I reviewed this for the Manga Minis column at Manga Recon, so you can check it out over there. It’s… it’s worth reading, I liked it, and I was fascinated by the relationship juggling and the fact that, should you choose, you can imagine the main character with either a guy or a girl in the end. This inevitably means that no decision is reached in the end, which is of course never a good thing.
But, you know, Boy Bands. I had to have N’Sync and Backstreet Boys playing while I wrote the review to get me in the mood.
Also, Hosoo is reading Hotel Africa in one of the bonus stories at the end. See, it’s so good that even other manga/manhwa characters read it.
Well… yeah. Everything was looking up. Even Hosoo was looking like he was beginning to get over his family troubles and come around to be happy again. And I thought all the problems with Jinwon’s family were taken care of.
What else happens? Hosoo has actually been marginalized. Well, at least a little. Much of the volume follows Jinwon and the success of his group (which is called Baby Mode, and it bothers me to no end seeing it abbreviated B.M.), and then the problems they have there, playing politics and dodging schemes and whatnot. Hosoo’s role is mostly about him being there for his brother’s girlfriend. And the girl who thought the two of them were dating.
Actually, Hosoo declares his undying love for a lot of people that aren’t Jinwon. Maybe the two of them aren’t the main couple. The story’s actually neglected their relationship a great deal.
There’s a massive cliffhanger at the end of this volume. I can’t get very excited about it, because as I said, I’ve been comparing this to Let Dai in my head, and this exact same thing happens at least twice in that series. But it’s still a good scare tactic, and… honestly, I can’t think of any other series I may have seen it in besides Let Dai.
One volume left. It’s still not out on Netcomics yet, but it looks like I’ll be satisfied at the end of the month.
Aww, this volume did everything I wanted it to. Jinwon got all the business with his family cleared up. There was some weirdness about his oldest brother beating the crap out of him when he found out he was in a band, and then something about his father and mother, and his favorite brother, the one he lives with, moving to America… you know, craziness. It was a little much, but I was happy with the way it was all handled.
Hosoo and Jinwon’s relationship still hasn’t been dealt with directly. They’ve been getting closer and closer as the series goes on, and it’s been pretty much unspoken until the very end of this volume. There still isn’t very much… solid, or confirmed between the two yet, but I don’t think that will be too far off.
Jinwon’s dance partner… well, the same way I thought Hosoo was pairing off with Soomin, it looked like Jinwon was really going to pair up with him. Both are clearly important to each other. Maybe that will still happen. Iljae still hasn’t given up.
Dana? Well, she pretty much dropped off the face of the Earth. She came back in this volume, but more as a friend to Soomin than anything else. The friendships between all the characters are quite good in this series, be they romantic or otherwise. Even if someone doesn’t wind up with the other person, it’s pretty clear that all the characters are… well, there for each other, which is a mark of quality.
Again, not “absolutely fantastic,” but I’m constantly comparing it to Let Dai in my head. There is very little that will fare well against that series, but Do Whatever You Want does a fine job in its way.
So… this volume doesn’t really improve anyone’s situation. Almost right up to the end, Jinwon and Hosoo miss each other again and again. I like the realistic take on Jinwon’s career, though. He’s a backup dancer for a singer who’s being promoted, and while he is getting a lot of praise, he’s not the star, and he’s not shooting to the top of the music industry anytime soon. He may make his debut, but if he does, it looks like it’ll be with the boy who got him the gig in the first place and not Hosoo.
Hosoo got much more serious about Soomin in this volume. The two got in a street fight, two-by-fours and all, and almost got in trouble with the police for something their attackers did. Soomin’s home life is also not great, but that at least was looking much better by the end of the volume. As for the situation between she and Hosoo… it’s almost official, and I’m a little confused. That’s okay, though.
Jinwon’s home life… well, there’s the twist for next volume.
Wow, this volume was super-sad. The plot device was a common one, and you sort of see it coming when Jinwon and Hosoo go to the party, but that doesn’t make its impact on the story any less, I guess.
Well, the volume doesn’t really end in a good place. As much as everything was moving forward last volume, things really ground to a stop in this one as far as character development and relationships go. Soomin and Hosoo are getting better and better together, but for all the wrong reasons. And… yeah. Things are super-sad.
It hasn’t reached “absolutely fantastic” territory yet, but it’s addictive enough. I’ll keep reading.
Well, I pretty much guessed about Dana’s bad-girl past. But Hosoo? His was kind of a surprise. I’m guessing neither will have much bearing on the present story, though.
I’m kind of glad Soomin didn’t turn out to be a bad girl, though. I like the quiet friendships that are developing between her and Dana and Hosoo and Jinwon. The relationships between the boys and girls aren’t progressing like I thought they would, though. Well, maybe a little bit for Jinwoo and Dana.
Hosoo and Jinwon’s living situations didn’t explode like I thought they would, either. At the moment, the sole point of contention seems to be a job that Jinwon landed. I can’t imagine Hosoo hating him for it, but he might hate him a little since the kid that set him up with it clearly has a crush on him.
But mostly it’s about the quiet friendships and relationships. I like the way they’re all escalating. The clear favorite is, of course, Jinwon and Hosoo, but the two girls are also great characters, too. It’s not fantastic yet, but it’s getting there, and I’m pretty excited to see where the characters wind up.
This is another title I decided to read off Netcomics, except this one IS available as a graphic novel. But… well, it only costs you a dollar if you pick it up online. I’ll probably pick up the graphic novels a little later, but I think I’m going to read all the available volumes tonight.
I realized I’m sort of fond of the type of shoujo series that develops the relationship between the two characters slowly. This is one such series. It’s specifically a Boy’s Love series, but as of the first volume, there are only heavy hints between the two main boys, along with female romantic interests lined up for both of them. My guess is that they’ll both start going out with the girls, then wind up with each other in the end. I’d say that’s a pretty safe bet.
In addition to the usual relationship drama stuff, there’s also some heavy issues both boys are dealing with in their lives. Both live with their older brothers. In Hosoo’s case, the reason is not explained, and in Jinwon’s case, it’s because his brother lives closer to school and he doesn’t get along with his mother. He also doesn’t get along with his oldest brother, but he seems to live with his other brother (?) along with a niece. Hosoo adoesn’t get along with his brother’s girlfriend (?). All of this just gets an introduction in the first volume, so I’m sure it’ll have cause for satisfying drama a little further down the road.
The only thing I think I didn’t like about it is its humor. I don’t mind a little levity when things are really serious, but I hate the super-deformed style of drawing, especially when used in excess. It’s not really excessive here, but it is used quite often. The light touch does go with Jinwon’s personality though, so it’s not terribly out of place.
The series is only seven volumes long. As much as I liked all the romantic tension in this first volume, it’s very likely I’ll tear through the rest in no time.