Twin Cake (2012 – 2013)

Written and Drawn by Aoi Hana

Link

Yes, I know I’ve been doing A LOT of manga reviews lately

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Twin cake is about a girl named Kaede (shorter haired one) who idolizes a famous model, Susuran so much that she decided to pursue modelling herself. She even joins Susuran’s modelling agency in order to get closer to her, but has never actually met Susuran despite this. However, she has failed to become popular and instead works much more like an assistant and secretary for her agency. After Susuran fires ANOTHER one of her managers, the agency is in a desperate need to replace them in order to look more legit. As a last minute desperation, she decides to hire Kaede as Susuran’s new manager.

Kaede is first very excited to become Susuran’s new manager. However her image of Susuran is immediate shattered upon walking in on Susuran having sex with another female model. (No spoiler, second chapter lol). Kaede, embarrassed begins to see Susuran in a different light and falls even deeper in love. Susuran however, is still in love with someone else.

This was a pretty good manga, although short (7 chapters). It IS pretty angsty (prepare yourself) but still enjoyable.

THERE IS NUDITY. It’s not a main element (so it’s not hentai) but it does exist, as well as sex.

Art: 6.5/10

Yuri Rating: 10/10

Overall Rating: 8/10

EXPLANATION WITH SPOILERS BELOWWWWWW

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Shin Sekai Yori (2012-2013)

Also known as “From the New World”

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Originally a novel, it has been adapted into an Anime AND manga. However, this review will be based on the anime.

The story revolves around 5 friends, 3 boys and two girls which takes place 1000 years from now, where humans now have the capability to possess psychic (more like telekinetic)  powers, after war broke out and humanity was close to being destroyed by PK users (telekinetic people). The story mainly revolves around Saki.

We start out with Saki being in the middle of what looks like an earthquake. It turns out though, it’s just the effects of her Psychic powers coming in! Her parents then burst in, proud and relieved that she can now graduate elementary school.

“What do you mean coming in? and what?…elementary school? How old is this girl?” Although humans are technically born with psychic powers, they don’t actually work until at a certain age. One is not allowed to graduate from elementary school until their powers come in.

We then go through these 5 childhood friends adventures, trials, life, (more like Saki’s life) and figuring out the mystery of what this “new world” is.

From left to right:

From left to right: Shun, Satoru, Saki, Mamoru, Maria

To be quite honest, this was one of the best anime’s I have ever seen. Ever.

Although slightly lacking in Yuri content (which is also not permanent =/), this was a really good Anime. I highly recommend it to EVERYONE. Not just shoujo-ai/yuri readers.

The story line is dark, dramatic, mysterious, but compelling. It takes you into another society, yet the Anime itself is somehow a metaphor for our own society (or so I am told). This isn’t really one of those stories with gaping plot holes, or with an overly metaphoric and symbolic anime where the “deep” message goes over your head (unlike -cough SIMOUN cough-). It actually makes sense.

They don’t spell out everything for you, but the subtle hints and subtle things characters do or say, hints to an answer you feared they were hinting to. If you pay attention to everything (or even watch it over again) you can actually put the pieces together yourself, with out having the anime try and spell everything out for you.

But for those that couldn’t or were confused at some point, just like i did with Simoun, I do a bit of an analysis below.

It is compelling, dark, tragic, mysterious, yet incredible.

As for Yuri content, although it’s not actually a main element (nor is it a consistent one), the yaoi/yuri couples is more saying something about this new worlds’ society, rather than as a main romantic element.

So, despite the amazing story, this is a blog focused on shoujo/ai yuri.

The amount of Yuri/Yaoi is great, but unfortunately it doesn’t really last long. In general, relationships don’t really appear often (although hints of love is,) I do have to dock points for that.

Yuri Rating: 6/10

Overall Rating: 10/10

But, this is an anime I HIGHLY recommend, not just for yuri watchers, but for EVERYONE. It’s just THAT good.

MASSIVE MASSIVE SPOILERS PAST THIS POINT

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Shitsurakuen (2010 – 2012)

“Paradise Lost” is the direct English translation, however it is mostly known as Shitsurakuen.

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Is starts off with an optimistic, strong-willed girl Himoto Sora. She has just transferred to a school where males are more “dominant” and actually “own” girls. It’s a virtual reality game, that is a bit too real. The girls are “weapons” in this game and they battle each other (not like THAT you DIRTY MINDED PERSON, YOU). Her best childhood friend Tsuki goes to this school.

Using a special glove to draw weapons from the girls’ bosom, and battle each other. If the weapon gets hurt, the girl feels the same pain. The only exception is death, if the weapon is completely broken, usually the girl is just severely injured and unconscious.

Only males get sent this glove. Except for Sora.

As she learns more about this, she acts all “knightly” and vows to try and save as many girls as possible from this chauvinistic system.

I would categorize this into the shoujo-ai and harem genres, as you can probably guess she has many many girls she’s quite nice to.

The ending is mind-fucking (By ending I mean chapter 23….but Chapter 24 is messed up too so…)

You can read the English translation of it on mangafox, here.

Art: 10/10

Yuri Rating: 8/10

Overall Rating: 4/10 (more detail as to why below, but contains spoilers)

 

WARNING WARNING MAJOR SPOILERS PAST THIS POINT

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Bodacious Space Pirates (2012)

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AKA Mōretsu Space Pirates/ Moretsu Pirates

While looking for new Shoujo-ai/yuri anime, I stumbled across this little gem on Crunchyroll.

Originally a light novel, it has been adapted into an anime, and a movie is currently in production.

Upon first glance, this seemed to be no yuri at all. I mean look at the plot summary.

It takes place is in the future, where space pirates exist. In an all girls’ high school on Earth (supposedly) is Kato Marika, direct descendant of the famous space pirate, Gonzaemon, Captain of the Bentenmaru. Kato Marika is told that her father, who she has never met, has passed and the only way to keep the Bentenmaru alive is if she takes over as captain.

I know what you’re thinking “this sounds stupid.” Yes, the name is retarded (well the english one at least…) and ok, it sounds more like a slice of life plot than a Shoujo-ai. What convinced me to actually watch it though was that I read it was recommended by ANN. And you know what they say about ANN….

ann

So, I started watching it. It is only 26 episodes long, (at least for now…) and you can watch it on Crunchyroll here .

Don’t worry, there are no possible male pairings in this one. The only one that’s good looking enough is thankfully, married.

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 I’m Kane McDougal. Btw I’m married so don’t fret your little hearts out.

In terms of Yuri content itself, there is not much. Most of it is subtext and implication, EXCEPT for one pairing which had no development (hints here and there) up to a point where it becomes officially canon (YAY). It won’t be hard for you to guess which one either….

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Me? A Lesbian? How dare you! I clearly do not look like a typical butch lesbian…

Looks like we’ll have to head off to fan fiction for this one folks…

Although also lacking in action (as in nobody ever dies or gets hurt) that doesn’t mean there was no action, there indeed was. But they’re not intense fights that leave you gripping to the edge of your seat, wondering if they’ll survive.

BUT the story line overall is light-hearted, funny and awesome.

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This scene was particularly hilarious

It was well worth the 26 episodes and I quite enjoyed it, even with the lack of Shoujo-ai content.

Overall Rating: 7/10 (more detail as to why below, but contains spoilers)

Yuri Rating: 5/10

THERE ARE DIRE SPOILERS PAST THIS POINT. AJSHDAKLJSHDSJDAASDSADSADA

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