The act of combining three volumes in one omnibus format has become popular among companies seeking to move their lesser known titles. With a price that reflects two manga volumes for the price of one, the format is at the very least an auspicious effort that saves consumers money and allows them a larger sampling of a given work. Yen Press has apparently decided to try on the treatment for some of their own titles with Dragon Girl being among the first wave of titles.
Dragon Girl depicts the life of Rinna Aizen, an eccentric teenage girl, whose dream is to follow her father’s path and attend Shoryu Senior High, a former all-boys school her dad went to. Because of her feisty personality, Rinna finds herself in a couple of rows with the council president, Renji Toushouguu and the captain of the cheering squad, Hasekura. It would appear that the male populace of the school is rather condescending toward the female half, prompting Rinna to petition for change, with her first order of business being taking over leadership of the cheer squad. Unfortunately she isn’t able to wrestle the reins from Hasekura but is begrudgingly accepted as a member anyway due to her father being a former captain himself.
Throughout the volume, we see the cheer squad engaged in a number of humorous scenarios, including meeting the cheerleader squad that is captained by a cross dresser as well as introduced to some of Rinna’s friends and childhood crush. Rinna eventually wins over her fellow squad but still contends with the student council president who stacks as many obstacles in her way as possible.
Dragon Girl is a shojo series and features the artwork to match. The pages are populated with handsome guys with sparkling eyes and puckered lips and ultra thin girls with wavy hair. The pencil work is rather simplistic and quite average compared to other works such as Kobato and Vampire Knight. This isn’t to say it’s bad but it is lacking.
Like the art, Dragon Girl isn’t at the top of the pack. Its story, though well written, isn’t anything we haven’t seen before but a colorful cast featuring depth and realistic motivations allows the series to overcome these shortcomings to some degree. It also helps that the volume delivers a hefty amount of content for a reasonable price.