Unrequited love is a tragic circumstance with no simple resolution. It comes in many forms, yet each one shares the same debilitating feeling of inconceivable longing.
Hanabi Yasuraoka and Mugi Awaya are two high school students who appear to have the ideal relationship. They are the envy of their classmates, and it is easy to portray them as the classic example of high school sweethearts. Unbeknownst to friends and family, however, there is a side to their love veiled by hidden passions: their true affections lie elsewhere, and they use each other to physically sate their unreciprocated feelings.
Hanabi is in love with Narumi Kanai, her new homeroom teacher who is also her childhood friend. Mugi is in love with Akane Minagawa, who used to be his tutor when he was younger. Now teachers at the same school, Kanai and Minagawa begin to show an interest in one another. As a result, Mugi and Hanabi find solace in each other as victims of the same pain.
With little hope of their feelings being realized, these two students face a challenging predicament: cope with and move on from their lust, or become further entangled in their web of unrequited love.
I want to like Kuzu No Honkai, I really do. But I just can't, and here's why.
First and foremost I'd like to praise the superficial, the art. I adore Yokoyari Mengo's art, it's very well done. Each of the character's design feel unique and somehow colorful. Mengo's greatest achievement in Kuzu No Honkai was definitely her art. This is the only aspect of the manga I have very concrete positive feelings for.
Next the character, this is a double edged blade. It was simultaneously good and bad. Characters felt like they could be real people, they were relatable and all but one felt competent.
Almost all of us can relate to loving someone who won't love us. And Mugi and Hanabi's sexual solace in each other while unhealthy, is understandable. On the other hand a lot of their actions and emotions feel completely unjustified and frankly illogical. Almost childish. Specifically Kanai's (and Mugi's) love for Akane. It makes absolutely zero sense. What does he love about her? Think about it. Everything he knows about her is total bullshit. The only thing he knows for sure, is that she's a pretty face. Why would he willingly commit to being a cuckold? "To make her happy". That's not an answer, why does he want to make her happy, why does he love her. He doesn't know enough about her to love her. It's childish. It's one thing to love someone despite their faults, but to love someone with seemingly no redeeming qualities is just ridiculous. Either that or he's a masochist who want's to be cheated on. In which case, whatever. I'm not going to argue with the disturbing fetish that is netorare.
Another issue with the character in this story is that the characters has this nasty little regression habit. They'd make a little progress, show a sign of moving on only to hit a wall, give up, have a little emotionless sex and go back to a world of self pity. I feel that no one in this manga had any meaningful character development. I feel that given the opportunity, Mugi, Ecchan, or Hanabi, would immediately hop into the arm's of their first love.
Almost none of the characters were likable. Yea you could empathize with them, which is important and good. But empathy means jack shit if you don't like them. Hanabi constantly act's like a victim. Always giving into her surroundings and scarcely making a choice for herself. Mugi is a delusional idiot who believes his first love is infallible. Akane doesn't need anything said about her. She's just a sociopath. And Kanai is just a man child. Ecchan was a good attempt, but had this nasty habit of taking advantage of her love, leading me to believe she more infatuated than inlove. And Moca, my favorite, just fell in love with an idea, the idea of a prince and princess. She's almost a reverse of Kanai and Akane, except Mugi isn't nearly an awful person as Akane.
Finally the story, Kuzu No Honkai's great short coming. I have two things to say about the story. First and foremost, it is my belief that a story is only as good as it's ending. And Kuzu No Honkai's ending was frankly shit. It end with a sociopath marrying a manchild who claims to love her when he knows nothing about her, and our two main characters who actually move on (which is good) just deciding "this person who helped me through the darkest time of my life to date, who I probably love, lets just completely cut them out of my life". People are saying this is a fitting and lovely ending. I think it's illogical and emotionally regressive.
Second, it feels like this story never had a clear ending in sight. Any good story teller knows two things when they begin to write a story. It's beginning, and it's ending. Kuzu No Honkai felt like it knew's it's beginning, but had no damn idea what the hell was going to happen after that. It just threw side characters at us and the "resolved" the story. What do I mean? It felt like Ecchan, and Moca were just there to kill time and attempt to add some more sympathetic characters.
Kuzu No Honkai never had the intention of making anyone happy. It simply expressed the fact that there is misery in the world and that we have to deal with it. Kuzu No Honkai had no intention of creating any enjoyment and I certainly didn't find any.
"It's not like it would be the end of this world if someone refused me." - Yasuraoka, Hanabi
Kuzu no Honkai (Scum's Wish) is doubtlessly living up to it's name by portaying how fragile humans are when it comes to temptations and how susceptible we are with negative emotions. Through this series, expect that everything will refuse fall in place. Indubitably manga is unique on it own way of showing us what love really is. Since it shows what really happens when we are broken and in need of someone that to fill out that missing part.
The story revolves with Hanabi Yasuraoka and Mugi Awaya that
are high school students who are well known and adored by co-students, but they are in-love with someone whom they couldn't be with. As they share the same pain they have decided to be couple (a fake one), for others to see and fulfill each others sexual and emotional urges.
