Yuu Tomonoga is a genius who was accepted to an American university at the young age of 13 and later accepted into the university's graduate program. Unfortunately, he loses funding for his research, but decides to drop out and continue the research on his own. He travels back to Japan in hopes of getting funding, but he quickly runs out of money for daily living. Luckily, he gets a call from an old friend and accepts his offer to teach at an all-girls school.
The synopsis doesn't do this series justice. If you liked Taiyou no Ie or Hirunaka no Ryuusei, then you will like this one.
Yuu's story--his problems as a researcher, and his feelings as a new teacher--is really just the lens to get to know three girls in his class:
-- The genius who desperately wants to be "normal."
-- The model dealing with her first love.
-- The "loose" girl who never wants to go home.
It's these stories that drive this manga, and ultimately that make it great. These three are all beautifully drawn, brilliantly written, and wonderfully developed characters. They learn, they grow, and they
all achieve a happy ending that they worked hard to find. It's some of the best character development that I've ever seen in any manga.
The other side characters are hit-and-miss. Yuu and the older male teacher are both pretty well developed (though I would have loved to have seen an epilogue chapter from Yuu's perspective that fleshed out the romance aspect a bit more.) The female otaku friend of the three main girls was always just kind of hanging around and not doing much, until the last chapter, when suddenly she seemed to have this really interesting personality. The two female teachers both played important roles, and yet were oddly lacking in character development or screen time, considering. I wish there had been more time spent on them.
Ultimately, however, the hits massively outweigh the misses. This is a great manga for anyone who likes dramatic slice of life with a little romance.
This story is slice of life and seinen/josei, not shonen. It is very far from being shonen. It's silly to have categorised it as such. It's simply erroneously categorised here on MAL.
The characters don't do "silly" shonen-ish things, there is nothing heroic, outstanding or whatever of the sort about anything in this story. The story is just a story about a few people whose lives intertwined and how they go on about those daily lives as such.
This was a weird manga. For the stuff that matters to me, and I don't really think there was anything else, it is oh so very realistic. Everything was
down to earth, without a single thing that shaked the sync at which I was in with the story.
Out of all the characters, Tohno Touko etched herself the most in my mind, but I am happy to feel that by saying that I am doing somewhat of an injustice for Hirose and Kusakabe. Even Kayo, even all the rest. But yea, the two of them were wonderfull in different ways.
I could describe this manga satisfactory enough with a single word: "Gentle".
Everything that went on was, just girls, young ones, on the verge of adulthood, living their lives, growing up. I even grew to appreciate the male lead, Tomonaga, and very much so his techer-friend-colleague.
Some characters were somewhat minor in the story, but they had their role, and were not suddenly dead by the time it was over. Those characters too are realistic. Some people in life aren't there all the time, but they are sometimes and they are the people we know and are friends with. That's what I mean. The minor characters are consistently existent, and were not single-use tools. Just like in real life.
Now, as regarding the thing that stuck with me intensively for days back when I had just read this, and that I can get in the mindset of back easily through a song;
There's a music album that I'd been listening to as I was reading the story. Ended up as the music I think Tohno likes. In particular, that she walked outside alone while listening to this song , that she liked to listen to this song as she walked alone outside without a place to go to.
Just wandering alone like a hidden gem that can't shine..
The song (【東方ボーカル】 「モノクロ インザナイト (CYTOKINE remix)」) was beautiful to me, but through Tohno's character the beauty of it developed in to strong melancholy. Whenever I listen to the song now, images of Tohno wandering the streets, alone and doing her best to stay strong, flow through my mind.
Oh how it was seemingly happy, before I started hearing the notes of uncertainty and concern, even fear and tears, the interpretation of which was brought to me by Tohno.
Tohno Touko is amazing to me, I love her.
Kusakabe and Hirose are angels.
I have a special feeling about the both of them, both different from the other though. Hirose is gentle in one way, and Kusakabe is gentle in another way. It's a 10/10 manga for me, I love it because of how gentle and beautiful the story is, without being unrealastic. Like, such beauty, such gentle beauty (that the whole story is), I can beleive to be real. It's nice to have that feel. Helps me live by helping me believe I'll perhaps meet such people one day, but yea; It's undoubtedly far too late for me to find such bliss.
