Sunday, 15 January 2012

Bakuman Season 2 - Episode 15

I think it's fair to say that things were a little fraught in terms of the love lives of our two burgeoning manga artists by the end of last week's Bakuman, so how on Earth are they planning to sort out their mess?

In Mashiro's case, "sorting things out" seems to have been confused with "having a blazing row" - after being told by Miho that she can't trust him before hanging up, he calls her back to suggest that he can't trust her either, which is hardly the best move in the world.  Next thing we know, Mashiro isn't talking to Miho and Takagi still isn't talking to Miyoshi - facts with overshadow the fact that their one-shot manga in Jack NEXT has succeeded in reaching number one in the reader's survey, leaving it well-placed for serialisation.

Meanwhile, Aoki Kou is suffering from a similar situation, with a second place ranking with her own one-shot in Jack NEXT taking a back seat to her feelings for Takagi and, perhaps more importantly, the insistence from her editor that she really needs to start working with Nakai again.  While she isn't entirely against the idea, Nakai's sickening attitude leads to him getting a well-deserved slap round the chops, although her ensuing actions almost put the eventual reconciliation between Miyoshi and Takagi on the ropes.  Before we know it, this unlikely couple are engaged, Miho is talking to Mashiro again and Aoki has herself some new friends to occupy herself with.

Overall, and after bemoaning another slice of unrealistic romantic drama from the series last week, this was a mixed bag from Bakuman in episode fifteen - Aoki's behaviour and motivations felt real enough (and I've warmed to her hugely as a character of late, even if I swear the animators have doubled her breast size this series), as did the childishness of Miho and Mashiro's falling out and Nakai's nastiness, but Takagi's proposal to Miyoshi was cringe-worthy and it adds another needless layer to the romance aspects of the series that doesn't really improve the story as a whole at all.  At least everything seems to have been wrapped by the end of this instalment, so with any luck we'll be back with our noses to the grindstone in the manga business again next week.

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