GuruGuru Pon-chan Vol. #03 (Mania.com)

By:Megan Lavey
Review Date: Wednesday, October 18, 2006
Release Date: Tuesday, January 31, 2006



Creative Talent
Writer/Artist:Satomi Ikezawa
Translated by:Doug Varenas
Adapted by:Doug Varenas

What They Say
Rivalry is the name of the game in this new adventure as Ponta discovers the obstacles in her path to winning Mirai's love. First there's Mirai's mother, a woman with very strong ideas about the type of girl her son should involve himself with. Can Ponta ever measure up to a mother's expectations?

Then Ponta meets Mirai's ex-girlfriend, Hana. After leaving high school, Hana became a Japanese pop idol. Now she's back and wants to relive old times. But first she'll have to contend with Ponta... whose bite may be worse than her bark!

The Review
Ponta's world starts to grow bigger as she encounters Mirai's mother - who just happens to be scared of dogs. After managing to win her over, Ponta and Mirai debut as a couple to the rest of the world by appearing together at school, but an ex-girlfriend of Mirai's appears on the scene and she's not that enamoured of Ponta, especially after a summer camping trip into the mountains where Ponta is forced to make a critical decision in saving a life. But when she sees the consequences, she's not quite sure that she's made the right decision.

I was a bit worried when I saw the somewhat repetitive storytelling in the early part of the volume. Ponta meets new person. New person is rather put off by Ponta's behavior. Ponta does her best to win that person over. Various hijinks occur and Ponta finally succeeds. This new arc with Mirai's former girlfriend, Hana, shakes up that dynamic some and Ponta is forced to make an extremely hard choice - go after the bone that changes her into a human when it gets torn off or save Hana from being drowned. Though Ponta makes the right decision, she starts to question herself when Hana's behavior is just as atrocious toward her in dog form as it was in human form.

I start off each volume equally put off by Ponta's behavior, but by the end I usually find myself enchanted by her. This volume also introduces some cute little omake chapters of Ponta as a puppy that are simply adorable and even tie loosely back into the main arc. One of the things that Ikezawa does is actually make it pretty believable that Mirai would fall for Ponta in her human form. He's taken on the task of making sure that Ponta doesn't blow her cover, but it's also apparent that he has genuine feelings for her.



Mania Grade: A-
Art Rating: B
Packaging Rating: C
Text/Translatin Rating: A
Age Rating: 13 & Up
Released By: Del Rey
MSRP: 10.99
Pages: 186
ISBN: 0345481410
Size: B6
Orientation: Right to Left