On Several Things of Utmost Importance
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multa's avatar
By multa   |   
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The randomness above gained a ginormous response of a total of three comments, which was three more than I expected, all essentially wondering what the heck is going on. For your peace of mind, watch this from 11:25 and this thing from 00:35 on. Then go watch the 1931 (i.e. better) version of the film just because.


Dear Journal,

stuff straight outta manga has been happening recently. I am transferring to this elite boarding school called Ohto- ahem, École Polytechnique. :trollface: Before anyone asks, I won't be getting a fancy gala uniform because I'm just a Master student. I feel like the coolest troll on earth, which is not necessarily a good thing. Can multa survive the merciless competition and gruelling workload in a prestigious French institution of higher education? Stay tuned for the next gripping episode.


While we are at it, why not review some Germanga? I'm putting this bow here because it happens to fit the topic. Minor spoilers ahead.


A German yuri anthology: Lily

Fireangels Verlag is an independent German publisher of original German-language BL/GL manga, novels, artbooks and merchandise. The company originally caught my attention as being small, easy to approach and willing to promote young artists. And yes, they do have a small but existent yuri line that I decided to support from my wallet and ordered all 3 volumes of the yuri anthology Lily published so far. Due to lack of submissions, Lily is not a bound book like its BL equivalents but an A5-sized magazine of around 30 pages, well printed on good quality paper though.

Lily 1 (August 2008) features the short comic Unusual Love by Monique "vanlau" Krüger, an yurified version of Schneewittchen und die sieben Zwerge (Snow White and the Seven Dwarves) by Niki Smith as well as a couple of art contest winners. An A4-sized poster and a sticker of the cover illustration by Diana "Crow" Liesaus are included as extras.
Unusual Love, the YaYuCo'07 art contest winner, is essentially a story about friendship between two very different girls. That is, friendship with a couple of underwear shots and the compulsory panel that suggests something further and is not making the story any deeper to me. There is little room for character development in just nine pages and this comic would have required more. The artwork and layout are a tad sketchy but a good start.
To whoever remembers Yurimm Fairy Tales, the 14-page Schneewittchen is nothing new. The woodcut-like illustrations, definitely my favourites in this volume, are stylish and suit the fairytale atmosphere.

Lily 2: Wie Blätter im Wind (Like Leaves in the Wind, August 2009) contains a single 30-page comic, written and illustrated by Susette "Susutaru" Bätz. The story features Chieri who, having been cheated on by yet another boyfriend, finds a female companion, Law, for her holiday trip instead. They end up having sex and seem to be getting closer to each other (in this order). Then suddenly, tragedy.
In brief, Wie Blätter im Wind reminds me once again of what we Westerners could learn from manga: how to manage empty space and take our time to tell a story. The comic is fast-paced and suffers from too much happening in too few pages at the cost of character development. To make the ending more meaningful I would have liked to see Chieri and Law's relationship deepen before rushing to the latter part.
The artwork is simple but fit for a relationship-centered story, the page layouts clean but often rather packed. The 12 color pages, rendered with markers, deserve a mention for looking good. Switching narrators in a story this short is nothing but confusing.

Lily 3: Der Spinnendämon (The Spider Demon, September 2010) is again a single comic, this time with a traditional Japanese setting and by Christian Pick. In addition to the main story of just 20 pages, the volume contains extra illustrations by Pick and a 2-page full-color gag comic featuring Fireangels' mascots, illustrated by uke-a-chan. In the eponymous main story, Tatami (is that even a name? I cannot but think about the mats), an orphan from a small mountain village, is sacrificed to appease a fearsome spider demon that has settled in the proximity, and you guess the rest.
This is certainly my least favourite of the three Lily volumes, mainly because the story has little substance to it. Pick has a distinctive, angular drawing style that, together with the tight storytelling, gives the work more of a Western look. While the extra illustrations are nothing to speak of, the cover and the single colour page are beautiful and atmospheric.

That makes one friendship-type story, one retelling of a classic fairytale, one apparently straight young woman with bad experiences with men and one Japanese myth: light, formulaic yuri that has little to do with serious real-life relationships between women. Never mind. Most yuri is not about adult women who love other women anyway.

To me Lily seems to suffer from a lack of interest and maybe dedication on behalf of the authors. However, it is a good attempt and certainly worth your money at 3 and a half euros per volume. Optionally, pick up some of Fireangels' BL titles if that is more of your cup of tea. As for me, I'm off to read some Eriko Tadeno.
anonymous's avatar
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rikkaruohimus's avatar
rikkaruohimusHobbyist General Artist
Syö paljon patonkia ja ole onnellinen ja silleen!!
Kusobae-chan's avatar
Kusobae-chan Traditional Artist
Have a great time in France :D

Damn. I wish I could read them. I should've transferred to a waldorf school earlier.
A SPIDER!!! A SPIDER!!! What on earth did she feed to that Latrodectus to get it grow that big?!
And what strange spinnerets.

My dad came all the way here to lecture me about tampons and pads and how they shouldn't be flushed down the toilet. He's seriously like some creepy stalker. My whole damn apartment smells like a filthy bar now.
multa's avatar
Thanks. I'll try my best :salute:

Trust me, it is no mind-blowing yuri experience you are losing. However, it's interesting to see what Fireangels and a bunch of young artists can do. I like the concept to the point of having considered submitting something myself, as I certainly would like this anthology to grow and prosper. Problem is, I don't have quite as much time as I wanted.

Haha, YOU should draw a spider demoness story. That would mean correctly drawn spiders at the very least.

Tampons and pads? How should he be so concerned about them? I haven't heard my dad so much as utter the word "tampon" once in his life. I guess I would be scared shitless if he suddenly appeared here to lecture me on the topic.
Kusobae-chan's avatar
Kusobae-chan Traditional Artist
Didn't sound like it.
It would be just a comic about spiders with some girls on the background. :iconspiderplz1:

The only question that had nothing to do with tampons or bras was "Where's the nearest bar?"
VFreie's avatar
Was gibt's?

...But by the sound of it, I assume it is something cool. Most everything that includes Garde du Corps regiments tends to be automatically cool.
multa's avatar
Watch this from 11:25 and this thing from 00:35 on, and let me know should you ever come across the song. As for the film, the coolness rate of the 1931 version is substantially higher but these girls do have better music.
VFreie's avatar
Got it. Why hello there, new music obsession of the week!
NuttyNuti's avatar
NuttyNutiHobbyist General Artist
*tries to put this into Google Translate and only finds out that it's something about military*
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