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Я не читала всю эту описательную муть. Мне просто понравились обложки. Хотя какое разочарование, когда обложки не совпадают по рисунку с тем, что намалевано внутри.


Simona's BL Research Lab: Tomoko Yamashita

Japan's hottest new kid on the block Tomoko Yamashita has a very distinctive style, so maybe not everybody would come to like it, but it is an acquired taste, and like all acquired tastes, it is guaranteed to last longer than a fleeting, hot passion.

Special, unique, interesting Boys Love authors.

The wretched man's guardian angel

Professional manga debut: 2005
Manga titles so far: 6
Dojinshi activity: not currently
Dojinshi circle name: noneCo.

Tomoko Yamashita is currently one of the most appreciated BL authors in Japan, taking the whole scene by storm after her acclaimed 2007 monographic debut with Kuimonodokoro Akira [くいもの処明楽 Dining Bar Akira] and she keeps marching on like a steamroller at an amazing pace, reaching a total of six volumes in only two years. She is by far the most popular new talent in the BL world, and one of the paladins of the "cool & hip" nouvelle vague that goes way beyond classic yaoi.

She debuted in 2005 in the seinen [青年 young men] monthly magazine Kodansha Afternoon winning the Afternoon Four Season Prize with the manga Nekoze no Yoakemae but fell into controversy because some people accused her of plagiarism saying she copied the manga Hyakki Yakosho by Ichiko Ima, and she had a hard time explaining on her blog that if there was any relation with Ima's work that was entirely accidental and she never consciously copied it. The bad experience obviously left her with some bitter aftertaste, because she shut down her blog and concentrated on Boys Love (though she did publish another story on Afternoon in March 2008). Let me tell you, I am not complaining too much, because it means I can read more of her fantastic BL manga!

Like Sakae Kusama, her characters are mainly adult men, from 20 years old up. Tomoko's men are all rather problematic, a manifesto to insecurity, some even neurotic, mostly timid and beaten up by life; as the self-styled movie director über otaku Renge from Ouran High School Host Club's dictates: "what makes a girl's heart throb are beautiful and tormented men!". Indeed. At first, I have to admit I had my reservations to pick up her manga, because they looked pretty gloomy from the cover, or, for example, I thought that her debut work was heavily about food like "Kino Nani Tabeta?" [きのう何食べた? What Did You Eat Yesterday?] by veteran Fumi Yoshinaga, which would not suit my palate, so to speak, but this time I have to say my intuition wasn't working properly (or maybe it got switched off by unnecessary rational thoughts).

Aside from the absolutely not negligible detail that her stories do HAVE a storyline (sounds obvious but when it comes down to yaoi it ain't), Tomoko Yamashita's top strength is her fantastic, cool and hip sense of humor that permeates everything with an elegant irony and makes even the most useless looser you would want to kick in the butt shouting: "Get a life!" worth of your undivided attention. At first, I didn't even like her drawing style, and it still does not fit the "I want to plaster my room with this woman's manga posters!!" bill, but as you read on and deeply sink into Tomoko's world, it all comes together like a magic puzzle: her drawing style fits perfectly her narrative style and the people she talks about.

It is not "pretty" by any means, but amazingly, her characters can become sweet, cute and adorable even with those sharp features.

Especially Touch Me Again, my first TY's manga, has these "luvvy duvvy" qualities embedded in the protagonist of the main story, who is the victim of his feelings for a uselessly violent - but by no means evil - longtime friend. You watch him, with his eternally sad face, and you can't help feeling the urge to hug him (then afterwards kick him in the butt screaming: "Get a life!" ). Her latest Tokyo Mangasha work, I Want to Talk About Love [Koi no Hanashi ga Shitai 恋の話がしたい], has the same effect though the protagonist this time is a super-duper basket case full of complexes, someone I'd generally just run over with my motorbike at first sight, but she makes everything so funny that you end up rooting for him. Poor thing. (Then run him over with… errm, oops I didn't mean to write that ).

In December 2008 Tokyo Mangasha and Libre did a joint event celebrating I Want to Talk About Love and Bara no Hitomi wa Bakudan [薔薇の瞳は爆弾 The Eyes of The Rose Are Bombs], that went on sale within a few days from each other, inserting a limited edition "paper" [basically an original one-off short manga that cannot be bought anywhere; they are printed in old dojinshi style, and some look just like photocopies], part 1 in Tokyo Mangasha's and part 2 in Libre's volume. This gives us an idea of how important is Tomoko Yamashita's presence in the Boys Love world: it is very rare to see Japanese publishers cooperate in this way, though 2008 saw a lot of similar events with Takehiko Inoue's Vagabond and Real and Shonen Magazine & Shonen Sunday celebrating their 50th anniversary in many joint projects. Let's hope to see more interesting collaborations, and also, a lot more of Tomoko Yamashita.


1. Kuimonodokoro Akira [くいもの処明楽 Dining Bar Akira]
Tokyo Mangasha 2007
2. Touch Me Again [タッチ・ミー・アゲイン]
Libre, 2008
3. Koi no Kokoro ni Kuroi Hane [恋の心に黒い羽 Black Wings on a Love Heart]
Tokyo Mangasha 2008
4. Illumination [イルミナシオン]
Ohzora Shuppan, 2008
5. Koi no Hanashi ga Shitai [恋の話がしたい I Want to Talk About Love]
Tokyo Mangasha 2008
6. Bara no Hitomi wa Bakudan [薔薇の瞳は爆弾 The Eyes of The Rose Are Bombs]
Libre, 2008

Images copyrights:
All © Tomoko Yamashita and: Tokyo Mangasha, Libre, Ohzora Shuppan.

@темы: хочу, Манга, яой

2009-10-19 в 17:40 

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2009-10-19 в 17:43 

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2011-10-17 в 03:44 

thank you for posting this. i'm always trying to find more info about her, and it breaks my heart that she was accused of plagiarism.


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