Sweet and fluffy. Just watch out for out-of-control rodents!
Writer/Artist: Eiki Eiki
Translation: Ken Wakita
Adaptation: Ken Wakita
What They Say
Asahi Sarutaa has worked hard to realize his dream of working as a train attendant at Minami Kitazawa Station. The naive Asahi is unaware, though, of Minami's policy to hire only the most handsome of attendants. He finds this out quickly, when he meets his co-workers for the first time and sees that they are all sparkling beauties!
This series is out of DMP's Doki-Doki line from Shinshokan and is distinguished by its smaller B6 size to the standard June release. Readers accustomed to the larger size for $12.95 will be disappointed, but the print quality is on a par with the better DMP releases, though one can forget consoling oneself with a color insert; there isn't one.
Eiki Eiki's character designs are attractive and distinctive. Her skill at layout, panel placement and judicious use of tone and panel decoration energizes the page and emphasizes the lighthearted comedy of the series. However, her talents do not extend to representations of wildlife. In a shocking departure from her comic stylizations, she presents a "naturalistic" rendering of a prairie dog which takes up three quarters of the page and is obviously copied from a picture. The overall effect is as if one were looking at the result of Albrecht Durer drawing while on a drunk.
The text reads well with a distinctive voice for all the characters. Any localizations are inoffensive and grammatical and spelling errors, if any, weren't noticeable. Sfx are presented as either substitutions or as subtext with the art unaffected.
Contents (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers):
The Minami-Kitazawa line is an unusual branch of the railway system in that all of its young employees are good-looking, and it's the policy of the railway to encourage its handsome employees in their idol status which only enhances the railroad's profitability and success. This is the scene onto which the newly graduated Asahi Saruta arrives with aspirations of becoming a railroad conductor as his father had been.
Saruta has some problems in adjusting to the routine and the special mission at the M-K line. In truth, unlike his sempai who all have significant accomplishments to their credit as well as good looks, Saruta's only real recommendation for the job at the M-K line is that, well, he's cute. However, his sincerity and charming naivete make up for his incompetence and the bulk of this slim narrative is made up his attempts to learn from his sempai and realize his dream of becoming a conductor.
The only sinker in all this froth is the introduction of Pure, the prairie dog assumed to be a hamster. It looks absolutely rabid and seems angry and nasty even when it finally gets to be in more stylized form. Its introduction is so jarring that it takes one out of the moment and changes the mood entirely.
Train*Train may not have a dramatic or compelling story line, but the humor is light and sweet, and it does give its intended audience what they want - vignettes centering on their favorite cute guy.
Very appropriate for the novice BL reader who is looking to spend her babysitting money or for those looking for some light comedy tinged with a tiny bit of innuendo.