Hayate the Combat Butler Manga Chapter 424 (Insert "Rocky" theme music here.)

ハヤテのごとく!/Hayate no Gotoku Chapter 424 Review

SPOILER Summary/Synopsis:

As Chiharu, Maria, and Ah-tan (Alice) observe, Nagi decides she’s going to give up now that she’s accidentally destroyed part of her manga. Her reason is that realistically, with three days, there’s not enough time to do a quality product that would actually sell. Maria moves in to do her usual comforting of Nagi, but Chiharu stops her. Nagi goes on to cite how much better Ruka is than she, and since this is only a doujinshi, there’s no reason for her to push herself any more.

Chiharu cites a racing series where the protagonist doesn’t give up despite overwhelming odds, which catches Nagi’s attention. She then cites a boxing series with a similar situation. Chiharu points out that Nagi’s belief that she would win was based on her being the protagonist, and as such, she must act like a protagonist and do whatever it takes to overcome adversity to triumph. Further, Chiharu strongly reminds Nagi that only Nagi got herself into this situation, so Chiharu demands to know what Nagi can make of herself in this situation if she’s the protagonist.

Nagi considers Chiharu’s words, wondering why she got into this in the first place. She thinks of how she was born into the wealthy Sanzenin family and had been bored for a long time. Thus, her real reason for getting into this doujinshi competition wasn’t to defeat Ruka or keep Hayate, but for herself so she would accomplish something and not simply be born into it.

With that, Nagi finds her resolve and tells Chiharu that she doesn’t need the ruined manuscript, even if some of the pages are fine. She’s going to do it all from scratch, something Chiharu thinks she won’t have time to accomplish. Nagi says she’s going to become a genius manga-ka who sells a trillion copies, and as such, she’ll overcome this problem on her own.

Maria is surprised by this but jumps into help. Maria is saddened that she never comforted Nagi, which Ah-tan notices, mentioning that Maria’s role as mother is no longer required.

Thoughts/Review:

I had figured that Nagi would start over, and that’s what she did here. Of course, I didn’t think it would go quite in the fashion that it did, but this is fine.

While Chiharu’s usage of sports manga/anime metaphors did create the spark within Nagi, I liked how they weren’t what actually the element that caused Nagi’s “engine” to fire up. Nagi went beyond her fears of losing Hayate to Ruka and back to the root of everything just prior to when she met Hayate in that park at the vending machines. I never put a lot of thought into it back then as I considered the manga to be just a gag-comedy title, but I do remember wondering why a girl who was always the target of kidnappings would venture away from a party alone just because she was sick of the smell of tobacco.

Now, it all becomes clear. Nagi has always complained about being bored at various points in the series, so now it makes sense to me why Nagi would do this. Risking her life for a bit back on that snowy, Christmas Eve alleviates the boredom, if only for a time.

Throughout it all though, the only thing that Nagi has consistently done, even if poorly, is continue a dream to be a manga-ka. After Isumi kept her from giving up as a young child, Nagi has tried, even if she got stuck on that hideous Brittany concept. She’s been overconfident at times due to her privileged state, but now that push is coming to shove, she’s returned to the beginning, centered herself, lost the distractions, and she’ll have a finished manga. Doing things for one’s self is the key to any success, thus we have a way for Nagi to succeed and defeat Ruka, something I wasn’t sure would happen.

Another interesting element from this chapter is Maria. We’ve long known that Maria is Nagi’s surrogate mother. How many times did she tell Hayate not to spoil Nagi so much?  Here, she was going to do her own form of spoiling Nagi by comforting her after her inevitable failure, but this time, Nagi pulled herself up with her own two hands. Maria is in an unfamiliar spot and I do feel for her.

That being said, I think Ah-tan is wrong in her assessment that Maria’s role as mother is no longer needed. Whether in success or failure, Maria should be there for Nagi and I’ve no doubt that Nagi will seek her out in either instance.

In the end, another good drama chapter with Nagi making a comeback like Rocky.

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6 Responses to “Hayate the Combat Butler Manga Chapter 424 (Insert "Rocky" theme music here.)”

