This is a little belated review of Mermaid Boys Vol.2 by Yomi Sarachi, been a bit busy lately haha. You’d think that after reviewing the first volume I wouldn’t feel the need to review the second volume because I might have the same opinion but this volume has changed a bit of my opinion on it…
Anyway, I’ll be addressing some spoilers for Volume 2 in this post so if you plan on reading it yourself and don’t want to be spoiled then don’t read the rest of this review. All I can say is that I don’t see this series going far, even if it pains me to say it. Sorry if I’m being a wet blanket, its just that I didn’t feel it in this volume… It still made me laugh but whenever I think about what it’ll provide in the next volumes I start to think that it might not last long before the conclusion.
Bunny Gripes about Volume 2
So this is the part where I gripe about some plot decisions in volume 2 that didn’t sink well with me. The prime focus of this volume is the new guy named “Loa Barneys” (the guy on the front cover of this volume) and him meddling between Naru and Nami. So instead of a love triangle between Naru, Nami and Arashi (Nami’s childhood friend), now there is a third dude trying to get Nami’s heart–don’t worry, this stuff is gonna happen a lot.
It would’ve been nice if it wasn’t revealed in the end of the first volume that Loa is working for the bad guy 😆 So you know he’s up to shit but our protagonist Naru doesn’t know, but he does find out Loa is a mermaid but Loa still pretends he’s just here for Nami’s heart. Again, this would’ve been more convincing if we didn’t know he’s part of the bad guys and would’ve played as a better reveal when he did turn heel and reveal he’s part of the bad guys and just wanted Naru to become foam if Nami fell in love with Loa. Loa does the ‘oh im a bad guy’ thing by forcing himself on Nami after she rejected him and Naru comes to the rescue by beating his shit up. After all of this Loa has the audacity to say “Ok this time I’ll let my lose slide, but I won’t give up”, like binch, Nami won’t fall for you after all this, how are you supposed to get him to turn to sea foam. It also makes me wonder if Loa doesn’t get Naru to turn into sea foam, would that mean that Loa would become sea foam for not accomplishing his wish? Then again I’m not even sure what his wish is… still, it’ll be a waste of a mermaid ikemen if he did turn into sea foam in the end.
Anyway this subplot takes about most of the volume but we’re not done yet.
Throughout this volume it seems like Naru and Nami are on the cusps of realizing that they like each other, but we’ve gotta put in more obstacles so that they don’t realise sooner so now there’s another character trying to get between Naru and Nami: Naru’s ex-mermaid fiancee Moana (no, not the 2016 Disney film Moana). She finds out that the bad guy is impersonating Naru while he is gone to the human world and he tries to manipulate her to get Naru back by going to the surface world in exchange of her bewbs (yes, she gave up her huge chest pillows to become a human). To make things worse, her wish is to marry Naru so that won’t go well because if Naru refuses to marry her then she will turn to sea foam and as much as she was a random character added into the story, I really don’t want to see her become sea foam so this is going to either go south really badly or it’s gonna go somewhere. Tho its kinda weird how she regains her boobs when she goes into sea water and transforms back into a mermaid.
So that’s the twist at the end of this volume that will make you wonder how the hell is this gonna be resolved 😆 I guess I can keep reading on to see whether or not my doubts are true, whether they’ll keep prolonging the moment Nami and Naru confess their feelings for maybe two or three more volumes (let’s be honest, that would be likely considering other shoujo manga do the same thing once you realize they like each other subconsciously but won’t admit it/realize it). Tbh, I lose all investment when I see that they like each other but won’t realise it so then you’ve gotta keep reading until they finally confess, especially when it happens really early on in the series so then its like… What’s the point. The same thing could be said for every romance story, it’s always a big farce until finally in the end they confess their feelings but I guess it’s best for the reader to not realize that early on in the story so then it’ll make them wonder “Do they really like each other?” until the very end.
That’s just how I feel about it so far. I hope it doesn’t dampen other’s feelings about this manga, who knows maybe there’s a way to resolve it where everyone can be happy. Like, what are they gonna do with the childhood friend subplot with Arashi? I mean, he’s really crushing on Nami but she doesn’t know but he’s never given enough screen time. The preview of the next volume sees like Arashi and Moana trying to form an alliance to get Nami and Naru away from each other lol So that might be interesting. Either way it may be interesting if Yomi Sarachi can pull it off and keep it interesting (please no more love rivals I beg of you).
Anyway enjoy this panel from Volume 2 with no context: