On his way to the school, Torii Akira helps a girl who was about to fall down. From that moment he keeps running into that girl, and she seems very happy to see Akira. Could this be the reason Akira can’t help to smile all day?
After reading this manga, I can honestly say I never want to hear the word "senpai" again. In this short 24 chapter manga you probably hear the word senpai a thousand times. It got to the point where I wanted to kill myself every time I saw the word. And trust me, on each page it's there at least 30 times. Despite this, I still continued onto it because of the creepy vibe I got from it.
Koharu no Hibi is a romance school manga with a twist where an obsessed loli,Matsuki, falls in love with a nerdy MC named Akira to the point where she is stalking him, gluing her hands to his, taping 1000 pictures of him to her walls, and even going as far as to dig through trash cans for the water bottle he just drink because it still has his saliva on it. Now if you're into this sort of thing, then maybe this is the manga for you.
It has its quirks where you're like "haha Matsuki being a stalking yandere loli is sort of cute" but it wears off quickly because the author has no imagination and therefore every chapter is of the loli grabbing onto the MC's and saying senpai a thousand times. No seriously, she says it every fucking moment no matter what is happening. I'm pretty sure it's the only word she knows. The way I think of it is Matsuki is a nonviolent version of Yuno, but one hundred times more annoying. Seriously, fuck this loli.
To make it worse, the male character is just your typical harem-esque character with no real defining features and is never daring. He kind of just goes along with whatever is happening and so its not even worth talking about him seeing as this whole manga is based around a loli yandere who is only capable of saying senpai.
The enjoyment I had for this was sort of high for the initial 5 chapters with her being a creepy stalker, but its charm wore off fast. What happened in 24 chapters could of been done in 15 or less. The fact that it had 24 chapters just shows that the author was attempting to milk it for all of its worth. Only problem is, it was never worth milking in the first place.
Overall this manga is pretty damn horrible. I only advice reading this if you have some sort of fetish where you want to be called senpai by some loli. But even then you will still have a hard time finishing it with its bland plot. I dare anyone to count how many times senpai is said in this manga. I'm pretty sure its in the thousands.read more
I can't talk about why I enjoy this series if I don't give away what happens in this series, so please, don't read this if you haven't read the whole manga yet. Or at least, what's been translated/released so far.
First of all, I'd like to talk about the art. To be quite frank, it does its job. The characters aren't extravagant, and the environments don't stick out that much. The only real way I can describe the drawings panel by panel is that they're just standard. You could stick these drawings into another romance manga and there really wouldn't be any difference. Normally, the art would rate a 5, or mediocre, because that's what it is. However, the author is extremely good at one visual effect, that of horror and surprise. When you look at those panels, you can really tell, Shit Just Got Real. The artist is good at conveying those moments, which there are quite a few of. With this, I'll segue into...
The characters! Yeah, you guys don't get to see the shitstorm yet. The characters in this series are very good, I'd argue. All do their job quite well, and the interactions between them are believable and even heartwarming at times. I'd like to say that applies to the protagonist as well, but I'll admit that I have a bias against most protagonists of this type, as they're simply supposed to be self-inserts. It's just an effect of the anime and manga market, and while I'd love for it to change and protagonists to become their own characters instead of useless shells, it isn't what sells. BUT ENOUGH ABOUT MY OWN RANTS, we need to get on with it.
The protagonist of this series is surprisingly competent. While he's a bit naive and genre-blind, he does at times show qualities that you don't normally see in romance manga protagonists. The most applicable of these traits is that he has a god damned backbone. When shit hits the fan (and it does) he stands up for other characters and really tells the offending character off. This impressed me, since most protagonists of his type are spineless wimps. So, bravo to the author for a character that can stand up for himself.
