Very romantic, but not safe for work.
I picked up this manga thinking it was going to be your typical high school ecchi. However, to my surprise, it wasn’t.
Meaning “stopping the moment before”, Sundome is about the “give-and-take” relationship between Hideo Aiba and Kurumi Sahana, in which Hideo does random errands for Kurumi Sahana in return for “rewards” (you know what I’m talking about). However, he is not allowed to ejaculate unless given permission by Kurumi, torturing him by teasing him to his limits. Can anyone say, “blue balls?”
Sounds gross, huh? Well, behind the sexual, masochistic-sounding plot, the manga manages to pull off pretty good character development, especially with Hideo Aiba. Hideo is part of a club called the Roman club, which focuses on the supernatural and mystery stories, that Kurumi eventually joins in. There is one catch, members must remain virgins until their graduation to receive financial aid for their future ambitions.
At first, Hideo’s submissiveness and constant jealousy can be depressing, especially to a lot of guys who are generally shy and withdrawn during their high school years, but the fact that Kurumi seems to do the things she does to him out of genuine affection and to shape him into a better person is pretty heartwarming. Some unrevealed aspects, up to what I’ve read, has kept me intrigued to who she really is and why she’s joined the Roman club. At first, Hideo’s “love” for her seems purely sexual, but it’s clear that unlike other guys, he only has eyes for her. Other side characters, such as the “fish-faced” Kattsun, the “cowardly” Tatuya with the leg fetish, the ex-president with his… er, butthole fetish, and the dense Kyouko, are pretty fun to watch when they’re up to their antics with the two main characters. Kyouko and Kattsun, in particular, also had very good character development alongside the main characters, while Tatsuya and the ex-president seem like pure, perverted comic relief.
Being an erotica manga, expect fetishes and “seen, yet unseen” sexual scenes to be abound. Unlike other “ecchi” manga, though, I feel like the comedy adds to the sexual content rather than the sexual content adding to the comedy. Actually, scratch that, they seem to complement each other in various ways that won’t make this story seem “silly” like all of those ridiculous harem/ecchi anime you guys have probably seen, which I think is what makes this manga seem that much better.
Pretty much an unexpected good read like Onani Master Kurosawa, being the sexual tale that it is. Can’t wait to read future chapters.
(P.S. I will buy Yen Press’s translation of the Haruhi novels, as well as NIS’s dub of Toradora and Persona ‑trinity soul-, dood. Fawk yea!)