I don't usually write reviews, but I thought I would for this. The story is not particularly original centering on a blackmail master-slave relationship that turns into something more. Very cliche in the shojo manga industry. Unrealistically stereotypical characters abounded
The thing that really bothered me was the main character being molested on several occasions, and almost gang-raped by her boyfriend's clique (on his orders) and not contacting any authorities or anything (and staying friends with these people). It was very disturbing that the main character was such a dolt- not a very good self-image for young girls who read this. She also definately chose the wrong guy to fall in love with-her main crush was a total jerk and treated her with nothing but disrespect and forced her to choose between him and everything else she loved on several occasions (while on other occasions verbally, physically or borderline sexually abusing her). She went along with his increasingly absurd demands even though his only goal seemed to be to sleep with her (on a couple occasions some semblance of humanity on his part showed through but these were usually a guise to get to his ultimate goal). The side story romance between the main character's sister and her childhood guy-friend was more interesting and realistic than the main story. Also, I disapproved of her ultimate guy-choice at the end. In conclusion, this is a poorly written review for a poorly written manga.read more
I like the whole rich guy falls for not-so-rich girl story but in this case the rich guy has moments of total asshole-ness that makes no sense and the girl is just an absolute doormat who is a shame to all womankind so you empathize with neither. I don't suggest reading this manga if you don't like guys who are abusive and girls who are unassertive and nonsensically accommodating (after being 'betrayed' she just continues being friends with them without a clear resolution first).
I get why people would understand Hatsumi falling for Ryouki at some point because he was there for her etc, but to me the negative aspects of how he treats her is just disgusting (Domyoji from Hana Yori Dango was spoiled too but Ryouki is no where near as redeemable -- but this may have to do with the fact that the storytelling of HYD is much better and unfolded through many more volumes). Hatsumi is just the typical shy female protagonist who forgives everything, stands up for barely anything, and has conviction in nothing (I really hope this changes in the end, but no strengthening of her personality has occurred in SEVEN whole volumes).
I'm finishing vol 7 right now and I want to just give up reading this manga but I only got a little over 4 more volumes. I think I'll stick it out because the drawing is pretty consistent and nice and there are really sweet tender moments in between all the absurdity and cliches.
To those who are thinking of reading this because of the one-girl-many-guys thing, read Hana Yori Dango, Vampire Knight, or Parfait Tic instead.read more
After picking up this manga, I thought the beginning was very interesting but as the story was unfolding, it took a long time to develop which was a little bit unnerving. Even though it was slow in progression, the plot twists did make me feel caught up in the story and was able to keep me reading until the very last chapter. If you like mystery, there's a little bit of that thrown in too. There's also very "adult" themes like sex in it but it does not take up more than 5% of the manga.
I liked this manga because it was very unique in its storyline. It used realistic aspects that parodied the dangers of romance [heartbreak, betrayal, etc.] and the importance of family. The climax of the plot was worth reading cause it was definitely something I did not expect. [When you begin to think that 'oh that's the story' and relax, you soon realize it ends up becoming a beginning to another twist]
I really also liked how Aihara Miki develops each character so you feel a strong attachment/emotion to them when 'its their time to shine' and you don't forget their importance afterwards if they don't come back for a few chapters. The art for it is really well done and the dialogue is good too.
It also delves into many issues that are very serious so it would be hard to understand the circumstances going on in the manga if the reader is not in high school yet.
What I didn't like was how the main character, Hatsumi, acts. [if you are really a feminist, then this might not be the right thing for you ^^;] This manga is particularly long and if you can deal with her constantly being confused by what she wants, having very little self-confidence, or acting submissive all the time, then maybe you can make it all the way to the end of the series. It was very annoying to deal with this aspect but it causes you to focus more on the guys in the storyline and their feelings/actions and the plot itself.
***Overall, if you can stand her, its a really good read. There will be moments that will make you mad, sad, disgusted or feel all warm and fuzzy inside. Although, I personally wasn't happy with the ending but maybe you might be. If you are looking for something with depth, then this is the manga for you. =]read more
Alright...First of all, who would you choose?
