So Cute It Hurts Vol. 15 Review

Title: So Cute It Hurts Vol. 15
Author: Go Ikeyamada
Publisher: Viz Media
Language: English
Format: Paperback
Pages: 192
Genre: Shojo, Romance
Publication Date: October 3, 2017

The Story & Characters

We have finally reached the end of So Cute It Hurts. The story analysis won’t be very long because the final volume simply moves time forward to see how everyone’s lives pan out. Also, the story advancements are also the final developments of the characters in the series, which is why I’m putting the two sections together rather than keeping them separate. If I kept them separate, I would just be repeating the same thoughts in both sections.

The biggest emphasis was placed on Mego and Aoi, as we knew it would be. It begins with their wedding and ends with a ten month time skip when Mego gives birth to their daughter which was the result of their wedding night. Mego’s ambition is to be gentle like her mom and strong like her father. Mego names their daughter Ibuki, which means “to bud” like a flower would start as a bud and bloom into something beautiful. In another time skip, it is revealed that Mego becomes a manga artist and gets serialized in a monthly magazine.

Shino ends up getting married as well to the person she began dating. Unless I am mistaken, this is the first time in the series that we actually get to see her boyfriend. In a bittersweet moment for myself, Mitsuru and Shino have a moment where Shino finally realized that the locket he gave her so very long ago meant that Mitsuru was in love with her. After realizing what it meant, she tells Mitsuru that she “really, really likes him” too. Sadly, it’s way too late as Shino just got married and is pregnant with a child of her own. Shino ends up becoming a writer and even won awards in her first year!

As for Mitsuru, he and Azsua get permission from her dad to get married. Azusa is continuing to work hard to succeed her father and Mitsuru is working along with her.

So Cute It Hurts comes to a close at some point in the future when all of their children are gathered. A children’s book about penguins is read to them by Akane, Aoi and Shino’s daughter who was rescued from the earthquake, now five years ago at this point in the story. It tells the story of a blue penguin who saves a deaf purple penguin from an enemy and injures his eye. He leaves the other penguins to go live alone until, one day, a pink penguin falls in love with him. The story is, essentially, Shino, Aoi and Meg0’s story. When Akane finishes reading the book, the series comes to an end.

Final Thoughts

When I read the premise for So Cute It Hurts over two years ago, I thought it would be a romantic comedy, which is one of my favorite genres. It actually started out that way, but then it blossomed into something more than that. What began as a brother and sister crossdressing as each other in order to help Mitsuru improve his grades turned into a lifetime experience.

At times, I felt the series was a little too perfect. Mego and Aoi’s story didn’t have much conflict in it and any conflict that did arise was taken care of rather quickly and painlessly. They didn’t really have a lot of challenges to their relationship which made it seem a bit too convenient. Not a lot of relationships go that smoothly, but I guess it shows that sometimes things like this can happen and love can conquer all.

I’m still bitter over the pairing of Mitsuru and Azusa. Ikeyamada-sensei started to tease Mitsuru and Shino perfectly. Azusa was merely a generic tsundere and I couldn’t envision Mitsuru ever being with her. Azsua bullying Shino and Mitsuru coming to the rescue painted a perfect picture to get those two together with Mitsuru being her protector, but the series took the Shino character and just sent her packing to an unknown person. It was barely even touched upon after she disappeared and it was at that moment I knew that Mitsuru would end up with Azusa. Still, that moment they shared here in the final volume was like a big middle finger to Shino fans. It’s the one facet of this story that I just can’t forgive!

Despite that, this was a great series that I enjoyed from beginning to end. It was a series that took you on an emotional roller coaster and I believe it ended the right way. If all of the time skips were too fast of made you wanting more, there are some bonus chapters after the ending which fill in some of those gaps, such as the time when Mitsuru was 19 and in college. Not a lot of series will try and fill in their gaps, but Ikeyamada does so and the extra material is very worth your time! It’ll be a bit sad that I won’t be able to read any new volumes of So Cute It Hurts, but I look forward to Ikeyamada’s next work!

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This item was provided for review by Viz Media

About The Author

Josh Piedra

Josh (or J.J. as some have come to call him), is a long-time geek culture enthusiast with a deep passion for anime, manga and Japanese culture. Josh also has a Bachelor of Arts in Game Design and is a creative writer who has created original content for over 20 years! He is also the author of the original English light novel Final Hope.