The heroine of this story, Mutsuki, is my second favorite character, and she's the focus of most of the events in the story. Most events are related to or caused by her. However, don't misinterpret this. She isn't a strange rich girl, or some other kind of extraordinary person. She's just a normal little gi-pfft hahaha no. I'm sorry, I can't go on with this charade any longer. To be frank, she's a "Yandere". This is a japanese fan term that means a character with mental problems usually resulting in over-the-top bloody insanity balanced with cute romantic moments. Mutsuki decides after a run-in on the train one morning that she will attach herself to the protagonist. However, she's a very lonely girl, so Protagonist is the only one she really relates to. Therefore she takes the word "attach" quite literally sometimes, doing such strange things as giving a blowjob to his recorder, and digging his used water bottles out of the trash to keep as mementos. Most of the tension in the story is because of the fact that she takes a long time before she goes into full Yan mode, but I'll talk about that later. Her love for Protagonist is interuppted late in the story by Mika, who is my favorite character in the whole damned manga.
Mika is the osananajimi, or Childhood Friend of the manga. I'll be honest, Childhood Friends are usually dumb. They really only exist to serve as a foil for the other love interests, and they usually build their character off of interactions with others, rather than internal character traits they hold. However, Mika is an exception to the rule. She doesn't give a shit how long Protagonist and Mutsuki have been together, she'll tear them apart so that she can be with Protagonist. She doesn't do it violently however, but does it so that the two doubt their love for each other. However, she truly shines in ch 15, when the two love interests are studying with Protagonist. After going to the bathroom or something, she comes back to the room to find the other two making out. Thus she FLIPS OUT, and tells Mutsuki that she doesn't love and understand him enough for her to acknowledge Mutsuki as Protagonist's girlfriend. This is the best moment in the series for her. She asserts rather passive-aggressively that she loves him, and that Mutsuki doesn't love him enough.
That's right, she just told the YANDERE that she doesn't love the protagonist enough. This is the sole reason I like her character best.
Seguing into the story review, that point in the story is when shit hits the wall. Mutsuki flips her Yandere switch from Cute into Crazy, and ch 15 page 40 I have to say is the most satisfying release of a series long tension I have ever seen. You can tell from the FULL PAGE crazy face that shit just got real, and that somebody's going to die. However, I mentioned something earlier that I should really go back to.
The tension of Mutsuki's character was the thing that really made the series shine for me. From the chapters before 15, you knew: Something was wrong with this girl. At some point, she was going to lash out and commit such horrible acts of pain and suffering that all Yanderes before her would pale in comparison. However, the author knew this. So, he did what I consider to be a genius move: Show all the signs of Crazy, but never actually let the switch flip. You knew she would go crazy at some point, but never knew when. He set up situations in which you thought, "Oh, she's sure to flip out now. She's acting really creepy, maybe she's gone full Yan now." However, he never did it until a proper rival love interest showed up. That's all it took, and I have a feeling that at Ch. 17, we haven't seen her full wrath yet. I can only hope that she goes full Crazy and starts murdering bitches.
One more thing before I end this review is one character I forgot to mention. There's another girl character who's the Protagonist's best friend. I can't remember if we ever learn her name, and she really only exists as a plot device. I believe that she exists to establish the possibility of a alternate love interest for the protagonist early on, because she seems very interested in his love life. Early on, I posited that the situation would evolve into one similar to School Days, in which two women fought over the same man and eventually murdered each other. That hasn't happened yet, but I could see her friendship for the main character blossoming into love, especially if the author decides to use the old "love coordinator falls for her client" cliche.
Now it's time to get on to the bad points. Mutsuki, at least at this point, has no real reason to be in love with the main character. She bumped into him one time on the train. That's it. Brilliantly, Mika points this out during her argument with Mutsuki, which sends her further down the deep end. I have my own theory, but at this point the author still hasn't truly addressed it, so my point still stands. There is one point that I believe really isn't necessary, but I need to address it anyway. This manga lays the romance down HARD. At some points I could feel the sap dripping through my veins as I read "I LOVE YOU" a billion fucking times. Yes, we get it. You love him. You spend time with him. But for fuck's sake, you can stop SHOWING US NOW. Perhaps this is filler, or maybe the author's trying to make a contrast between her Yan and Dere sides. However, I disliked the pure sap flowing between the pages sometimes, so that might be a minus to whoever would read this manga.
