Yuri Manga: Comic Yuri Hime (コミック百合姫) May 2011

May 16th, 2011

Another excellent volume of Comic Yuri Hime (コミック百合姫). At this point, the magazine is balanced pretty well for me, by which I mean there’s about half stuff I like and half I don’t. It’s good that there’s stories I don’t much care for, because it gives people with different tastes than my own a chance to enjoy the magazine, as well.

“Justice For Girls” starts off on the cover once again. This time, we’re back at the high school in which all students carry firearms and shoot at each other. A girl is in love with her class representative. Did I mention they carry guns? Well, they carry guns. My favorite line comes in the beginning, when the class representative, Kotono, describes Hisami’s gun and mentions how annoying it is. Good writing, because I found her gun annoying too.

Of course the opening story in this volume is “Yuru Yuri” with a ton of info about the anime.

Among the most memorable series for me were:

Uso Kurata’s “Yuri Danshi” adds a fourth girl to the fantasy Yuri team in Hanadera-kun’s head, and offers a variety of new Yuri fantasy scenarios to his delusional brain. When he confronts Matsuoka and tells her he’ll be her ally, she replies with a strong hook to the eye. I loved Matsuoka at that moment. ^_^ But…maybe Hanadera wasn’t wrong after all?…. …. ….

“Start Line” by Nanzaki Iku is a nice look at tension between two girls who never spoke while they were in school together. Will this continue? I certain hope so.

Tanaka Minoru writes a vampire story with an ironic twist in “Vampire Girl.”

Ah ha! I was right after all and I’m not that happy about it. “DNA Double XX” by Zaou Taishi and Eiki Eiki is doing exactly what I thought it was going to do and I’m vexed all over again. OTOH, I trust them to balance it, so it doesn’t just become a fake-BL story. I really feel quite strongly about this, because BL has some tropes I find strongly unappealing and I really hope they’ll avoid those. On the other hand, I very much liked Aoi’s challenge to Sakura for being so utterly dumb that it was funny. I’m trusting them…I’m trusting them.

Minamoto Hisanari’s “Fu~Fu” follows Kina’s older sister Kana, as she deals with something she’s not used to – failure with a girl.

“Renai Joshikka” was Morishima Akiko at her finest. This is a woman’s perspective, looking back at the turn of the century, and youthful behavior, and  grimacing. ^_^ This chapter introduces some new characters in our all-lesbian Wedding Boutique. For the first time, the issue of…ready?…same-sex marriage…is broached in Comic Yuri Hime. Rah! Rah! Morishima-sensei!

The story that blew me away though, was a surprise. I didn’t much much like Momono Moto’s earlier works, but “Aru Shoujo no Gunjou” was fantastic. A high school girl finds herself drawn into the life of a female couple and witnesses their break-up, and becomes part of the solution to healing. Although there were some very typical plot points here, the story worked as a whole.

Kowo Kazuma offers a solid give and take between two girls in “3-Second Rule,” which is a great title. The 3-second rule is simply -if you ask a girl to go out and she doesn’t answer in 3 seconds, cut your losses and move on.

And last for me, if not for the magazine, was a side story from the “Itoshii Hito” series, about Nana’s second chance to apologize to Youko for rejecting her years ago.

Overall, a strong volume with a lot to like. The more experienced creators are really coming up with characters we can care about, and there’s less and less reliance on the tropes of “Story A.” I think we can safely say that Comic Yuri Hime is growing up nicely. ^_^

Overall – 9

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