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Ouran High School Host Club Manga Volume 1

Posted by Emi on June 22, 2006

(Rushed entry for the sake of getting something on the blog. I'll edit it later.)

When I first read Ouran High School Host Club, it was on a Photobucket account. It was just something to read since I was bored on a Sunday afternoon (when I should have been doing my homework probably), and it was worthwhile despite the unusual translations and I had no idea what Oshin was. XD It was pretty difficult to follow. The manga-ka and her crew sure go through a lot of trouble to add in detail. @_@ I read the eight chapters that were translated, and I thought Damn. It was getting good… because I got to the part where Tamaki scolded Haruhi and swore not to talk to her until she admitted her mistake. That's when I brought up Google and did a little research and found out it was licensed by VIZ for their Shoujo Beat line. I still didn't know what Oshin was though…

Initial Thought: Whoohoo! Professionally edited and translated version coming to the US. I was hoping it would provide translation and cultural explanations since I REALLY needed some clarification.

When I bought the first volume of Ouran High School Host Club (with three other volumes of Shoujo Beat manga debuting in the US and got a t-shirt *smile*) I was nearly jumping when I left the Suncoast, and didn't even notice how light my wallet was. On the ride home, I immediately began reading Ouran volume 1. (I got really carsick so I had to stop for a while and take a quick nap.) At home, I finished. I mean, I got really dizzy, and I still didn't know what the hell Oshin was since the fine text said, "If you don't know about 'Oshin', check the internet" in chapter 1. However, I loved it. I reread it several times. And I got a bonus the online scans didn't provide: the extra story in the end of volume 1, which was the most hilarious crack-story I've ever seen in manga.

What bugged me about reading Ouran was all the text. There's a lot of it, seriously, and the pages seem crowded with panels and sfx's. (Kind of wish VIZ kept the original Japanese sfx's since some of the English ones cover the art. Example: Tamaki's face is covered in chapter 3, the Renge arc, when she says, "In short–a lousy lover!") It's like the manga-ka tried to stuff three chapters worth of stuff into one, but I understood that since there are so many main characters and LaLa magezine (the manga anthology that Ouran appears in) chapters are generally 30 (?) pages long.

The art was unusual at first, but you get used to it. The pools of water as eyes thing was pretty odd. I didn't notice it until chapter 3 when all the hosts were tearing up. Also, the characters' limbs are super-skinny, but you get used to that too. Basically, anything that seems atypical is easy to get used to.

I don't think I laughed out loud reading a manga since… oh man, I don't know when, but I laughed several times reading only the first volume. Bisco Hatori is a genius when it comes to jokes, especially how the host act compared to the "commoner" Haruhi, and their reactions to instant coffee and instant noodles. XD Tamaki sure is the princely character but he acts like a crackhead too. Ah, gotta love it.

Obviously, Ouran High School Host Club is my new obsession and it may not die down quickly like previous obsessions. *cough*Nar–*cough* 


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