365 Days of Manga, Day 22: The Devil Within! Plus Much More Craziness!


461-1.jpgTHE DEVIL WITHIN (Tenshi no Naka ni Akuma ari, “The Devil within the Angel”) (?????????) • Ryou Takagi • Go! Comi (2007) • Shinshokan (Wings, 2003-2005) • 2 volumes • Shôjo Fantasy Romantic Comedy • 16+ (constant sexual situations)
Rion is a teenage girl with a shotacon fetish, who fears sex and only likes prepubescent boys. (“Those big, pure, innocent eyes! Their firm, young bodies, all smooth and almost hairless!”) When her father Satan Ryuzaki tries to set her up with three tall, manly fiancés, she rejects them and falls in love with her neighbor Tenshi, who looks like a five-year-old. Except that the three fiancés aren’t human–they’re angels! With evil, seductive split personalities! And Tenshi is a seducer too! Throwing out absurd, often supernatural twists and dirty sex-comedy humor at an amazing rate, The Devil Within is at times hilarious, although the artist’s short attention span prevents any one plot element from sticking. For a shojo manga, it’s extremely smutty and sometimes borderline nonconsensual, but its tongue-in-cheek quality and imagination make it more fun than uncomplicated bodice-rippers such as King of the Lamp. The art style changes noticeably over the course of just two volumes, the male characters becoming increasingly dissolute-looking showing a yaoi/bishonen influence.
*** (three stars)
This one is a borderline three stars — some people absolutely despise it, and the second volume isn’t as good as the first — but I’m going to give it the thumbs up for its sheer perverseness. When a manga makes my jaw drop this much, I can’t help but be impressed. Then again, I was “impressed” by Enmusu and Eiken for their own extreme bad taste, and I gave Eiken zero stars. (But when I interviewed the creator of Eiken for Otaku USA Magazine, I have to admit, I was impressed by his candor, not to mention his balls for saying his biggest influence was Hayao Miyazaki. -_- )
Today’s winner is Matt E. of Colorado! Congratulations, Matt! We also have a new photo from a winner, from Kelsey W. of Ohio! Kelsey’s photo is on facebook, so you need to log in to a facebook account to see it, but for those who aren’t on FB, here she is with her manga spoils!
Congratulations, Kelsey! More yaoi manga is on the way!
In other news… Christopher Mautner of Robot 6 and its infamous Shelf Porn column just did a feature about 365 Days of Manga. Go behind the link to find out where I’m storing my manga nowadays! (Spoiler: Due to space restrictions, I’m now keeping a lot of manga under my bed. It’s like the story of the princess and the pea… I can sleep on top of 10,000 manga, but if there’s a single OEL manga among them, I can’t rest at night. -_- )
Lastly… Victor’s and my graphic novel, King of RPGs, has just appeared in the October 2009 issue of PREVIEWS magazine! (Page 242, in the Del Rey Manga section.) It’ll be hitting stores in January, and now is the time when stores are making their orders. If you’re interested in a fiery, manga-style story about the most important issue of our time — roleplaying games — go to your local store and ask them to order it. You can also become a fan of King of RPGs on facebook.