Also, I am not stuck on describing the story as gentle because of its title. I firmly believe I'd have described it the same way had the title been something entirely different.
The art is beautiful, the characters are love, the story is realistic, and I was looking forward to reading the story rather instead of feeling burdened with the obligation to read it.
10 all around.
Aditionay, I was listening to an album during the days that I was reading this. Now some songs from that album are locked in my mind as the songs that Tohno was listening to as she was wandering alone outside.
the story of a prodigy student who became a teacher not quite an uncommon plot, yet this manga seems to reinforce or satisfy the fantasy of teacher/student relationship. This was not the quite plot that I expected, yet it wasn't really a surprise factor as it seems to drive in this direction very early in the story. Essentially 3 main characters, Tomonaga, Haruka, and Aoi are all seemingly related to the scheme of the plot, but there is quite obviously a focus on the relationship between Aoi and Tomanaga, with Haruka as a girl with hopeless, unrequited feelings for her teacher. We later
find out that Aoi is a genius, similarly to Tomanaga and this further drives their relationship into boundaries that not even Tomanaga wanted to indulge in as they both try to uncover the mathematical concept that explains the world in all its beauties. While there is a emphasis on physics and mathematics, one can enjoy the story without really acknowledging it, which is convenient i guess. As mentioned before, this story seems to satisfy a rather particular niche, yet lacks motivation for progression besides a the love relationship. Strange due to the fact that the main character seems to discourage such relationships in general.
It's good, not extremely unique but satisfying for a lack of a better word.
While there are other characters in Aoi's friend group, some that reinforce the teacher/student relationship and others that are completely unrelated to the plot. I might've missed something, but the general sense of some of the characters seemed to be very vague in terms of presence or relation to the story. Tomanaga and Aoi are explicitly the main characters, and while the story tries to intertwine Haruka into the plot by convenience, she merely seems to represent the rom/com (with a lack of com) and is left in the dust. This could be seen as realistic and bitter turn of events, but i honestly ask the question; what's the point? Haruka's experience kickstarts the story and puts her in the spotlight in the beginning, but later on her presence dwindles and her pursuits for love seem so hopeless, i can't help but feel pity. Tomanaga lacks a solid background besides the fact that he was a genius kid while Aoi's experiences are more developed, and these two are completely cut off from the rest of the world while working together in their lab. This directly relates to the relative beauty of the world in the eyes of others, and it becomes clear that my views differ from Tomanaga's or Aoi's. Probably why Tomanaga seemed like such a spineless individual that lacked anything I could empathize with.
Enjoyment / Overall: 6
In conclusion, this manga was a fine time-spender and a 6 seems to fit my experiences with it fairly well. Not exactly my cup of tea, but similarly to the beauties of this world, thats relative to the individual.
Quite frankly, this series was a huge let-down, right from the start. It is unfathomable to me how a series without any semblance of substance such as Yasashii Sekai no Tsukurikata can get away with any of the praise found in the review section below. At best, this series is painfully average, with heavy-handed attempts at being dramatic or introspective.
If you’re looking for a show with purpose, this is not it. The cast of characters are all bland and severely archetypal, resorting into a stereotypical harem environment filled with all its usual tropes and clichés. The pacing of the narrative was a
mess, with certain characters falling in love with our protagonist without much reason or motivation. In fact, everything that seems to happen in this manga is aimless. The main character is passive, forcing the plot to take a nosedive into the everyday happenings of the school. The cast of characters all seem like cardboard cutouts of one another. Many of their personalities are so similar it becomes not only difficult to care about any of them, but hard to distinguish them as well.
The artwork is by in large average with a few specks of beautiful panels here and there. None of the panels in this manga will blow you away with beauty or effort, but they get the job done. A lot of the environmental panels look like the absolute minimum required to draw. The strength of the mangaka seems to be in drawing close-ups of faces.
In all, this Manga does not provide anything new or insightful to its readers and is highly undeserving of any of the praise seen in some of these reviews. If you’re looking for an average romance series, there are many better series to choose from.