The class president has a little secret she's keeping from everyone in her high school. As President of the Student Council, the overachieving feminist Misaki really socks it to the guys in an attempt to make the former all-boys' school attract a more female student body. But what will she do when the most awesome boy in class finds out Misaki's part-time job is in a maid café?! It's love at first fight in this shoujo romantic comedy—with a whole new look at the battle between the genres!
Kaichou wa Maid-sama! won the 31st Hakusensha Athena Newcomers' Awards in 2006 and received a drama CD adaptation.
The manga was first published in English by Tokyopop as Maid Sama! with 8 volumes released from April 7, 2009 to March 1, 2011 before publication was discontinued. VIZ Media re-licensed the series under the Shojo Beat imprint; the volumes have been published in 2-in-1 omnibuses since August 4, 2015. The series has also been published in Spanish by Ivrea since September 2015 and in Polish by Japonica Polonica Fantastica since November 2013.
Kaichou wa Maid-sama! is a shoujo manga, but it's not a very original one. The story, and the situations, have been used and reused in countless other stories. So, if you're looking for something with a lot of depth, or a lot of action, or just something a little different, this ISN'T the manga for you. However, if you want a cute story to pass the time, or are in love with shoujo, then you will probably enjoy this.
STORY - As I said, this is just another shoujo. Nothing is really special about the story, but, unlike some others, it isn't totally abominable. It's cute, generic, not very fast-paced, but quite enjoyable.
ART- Usually, when i start off with a manga, the art is... not so great. The mangaka's skills get better and better as time goes by. But, with Kaichou, even though it seems to be the mangaka's first work, the art is quite nice. There is quite a bit of chibiness and face-faulting in this manga, and I think it was portrayed quite nicely with just enough humour. The cases when the characters are being serious are quite nice as well. One thing I especially like about the art is how the male lead is portrayed. His chibis make me giggle (they're just too cute and appriate), but it's his serious face that I like most. When he smiles, his eyebrows are raised, making it seem like a mocking smile, which fits his personality. Then, on the rare occasion or two when he smiles without raised eyebrows, he seems all the more sincere and easy to fall for. I don't know if this was done on purpose or not, but it's just something I picked up on. The reason I give the art a nine and not a ten is because it's not always consistent. The art focuses mostly on people, not scenery or anything like that, and I sometimes notice a weird-looking eye or hand. But it's such a small thing, not worth taking out more than one point.
CHARACTER - This, I feel, is what the manga offers that makes it special. There are two main characters, a girl and a guy. The male lead is very likeable, very funny, and very nice, but he IS a touch shoujo-ish. He just seems too perfect for real life, as likeable as he is. So, even though he's a good character, he kind of generic, and not very special. I DO like his 'wtf' attitude, and I'm sure you will too, so he's a def. win! The FEMALE lead on the other hand is... wow. Okay, so you know how anime/manga girls are almost ALWAYS annoying? Like, how they just let themselves be protected by their guys, get all flustered around the ones they like, how their "assertiveness" is more "bitchiness" than assertiveness, how they want a boyfriend oh-so-badly, etc, etc? This heroine is SO not like that. She is assertive, to be sure, and sometimes puts a toe on the line of bitchiness, but she does try to imrpove her character, which I think is quite nice. But the thing that gets me about her is how NOT annoying she is. In fact, she makes me laugh quite a lot with her thoughts about the male lead, and that gives her bonus points. She's strong, and she protects herself, but she's also not bitchy. She's really great! And I hate most female characters, but the way... she's like, the second out of all the anime and manga I've seen/read that I actually like.
So, the two main characters really stand out here, and I like them a lot. The one thing that I'd like to see ore of is better backup characters. The other girls in the manga seem to be typically annoyingly sweet, and the other boys seem to be typically annoyingly weird/disgusting/b*stardish. But, it's okay, since the mangaks doesn't give them too much of a spotlight.
ENJOYMENT - As I already said, this is just another shoujo. Although it has certain redeeming features, like its art and characters, it is stil just another shoujo. If you like these sort of cute reads, like me, then you will definitely enjoy it. If you're looking for something more fast-paced, I would advise you to look elsewehere. I, personally, enjoyed it very much. It had moments that made me laugh out loud, smile knowingly, squeal, and pity the characters. That's what we're all looking for, right?
