Here you will find honest, intelligent manga reviews for shojo fans of all ages.

Jul 19, 2010

Manhwa of the Month: Pig Bride Vol. 5 - KookHwa Huh / SuJin Kim

Synopsis: Mu-Yeon returns after enrolling at Si-Joon's private high school. Although Si-Joon and Mu-Yeon accept their feelings and are ready for wedded bliss, now Mu-Yeon must pass approval of Si-Joon's grandfather. Mu-Yeon enters the Miss Beauty Pageant to the chagrin of Doe-Doe. Ji-Oh gets highly embarrased, and Doe-Doe's "mom" has finally gone too far. The ending of this five volume series is anything but predictable.

Review: You can tell the author of this series really enjoyed writing the characters, because she didn't want to stop. She told the story right up to the final pages and even ran out of room to do an epilogue. If I had been the editor, I would have told the author to condense the first three-quarters of the book into a smaller storyline, and then encouraged more post marital and epilogue storyline. I don't really think the audience needed Si-Joon's grandfather's approval or the entire process of the Miss Beauty Pageant. The only major plot resolution with the beauty pageant arch was the revelation of what was to become of Doe-Doe. However, I'm sure the artist was dying to draw the cute fashion designs that were needed for the beauty pageant scenes. One of my favorite scenes in this volume was the actual wedding. The traditional Korean garb of the bride and groom is drawn in detail, and the characters play their parts quite well.

Speaking of the artwork, this volume has some of the best color work I've seen from the series. The cover art of the two main characters looks really nice, even with Si-Joon's pink eyes and hair. I guess it's because Mu-Yeon looks so cute now without her mask! There's also a color insert of the four main characters, which kind of stunned me when I opened the book.

I really like this piece. Maybe it's because I'm partial to butterflies, but I think the close-ups in the four split frames that bleed into each other is some of the best portraiture I've seen by SuJin Kim. It really envelopes the personality of the characters.

Then there is this concluding image of the characters on the back of the book in chibi-form that is very endearing. A happy, sparkly wedding day image of the characters that hits on the fun side of their personalities.

Overall, this series was a fun read, and I'm so glad Yen Press chose to share it with us. It would be fun to see these characters have another adventure together. I think the author felt the same way too, and that's why she couldn't stop writing. In the back she writes a quick epilogue telling what happens 25 years from now. Also, there is a telling of how Mu-Yeon ended up with the mask of a pig. A fun piece of trivia for readers. If you like fantasy and romance with humor to boot, then there's no doubt you'll enjoy the story of Pig Bride.

Romance Rating: Cuddly - Even with all the threats of consummation, the author doesn't go there even after the wedding. Cute and sweet kisses during the wedding is all we get.

Media Status: - Pig Bride is available in English in five volumes from Yen Press.


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