Manga-ka: Miki Araya
Rating: Teen (16+)
Released: March 2006
Synopsis: “Moriya is in charge of finding a model for a new product commercial for a big jewelry brand; but, nobody matches the ideal of perfection he has in mind… That is, until he meets Itsuki Ouno. Itsuki is not just perfection incarnate, he’s like royalty, and incredibly spoiled. And he may well be the one person destiny put in Moriya’s way to fulfill his need to adore and serve.”
I’ll Be Your Slave follows Moriya on his quest to find the perfect model for his company’s upcoming project. After hundreds of unsuccessful candidates are tossed aside, he worries he’ll never find the perfect face. Then Moriya sees Ouno, the attractive and dangerously aloof student, and immediately knows he’s found what he was looking for.
First and foremost, to be enjoyed, I’ll Be Your Slave must be looked at as a comedy, which will not be difficult to do once the reader begins turning the pages. Everyone, with the exception of Ouno, overreacts to everything. The entire tone of the book is charged with the high energy of a fast-paced comedic skit. Moriya’s obsessive behavior towards Ouno is weird and over-the-top, his enthusiasm challenged only by his rival Miyahigashi’s attempts to beat him at something for once.
Ouno is an amusing character in his own right, purely because he’s much more a prop than a character. He only has a few speaking lines and does little more than sit there, look bored with life and allow people to serve him. It’s hard for readers to even hold it against him since he never asks for any of it; he just sits back and accepts the lavish attention that everyone feels the need to bestow upon him. Unfortunately, his complete lack of personality makes this DMP-proclaimed romance yaoi, completely devoid of said romance. While Moriya couldn’t possibly obsess over Ouno any further, Ouno’s loving is practically non-existent.
The art in this book suits the story. The majority of the cast have masculine, business-suit clad designs that act in sharp contrast to Ouno’s feminine features and thin physique, making him stand out as the supreme beauty he’s supposed to be. The characters go through almost every exaggerated, dramatic facial expression imaginable, not to mention a variety of hip swiveling turns and poses for added humorous effect that really don’t suit grown men.
As a romance, I’ll Be Your Slave fails completely. Even the short stories at the end lack any real emotion. As a comedy, however, it is pretty enjoyable. The characters have no depth, but they don’t really need it in this lively, and enthusiastic-over-its-own-humor yaoi that relies on the character’s energy and silliness to make it entertaining. A shallow but fun read.