That’s My Atypical Girl Volume 1
I was curious about That’s My Atypical Girl volume 1, a digital-only manga release with story by Sohachi Hagimoto and art by Renji Morita, because of the premise, in which an aspiring manga creator meets a dedicated fan of his work.
Yokoi is an unsuccessful manga artist because his stories are gloomy and he doesn’t draw very well. He lives cheaply and survives by drawing sexy fan comics. Saito, the fan, shows up at his apartment one day and just doesn’t leave.
This was much creepier than I was expecting, in part because of the level of obsession Saito demonstrates from the beginning. She never smiles. She has scars on her wrist. She’s clearly not typical, ignoring normal behavior expectations, as Yokoi reinforces in his internal monologue. She likes that his original story has “the bullied character stay trapped in despair.”
I’m a fan of “these two people were alone until they found each other, uniquely suited for each other” types of stories, but this goes way beyond that. I was expecting Saito to either kill him or herself much of the time.
The sparse pages, with minimal shading or background, give the whole thing a clinical feel, as though in a brightly lit interrogation room. Oddly, Yokoi calls his room a “pigsty” at one point, although the reader doesn’t see any clutter or trash.
As the story continues, we see more and more horrible things about the characters and their lives. This was alarming and depressing and very much not for me, since I couldn’t understand why Yokoi didn’t get her out of there as soon as he could.
You can read the first chapter at the publisher’s website. (The publisher provided a digital review copy.)