The asshole who made you his slave and is just generally a horrible person, the asshole who tried to rape you for revenge but, just for the record, it was a total misunderstanding and he's sorry, or the really nice and caring guy..... who just so happens to be your (NOT REALLY) brother.
Hatsumi made the wrong choice. She chose to stay in this situation.
Maybe it's a cultural difference... I mean, I get that women are generally not as respected as men, especially in Japan. But the main character of this manga is a total pushover. How did she fall for Ryoki in the first place? She admitted (even when she was supposedly in love with him) that she was afraid of him. But she never stands up for herself or fights back... she just lets everyone treat her like shit.
And the whole deal with her brother being in love with her, that is such a cop out in so many series. They're not REALLY related. So it's okay! But no. It is not. She grew up believing he was her brother, so he will remain her brother. If your brother confessed his love to you what would you do? YOU'D BE CREEPED-THE FUCK- OUT.
In all honesty, there was a part of me that ate this shit up. I wouldn't have finished it if I totally hated it. I wanted Ryoki to change or Hatsumi to grow some balls and punch him in the face. But in the end, neither or those things happened. Ryoki is still a disrespectful asshole, Hatsumi is still a dumb bitch and everyone is ok with that. Even her now celibate brother. I mean, really? Wtf.
I don't have much to say about Azusa... he has issues that he projects on to other people... and he's an asshole.
Hot Gimmick.... you're what makes me say "What the fuck, Japan?" (Along with many other, much worse, things)read more
This will be my first review. I chose Hot Gimmick because it's the least enjoyable manga I've read so I feel like it needs my critique the most.
I think some people might find my scoring a little harsh, but I think my ratings fairly illustrate my feelings toward this manga. There's a simple reason why I stuck with it all the way instead of adding it to my dropped list and it's because I'm not a quitter.
There isn't single scrap of originality to the story. Really the only good thing it has going for it is the perverse way the reader can't help but continue reading. It's just your basic love triangle (actually it's more like a reverse harem). By the end of the short series, you don't really get the feeling that the characters matured any and it definitely did not leave me wanting more. I was actually very happy to say good riddance because the plot development was pushing non-existent once I easily figured out all the predictable "twists".
The volume covers are misleading, in my opinion. When you look at the colored chapter images you get a completely different feeling than when you look at the sloppy, chicken-scratch art in the actual chapters. There are times when the art is stereotypical shoujo with big eyes and lots of sparkle (which is fine, I guess) but most of the time (and especially when the characters are shown from a profile view) the art is empty and the characters are ugly. I also hate when manga-ka get lazy and use photo manips for background images instead of drawing it, and manips are used far too often in Hot Gimmick.
The only thing keeping this from being a 3 or a 2 is Shinogu. Even he was lame, cheesy, and his ending was predictable and laughable, but at least he was likable throughout the entire series. I would say my biggest problem with characterizations would be Hatsumi and Ryoki's relationship with each other. *Possible spoilers*
Ryoki was constantly mentally, physically, and sexually abusive to Hatsumi. Hatsumi had the lowest sense of self-worth out of any character I've ever read about. She was a terrible shoujo heroine and I was kind of rooting for her to suffer because anyone that dumb deserves it. I hated Ryoki. Everything about him was disgusting and cruel, which means I hated Hatsumi even more. Weak-willed protagonists are my least favorite things. They were terrible characters.
I'm being generous. And the only reason it's this high is because I had some kind of weird, morbid fascination that allowed me to finish the series in a relatively short amount of time (a couple of days) rather than tortuously dragging it out.
I would not recommend this manga to anyone unless you like weak-willed female protagonists who passively tolerate abuse. read more
Normally, I don't write any reviews. But this manga just needs another review, and I do not mean that in a positive way.
Well, like you read above, this is a story about a girl that is forced to be a (sex)slave by a rich guy, because otherwise he exposes the secret of her sister being a slutty girl. That would mean a scorned repuation for this family, living in the same apartment block. Apparently the clean reputation of het family is more important to her than her own well-being and that is the exact thing that made me drop this manga. She is such a sickening self-less martyr that she almost deserves to be sexually harassed by this guy. This guy is a sickening too by the way, really a super-jerk. But appearantly his behaviour should be alright, since he actually is in love with her.
