We discovered today that Toilet-Bound Hanako-kun has been steadily coming out without our knowledge. I don't know how this happened--I thought we'd been checking our publishers' sites regularly so we could stay up-to-date on releases. And when we fail that, usually Anime News Network helps us fill in the gaps. But! volume two of Toilet-Bound Hanako-kun came out on Halloween! Two months ago! And we had no idea! Also, volume three came out today...which is a Wednesday, so maybe that has something to do with it. Anyway, if there are any Hanako-kun fans out there who were just as in the dark as we were, now you know you can go pick up (digitally) volumes two AND three! Also, volume two has just been bumped up on the to-be-reviewed list, and we'll be posting that review next week. Very sorry for the delay.
But! since I already said last week that this week would be for Waiting for Spring, here it is, without further ado! Waiting for Spring volume three! Spoilers ahead.
This volume was a little hard because we translated it around San Diego Comic-Con. And I don't mean, "It was around the time of SDCC that we translated it," I mean literally (or as literal as you can get in this case), we worked on Waiting for Spring on both sides of Comic-Con. So two days before the con, we translated our first draft; the day before the con, we edited the first half of the script; and after we got back and recovered some, we finished it. So the first half of what happened was kind of erased by the events of Comic-Con and the accompanying excitement/stress/whathaveyou. But I'm sure it'll all come back to me as I type about it, right?
So it starts out...in Mitsuki's head. I think a lot of this volume took place in Mitsuki's head, so it may be hard to summarize in terms of story points. There was also a lot of, "So Mitsuki got this idea in her head, which made her awkward until this happened, but then she got this other idea in her head, which made her awkward until the next thing happened," etc. That's not to say I didn't enjoy it, just that it's hard to recap. In the first place, she was awkward because she was dreaming about Towa hugging her. It's really kind of cute.
There was the thing about rock-paper-scissors to decide who went to buy the drinks. It's not surprising, but still pretty sad, that Mitsuki is the only loser. If she would just have a little more faith in herself! Especially because everyone else did scissors, which is the most common way for people to start out a game of RPS. If she had just done rock, she would have been the champion! Oh well.
But anyway, Mitsuki is trying to figure out what she can do to support the basketball team in their basketballness, and thanks to Kyosuke, she's got some great ideas. And then! oh wow, I just remembered there's like a huge rivalry thing going on. I guess it just kind of fades into the background because Mitsuki's still so clueless about it. Poor Mitsuki. Poor Maki. Poor everybody. But anyway, then Maki from the girls' basketball team comes along and starts being a rival, but in such a subtle way that only Towa's friends have figured it out. And also, because of her being a rivalness, Maki has gotten herself into trouble with her teammates, because she used up all the team budget on unnecessary wristbands instead of necessarily replacing the team's banner. Fortunately, Mitsuki was already thinking of making a banner, so she offers to do it! Only now it's for the girls' team, but that's okay because it helps her prove she's legit and not one of the screaming fangirls. That was a pretty funny scene, too, actually, when Reina came along and "proved" that she wasn't one of "those" fans. And she's not, but... And you know, I bet if she could find like-minded fangirls, she could team up with Rui and make a mint on some exclusive photos.
So Mitsuki's happy that she can do some things for the team, but she still hasn't come up with anything to do for Towa in particular, which of course is what she really wanted to do all along. But fortunately, he comes along and basically confesses his love to her by asking her to do the good luck charm for him that only works when it's done by the person you have a crush on. Still, Mitsuki doesn't dare to hope. And meanwhile, she still has Aya to worry about--Aya, who shows up just in time to see Mitsuki and Towa holding hands after Towa got his wristband back. Dun dun DUN!
And then we have the most dramatic part of this volume! Gasp! Aya challenges Towa to a basketball duel, loser has to give up on Mitsuki! ...Actually, Aya only said he (Aya) would give up on Mitsuki if he lost, but he was sure he was going to win anyway...and I guess he's also sure he's going to win Mitsuki's heart, too. Anyway, it was nice of him not to make Towa promise to give up on Mitsuki. What gets me about it is this idea that Mitsuki is somehow going to automatically fall madly in love with whoever is better at basketball. Come on, guys. And apparently Mitsuki agrees, because she put a stop to all that nonsense. We guess they like the idea because it's an easier thing to measure than Mitsuki's love for either of them. I was actually a little sad that Mitsuki stopped them, though, because we kind of want Towa to beat Aya. We both like Aya pretty well as a character, but for me it's kind of in a "I want to see him fail" sort of way. I can't really explain it. I will say that he's fun to translate, especially because he has all these dramatic lines. "But I'm better." Ooh, so confident. And also I say, "Sure ya are." Actually, we really have no idea--they didn't have their duel. All we know is that Aya is in a magazine and Towa is not. But he is one of his team's star players. Or is that just because he's cute? We may never know, because this is the type of manga that's about basketball but not really. Basketball adjacent, perhaps. But I guess we'll see if that changes in the next volume.
I think after that is mostly a lot of angst about how Mitsuki and Towa don't know if the other one really loves them or not, but they can't talk to each other about it because they have other things to focus on and Towa has to practice and stuff. Fortunately, there are other characters to help that tediousness go by. For example, with Maki coming along and alllllllmost confessing her love to Towa. I will say the way the angst came about was pretty cute. With Kyosuke being all "if he only liked you as a friend, he wouldn't have been doing that
," and Rui being all, "Towa and that girl..." And Towa's reaction! Awwwwwwwww!
The last chapter gets more exciting as we get ready for the big first local game! Oooohhhh! And apparently there's going to be some superstar player they have to battle against. But before that! Aya talks to Mitsuki and lets her know once and for all that no, he's not teasing her, he really does love her and he doesn't care who she has a crush on now because he intends to change that. Dun dun DUN!
And that's all. This volume was kind of a "whoa" one in that there weren't a whole lot of major challenges, which is like super unique. I think there was one line that held us up...the one about the mismatched captains? And we did have to stop and think about when Mitsuki told Towa not to let her cheering scare him off. The word she used--and we thought about writing a note about this, but we figured what we had was close enough to the original Japanese--was one that's usually used to indicate, like, when someone makes a major social fuax pas and people are like, "I don't know them." But it's also used to mean "retreat" or "back down." So when Towa says he won't be scared, he's simultaneously saying that her yelling won't make him stop being her friend, and
he won't back down from any challenge that might come from, say, an old friend who's suddenly returned.
And speaking of not writing a note about that! we didn't write any notes at all! We told our editor to let us know if she thinks we should note anything (like maybe the rainy season, but what is there to note? rainy seasons happen all kinds of places, don't they? (says the girl who lives in a very non-rainy desert)), so that might change, but as of this writing, there were no translation notes. Everything just seemed pretty straightforward and universal.
Anyway, the series continues to be enjoyable. We hope you all like it!
Aww, what a nice series. I think we'll be working on volume...five? Six? Probably six...next week. Yeah, six.
Anyway, as previously noted, this week's releases include Toilet-Bound Hanako-kun volume 3!, as well as...nothing! Hanako-kun is the only thing this week. (The pause was for us to go check and make sure. I'm still not 100% sure, but I'm sure enough.)
And tune in next week, for our review of Toilet-Bound Hanako-kun 2!
Today I'm thankful for finding out that Hanako-kun in English is still a thing, making decent progress on work, Page posing so majestically in her heated cat bed, still having some of those delicious chocolate Christmas cookies from Costco, and the beautiful weather we've been having.