Today I’m going to be looking at one of my favorite Mangaka, Komi Naoshi of Double Arts and, more recently, Nisekoi fame. Naoshi has been serialized twice, both in Shonen Jump, and has many one shots, most of which are a really great read. Nisekoi started as a one shot and Shonen Jump later serialized it.
Nisekoi focuses on the life of Raku Ichijou and his group of friends. He is the heir to a Japanese Yakuza family, but doesn’t want to take over the family business. Instead he wants to pursue a normal career as a civil servant. He is secretly in love with his middle school crush Kosaki Onodera, who is also secretly in love with him since middle school. Chitoge Kirisaki is a new transfer student who happens to be the daughter of the leader of a rival gang. Both factions are in the brink of war and to bring peace between them both, the leaders decide to have Raku and Chitoge fake being lovers.
The fake love is the main focus of the story but underneath is the constant sub plot that Raku is focused on. When he was a kid he made a promise with a girl, that he can’t remember, that when they grow up that she would use her key to unlock Rakus pendant and they would get married. But seeing as how Raku forgot who she was and she has forgotten as well, or she hasn’t been introduced yet, we have yet to know. One of my favorite parts of the manga is the fact that it could honestly be any of the girls he knows that has a key. Most romantic comedy manga focus on one or two girls and kind of hint as to who it is but Nisekoi doesn’t hint and Naoshi sensei is great at making all the girls a viable candidate. My favorites are Chitoge and Onodera. I believe that it will be Chitoge but if it ends up being Onodera I’m OK with that as well. Character development is fantastic. Some of my favorite chapters are fillers about the side characters, like Rakus best friend Shu Maiko and his unrequited love and Chitoges bodyguard Seishirou Tsugumi and her past as a hit woman and the dark underworld.
At times Nisekoi can seem to drag its feet with some, but not all, fillers but the chapters that deal with Chitoge, Onodera and Raku make up for them by being hilarious and heartfelt. Chapter 100 is only 8 chapters away so if you haven’t started reading it yet, now is the time to start!