Manic Manga: Coin Laundry no Onna

Coin Laundry no Onna

Coin Laundry no Onna

Title: Coin Laundry no Onna
Alternate Titles: コインランドリーの女, 洗衣店里的女人, Coin Laundry Woman, The Laundromat Woman
Author & Artist: Kiyohara Hiro
Year: 2005
Genre: Comedy, Slice of Life, Supernatural
Volumes: 01 (Complete)
Rating: ★★☆☆☆

Description:
Some random gag stories happening around a woman living inside the washer in the coin laundry. Why does she like to live there? All information come from Manga Updates. This blog post will contain spoilers please read after the cut if you’ve already read the manga.

I thought I’d try another oneshot. This one, I found randomly while browsing The Glorio Blog‘s tag for their random manga spotlights.

I figured with only 19 chapters, it should be a pretty easy read. I also really like gag comics (I can read the Azumanga Daioh comic over and over and still laughing at it) so I figured I could I would get a few chuckles here and there.

Boy, was I wrong. Well, that’s slightly exaggerating. There were moments in the manga where Maoko-san (the girl on the cover) would display otaku behavior (mostly building Gundams and figurines) and the chapter where Glasses-kun and Maoko-san play a demo game with Haru reacting towards everything; but other than that, it’s bland.

There’s a female character named Haru Tanaka – she’s a college student who’s living on her own. However, she holds a secret; she’s her sempai’s stalker. She even went as far as breaking into his place and stole his glasses.

And then there’s her sempai, who actually rarely appears in the manga. There’s a man who lives in wall, a Do-M type whose name literally means “Yakuza boss”, and his son  – Oji, who is Haru’s stalker.

There’s a strange looking dog that constantly fights with Maoko-san but that’s about it. There are other random characters here and there but this is mostly about Maoko-san and Haru and their silly adventures.

Of course, as far as gag comics go, this is one that’s really boring. Maoko-san is entertaining so at least it’s not a complete borefest. The first two chapters were pretty good at introducing both Haru and, well, Glasses-kun. I can’t really remember his name but it’s really not even worth bothering to remember.

To be honest, I’m not sure why Haru keeps going back to Maoko-san other than “plot” convenience (the usual laundromat is closed down because of renovations but Haru doesn’t even do laundry anyway except a few mentions here and there). And yes, I’m using the term plot very, very loosely.

The genre says it has supernatural elements and, I guess? There are certainly things that can’t be explained – especially why the hell is Maoko-san living in the washing machines and dryers? Even for a gag comic, it’s kind of … contrived. I shouldn’t put too much thought in this only because it really is just take everything in literal face value. There are moments where it’s like, “Whoa”, but it gets ruined anyway with its consistently poor punchlines or just the general unfunnyness to me.

Slice of life? What slice of life? There are nice moments between Haru and Maoko-san (especially during the Christmas segment where the two just hang out with each other on Christmas Eve).

Comedy in the manga is very debatable. As I mentioned before, there’s a few “heh” moments. Basically, moments where you just let out a small noise; it doesn’t really have to be “heh” exactly but it’s just an acknowledgment that it got something out of you besides just silence.

I feel I would like it more if they kept Haru, you know, not a stalker. If she was a normal, regular person, then I can see how her reactions could be funny (I actually kind of like that humor anyway); but I feel like as a stalker, she really shouldn’t be commenting about how strange Maoko-san or, really, anyone is when she’s constantly stalking her sempai. Not even Oji could save this manga and he was an annoying little shit. There was no reason for him to exist, really. I get the joke is that his dad is named “Yakuza boss” and his means “prince”. Eh, I guess it would have been better if there was a better way to tell this joke or present it.

If there’s anything I did like about this manga, if at all, is the art. I really love this kind of style! If Kiyohara had recruited a writer for this, I actually can see this as being a legitimate series about a woman living in a laundromat with supernatural beings existing. I’m assuming he was just like “fuck it” and drew this for a quick buck. I actually do hope I can come across some manga from him again, only with an actual story and not as try-hard.

That really is the ultimate problem with this manga. It tries so hard to be funny, edgy, or whatever that it either does it way too much or it’s just barely there. I zoomed through most of the chapters because I was honestly trying to figure out what was going on but just decided to give up on it; it wouldn’t have mattered anyway. These are only 19 chapters with 19 short stories about a strange group of people and a lady scaring the shit out of people in the laundromat she lives in.

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