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Monday, 31 August 2009

Manga Review: Hayate no Gotoku


Title: Hayate the Combat Buttler
Author: Kenjiro Hata
Release: Weekly
Status: Ongoing
Genre: Slice of Life, Shonen, Comedy
Art: B
Originality: A
Story: C
Characters: A
Humor: A
Action: C

Impression: This is a story of a young man who is left to deal with a 150 million yen debt left by his parents who just abandoned him all of a sudden. Because of this, he is chased by the yakuza who his parents are indebted to and comes to conclusion that crime is the only way to solve his problems. After deciding his new way of life, he runs into a rich girl who’s having trouble using a vending machine. One thing leads to another and eventually she decides to buy his debt from the Yakuza and hire him as her butler. This manga has a lot of 4th wall breaking jokes and many, many references to other works to accompany the many crazy events that take place in this manga. This is the sort of manga that kids and otaku will absolutely love as humor is always the main focus of the manga. The characters certainly have good chemistry with each other and develop well but the story really lacks depth and planning. The story gave a hint of the main plot sometime in the first 20 chapters but the plot itself hadn’t actually started until after 150 or so chapters later. What resulted was a set of backstory chapters of the main characters that felt like complete retcons to me even though they actually explained some his extraordinary traits. I really didn’t like it when that happened but at least the author still kept up with the humor so it wasn’t a total mood breaker. I can’t grasp why exactly the series is such a boom with so many people though. I do find it funny but it’s not the funniest manga out there and I really can’t figure out why people enjoy seeing Hayate crossdress and consider him to be very moe at those times. Nevertheless it’s a good gag manga and quite an enjoyable read.

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