Welcome back to another review post, this time a Final Thoughts series post, because recently, another manga series has ended and that is the shoujo manga Hirunaka no Ryuusei.
A while ago, I did a review on Hirunaka no Ryuusei, but that was when I was halfway through the series and I gave my thoughts on it based on the story I’d read so far then. Today, I’ll be doing a review wrap-up which will consist of a brief summary and my thoughts on the ended series, as well as its build-up to the climax and the round-up the author gave it.
So if you’re a shoujo manga genre reader, you most probably would have heard of Hirunaka no Ryuusei, which is a relatively long shoujo manga surrounding the life of a country-side girl who moves to the city to live with her uncle and falls in love with her homeroom teacher. In the background of all this, the handsome classmate who sits next to her begins to fall for her and tries to win her affections. To add on to the drama, a pretty female classmate of theirs has a crush on the handsome classmate and is determined to take action against anyone who stands in her way. How will this love triangle – square – play out?
As I’m assuming that you probably would have completed the manga by now (since you’re reading this), so you would know how our protagonist Yosano Suzume fell in love with her homeroom teacher Shishio Satsuki and that although he rejected her for their sakes (and under the request of her uncle, who is also his good friend), he did, in fact, return her feelings.
It’s a shame how things had to turn out that way but I guess it was to be expected because it’s the only right thing to do when it comes to teacher-student relationships. As a mature adult, the one in the teacher role will always be expected to be responsible and sensible to break off the relationship with the student as such relationships are considered forbidden, as we all know.
And so, RECAP:
Shishio broke off his relationship with Suzume, breaking her heart, as well as mine. In typical shoujo fashion, Mamura Daiki takes this chance to confess to her, offering her a life of peace with him. Suzume accepts and begins to look towards Daiki more as the chapters go by. Shishio becomes frustratingly infuriating at this point, becoming all depressed and dithery about his relationship with Suzume and eventually decides to confess his feelings towards her.
But by this time, Suzume’s heart has begun to shift and it’s revealed in the last few chapters of the manga that although Suzume cared about Shishio, her feelings for him were all in the past and that the one who gives her comfort now is Daiki. She however, admits that her feelings for him were real and that she is proud to say that he was her first love. Which is very sweet, and somewhat gives it a good round-up of her second-best relationship outcome with Shishio. (The best would be her returning Shishio’s feelings and a reconciliation with him, keeping tradition to the protagonist-gets-together-with-first-love-interest shoujo style.)
Although I didn’t like Mamura Daiki at first, he started to grow on me after Shishio broke off his relationship with Suzume. I found myself rooting for him because he knew that he loved Suzume and that he wanted to be with her. Also, I didn’t want Suzume pining for Shishio as he was the one who had caused her broken heart. But despite what he had done to her, I couldn’t find it in myself to hate Shishio because there were quite a lot of memories the two had together that even I was attached to. Somewhere in my heart, although I was rooting for Suzume to fall in love with Daiki, I was also hoping that Shishio had another chance to perhaps redeem himself.
If you think about it and compare Hirunaka no Ryuusei with Ao Haru Ride, which is a series that’s nearing its end too and has a similar story line, the female protagonist got together with her first love in the latter while the female protagonist got together with her second love in the former.
Normally, I’d get so attached to the protagonist’s first love that I’d never support the second love/third party at all but I like the way Yamamori Mika wrapped everything up, leaving no hard feelings in all the characters involved.
The protagonist getting together with the second love is something refreshing and something more realistic than than the traditional shoujo ending. Most of the time in life, after we get a broken heart, we don’t usually return to the one who caused it. Instead, we unconsciously seek solace and comfort from someone who will give them to us and more often than not, we tend to form an attachment to them and our affections start to shift. That’s what happened in this manga and I like that the problems faced were real problems that normal people like us can relate to.
I consider it quite a feat that I didn’t come to hate the ending as well as feel injustice for the characters, therefore the high praise for this manga and a much satisfied me at its end.
Well done to Yamamori Mika sensei for a wonderful series and from the enormous success of this series, I know that her next series will just be as good and close to our hearts as Hirunaka no Ryuusei was. 🙂
As for you guys, let me know what you guys think of the ending in the comments below: Did you like it or did not you like it and why?
Thank you for reading and I’ll see you again soon, bye!