Kouichi has looked forward to becoming a high schooler for one reason: to help continue his grandfather's coffee shop. But on the first day of school, a strange girl wearing an eerie mask tells him that she has come to take his life. She tells him that the heart beating within his chest is her own, and that she is an alien invader who has come to take over the world.
Lonely Alien (or Hitoribocchi no Chikyuu Shinryaku) is a manga that I thoroughly enjoyed. Whereas some manga readers would just skim over dialogue (especially long ones) I'd recommend gathering your willpower and read as dialogues and narratives contain a deep lore and good characterization. The art isn't that good, but the story and the characters cover for it.
Story - 8
Hitoribocchi no Chikyuu Shinryaku starts as exactly what its synopsis says. That said, it doesn't only tackle that but also tackles many other things. We could say that it's a "Slice of Life" manga while also saying that it's also an "Action" manga.
It starts out slow,
decent, normal. Slowly placing you in Hirose Kouichi's steps. We follow him as he interacts with Nozomi and as well as any other characters that eventually appears come a few more chapters.
While the manga starts in a slice-of-life manner, it slowly grows into something... more unique. Rather, it reminded me a lot of Satoshi Mizukani's work, especially Lucifer and the Biscuit Circle, not through its manner of plot (in fact, both are
truly different in their own ways) but through the manner of its execution.
Dialogue within this manga is overly heavy, but is a main component of the enjoyment factor. The lore is particularly interesting, but not one of the best things in the manga. What I enjoyed the most within this, are the characters.
Character - 8
The characters in this manga are quite unique. Each has their own characteristic trait that stands out and their interactions with one another develop quite slowly. In fact, since the story focuses on Kouichi so much, other character relationships weren't overly blatant, unless you're paying attention to what is actually happening in each chapter.
The antagonists (yes there are antagonists) aren't just cardboard cutouts either. Similar to the main characters, both have their own reasons and goals that intertwine with other characters' reasons and goals. Although, that only serves for those that are key components to the plot.
This manga has also seen many side characters pass by. Those characters, having only a purpose in developing the main character's relationship with each other. Remember, though, the story focuses on Kouichi's point of view and that small thing doesn't really need much thinking on.
Art - 6
Contrasted by its great characterization and story, Hitoribocchi has a semi-decent art. The manga doesn't really have an eye-catching one, at first, (I must admit that the coloring is superb.) and there are problems here and there.
Sometimes character expression wasn't really expressed and character's faces could even be creepy. For example, I couldn't tell if one character was using their power or not, or if this other character is even alive inside.
Clothing styles for some characters doesn't change at all, but they do have variety in them. In fact, there's this character in the manga that is either wearing a dress or a skirt, but never pants.
That aside, character design is pretty decent and won't really get to you unless you focus more on the art style.