Whether it's character development or just filler, the tenth volume of Love*Com continues to do what it does best: be funny.
Writer/Artist: Aya Nakahara
Translation: Pookie Rolf
Adaptatin: Pookie Rolf
What They Say
Risa got a job at a restaurant so she could be close to Otani's cram school. But now it looks like one of her coworkers wants to get close to her! Kohori is cute and short and majorly into Umibozu, but Risa just wants to be friends. When circumstances conspire to make it look like she's interested in more, what will a super-stressed Otani do?
Otani continues to study for his exams while Risa slowly begins to show improvement in her waitressing job. Unfortunately, Otani's nothing if not stressed out, because his grades aren't showing any improvement. When he calls Risa "useless," she's understandably hurt, but recognizes just how stressed and worried he is about the upcoming exams. So she forgives him and instead geeks out over Umibozo with Kohori, the short-statured cook who works at her part-time job. His interest in Risa is more romantic than the simple, friendly affection that she holds for him, and it all adds up to a misunderstanding with Otani. He quickly forgives Risa, but still pushes her away as he continues to study. It's no surprise that the good-natured, idiotic heroine manages to make things worse simply by being herself. The combination of misunderstandings, Risa not being totally honest, and Otani’s stress-induced short temper lead to a break-up that neither character is particularly happy about.
If this basic premise sounds a lot like the eighth volume's Mimi's-based plot, that's because... it is. Another relatively likable interloper appears to cause some stress between the main couple, although Kohori has much less depth and appeal than Mimi did. In good news, the insecurities are more on Otani's side this time, and any misunderstandings come about from the lack of time the two of them get to spend together. And when it's all resolved in the end, there is some good character and relationship development amidst what seems like just more filler at first glance.
But, at the end of the day, Love*Com still presents shoujo comedy with a cast of fun characters and plenty of entertainment. Almost any period of angst also pokes fun at itself; just look at Risa sitting, morose, on a bench during the middle of a tsunami while Kohori, practically being blown away, clings onto a nearby tree for dear life. Although it isn’t humor that will win over anyone who didn’t enjoy the first nine volumes (if there are any such people out there), it serves to keep this volume from descending into any sort of melodrama. So if this is the worst filler that Love*Com can come up with, then we should be in pretty good shape for the rest of the volumes.