Other Name: Mitsu X Mitsu DROPS
Genre: Comedy? / Romance (sort of) / School Life / Shoujo / Smut (Definitely)
Hagino Yuzuru is the 15 year-old daughter of debt-ridden two-child family. Her parents send her to the exclusive Houjou Academy, a school filled with its share of corruption and secrets. When she has an altercation with Renge Kai, a rich kid from her school that happens to attend a place where she works part-time serving drinks She learns the next day that she is his Honey.
Honeys are students picked out to assist certain upper class students to graduate, with school expenses paid and often other financial perks thrown in for the family of the Honey. One of the rules is that a Honey is expelled if they quit. Renge Kai has a long history of sending his “toys” packing in under a week. How will Yuzuru deal with her perverted and arrogant new “Master”?
Honey X Honey Drops reads like a soap opera, and I kept reading to see if anyone suffer any comeuppance for hideous behavior towards Yuzuru, the subject of much abuse from various cast members. There was some mild character development throughout, but some characters remained the same, continuing the same cycle of behavior throughout. A good example of this is Yurioka Chihaya, a young man with a HUGE bro crush on Renge Kai. He uses threats of rape and actually does sexually assault Yuzuru on numerous occasions in an attempt to make her leave the position of Kai’s Honey.
There are a lot of things about this manga that bug the hell out of me. The story is rife with plenty of situations of dubious consent, sexual assault, threats of rape and incidents of near-rape for the female lead Yuzuru. There is lots of genuine (non-explicit) consensual sex scenes between Kai and Yuzuru in it as well, but there were so many sequences of this nature that they began to act mostly as filler. And in spite of my want to see some of the cast members be punished or at least make amends for their horrid behavior, this never happens to any degree that I am happy with. I really wanted to see Yuzuru do major harm to Chihaya’s genitalia for all of the pain he put her through.
You are probably wondering why I gave this manga a 3 out of 5 rating with all of the mentioned annoyances. My main reason for this is the fact that even though there is a lot of infuriating things about this manga, the story is still oddly addictive. The soap opera qualities made it oddly entertaining at times. I loved to hate certain characters and the bizarre culture that these rich douche-bags live in. I also found some rather surprising moments on the part of some of the supporting cast. e.g. Two side characters somehow managed to bring out items such as rocket launchers and Jokey Smurf style bombs. This seemed like a bit of a lame attempt to add humor initially, but it did offer numerous WTF?!!! moments as well.
If you are looking for a manga with lots of storyline and likable characters, it is probably best to steer clear of this manga. If you are looking for lots of sex scenes and soap opera style bitchy characters, then this is the one for you. If you are looking for a manga with a moral high ground, then it is no good either. However, if you want a story with a long-suffering yet-persevering and loyal (if naive) female lead, you might find it worth taking a look. Would I read it again? Probably not, but I might have had certain characters got some real comeuppance.