Another day, another manga. While the adaptation of this work is currently airing and I have professed my strong liking of the show before, I mean, look at the logo of this site or the 404 page. I am someone who thinks that the original work and the adaptation should stand on its own and there are times where an anime works better than its source. (I’m looking at you Planetes) So let’s see where Interviews With Monster Girls stands.
Interviews with Monster Girls (亜人ちゃんは語りたい) is a story that takes place in an universe where demi-humans, also known as demi, exists alongside humanity. Persecuted, feared, and discriminated in the past, nowadays they have become accepted as members of society. Demis range from Succubus, vampires, yuki-onna and even dullahans trying a normal life just like we do. The focus of this manga follows Tetsuo Takahashi, a high school biology teacher who is greatly interested in demis and the demis in school: A lovely and smart dullahan, a quirky energetic vampire, a serious but humorous yuki-onna and a Succubus that only wants to help and love.
Monster girls are often a trope in manga, but the image of works that feature them are often times deemed as sexual, perverted or simply fanservice. Interview with Monster Girls is not that case. The characteristics that make the girls “demi” are explained seriously and not with a morbid curiosity. Their treats are part of the personality and the manga shows how they have to deal with situations that otherwise will be normal for others. The chemistry between characters is heartwarming, from the first volume we see they care about each other and try to help to make their lives a little bit easier. Hopefully the next volume will feature more about the outside life of the demis or more information about their past. One thing where the manga differs from the adaptation is that the manga includes more side characters such as a school nurse who serves as an example of how different people react to Demis in contrast with Takahashi-sensei who wants to know everything about them not only as demis, but as humans too.
The pace of the manga is faster than the adaptation, with the first volume I think it covered at least five episodes already. I was surprised to discover that there are only four volumes out plus the anthology next month. I’ll reserve my opinion about the show until it finish airing, but the manga as it is, is a good one. If you want a different approach to the Monster Girls genre or a heartwarming story of a teacher helping his students to overcome hurdles with a little twist, the manga is for you. English version is available online and licensed by Kodansha Comics.