Paradise Kiss: A Coming of Agency Tale

A really good article on one of my favorite manga/anime series. Ai Yazawa has a knack for heartbreaking but real stories.

I Have a Heroine Problem


Paradise KissA Coming of Agency Tale

Manga/Anime/Live Action Film

Summary: Hayasaka Yukari never considered a life beyond prep school and college exams, until she is approached by a group of students from Yazawa School for the Arts asking her to model for their senior art show.  Yukari questions everything she ever knew when confronted with an outlook on life completely different from her own… and when she meets George Koizumi, the charismatic, eccentric leader of the group.

Potential triggers: Abuse, rape, transphobia

Would I recommend it? Yes

Paradise Kiss could easily have been a standard “Girl meets boy, girl’s life is changed forever” narrative.  Luckily, in the capable hands of Yazawa Ai, it instead becomes a beautifully drawn, thoughtful meditation on adulthood, ambition, and the ways we hurt the ones we care about.  With the issues of agency, identity, and non-conformism front and center,Paradise Kiss has…

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