A Collection of Sports Manga Reviews

Tea’s Okay, Have Doubts on the Milk & Sugar

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Crimson Hero by Mitsuba Takanashi – Most shoujo fans would have probably heard of this series, I presume. Awkward tall girl, heir to some fancy traditional restaurant, only cares about playing volleyball and tries to start up a all-girl’s volleyball team, with various hurdles here and there. Also lots of useless romance. This is actually my second time trying to read this manga, and I’ve actually managed to get past the first volume this time. I find that my enjoyment of this series is heavily dependant on whether or not a match is on. If a match is on, I’m all good. If it’s the stupidity that is the love triangle and/or wangst from Haibuki, I’m this close to trashing the manga where it belongs. I think Takanashi-sensei just writes the type of romance I really, really hate. But hey, it said “creator of Akuma no Sourou“, one of my most hated shoujo series right up there with Hot Gimmick and Hana Yori Dango, on the metaphorical box when I started reading it, so I guess I knew this was coming. I do enjoy the matches though, and some of my favourite parts was when Nobara goes to train with Ryou. =D And I give it props for being like, the only serious sports manga in the shoujo field right now. I’ll confess though, I can’t follow this manga on a released chapter basis. I’ll probably have to read a batch at a time or something, or just put off reading it again until the end, or whenever Ryou makes an appearance. If I have to suffer through the romance on a chapterly basis I may just have to kill myself. ><” So yeah, I like the sports aspect in general, have serious distaste about the romance. Also, this is worth repeating: Haibuki is a creeper. *shudders*

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Eyeshield 21 by Riichiro Inagaki and Yuusuke Murata – … I read it. All of it. And yes, I liked it, so all those who insisted that I was missing out when I refused to read this, you can all rub it in now. But I will be honest, I didn’t like it for the sports aspect. I liked it because HIRUMA OWNS MY HEART AND SOUL. <3333333 Seriously, this manga could have just been about Hiruma being evil alllllll day, and I would have lapped it up like honey. The only match I actually found “intense” was the one where the Devilbats faced the Nagas. I hated the deathmarch part, and the world tournament was a complete sham. (I personally think it should have just ended with the Christmas Bowl, but w/e) Also, while we’re at this… Er, shallow treatment of racial issues much? (Because special emo backstory about racist coach’s past absolves him of all sin now, or something. And this is the tip of the iceberg.) I won’t get into a rant about it, I just wanted to say it was shallow, like most manga series. *sighs* Also, what’s up with all the girls being hot cheerleaders and/or the caretaker for the guys? ES21 would have me believe that there is only one girl in the entire world who can be a worthy football player on a national level (international is too much for our delicate sensibilities, I suppose), and even Karin was only put there through the encouragement of The Man, and not because, you know, she would desire to play football on her own free will. (I like Karin. I’m saying that I wished that there was OTHER girls wanting to be football players or something. It would make Karin’s portrayal way less problematic.) Ah, but whatever. I derived great joy out of Hiruma’s antics. I’m not sure if I’ll be checking out any future works by these two creators, but I had a lot of fun reading about Hiruma, for what it’s worth.

*have to work soon, will fix up tags later

ETA: feel free to rec any sports manga to me, btw! I’m on a roll here, lol

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11 Responses to “A Collection of Sports Manga Reviews”


  1. 1 kelakagandy August 19, 2009 at 12:05 am

    “Haibuki is a creeper”
    omg, this! He just kinda freaks me out. D:

  2. 3 Sapphire Pyro August 19, 2009 at 5:31 am

    the first two seem interesting . . . might check them out someday.

    I don’t think I’ll like the volleyball one =_= didn’t last long on the mangaka’s other series . . .

