Wednesday, November 03, 2004

Quick Manhwa Reviews

Demon Diary, vol. 1
by Lee Chi Hyong, Soome Lee, & Kara
Had I paid better attention to the back cover copy, I would have realized before going in that this was shōnen-ai. It's not the sort of stuff that I'm normally interested in, but even if you are, there must be better examples of that genre than this. The story starts out with an interesting premise: a boy learns that he is a demon spawn and must become a Demon Lord, but he is wholly unsuited for the job. But the boy, Raenef, is annoying, and the plot doesn't really go much of anywhere. Given how she is prominently featured in the copy, I take it that the creative star of this comic is meant to be Kara, but I just don't see it. There is nothing original in her art, and the quality varies wildly from panel to panel. "Demon Diary" takes up only a little more than half of the book, with the remainder filled out with two short stories, both illustrated by Kara and written by Lee.
Rating: 2 (of 5)

I.N.V.U., vol. 1
by Kim Kang Won
When high school student Sey's flighty mother up and leaves to live in Italy, she leaves her daughter with the Kang family. The Kangs first appear to be the perfect family, but Sey slowly learns that things aren't what they seem, including the fact that the Kang's son Terry isn't really their son at all--Terry is actually Hali, their daughter! Add in all the normal angsty shojo ingredients and mix it up with the very good artwork from Won and you get a teenage romance comic that, while not at the level of something like Paradise Kiss, is at least enjoyable.
Rating: 3 (of 5)

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