Genshiken Second Season Volume 05 (14) Manga Review

げんしけん: 二代目/Genshiken Nidaime
Genshiken Second Season Volume 05
Genshiken Volume 05 (Volume 14 in Japan)

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*SPOILERS!!!*

Genshiken Second Season Volume 05Highlights from this volume start with Saki and Madarame having their private chat, where Madarame confesses in his unique way and Saki turns him down, though this ends up being more emotional than she expected. Madarame is shocked to learn that all of Genshiken knew about his crush as he’s forced to let them know the results. Saki, Ohno, Hato, and Ogiue cosplay as crossdressing boys along with Kousaka. After the festival, Saki makes a prediction on Madarame gaining a harem.

Rika and Yajima mistakenly think they find a naughty item in the club room, causing Yajima to consider marrying Hato with her being the male and him being the female.

Ohno gets permission for Genshiken to do a cosplay photoshoot, where Rika gets her drunk so that she expresses her fears about the future to Tanaka.

Hato and Sue struggle to deal with their growing feelings for Madarame as Sue participates in a spying event, where Hato starts to make a move on Hato until Keiko shows up. Keiko invites Madarame to the hostess club that she works at.


Although I’ve already chapter-blogged everything in this volume, there are things I’d like to discuss.

Rereading through the reunion of Saki and Madarame, I couldn’t help but be touched again as I know this is the pairing that Kio-sensei wanted. I never really saw it working in the original Genshiken, but what do I know. As I mentioned in my review of chapter 80, this pretty much closed the books on the Saki x Madarame pairings.

In more recent times, I’ve begun to question whether this is indeed the case or not. For those of you not current with Genshiken Nidaime, I’ll throw my next remarks in spoiler tags.  For those of you wishing to comment on this section of the review, use spoiler blocks as well.

Saki x Madarame

Saki was used to officially launch the Madarame Harem arc of the manga, which is still going on. My thinking is that Kio-sensei still wants to pair them up. After all, even in <b>Spotted Flower</b>, the !Saki character had an otaku boyfriend before she hooked up with the !Madarame character. However, as of chapters 79-81, Madarame is not there as a character. So, Kio-sensei creates character development for Madarame via the Harem arc. Once the Harem arc concludes, Madarame is in a better position to be with Saki.

Then there are the omake 4-koma strips from Kio-sensei, where I think he uses Ohno to express why he felt Saki and Madarame could be a couple and why Kousaka isn’t the best choice. He then uses Kousaka to express why Madarame now is not a good choice.

The way the Kousaka character is written, if Saki broke up with him because she didn’t like something, he’d be fine with it. Or he might even be the one to push Saki to Madarame, knowing it would make her happy.

Yes, the likelihood of this happening is small, but it wouldn’t surprise me if that’s how things pan out before this manga ends.

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For the rest of the manga, I liked how the Yajima x Hato element was pushed forward from Yajima’s side of things. Also, I liked how Ohno’s relationship with Tanaka was handled. I was disappointed that Sasahara’s and Ogiue’s relationship didn’t get touched much. What little was there had me thinking, “Will they even stay together?”

For the omake chapter, I loved that Madarame, Tanaka, and Kugayama got to hang out and chat about things, even if briefly. I couldn’t help but laugh at Tanaka giving up secrets regarding his love life with Ohno, giving Kugayama “meditation” material. I know, that’s bad of me, but there it is.

On the Kodansha Comics side of things, the standard pluses and minuses are here. While Japanese honorifics are retained, the adaptation still has Keiko address Saki as “Saki-san” rather than “Saki-neesan,” which really is a big difference. There are translator notes here to explain the various parody references, which is always a good thing. There are also ads for other Kodansha Comic manga titles.

This was a very enjoyable volume because it dealt so much with the original Genshiken crew, made more so in rereading these chapters again with their 4-koma comic strip garnishments.

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6 Responses to “Genshiken Second Season Volume 05 (14) Manga Review”

  1. Kinda agree with you on the possible endgame.

    [spoiler] The interesting thing that I find with the Mada Harem arc is that none of the characters actually fit him all that well. In Genshiken up until now the relationships were fairly obvious, Kousaka and Saki, Oguie and Sasahara, Tanaka and Ohno, all of those couples were pretty much laid out quick and easy. And they all fit in their way.