Overall, I would recommend this to any Yandere fans out there, or others who can stand the truly disgusting amount of fluff and sap in this manga. It really did have a great turning point in Ch 15, so if you enjoy the tension of a character's fall into madness, I would recommend this anyday.read more
Koharu no Hibi is one of my favorite mangas right now because it is one of the few mangas based on a stalker/yandere and it is perhaps the only one about a completely realistic relationship with one.
Story: 8 - Koharu no Hibi is the most vanilla manga I have ever read even though it is about such a controversial and sometimes disgusting (to some people) topic. The story revolves completely around romance and subtlety. A lot of the time, you will feel like the main character is reacting to something in an underwhelming or overwhelming way, but when you think about things, the turn of events and how they are dealt with is usually reasonable.
The biggest success with this manga is that it explores the ideation of a stalker and how romance would be with one in a realistic yet simplified light. Even better than that, most chapters introduce a new way to look at the relationship and understand the mind of a stalker. Some of the scenes are really beautiful even though everything is lighthearted and simple (almost like a children's manga).
Another interesting thing is that this book is considered Shoujo targeted for men (the magazine it was published in was for that demographic, but I think it got discontinued). It is definitely not as flowery in presentation or as emotionally sensitive with its protagonist as a normal Shoujo manga, but it definitely feels like reading Shoujo.
The biggest thing that people might consider gross is that the main love interest is probably three or more years younger than the main character. She likely starts at the age of 13 or 12, while the main character is very tall and perhaps 15 or 16 years old. In Japan, I suppose that this stuff is sort of acceptable, but it kind of ruins a lot of the enjoyment you could get from this manga.
The climax of this manga is really fun. I think it succeeds in making Koharu a Yandere without doing what a Yandere would normally do. Also, it feels nice to see the ending, especially given how it unconventially approaches intimacy.
The biggest flaw of this manga is that there is a bit of fluff despite there not being many chapters. Some of the chapters might not feel meaningful at all except for the interesting, romantic, funny or sexy stalker quirk that shows up in every chapter.
Art: 7 - The drawings of Koharu no Hibi are simple most of the time, but the art that is shown is not terrible-looking and has consistent detail. There are a few, rare, well-drawn picturesque scenes to enjoy.
What I like about Koharu (the love interest) in design is that she is not drawn to be pretty. I hate how female protagonists usually look like in manga and it was nice to see such a human looking character. Oddly enough, there is no real reason that she looks more realistic and imperfect. Anyway, stalkers are known to be pretty ugly so that I think that this was an important detail for the author to have included.
The two male characters in the manga look almost the same and that is a bit annoying. Other people are not drawn very often after the manga progresses and I think that subtracted some of the strength in the environment. The other female characters however, are perfectly drawn, especially considering their roles in the story. One of the later characters looks slightly unique and very enticing and she really spiced up the story with her appearances.
However, there are a lot of terrible, terrible panels that almost make me forget about the good things in the art style. What I am talking about are the close-ups of Koharu, which usually look like the same drawing again and again. The technique used in drawing the eyes just looks really ugly and fake and weird and does not portray any emotion. Even though it sounds like that would make sense given who Koharu is, this is definitely just a bad taste in dramatic panels that happens very excessively at the beginning of the series. I am really, really glad that it starts to dwindle down in the later chapters.
Character: 8 - The characters are pretty well rounded. The main character provides the apprehension the story needs to avoid completely sexualizing the Yandere (or women in general) as manga usually does. This more down-to-Earth precedent is essential to Koharu no Hibi and I am really glad that the main character is who he is. Also, he is eased into love and he is pretty relatable in the common sense yet acceptance of the taboo inherent in most of us. He can talk to Koharu in a fatherly way that actually makes Koharu a productive member of society. It is a really cool dynamic that I would not mind being reused by another author.
