Bakuman II Episode 12: Gag vs Serious


Despite Future Watch ranking higher in the polls than Ten, Miura insists on Ashirogi Muto doing a gag manga, as from past records he realizes that they tend to be more stable than serious stories. After yet another argument, Mashiro agrees with Takagi and Miura to do a gag series, and they look over the boxes of gag manga sent to them by Miura. Meanwhile, Aoki has been instructed by her editor Yamahisa to rewrite her story from a male perspective, but having no dating experience she has no idea what to do. She is then approached by a grown-up Iwase Aiko, who has become a successful writer.


Man, if you thought the conflicts between Miura and Ashirogi Muto were bad before, they reached a whole new level this episode, with Takagi losing it and just walking out with a pissed look on his face. He’s supposed to be the level-headed one too!

What Miura doesn’t know about is Ashirogi Muto’s past – I think he’s affiliating the two with a pair like Nakai and Aoki, who teamed up and split apart easily. For Ashirogi this isn’t an option at all, and Miura really touched a nerve there. Especially since it was Takagi who asked Mashiro to draw for him all that time ago. Miura loves his gag manga for some reason, and I think it’s this love that prevents him from seeing the type of work Ashirogi Muto are really suited to – which is serious stuff. And you can put comedy in serious stuff too, so that’s all well and good. Wit actually boosted Detective Trap‘s ranking for some time, before the hospital incident.

Mashiro doesn’t seem too happy with Ten, and I can see where he’s coming from. With ten hitmen to kill, a storyline like that literally has its days numbered, and eventually, no matter how long its dragged on for, the ten hitmen will end up dead and that’s the end of the story. A lot of gag manga rely on established premises, where things end up going back to normal at the end no matter how crazy things get, meaning that each chapter can almost be a standalone story.

Anyway, it seems that Ashirogi have decided to go with gag, and if they can just hit it off well, they’ll end up with a stable ranking and a long-lasting series, maybe even an anime in the future? Which is what Mashiro’s aiming for in the end (: Leading to marriage, of course.

Also, Iwase Aiko has returned! Yup, that girl rejected by Takagi in favour of manga. Would never have guessed if she wasn’t already in the OP and if I hadn’t read the manga ^^ She still has a grudge against manga it seems, and definitely tried to question Aoki and her values, only to have her say that she loves manga – more or less what Takagi told her. We’ll be seeing more of her for sure, now that she’s made herself known. Oh, and Aoki seems so much more…human these days. You know, more emotion showing and less stoic ice-cube style person. Quite like how Iwase is now.

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