Alethea & Athena (double_dear) wrote,
Alethea & Athena

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Yesterday, it was requested that we write up our thoughts on Yukina's moral code (a la Missions of Love), so I guess we'll do that today. I'm having a bit of a hard time concentrating, though, because I'm really ticked off after spending like an hour trying to figure out the hotel that best meets our proximity/transportation and price needs for the half marathon Celeste and Sarah are running in in about a week and a half. For crying out loud, if the event is in a week and a half, I think the hotels listed as "good neighbor hotels" should know something about it by now!

Anyway, let's see if I have enough focus to type this out.

First, there's something we want to clear up because we were looking to see if anyone'd reviewed volume two yet, and we found a review of volume one that we hadn't read yet, and it said something that was blatantly false! Or at least not correct. It was like, "My only problem with the translation was that they did a few things to smooth it out for an American audience," and we were like, "What." I think I've made it pretty clear that while we're okay with some localization, we don't really have the creativity to do a lot of it ourselves, and we're purists, so we much prefer translation notes. So when they listed an example, we rushed to check its validity. There's one part toward the beginning of the book where Yukina notes that a girl has cut her hair. Apparently this person had read a scanslation that said she did it as a sign that she was hoping to get a boyfriend (a fact which was apparently observed by Yukina). But we had "localized" it to say she did it to look like her favorite model, thus losing the foreshadowing, because this was the same girl that confessed her love to Shigure later.

So we pulled out out Japanese copy of volume one, and lo and behold, Yukina's observation was that she was trying to look like her favorite model. We suggested to this person (via a comment which may or may not have actually been posted to the review) that the dialogue had been changed, because maybe before the graphic novel came out, the author or an editor thought if Yukina really has no clue about romance, she wouldn't know that there's a Japanese tradition of girls cutting their hair as a sign of getting (or wanting to get) a boyfriend (a tradition that we were completely unaware of; we know of one where people cut their hair after a heartbreak, which seems like kind of the opposite thing...). We suspect the scanslation was wrong, but since we haven't seen the original Nakayoshi printing, there's no telling. And I just have to say argh. Argh.

Anyway, as for Yukina and her ethics. There was a review at Anime News Network where the reviewer seemed almost livid that this manga should exist, because Yukina is constantly forcing Shigure to do things that he's obviously uncomfortable with, and if the genders were reversed, people would be horrified, so why should Yukina get away with it just because she's a girl? (We kind of extrapolated that last questiony part. There also seemed to be something about how if the genders had been reversed it would be just like any typical shoujo manga, so we're actually a little confused as to the reviewer's exact point, which is why we extrapolated that question. We could be wrong, though.)

On the forums, somebody pointed out that it's not the actions themselves that Shigure is uncomfortable with (and that person is right; Yukina starts with hand-holding, and she got the idea because she heard Shigure had held a different girl's hand), but the fact that his having to do them means he's lost and Yukina has won. Good job, observant reader! On the other hand, it was pretty clear that he was genuinely uncomfortable with the idea of kissing. That's probably for reasons that become clearer as the series moves on. Another thing that becomes clearer just a little bit later on is that Yukina is under the impression that if she can just get that kiss, she'll know everything she needs to know about romance, and then she'll be done with Shigure and nobody needs to worry too much about her going any further.

But the main thing that bothered us was this perception that Yukina clearly has no morals because she obviously has no qualms about blackmailing Shigure and forcing him to do her bidding (read: making him her sex slave). We were like, "Oh reviewer. You clearly weren't paying any attention." Obviously the summary or something had hit a trigger (that would probably be our fault, since we wrote the cover copy...) that clouded her judgment and she wasn't able to catch all the details that tell her she's not entirely correct.

Yukina would not have done this to just anyone. When she's first trying to figure out how to get the experience with romance she needs, she's already at a loss because she only knows one guy, and she'd feel bad making him experiment with her. She chose Shigure because she discovered that he's the one apparently devoid of morals, and so he deserves any unpleasantness she chooses to inflict upon him. The fact that she specifically chooses the scum of the earth is interesting, too. Either she realizes she's not the ideal girlfriend and suspects any guy would rather stay out of it, or she knows that, since she doesn't have the capacity to feel romantic love, she's reluctant to risk hurting the feelings of a more decent guy. Of course, her drive to get this information despite having to resort to blackmail means that she's not the purest character herself, but one of the things we like about this series is the growth the characters go through.

I think that about covers it, but of course we're happy to discuss anything we missed.

Today I'm thankful for finally having a hotel booked for the half marathon thingie, friendly phone people, getting a shipping confirmation from Kinokuniya, the Baked Ruffles successfully curing our sugar overload (especially important because we still have to finish that fondue), and having more fondue to look forward to.
Tags: missions of love

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