Story/Art: Kazune Kawahara/Aruko
Translation/Adaptation: JN productions/Ysabet Reinhard MacFarlane
What They Say
Now that they’ve been dating for just over six months, Takeo and Yamato finally have their first kiss! Meanwhile, Takeo’s mom goes into labor, and something happens that makes her realize how much Takeo’s grown… There’s also a hint that love might be in Sunakawa’s future…!
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers):
I’ve been looking forward to the new baby arc ever since Takeo’s mom mentioned that he was going to become a big brother. The birth of a sibling is kind of unusual for a high school manga. Parents generally don’t get a lot of attention either, but Takeo’s mom dominates the first half of the volume in a big way. While her pregnancy gives Takeo something to anticipate and worry about, she also gets one-on-one time with Yamato, and we learn a bit about her relationship with Takeo’s dad.
When the baby finally arrives, Takeo acts more like an anxious new father than a big brother. For those familiar with the TV series, his panic is funny but doesn’t quite achieve the level of hilarity that the anime does. However, the manga includes a slower paced scene not in the anime, and it gives the birth of baby Goda an added bit of cute comedy.
Speaking of cute and comedic, the subsequent arc is Valentine’s Day, which, like Christmas, ends up a group affair rather than romantic time alone for Takeo and Yamato. The creators once more remind us of the disparity between Takeo’s and Suna’s popularity through the measure of Valentine’s chocolates. However, this time it’s to emphasize Takeo’s eagerness for his very first true-love chocolate, and his emotional ups and downs are fun to watch. Oddly though, when the long-awaited moment arrives, Yamato’s gift doesn’t even get its own panel.
Then it’s on to White Day for the last chapter. Not surprisingly, Takeo’s all fired up to return the favor to Yamato. The actual making of his White Day gift was not included in the anime, and I’m surprised it wasn’t. Takeo’s unfamiliarity with the kitchen is good for a number of laughs, but it also creates an opportunity for Takeo and Suna to talk about relationships, which makes a great segue as the focus switches from Takeo’s love life to Suna’s.
Extras include story thus far and notes from the creators.
It’s a little unusual to have a high schooler freaking out about a baby on the way. However, the role fits Takeo pretty well, and in the midst of him overreacting to every little thing, we learn more about his mom, who is a pretty interesting character herself. Then it’s on to more standard high school stuff: Valentine’s Day and White Day. For Takeo, though, this is brand-new territory, and his giddy enthusiasm makes it a fresh experience for readers as well.
Content Grade: B+
Art Grade: B
Packaging Grade: B+
Text/Translation Grade: B
Age Rating: 13+
Released By: Viz Media
Release Date: October 6th, 2015