Today is my tenth wedding anniversary, so I’ve got marriage on the brain. And I was surprised to realize, when I thought about it, just how seldom I encounter weddings or even marriage in the manga I read, despite my heavy leanings towards romance.
Then again, I think it’s only a rare kind of story that wants to delve beyond the early rush of romance and into what happens next. I remember as a child, getting to Laura Ingalls’ wedding in the Little House series, and feeling just as bewildered as she seemed to be, suddenly separated from the place and people she’d lived with all her life until then. The heart-pounding romance that had brought us both to this point had taken a too-realistic turn that neither she nor I was even remotely prepared for. I had a similar feeling when Betsy finally married Joe near the end of Maud Hart Lovelace’s Betsy-Tacy series. As much as Betsy struggled with the reality of domestic life, I struggled with the loss of her romantic adventure.
Still, there are a few manga weddings that spring to mind as I ponder, though not all of them are marriages I personally endorse!
3 manga weddings for Melinda’s anniversary:
Probably the favorite of my manga marriages is not actually a legal one, at least not in Japan. But when Hashizume turns up with the adoption forms, showing Ida that he really does love him, and has wanted to marry him for long time, I honestly got teary. Oh, Fumi. *snif* You really are the best of all.
Okay, so they don’t actually show Tohru’s marriage to Kyo, but after 23 volumes of pounding in the message that a girl’s most important dream is marriage, Takaya at least provides us with proof that it happened after all. It’s a pretty sweet little moment too, even if it gets her out of having to deal with any of the hard stuff.
Though Hachi and Takumi’s wedding is possibly the least romantic thing to ever hit the page as far as I’m concerned, its business-like manner reminds us all that marriage is really just a contract, for good or for ill, and that it can’t create or replace love and emotional partnership. Will we ever find out how this marriage really turns out? I dearly hope so.
A list of manga weddings was difficult for me to muster, I have to admit. Readers, can you do better?