    WIth the Mada Harem though, I think it’s a bit of the subversion of the trope as the what would be the main girl (Saki) is unavailable, and practically a non entity in the story so far, while the other girls are interesting but none quite fit Mada’s personality well. Hato is trans, and Mada is pretty straight, Angela is long distance and barely around, Sue is a cutie but is still relegated to trope status, and Keiko is Saki with looser morals.

    Toe me it just doesn’t feel like Saki x Mada is over yet, but that could just be wishful thinking as Saki is barely around in Nidaime, even though she kinda casts a shadow over the whole Madarame story.

    Again, here’s hoping Kio finds a way to make Spotted Flower a reality. [/spoiler]

    • AstroNerdBoy says:

      Thanks for writing. ^_^

      [spoiler title="More Saki x Madarame"]

      The interesting thing that I find with the Mada Harem arc is that none of the characters actually fit him all that well.

      Yes, that’s it exactly. While I have long been a Sue shipper, things have never panned out to really make her fit with Madarame. Ditto Keiko, Angela, and Hato (for all the reasons you stated). Because of that, and because Kio-sensei appears to be setting up the deconstruction of the harem (we’ll see how the trip to Yajima’s home goes) while at the same time causing Madarame to grow as a character, all that would remain is for Saki and Kousaka to break up, and I can see that happening with few problems.[/spoiler]

      • [spoiler] And that’s kinda the thing, right? For everything that Kio has done to make Genshiken realistic, one of the major things that has yet to happen in the series is a break-up (unless I am forgetting something from 1-9). I mean, I can buy one couple from a club getting together and being together for the long haul, maybe two, but all three? Not a chance in the nine hells. It’s also not like Kio doesn’t handle breakups, hell Yonensei and Gonensei were essentially all about dysfunctional relationships, and all the messiness that comes with them. [/spoiler]

        • AstroNerdBoy says:

          I haven’t read any other titles by Kio-sensei, but…

          [spoiler]sometimes in Genshiken, I wondered if he’d bust up Sasahara and Ogiue. They still have an odd sort of relationship, what little we get to see of it.

          That being said, I’m keeping my eye open for the potential of a Kousaka-Saki breakup, though I suspect if it were to happen, it won’t be for a while.[/spoiler]

          • Yonensei and Gonensei aren’t perfect, but are pretty good reads, just depressing. In a way I can see where Kio went from them to Genshiken, but its still a heck of a change. The both of them are just raw, both in art and in emotion. I wonder if Genshiken was an attempt to do something just plain happy for a change.

            Warning though, if you do give Yonensei and Gonensei a try, they are pretty seinen. Sex abounds, even if it’s not particularly erotic. All of it serves the story, but yeah.

            On a separate note, having now watched the 13 episodes of Nidaime, I begin to understand why there are so many Hato x Mada shippers. The anime ends with an episode that wasn’t taken from the manga, and it is heavily focused on Hato, much like the season as a whole. Hato is the main in the anime in a way that he/she simply is not in the manga.

            As far as Oguie and Sasa, yeah, they feel a bit distant, a couple kinda going through the motions, then again, Kousaka and Saki feel similar to me. With the former I think it’s because Sasa is such a non entity in the series after the switch, hell Tanaka has more importance to the overall plot than he does. With the latter, I think it’s because Kousaka was, and in many ways continues to be a joke character, he hasn’t changed at all from chapter 1, so it is odd seeing Saki, who steals every scene she is in and has developed the most out of all the characters, with the one who hasn’t changed at all.

            On another note, when is the next chapter due to be translated, I guess it’s been out in Japan for a while, but I just caught up a few days ago.

          • AstroNerdBoy says:

            Warning though, if you do give Yonensei and Gonensei a try, they are pretty seinen. Sex abounds, even if it’s not particularly erotic. All of it serves the story, but yeah.

            Thanks for the tip.

            With the latter, I think it’s because Kousaka was, and in many ways continues to be a joke character, he hasn’t changed at all from chapter 1, so it is odd seeing Saki, who steals every scene she is in and has developed the most out of all the characters, with the one who hasn’t changed at all.

            That’s true — Kousaka hasn’t changed at all from his introduction.

            On another note, when is the next chapter due to be translated, I guess it’s been out in Japan for a while, but I just caught up a few days ago.

            That I can’t say because I don’t know. The scanlator keeps their identity secret and sometimes may allow a couple of months or so to pass before putting chapters out.

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