High School junior Takanashi Nao has a problem: she has a crush on her dreamy older brother, Shuusuke. Fortunately, when Nao discovers that she was adopted as a child and they're not related by blood, it seems like the coast is clear—but Shuusuke just doesn't see it that way.
To make matters worse, Nao finds herself in direct competition against Shuusuke's hot childhood friend, Iroha, not to mention class president Mayuka. As all three girls vie for Shuusuke's attention, Nao soon learns that all is fair in love and war!
This manga is better than you probably think it is.
I'll start with the only real negative: this isn't much more than a typical ecchi series, so you shouldn't attempt it if you're expecting any real romance or character development. There's a bit of fanservice, but not to the degree of, say, KissxSis or Yomeiro Choice. The fanservice actually leans toward cutesy, moe shots and specific fetishes than the traditional boobs-in-face style that I'm personally sick of.
The characters are probably the best part of this series. Their personalities are generic, but the dialogue is extremely entertaining, and it's fun to watch them interact with each other. I literally laughed at a few of the comedic scenes, which is surprising since many self-proclaimed"comedy/ecchi" manga aren't actually funny. The art is also extremely good, perhaps thanks to the fact that it's published monthly (Web Comic High). The characters are visually appealing and each panel is fairly detailed, but I'm even more impressed by how well the expressions and reactions complement the dialogue. You'll probably grow attached to the O_O emoticon after reading this one.
Altogether, this is an above-average ecchi/comedy that's actually pretty funny. Don't pretend to read it for the plot; read it for the cute characters and hilarious dialogue.read more
Let's not beat around the bush: I don't Like You At All, Big Brother! is a harem manga. It just is. But while I would't go so far as to say this manga is a parody of the harem comedy, it's certainly self-aware and both mocks and indulges in the genre's tropes. It's also about incest, since at some point Japan decided that two siblings, blood-related or otherwise, getting it on was the hottest thing in the world, but it doesn't take that very seriously either.
Written and illustrated by Kouichi Kusano and published in English by Seven Seas in 2-volume omnibus editions, I Don't Like You At All, Big Brother! tells the story of Nao, a 16 year-old high schooler in love with her older brother Shuusuke. Or rather, in love with the IDEA of being in love with her older brother, and also the idea that he has naughty thoughts about her. So obsessed is Nao that, two chapters in, she reacts to the news that she was adopted as a child not with shock and incredulity as might be expected, but instead with disappointment at no longer being able to enjoy an illicit affair with a real blood-relating sibling (before realising that, actually, it's not so bad because now society has no reason to oppose their love!). Before the reader even gets the chance to wonder whether this manga has a serious bone in its body, Kusano took a potential minefield of melodrama--and in any other harem story it would've been--and diffused it with perfect comic timing.
The early chapters are all about Nao. She has the funniest, most verbose lines ("I also noticed the dramatic attrition rate of tissues in Onii-chan's room ONLY") and it's hard not to be amused at the thought and planning she puts into her seduction schemes, nor at the lengths she eventually goes to in putting them into practise. She even conducts regular inspections of Shuusuke's room to ensure that he's only reading little sister porn; everything else has gotta go. When Nao becomes concerned that Shuusuke has apparently renounced porn altogether, and more importantly seems determined to resist her charms (e.g. deliberate panty flashes), she drags him to the adult section of a bookstore where she loudly declares that she's buying him ¥30k worth of porn in order to rejuvenate his inner pervert, and proceeds to pick out the most hardcore material she can lay her hands on. Shuusuke, for his part, is not a terribly interesting character, a mainly blank slate characterised only by his passion for pornography - but that alone gives him an edge over the average harem lead.
Kusano wheels out another hoary old harem trope with the long-forgotten childhood friend character who first appears half way through the first volume, but again he has some fun with it. Y'see, Iroha isn't quite the pure-pure virginal maiden one has come to expect from the childhood friend archetype; no, she's every bit as perverted as Shuuskuke and Nao, a voyeur who observes Shuusuke's masturbation habits (amongst other things) via the use of a telescope from her apartment and who quite openly offers her mind and body to him. Naturally she clashes with Nao, and the two quickly establish an amusing rivalry based on who can seduce Shuusuke first.
This rivalry rages on until Mayuka, the boys love-obsessed class rep, is introduced in volume 3. Owing to a mix-up, Shuusuke ends up destroying one Mayuka's BL books. When Mayuka finds out she isn't best pleased, and decides to make Shuusuke her "pet". To her this means having someone to buy BL for her, and someone to talk about it with. Shuusuke erroneously believes it means... something else. And so do Nao and Iroha, who team up to defeat their new foe. Hilarity ensues.
What I've described so far is what sets this harem manga apart from other harem manga I've read: the characters are varying degrees of insane, from the slightly kooky to the completely off their rocker. Even Nao's two school friends, the closest this manga has to straight (wo)men, find amusement in covertly stalking the bizarre circus that is the Shuusuke/Nao/Iroha "love" triangle. For the most part the series' humour is a mixture of bawdy slapstick, surprisingly snappy dialogue, and "I can't believe they went there" moments. It takes standard, cliché genre set-ups (such as the beach and pool chapters) and cranks the crazy dial all the way up. Is it big and clever? No. Is it riotously funny and entertaining? Well, I suppose it depends upon your tolerance for silly sex comedy, but I certainly think so.
Which brings me to the art. It isn't great. Characters are stick-thin and gangly, with long pencil necks, large jug ears, and massive man hands. The girls also have a severe case of sameface, their only distinguishing feature being their hair (and even then it can be tricky telling Iroha from one of Nao's friends). Having said that, it's not without a certain simplistic comic charm that kind of works, and the girls are cute. And while the series is as racy and risqué as they come, benefiting from its serialisation in an online seinen publication, it's not reflected in the art itself which is relatively tame in terms of fanservice. The cheesecake shots that are there are somewhat neutered by the odd character designs; they're just not that sexy.
I Don't Like You At All, Big Brother is a harem manga. There's just no getting around it. But I hope I've done enough to convince at least one of the three people who will read this all the way through that it has a bit more going for it than your average garden variety harem. Just a bit.read more