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A rude girl and an effeminate boy switch bodies and find that it might be a better fit for both of them in this crazy comedy:
Nanako Momoi is the belle of high school... as long as she stays quiet. Once she shows her true self, guys' dreams are shattered for she is a true tomboy. Akira Uehara has the looks and brains, but, unfortunately, his personality is so dull it overcasts a shadow, and nobody notices him.
One day, Nanako's grandfather comes up with a crazy invention, and Nanako and Akira trade bodies! She's in his body, and he's in hers!
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One of the few great gender-bender comedies
First off, just because this is a "shoujo" manga doesn't mean that it has to be your typical school romance manga. If you're interested in a funny and smart manga however, then you might want to check this title out. Also, I have no idea why you would pick up a body-swap manga and ask for it to be "realistic". It says right on the back of volume 1, "a girl and a boy swap bodies!"
Keep in mind that Akira has been the only narrator so far. Before he ended up in a girl's body and afterwards, it's HIS thoughts that we're reading so he would probably be considered the main protagonist. That's rare enough for a shoujo manga and probably a good indicator of this manga's uniqueness. Some things in the story like the characters are intentionally exaggerated to make fun of gender roles/stereotypes. It reinforces gender stereotypes to an extreme in order to criticize them or just make you laugh. And I laughed a lot while reading this, more than I thought I would when I first picked up the volumes. This series is a lot smarter than its embarrasing title and girly covers may lead you to believe. I love it, it's like a surprise.
I've only finished the first 5 volumes so far but the Tokypop just released the 6th volume so I'll be reading that soon and possibly editing this comment in the future!
a TRUE gender bender
so it's already 7 volumes now, and i'm still on the edge of my seat.
there are a lot of criticisms going around but i beg to differ. here is my take on things.
romance and gender bender: this is a gender bender manga, so expect some same sex infatuations or whatever you call it. in fact, i praise this manga for being true to the genre, unlike most gender benders that are half-hearted. at least, in this manga, you can see that LOVE TRANSCENDS GENDER. and that it doesn't necessarily have to be a love between the two main characters. (this is the issue for some since they've been pushing for a momoixakira pairing. well i also would accept the idea.) let's be open minded, please. whether it's a girlxboy or boyxboy pairing, let's just accept which pairing prevails.
characters: momoi is a b***h.she gets on everybody's nerve. we all know that by now. but that's her personality. an exaggeration that was intended by the mangaka. akira is pathetic. girly beyond what a girl is. heck she's a disgrace both to men and women. nonetheless, an exaggeration that was intended. the mangaka is trying to poke fun at the stereotypes of how girly girls and arrogant boys behave.
plot: don't take things seriously. it is meant to be insanely ridiculous. if you're looking for realism or logic, this isn't the right manga for you. heck, don't expect to find it in any of ai morinaga's works.
comedy: more than the romance, i've been reading this because of the humor. ai morinaga is really amazing. she never fails to crack me up.
releases: this comes out in japan once in every two months!! no! i can't wait.
all in all, this is something i won't get tired of. XD
I have been clinging to the hope that some sort of plot twist or character development will take place in this manga, but it looks like nothing will change. But I have not given up yet, I have been on and off reading this since everyone in this manga is so disgustingly selfish. You think their has to be a limit to how selfish a person could be, but not in this manga. I don't even know why he likes her, she has displayed absolutely no likable traits.
Another thing is how the story focuses a lot on how people believe boys and girls should act, nothing wrong with that, but how it is being done leaves you wanting to blow off almost every characters head while laughing, "FINALLY THIS MANGA IS OVER AHAHAHAHAHA!" (Drives you insane really -_- )
Truthfully I wish this manga was over so I could stop reading it. But like I said, I am hanging on to a shred of hope that character development will show and a plot twist will end this manga in a way it makes you feel all is right with the world again. A massacre does not need to take place.
... Last updated on May 14th, 2010, 11:03pm
Y'know, I REALLY love Morinaga Ai, due to the fact that she can make me laugh and pee in my pants. But in all honesty, this probably has to be her worst work yet.
As stated below by other commenters, the female protaganist really is a horrible person, to the point where I would've thrown the book at the wall, if I had one that is. The male lead starts out cute at first, but becomes rather pathetic in later scenes.
If you're a shoujo fan, then I would NOT recommend this series at all. But if you're a masochist, then go right ahead.
