2nd-year middle school student Ayumu Kurihara changes classes and is seated next to the beautiful but strange Misuzu Tsukishima who dislikes boys. Mizusu can't get close to other people, but after being moved by Ayumu's sweet, honest personality she begins to open up to her little by little. Ayumu too is captivated by the awkwardly delicate Mizusu and the two of them become close.
"I was drowning, in feelings I didn't know the name of."
Here we go again? NOPE. This is a warning for lovers of the yuri genre. This is not a story of how two girl friends (best friends?) become lovers and we get a sexy yuri scene at the end. This is a story... about FRIENDSHIP.
As most western fans know, both the yuri and shoujo ai genres deal with love between women, the former focusing on the sexual aspect while the later focuses on the emotional aspect of it. And so we come into the genre with full expectations that they become lovers at some point.
Yet one must realize that there are many different kinds of love and it is not limited to the passionate kind of love between lovers.
Alright that was a bit heavy for my liking and so we shall start this review with the art. Beautiful. I was never a fan of the shoujo genre but one thing that no one can deny is that most shoujo mangas are (or at least attempt to be) beautiful due to an art style which can only be described as poetic.
Disclaimer: If you were allergic to Clannad's "big eyes" you will disagree with me.
Although the art was great, the essence of this manga is inevitably the two main characters: Kurihara Ayumu, a very social, well liked person and overall very popular with the girls in her school and Tsukishima Misuzu, an anti-social short tempered person who despite all that is very popular among the boys due to her beauty. At first glance, it seems that the mangaka has fallen into the same trap that many writers of the yuri/shoujo ai fell into; that of creating a manly character and a more feminine character. At some points, short haired Ayumu is made to look like a guy along with some not so subtle hints from her friends while Misuzu reveals her fragile feminine side.
Yet as the story progresses we notice that this isn't a story about two lovers. Rather, it is a story about how two friends support each other with their varying strengths and weaknesses to break free from the chains of their past.
Yes, looking at it again, there is nothing especially ground-breaking in this manga and it is full of cliche themes, yet it remains enjoyable nonetheless due in no small part to the beautiful art.
*** This review is for the first season of "Blue Friend" ***
A story that involves with friendship, love and trust. Without trust, it is impossible to become friends with others. And without friendship, it is very difficult to build a relationship that goes beyond it.
I actually re-read "Blue Friend" twice. The first time I read it which was a year ago, I just thought it was an average shoujo ai story about two girls because chapter 8: After Days wasn't out yet. When I finally came back to reading this story again, it brought back memories and I was really touched by chapter
8 that I actually cried. I didn't give a 10 because there were some parts that felt a bit repetitive but overall it's a meaningful story.
I really liked the artwork. I enjoyed looking at Misuzu's character appearance because I do agree that she is beautifully drawn. I also liked when Ayumu's hair grew longer in the latest chapter, it makes her more feminine. There's really nothing more to say other than this is my type of artwork that I find pleasure looking at.
It is not the easiest story to understand the characters at first, but it gradually becomes clearer as the story progresses. There is one character which gave me the question marks at times, she is Azuma. I knew she wasn't a bad person from the start since she is trying to help Ayumu & Misuzu. But I think the way she expresses herself makes the audience either question her or dislike her. Therefore I was uncertain what her intention was. Otherwise, I liked both Ayumu & Misuzu.
Well reading my opinions from above, I'm sure it's obvious that I enjoyed the manga. I don't usually re-read any manga more than once. So "Blue Friend" is really something that made me go for it.
I would definitely recommend this to anyone whether they are into shoujo ai or not. This manga is not only focused on the romance love, but also the true love of friendship. Supporting someone you care for without being influenced by others is not an easy thing to do. The moral behind this story is that we shouldn't judge a book by its cover.
On the side note, I recommend Eban Fumi (author)'s other stories. I read "Blue Friend - 2nd Season" and it's really good. It is a completely different story from this one with different characters. And I find the moral behind that one very meaningful as well. So please remember to check it out!!
There is little to write about this manga. All I can really say is that this is definately one of the best manga I have read. The only complaint I have is that it was too short, but hopefully the second season will make up for it.
As far as the plot goes, it was short and sweet, well not exactly sweet and straight to the point most of the time. The characters are well developed and lovable (in my opinion). The art was nice and the character designs were very good. Overall I really enjoy this manga and can not wait
for the last chapter to be translated. This is definately an amazing story overlooked my many because it is yuri.