Hayate the Combat Butler Manga Chapter 419 (Dreams vs. Responsibilities)

ハヤテのごとく!/Hayate no Gotoku Chapter 419 REVIEW

SPOILER Summary/Synopsis:

With Ruka choosing the path of remaining an idol, the video announcing her Las Vegas concert is played. Though Ruka rid herself of her tears and had a cheerful face, after the concert, she ignores Atsumari’s expression of appreciation.

That night at Yukari-chan House, Hayate tells Ruka that the concert was moving and that she must really like singing since she didn’t quit. Ruka tells him that the only reason she didn’t quit was because of her massive ¥150 million debt. She gets upset as she tells him that if it hadn’t been for the debt left her by her parents, she would have quit. Her tears on stage was her realizing that the reality of her situation meant she couldn’t quit being an idol.

Hayate then recalls meeting the traveling doctor, Kurosu, back stage. She says she’s been looking for someone like Hayate who could make Ruka happy. She explains things (not revealed to us readers) as to why she thinks this, so in the present, Hayate embraces Ruka and says he’ll make Ruka happy. Tis is where Nagi walked in on them.

The following day, Hayate asks Nagi for a leave of absence in order to do something for Ruka.

Thoughts/Review:

Heh! Hata-sensei, you are brilliant at never revealing your cards, aren’t you?

The thing I liked most about this chapter is the reality of the situation. Yes, we hardcore fans already knew that somehow, someway, Ruka would remain an idol and would go to Las Vegas. We saw this happen in the CTMEOY anime series that Hata-sensei drafted.  However, the key thing was to make this happen without it looking forced or faked, and Hata-sensei pulled that off brilliantly.

For those readers of this blog who are still in school at some level, you have your whole life in front of you.  No doubt, you have dreams of what you’d like to do when you become an adult, or when you finish college. Dreams are good, but sometimes, reality and responsibility mean making very hard choices.

I recall my own dreams from high school. I wanted to be the one to create a HAL 9000 computer, complete with visual, audio, and keyboard interfaces, capable of natural language speech, and capable of learning and adapting its Artificial Intelligence to become better and better. Unfortunately, a large amount of money I had been awarded to attend school was not there when I arrived as the fund had been drained by others who’d been similarly awarded monies for that year.

Since I had a mobile home to pay for, the lot rent to pay for, a car to pay for, and other living expenses, the loss of that money not only meant I couldn’t go to school, it also meant that I couldn’t afford to live on my $4.05/hour job as a frozen food/dairy manager at supermarket in the city. I had hard choices to make — go through some VERY tough times for a year with lots of debt and try again the following year; get another job doing work I didn’t want to do, but which would pay for me to be able to live and hope that somehow, I’d be able to get back into school while still working these awful jobs; join the military and at least get into the IT field, hoping that one day, I could swing back into the AI research and development. I chose the latter, but the decision had me in tears too as I knew I was giving up on my dream in the face of reality.

Thus it is with Ruka. Oddly enough, she has a job now that many girls dream of having — being a popular idol with a decent paycheck to boot. Yet her dream is to be a manga-ka, which isn’t going to get her the money that being a very successful idol will. She also dreams of a normal life, being married to Hayate.  That too is something she sees disappearing. It is no wonder that she couldn’t help but cry onstage for a moment because the figurative floor beneath her feet crumbled into dust.  Being the ultimate professional, she turned things around on stage, but alone with Hayate, she allows herself to cry again.

It is a hard thing to accept reality and the responsibilities that come with it. As a character, I respect Ruka for making the hard choice to pay off her debt.  While it is not fair that her parents left it to her, it is also not fair for those who lent out the money in the first place not to get paid back. Ruka is being responsible and mature, so I hope that somehow Hayate can make her happy.   I think that will happen, based on CTMEOY.

The big mystery of this chapter is what Kurosu told Hayate.  What is her relationship with Ruka?  What did she tell Hayate?

Another thing that struck me is how the whole video competition element still hasn’t been woven into the plot of this arc yet. I still wonder if Miki, Risa, and Izumi were nearby filming all of this. I bet they were.

The other thing that struck me is the absence of the other housemates of Yukari-chan House, including Maria.  When Nagi got up, she was apparently the only one there other than Ruka and Hayate in the yard. So, where were the others?

Finally, what happened between the time that Nagi saw Hayate embrace Ruka and the following morning when Hayate asks for time off to do something for Ruka?

In the end, I found this to be a really good chapter, proving that Hayate the Combat Butler doesn’t have to have jokes/gags in every chapter to be enjoyable.

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6 Responses to “Hayate the Combat Butler Manga Chapter 419 (Dreams vs. Responsibilities)”

  1. Anonymous says:

    I’m surprised Nagi is not upset about Hayate embracing Ruka and is being quiet about it.