I have read more mangas with a weak female lead and a mean male antagonist, but I did enjoy those (even though I never loved them), but this manga really made me feel bad, it was just disturbing how she lets everything happen to her. Yeah, because she is sooo nice, that she just has to be nice to everybody. *vomit* She's not even realistic. The mean guy is just a jerk, but a jerk in love. Which appearently justifies him being a jerk, but not for me, I just hate him all the same. He is the stereotype ore-sama and he stays an ore-sama.The other characters are not really developing in any way and just stay the same all the time, but at least they are nice. Except from her sister that just uses the female lead (forgot her name) to do things for her .
However, the art looked good. The occasional shoujo expressions during puns were present and the drawing was good, to not say pretty good.
Well, like you read above, I did not enjoy this manga the least bit. Or maybe I should say, I enjoyed the art and that's all.
I do not recommend this manga, it makes you feel sick and it is disturbing, and that without any actual rape. Well done, mangaka. I'd say: A 4 to reward your efforts! read more
the story was so cliche-y and it was defineitly disappointing
at first i thought it was quite interesting, but then when it reached the end i was like all "WTF"
but who cares anyway
so the girl chooses ryo-whatever and gets married blah blah blah
and the other guy becomes a monk
i mean, seriously WHATS UP WITH THAT?!?
it was fine i guess, its like your ordinary shoujo art
the main girl here is TOTALLY retarded
i mean like seriously
she still chose that ryo-whatever guy,
while he was like literally torturing her
c'mon i mean, who the hell wants to be with hat kiind of person
i gave it a 1 since this i probably the worst manga i have EVER read. :|
3, since i kinda liked the art and how dreamy the brother looks like >:Pread more
I'll be honest here: I didn't finish the manga. I just read what the library had and didn't bother to finish it online. Not really worth it since it's one of the WORST manga I've ever read.). But, sadly, I read most of it. I just really want to voice my opinion about this series.
(Warning: There is some language and some spoilers.)
It's stupid, to say the least. I read it because it was there, but...ugh. I had low expectations, but the reality was worse. So, if you read the description, "Hot Gimmick" is about a girl who's 'forced' to become a rich guy's 'sex' slave. There are too many terrible cliches and unnecessary 'drama' throughout the series. But, I do admit, the side-story with Hatsumi's sister and their childhood friend was good and realistic.
The characters were ugly and too many time the backgrounds were pictures of actual parks and whatnot. It's lazy and awkward to see these characters stand in a 'real' picture.
I hate most of the characters. Hatsumi is retarded. I am not joking; with Lord knows how many times she's been abused (mentally, physically, and sexually), she doesn't do ANYTHING! We're supposed to like her because she forgives everyone and she's too nice. What a role-model...
Then there's Ryoki and Azusa. These two assholes are...assholes. Ryoki is abusive and constantly tortures Hatsumi to be his 'sex slave.' But it's okay because he loves her. BULLSHIT! Then the mangaka wants us to feel bad and like Azusa. He has a grudge towards Hatsumi's father and tries to get revenge by (attempting to) gang-bang her. Then we get into his 'sob-story'.
Hatsumi's sister is a user and an asshole (until her relationship with their childhood friend, she's okay then).
But I said "most." There are two notable characters: The childhood friend and Shinogu. Both are really nice and I feel bad that they're in this manga. The childhood friend (don't feel like looking up his name, sorry) is good throughout the series. But this damn mangaka WANTED me to hate my favorite character, Shinogu. She did this by having him crush on his sister. I mean, I respect how hard he tries to ignore this feeling, but THIS ISN'T NECESSARY!
Overall, I hate the story, lazy art, and most of the characters; while the only redeeming qualities were the side-story and the two characters I mentioned above. My apologies for the poorly made review, but please stay awy from this series.read more
It was stale--it was stupid--it didn't make sense at all
If you're a shallow person who likes reading about stupid girl who gets molested, then read this.
