Title:Miss Miyazen Would Love to Get Closer to You Vol. 1 Author: Akitaka Publisher: Kodansha Comics Language: English Format: Paperback Pages: 146 Genre: Romance, Comedy Publication Date: September 27, 2022
That is the best word to describe this series! Miyazen is a high school girl that has a crush on Matsubayashi, a rough and gruff-looking boy who sits behind her in class. She studied all of his interests and discovers that he’s into yakuza films. She ends up throwing out some random quotes which he picks up on but he can’t believe that someone like her would be into that kind of stuff so he just brushes it off.
Little by little they inch closer over the first volume but there is some hilarity along the way. On the first day of class, Miyazen introduces herself and due to the school she came from, she is pinned as a princess who happens to be loaded with cash. Matsubayashi, on the other hand, came from a school full of delinquents. Some even know his former nickname, The Mountain Breaker. Because of this, a lot of kids are scared to talk to him. Miyazen even receives advice from a friend saying not to hang around someone like him because people would get the wrong idea. Her friend meant that they might see her as a troublemaker but she thinks that it meant that they would be seen as dating!
Little miscues like that continue to happen throughout the first volume but the underlying story is that both of them are exactly the same but in their own different ways. They look to conquer their awkwardness around each other so that they can end up together… whether that be as friends or as a couple.
The biggest focus lies on our two main characters.
Matsubayashi is your average-looking boy with blond hair and a smug look on his face. He doesn’t have a lot of social skills so he comes off as very approachable. He forgot something in a science lab and when a student returned it, he bolted before he could even be thanked. That’s the kind of aura Matsubayashi gives off. However, he is the classic example of not judging a book by its cover because he’s actually pretty chill, laid-back, and very self-conscious about his image. He doesn’t want people to get the wrong impression about him and he even hates his Mountain Breaker nickname that he received.
He’s just an average boy with feelings because he gets nervous whenever Miyazen is around him. Whenever she’s close or if they make physical contact, his heart pounds just like any other average teenage boy. The whole misconception around him is part of the comedy in this series but he’s kind of a dunce when it comes to girls flirting with him. I’m really enjoying him as a main character. I already want to smack him upside the head and spell it out for him because he can’t do it on his own!
Miyazen, on the other hand, is dense in her own ways. She’s very detail-oriented but even though she can write the lines, she can’t read between them. Because of her infatuation with Matsubayashi, anything she’s told, she relates it to love and dating. As aforementioned with her friend warning her about ruining her image, she thought it meant dating. Even when they were up on the school roof and the teacher came to inspect, she hid because she mistook it as them dating as well when all Matsubayashi meant was for her to not get caught and get in trouble.
Outside of her ineptness, you can see just how hard she’s trying to get the message across that she likes him. She has already gone out of her way to watch yazuka movies, she put forth the courage to try and talk to him outside of typical morning greetings, and she’s worrying about every little details. The amount of effort she’s putting in makes you want to root for her but because of the advice she received (and misinterpreted), she now has a goal to become good friends with Matsubayashi rather than his girlfriend! With this being a short series, I’m sure that right there is going to be an end-game hurdle to overcome and that’s why you want to root for her!
Just as I started off this review… this was cute from beginning to end. The chapters are really short as they jammed 15 of them into 146 pages which makes it seem like a 4-koma but just extended. Nothing is episodic, though. It is a progressive story but the scenarios are a bit unique for each chapter. Still, these two play off of one another fantastically and keep you wanting to read more! Watching them grow closer, even if minutely, is pretty satisfying because you can see and feel the progress that’s being made. Oftentimes, romance manga will develop characters a bit more slowly and not much progress is made in a single volume. Here, you’re getting that sense of progression with every chapter but the pace is controlled in such a way that the progress isn’t happening quickly or feels forced and overburdened.
I picked up this series on a whim after seeing it in my Twitter feed. I literally read the title and thought it was cute. I read the synopsis and thought it was interesting and now, I’m reading and enjoying it. Impulse buying works out sometimes!
As I mentioned, this is a short series. There will only be four total volumes and two of them are out now. The first volume really hooked me so I’m going to stick with this one and see how it all plays out! The only thing that would make me feel like this would be a waste of time is if it goes the non-ending ending route. I’m hoping for a solid conclusion here but we will see. So far, it’s great and I can tell I’m really going to enjoy this one! Pick it up and give it a chance if you’re into romantic comedies!
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