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"Undying Flower" one-shot, scanlated by Endless Dimension - Lililicious

About "Undying Flower" one-shot, scanlated by Endless Dimension

Previous Entry "Undying Flower" one-shot, scanlated by Endless Dimension Jan. 12th, 2005 @ 10:01 am Next Entry
Cross-posted from my lj:

I read yesterday on the shoujoai.com forum that Endless Dimension had released a yuri short, so I downloaded it last night. Here are my impressions of it.

Okay, I think I'm only finding the Warning page funny because Lililicious would never have one (people know what they're getting when they download our releases, since everything we do is yuri). Or maybe it's the language they use: "Warning! The following chapter contains light shoujo-ai (girl vs. girl love) contents. Viewer discretion is advised. If you decide to read on, we shall not be held responsible for any possible outcome thereon as we've already given you a choice." First of all, that use of "vs." conjures up some really funny images. Violent hate-sex, anyone? Then there's the "any possible outcome" part that, well, gave me some funny ideas that I mentioned in #lililicious:
"If you decide you hate [male genitalia] (hey, there could be kids reading this lj, this is a pg-rated post ;D) now and want [female genitalia], it's not our fault."
"Warning: you may never want to read anything other than yuri after this..."
"Warning: after this, you will start to look at your girl friends in a new light..."
"Warning: after this, you will realize that the yaoigirls are all really sleeping together..."
Seriously, do they expect mass vomiting or something? Or just sudden sexuality crises? ;) I guess some people just put "homosexual content" (I hate that term, and similar ones like "lesbian relationship," because they marginalize us bisexuals) in the same category as "rape" and "chan" (sexual acts with children under legal age). Hunh.

Okay, on to the manga.

The language is a little funny, and I'm not sure if it's because their translator (and editor?) isn't a native English speaker or if they're trying to convey formal language in some weird sort of way. Either way, it's still very understandable, so don't let that deter you from reading this. :)

It looks like a standard yuri plotline so far--girl has just transferred to an all-girls school and has moved into the dorms. The twist here is that she's here looking for a guy (bet you're not going to see THAT plotline in Yuri Shimai! That's rather unfortunate, actually. I would be happy to see some het/bi stuff mixed in with yuri, especially if it meant some new plotlines). The guy was her teacher at her old school and transferred to the new one, and was the only person she had gotten close to or something.

She suddenly walks in on two girls kissing, one of whom is dressed like a guy. It's funny, because she turns red and thinks "So this sort of thing really does happen at girls' schools!" [my paraphrase of the translation] She then finds out that the masculine girl, Ibuki, is going to be her roommate. Typical plot point... blech. Oh, well.

She has yet to see the teacher that she transferred to the new school for, because she isn't in his class, students aren't allowed in the staff room, and she has to be in the dorm by a certain time each night. Aww. She worries that he's deliberately avoiding her, but who knows if he even knows she transferred there?

As expected, Ibuki (the roommate) persistantly tries to spend time with her even though she (the main character)'s cold to everyone, including Ibuki. We also find out that the main character has an unhappy home life (her parents are both seeing people on the side), which I suppose is supposed to at least partially account for her cold demeanor.

When she asks Ibuki why she cares so much about her, Ibuki tells her a ghost story about a botched double suicide between two lovers who lived in the dorm--the typical story about one of them being forced to marry a man and wanting to die with her lover instead.

Hmm. I thought the translator's use of "bastard" (oops, did the rating of this post just go up to pg-13? Sorry, kids!) as an insult for Ibuki was odd until the girls in #lili assured me that they use it for both genders. I guess that' just me being out of the loop again, although they claim that they are, in their own words, "foul-mouthed perverts." They were also mainly Aussies (the ones around when I asked), so who knows.

Ibuki has figured out that Yuuki (the main character) is there to see her old teacher, so she goes to see him on her behalf. It turns out that he did know about her transferring there. She overhears the conversation because someone asked her to bring some sheet music to the staff music room (well, they call it "staff music room," but I'm guessing it's the office for the music teachers), a situation which Ibuki contrived. It turns out that the teacher was deliberately avoiding her because he felt it was best for her, since if she was with him, she wouldn't be interacting enough with the outside world.

We find out that Ibuki had a female lover/girlfriend before--Yuuki will be wearing her old dress to the prom (no idea why Ibuki has her lover's old dress... maybe they'll explain later? My theory is that she did a botched double suicide with her lover, like in the story).

Ibuki, Yuuki, and the teacher all hang out together one day. There's a cute scene where Ibuki remaks to the teacher that Yuuki has a cute smile. :D Later, the teacher accidentally leaves behind an envelope with pictures of omiai candidates (potential marriage partners), and this makes Yuuki cry. Ibuki is angry that Yuuki is crying alone and comforts her. Aww.

Spoiler: Ibuki really is a ghost from the story she told Yuuki. She disappears after Yuuki figures it out and asks her about it (after kissing her goodbye, however ;D). At the very end, it looks like Yuuki is going to have a chance with her teacher--he turned down all the omiai candidates. She also looks to be making a new friend, a girl who she lent shoes to for the prom.

I liked this overall, even the ending, although I think other yuri fans will be disappointed by the ending (hopefully that's not giving too much away!). There were also a couple kisses between girls, rather than just subtext, which was nice. The one thing that irked me the most was Ibuki's declaration that she liked Yuuki because of how passionate Yuuki was about her teacher. I suppose that fits with her character, but it just didn't sit right with me for some reason.

