of Diamond, though. I also finished:

Jane Eyre - I liked the ending better than most of the book; the fact that Rochester is capable of being sarcastic while traumatized and seriously injured irrationally endears him to me. I have a Thing about this.

I discuss this book in a context of my own emotional responses because I don't feel I know enough about the other literature of the period to talk about it sensibly in its own context. I just feel insecure about attempting such things!

Andromeda Tales, Volume 1 - And I thought things happened quickly in To Terra. This would be four or five volumes worth of plot in another manga. And, oh my god, Keiko Takemiya! There is a female character in this, and you didn't put her on a pedestal to shout out a guy's name in anguish! She's armed, stoical, and has a mysterious past!

There are twin Children of Prophecy, one of whom is destined to save the world. But is it the one we think it is? Also, this takes place in a hostile desert land ruled by an evil king. I feel fairly safe in assuming that Yumi Tamura had read this before she started work on Basara.

The Adolescence of Utena (the manga) - This is significantly less compelling than the film, as was the case with the other Utena manga and the anime. I think it came last of all the Utena media in publication order, and it ends with an epilogue that seems intended to be taken as last chronologically - as in, trying to tie the series and the film together into a whole. I think. I probably need to reread it and rewatch the film to be sure.

Anyway, if that is the epilogue in question's intention, it feels earned.
This one, which is presently running in Hana to Yume. The love interest is this lecherous fox demon who wants to kick the homeless heroine back out in the street. A flashback started that I think was going to explain how his tragic past excuses this, but I stopped because I decided I'd rather think about C# again.

In this brave modern age, are there manga romances where the guy isn't a creep who excuses his behavior by means of a tragic past? Is Ouran High School Host Club seriously all we've got there? Ouran and Nana to Kaoru. I just listed the softcore bondage comic, I don't know if you caught that. It was the very best I could do.

I'd probably be happier with the trend if the girl got to take that role occasionally. I mean, is there even any yuri manga where one of the girls is genuinely a jerk? Where she doesn't die, I mean.
They put out two "bonus" chapters of Ouran High School Host Club after the official last chapter! And they were both about Kyouya hurting people! And Haruhi being deadpan, socially inept, and easily-manipulated by self-confident older women! It's like Bisco Hatori knows me personally.
As I've complained before.

So I am naturally astonished to see that, in addition to not knowing English, it doesn't know French:



You know, you guys, you can just google "French dictionary" and one'll pop up. It doesn't cost anything. You could even just type those two words directly into the search engine, and end up here.

Also, this thing:



I don't think that "love-love" is really a word that needed to be retained for purposes of cultural authenticity. I feel, strongly, that there are English-language equivalents to this idea. That do not make people cringe.

(It's an actual Japanese term, yes, and one that's in common use. One of my students once, upon realizing how badly it offended my aesthetic sensibilities, started repeating it to me aggressively, fascinated by the contortions of my face.)

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