    I love eyeshield21! but I’m so behind x_x is it really finished?

    sports manga to recommend . . . the best for me is SLAMDUNK. hilarious . . . I love it xD

    others . . . hhhmm . . . the one I’m currently reading is Takkoku!! (pingpong manga) . . . latest chapter got me hyped because something reeeeeeally interesting is finally happening~

    Prince of Tennis is popular. I liked it, but not a huge fangurl. And I’m extremely behind.

    oh yeah, I LOVE OOKIKU FURIKABUTE aka OOFURI!!! It’s baseball . . guys though . . . AND IT’S SO ADORKABLE!!!!! xD

    I also like Air Gear . . . it’s rollerblades manga . . . though I’m not updated once again~

    Cross Game is nice . . . it’s baseball . . . only seen anime though . . .

    oh yeah, how could I forget Hikaru no Go!!! It’s well, about go, the chess-like game. I LOVE IT!!!! MARATHONED IT LIKE THERE’S NO TOMORROW xD

    That’s what I remember for now . . .

    Ehehehe . . . as you can see, I’m more into shounen sports xD Wheeeee~

    • 4 wingstodust August 19, 2009 at 2:19 pm

      lol Tetsuwan Girl and Nononono come highlyyyyy recommended. ESPECIALLY Tetsuwan Girl. <33

      Ugh, Akuma no Sourou. *stabs* But Crimson Hero redeems this mangaka for me… Relatively. Not .completely absolved, but relatively. (btw, you would not BELIEVE the crap shoujo calls "sports" manga in that genre. x.x It's pathetic when literally only one series in an entire target audience manages to deliver on the sports genre aspect)

      Yup, Eyeshield 21 is finished~~~

      Oh yeah I remember you rec-ing Takkoku!! I dunno, the premise kind of sounds silly though. Making someone go out with you by winning the match? x.x But hey, I thought the same about ES21, so whatever. *puts Takkoku, Slam Dunk, Prince of Tennis, & Air Gear on to-read list*

      Haha, EVERYONE has been telling me to watch Oofuri since last year. I was planning on watching the anime once Taishou Yukyuu Musume is done its run, but anywho, in your opininon, manga or anime is better?

      lol I'm afraid I'll pass on Hikaru no Go. Not counting board games, lol.

      You know, this is the third time I came across a Cross Game rec. =D *puts it on priority*

      Yeah, I'm on anti-shounen phase right now soooooooo, yeah. Most of the summaries for shounen sports manga make me roll my eyes. (Homg he's the shortest and scrawniest person evar but he play whatever sport BETTER THAN EVERYONE ELSE!!!! Or, dude doesn't think he has any talent but one day by sheer coincidence someone discovers that he has HIDDEN TALENT for some stupid sports move, MUST RECRUIT HOMG GENIUS. =_____=) I find that I like seinen sports more, actually. Less ridiculous POWER-UPS and SPECIAL MOVES, and also, most of the time (not ALL the time but i'll take what I can get), the females do not suck.

      • 5 Sapphire Pyro August 20, 2009 at 1:07 am

        Will be reading them xD

        That’s why I sometimes tend to avoid shoujo sports manga >_> It’s easier for me to deal with the shounen sports stereotypes than that kind of crap =_=

        I need to catch up on eyeshield21. Impossible for me to finish the anime (I think there had been many episodes) so I’ll try to marathon the manga~

        Takkoku is silly indeed~ but it’s seldom for me to encounter shounen sports wherein the main couple is canon and the leading girl is the best in the sport (at least in their country)~

        I haven’t read the manga of Oofuri, so I can’t tell. BUT THE ANIME IS SO ADORABLE!!!!! I’m sure the manga is just as adorable~ I recommend you to put this on a priority list xD

        I’m behind Cross Game though, but the ones I’ve seen have been good. I think you might appreciate it more than I did, since I’m not really much into slice of life manga~ ehehe

        oh yeah, air gear had ecchi if I remember correctly. I liked what I had read so far, but I dunno if later chapters are that awesome to me.

        prince of tennis has the bishies and the unbelievable special moves . . . so I’m not that sure if you’ll like it . . . but well, we’ll see xD

