Happy Valentine’s Day everyone! we’re reading a romance shoujo manga to get the lovey-dovey vibes going on.
This week, we’re looking into Last Game (MAL) a Comedy, Romance and Shoujo manga that has 66 chapters. This was recommended by Yungju. He’s the guy you’d want to get recommendations for all kinds of romantic manga.
Synopsis: Nothing is beyond Naoto Yanagi, heir to the Yanagi business conglomerate. Idolized for his athletic and intellectual competence, looks and wealth, Naoto lived like a king during his elementary school days—then entered Mikoto Kujou, a plain, gloomy-looking transfer student.
Due to her low financial status, Naoto was initially apathetic towards Mikoto. But despite having just arrived at his school, she completely eclipsed him in everything by consistently scoring top marks in exams and placing first in athletic events. After a brief confrontation with her that left him shocked, Naoto vowed to outdo her no matter the cost.
Ten years later, they are now students attending the same college. Having failed to defeat Mikoto throughout middle and high school, Naoto decides they will have one last game: if he can make Mikoto fall in love with him and then break her heart, it will be his victory. However, he finds himself falling in love with her instead…
I don’t usually read Shoujo manga because of the usual cliché that it usually has. But, Last Game was in a sense better, versus other shoujo manga. The storyline felt refreshing and I would say that Last Game is somewhat unique, but it still follows the formula of its genre.
Even though the “rich boy & poor girl” romantic trope is widely used and Last Game falls into that category. The manga was intuitive enough in making use of the trope. Shoujo wouldn’t be shoujo if there were no super tall rich broad shoulder guys around the poor main protagonist girl right?
Everything from the romantic buildups to the introduction of other romantic interests felt well appropriated. Everyone was relevant and there were no characters left out. It was magical how the author thought up of interactions that naturally blended the charisma of the characters within one another.
The negative I saw in the manga was the depiction of the two main male protagonists. They were too feminine in thinking and it felt very unrealistic for me. So, I wasn’t that “immersed” in the male protagonist aspect of Last Game.
Overall, the delivery of how our main heroine and her romantic interests were the main sellers of this series. It has 60 chapters but I never stopped smiling and grinning while reading through any of the chapters. – Admittedly, I cried in the ending.
It’s one of those “cheesy” shoujo manga that will make yourself feel like a high school girl. A very straightforward story about our male MC the “oh so perfect” famous and rich Yanagi (like a lot of male leads in shoujo) which has a one-sided rivalry issue with our female MC Kujou who is a plain and stoic girl.
Last Game starts off with a little backstory of the characters while they were young, and shows a few pieces that connect through the next chapters of why Yanagi is persistent with his goal of making Kujou fall for him. A rather pretty slow pacing manga if you ask me, with a lot of pages per chapter so it’s quite a read, which is not bad especially if you’re into the shoujo genre. You’ll have your dose of back and forth diabetes inducing moments that will leave you grinning like a fool.
A pretty short insight cause I’m still halfway with it but for now, I’m liking the pace of the manga “so far”. Last Game is a nice little addition to your Romcom manga binge list if you’re feeling a bit cold for the incoming Valentines day.
THL – “For once the guy was finally the tsundere”
From a point of view of a guy, it was a fresh experience compared to the usual bullshit of romance shonen manga. No forced ships, no whimpy main character, no sidetracking that gets nowhere. Last Game is just pure romance from start to finish.
Last game uses the same old cliché many romance show use. It was rare to see a fresh take on the generic shoujo genre. What I also like about this, is even though they used this trope, it is somewhat refreshing to see it in the guy’s perspective. It is fun to see the guy who’s finally pushing the boundaries instead of the girl.
The only problem I have in this manga is that it felt unnatural. Well, that is probably normal since I’m not the target market. It’s for SHOUJO but once that is out of the way. This manga was a good read and heavily recommended to those that want a refreshing experience after reading shounen romance.
Last Game is a lovely manga that was enjoyed by all the members of our book club. The pacing of the storyline was the main selling point of the series as all chapters were like a rollercoaster ride.
Overall, we’ll give this one a 4 out of 5. One star is missing because we felt like the male characters could have been a better bishonen, but that’s just us nitpicking. The series in all sense was perfect.
We absolutely recommend Last Game, remember to bring with you some tissues for all the super sweet moments this manga have.
This book club series is where people who like to read manga collaborate and make a short insight or essay about the week’s featured manga.
The featured manga will totally be random. A member (or you) will suggest a manga every other week, other members would then post his/her insight.
The essays will be posted every other week on Thursdays (JST) and collaborators would need to limit their writing to about 300 words or less. (Subject to change)
We would like to hear your thoughts! Feel free to comment down below on what you think of this manga.
Next week will be about -Hitogatana- by Onigunsou. Our next review will be up on March 4.
If you’re interested in joining our book club series, send me a DM on Twitter or email me directly at theanimeathena(@)animeathena.com
The book club members are looking forward to your recommendations! Comment them below if you like reading our thoughts on your favorite manga.
Freelance writer and game developer writing for Anime Athena