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REVIEW: A Condition Called Love GN 1


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Samiamiam



Joined: 31 Jan 2017
Posts: 209
PostPosted: Thu Mar 26, 2020 5:34 am Reply with quote
Girls are only allowed to like perfectly sanitized and socially acceptable media. Only the healthiest of relationships can be portrayed otherwise we might get so confused and chase after those bad vampire boys who abuse us.

God I'm sick of people treating all media for women like we're children. Can't show anything that not 100% perfect or we might get the wrong idea about relationships. We're too fragile for any of the problematic media- it might confuse us. I like Rebecca but her reviews about girls media are very much "anything that isn't the ideal standard for relationships in is too much for girls to be able to handle because they can't separate fiction from their real life" and god its tiring sometimes. Its like she's a producer on Disney Channel and making sure everything is family friendly enough and not going to badly influence The Children (well, in this case The Women). The sort of review would never happen in a series aimed at guys because men can handle fiction, but women apparently aren't allowed to according to reviews like these- if we read them, we'd be too vulnerable Crying or Very sad
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pharmboy23
Get off my lawn!Get off my lawn!


Joined: 05 Oct 2018
Posts: 156
PostPosted: Thu Mar 26, 2020 5:55 am Reply with quote
Well, I’m a guy and my take on the story was even harsher than Rebecca’s. It’s the presentation that this is all perfectly sweet and normal that makes me shudder. I’ve read far more provocative stuff than this - I LIKE Happy Sugar Life and Scum’s Wish, which are multitudes more lurid, but it’s not framed like a story where the girl should swoon over this guy whose attitude to her is creepy AF.

The guy in this story reads like a predator and treating that scenario like it’s totally normal is terrible. He doesn’t get called out on it in this volume and that’s a problem.

I’ve read a LOT of shojo and have had exactly two manga volumes make my skin physically crawl while I was reading them. This is one of them.
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Princess_Irene



Joined: 16 Dec 2008
Posts: 1857
Location: The castle beyond the Goblin City
PostPosted: Thu Mar 26, 2020 7:04 am Reply with quote
Samiamiam wrote:


God I'm sick of people treating all media for women like we're children. Can't show anything that not 100% perfect or we might get the wrong idea about relationships.


I really should leave well enough alone here, (Whiskyii, I think you're right) but for some reason this is bugging me.

This is not what I meant.

I'm sorry if it came off that way. (And looking back, I can see how it did.) Girls can, and should, read whatever the hell media they want to, and are at no more risk for not being aware that it's fiction than anyone else.

There are tons of male-oriented stories that are just as, if not more, toxic, playing with Madonna/whore dichotomies, idealization of subservience, and damsel-in-distress tropes that sell terrible relationships to men. I don't like those either.

I didn't like this book (not whole series, just the one book) because it plays into tropes I don't enjoy in fiction and doesn't do them quite well enough for me to overlook my initial distaste or for me to whole-heartedly recommend it to people who do like them. (Like Ten Count - not my thing, but definitely well done.)

My other job curses me with the inability to not take fiction in a historical context, and that's why I brought up YA's history with this flavor of romance. It's not a judgement on anyone who likes it.

EDIT: Calmed down a bit and fixed a couple things. Smile
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Samiamiam



Joined: 31 Jan 2017
Posts: 209
PostPosted: Thu Mar 26, 2020 11:51 am Reply with quote
Princess_Irene wrote:
Samiamiam wrote:


God I'm sick of people treating all media for women like we're children. Can't show anything that not 100% perfect or we might get the wrong idea about relationships.


I really should leave well enough alone here, (Whiskyii, I think you're right) but for some reason this is bugging me.

This is not what I meant.

I'm sorry if it came off that way. (And looking back, I can see how it did.) Girls can, and should, read whatever the hell media they want to, and are at no more risk for not being aware that it's fiction than anyone else.

There are tons of male-oriented stories that are just as, if not more, toxic, playing with Madonna/whore dichotomies, idealization of subservience, and damsel-in-distress tropes that sell terrible relationships to men. I don't like those either.

I didn't like this book (not whole series, just the one book) because it plays into tropes I don't enjoy in fiction and doesn't do them quite well enough for me to overlook my initial distaste or for me to whole-heartedly recommend it to people who do like them. (Like Ten Count - not my thing, but definitely well done.)

