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The Journal of the Lincoln Heights Literary Society
Miscellanea and Ephemeron

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05/08/2008 Archived Entry: "Yaoi review: Endless Rain"

Endless Rain
By Yuuya
Published by the Juné Imprint of Digital Manga, Inc

Review by Ryes

Endless Rain is a disappointing volume. It might have worked better if the story was split into two or three volumes, but as it is now, all the plot points are cramped together and a lot of integral details are left out.

The story starts off with Akira's mother's death. Akira and his younger brother Nao are in a bad situation now. Even though Akira has a job, they'll be living alone on a meager income and Nao is blind and so has special needs. A srange man brings Nao to Akira at the hospital to see their mother one last time. It is raining.

At the funeral, a lot of relatives are worried about how Akira and Nao will live on after this and Akira assures them that they will be fine. They all talk about how Jun'ichirou Kasuga, Akira's father, left Akira and his family because Akira was an illegitimate child. Near the end of the funeral, a messanger from Jun'ichirou Kasuga, Kyouya Hyougami, arrives to deliver money for funeral costs. Akira hates Kyouya because Kyouya is his father's employee, but Nao really likes him so Akira tries not to let his hatred show too much. It is raining.

Kyouya forces Akira and Nao to come live with Kasuga, and Kasuga puts him in charge of the two brothers. Akira sees more of Kyouya's bad sides when Kyouya makes Akira have sex with him so Nao can go to a good school. The company Kyouya is in charge of also buys out the company Akira was previously working with and the hospital that Akira and Nao usually go to. Akira is pissed, but Kyouya offers to give the hospital employees jobs at another place if Akira has more sex with him, so Akira agrees.

In addition to the fact that there is so much of this forced sex to make you choke, there's absolutely no plausible or believable plot to pad it with. Kyouya only rapes Akira because he loves him? Guh? Why does he love him? We never find out. Then Akira begins falling for Kyouya because he sees Kyouya acting nice and concerned on a few occassions. Still, that is a very few occassions. Kyouya is an all-around jerk who uses any means necessary to achieve his end. He doesn't care about other people, aside from Akira because he loooves Akira. And suddenly he wants to ruin Jun'ichirou Kasuga and put Akira in his place as chairman. Since when is Akira qualified for a chairman position? There's a lot of other little unexplained threads throughout this story, such as how suddenly everyone agrees with Kyouya and wants Akira as chairman even though they don't even know him, and how Kyouya manages to survive a fatal wound, or why/how Yuuichirou (Akira's half brother and Jun'ichirou's legitimate heir) became insane. There's also that cheesy part about how it's always raining when Kyouya is around. What would make it slightly less cheesy was if the endless rain represented Akira's tumultous situation in life and how a lot of things are out of his control. Instead the rain represents Kyouya.

Nevertheless, there are some good aspects of this manga. I know why Endless Rain was licensed and it sure wasn't because of the story. The art is phenomenal and it's obvious just from the front cover. Yuuya draws like a lot of shoujo manga artists, and gives her characters really big teary eyes. But unlike a lot of shoujo manga artists, her characters have full, pouty, sexy lips. I like her style of exaggerating the features. It's very appealing! I just hope she comes up with better storylines in the future. Or take more time with the ones she does come up with and pace it out better so she can add in more details instead of leaving loose ends and plot holes all over the place.

Replies: 1 Comment

My impression was that Kyouya was raping/blackmailing Akira into having sex with him because he hated Akira's father Jun'ichirou and was systematically working his way through Jun'ichirou's heirs in order to discredit them and/or figure out which one of them would make the best weapon against their father. (He also seduced Akira's legitimate half-sister and mentally unstable half-brother.) Why he took such an overtly non-consensual approach when dealing with Akira (he seems to have been less crass in his approach to the other two), and why he then fell in love with Akira in the process of using him to bring down his father was left unclear. (The mangaka did give some reason for Kyouya's hatred of Jun'ichirou which seemed relatively plausible at the time, but I can't recall what it was at the moment.)

Posted by Marfisa @ 05/15/2008 02:17 AM PST

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