I absolutely despise this manga. What the heck was the mangaka thinking? Oh my gosh, face palm every single time. The main character was supposed to be, 'admirable' since she goes around forgiving THE PEOPLE WHO ALMOST GANG RAPED HER. What the heck? that makes no sense at all! It's so frustrating. The main character all through out sounded the same to me. It seemed so unrealistic---gah. I just freaking hate this manga. What kind of girl let's herself get molested, and then she falls in love with the guy who molested her. dude,wtfudge.
Oh gosh I hate this manga so much I can't even academically criticize it.
feel free to read it if you want to be annoyed for the rest of your life.
Hmmm...I dunno how I feel about this series. It's like a mixture of fan fiction, and Gossip Girl. Both of which I enjoy so from that point of view, it was good. I was entertained and strangely addicted even though all of the characters were terrible people (minus maybe Shinogu but I was weirded out by the sister/brother thing). It worked in Clueless, but in this series, the whole dynamic between the brother and sister bordered on creepy. The author also left a lot to the imagination. I was slightly annoyed we didn't get any Asuza aftermath...did he go after Ryoki and get his revenge? Seems we have to come up with our own ending a bit. I enjoyed the little extra about Akane and Subaru, but the 10 Days extra was terrible. I may be in the minority here, but I was happy she ended up with Ryoki. He was by far the most interesting character though he was so self centered and abusive, it's amazing anyone would choose him to be with. Hatsumi on the other hand was an absolutely terrible character on par with Bella from Twilight. I almost didn't want to read about her because she was so helpless. Also this series is the most rape-y weird thing (manga wise) I've read. I don't know if that made it more unbelievable or more terrifying. All in all, it was addictive and I actually liked the read most of the time, though I wouldn't put it on any pedestal. 6/10.read more
This manga was dreadful. I hated watching the poor main character getting sexually abused by all these guys. but, she never left the one who was the biggest jerk to her. He would order her around and call her stupid and try to have sex with her even if she was unwilling. this sends a terrible message to young girls. I felt gross reading this. Its like i was watching her get sexually abused and I couldn't do anything about it. I dont understand her logic in the end. who would chose out of three guys, the one who treats you like dirt?! I wanted to drop this manga many times, I only read the entire series in the hopes she would dump the terrible guy. I am EMBARRASSED to have read this manga. this was a waste of my time. usually, at the end of a manga series, i am proud i have finished and i feel good. This manga made me feel disgusting. I dont recommend this manga. :Cread more
Hot Gimmick was a pretty drama filled love-triangle type story about a girl, her family and childhood friends. There was a lot of confusion and indecisiveness from the main character Hatsumi. She had a passive type personality that allowed for others to influence her too much, and she never really grew as a character. Only a few characters actually matured throughout the series, which I thought was weak. The animation was nice though, so that was a plus for the storyline. It was a fair read, but overall I was disappointed with the outcome and the main character in general.
Hot Gimmick somewhat sets the premise of Cinderella: Poor, but attractive young female meets rich and handsome young male. It does however quickly turn into a blackmail master-slave story and with desperate attempts to explain the main character's feelings towards an abusive love interest.
It's a rather disturbing story to say the least to basically show a girl getting pressured into falling in love with an abusive partner who treats her as a slave, but somehow it's "OK" because he /loves/ her. The main character's passive way of dealing with the sexual assaults on various accounts - including attempted gang rape - was aggravating more than anything.
The message this story signaled was so terrible that even though I enjoyed Miki Aihara's artwork, I just couldn't give it more than a 3 in overall. If this work was created as adult content I would be more forgiving, but as it's for a young girl audience there are just too many morally wrong contents for this to be acceptable.read more
The very first time I picked up this manga, I could not put it down. I read literally twenty-two chapters in one sitting. It was amazing; there was never a moment when I thought, "How long will this take?" I never looked to see how many pages there were left, which is unusual for me. I am sorely disappointed there isn't more. There seems like there should be more than 54 chapters; it ended without warning. The character development wasn't what I wanted either, because much stayed the same.
