Reviews: Nisekoi

A perpetually wasted potential

Nisekoi is a frustrating series. Something that clearly has the potential to be an excellent (if not terribly original) romantic comedy, but where the author keeps on wasting that potential on pointless digressions or clichéd tricks to avoid any kind of progress. As the previous reviewer said, how many "Tsugumi finds a quirky dangerous invention" chapters do we need before the author gets tired of it?

Of course there is this awfully drawn-out plot about the girl of the promise, but frankly… I don't even care about that, so I don't really mind it being out-of-focus. But even without that, it's infuriating to see the relationships between the characters stagnate so much. And that's why Chitoge is the most interesting character of the bunch: she's the only one who actually evolved in 178 chapters (though I guess we can add Yui now?)

Raku on the other hand is one of the blindest MCs I've seen in a romcom. He's a cool and nice guy, sure, but to not notice that Onodera reciprocates his feelings takes some blackhole level density. And the same could be said of Onodera for that matter. Again it's frustrating: these two do have a chemistry and would totally make a cute couple, but no, every occasion they get to confess or get closer only ends in a prayer to the God Status Quo.

Still, there are enough entertaining chapters and funny shippers-on-deck (namely Shuu, Ruri and Fuu-chan) to make me stick to the series for now. So please, author, make something happen, anything!

A basic formula series that continues to drag along

(Read up to chapter 150)

Nisekoi is as basic as a romantic comedy can come by. It has everything you would expect regarding cliches that have been seen throughout this genre, from the gullible main male character, to his love triangle between a Tsundere and a Shrinking Violet, to having a male comedic best friend, and so on. The one thing this series has going for it is the hilarious facial expressions seen amongst it's characters, and even that has been kinda lackluster as of late.

Early on, the story of the Childhood Marriage Promise has a lot of time dedicated to it, and has a lot of readers invested as to who it was that Raku made the promise with, but it becomes very apparent that it was used as an excuse plot only to get you interested in this universes' setting. Once it's been established with all the characters in place, the series then turns into a formula series that mostly continues with one-off chapters containing overused Harem shenanigans seen throughout manga. Once in awhile, it returns to the Marriage Promise (Yui's introduction being the big one), and dedicates a chapter here-and-there to push forward the Shuu and Ruri shipping, but aside from that, the manga has continued to drag along with no end in sight.

The anime adaptation is perhaps worth looking into though. It's not everyday you see a Rom-Com done by Shaft Studios, and actually gives the series a unique look compared to other shows from this genre.