By Leroy Douresseaux
Dec 28, 2008 - 12:30
|Meeting You cover image is courtesy of animecastle.com.|
“18+ Mature Content”
The handsome rogue, Himeshiro, dates both males and females, so when the shy and timid Touru Onozuka blurts out that he loves him, Himeshiro decides to have some means-spirited fun. Deciding to see how far Touru will go, Himeshiro sets up a series of tasks and trials that Touru must complete to prove his love. But who will the humiliation really hurt?
When Ryuichi Sakuma came on hard to his friend Keigo Senken, Keigo reacted with such shock that Ryuichi went away and disappeared. Three years later, Keigo discovers that “How to Find a Gentle Kiss,” has been closer all along than he realized. When Shunpei Machida gets a bottle of water from a stranger after he nearly succumbs to a choking fit, he finds himself smitten. Now he finds joy in “Mornings at the Bus Stop,” waiting for Kaoru Touhon, the man who calls Shunpei, “Pochi,” as if he were a pet dog.
THE LOWDOWN: It’s oh-so-cute and maybe too heartwarming, but Meeting You, a collection of yaoi short stories by Mio Tennohji, is a fun, quick read. Because manga are a graphic storytelling form, Tennohji uses her art for more than just creating pretty boys in pretty pictures simply for superficiality. Playing up the seme/uke dynamic (seme=boy on top and uke-boy on bottom), she creates tall, handsome young men and petite, bishounen (beautiful boy) males that drive the narrative, define character, and establish setting.
In Meeting You, the handsome, athletic-looking seme have narrow eyes, perfect for delivering that seductive stare, but not so narrow that they don’t widen when the charming rogues become repentant boys. The androgynous uke, especially Touru with his unisex haircut, are doe-eyed and long-suffering. They’ll put up with anything, even when being handled roughly by the lustful seme.
She might be a lightweight with the execution of the stories in Meeting You, but Tennohji makes excellent use of the tropes of yaoi manga. This volume is indeed short (with only four full-length tales), and is definitely sweet.
POSSIBLE AUDIENCE: With its traditional leanings, Meeting You, is for the traditional yaoi audience – women.
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