To absolutely no one’s surprise, Yuri is one of my favourite genres. Chances are if you show me a new title, I’ll give it a shot. I first heard of How Do We Relationship? When Viz Media tweeted its cover some months back. Ever since I’ve kept an eye on it waiting for its release day and it has finally come. With art and story from Tamifull, will this be a Yuri delight? Or a total letdown? Let’s get right to it and find out if How Do We Relationship volume 1 is worth reading.
A multilayered look at a relationship
We start in an interesting place. Our two main characters Miwa and Saeko have just spent the night together. They’re both into girls and decided to date because there wasn’t anybody else around. All is not ideal as maybe they’re not as perfect for each other as they thought. As the title suggests, they have to find out exactly how to make a relationship work. What happens when the person you’re dating is fundamentally different from you?
What I think is quite smart about this series is that we get both of them in a relationship right away. Yes, you have most of the first chapter dedicated to the couple’s meeting; after that, it is about the relationship. It’s not something so straightforward either, in fact, it’s messy and complicated, and there’s a sort of beauty in that. After all, the couple did decide to start dating each other out of convenience. Sure they like each other, but the pair haven’t taken the time to get to know each other.
If that wasn’t enough Miwa and Saeko don’t have to deal with just what others think of them but what they think of each other. This is where the title aptly fits because it starts to answer the all-important question. For them, it’s about understanding each other and what they want.
In terms of dating Saeko is much more experienced than Miwa, so she has to get adjusted to her pace and vice versa. Ultimately it’s about compromising with each other and making sure they feel comfortable. This comes with growing pains and messy situations, but the important thing is they make it work. Even if you can’t relate to the LGBTQ+ aspects, you can connect in some capacity to this.
Saeko reflects some of the fears of being in a relationship. Fear of rejection and judgment are all concerns that she deals with for a good part of the volume. These issues are relatable to anyone, but the characters point out the added pressure from society due to being an LBGTQ+ couple. Thankfully they do slowly open up to each other, and work on the relationship, it’s adorable.
Miwa and Saeko are our two protagonists for this story and I have to say I love them both. They bounce well off each other, giving how contrasting their personalities are. Miwa is the archetypal more quiet and shy character. On the other hand, you have Saeko who is more outgoing and definitely crasser. At any opportunity, she will not hesitate to comment on how much she loves Miwas boobs. When they argue, you end up rooting for them to be able to make it work, I know I did. While reading the volume, I became deeply invested in their relationship.
The mangaka excels at making this series feel cute. One of the reasons that I like Yuri so much is because in many ways it feels wholesome. That is precisely the sentiment I got while reading through, wholesome cuteness. When Miwa gets flustered or even when Saeko is crass, they both still feel cute.
I just loved the art style, and it made me enjoy the series even more. On that note, something that I will never get used to is seeing tongues in manga. They weird me out, and I don’t like them. Not that it takes anything away from this volume, but I never had a chance to bring it up previously.
Is How Do We Relationship volume 1 worth reading?
It’s always great when a manga that you’ve been looking forward to exceeds your expectations. Certainly, it manages to differentiate itself from other Yuri titles that I read. For all the manga that I read, I don’t tend to reflect too deeply after reading unless it’s one of my favourite series. However, at work the next day all I could think about was Miwa and Saekos relationship and how I wanted to see more. There was something about its straightforwardness and sincerity that left me hooked.
It’s been a while since I felt that I needed the second volume of a series immediately. Sadly, my heart is broken because I will have to wait quite some time to get my hands on it. How Do We Relationship volume 1 is worth reading and becoming a fulltime member of your collection!
So have you picked up volume 1 of How Do We Relationship? Let me know if you were captivated by it just as much as I was.
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