Hey guys, today I’ve decided to do a review on Inu x Boku SS, as seen from the title. I originally wanted to write different reviews for the manga and anime, however I realized that I wouldn’t be able to keep my hands off the other when reviewing them separately so for today’s post we’re going to be looking at both. Since the manga series is still ongoing, I’m going to review what’s happened THUS FAR I.E. NOVEMBER 2013. Prepare yourselves…
To be quite honest, I think this will be the most heavily packed manga review that I’ve ever done. I have many mixed feelings when it comes to this series… let’s start with the plot…
Inu x Boku SS takes place at a residence dorm called Maison de Ayakashi AKA Ayakashi Hall where atavists, nonhuman individuals who are said to be direct reincarnation of their demon ancestors are residing. Due to the prestige and importance of these young demon atavists, each is assigned a secret service agent to ensure their safety during their stay.
Our protagonist is a girl named Ririchiyo Shirakiin who is an atavist with a sharp tongue despite her shy personality which usually results in her social ostracism whether in school or among her household servants. Since she comes from a prestigious family, she’s been sheltered and protected all her life. She applied to Maison de Ayakashi in order to get away from her home. When she arrives, she’s assigned a secret service agent named Soushi Miketsukami, who is wholly and unashamedly devoted to her. Pretty unique setting for a supernatural spirit demon kind of story which seems like where it’s headed.
Now before I continue into the spoiler details which need to be revealed in order for me to fully articulate my critique, allow me to warn you that If you have not seen or read the series, just watch the anime and forget about the manga because the anime wraps everything you ever want in a happy ending and presents it to you In a nice thirteen episode single season package with some pretty great songs while the manga… well…. you know when manga authors or artists try really hard to construct an interesting and thought provoking plot for their viewers but certain viewers will go into the story expecting and wanting certain plot devices? THIS IS ONE OF THOSE SERIES.
BEWARE SPOILERS BELOW. IM SERIOUS. IF YOU HAVEN’T READ THE MANGA, DON’T LOOK DAMMIT!!!!!
…there are so many things that went wrong. And so many things that could have been better executed.
I’m a little surprised that the manga’s listed target audience is the Shonen demographic. I think the cute romance and almost high school-like emotional turmoil that Ririchiyo experiences is more akin to Shojo. Not to mention Miketsukami’s bishounen appearance *//////* I feel like the anime pushes the story into the shojo demographic even more just because none of the reincarnation-blow-your-mind plot is included. Sure, there are small mentions of the characters drawn from future chapters in the manga and inserted into the anime’s short plotline to create a more well-rounded story but the way it ends really makes all the fangirls sigh at the adorable get-together between the two main characters.
Manga. Plot twist. Confusion. So many different feels. REALLY? Did you have to BEHEAD HIM?!?!? GOOD GODS OF ANIME THAT WAS A PAINFUL MOMENT FOR ALL OF US. Even though the Atavists are reincarnated, the future Soushi that meets Ririchiyou in the next life is not the same one as the original one who underwent all that pain and suffering and crap who ends up meeting Ririchiyou through the letters. The connection is just not the same! Since Soushi lost his memories of his past life, all he has to hold onto is his feelings for Ririchiyou… TдT Also, after the first arc, which ends with Soushi’s death, the plot starts to lag a bit because we’re fast-forwarding to everyone’s next lives where they reunite. The manga is still ongoing, we technically don’t know if Ririchiyou and Soushi will end up together again since Ririchiyou terminates her contract with Soushi after she comes to realize that he’s not the same Soushi she fell in love with.
As well, there seems to be a lot of filler with the other characters who are given more focus in the story since plot’s shifted away from Ririchiyou and Soushi. Personally, the most interesting characters for me are Zange Natsume and Rensho Sorinozuka. We learn in the manga, what Zange’s gift of foresight really entails which totally takes a dark twist down the supernatural path that the anime doesn’t really allude to. Sorinozuka becomes a character of interest because whereas everyone has been reincarnated, he continues living.
We’ve only gotten to the second reincarnation of the cast so far so I really wonder how many times will they reincarnate that Ririchiyou and Soushi will live the exact same fates as the original lives where they met each other and fell in love. Hopefully, it doesn’t end in death again. But this is just my speculation since the features behind atavists seem so restricted and predetermined in atavist souls.
Personally, I’ll probably buy the official translation of the manga all the way up to the end of the first arc because I really love the relationship between Ririchiyou and Soushi… and I know what you’re all thinking – there’s a SEVEN YEAR AGE DIFFERENCE, but love is love, right?
On a side note of the translation between the officially licensed manga and the original translation, Sorinozuka’s SS agent, Nobara Yukinokoji usually says “MANIAC” when she sees cute loli-girls in the original manga and anime adaptation, but in the officially translated version, she says “SMEXY” (LOLLLLLL). I was really impressed with Melissa Tanaka’s translation of the YenPress’s print copy because of colloquial and idiomatic the dialogue and script came across. It was a really enjoyable experience. The fluent and effortless translation made the story ever more vivid so if you’re the type that likes to buy your manga, I strongly recommend you get the first licensed English volume of Inu X Boku.
So thank you for sticking with me to the very end of this really long and perhaps long-winded review. I hope you’ll continue to support and read Inu X Boku SS as I have, the art is amazing and worth looking at. Tune in next week for another Midweek Manga review!
What are you pondering today?