I don't normally write reviews however this one ticked me off quite a bit. A lot of the story is pretty good like the scandal between the families that happened 8 years ago and the brother not being blood related that's all well and good HOWEVER the fact that the main character was such a push over, got hit and thought nothing of it, takes orders from the A-hole like it's common sense....(it makes me realize how american I am) as well as the fact that the characters for most of the story are horrid.
I've never written a review before. I can't say I've read all the manga or seen all the anime, but I've read my fair share of manga. However, I've never written a review before. Well, Hot Gimmick made me feel an emotion extreme enough to write a review. And I've never done that before.
It's horrible. I hate it. There are no "bad guys" but all the characters are horrible people. *SPOILER* The main character is in an abusive relationship. I've seen couples, I've been a part of a couple, and I loath girls who date guys that treat them like shit. Yes, I hate those guys, too, but they only act that way 'cause there are no consequences for their actions. I'm not saying that all girls should date fat geeks with glasses 'cause they'd 'treat them better', but that's reality and this is a manga. There are no ugly people in this world. Absolutely everybody but the guy the main character is dating and his mom treat her with the utmost care. Well, her childhood friend tried to have her raped. The author still tries to redeem his character, though. Remember what I said about there not being any "bad guys"? He goddamn tried to rape her just to piss somebody else off. But he's not a bad guy. Her boyfriend, who blackmailed her, physically abuses her, verbally abuses her, is not ashamed at all of the fact that he cares about himself and only himself, isn't a "bad guy" 'cause he 'only wants to do it with [her]'. Like not screwing the girl his mom picked out for him redeems him. There are, of course, characters who seem to genuinely care about the main character, but she stays with the guy who hits her? Who actually thinks her only purpose in life is to be his personal slave? *SPOILER* there's no nudity in this manga, so if you're looking for some freaky S&M doujinshi this isn't it. It's the story about a horrible person, surrounded by horrible people in an average world and the author tries to make bullies and corrupt rich people look like knights in shining armor. If s guy like Ryoki Yachibanan existed in real life, he's get the shit kicked out of him trying to rape the neighbor girl, I don't care who him mom is. And you'd think that she, and I know this is gonna come out of left field, might not want to continue dating dating someone who constantly beats her up. It's not a dystopian society, so there's no call for it.
It's just a really, really bad manga. I kept reading it, thinking the payoff would be so sweet when she finally dumps the asshole and starts seeing someone else, anyone else, but no, the guy forces her back into an abusive relationship, and she just cries and goes with him because "I can't help I love him". She doesn't, by the way. Being the main characters, we see her perspective often, and he terrifies her. I can't stress enough how bad of a person he is, and yet, she's worse, because she let's him be a bad guy.read more
I own the omnibus, and boy am I glad I bought them all used!!!
Hot Gimmick focuses on the story of Hatsumi Narita and her family. They live in an apartment complex owned by the nameless company her father works for. Apparently, they have lived there since Hatsumi's childhood.
Well Hatsumi ends up hooking up with Ryoki, and it just unveils the mass of drama that is so unrealistic and ridiculous it makes you want to punch something in the face. I mean, the things that happen are just so out there and wild. . . the name of the manga should be 'Hot Mess'.
Furthermore, the ending leaves you with little resolution, feeling Hatsumi is an imbecile (which, she is), and with something so dramatic and farfetched that it's just plain stupid. . .
HOWEVER. The first portion of the story, actually isn't too bad. I'd say the first six volumes (or two omnibus) were pretty good. I mean, if it was so awful at first, I woulda got rid of 'em. And that art of Miki Aihara is always great! I really enjoy her drawing style!read more
Hot Gimmick is a manga written Miki Aihara. It is a Shojo Manga and has a focus on a meek teenager named Hatsumi Narita. She lives in Japan's Company Housing complex and the story revolves around the difficulties and life styles of such a complex. The crux of story lies in the relationship with the guys in her life. Her Borther, a long time child hood bully and finally a old friend who has come back to the complex.
Art: The art is good but doesn't have a whole lot of variety. All the characters are good looking. The tones and shading is very light and there is rarely ever any contrast. You won't find the stark black that you see in manga such as Rurouni Kenshin.