My other job curses me with the inability to not take fiction in a historical context, and that's why I brought up YA's history with this flavor of romance. It's not a judgement on anyone who likes it.

EDIT: Calmed down a bit and fixed a couple things. Smile


I understand, I might have been a bit harsh in my comment too. Its just really frustrating because pretty much every review of shoujo/romance manga has the mandatory "this is problematic" section where everyone can be reminded of what is bad for women to like and how media made by women for women is actually bad for them. People bringing up Twilight in the comments brought it out in me I guess. Poor women, obsessed with bad boys, if only they could watch/read things that are more appropriate for them ect ect
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pharmboy23
Get off my lawn!Get off my lawn!


Joined: 05 Oct 2018
Posts: 156
PostPosted: Thu Mar 26, 2020 12:10 pm Reply with quote
Sadly I don’t feel like a debate here is going to accomplish much, so I’ll wish you good fortune with your reading and leave it at that.
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Princess_Irene



Joined: 16 Dec 2008
Posts: 1857
Location: The castle beyond the Goblin City
PostPosted: Thu Mar 26, 2020 1:05 pm Reply with quote
Samiamiam wrote:


I understand, I might have been a bit harsh in my comment too. Its just really frustrating because pretty much every review of shoujo/romance manga has the mandatory "this is problematic" section where everyone can be reminded of what is bad for women to like and how media made by women for women is actually bad for them. People bringing up Twilight in the comments brought it out in me I guess. Poor women, obsessed with bad boys, if only they could watch/read things that are more appropriate for them ect ect


I understand, and it's been a frustration for me,too. Mostly I mention it in my reviews because every single time I teach a YA lit class I have multiple students discuss how they never saw healthy romance in their teen romance books. I thought I brought it up in reviews of male-oriented titles, too, but maybe I just end up not reviewing as many of those. (I read 'em, though, because I will read literally anything.) But anyway, I'll keep in mind how it's being interpreted and you can know that it's never that it shouldn't exist or is corrupting feeble womankind and more that it's there in the same way I'd mention excessive gore or something.

Fun fact that only marginally has to do with this: I had an older friend named Shanna after the Kathleen Woodiweiss romance novel Shanna, which popularized the, ah, forceful romance genre in the 1970s.

Anyway, thank you for discussing this with me. I really do appreciate it.
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meruru



Joined: 16 Jun 2009
Posts: 397
PostPosted: Thu Mar 26, 2020 4:25 pm Reply with quote
Naotomato wrote:
I like how everyone including the writer are saying how she is in a toxic relationship yet they haven't caught up to the series like I have.


True, I hadn't read that far, but also I had actually completely already guessed the twist you wrote up in your spoiler tag. I never thought the author was trying to write a yandere. What I don't like about it is that it accidentally super gives off creepy stalker vibes while at the same time it has this weird cognitive dissonance where the audience is supposed to think its cute. (Or maybe not, seeing as some of Hotaru's friends kind of question it?) It was just too weird a dissonance for me to like it no matter what the eventual explanation was.
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Zandy Brown



Joined: 08 Oct 2019
Posts: 10
PostPosted: Thu Mar 26, 2020 8:32 pm Reply with quote
Oh man. Did I take a wrong turn and stumble into Tumblr? Kinda sad colleges are now churning out graduates that use “toxic” in reviews. Oh well, at least there was no “triggering”. Ultimately is the story entertaining? I thought it was. Using fiction as a baseline for real life is not something a normal person does. I mean really, if you read a Stephen King’s Thinner are you thinking, “Wow. That’s toxic relationship.”
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Key
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Joined: 03 Nov 2003
Posts: 16073
Location: Indianapolis, IN (formerly Mimiho Valley)
PostPosted: Thu Mar 26, 2020 10:12 pm Reply with quote
Zandy Brown wrote:
I mean really, if you read a Stephen King’s Thinner are you thinking, “Wow. That’s toxic relationship.”

That's a wholly different case. In that story there's no attempt to portray it as anything but negative.

There are good ways to handle this kind of thing without Disneyfing it. A good example of a manga/anime series that I think handles this kind of thing right is The Ancient Magus's Bride. There's been a lot of unhealthiness in the relationship between Chise and Elias (on both their parts) for a lot of reasons, but I never felt that that manga-ka was ever saying that it wasn't problematic.
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