I can’t stop staring at this cover. So I’m going to make you stare at it.
The Man of Tango – the final is being re-released on 1/15. This is no mere reprint. There’s lots of new material, including a newly drawn 23 page final chapter and 34 pages of material not collected in the previous mellow mellow comics version. This is truly the final, definitive copy of The Man of Tango and not to be missed!
I’m chipping away at my backlog of additions to the Oyaji BL Primer with three new titles: Mada Ai ga Tarinai (the working man), Shinjuku Lucky Hole (the bad boy), and Negaigoto wa Hidamari de (now that’s an old man!).
Mada Ai ga Tarinai by Nishida Higashi
Inoue Masayuki is a middle-aged, divorced HR manager with a surprising problem–there’s an anonymous complaint accusing the talented, younger manager Kitahara Akihiko of sexual harassment. Inoue approaches Kitahara to investigate and just when his suspicions start to clear, a nude photo of Kitahara is sent to his cell phone. A cat-and-mouse game evolves between the two–Inoue can’t dismiss, yet won’t be easily fooled or manipulated by Kitahara. And Kitahara sent the nude pic himself–to lure Inoue into bed.
It’s fun watching Inoue’s conflicting attraction grow into determination to show Kitahara that he has more appeal than just money and good sex. Even the scheming Kitahara can be oblivious and caught off-guard.
Shinjuku Lucky Hole by Kumota Haruk0
Hiyama Kumi is a former porn star who manages an adult film company with his partner, Sakuma. They met in a non-traditional manner. In order to repay his father’s debt to the yakuza, Kumi was sent to live and be “trained” by Sakuma so the young Kumi could appear in gay films. Eventually, Kumi starts to develop feelings for Sakuma and schemes to release him from the yakuza world.
Kumi is indebted to Sakuma, who lets others know that Kumi is his. Sakuma is intimidating and possessive in his own way. Kumi may sleep with people for a living, but crossing over that professional line into personal feelings is a good way to bring out his scary, threatening yakuza side. They have an interesting dynamic, both in their past and present. The present storyline features them as two hot oyaji, of course.
Negaigoto wa Hidamari de by Katsuragi
Nakakouji Tomohiko and Shiomi Haruhito have been friends all their lives. Now in their 50’s, Tomohiko blurts out that he wants Shiomi to marry him. Thinking his secret crush on Tomohiko is blown, Shiomi panics. However, Tomohiko just needed some help to deflect a marriage proposal. Now that the secret is out, will it ruin or transform their long companionship? It’s a bit comical and very sweet story about “silver love.”
The digital magazine Oyajism has provided another title for the Oyaji Romance Manga Selections. While not every title fits, it’s a fantastic resource. Ichiban Nagai Yoru wo Yoroshiku is one of their more popular titles.
Ichiban Nagai Yoru wo Yoroshiku by Takyu Yoko
length: 1 volume (ongoing)
Nagaoka Sachiko is a 27 year old woman whose live-in boyfriend abruptly left her. A coworker drags her out to a club to meet some fresh men. She bumps into an older man who turns out to be the fairly popular DJ, Carlos. They talk and get to know each other a bit. However, Sachiko doesn’t realize she’s already met this man.
By day, the DJ is her incredibly awkward and bizarrely dressed boss, Karube. The female workers treat Karube with considerable disgust (that is mostly undeserved!), including Sachiko. So it’s quite a shock when Sachiko learns they are the same man. He never hid that fact and there was never a good time to break it to her that the seemingly very different men were actually the same person. This little bit of drama is over fairly quickly and it moves onto her learning more about his not-so-different sides, forming a relationship, and dealing with past relationships. Sachiko is typically self-reliant and level-headed, so she has to learn to let go a bit and trust in this seemingly not very confident, bumbling man.
The oyaji: Karube Saburou
Karube is 47 years old and recently divorced. His confidence decimated, he over-compensates, which can lead to more problems and misunderstandings. He’s a fair and helpful boss, even if the women avoid direct eye contact because of his horrific dress and unassertive manner.
Karube loves music and moonlights as a DJ. While he wears nice clothes at the club and is popular with the ladies, if you look closely, his bad taste creeps in and the prints can be a bit off.
Posted in Manga
Tagged josei, Takyu Yoko
Koban is a simple, yet very entertaining series by Ishikawa Chika. I was first drawn to her eye-catching art style and boldly colored covers, but stayed for the fun and endearing characters. She might be my favorite new (to me) mangaka of this past year. So I’m going to introduce you (the whole three of you who might actually care about this type of manga, ha) to the police comedy, Koban.
