“Your time has stopped, while mine keeps moving on. Don’t try to help me, he must be so lonely in that darkness, all alone.” – Mizuki
This review contains minimum spoilers unless otherwise indicated.
So I got this from the same bookstore that I got Kamikaze Kaitou Jeanne. It’s really old print and has seen a fair number of reads in its time at the comic rental shop. I thought the ink would be all smudged and stuff, but luckily, it’s mostly readable.
I have severely underestimated how serious and melancholic this manga is. At first glance, it’s a manga about a girl suffering from cancer who has 1 year to live, so she decides to spend the last 12 months of her life pursuing her dream career: being a singer. However, things get… complicated.
Like, this manga has the usual chibi mascots that’s in so many fantasy shoujo manga, and those chibi mascots help the main girl transform into an older teenager, so you’d think this is gonna be fun and lighthearted, but the story is just so heavy I don’t know if I would be able to handle it if I were younger. Even SukaSuka didn’t feel as hopeless as some chapters in this manga. The romance is not really the fulfilling wholesome stuff you’d expect from shoujo. While the romance part is satisfying, a lot of the story is just so damn sad.
Is it good? Yes, I would say it’s an okay manga. While reading the first volume, I thought that I’m going to hate this manga, but my opinion gradually improved. It’s basically about a bunch of people finding their own reasons to live. I’m impressed how the author managed to yank the plot back from depressionland in the span of half a volume.
Mitsuki is pretty cute, and she’s not too hopeful yet not too pessimistic and I like that about her. I think the author forgot Mitsuki has throat cancer unless it’s convenient for the plot lol. I like Takuto a hell lot better Chiaki (from KKJ), at least he’s clear and is willing to do things. Eichi is sort of just there looking beautiful. I love Meroko’s character design, and I feel that she’s got a real interesting internal conflict. I think the true star for me was Izumi. I didn’t like him too much at first, but once I learn his motivations, he’s becoming one of my top fav character.
Overall, I think this manga deserves its spot as one of the lesser known classics. It’s got its own positive message to send and a set of likeable characters, plus the plot has a clear direction. There are some inconsistencies here and there, but overall, quite enjoyable.
***Here comes the spoiler section.***
I find Full Moon o Sagashite’s ending really satisfying, like, to the point where I’m surprised the author wrapped it up so well. It’s a nice, clean, clear ending where everything got tied up. Takuto wakes up (lol turns out he was in a coma all along). Eichi’s scene was heartbreaking, but I’m glad he has no more worries. (This ending reminds me so much of Satoshi from Higurashi no Naku Koro ni lol)
I get that the author wants it to end well, so Mitsuki’s cancer is magically cured and Takuto somehow regains his voice due to godly powers. That’s the part where I went: huh, wait, what? Yeah, it’s a Deus Ex Machina way to resolve a plot point. I don’t want to see Mitsuki dead, I just felt it’s weird that she’s been struggling with throat cancer for the whole series and suddenly she’s cured. (And the doctor even said it already metastasized. Huh.) I’ve had… heck, like every older relative of mine passed away from cancer, not from old age. I don’t connect with Full Moon o Sagashite at all on this cancer aspect. I connect more from her feeling of giving up something to do what she really wants.
Mitsuki is one case where I feel she actually has chemistry with the people that she’s close with. She’s there for her friends just as they were there for her. She’s the cute little sister to Eichi, and the supportive friend to Takuto, and the best gal friends with Meroko. Mitsuki’s scene with Izumi is one of the more memorable ones, because even though I thought they had no chemistry, they connect on a deeper level without any romance associated. It’s sort of rare to see that in shoujo, and it’s refreshing.
Despite the parts where I went ‘huh’, I still think it’s a pretty good manga. I don’t want to nitpick just to ruin my own enjoyment, so there’s that.