  1. Anonymous says:

    I get the feeling with this chapter that the Hayate the Combat Butler manga is slowly but surely drawing to its close. Although at times it has seemed to be just a gag manga, I think the author has had an overall plot from the beginning. As you point out, plot points stretching even to the first chapter are coming to their climax and personal relationships are shifting as the characters mature. I wish they would do more with Athena, but I think Athena is right when she says that Maria’s relation with Nagi has changed.

    • AstroNerdBoy says:

      >I get the feeling with this chapter that the Hayate the Combat Butler manga is slowly but surely drawing to its close.

      Well, we are in August in the manga, so there are only four months left, assuming the manga covers a one-year period as expected.

      >Although at times it has seemed to be just a gag manga, I think the author has had an overall plot from the beginning.

      Yeah, Hata-sensei had a plan from the start. It is very difficult to see from the start. I didn’t truly see it until the flashback to Ah-tan.

      >I wish they would do more with Athena…

      I think that will happen next.

  2. Anonymous says:

    How long is Athena going to stay a child.

  3. Interesting insight on Nagi’s boredom. Perhaps Hata has always had a vague idea of where he would eventually want to take this manga, although I’m pretty sure there were plenty of changes made to get this far.

    I’m glad that you mentioned that doing things for one’s self is the key to success in any endeavor since from personal experience, many people actively engaged in certain creative communities tend to forget this and even go as far as to scoff and mock anyone who would promote such a “terrible” idea as doing things for yourself. (end rant.)

    Even with Nagi in high spirits after this chapter though, I doubt that she’ll be able to do enough to actually beat Ruka in terms of comiket sales. I’m guessing that the best that she’ll be able to manage would be a tie or some kind of moral victory via plot twist wherein Ruka accepts defeat despite the actual sales figures.

    Also, since we’re moving straight to comiket next week, I’m going to retract my prediction that Ruka will give up on the competition before it starts. Looks like they’re really going through with it even if she and Nagi were shown happily selling doujin together at comiket in HIAPOE.

    On Alice: I like to analyze this manga using literary deconstruction, so while I agree with you that Alice is wrong that Nagi no longer needs Maria to play the part of her mother, I think Hata-sensei doesn’t believe so and is using Alice as a plot device to directly tell the audience that Nagi has indeed grown up quite a lot in this arc and might really no longer need Maria as a mother — though it’s gonna be a long time before she can live without a maid or a butler.

    • AstroNerdBoy says:

      >Perhaps Hata has always had a vague idea of where he would eventually want to take this manga, although I’m pretty sure there were plenty of changes made to get this far.

      I agree. I know I’ve said this before, but back when I first got into the anime and manga, I had no clue of there being any bigger picture or plot. It wasn’t until the flashback to Ah-tan that I woke up to the actual plot. Since then, I’ve followed things in terms of how Hata-sensei knows where the characters are going, but he just has them on the slow path there.

      >I’m glad that you mentioned that doing things for one’s self is the key to success in any endeavor since from personal experience, many people actively engaged in certain creative communities tend to forget this and even go as far as to scoff and mock anyone who would promote such a “terrible” idea as doing things for yourself.

      I hear ya. Sadly, I have to keep reminding myself of this — don’t do something for any other purpose but for myself.

      >Even with Nagi in high spirits after this chapter though, I doubt that she’ll be able to do enough to actually beat Ruka in terms of comiket sales. I’m guessing that the best that she’ll be able to manage would be a tie or some kind of moral victory via plot twist wherein Ruka accepts defeat despite the actual sales figures.

      And that’s the drama element of this particular arc. We know that Nagi ends back up in the mansion with Hayate as her butler, but we don’t know how she got there. So when folks say, “there’s no drama,” I look at the journey and see the drama there.

      >Also, since we’re moving straight to comiket next week, I’m going to retract my prediction that Ruka will give up on the competition before it starts. Looks like they’re really going through with it even if she and Nagi were shown happily selling doujin together at comiket in HIAPOE.

      Yeah, I didn’t doubt that Ruka would participate. What I’m wondering is how the trip Hayate, Hina, and Kurosu are taking affects Ruka.

      >On Alice…

      Yeah, I hear what you are saying there.

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