atomic_fungus (atomic_fungus) wrote,

#2170: Breakfast and Kimi ni Todoke manga

For the first time in a couple of months I had the downsized big farm breakfast. (One potato, two eggs, three strips of turkey "bacon".)

First off, how the FDA lets meat companies get away with calling it "turkey bacon" and not "processed turkey bacon food" is beyond me. When cooked it has the same texture as corn flakes. It doesn't really taste much like bacon. It is a bacon-like substance. But since I am making a serious effort to reduce my caloric intake, the bacon-like substance is the rule and not the exception from now on. (*sigh*) Turkey "bacon" is much lower in fat and cholesterol than real pig bacon, hence the justifiability of having three strips rather than two. I think the three strips combined have about as much fat in them as one strip of the real thing.

But whatev.

Second: a couple days ago I picked (somewhat inadvertently) the first pepper off Mom's pepper plants. I hadn't intended to pick it; I was just trying to move it and the stem snapped. It sat on the counter for most of the week. I noticed it was feeling wilted, so I decided I'd cook it in with the potatos instead of using the frozen pre-chopped green pepper.

Holy crap. The pepper was so strongly flavored that I could actually taste it in the potato. Home grown FTW! I'm looking forward to when we have enough peppers that Mom can make goulash with them. I bet that'll be awesome.

Third: man, it hit the spot, even the turkey "bacon". When I woke up I couldn't think of a single thing I'd rather have for breakfast, and so this ended up being it. It's been at least since sometime in May or early June that I had one of these, so I think I was about due.

* * *

As I said, I picked up all four extant volumes of Kimi ni Todoke Friday afternoon. Since my sleep schedule is all shot to hell I had to come home from taking Mom to the doctor, eat something, and then crash for several more hours, so it wasn't until around 10 PM that I read any of it.

I logged onto WoW and did the jewelcrafting daily, but got sick of waiting for a random and just farmed some saronite before I logged off. Then I lay down and read some KnT as drawn by Karuho Shiina.

Up to about the latter third of the first volume (which is all I've read) the anime follows the manga exactly. The artwork is surprising--in fact it's not as good as the anime had led me to expect. Don't get me wrong--it's very good--but the way Sawako is drawn frequently disappoints me. Shiina frequently goes for "creepy-chan" over "cute", which makes Sawako less cute and more creepy but also makes her a little repellent. Especially when she draws Sawako without eyebrows. (This is, in fact, an ART WIN because it conveys how most people view Sawako. But it bothers me a bit.) On the plus side, Ayane and Chizu are drawn prettier than in the anime.

The "choosing seats" scene bothered me, not because of anything with the story or art, but because it felt as if I'd seen it too many times. I've watched the anime once so I don't understand why I feel this way. (Perhaps I'm living my own version of "Endless Eight". "Endless Seven"? Congratulations, Ed! You've waited for your ebook reader fifteen thousand times! *sigh*)

The book has a little page of stickers included with it, and they are extra cute:

It's washed out because I had to use my camera to get the image--sorry, I'm not busting the binding of this book to scan it--and I could not get the luminance down far enough to take a higher-contrast image. (Yes, I adjusted the exposure.)

The whole thing is sticker material, though only a few of the flowers are cut out. One could take scissors to the page to get them all if one were going to peel & stick, but I'm not. The lower-right corner image looks like Sawako put on a few dozen kilos and went goth, but it's still cute.

Viz did the translation and they're still putting a cover price of $8.99 on their TPBs, which is nice, especially considering that they used to be $14.95 plus back in the Ranma and Maison Ikkoku days.

TPB="Trade Paper Back" which, when it comes to manga, I refer to as tankobon the way the Japanese do. (Collected manga chapters in TPB form are "tankobon". But there are enough non-otaku readers of the Fungus that I have to explain, which greatly surprises me.)

About 3/4 of the book goes into telling the story told in the first two episodes of the anime. "Pages to minutes" is not an exact science but IMHO that's a lot of pages compared to how much animation there is. Then again, you convey story in comics with changing pictures and anime changes the picture about 20 times a second.

But then chapter 3 of the manga is encapsulated by episode 3 of the anime. Eps 1 and 2 come from about 160 pages; ep 3 comes from about 50. Go figure.

(Of course the manga existed first.)

Shiina herself is married, which is interesting because most of the time I hear about female manga artists, nothing is ever said about their marital status or anything, but in her "making of KnT" bits she mentions her husband. She apparently lives in Hokkaido, which is similarly unusual--at least, she's the first manga artist I've heard of who does.

Overall I'm liking the manga as much as I like the anime. My only real worry is that I may be overloading on the stuff--the anime first, then the OST, now the manga, all in the space of a week or so. Well, if you can't go overboard on something harmless once in a while, what can you do?

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