Manga Monday: Strobe Edge
Story and Art by Io Sakisaka
Article by Mara Wood
Long time, no manga! Thanks to the demands of graduate school and kicking off Talking Shojo, I’ve slacked on bringing you great manga series in this column. My goal is to work back up to a weekly column. One hurdle at a time, right? For now, I want to talk about the manga series Strobe Edge.
Strobe Edge, by Io Sakisaka, is a ten-volume school romance shojo manga. In the first volume, Sakisaka shares why Strobe Edge is so unique and special:
I wrote Strobe Edge because I wanted to craft a story that illuminated some specific emotions that everyone had. I wanted to draw the sensation you feel in the window of time between one event and another. In a single moment, people think about all sorts of things. We may never put them into words or write them down, but we feel the sensation of them flying through our minds.
In execution, Strobe Edge is a slow burn romance story. Ninako is a sweet female student who falls in love with Rin, a male schoolmate who is more or less the mysterious hottie. Rin keeps to himself, which adds to his mysterious air. All of the girls at school, including Ninako, develop crushes on Rin. Ninako, however, recognizes this feeling as something different. This feeling deep in her gut is love.
Upon confession, Ninako learns that Rin already has a girlfriend. Where most girls would give up and move on, Ninako devotes herself to Rin as a close friend. Over the course of the series, the two develop a sweet, loving relationship full of twists, turns, and triangles.
Sakisaka’s approach is what makes this series great. There are no huge drama moments. Rather, the plot deals with the everyday troubles of high school students. Friends, idolizing classmates, social anxiety, and fidelity are all brought up without the added drama found in some manga series. Sakisaka delves into how these occurrences shape how we interpret and interact with others.
Sakisaka’s artwork is a treat. It is crisp, clean, and extremely expressive. I love the way she draws the eyes on the characters; these eyes are wide, as if Ninako and the others are trying to take in everything around them.
Strobe Edge is a complete series, giving readers a defined ending. It is an addictive read that is incredibly satisfying. All ten volumes are available in print and digital from Viz Media.
Similar manga series:
- Ao Haru Ride by Io Sakisaka
- Say I Love You. by Kanae Hazuki