School Rumble Volume 21 Manga Review

School Rumble Volume 21 Manga Review

–> Click the link to buy School Rumble Volume 21 from Amazon.com!

Summary/Synopsis (Main Story):

School Rumble Volume 21Eri arranges Yakumo and Harima to find Tenma. They find her, but Harima is crushed when Tenma begs him to let her walk alone with Karasuma, if they find him. Yakumo finds Karasuma, who informs her he is dying. Thus, he has never responded to Tenma’s feelings for him. The depressed Yakumo returns and asks Harima to walk with her.

As they walk, Harima informs Yakumo that he has a manga serial being published next year. Thus he wants her to stay by his side (as his assistant). She attempts to confess her feelings for him, but fails. Akira, Suou, and an annoyed Eri see the couple’s misunderstandings.

The trio walk on, where they eventually spot Tenma and Karasuma together. The school walking becomes a running thing, which prevents Tenma from confessing to Karasuma. However, when she falls, he helps her up. Class 2-C wins the run, but when Eri, Akira, and Suou find Tenma, she’s crying. Yakumo lets Harima know Karasuma has left, so he bikes back to school. There, he finds Karasuma and starts a fight.

Harima cuffs himself to Karasuma and the two duke it out. During their battle, Harima learns Karasuma actually loves Tenma, and he learns Karasuma is dying. Meanwhile, the girls retreat to Tenma’s house to party at Tenma’s request, so she can vent. Harima arrives to “kidnap” her and take her to the airport, where Karasuma is. When they arrive, Tenma has no money, luggage, or passport, so Harima has Youko bring some.

Harima gets Tenma to her plane. He throws away his shades as Tenma flies away. She realizes that Harima loved her.

Thoughts/Review:

I’ve said similar things before, but man, it really does suck that School Rumble Volume 21 will almost certainly never get a print edition, even if it is a bit depressing. So despite room on my bookcase, the Kindle version has to do. 😅

Goodbye Tenma

Kobayashi-sensei starts winding down things in School Rumble Volume 21. And that gets started by Karasuma making sure that Tenma cannot confess to him. When Karasuma and Harima had their fight, I understood why Karasuma felt he needed to not be truthful with Tenma about his illness. However, being honest with her would have been the best option, in my opinion.

Although I felt bad for Harima, he at least finally manned up and gave up on Tenma because he knew she loved Karasuma. However, he fell short in that he didn’t come out and tell her directly, which was a bit frustrating. But he got her to go after Karasuma to America. So it is all touching and stuff. But you can’t think too much about Tenma being in America. 😅

And in the end, although Harima couldn’t confess to Tenma, she did know about his feelings.

What Now?

There’s only one more volume after School Rumble Volume 21 and the series is over, sans for the one volume School Rumble Z. As such, what happens to the story now? There are several romantic threads to resolve. The chief one is the love triangle between Eri, Yakumo, and Harima. Having read School Rumble Z, I know what that series states is the resolution. And based on the outrage back in the day, I’m guessing that things don’t get resolved until that sequel manga.

Nevertheless, I felt bad for Yakumo. She was unable to confess to Harima, and Harima has been too dense to understand Yakumo has feelings for him. Likewise, Harima has not understood Eri has feelings for him. Though to be fair, she did throw him off when he started to suspect she might care for him.

Anyway, I guess I’ll wait to see how the final volume goes. All I know now is that I miss the comedy of the series and feel pretty bummed at the moment from the events that happened in the manga.

Side Stories

I don’t have the tankoubon for School Rumble Volume 21, so I don’t know if Kodansha had a “I don’t give a crap” moment or not. (More on this in a bit.) However, the side stories were at the front of the volume instead of the rear, like normal. That was very strange to me.

Nevertheless, the first side story is kind of a meandering tale, which I suspect may somewhat represent Kobayashi-sensei’s own manga journey. That said, outside of an alternate Harima and alternate Tenma, none of the other cast are present. And frankly, the story of Harimo breaking into the manga biz wasn’t of interest to me.

The second story is a bit more interesting. It was strongly suggested in Volume 10 that the stray cat Yakumo adopted, Iori, can take human form.  As such, the human male is supposed to be Iori and the human female is the white cat that shows up later. And then a “drunk” Tenma scares off the white cat, who was supposedly in love with Iori. So even that was a bit depressing.

Final Thoughts and Conclusion

Let me wrap up with some final thoughts.

  • I get the feeling Kodansha was forced to finish out the series for a digital release. So they just slapped stuff together. For the first example, they have the second side story listed as page 1 in the table of contents.
  • Second, Kodansha has Harima calling Itoko “Cousin” rather than her name. Yes, Itoko means “cousin”, and she is his cousin (hence the joke), but he addresses her by name, not by “cousin”. But then, we don’t have the same translator/adapter we had in the print days.
  • Further on the naming thing, Kodansha changed Iori’s name to IOU. What? That doesn’t even make sense. I’m sure I could find more wrong if I had access to the raw Japanese chapters.

In the end, School Rumble Volume 21 was a somber and somewhat depressing read as things are clearly winding down to an end.

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