Years ago, Onani Master Kurosawa – or Masturbation Master Kurosawa – was the hot title that every respectable manga hipster and fiction enthusiast wouldn´t stop preaching about, according to them and the thousands upon thousands of followers of this controversial manga, Onani Master Kurosawa is a masterpiece deserving of every letter of the word.
According to them, Onani Master Kurosawa is an eye-opening, heart gripping tale of growing up, accepting things and moving on.
If you found me a good few years ago, you´d find me with them, chanting about just how real Onani Master Kurosawa is.
Now, exactly three years later, I re-read the manga, and realize that a lot of things have changed, both on my own persona, my views on life and, of course, this manga. Why should my life experience matter? Well…
Y´see, apart from the fact that impressionable tweens are a lot more impressionable than cynical teenagers, I really do believe that life experience changes your views on fiction.
Okay, alright, this is pretty obvious, because while as a kid we all wanted our own Pokemon, nowadays some questionable social justice warriors wonder wheter or not it promotes animal abuse, which, by the way, what the fuck?
Pokemon aside, I think that for Onani Master Kurosawa, it counts even more, because ultimately, it is a coming-of-age story with kids your age. Alright, I don´t know how old you are, reader, but at least, my age.
So, do I think Onani Master Kurosawa is still good? Oh, without a doubt, and it definitely deserves praise, but I just don´t believe it´s the shocking masterpiece it was years ago.
First of all, the beginning – which feels more like a parody to shows like Death Note is a little too cartoony to be considered serious, and while some might find it funny to see a Light Yagami rip-off talk about excecuting justice in the form of jerking off to these sinners, it doesn´t really go with the flow of the middle part and the ending of the manga.
It´s kind of like the mangaka, Ise Katsura, decided to step on emotional grounds about 5 chapters inthe story, who knows, maybe he got an epiphany in the middle of the night.
So, apart from the parody-esque beginning, what about the serious stuff? Ya know, those great moments of self-doubt, self-hatred, trying to fit in, being messed with for not fitting in, not knowing what the hell is wrong with you, even though it´s probably just hormones?
Well, here comes my problem – or more than a problem, a realization, though get your philosophical shirt on, because we´re going ocean deep here;
Is it fair to say that the ones who call this a masterpiece are usually tweens or adults? from my experience, this is definitely the case, and while I can obviously only talk for myself, I think some other people might relate.
When we´re younger, apart from loving the untouchable dark parts of life without really going there, we´re attracted to the taboo, and when that taboo is even sligthy relatable (aka: Kurosawa masturbating to his classmates in often degrading and violent fantasies) we feel like we are part of the darkness, like it´s an enhanced version of ourselves, because while Kurosawa is probably different and more exagerated than your average hormone-pumped tween, Kurosawa doesn´t feel distant, like, oh, I don´t know, Yuki from Mirai Nikki.
So Kurosawa feels real, right? This story is set in highschool, and most 13 year olds look up to that time in both fear and excitement, right? So basically, the taboo, the solo sex and finally, the growing up part of the story mixed together is one big poof where kids are left dazzled.
Now, what´s the problem now that we´re older? Well, we´re Kurosawa´s age, we´ve passed the looking up phase and now we can take a step back and wonder what really was going on in Onani Master Kurosawa.
Onani Master Kurosawa is not a psychological series, the characters mentality aren´t outlandish enough to call it that, and in the end, Kurosawa is just a kid who has made some mistakes (Albeit extreme mistakes) and is now paying for his acts through bullying and ostracization, all while Kitahara just can´t move on from the things done to her.
We all know people like this, right? People that were bullied, people that wanted nothing more than revenge, people who just got along with everyone, bitter people who hated everyone, and that kid who matured from one day to another.
So what, Selena, what is your point? My point is that Onani Master Kurosawa aged from a psychological shocking masterpiece to a light, heart-tugging drama about growing up and accepting shit, ´cause there ain´t nobody who´s gonna do it for you.
It shifted from a otherwordly story that could never happen to you to a relatable story of relationships and stupid, selfish mistakes, which you might face (Kurosawa) or won´t (Kitahara) and while the finale lacks the boom, Onani Master Kurosawa ends it in a way that reminds you that life goes on, and that this ride is a first for everyone, so be kind, accept others, and accept yourself with all the flaws and virtues, because in the end, that´s all that´s guaranteed to stick with you till the bitter end.