Login to add items to your list, keep track of your progress, and rate series!
Now that Ira's older sister is getting married, who will take her to the bathroom after 10 p.m. and sing "Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star" outside the bathroom door in order to protect her from the beautiful, androgynous, child-eating clown? Will marrying a closeted gay man help?
Considered by many fans to be Ooshima's best work.
バナナブレッドのプディング Banana Bread Pudding Banana Bureddo no Pudingu
You must login to comment for this series! Register an account.
Yeah, the girl is really annoying and a terrible heroine, i don't mind the occasional crazy character but she was just really annoying. I wanted to slap her. She gives off the vibe that she isn't really 'different' but just trying to be weird for attention.
I didn't understand whatever metaphors or allusions were put in there as im not a psychologist. I guess if you overlook the stupid main character there is a lot of symbolism but the author didn't put it in very well...i mean, it's overly obvious that its supposed to symbolize something and it gets annoying fast. The 'symbolism' didn't even go with the storyline it was completely out of left field.
Storywise this didn't go anywhere and i wouldnt reccomend it unless you like stories with a lot of allusions or something. artwise this was really pretty but plotwise it sucked. The whole thing made no sense. None of the characters made any sense.
... Last updated on January 20th, 2011, 4:26pm
Worthy Attempt At Freudian Theories, But Too Vague
I not even going to pretend I understood the metaphors and symbolisms and psychoanalysis of this tale, but I can sincerely say that I found several moments within the tale compelling, and several sentiments and behaviorism good sounding boards for further discussion. But none of the characters were ever developed enough for me to really "get into" their shoes.
I think it was a little too vague to be meaningful and powerful to me. The characters all seemed a little unapproachable and I didn't really care enough about any of them to want to really re-read the tale over and over to piece it together.
The art itself is fairly typical of the burgeoning new "serious" and "mature" subjects that were being address with shoujo in the 70s. If you like Freudian psychoanalysis and the art and delivery style of the 49-ers, I'd suggest giving this one a try. The sketchy, swirly lines of art are too "small" and "fuzzy" for my preference.
... Last updated on June 6th, 2010, 8:34am
Really character driven shoujo manga-- it doesn't help that the character (Ira) may be a little insane or autistic. None of this is made clear, if it's just a girl turning into a woman, refusing to leave the girl behind or if Ira is slightly unstable. Either way, is raises a good question of why Ira should have to leave the shoujoness behind, or why a mentally unstable girl cannot function relatively well in a safe environment.
To confuse things more, maybe it's Ooshima making a statement on marriage-- Ira's sister get's married, has a baby, and wonder's why she has never seen the wonderful things she guarantees are real. Ira get's "married" to hide and protect gay men, who are either abused or abusive. It just isn't an easy world or an easy manga.
Read it, you won't regret it. It's a type of magical manga I've rarely seen. Don't let all the serious talk fool you, there's some great comedy too.
I guess this is one story which might not appeal towards those looking for stereotypical romance, straight-forward plotting(where the storyline is easy to figure out and dumbed down for the masses) and modern manga storytelling where the plot, character interactions, the themes, etc. are often straight to the point and really easy to infer and figure out. It is also not for those who can't read a story without good art because the art here is the bare minimum and actually quite subtle and vague when delivering expressions, thoughts and so forth.
In Banana Bread, the hints are far more difficult to follow and everything from the characters' intentions, their thoughts, their interactions to even their motivations are often subtle and in between the lines. And it's not always what they say or do but rather what they don't, that actually tells you more about the characters themselves. It's not even like Endo short stories where it's deep and very thought-provoking but where the narration and most of the themes are laid out for you to figure out. In Banana, everything is like 5 to 10 times harder to think about and understand. And even worse, it is sheer hardcore mindfuckery(even crazier than Homunculus) and it is one of those titles where much of the story is vague and open to interpretation. In fact, I confess that it took me 2 times to read this manga to really appreciate everything about it. In short, treat this as a piece of literature and less as some manga story and you will do well in understanding it.
The plot itself: Well, this is more like the "coming of age" story of an extremely eccentric character who is repeatedly forced to face reality and how she deals with life itself in her own manner. It is also about the effects her actions, thoughts, etc. have on others and in really strange manners. And yes, she really has a few screws loose because her very person is far more bizarre and crazy than almost any manga character I've come across.
Ira is an utter screwball who lives a life of fantasy where her words, feelings, thoughts and actions have NO repercussions on others and herself and where fantasies are supposed to become reality. She is child-like and innocent to the point of being delusional, oblivious, cruel and heartless.
Spoiler (highlight to view)
And yes, I won't go into it but I consider her to be the most manipulative person in the story, even though she might seem really sweet and innocent.
And really, she has such bizarre and idealized notions of "daily life", "romance", "marriage" and "cohabitation" and so on that her family has completely resigned themselves to her behaviour.
Spoiler (highlight to view)
In fact, when her sister got married, she seemed quite pleased to actually be free from Ira.
Now, Ira's thoughts and behaviour might have been the type which certain adults would find "cute", "amusing", "sweet", "entertaining", etc. in a child but when such a person grows up into a teenager who still holds such notions and fantasies, well... they would be called "annoying", "foolish" or even "completely spaced-out". Such a person might even be seen as a heavily disturbed person suffering from psychological issues like "having severe problems distinguishing reality from fantasy", "inability to interact with others without reverting to escapism", "inability to think logically" and so on.
Throw in a cast of characters who each have their own problems and unique perceptions and you have got 1 hell of a story. And yes, most of them are pretty crazy too because they keep being strung along by Ira and her "fantasies". And in order to maintain a resemblance of normalcy in their daily lives, they have little choice but to play along. After all, you're dealing with someone who is exceptionally fragile and would collapse, should her "reality" be shattered.
Next, mix in psychoanalysis like Freud and "supposed theories about gender identity and sexuality"(which were all the rage in the 40s to 70s), contrasting themes of innocence and cruelty/fantasy and reality/different notions of romance/love etc., and you have Banana Bread no Pudding.