OVERALL - A cute manga. Story is merely ordinary which lowers its overall mark, but the art and characters really stand out, and I enjoyed it quite a bit. So, it gets an 8 - very good. :)read more
Kaichou wa Maid-sama is my guilty pleasure—specifically, Usui. -- how’s that for a review opening? Too soon?
As many other reviews have already mentioned, the premise of this manga is cliché. I’ll admit that. It is. A “tough” girl actually works at a girly place and *gasp* of course she just HAS to be discovered by the hottest guy at school. She has to keep it a secret, and of course, with secrets, there’s blackmail. There are plenty of cliché situations in this manga but Maid Sama approaches these clichés really well and in ways that kept me interested. I never really rolled my eyes or got bored with what was happening.
I happen to like Hiro Fujiwara’s style of drawing. The characters are attractive and are distinguishable from one another. The backgrounds are drawn nicely too and some panels where Usui is giving you a smoldering look gets you squealing most of the time. Scratch that. ALL THE TIME.
Alright, now it’s appropriate to say it: Usui is my guilty pleasure. No matter how Gary Stu he is, no matter how copy and paste he might be, no matter how real guys might scoff at him, Usui Takumi is perfection in the form of a manga character. I’ve read about a thousand characters like Usui, so why? Why is he the epitome of perfection out of all the other guys? I HATE Gary Stus, but I LOVE Usui! The man could be picking his nose and scratching his balls and I’d still swoon for him! SOMEONE ANSWER ME! WHY?!
It’s a mystery. Usui’s a mystery. Mysterious guys are hot. Usui’s hot. Conclusion: Usui Takumi.
…(In the process of picking up my brain pieces and putting them back together)
Alright, let’s move onto the main character: Misaki. Ultimately, Misaki is the reason why I love this manga and she’s probably the only thing that’s not cliché in this whole story (besides her acting like a tsudere occasionally in front of Usui). But that’s what makes this manga so durable. Misaki is what holds it together. What I love about her is that her personality never really changes, but she does indeed get character development.
I’ve read reviews where people are hating on Misaki for being a man-hater and honestly, her attitude sort of turned me off from reading as well. But I gave it a chance because at least she wasn’t a typical stupid shoujo heroine. And boy am I glad I continued. Misaki gradually changes for the better, but she still maintains her tough and hardworking personality. And the entrance of THE PERFECTION OF USUI doesn’t turn her into a fumbling, bumbling, constantly-blushing idiot! In practically every cliché shoujo, the heroine automatically becomes someone entirely different in the presence of the hot guy, but Misaki keeps her composure and only loses it when Usui does the smolder, and who wouldn’t?
Misaki’s a girl, she’s human too y’know.
But maybe this answers my question as to why I love Usui’s character—probably because he has Misaki as his partner and they bring out the best in each other.
As for the other characters in this manga, a few of them are for comic relief (idiot trio pops to mind), but I’m never bored when they appear so I appreciate their presence.
(In replacement of Enjoyment…) Romance: 9
The interactions between Misaki and Usui are surprisingly not cheesy. I don’t really remember cringing, but I definitely remember squealing and fanning myself. I’m a fan girl, what’d you expect? Anyway, speaking of fan, there’s a good amount of fan service in Maid-sama. And what I mean by fan service isn’t ass and tits, but Usui and Misaki playing the pocky game and other “that shouldn’t be sexy, but it is” moments.
Misaki and Usui not only make a sexy couple, but a badass couple as well. The two of them can hold their own individually, but when they’re together, let’s just say anyone who messes with them better watch out for any glass shards.
And though I mentioned that Misaki sometimes acted like a tsundere, it’s never extreme and it doesn’t happen so often that it becomes annoying. She also eventually begins to accept her feelings for Usui, which in this case, is something I can respect of Misaki, considering she never previously cared about romance and was a man-hater. And no this doesn’t happen in a matter of chapters. The romance actually takes its time to develop, which I enjoyed—especially when you could see the sparks igniting between them and their chemistry working together.
I know 100% that if Misaki had been replaced by a meek shoujo heroine who wasn’t as unaffected by Usui, I would’ve probably dropped the series long ago and Usui wouldn’t my guilty pleasure. The fact that Misaki is slightly unaffected by his charms only adds to the romance and their development.
I wouldn’t call this a slow romance, but it is paced appropriately.
