Manga Monday: Ouran High School Host Club

Published on May 4th, 2009

While alot of my Manga Monday posts have been about older and more substantial mangas this one is particularly new. Yet, despite this it has taken the anime world by storm and its defiantly a hot topic at nearly all anime conventions I’ve been attending.

It only started in 2003 and is currently spanning 13 volumes and is still growing. Its an ultimate shojo manga and its currently being published in American and Europe by the company Shojo Beat. Like many of the best mangas out there its got a hugely popular anime series which is currently being shown by Funimation in the USA.

I fell upon this manga purely by chance, in fact it was the anime I got into first of all. Its a definite romance (its a girls manga after all), its cute, its funny and of course no manga is complete without some gender bending madness.Ladies, welcome to the Ouran High School Host Club.

Before I even try to explain the story, lets talk about what a ‘host club’ is. Its defiantly a Japanese thing (oh, those crazy Japs!) where men or women can go to be entertained by members of the opposite sex. For example it is becoming hugely popular for women to go to male host clubs. Its often the job of the host to pour drinks, flirt and generally by enjoyable company and its defiantly not cheap. Its also worth mentioning that while it all sounds very sexual, sex isn’t part of the deal. These aren’t strip clubs after all.

ouran-high-school-host-club-volume-1

The story focus es on a shy and nerdy girl who is attending a very grand privet school on a scholarship. One day she wanders into the 3rd music room (home of the Host Club) and breaks a rather expensive vase. From there on in she is forced to pretend to be a guy and work as part of the host club to pay off her debt. Hilarity obviously ensues.

The Host Club is made up of some pretty odd characters. Tamaki leads the club, Kyoya is the vice president and the banker, the twins Hikaru and Kaoru add the yaoi fun while Mitsukuni(bunny) is the cutie often looked after by the silent loner known as Takashi (Mori).

Ouran High Host Club is a really light and fun manga. iI doesn’t have the serious and deep emotional story that something like, say Nana would have but what it does, it does well. It’s an easy manga to pick up and put down but it can still make you addicted just as easily. The art and story by Bisco Hatori is beautiful but still expected of the shojo style. The images are clean, crisp and beautifully detailed.

If you want to pick up something fun to read I strong recommend you pay a visit to the Host Club.

Hollie ‘pheonix’ Bennett
Hollie@comicimpact.com