I love Ai Moringa I mean she's funny insane and her way of slapping comedy is sadistic and yeah FUNNY. I'm a hypocrite if I'll tell the whole world that this manga is horrible. well, its not horrible (or maybe I just don't want to admit that its horrible)
for me in the positive side: -it made me grip and excited to wait what will happen next. -its hilarious that I look like crazy laughing out loud alone in front my laptop. -the classic comedy provided by Ai Morinaga is really awesome at the same time for me. Its brilliant.
so what makes this manga bad for me? Negative side: -yeah, count me in. I think Momoi is really horrible to the point that I, myself want to wring her neck. -the story is shoujo right? I didn't saw any Yaoi and yuri in the genre. (well, considering its genderbend, I'm aware of the possibilities that It contains yuri(shoujo-ai) and yaoi (shonen-ai) stuff) but it seems like its turning on a wrong side. makes me think *did the mangaka forgot to twist something? -hehe and Akira sure is pathetic. ------------------ my point is: it already reached far but the TWO MAIN CHARACTERS don't have any interaction at all. I'm always asking: "will the two of them end up together?" I wonder what will Ai Morinaga do to twist the story and make the two of them close *something like that* theres a part there wherein MOMOI (in akira's body) gave AKIRA a bath (in momi's body) I think that part is a good start to make the two of them close but I'm dissapointed that after that, it seems like nothing happened and Momoi turned into yuri falling for shiina and so so so. then this Akira falling for senbongi. tsk tsk. my my my. (BUT I LIKE HOW SHIINA'S BROTHER BULLIES AKIRA (in momoi's body) VERY CUTE. ^_^ but if ever Akira won't have his body back. it really is sad. --- all in all its a good manga. (as for now) now what makes me want to run after it and continue supporting the manga? there's a challenge: HOW WILL AI MORINAGA CREATE A LOVE STORY OUT OF THIS WACKY AFFAIR? *well I hope she didn't forgot her focus and enjoyed the sadist game of momoi. because I'm really waiting how will she try to dwell the two of them. I'm looking forward for a good ending. (because If she can provide a good twist them what else can I say? SHE'S AWESOME! after what happened? my my. its really something. that is.... If she can create a great twist. twist or whatever it is.) THE ENDING WILL JUSTIFY EVERYTHING.
OMG GREAT!!-Edit:Now, not much
ive read al the chapters up to vol 7 ch 3 and i can honestly say OMG GREAT!! it is available on mangafox. I would definatly recomend tis series to any shojo lover, i HATE how momoi is at times though...
August, 28, 2011 Edit: Well, it's been a long time, and now, iirc, this manga isn't that great, I'm not even sure why I even liked it....
... Last updated on August 28th, 2011, 3:29am
whether you're comfortable or not
The first volume is pretty F'd up. Not the gender bender things, but the momoi that becomes Akira is really a horrible person. That in itself isn't the issue. But while reading the first volume, the joke just doesn't fit in. The things that happend to the male protaganist would be enough for someone to seriously commit suicide. His family is happy without him there, and his life generally sucks.
The joke starts to sink in after volume two so the enjoyment goes up. Though there was a point in volume 3 where I thought that a person would go pretty crazy. The male lead is such a wimp but it makes you wonder why he doesn't threaten to kill himself or someone else to get them to fix the machine.
Eh after awhile I guess you stop caring though. Though you wonder if the craziness reflects on the manga ka in anyway. The girl so easily switches to liking girls, constantly cheats on his gf(no self control), and supposedly guys are like that(She really is a horrible person).
Also there's not much reason to keep the secret here.
This was my first series by Ai Morinaga. I bought the original ADV release of the first volume. I LOVED it... and was totally bummed when ADV never released the rest. I literally "w00t!"ed when I heard Tokyopop was picking it up. I love the characters, the humor, the slapstick - it's all good. And I agree with Splintered's comment about Ai Morinaga being insane. I'm pretty sure she is! XD
As for Aenonar's review. Well, this is a comedy. It doesn't have to make sense, as long as it's funny... and the whole "We switched bodies. Oh well. See you at school tomorrow." thing is part of what makes the character of Momoi so ridiculously funny. She's not meant to be "realistic" (and why are you looking for realism in a gender bender?), she's meant to be extremely self-centered and most likely certifiably insane. As for you wondering how anyone could like this series... Just because the humor's gone over your head, that doesn't mean other people aren't getting the joke and having a blast with it.
This is a great comedy series... and I'm loving every minute of it.
This manga lasted 5 chapters before I got so repulsed by the horrible characters that I threw it away. How could you possibly like this messed up series? Everyone are just totally messed up in their head, it's nowhere near any realism either <.<
"Oh, we seem to have swapped bodies. Oh well, whatever. See ya in school tomorrow"
... Last updated on October 21st, 2008, 5:42pm
More humor than romance
I'm pretty sure Morinaga Ai is insane, in the good way of course. Both the story and characters are nothing to write home about, but if you are reading her work then you are really in it for crazy comedy. There's very little serious development and instead a lot of wacky situations and hilarity. Some people might get uncomfortable with the whole gender issues (which begs the question, why the hell are you reading a gender bender?) but if you can get past that, this is a very fun read.
If you are looking for straight romance or drama (or anything that stays serious for more than two pages), this might not be for you. But if you are looking for a laugh and cracked out manga, read it.