Afterschool Nightmare Vol. #06 -

Anime/Manga Reviews

Mania Grade: A

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  • Art Rating: B+
  • Packaging Rating: A
  • Text/Translatin Rating: A-
  • Age Rating: 16 & Up
  • Released By: Go! Comi
  • MSRP: 10.99
  • Pages: 200
  • ISBN: 978-1-933617-48-0
  • Size: B6
  • Orientation: Right to Left
  • Series: Afterschool Nightmare

Afterschool Nightmare Vol. #06

By Gary Thompson     June 17, 2008
Release Date: February 26, 2008

Afterschool Nightmare Vol.#06
© Go! Comi

Creative Talent
Writer/Artist:Setona Mizushiro
Translated by:Christine Schilling
Adapted by:Mallory Reaves

What They Say
Mashiro has poured his whole heart and soul into helping Kureha try to graduate from the dream class. But when a new student forces him to confront the things he hates most about himself, Kureha agrees with her! As the two are torn apart, Mashiro is stunned to find Sou stepping into their rift...

The Review
Ichijo kinda gets the screws put to him this time around. Not that things are usually a walk in the park for him, but the dealings in this volume feel more personal than previous. Most of his flaws get violently put in the spotlight in class, as per the status quo, but the effects this time are profound. A new girl is introduced who used to be a beautiful model, but because of an accident she was in, she is now living in a wheel chair and has a disfigured face. She was once famous for posing as a mermaid in a magazine ad, so naturally her dream self is a mermaid with a mask to hide her scarred face. When Ichijo tries to save her in the dream, he is dramatically punished for his constant need to play prince. This revelation carries over into the real world, where Ichijo finds that Kureha shares those sentiments.

Just to state the obvious, After School Nightmare is about identity crisis. Throughout every volume that has been released so far, Ichijo goes back and forth about his identity, but there are, of course, larger themes and questions about just what it is that makes up an identity. What do we feel has the most influence of determining who we are? Our bodies? Our minds? Ichijo is girl on bottom, guy on top, and he is trying desperately to make himself into a man. While this is continuously attacked, not just from nagging feelings, but also from Mizuhashi always trying to have his way with Ichijo, there is a more direct assault on those tenuous ideas of masculinity that Ichijo tries so hard to hold on to. His actions and motivations are very directly maligned in this volume, and by the end one can't help but feel that they are false. Everything that he has that he uses to identify himself as a man is a fabrication. And considering how the previous volumes have really been pushing this masculinity of his, this is a very big blow.

A new character introduced a the very end of the book, Momoka Ohara, serves as a great sounding board and foil to Ichijo. She is a great character in her own right, but I feel that she encapsulates the themes and dynamics that make this manga as good as she is. All the insecurities and needs, as well as the continuous struggle to come to terms with who you are. Her time with Ichijo is very illuminating, for us and for him, and I think that by the end of this volume and their time together, Ichijo's path is significantly more clear.


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