Hoshikawa Ginza Yonchoume – Manga Review

Japanese Title: Hoshikawa Ginza Yonchoume

 

Related: Shoujo Sect (same author)

 

Genre: Yuri Slice of Life

Length: 3 volumes

 

Positives:

  • Cute, sketch style art.
  • Some good humour between the two protagonists.

Negatives:

  • Doesn’t address the issue of the age gap, making for a rather creepy relationship.
  • Goes off on a tangent about helping a similar creepy relationship.
  • Yet another tangent in volume three about a neighbour spying on the little girl and forcing her to pose for nudes.
  • Far from finished art in volume three.

Hoshikawa Ginza Yonchoume is the story of Otome, a home schooled, thirteen-year-old girl, and Minato, her teacher and guardian. Otome led a tough life, neglected by her parents until Ms Minato took her away and became her guardian. They now live together, Minato handling her tutelage and works at a school while Otome takes care of the housework and cooking. Otome is the more responsible of the two and does as much as she can not to be a burden on Minato.

So far, this manga sounds rather normal; however, once Otome tries to start an intimate relationship, one Minato wants except for the matter of legality, it descends into creepy territory. Remember, Otome is thirteen, Minato twenty-six. Now, this is fiction, so anything goes. That said, it still needs to be good, believable, and have a point. Hoshikawa Ginza Yonchoume doesn’t manage any of the three. Other than a few gags when Otome keeps trying to kiss Minato, who refuses on legality, the age gap is never discussed. It would be a different story entirely if Otome were eighteen with a thirty-one-year-old, but at Otome’s age, such a relationship is in a category of its own. There’s this pink elephant from Venus in the corner that no one has noticed.

By not addressing the character ages and the trauma this eventually sexual relationship would cause, I don’t see the point in this manga outside of fetish work. It’s like having a story about a ghost, but no one ever mentions he’s a ghost or how he became one, at all. Then on the final line of the final page, some minor character says, “Did anyone else notice that guy is a ghost?” Why make him a ghost if you aren’t going to do anything with it? That Venus elephant in the corner has grown rather large…

Art – Low

The visuals start out well, despite the limited scope of a slice of life story, but in volume three, the artist didn’t finish.

Story – Low

Hoshikawa Ginza Yonchoume shows promise at first; however, by not address the age gap and the consequences of such a relationship, it ends up creepy. Then there is the derailment by irrelevant tangents, yet somehow just as creepy, after the first volume.

Recommendation: Don’t bother. The instant the girl’s age sinks in the creep factor takes hold.

(Find out more about the manga recommendation system here.)

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