KATE: I’d be the first to admit that Honey Darling is silly. The plot hinges on the kind of illogical behavior and improbable coincidences that a first-semester film student would know better than to include in his script. (The nadir is a scene in which one character runs into the street asking strangers where the nearest animal clinic is. Hasn’t he heard of directory assistance? Or Google, for that matter?) If you can look past the contrivances, however, what you’ll discover is a sweet story with a good heart and a good sense of humor, in which two impossibly handsome guys fall in love with each other. Fans of smutty manga may be disappointed, as all the heavy breathing takes place in the final chapter, but readers who like a more straightforward romance will find Honey Darling agreeable.
MJ: I must say, I’m with Kate this week. I’ll admit there haven’t been a lot of titles for me to love in SuBLime’s lineup so far, which is to say that they’ve simply been Not to My Taste. I have been won over by a couple of books, however, and they’ve been the ones I least expected to enjoy—first Oku-San’s Daily Fantasies and now Honey Darling. It is silly, just as Kate says, and there’s nothing truly remarkable in its fairly conventional BL premise, but it’s a lovely example of sweet, sincere romance that doesn’t take itself too seriously. Simply put, Honey Darling is a pleasure to read.
MICHELLE: I’m also aboard the BL bandwagon, but I’m once again recommending Kazuma Kadoka’s Kizuna, which is seeing the release of its sixth and I think final volume. Kizuna was actually released in English before, by long-defunct CPM, but that publisher never got around to publishing the last volume. Though DMP repackaged the first ten, already-released volumes in two-in-one omnibus editions, they’ve left this final one as a standalone, meaning that all the folks who didn’t rebuy the series can just snap this one up! Pretty considerate, actually! Anyway, this BL story (with plenty of yakuza) has been a pleasure to read and I look forward to seeing how it all ends.
SEAN: Honestly, there’s nothing this week that screams Pick of the Week for me. So I will move away from manga and go with the 3rd collection of Floyd Gottfredson’s comic strips, Walt Disney’s Mickey Mouse Vol. 3: High Noon at Inferno Gulch. These volumes have been a revelation, showing a generation who had only seen the dull, squeaky clean corporate Mickey exactly why he was the darling of the 1930s. Pure rollicking high-adventure, they’re also filled with background material and essays by cartoon scholars such as editor David Gerstein. A must for any cartoon fan collection.
Readers, what looks good to you this week?