So I found out some time back that Hana to Akuma has actually been completed. There I was wondering why it never got updated, and guess what genius? The whole ‘I-won’t-read-this-chapter-I’ll-wait-for-the-next-so-I-can-read-it-in-one-go’ strategy has quite obviously backfired.
Just to sum up Hana to Akuma, it’s about this 14-year-old girl who lives with a demon. He’s been taking care of her ever since she was in diapers coz she was abandoned in front of his huchamungous mansion, and guess what happens?
I never quite got why I enjoy reading it; I started following it quite early, and I would read it whenever a new chapter came out, but I never cemented an attachment to it. It was like a good passing acquaintance rather a friend, I would say. But I think that might have changed with the last chapter.
I was actually really curious about how Oto Hisamu would end the whole story. Hana to Akuma carries the whole ‘happy ending’ atmosphere from the 1st chapter all the way to its penultimate 57th one, so I seriously wondering how it would finish – she was a human with a limited lifespan, and he was a demon who would continue living for countless millennia after her.
So anyway, the spoilers (and comparison) start here so if you don’t want to read either one, you can stop reading now.
But, I mean, I would appreciate it if you didn’t. That’s why I wrote this post.
The moment I finished reading Hana to Akuma, I immediately thought about how differently the relationship issue was tackled against the stereotypical immortal(ish) x human storyline – and Twilight just had to be the classic choice. Just before I start with the comparison, I would just like to state that I am not a Twitard and neither am I a hater. I’m taking the neutral Stephen King view on it – I don’t think Twilight is a good book, but I understand that it’s enjoyable. As long as it’s enjoyable (as stated by girls and women of all ages, and even a coupla guys), it’s good enough to be on the shelf. People read novels to have a good time, not to analyze the way writers rape the thesaurus or obliterate the English grammar.
You can argue that a demon ≠ vampire, but what I’m going to talk about here is the decisions made by the two main characters from the respective manga and book that concerns the eternal life of one and the limited time of the other. What I’m comparing is basically the portrayal of romance in both.
So anyway Hana to Akuma’s 58th chapter ended with Hana pushing daisies at an old age. It features Vivi and Hana’s two children (and I just found it so ridiculously sweet how they are pretty much all demon except that flowers don’t wilt when they touch them), and Vivi visiting Hana’s grave.
There was a brief flashback of Vivi staying by Hana’s side as she lived her final days as an old woman, with him holding her hand. It was from that moment on that I then firmly believe that Hana to Akuma is perhaps one of the most loyally romantic reads I’ve come across – made even more so by the sort of childish atmosphere that had been sustained throughout. He stayed with her as she grew old, and she did all she could to prepare him for a life without her – they both knew he would outlive her, yet they still stayed together. Until the very end.
I’m going to compare this with Isabella Swan who felt insecure growing old unlike her Edward Cullen. Despite the fact that he was alright sparkling on without her for the next few millennia, she wasn’t and demanded to be turned into a vampire. You’ve got such a limited amount of time woman – don’t spend it complaining and wondering if he’ll love you back when you’re a wrinkle bag. While that insecurity may be realistic – it’s not very romantic.
But anyway we all knew she was going to turn into a vampire from the moment we read the summary of Twilight so there should have been minimal anxiety from the readers at this.
Hana to Akuma closes up with Vivi visiting Hana’s grave, and even if he does look a little sad he wasn’t drowning in his angst. I’m going to compare this to Mr. Edward Cullen who tried to get that Italian vampire organization thingy to kill him when he found out (thought) Ms. Swan had kicked the bucket.
I never found romance + death romantic. In fact, I always found it annoying. Romance + sacrifice is different, but death? It’s cowardly. It’s not cool. And it practically goes against the concept of love in the first place. Seriously, a guy committing suicide for a girl is just the epitome of un-cool.
Well in the defence of love, I suppose romance isn’t all about being cool.
I am not much of a romance fan. But there are some lovey-dovey scenes out there that can strum the strings of my stalwart, tough heart at times – and that was exactly what Hana to Akuma did. As a whole, I think the manga is just above average. One of the handful of really romance-y shoujos that I can say I find enjoyable. The ending, however, was so gently, bitterly sweet that I just had to write this post. Even if I seriously don’t have the time right now.
Hope you had a nice weekend!