        I am not sure if slamdunk will be your type either, but if you liked eyeshield . . . then there might be high chances. It’s as manly, but oh the comedy xD it’s freakin’ hilarious. the “love story” sucks though . . . but well, it’s one-sided forever~ ignoring that, this series had been so awesome~ I’ve only seen the anime though. So I’m not sure about the manga ^^;

        Alright . . . whoaaaa . . . here goes my ever so long to-read list that is getting even long xD

  3. 6 wingstodust August 20, 2009 at 2:55 am

    @sapphy,
    but it’s seldom for me to encounter shounen sports wherein the main couple is canon and the leading girl is the best in the sport

    *blinks* Wow, when you put it that way, you actually make me wanna give Takkoku another go. @.@

    lol I think I’ll put Oofuri on priority anime marathon list then. =D And Cross Game too, once I’m through with Oofuri that is. =D

    x.x Ecchi, eh…? well, I’ll try to keep an open mind about it, but no promises.

    I actually just tried out prince of tennis today and I’m enjoying myself so far. =D We’ll see if the special moves piss me off or I get too attached to Ryoma when they come around for me to care.

    I tried the slam dunk anime ETA:Manga and didn’t care for it at all. I thought ES21 was funnier, personally. And yeah, the romance sucks. But hey, maybe the anime is better? I’ll admit I was also turned off by SD because of the art, so maybe the animation would be more tolerable.

    • 7 Sapphire Pyro August 20, 2009 at 8:46 am

      that’s why I still gave takkoku a chance, even if it has been so “duh” in some events, chapters, and have been kinda repetitive. ehehe

      yay for oofuri~ just 26 episodes (dunno about the manga). enjoy adorableness xD haha *just remembered she hasn’t finished it yet as well* . . . damn . .

      ecchi is what turns me off in air gear x_x

      Ryoma is love xD I actually like Ryoma x Sakuno (I am surprised that I don’t hate Sakuno >_> *usually hates shounen leading ladies as you know xD*)

      ah, yeah, slamdunk’s art isn’t pretty to the majority. but what mattered to me more was entertainment . . . and I got entertained . . . a lot xD haha!

      • 8 wingstodust August 20, 2009 at 3:46 pm

        So I tried rereading the first chapter of Takkoku again and nope, I can’t get into it. =_=

        !! I like the Ryoma x Sakuno too! Though this may also be influenced by the fact I’m extremely happy the main guy isn’t hooking up with a fangirl/cheerleader/team manager, and an actual fellow sports player as well. And Sakuno as a character seems pretty good so far, so I’m optimistic.

  4. 9 Sapphire Pyro August 21, 2009 at 1:14 pm

    Okayz ^^; So it wasn’t your thing~ but I think I might also be dropping it, if the 8th chapter will disappoint me =_=

    YAY TO FELLOW RYOMA X SAKUNO SHIPPER!!!!! xD Wheeeeee~

    We are kinda few ya know. Ryoma is mostly shipped with . . . the guys ^^;

    Btw, I’ve now read Nononono and . . . I dropped it ^^; It wasn’t bad but . . . really not my type >_>

    • 10 wingstodust August 21, 2009 at 8:11 pm

      haha, don’t most guys in shounen fandom get shipped together? It’s ’cause the girls usually suck in shounen. Or, are completely non-existant. *coughHunterxHuntercough* I don’t know which I hate more. /end anti-shounen rant.

      btw, I’m so, so sorry about not putting a warning tag here. Especially for Tetseuwan Girl, since I actually knew there was mature content in that series. I forget that people have different mileage than me, and it was rather insensitive of me to not have put up any warnings. =/ I’ll definitely keep this in mind and try to put up warning tags whenever applicable. =)

      • 11 Sapphire Pyro August 24, 2009 at 9:10 am

        about shounen, ah yeah, I see that too.

        HxH has females! not much though . . . and none on the good guys side if I remember correctly =_= but yeah, really rare. and most of them really suck.

        thanks for the warning! and yeah, it will be really helpful if you put warnings on future posts ^^; ehehehe . . . I can’t 100% trust inputs on genres on manga directories anymore x_x


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