The Girl That Can’t Get a Girlfriend Review – An Endearing Slice-of-Life

    Title: The Girl That Can’t Get A Girlfriend
    Author: Mieri Hiranishi
    Release Date: February 14, 2023
    Publisher: VIZ Media

The Girl That Can’t Get a Girlfriend was initially published on the Internet. It is the first manga of Mieri Hiranishi, a Japanese author who’s been living in the United States for multiple years now. The author wrote and drew the manga while still having a full-time job which is very impressive. As the title implies, the manga is autobiographical and based on the mangaka’s love life.

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The main protagonist Mieri couldn’t get a girlfriend until she was in college. She’s butch presenting, meaning that she has a somewhat androgynous appearance, and also like butch women but from her experience butch and butch pairings are rare. She noticed that butch women usually prefer more feminine-looking women.

At some point in her life, she tried to change her appearance to appeal to a woman she had a crush on. However, she soon realized that it was a bad idea because it didn’t work and because she shouldn’t try to change her appearance or personality only to appeal to someone else.

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A bit later, she went back to Japan and started trying dating apps. After some time, she finally found a woman called Ash, who was her perfect type and also interested in her. They talked for a bit and agreed to go on a date.

It worked out for the first time for Mieri, and they started dating. They dated for about one month when Mieri had to return to the United States to finish her degree. At first, Ash agreed to have a long-distance relationship for a short period, but she changed her mind when she discovered that Mieri wouldn’t finish her degree in the summer as she thought.

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Saying that she had tried long-distance relationships before and that they didn’t work out, Ash broke up with Mieri. This breakup was really hard for Mieri. She was in denial and tried everything she could to return to Japan as quickly as possible. However, by the time she was back, her ex already had a new girlfriend.

After this defeat, she tried another approach by going on dates with men. She still preferred women but felt like she couldn’t date another woman again because they’ll eventually remind her of Ash. But all of the dates she had with men didn’t work out. She spent years not really knowing what to do and how to forget her ex.

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However, at the end of the manga, things take a turn for the best. Mieri realized that she should spend more time focusing and caring for herself. After doing that, her self-confidence improved significantly, and she finally got over Ash.

Since the beginning of the manga is full of funny situations, it was a bit of a surprise when things started to become more serious. However, the manga constantly switches between funny and more serious situations.

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This is something that is accentuated by the drawing style. As showcased on the cover, the author can draw realistic and attractive characters, but she’s also good at drawing simpler and funnier-looking ones. The author is great at switching between the two drawing styles to make the readers feel what she wants them to feel.

The drawing style and the way the story was told were excellent, especially for a first manga. The final message that focusing and taking care of yourself is essential was powerful and positive. Of course, it will not entirely replace a relationship, but as the saying goes, you must love yourself before you can love someone else.

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The Girl That Can’t Get a Girlfriend was an entertaining autobiographical manga. I recommend it to slice-of-life fans. I don’t know if the author plans on writing a sequel, but I would love to read one to follow the evolution of her love life and her development as a manga author.


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