Justin finds out that the penguin life isn't so bad, as long as you don't get bitten by the same cat every day.
Before reading Tuxedo Gin, I knew two things: that this manga was beloved by some people I know, and it was old. As in, before my time. I also concluded that I would give the first chapter a shot, then tell you whether it was worth actually reading or forgettable.
I read 3 volumes in a day. At 3AM.
Tuxedo Gin is hilarious, stupid, and yet I couldn’t stop smiling. This comedy/romance by Tokihiko Matsuura gives us Ginji, a punk/boxing upstart who’s moving on up with life when he falls in love for the first time. Just as soon as he falls in love, however, he gets “killed”. I say “killed” because he actually isn’t supposed to die yet, or so says a bald angel person who then tells Ginji that his soul is between life and death. In order to return to his body, he has to live the life of someone else until it dies naturally. He chooses the penguin life.
Yes, he becomes a penguin and attempts to live as such.
What ends up making it challenging is when, six months after lounging at an aquarium, he is then found by his first love, Minako, and now he ends up living with her. It’s all fun and games when you have a teenage boy living with a teenage girl, but he’s a penguin, which only complicates his problems but only makes me laugh out loud more.
What kept my attention aside from the batcrazy story were the characters and nice artwork. You have your delinquent with a heart of gold, the beautiful yet kind smart working girl, the friend that’s the dumb delinquent, and even a father who’s just plain irresponsible. Combine that with a penguin who can’t swim or fly, and you have the makings of a comedy. The makings of a romance begin when Minako always thinks of Ginji as she heads to the same location of their failed first date, or when Ginji remarks on how great Minako is, in her presence…in penguin form. And it’s all drawn with the amount of hilariousness that still stands the test of time.
As it’s early going (there’s 15 volumes), finding a balance between comedy and romance is tough, but Tuxedo Gin has it all going right now. They could do without Minako getting abducted almost all the time, though it is hilarious when penguin Gin drives his fin in the butt of the abductor, but I thought I’d find something to complain about with this series, but I’d rather just read more right now.
Where you can read Tuxedo Gin:
First Chapter Preview: http://www.vizmanga.com/reader/3384