Have you ever started reading something, something so captivating that you were unable to put it down until you were finished? If you have then you are among the very fortunate. Those that are blessed to explore the boundless literary arts. Over the past two days I counted myself among the lucky, among the elite. I prided myself on the fact that I was reading an amazing romantic love story that transcended the boundaries of age and societal confines, alas I may have been wrong. All those missed meals, canceled appointments, all for nothing but a lackluster tale, or am I being too critical?
It’s still fresh in my mind
I just finished reading the manhwa, unbalanced X unbalanced. It is the story of a 19 year old young man who follows in love with his teacher who is about 6 years older than him. The two characters first meet not as teacher and student, but as strangers. She while out, somehow loses her wallet which he comes across it and returns it to her, however he returns it short of it original content. She being a bold person confronts him immediately about the missing money, which he explains he used to buy a book he wanted. She insists that he pay it back no matter if it was a small amount and gives him her information so that he may do so later. It is explained very early in the story that the main female has no trust in men because of her father abandoning her at a young age. This has led to her not having any romantic relationships with anyone at the point in which we meet her in the story. She is portrayed as a proud, independent, educated young woman who is not afraid to speak her mind. This changes over the course of the story, and I’m not sure if it was for the better. Her love interest however does not seem to change as the plot progresses. He comes off as an arrogant, spoiled brat that forces his ideals onto others. Even though he is displayed as a character that defends those weaker than him, that aspect of his personality is out shadowed by his delinquent side, and as it so happens this is one of the aspects of this story that I did not like.
The Young man named Jin-Ho Myung, is what you’d call you typical harem protagonist. He is an average guy with less than average traits that somehow captivates the interest of numerous magnificent females. It is what I like to call fantasy. Its not necessarily what we would expect to happen in real life, but it is what we want to read about in our fantasies. However in most of these kinds of stories the protagonist is likable or at the very least relatable. Jin-Ho is neither. He annoyed me, and even though at times while reading I found myself supporting his pursuit of a relationship with his teacher I more often than not found myself totally annoyed by him and his arrogance.
Other than the two main characters the rest of the supporting cast were also annoying, all except for one. His name Young-gi. He is the best friend of the spoiled protagonist and he serves as the kind of character that I’d expect to be the lead of this kind of story, the kind of that I would proudly support without second thoughts. Sadly he is not explored much during the plot and his romantic affairs are not addressed properly before the manhwa is completed in chapter 82.
With all the annoying characters this story had it was nice to have such amazing art to look at. In Fact i’m quite sure that I’d not have completed reading this one if the art was not so good as it was. The Ecchi was well handled, with not too much but just enough to tease the senses. The characters and the setting also were all well illustrated in a neat, detailed style that I really liked a lot. So if anything gets you to read this manhwa it will be the visuals not the actual story. It is however Korean manhwa so be prepare to read from left to right, and as I always say “It takes a bit of getting use too if you’re accustomed to reading manga but after a few chapters you should have the hang of it”.
So what did I think about it by the end?
Unbalanced X Unbalanced Is what I’d call a seesaw kind of ride. It has a lot of potential and is highly captivating, but by chapter 79 you may start questioning why the Frak you started reading this in the first place. That being said, It should be noted that my statement does not mean that this is a bad manhwa, however those that are considering reading this one should be very cautious not to get too invested in the characters as they tend to flip the proverbial switch on you in an instance to make you despise them. If you can deal with that for 82 chapters then don’t see why you shouldn’t give it a read.
if you’d like to hear more of my thoughts on this topic, then I suggest you listen to the Buttonsmashers podcast.