15 May 2013

Uwasa no Midori-Kun manga review

Warning: Advised readers are 18+ due to some explicit content
English: The Rumoured Midori-kun!!
Synonyms: Uwasa no Midori-kun!!, Shounen x Cinderella
Type: Manga
Volumes: 10
Chapters: 44
Status: Finished
Published: 2006 to 2008
Genres: Drama, Romance, Shoujo, Sports, Gender Bender
Authors: Ikeyamada, Go (Story & Art)
Serialization: Sho-Comi

Uwasa no Midori-kun! is a great Shoujo, Sports, Gender Bender, Romance that should not be overlooked, due to its hilarious comedy and heated romance. Though it would have been better if the sports gender bender aspect were more realistic (like the movie ‘She’s the Man’), rather than your typical shoujo romance.

The story follows the high jinks of our tomboy heroine (Midori Yamate), who wants to seek revenge on the guy she once loved and admired (Hino Tsukasa), by entering an all-boys High School and joining their soccer team. It isn’t long until her ploy involves an unsuspecting guy from the soccer club (Kazuma Shinbashi) and they work together to keep her secret. From reading this I’m sure you’ve already guessed the kind of manga this is; a sports gender bender about a girl trying to enter a boy’s world but eventually it becomes a fully blown shoujo romance. The story can be very cliché and unrealistic at times, seeing how Midori is the most unconvincing boy ever. Nevertheless if you can ignore these imperfections then you’ll certainly enjoy this manga for its romance, full of surprising developments.

I must say that Gou Ikeyamada must enjoy doing love triangles, because here we get just that. The story mostly revolves around pretty much the only girl in this manga Midori, who’s an interesting change from all the typical shoujo leads. Not to forget the guys; Hino the malicious, sleazebag type and Kazuma the straight-laced, gentleman type. Also there are quite a lot of important side characters, probably enough to make up 2 soccer teams, so getting to know them all is a major feat.

If you’re just coming from this mangaka’s previous work (Moe Kare!!), then you can expect the same old typical shoujo style artwork. The characters are all pretty cute in their own defined way; however I think it spends too much time in chibi form, just for comic appeal.

Overall Uwasa no Midori-kun! without doubt is a very enjoyable shoujo romance manga to read, with plenty of laughs to be had, but it really sucks at being a gender bender. Also the whole revenge thing never really gets off the ground, because she spends most the time smitten over the guy she supposedly hates. It’s a shame that more focus was put into the romance and typical shoujo devices (e.g. emotions) than into actually recreating a realistic game of soccer.

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