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Ani-Imo Vol. #03 Manga Review

3 min read

Ani-Imo Volume 3 CoverThe antics increase alongside the trigger warnings

Creative Staff
Story/Art: Haruko Kurumatani
Translation: Christine Dashiell

What They Say
Hikaru is pressuring Youta to take their relationship too far and too fast for her brother, who still can’t see Hikaru as anything but a little sister. But Hikaru is not willing to take “no” for an answer. As tensions escalate between the siblings-turned-lovers, onlookers Oda and Mayama can’t help but notice “Hikaru”‘s uncertainty – a weakness Oda fully intends to exploit! But the opportunity turns to disaster when Oda and Mayama’s hasty pursuit leads to an accident that changes everything…

Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers):
As the volume opens up, we find Youta cornered in the bath by Hikaru. Though this starts off somewhat goofy, it becomes increasingly uncomfortable till it reaches a point of almost rape. In the end Youta is saved by the sudden appearance of their little sister, but before it reaches that point he’s literally begging Hikaru to stop and lamenting his inability to physically resist. It’s a straight up disturbing scene, and even more disturbingly Hikaru doesn’t end up answering for it at all.

With that unpleasantness shelved, we venture back to the school, where Mayama and Oda end up falling down the stairs together while spying on the twins. Much to the surprise of all parties involved, Mayama and Oda end up switching bodies as well, allowing/forcing Youta and Hikaru to finally come clean to the pair. Mayama is then put through the ringer by Oda in order to take over her life, and in the process Youta ends up feeling a real kinship with the boy-become-girl. The twins then introduce the pair to Ichijou, and afterwards the not so kind doctor starts to put the moves on the unwitting Youta. This pisses Hikaru off enough to resort to violence, and Youta demands that she apologize, driving a rift between the pair.

Will Hikaru be able to rescue Youta from Ichijou’s machinations? And just what will happen between Mayama and Hikaru thanks to this new paradigm?

In Summary
This volume is an odd one, as on the whole it’s easily the best entry in the series yet. It’s a lot of fun due to the new change in dynamics, and there are some absolutely hilarious results. The characters also seem to really come into their own and feel a lot more unique here. The resolution with Ichijou is also really great to see as well. Unfortunately, though, this volume also brings with it a new trigger warning. There’s something that’s essentially attempted rape here, and it’s unfortunately not really dealt with at all (and even somewhat repeated near the end to a lesser degree). Obviously this may make readers uncomfortable, so be forewarned. Hopefully the author will manage to address the topic in the future as it truly is a nasty splotch on a series that definitely didn’t need one. Even so, this remains a great entry into the series that really manages to nail everything else, so assuming you can get past that serious hurdle (as well as the ones the series already set up), be sure to give it a look.

Content Grade: A
Art Grade: B
Packaging Grade: B+
Text/Translation Grade: B+

Age Rating: Older Teen
Released By: Yen Press
Release Date: May 19, 2015
MSRP: $12.99

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