vol 18 of That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime
I went into Scum Villian blind unlike the other 2 where I had seen the donghua's. It's the first one she did and like the other set in an ancient Chinese cultivator world but with a twist. I really liked it and would recommend it.How is it? These LNs are tempting me but I'm so torn about if I'll actually enjoy it, being too swept up in the hype or not, which one to even choose out of the 3...
This early volume dates from 2010 (so probably was serialized a little earlier, in the noughties) and is an 'interesting' example of how storytelling has changed in BL (as you rightly say) in a decade or so. The main thing that struck me with this volume is the much more conventional art style used by the mangaka for her characters! (Hasekura! Those eyes!) Since then, Memeco Arii has let her style become much more loose and free (I hesitate to say cartoonish, but you know what I mean?) - which seems to me to express a general change in attitude towards her characters and storytelling too.Hitorijime Boyfriend (Complete) - I have to say that for as much as I like Hitorijime My Hero (which was born from this series), I was shocked by how abusive the relationship between Kensuke and Hasekura is. There are quite a few sexual scenes where Kensuke is saying no but Hasekura continues with whatever they are doing in the given scene, which is uncomfortable considering the much more gentle and wholesome the relationship is between them in My Hero. A lot of BL titles are like this so it doesn't really bother me on a fundamental level since I know the genre is like this, I just didn't expect Hitorijime Boyfriend to follow the same trend given the series that span out of it. Also on a much more minor point, I didn't find the lettering/translation quality to be up to Kodansha's usual standards, feels somewhat stiff in places and there is at least one very noticeable typo. :/
Agreed, I much prefer the direction she's developed her artwork now compared to Hitorijime Boyfriend. It especially worked for me since I got into Hitorijime through the anime adaptation first and that certainly benefited from her style.The main thing that struck me with this volume is the much more conventional art style used by the mangaka for her characters! (Hasekura! Those eyes!) Since then, Memeco Arii has let her style become much more loose and free (I hesitate to say cartoonish, but you know what I mean?) - which seems to me to express a general change in attitude towards her characters and storytelling too.
You're so right - and it's telling that the secondary characters in Boyfriend are the ones that had so much more potential for development. Maybe she had to 'prove herself' with a more conventional volume first before the publisher/editor felt confident they could let her loose on the story she really wanted to write. Or maybe, in writing the first book, the other story emerged and demanded greater attention...Most of all I just appreciate that the characters are less stereotypical (even back at the beginning) and have had the chance to be developed in so many interesting ways.