I hope this synopsis/review was enjoyable and/or helpful. Would people like to read these for other stuff, like Lililicious projects or other yuri? And should I crosspost this to yuri and/or yuri_manga (and is there an easier way to crosspost than copying and pasting into multiple entries?)?
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Date:January 12th, 2005 03:41 pm (UTC)
I read this one too, and left a comment on their page and in their channel, hoping to cancel out the badness of a comment left previously, stating something like they love the mangaka, but would never ever read it because of the content, so would ED please never do that again.
Which is definitely not the kind of feedback ED should be getting, especially if the yuri community can ever hope to have other, various groups pick up shoujo ai projects. So yes! Leave good feedback in their tagboards, people! Let them know the community appreciates it!
Thanks for the review, bytheway. I definitely liked this oneshot more than most -because- of its straight relationship- too many times, people slip into one genre/orientation, and suddenly all characters are forced into it, or if they don't, and turn out straight, then they're the ones that seem different and weird. I liked Undying Flower for showing the two orientations coexisting peacefully (well, minus the backstory), and not casting Ibuki as the Evil Raging Lesbian Back For Revenge who steals Yuuki's first kiss, or some nonsense. Yuuki doesn't seem to have any regrets about it being with Ibuki, which is a really nice change from "EWW GROSS."
Anyways, yes, the review was a good read! I'd love to see more.
[User Picture Icon]
Date:January 12th, 2005 04:39 pm (UTC)
*spits out a mouthful of water* XD You should really put those warnings on the Lililicious releases now. And yeah, the girl vs girl was worded a bit oddly.

I didn't really care for this story. I mean, it was alright but nothing that really made me stand up and take notice. Then again, [Spoilers] I didn't really like Yuuki's relationship with the teacher and I was sad when Ibuki disappeared at the end. Meh.

It wasn't bad just not my taste.
[User Picture Icon]
Date:January 12th, 2005 05:15 pm (UTC)
First of all, those warnings are simply ridiculous. The use of "vs." does indeed make for silly mental pictures. And, really, people were cautioned as though sexuality was a choice; they shouldn't be afraid of being held responsible for 'converting' anyone because if anything, said person who realized they were attracted to the same gender should give thanks for the help. Seriously.

On a personal note: while I don't mind the term 'homosexual', 'gay' or 'queer', I do object to 'lesbian', 'lesbo', 'dyke' and any and all crude terms. Yuri and shoujo-ai, however, strike me as decent enough terms. Which makes me wonder, do bisexuals have their own labels?

The plot, regarding a girl going to an all girls school reminded me of Cream Lemon Escalation. I take it that's common ground in yuri stories. I suppose it is refreshing to have a touch of heterosexuality and bisexuality, given that the focus is on yuri.

Ah, the classic walk-in scenario- always entertaining when it involves women. More a classic than a cliche, but I say that because I still find it enjoyable and not (that) cheap (yet).

The story seems all right, but this obsession of Yuuki with her teacher just doesn't sit well with me. And, yes, Ibuki liking Yuuki was so very predictable; a tad disturbing, too, if my distaste for being a little too fond of teachers is taken into account- I mean, for God's sake, the girl is stalking him.

I'm not sure, but the tone of review discourages me from reading it. Well, partly anyway. I will read it, yes, but only for the sake of reading something yuri in nature; in other words, if it wasn't yuri, I wouldn't even look at it.

I found this review to be very helpful, worth a read, indeed. And, reviews for Lililicious projects and other yuri material? Hmm, interesting.
[User Picture Icon]
Date:January 13th, 2005 05:04 am (UTC)
off topic, but can i ask why you find the term lesbian to be objectable? it doesn't seem at all crude to me, and as all the other terms you listed are gender neutral or typically male-oriented, it just strikes me as odd- you'd have to say "female homosexuals," or something akin to that, if you're talking to anyone who doesn't know the term yuri (a vast majority of people).
not trying to offend you or anything, just curious. ^^;
[User Picture Icon]
Date:January 13th, 2005 05:17 am (UTC)
I do prefer the neutral ones and yes, I know they're typically male-oriented and oddly enough I'm more comfortable with it. I won't speak for the entirety but around here, the gay male population is more accepted by society, where as the females are seriously frowned upon.

Aye, that's a catholic society for you. Plus, when usually addressed with 'lesbo' or 'dyke', it's usually coupled with a dirty or disgusted implication and that just irks me.

I would actually say 'gay women' to those who don't know yuri, haha. And no, no offense taken ^_^
[User Picture Icon]
Date:January 13th, 2005 05:33 am (UTC)
Thanks for your explanation, I can see where you're coming from- and yes, I definitely agree about not being able to stand "lesbo," or "dyke," they just seem to be the equivalent of faggot, and are definitely derogatory. Lesbian has just been around for so long in history that I guess it just seems to be the correct technical term in my mind.
And I guess I can see how gay males are more accepted by society... two women together tend not to be taken seriously, and are just seen as a sex symbol. In my experience, though, gay men are more frowned upon, because it's more of a "no going back" type thing in most people's eyes, whereas the women may have flings, but could still discover the absolute incredibleness of penises. Or something equally absurd. Ah well, whichever way it is, it's not a good mindset.
Sigh. We'll see where we end up in fifty years. ^^;
[User Picture Icon]
Date:January 13th, 2005 05:47 am (UTC)
Absurd, indeed.

I never really thought of sexuality as a choice; some people are sexually adventurous, but sexuality shouldn't be based on just that. Also, I think the bias opinions you mentioned apply to the entire gay population and, yes, I agree- not a good mindset at all.

Fifty years? Oh, my.
[User Picture Icon]
Date:January 29th, 2006 09:43 pm (UTC)

Violent hate sex

AHAHAHA I wrote a light outline for a joke porno I'd make if I was rich that was something liek that.
Instead of fight scenes, there's be angry sex scenes...

I'm still totally making it one day.
[User Picture Icon]
Date:January 30th, 2006 08:44 pm (UTC)

Re: Violent hate sex

That would certainly be a different sort of porno. lol
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