Koharu is a really fun character, of course. She seems like she will be a static character, but she is actually receptive to the person who she loves (which makes her probably the sympathetic stalker in literature). Koharu will violate personal space and do unsanitary or ambiguously unsanitary things every day. She will become a total time sink for Senpai if he is not able to remedy her. The bento boxes she makes "Senpai" each day are made with her love and perhaps there is something lost in translation that makes it impossible to know what is being implied after the concept is introduced.
One will wonder whether or not this is exactly how a lot of stalkers act. I believe that stalkers really are this way, but I have never encountered one before. I really feel like they are villainized waaay too much. Just like in other crimes, stalking is simply under-reported for women because it is more acceptable. Men are usually dangerous stalkers, but I still think that some could be alike Koharu.
Natsuki really makes this manga wonderful. She is the common Shoujo manga character who pushes the main characters to love each other and uses the term "lovebird" all of the time. The fact that she is in a manga about stalkers would be enough, but she is not deterred by Koharu's actions, which makes it all very cute and fun to watch. I just love Natsuki so much because of how vital she is in changing Akira's (the main character) mind about falling in love with a stalker.
Natsuki's boyfriend is kind of funny. He is completely silent most of the time, but he usually says something to comedic effect. In spite of that, he is always serious and soft in presence, but he totally submits to or helps enforce Natsuiki's whims. It is really funny to see how Akira can not turn Natsuki down because of him.
The character who comes into the manga later on is a huge spoiler, but I will just say that she appears to be perfect fanservice at first, but then is taken in a really cool-minded, constructive direction.
Enjoyment: 9 - Oh my god, this is just my ideal dream world! The combination of everything is so beautiful. If only more characters and polyamory could have been introduced! This manga can be rather boring and lacking, but the good moments are just invaluable and I do not care about the faults that much.
Overall: 8 - I would love to buy some manga and support this author soon. This is yet another mangaka who has surprised me with the deep thought that can be given in examining the stalker/yandere relationship in real life. To support him would show that writing about such 'crazy' societal romances is a profitable, worthwhile choice.read more
Well figured there should be a second review on the story now that its done. Overall the story(whats there of it) is exactly what it should be and does it's job well considering the 24 chapters that the manga has, and i would easily place it at a 9 for the genre(dont expect a primarily comedy/romance to match up with adventure/dramas).
As for art i'll agree with the previous reviewer that it wasn't really anything special, i still kind of liked it so i'll rate it around a 8(6 for normal and an extra 2 points added to the average due to the 10s on yandere moments and the reactions to them), but for normal scenes it's not anything that will wow you. Though koharus image suits her really well.
Will also agree that all the way through the characters are the main selling point of this series. they have about as much depth as you can get in 24 chapters, and koharus interactions with all of them are profoundly interesting... and at some points slightly scary :|... seriously this manga does sweetness like no other... its almost impossible not to swoon over the cute little almost innocent romance they have going most o the time, but lurking behind it at all times is some over the top holy crap wtfbbq moments... most of which are overall a positive, others less so >_>. As for the other chars the childhood friends(both the present 2 and the one that pops in later)are really the only other significant influences on the story... there are other people but even after multiple reads i dont really remember any of them :/, and as mentioned before one even goes so far to provoke a yandere. every galge game player in the world was instinctively hoping they had saved after seeing that crap :|. As for the supporters both are pretty interesting in their own rights but never quite in the spotlight... personally im pretty sure they have their own thing going on but it just never had time to make the manga, hoping on a omake or something to show how they turned out. Anyway long story short, while there isnt quite a large cast, the ones present give off a near perfect feeling forthe main storyline, and definitely make the reading experience much better.
to sum it up, if you want the standard diabetes causing cute romance this is probably not for you... you'll think it is at first, but its not... koharu is just too extreme a character for that. If, however, you want an adorable romance with some major sudden twists thrown in then you found the gold mine. Personally i love yanderes so this review may be a bit biased, but overall i place this at a 9/10... or more precisely probably a 9.5.. ive read the story 3 times so far and will probably do so again. if you think you can handle koharu, then by all means give this a try.read more