Not much in the mood to write the usual insightful and passionately-charged entry, so I’ll spitball the entire series in a few short paragraphs.
The main character’s okay. She has a strong mindset that not a lot of Shoujo leads have. Though, by the end, she doesn’t change very much. Her logic is also questionable.
The two male leads are both stereotypes, both in personality and design. The design is to be expected, as the artist for this title is known for illustrating Yaoi titles. Their personalities led me to believe that the artist was also responsible for the story, as they both seemed as though they could wind up with each other as opposed to the female lead.
The ending is a bullshit “____ years later…” cop-out that I despise seeing in stories. Not to mention, the once poor, clinging to every paycheck female lead suddenly gets a letter from a previously unknown Uncle or something saying that she’s the heir to his fortune with two chapters left in the story. Rushed. Stupid. Clamoring for a happy ending. Horrible.
Character interactions are a bit of a plus. If anything about this story feels genuine, that would be it. They all have a good bit of chemistry, even if the stereotypes drag them down the whole way. Kinda wish they focused more on the painting, though.
Speaking of painting, the art for this manga disgusted me. It may be because I’m heterosexual male, but I don’t much care to see males drawn in a “bishie” form. It’s to the point where one of the male leads are thought to be a girl at the beginning of the story, only to say “Whoops, I’m a guy!” later on in the story. Fun fact: I never noticed this transition from girl to boy, so when the characters started addressing him as “he,” I became incredibly confused for, like, three chapters before looking it up. I can’t say the art was bad, though. With painting being one of the focal points of the story, you’d expect it to be highlighted a tad more than the things hovering around it. It isn’t.
Up and down series. Emotionally, I was done with it by chapter ten or so. Couldn’t get into it, but it continued to impress me objectively with its characters’ insights and interaction. The ending really bogged down the score. God, the ending was fucking awful. It’s unfortunate that the ending became the major highlight, because the series doesn’t have a lot of huge flaws otherwise. Oh well.
Personal Score: C-
Critical Score: C