Another Oyajism title makes its way into the Oyaji Romance Manga: Amatsu Sora Naru. I thought reading this title would be a chore because there’s a lot of specialized terminology I’m not familiar with, ranging from the characters’ Kansai-ben to specific terms associated with tea ceremony and traditional Japanese clothing. However, I managed and even enjoyed because it flowed naturally and I was able to fill in (and look up) the blanks. The best part of the manga is the lovely clothing–true to the story’s theme, the main characters are seen in both traditional and Western outfits.
Amatsu Sora Naru by Mori Hinoto
type: josei, romance
length: 1 volume (complete)
Chidori is the heir to a household that has practiced Japanese tea ceremony for generations, but she has no personal interest in these traditions or carrying on the family business. She’s more enamored with modern and foreign trends and attends an American university. However, she’s called back to Japan and has to endure her strict mother and uncomfortable, constricting kimono.
Chidori meets a local kimono merchant and cleaner, Saiuchi Tsumugi. Although Tsumugi always maintains a polite smile, his words are sharp and he’s not shy about sharing criticism. Although a bit harsh and hard to read, he never completely rebuffs Chidori. She is intrigued by Tsumugi, always finding herself drawn back to his shop. But before she can get to know him better, she has to deal with her mother’s plans for an arranged marriage. With Tsumugi’s (not particularly gentle) encouragement, Chidori has to assert herself and decide her own future.
The oyaji: Saiuchi Tsumugi
42 years old. His store sells and cleans kimono. He’s not a dry cleaner–his shop practices the arai hari cleaning method in which the kimono is taken apart, the panels are washed separately, and then resewn together. Although he’s quite skilled in traditional practices and often seen wearing kimono, he has interest and experience in foreign affairs and culture. Chidori’s mother offhandedly warned her not to become interested in Tsumugi, which was a bit of a mystery.
I have a literal pile of oyaji BL manga stacked on top of a bookshelf that I need to add to my oyaji BL list. Instead of adding to that never shrinking pile, I’m going to try more timely additions as I read the manga (and before I forget the details). So here’s a quick addition: Bamford Koushakuke no Shitsuji (aka The House Steward of the Bamford Marqis House) by Ike Reibun.
The steward from No.99: Ningen Omocha gets his own (very porny) love story. While Graham appears cold and stern on the outside, he has quite a salacious affair with one of the butlers, Alex. Is Alex just a toy or will the unflappable countenance crack when someone else threatens to claim Alex? Either way, it’s Ike Reibun, so expect dirty sex and lovely period costumes. The best part of the manga is Graham’s character: he’s a shrewd guy with a monocle and princess curls ponytail.
Posted in Manga
Tagged ike reibun
Here’s a late addition to the Oyaji Romance Manga Selections that I mentioned months ago: Ojikoi. While Ojikoi is available for free at Hana to Yume Online now, a print volume will be released this January! So to celebrate, here’s its official inauguration to the oyaji lovin’ list:
Ojikoi by Tsutsumi Kakeru
type: shoujo, comedy
length: 0 volumes (ongoing)
Ojikoi is a rare treat–it’s a shoujo manga that features a romance with an older man. While josei and BL have a dedicated and expanding oyaji niche, shoujo manga lags behind. But Ojikoi is a great start.
Sanjou Arashi (nicknamed “Ran-chan”) is a high school student who works part time at an agency that does private investigations and odd jobs. She’s quite serious and has a strong sense of responsibility that offsets her boss, Kageyama, a man seemingly more interested in goofing off and smoking than running the place. Being a smart girl, Ran starts to notice that this isn’t quite true. The boss can be quite reliable and she’s drawn to the kindness hidden beneath his eccentricities.
“What, did you fall for me?”
The oyaji: Kageyama Kiichi
Kageyama smokes, likes pachinko, and is quite messy. He runs his own small agency and while he’s immature and irresponsible at times, he does try to take care of Ran. If he doesn’t keep her out of trouble, he’ll at least pull her out of it after she finds trouble!
Kageyama is great at throwing out mixed signals. After sharing a brief, spontaneous, and chaste kiss, he acts like nothing is different, much to Ran’s frustration. However, when Ran takes his flippant offer to sit in his lap while watching fireworks, his composure is visibly shaken. Ran asked what his first name was and he replied that it was a secret and he’ll tell her once she becomes an adult. He likes being called “boss.”