Manga Quick Information

Title: Jiu Jiu #1
Original vintage: 2008
Mangaka: Touya Tobina
Published by: Viz Media USA
Genre: Action, Comedy, Drama, Romance, Shojo, Supernatural
Material length: 200 pages

Ian Wolf's review

Ian Wolf scored this with 8/10.

"When novelist Margaret Atwood asked women what they feared most from men, they said: "We're afraid they'll kill us." When men were asked the same question about women, they said: 'We're afraid they’ll laugh at us.'" – Naomi Wolf

Now, given that I like wolves, to the extent that my pen name is "Wolf", and this contains two of them, this should be a manga that would appeal to me straight away.

This story follows a girl called Takamichi Hachioji, who comes from a family of "Dark Hunters" who are paid to hunt down demons. Three years ago her twin brother was killed and now she is the heir of the clan. At the same time she is given two wolf pups to look after.

However, these pups are actually "Jiu Jiu". They are shape-shifters that are half-human, half-animal. They obey four rules under punishment of death: Never to reveal their true identity to anyone else, never to kill a human, never to go out on a full moon, and always to obey their mistress.

However the two pups grow very fast. Fast forward to the present day three years later, and they are now fully grown wolves, which in turn makes them fully grown humans. The duo, consisting of the white wolf Snow (who wears peace-sign earrings) and the black wolf Night (who wears spectacles) are very loyal but are also a source of annoyance for Takamichi. She finds herself having to give them constant walks and playing with Frisbees for them, but she is also falling behind on her exams. Things do not help when Snow and Night decided to become students at her school, making them impossible to shake off.

The best way to describe the storyline would be "tender with moments of tension". Most of the time it is all nice and gentle and Snow and Night try and win Takamichi's love and praise, albeit not entirely successfully. However, then the trio have to end up going out and fighting ghouls and werewolves. There is nothing too violent however.

In terms of more adult content, the rudest it gets is where you frequently see Snow and Night resting in Takamichi's bed. However, because they do not wear clothes in wolf form, when they transfer into human form they end up naked in the bed next to her. You do not see anything graphic, but it is what might be called "reverse fan service".

Although this is more of a drama than a comedy, there are one or two laughs to be found in the book, such as Night trying to find some clothes that suit him (p. 170). Of course, a creature that is usually naked does not usually have any ideas about fashion.

I would say that Jiu Jiu makes a fairly decent start, although one might need to read another volume or two to get a true idea of how the series will develop.

Review Information

Score: 8 out of 10
Review By: Ian Wolf
Date Published: Sat, 14 Jul 2012

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