Love, betrayal and lust are the things you are about to unfold as you progress with the story. I could say that the Scum's Wish is totally unpredictable and enjoyable for the individuals whole likes emotional roller-coaster ride. If your heart is already broken, thus what's breaking it a few more times going to do?
Well written and absolutely beautiful. It might be a depressing and heart-wrenching manga, but I could say that I am utterly satisfied with it's ending.
Overall, I would give 9 wishes out of 10 for Kuzu no Honkai.
Kuzu no Honkai is the only manga I've completed with a fast pace. This is also the first revie that I'm going to publish for a Manga here in MAL because I cannot keep myself from shading my thoughts because this fucking manga has scarred me big time.
I love them and I hate them. I love Mugi and Hanabi and I just fucking shipped them throughout the whole time I was reading this Manga. I'll continue on shipping them till the day I return to dust but at the same time I also hated them occasionally for being so
fucked up and for being so stupid. I also hated Akane, that fucking slut. But when it came to the last chapters of the manga, I started to hate myself as well because I slowly sympathized her and came to "understand" her but I still feel conflicted about it but I just can't help it and the fact that Hanabi also said; Her confidence is flawless and I kind of want to have that typenof confidence too.
The rest of the characters were also far from being just mediocre side characters. Even they have fucked up mentalities and I think that's what makes this manga relatable and realistic because everyone of us is fucked up too. *Sobs*
The art is a fucking trap. At first it gives you the false impression of a Shoujo manga. Well Surprise MF! You could also prob feel turned on with all the bed scenes and shit but trust me it only lasts until you get to the middle because when you get there, no matter how hot the bed scenes are, all you're going to be able to say is "WTF R YOU GUYS DOING".
Like I said, at the end of every chapter you'll always have that WTF reaction but there's this certain urge inside you that wants to dig in deeper as the story progresses and you're gonna realize the author and her characters are slowly fucking up you brain but its probably too late to back out now so instead you embrace reading this sinful manga.
Overall its a 10. Even if the ending wasn't the conclusion I wanted it was what Mugi, Hanabi and I needed. Yes, I am now part of it. I can't help it. It's haunted me ever since.
Read it. Just read it. Stop looking at those reviews with a 7 below rating. Trust me. Let's all get fucked up by a fucking manga.
A fruitless love. A painful love. A one-sided love. Is that really such a wonderful thing?
It's all too common throughout the romance genre to follow the journey of an unrequited love. These stories are light hearted in nature and sparkling with color as characters fantasize about confessing to their unobtainable goal. What rarely gets explored is the emotional toll that weighs on the soul of a person who rests their hopes on the choices of another adolescent. To not be able to share yourself with the one you desire most in this world, even worse watch them grow closer to someone else, is an excruciating
ordeal. One that can lead you to make terrible choices out of utter desperation and that is what Kuzu no Honkai attempts to depict in gritty detail - the darkness that can develop from an unrequited love situation and the depths one is willing to go to in order to fill that void in their heart.
In this story we encounter two seventeen year olds named Mugi and Hanabi who attempt to quell the pain from their own unrequited loves by using one another as substitutes, pretending as though the other is the one that they truly love in order to satisfy their raging desires. We witness the consequences they face from beginning such a disingenuous relationship and how it impacts the people around them for the worse.
For adolescents in a school life setting, our two main characters are unusually mature. They obviously make their fair share of mistakes throughout as any teenager would, but the way that they describe events that happen before them, rationalizing their ever changing feelings by referencing modern psychology and embracing their sexual proclivities make them appear as though they're older than they actually are. Maturity is a prevalent theme as our lead characters look to progress themselves in order to make the people that they love, both adults in their early 20's, look their way. They each have childhood friends who are in love with them and are understandably upset over the suspicious relationship that they share which serves as the root of much drama in this story. Even they begin to change drastically as the plot progresses. Character progression is a refreshing strong-point for this manga as everyone begins to develop before your eyes with the turn of each page leading into the next chapter. Kuzu no Honkai is also told from a variety of different perspectives with each central character getting an opportunity to describe the events through their own point of view, helping to keep the story from ever feeling repetitive or stale.
The art in this manga does a great job of depicting the emotional state of the characters especially during intimacy scenes. Despite the lewd premise however, this is not a very explicit manga as there's much more focus on the reasoning behind why the characters act upon their impulses, rather than the impulse itself.
Given the current events thus far its safe to say what this manga sets out to accomplish as intended by the author: Kuzu no Honkai is designed to make you feel. To evoke a reaction out of the reader that will range anywhere from lukewarm sadness to berserk anger due to the many painful decisions that these characters you grow accustomed to make. It can be quite the vexing read for many who are used to more predictable happy romantic outcomes but a strong quality of any work of literature is the ability to create a rise out of the reader. That was me as I sped through this manga upon discovery which compelled me to compose my thoughts into a review. Hopefully that is what will inspire you to continue on forth with this manga and witness the most oft ignored aspect of love that is human desperation and desperately sought after compensation for a broken heart.