Pash September 2019 interviews

Mabu character description ‘The Otters revived him with a machine heart, but because telling Reo about his feelings for him would have caused his heart to explode, he closed the door on his emotions. 

Noboyuki on Reo and Mabu’s naked embrace in ep 9: The time when we were creating ep 9, its not that we didnt have instructions in the scenario, but Mabu’s point of view was only vaguely depicted. As I mentioned earlier, ep 9 is an episode of endurance (lol). This direction was to depict Reo and Mabu’s sense of separation too. I thought it’d be good to show them naked in the moment when Reo embraces Mabu after Mabu bakes him Ningyoyaki. I also thought it’d have nudity because it’s an Ikuhara anime (lol). Showing them naked would serve to directly show Reo’s joy, I thought, but in contrast with Reo who is embracing Mabu tightly, Mabu isn’t hugging him back. Even here these two’s sense of distance is shown. 

Natsuki Kizu – ‘Given’ creator

“I wanted to create a manga which turned on something other than romance. Though the principle feature of BL is romance, I wanted something else outside of that aswell. There’s several reasons I choose the axis to be music. Simply its that I like music, or that my friends were in a band, among other reasons. 

Most BL works are planned to be just 1 volume long, originally this work too was planned to be just 1 vol. It was decided to go to a volume 2 around chapter 4… Then around halfway through vol 2 I thought ‘Let’s extend it to 3 volumes.’ “

Interviewer: Up to now, what scene has had the biggest impression on you? 

The 2nd volume, page 124. 

Interviewer: What BL works have had a big influence on you?

It’s not a BL, but Banana Fish. My father liked it, so it was around the house as a kid. Its one of the formative experiences contributing to my manga. 

Interviewer: What did you focus on the most in creating Given?

I wanted it to have a suitable realistic feel. Because BL itself is very much a fantasy, let’s support it with a realistic foundation. 

Rihito Takarai (Ten Count creator)

“Honestly, I didnt’t think it’d serialise all the way to 6 volumes. Before serialisation the editor said ‘How many many volumes do you want to do?’ and I thought it’d be about 4-5 volumes. 

Interviewer: How did Ten Count come about?

I thought in general terms about what ‘hurdle’ it would be good to have. These days, same-sex romance in BL is ordinary, not-taboo romance. They tend not to depict the struggles of same-sex couples. So to give them an issue other than that to be the principal subject of the work, I thought about several options that would serve as a source of conflict between the two mains. Eventually I gave Shirotani the hurdle of his obsession with cleanliness. 

Interviewer: What do you think the pair’s future will be? 

After they went through so much during serialisation, their future is happy! …. I think. 

Haruko Kumota (Rakugo Shinjuu creator and BL mangaka)

Interviewer: How did this work come about?

I’ve always wanted to do a BL as if ‘Sazae-san’ is looking over the pair. 

Interviewer: The pair’s wedding ceremony in vol 5, is that a development beyond what even you, Sensei, predicted? 

Yes, I was surprised (lol). The scenario that Kubo-kun was gay was actually made there, and I didn’t know when I was writing the ‘Otaru hen’. However, when I read it back later,I understood it.

Interviewer: In this work, Seme and Uke aren’t set in stone, its a reversible couple. What was the intention there?

I thought that I wanted to do a reversible pair. But, reversible has a lot of people who don’t like it.


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