  2. I suppose it’s not really that unexpected given Hata’s track record. While I agree that Ruka made the more realistic, apparently more responsible choice, I don’t like how misleading chapter 418 was with regards to this chapter. In fact, if this was going to be the main reason for Ruka’s choice all along, then we didn’t really need the entirety of chapter 418 altogether and we could’ve just moved straight to 419 from way back around chapter 415.

    My main problem with this kind of development is that there was no foreshadowing whatsoever and it seems that Hata just wrote it in order to subvert the established tropes/cliches regarding this kind of situation – as I’m sure a lot of us were convinced that Ruka must have had a more profound reason for raising that mic. Ruka’s reason just comes out as “cheap” to me. That’s not a slight on Ruka btw but on Hata as an author.

    I suppose I’m one of the few who expects a certain degree of idealism in manga/anime. I think that although the characters should also act with a sense of realism, that it’s okay to be cliche and have them portray reality as it should rather than how it really is at times.

    I would have personally preferred it if Ruka had admitted that she at least had some love for her career as an idol, but it seems by her own admission here that she doesn’t. It makes her character feel shallow and one-dimensional to me. I just hope that she didn’t really mean what she said and ends up realizing that she really does like being an idol after all at some point in this arc.

    As for Kurosu, she is totally NOT Ruka’s mother since Hata never plays his cards straight. Anyway, looks like he still managed to delay much of the continuation of chapter 413 regarding Nagi’s reaction in this chapter – either that, or being in total shock is her reaction. Next week, we’ll see her on top of a tall building lamenting her life and stuff. 🙂 Y’know what? I think I’ll draw a 4koma like that.

    • AstroNerdBoy says:

      >I don’t like how misleading chapter 418 was with regards to this chapter. In fact, if this was going to be the main reason for Ruka’s choice all along, then we didn’t really need the entirety of chapter 418 altogether and we could’ve just moved straight to 419 from way back around chapter 415.

      I understand why you think that. And certainly, Hata-sensei is fairly slow in moving things forward. That being said, I think two things are at play here

      1) Recapping for new readers. 418 has Ruka touching on the debt from her parents and her new friendships made since meeting Hayate and Nagi.

      2) Setting up the tragedy. Hata-sensei wanted to show how much Ruka really did want to get out of being an idol, something considered a dream job by many girls in Japan. As such, he’s trying to make Ruka’s decision feel more tragic.

      >I suppose I’m one of the few who expects a certain degree of idealism in manga/anime. I think that although the characters should also act with a sense of realism, that it’s okay to be cliche and have them portray reality as it should rather than how it really is at times.

      And idealism is fine. However, in this case, because of CTMEOF being established as canon, we already knew that Hata-sensei was going to have Ruka remain an idol. We just didn’t know the reason. We also know that whatever happens, Ruka remains close to Nagi and Hayate as well as her other former housemates, and that Ruka appears fairly happy now. I think that’s where the idealism will come into play.

      >I would have personally preferred it if Ruka had admitted that she at least had some love for her career as an idol, but it seems by her own admission here that she doesn’t. It makes her character feel shallow and one-dimensional to me. I just hope that she didn’t really mean what she said and ends up realizing that she really does like being an idol after all at some point in this arc.

      I think she will say that in the end, thanks to Hayate making her realize this. At the moment, Ruka’s an emotional wreck. She was forced into this idol thing by her parents. She drove herself because of her parents. Her parents dumped a MASSIVE debt on Ruka and abandoned her, forcing her to continue working because of the debt.

      So to me, I had the complete opposite take on this. I think that at the moment, she is viewing being an idol in a negative fashion because of her parents. She hasn’t really lashed out at her parents, but if she could escape being an idol, then she escapes something she associates with her parents. That would be a way for her to get at her parents, whom she can’t attack any other way since they aren’t around.

      >As for Kurosu, she is totally NOT Ruka’s mother…

      I never thought Kurosu was Ruka’s mother. Ruka’s mother is someone I don’t expect to ever see, much like Hina’s real mother or Hayate’s mother (meaning, seeing their real face).

      I think Kuroso will be an aunt, if she’s a family member at all.

  3. Anonymous says:

    some people said Kurosu might be Ruka’s mother but i don’t think so. She would be her relative and know about huge debt that Ruka has (maybe she knew from Ruka’s parents) and want to give some help. Kurosu asked about Ruka from Hinagiku and realize this Ruka is Suirenji Ruka. Well, Hinagiku would talk about Hayate too.

    Kurosu would want help Ruka but from shadow so she asks Hayate’s help. Because he helped Ruka many times.

    ps. how can Kurosu reach backstage in concert? where’s everyone since there are only three people in that mansion?

    • AstroNerdBoy says:

      >some people said Kurosu might be Ruka’s mother but i don’t think so. She would be her relative and know about huge debt that Ruka has (maybe she knew from Ruka’s parents) and want to give some help.

      Yeah, I agree there. An aunt would be the most likely family member, but she could be a close family friend too.

      >how can Kurosu reach backstage in concert? where’s everyone since there are only three people in that mansion?

      All good questions I hope we get an answer to.

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