Pure Club, an idol girl group billed as "the last miniskirt idols on Earth", are on a tour to celebrate a million sales of their latest single. The girls have countless adoring fans, but none of them are as beloved as Karen Amamiya, the center of the group. At a handshake event, Karen's line of fans dwarfs the lines of the rest of her fellow members, and she greets each and every one of them with a warm smile.
Six months later, judo jock Hikaru accidentally bumps into Nina Kamiyama in the hallway. Nina has a bit of a reputation— besides her cold and aloof personality, she's the only girl at their school who wears slacks, leading her to often be mistaken for a boy. Nina receives judgement from both male and female classmates for her clothes and her attitude, and everyone typically leaves her alone— everyone but Hikaru, who seems to recognize her from somewhere.
As it turns out, Nina is none other than Karen. Or was, until she left Pure Club after being attacked by a fan. Now she wants nothing to do with that life and is all too happy to be mistaken for a boy if it means she never gets harassed again. And so begins a deep exploration into the dark side of the idol industry.
Not Your Idol (Sayonara Miniskirt) is an ongoing Shojo manga by Aoi Makino. It started in 2018 and is running in Ribon magazine. Not Your Idol has been noted for its uncommonly realistic and somber depiction of serious subjects— a major part of the story involves an examination of the dark side of Japan's idol industry, and common themes include sexism, double-standards, assault, trauma, and victim-blaming. Two volumes are currently out, both of which have been localized by VIZ Media.
Not Your Idol contains examples of:
- Bifauxnen: Nina is often mistaken as a boy, something she confesses to being happy about.
- Boyish Short Hair: Nina cut her hair short after the handshake incident, which, combined with her wearing the boy's uniform, often leads to her being mistaken as a boy. Nina actually confesses to Hikaru that she's glad most people can't tell she's a girl— the implication being that it means no one will try harassing her.
- The Chikan: One chapter in the first volume revolves around the recent introduction of women-only cars in the area due to harassment. It also turns out that Tsuji, a shy classmate, is frequently a victim of chikan, and Nina actually witnesses her being groped while riding the train with Hikaru. Nina convinces Tsuji to point out the man, and with Hikaru's help, he's taken into custody.
- Deconstruction: Not Your Idol is an uncommonly critical look into the Japan's idol industry, broaching subjects like "love bans" and stalkers. It's worth noting it's not all bad: Nina tells Miku in Volume 2 that she still believes in all the good things idols give others, and claims that if she could do everything again, she's still become an idol.
- First-Episode Spoiler: Nina Kamiyama is Karen Amamiya, and she left Pure Club after being attacked by a fan.
- Idol Singer: Pure Club is a girl group made up of teenager girls.
- Important Haircut: Nina cuts her hair short after leaving Pure Club.
- Proper Tights with a Skirt: Miku suddenly wears a pair of black tights to school one day near the end of Volume 2, something so uncommon that Nina and Hikaru are left looking noticeably surprised. It's to hide the bruises she got on her legs after being kidnapped and assaulted the previous day.
- Scars are Forever: Nina still has a scar on her forearm from where a fan stabbed her.
- Shrinking Violet: Tsuji is so shy that her just talking is noteworthy to the other girls in class. It's also her shy, quiet nature that makes her a big target for gropers on the train— something she tries to tell Miku, but is ultimately unable to without two friends standing up for her.