Yuri Manga: Poor Poor Lips, (プアプアLIPS), Volume 1

October 15th, 2008

Every once in a while, it’s extra nice to be completely, totally, utterly wrong. In the case of Poor Poor Lips, I’m pleased to say that I was completely, totally, utterly wrong. ^_^

I’ll admit that the art style of this manga does not appeal to me. I’ll never get past the hurdle of a 21-year old being drawn like a 6 year old. (I’m clearly a minority in this.) So, when I saw the cover I was quick on the draw to say “Blecch.” But the story itself was really quite cute and for once there was actually an inkling of lesbian identity and everything!

Nako is a poverty-stricken 21 year-old in desperate need of a job. She applies for a job at a jewelry store. When shop owner Ren identifies herself as a lesbian, the competition for the position evaporates, leaving only Nako. Ren asks her if her sexual orientation will be a problem, Nako sensibly replies that she’s not interested, so she doesn’t see any problem.

The comic is a a series of 4-koma strips, and range from beating Nako’s state of poverty to death (as in the strip where she’s about to eat bread crusts for lunch and is mistaken for feeding the birds) and to Ren’s privilege and her orientation. But never in a mean way. Nako’s not entirely naive, but she’s not entirely clueful either, which makes for a nice mix of goofy silly and plain funny.

As this volume draws to a close there’s no actual relationship or anything, but Ren’s become decidedly possesive about Nako these days. They’ve both found a place in their hearts for one another in a not uncomfortable or sexual tension-y way.

This manga isn’t going to break records in sales, but if Yen Press is looking to license a 4-koma series with *actual* Yuri content, this would make a safe bet, I’m thinking.


Art – 6 for me, 8 for people who like the style
Story – 8
Characters – 8
Yuri – 7
Service – 4 (some bathing situations and breast jokes)

Overall – 8

This was one of three series that surprised me this time around. But it was the most pleasant surprise by far considering my assumption that it would utterly suck. ^_^

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12 Responses

  1. Katherine says:

    Wow. o_o And I was actually looking forward to a scathing review (as they’re usually pretty funny ^^). I definitely want to read this title now, although for once, this is a case where I think that any English company that licenses this manga should change the cover to something that I can read in public… ^^;; (I expected something akin to a Yuri Loveless.) But really, who would have thought?

  2. I was really expecting to loathe this book. Based on the cover art I was ready to be skeeved in every direction. But amazingly, it was very entertaining and not icky at *all*.

  3. Anonymous says:

    That’s happy news. I hope this will see a US release. ^_^

  4. grace says:

    an overall score of 8? i’m impressed.
    i guess one can’t really judge a book by its cover.

  5. deanbcurtis says:

    Excellent review. It’s probably the Loser Yonkoma Fan in me, but I love that it’s expected, nay, inevitable for Yen Press to license it. That’s just delightful. Now, if only they’d acquire Sketchbook, as well.

  6. I wasn’t saying that Yen Press *will* license it – or that they are considering it – or that they have even *heard* of this manga. I was simply commenting that if Yen Press is ever in the market for a 4-koma with Yuri, this one would make a good choice for consideration.

  7. deanbcurtis says:

    Bit of a wire cross up. I meant that I like how Yen is mentioned despite not having any connection to it…yet.

  8. Anonymous says:

    A title like this one sounds really odd for my tastes, but I am kind of curious after this review…

    By the way, are you going to review Octave?

  9. Tomoyo says:

    Er… so 21-year old Nako is the tiny little red-headed girl on the cover?

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