Revisit: Strobe Edge

Well would you guess what was sitting on the library shelf for me to go back to. 

I have no idea how many things this year I will be able to revisit. Number doesn’t matter but the fact made the time to go back to them. Last month for love month I never completed romance anything *shock* unlike me. . . but during last month’s visit to the library what did we find but one of the first shoujo manga I ever read. The name Io Sakisaka might sound familiar to you and one of her popular works Ao Haru Ride. This mangaka for me captures teenage emotions deeply and becomes connective to audiences like how jam on toast melds together splendidly. Ao Haru Ride a school hood ride of complex and intense emotions that carries waves over me after all these years but before I ever dove into that title, one came before: Strobe Edge. 

What The Fudge Is Love?

There is something about reading shoujo titles set in highschool at my age that I’m finding more enjoyment, why is that? Rereading Strobe Edge reminded of the infuriating angst of pent up waiting for the characters to sort out their emotions and intense feelings we experience at a vulnerable time in our lives. Ninako a complete green horn to the emotion of love, falls for popularity figure Ren, confesses and gets rejected already dating Mayuka. The next span of volumes you are following Ninako have a battle to give up Ren or not, put into up close situations having to be next to her unrequited love and trying to figure out what does love bring for us? 

My memory from my first read of this title is in pieces after reading volume one. I felt a gasp escape my mouth of “was I really paying attention over here?”. My little heart was pulled towards Ninako and for her confusion to where these feelings for Ren should go, also in general of if what she is feeling is love for Ren. You never stop through life figuring out of how love is suppose to make us feel towards someone. Ninako dedicated feelings towards Ren seem a no brained, “Girl you have been rejected, move on” but these feelings Ninako develops are the purest. Selfless intent towards the one she loves that overtakes and there is no stopping the train. Ninako trying to stop it herself but how Ren acts and is as a person makes that feel impossible. Ninako presents to us that feeling out every emotion she has gone through because of Ren is a honest process we have to let happen. 

Ninako is a huge overthinker but she is open minded how she takes in that occurs around her. The involvement of Ren’s girlfriend Mayuka at the beginning of the manga seems a rarity among manga today and already at the beginning their is a rejection. I like this non – norm setup for Strobe Edge the hook on towards characters intense emotions stands among other shoujo titles. Ninako being rejected at the start then expected to deal with the impossible aftermath of figuring out what is this love good for she is feeling is a perfect hook on for shoujo readers. 

How Ninako deals with the figuring out heartbreaking yet brave, latching herself onto these glimmer of hope with Ren and moments that have her falling more intensely in love with him. Her pending perspective of love through the course of love really hit me at my core. How we shouldn’t find ourselves caught up in such selfish desires for so called person, Why should we be respectful in certain scenarios and we forget our own hearts. Ninako wanted to hold up the respectful card but that is not how (she learns) feeling intense feelings as she does works in the game of love. 

Respectful In Love Doesn’t Work

The respectfulness each character displays during their own love process is a joke at times because eventually they learn what a tedious emotion to deal with. You want to be good to the other party which Ninako and Ren go through their own phase of this, realise where does this get you in pursuing someone. Ando is someone who likes no strings falls for Ninako unexpectedly. A rival appears and Ando is a persistent bugger, presents his feelings honestly towards Ninako, at times can seem pressuring but Ando knows that giving Ninako time and being respectful won’t get him nowhere in being noticed. Ando is all in or not at the beginning pursuing and I  respect him for this act. Nobody wants to be pressured but for yourself if this was you, do you want to linger on the limbo cloud forever? Sometimes taking that immediate is necessary which slowly all our parties learn and the waiting around, the what ifs just get you goddamn nowhere. My own personal approach is all in and see what happens then I can move on if need be because you spend so long dipping your toes in the water but that’s all you do. 

Strobe Edge was a to the core feels revisit unexpectedly. A shoujo that explores every phase of what is love? Presenting a plot setup I don’t see a lot of and starts things hardcore for the characters and dives solely into the characters intense, confusing loves. This read for the overthinkers when it comes to romance, analyzing the processes of what it means to fall for someone, just to be in love itself or what we think it means to ourselves. This title isn’t all about teenage angst, plenty of heart throbbing moments and shoujo goodness we all seek. 

God I felt many things after revisiting this title, I still have to say Ao Haru Ride is my favourite because I haven’t checked out the authors other titles yet. I have first two volumes of Love Me Love Not from the library so we will see how we go with that. 

See you next post!! 


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