In the end, Kaichou wa Maid-sama is full of clichés, but it’s as if Fujiwara knew our limits and backed off just before it got too annoying. How she does it, I don’t know, but she’s good at it. Maid-sama (and Usui) to this day remains a guilty pleasure of mine, full of its clichés and perfection. And I love it.read more
Kaichou wa Maid-sama is a shoujo manga with a bit of attitude and a pair of interesting main characters. It isn't entirely original, unique or different from other shoujo already fleshed out for audiences to read about but what it does do is make you laugh, make you smile and even think that maybe some hot guys could be aliens.
Story: 7 out of 10
I'm not going to lie here, the story isn't very original once you get past some key elements. Basically, you follow the life and adventures of Misaki, who is currently the "Iron Fisted" President of her now co-ed high school. With the majority of the students still male, she took it upon herself to throw down the ballot and make some changes for the female populace and herself. The thing is, she has a secret that she can't exactly tell the world; she works in a maid cafe to earn money for her family, consisting of her sister and her mother. Ironically (and rather cliche), there's this really hot, mysterious and rather popular guy named Usui who notices the President and accidently finds out her secret. And thus, the hilarity, the annoyance, and the fun times ensue.
So basically, what you have is an interesting concept but with cliched aspects that really don't separate it from most shoujo manga (the sexual tension, putting up a front with people, being annoyed but loved by a hot guy etc). It's not done badly though so it's enjoyable but if you're looking for something original and different, you won't find much of an edge with Maid-sama.
Art: 8 out of 10
The artwork is decent. If you compare the old artwork in the first chapters to the latest chapters, there is a big difference in the artwork. It's not crappy in the beginning but it doesn't look as appealing as it does later on. Personally, I think the artwork is one of the strongest points of the manga and the mangaka does a great job of making the characters attractive and nice-looking. Usui is definitely that sexy guy that most can see why girls love him and Misaki, though brash and rough, is a pretty woman.
Characters: 8 out of 10
Mainly, it's the main characters that give this story its strength. You have Misaki, who is not your typically weak-willed, naive and annoying heroine. She is a bit naive in some aspects but still, her character is fresh and nice. She is really funny person, a strong woman and a independent lady (which, no offense to a lot of shoujo women, is a good change of pace). Then you have her chip on the shoulder, Usui. He's smart, athletic, sexy, enticing, and overall, like the perfect smartass. He seems perfect, which is kind of cliche with most mangas but still, he's just enjoyable as a character (and did I mention, really sexy?).
As for the other characters, you have the students of Misaki's school, student council members and a rather busty teacher who comes later on as well as the Maid Cafe workers who are a collective bunch of cliches. They are cute but not really original. Though, I'm not going to lie, I do have a soft spot for one of the characters (his name escapes me) who wears glasses and is shy. But anyway, it's not unique or original but it makes the story cute.
Enjoyment: 7.5 (8) out of 10
Honestly, this manga isn't very original as I've said but it's still enjoyable. The main issue I have though is that frustrating element of shoujo manga where the main couple has way too much sexual tension and won't get together. I won't spoil the series for anyone but at a certain point, I start to think "Wow...so you two are together...aren't together?" I mean, it's like real life I suppose but still, it's a bit frustrating, enticing but kind of annoying all the same. But overall, it's pretty enjoyable.
Overall: 8 out of 10
So basically, Kaichou wa Maid-sama is your typical but slightly unique shoujo manga that makes you laugh, makes itself look cute and has some nice artwork. Besides that, it's not original but has an interesting lead and sexy suitor/potential partner so overall, I'd say if you want to read a shoujo manga with a slight difference from most, go read this one. Otherwise, if you want something gripping, different, unique and ground-breaking, I'd keep to steppin. read more
I'd heard a lot about this series and decided to give it a shot. I dropped it after the first chapter because I couldn't stand to read any more. The story was horribly cliché and I could already see how it would end: hot-headed (and highly obnoxious, in my opinion), man-hating female lead has her less-than-feministic occupation found out by her hot classmate who she will later fall in love with.
Don't get me wrong. I have nothing against a female lead with an attitude or who's different from your usual, perfect Mary-Sue lead, but I couldn't stand this girl because of all her clichéd characteristics (she's poor. How many times have we seen that?) and her treatment of the male population of the school. She wanted equal treatment for the girls and decided to treat the males unfairly for whatever reason.
I only advise you read this if you're into the whole clichéd romance series about a poor man-hater and an attractive, rich male. Otherwise, I don't think you'll enjoy this.read more
Kaichou wa Maid-Sama has more to offer than cute girls in costumes. It contains themes of loyalty, hubris, rivalries and that people are more than the front they present. All while managing to put a smile on the face of viewers.