Story: The story is interesting IF predictable. Frankly the + and - of the story is that it shouldn't be taken too seriously. It is a very funny manga little bit of tension with regards to relationships.
Characters: Cliche but likeable. Not a lot of significant depth but enough variety between them to keep it interesting.
Enjoyment: It takes some time to get interesting (although never boring) but the manga's high point is definitely it's comedy and oh no they didn't moments.
Conclusion: Slightly above average manga. There are some pervy moments but it is by no means that kind of novel. I got the VIZBIG edition (3 volummes in 1). They retail at $20 a book and there are four but you can save some money off amazon. If you can get the set for around 45-60, you got a good deal.
Better Recommendation in Shojo line: Fruits Basket, Nana.read more
At the time while I was reading this manga, I thought the story was pretty average in the beginning. It was just like any other story where a love triangle forms, and a couple forms while one guy is left out. And of course, this guy is the despicable one that the main heroine has no intention of falling in love with. But then twists occur and mysteries begin to develop. By the end of the story, it's a surprising ending, but when you think about it, the story couldn't have ended any other way.
Overall, I would read this manga, but I found the heroine of the story extremely annoying. Obviously, she lets men take over her life too much, and doesn't understand the severity of her actions.
Also, in the beginning it may seem like the story is progressing slowly and is way too happy - trust me, something bad will happen soon enough.
Also, I felt like one of the main male heroes was way too focused on sex. He confused sex with being the most important thing in a relationship, and this sends a wrong message out to the audience. I didn't like how the heroine was letting herself be pushed around by the male hero either.read more
At first glance Hot Gimmick goes a little too far from the average abusive boy-stupid girl relationship stereotype. That’s because the main characters are often too edgy at being themselves.
Nevertheless, that is what you would find only at first glance. Actually the characters are quite well created and their behavior is well motivated (most of the time). So I was a bit surprise to see so many negative reviews.
First, the not very bright, unassertive and often annoyingly accommodating Hatsumi seems to be the worst roll model but if you look closer you’ll find that she is actually devoted to her friends and family and cherishes everyone’s feelings (of course that is the reason behind her constant problems). Her ability to be gentle to everyone regardless of what they’ve done to her is what the whole story is centered around. That’s where Ryouki comes in, of course, being the nastiest asshole there is. Personally, I think his behavior is the most well-motivated and easy to read since he never had friends or a proper family. That is why he is naturally attracted to Hatsumi but is rather clumsy when it comes down to communicating or dealing with people at all. Their relationship seems too pushy or violent but the truth is that is because they are complete opposites – Hatsumi being too shy and to concerned about everybody else but herself and Ryouki who doesn’t really care for anyone else at all.
Hatsumi’s character doesn’t really develop much until the end when she is finally able to make a decision herself and stand up to it (which is a huge step having in mind her personality) while the one who is really developing is Ryouki although it is really easy to miss it. He actually grows aware of his feelings first although he is too annoyed with them but doesn’t let go of them although he continues to treat Hatsumi like a slave (which by the way would be a normal behavior considering his family’s influence and his inability to communicate with people – he is unable to act in any other way possible).
Sadly, for all those fans of Azusa-Hatsumi (Me! Me!) or Shinogu-Hatsumi pairings – those were doomed from the start since Ryouki’s character is the background center of the story and his personality would apply only to Hatsumi’s kindness. Of course, most of the things he did to her seemed heartless and mean but are easy to explain and therefore forgive since he never actually betrayed her unlike Azusa and Shinogu. He is just an asshole (who’s in love with her) and that’s pretty much to it – no background thoughts or anything. Even the sexual tension between the two of them is easily explained with his feelings and her unassertiveness. Of course, all of those encounters are well-covered with his constant nagging about wanting to practice to do it (although he often stresses he wants to practice with no other than her) but if that wasn’t like this who would have continued reading anyway?!
So overall I liked the story. The background characters were also well developed although the drama twists were a little bit too much for me. The art was quite good, too, although there were several tiny things that could have been better. I wouldn’t recommend to anyone who doesn’t search for motives behind the actions to read it because that way it will only seem like one very abusive story about a stupid girl and an asshole boy. read more