Kimi Iro Focus

This is the story of a guy named Oji who dreams of being a reporter that goes to the front lines of dangerous situations to bring back photographs and record history as it happens. However, his dream has little to do with what this manga is actually about. Rather, he spends the entire manga taking pictures of girls. There are some over reaching plot lines related to the relationship between him and various characters such as his childhood friend Sumire and the president of the photography club, Ran, as well as some conflicts with the newspaper club. However, the vast majority of the manga is barely linked stories of him convincing a number of girls to allow him to take their pictures in a number of different scenarios. That’s pretty much it. Hence the story was pretty repetitive and not all that great. There was a pretty unique mechanic of him going into something I call “sparkly mode” where he did an instant personality switch to a photography prodigy with a complete lack of common sense and smooth talking abilities allowing him to make the girls he was photographing seemingly lose their common sense as well. It was used almost entirely for comedic effect, and to that extent it was used very well most of the time, though as it was used almost exactly the same each time it got repetitive towards the end. However, overall the story was pretty funny throughout. Some of the characters were interesting. I especially liked the side character Shinobu who was somewhat crazy and obsessed but awesome. But there was little development in that regard, and the development that did occur mostly seemed forced or random and wasn’t really much of a draw. So the primary draw story wise was definitely the comedy.

However, the biggest draw overall was definitely supposed to be the art. From what I’ve read of others opinions on the manga it seem to be great, and as this is a manga focused on photography its clearly very important. Unfortunately I didn’t like it that much. I can definitely acknowledge that its high quality. Just not in a style that I particularly enjoy. I’m not very well versed on this aspect, and thus I can’t really discuss in depth why this is so, so that’s all I’ll say on that. The major exception to that however were the expressions of the characters. They were some of the best I’ve seen in any manga which is especially great as they were a crucial aspect of the manga. One of the key points of taking photography for Oji was first eliciting some sort of strong emotion from the model before taking the pictures. Even though most of the plot lines leading up to this emotion were pretty weak, the expressions were enough to strongly convey that he was doing this effectively, and that it really did matter.

Overall a decent manga that doesn’t have a strong story but is pretty funny and has arguably good art, especially the expressions.

7/10

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