MangaAnalysis: School Rumble #146-147: Harima’s Tenma Hopes Nosedive

I realised something horrible. I screwed up the numbering of the chapters because I accidentally combined #142 and #143. Crap. I’ve made the changes to the previous posts. And here are two more.

#146 – One Hour with You

Tenma, Yakumo and Harima have lunch together. They share some slice-of-life moments and Harima feels like he’s in heaven.

While Harima retires to his room to work on the manga, Tenma chats with Yakumo. She talks about how Yakumo rarely asks for anything so she couldn’t refuse when she so wanted Harima to stay.

Yakumo peeks into the studyroom and sees Harima’s back. She’s reminded of her father. Harima’s having writer’s block and can’t do anything. Yakumo offers to model for him again. She stands still for hours. Yakumo notices the time is pretty late and she has to make dinner, but she doesn’t say anything.

Harima runs out of ink and is set to go out for it but Yakumo volunteers to go. Harima feels bad but Yakumo lies and says she has something on anyway and it’ll be on the way. When she steps out of the house, Yakumo says that it’s winter already and is very cold.

When she returns, she sees Tenma chatting happily with Harima, on frivolous stuff like the priority of the TV remote. Yakumo notices that Harima is very happy. Harima says he’s now filled with enthusiasm. Yakumo just gazes at him silently.

Meanwhile, at the Sawachika house, Nakamura asks Eri if she has made her decision. Eri replies that she cannot do otherwise, for her family is like that. She adds sadly that even if she disappears, no one will care.

Analysis

Harima’s moving into the Tsukamoto household has been uneventful so far. Here, we have a first glimpse into the Tsukamoto family’s background. Their parents have never been talked about before but this hints that they are deceased.

When Harima’s distracted by his desire to help with housework, Yakumo makes him focus and does all the chores herself. Her selflessness is even more apparent when she ignores her dinner duties, which she normally places high importance on, to help Harima. She goes out into the cold and even lies to make him feel better. While I think she has always helped him, this is probably one step further. I don’t recall her ever telling white lies.

This chapter hints that Yakumo’s feelings towards Harima could be slightly due to her father.

But more importantly, when she sees Tenma getting Harima all excited and motivated just through a normal conversation, something Yakumo cannot do, there are signs of jealousy. After all the work she has done for him, she has failed to achieve the results her sister gets from just being around Harima. That is probably what the silent frame of Yakumo represents.

The final scene foreshadows Eri being forced into a choice she doesn’t want, something that’ll probably make her leave the country/school. Eri is in her angsty yet resigned stage, which she sometimes shows when she thinks she cannot do anything about the situation, such as during the play when she thought Yakumo and Harima were happy together.


#147 – Test Pilot

Yakumo notices a flyer advertising a seminar for wannabe manga editors. She attends it and is surprised to see big editor being the speaker. He prompty scares off everyone else so it’s now a 1 on 1 session.

Tenma is giddy with excitement over Yakumo and Harima’s blossoming romance, but she wants to verify if Harima is a good man. She texts all her girl friends asking what kind of qualities a good man has.

Tenma cosplays as Yakumo and bombards Harima with questions. Eri’s message reply states that a good man is one that notices any tiny changes the girl expresses and reacts properly. Tenma asks Harima if there’s anything different about her today. Harima obviously notices that her hair and clothes are different, so Tenma passes him.

Next up is Mikoto’s response. She thinks a guy is good if he’s willing to eat anything she cooks for him. Tenma takes Yakumo’s curry, adds a tonne of chili and gives it to Harima. Harima, under the impression that it’s Tenma’s curry, braces himself for the impact but it tastes pretty good. So Harima passes again.

Karen says a good guy would be one that can protect her in times of danger. Tenma sticks a cockroach onto Izu and screams. Harima doesn’t want to smack Izu so he doesn’t. Tenma fails him, but reads the second part of Karen’s message, which says that a good guy is also one that can solve the problem through non-violence approaches. So Harima passes yet again.

Sagano’s reply is, "Looks are everything." So Tenma takes off Harima’s sunglasses, and he turns out to be pretty ok. Pass.

Finally, Akira says, "Money." Tenma asks to borrow money from Harima, and he comes up with 12 yen. Tenma is defeated, as she has only 5 yen. She proclaims Harima as he perfect guy and is pleased with Yakumo’s choice.

Harima realises that Tenma is still under the impression that he’s dating her sister and resolves to dispel the misunderstanding by going into her room at night and explaining.

At night, he sneaks into what he thinks is Tenma’s room and confesses his love for her. But lying there under the blanket is Izu. Harima realises, to his horror, that it is Yakumo’s bedroom. He turns back and notices a ghostly twin-tailed presence disappearing.

Analysis

First, let’s talk about the manly qualities put forth by the various girls. Eri, being all princess-like, wishes for someone who can understand her completely without her having to show it. This is related to her constantly putting up a façade and hiding her true feelings behind a mask of aloofness. Eri secretly desires someone who can see through that mask and understand her true feelings. Harima of course cannot, but does the more direct approach of actually making her take off that mask.

Mikoto is obviously a lot more simple-minded. She seems to lean more towards family life, since her own family is really bustling and lively. So a good man for her would be a family man.

Karen, despite being imba strong, still wishes for a knight in shining armour. It’s quite representative of many modern women. They can take care of themselves but deep down do wish for a manly man to pamper them. Her skills at violence also leads her to seek the opposite in her lover, which is gentleness. That’s why she’s so attracted to the sissy Imadori who does show gentleness at the right times.

Sagano’s character has not be explored fully but we can tell she’s quite the out-going, fun-loving type that’ll fit right into the High School Girls anime.

Akira’s love for money is apparent. But interestingly, she just says it and doesn’t really show it in her actions. Which leads me to think that it’s again, something she uses as a mask much like Eri. She doesn’t want to say what she looks for in a man, so she just smokes through with a cool and icy quality like money. From her mafia arc, we can tell that she appreciates sincerity and passion a lot.

Tenma of course is an idiot as usual but here she builds Harima up as a great guy and gives him the impression that he is doing well in projecting the right image.

But the final scene is an omen of a bad bad turn in his lovelife.


Even Tripeman is worried for Harima

10 Responses to “MangaAnalysis: School Rumble #146-147: Harima’s Tenma Hopes Nosedive”


  • Tenma = Omega Moron of the Year desu.
    Harima = Ultimate Moron of the Year desu.

    Yakumo = sad.

    I like your analysis of each girls’ reply. Akira is very much like Eri, in that they both hide behind a facade to hide their real personality, though obviously one of them is much better at it. I wonder if that person in the final scene really Tenma? Yakumo sometimes ties her hair up too.

    Dammit I should stop reading your entries or I’ll be going out and buying this very, very soon.

  • Congratulations, you broke my resolve.

    I had stayed away from the SR Manga up till now, but the prospect of Onigiri moments is too alluring. Bet Swampstorm would be happy about this. :P He wanted to debate about Flag vs Onigiri with me.

  • Skane! Flag and Onigiri are out in full force for volume 12. This is one of the best volumes ever. And I can’t believe you haven’t read the manga… it’s awesome. But I hope season 2 does show the whole manga.

  • And then Chap0149 came along and laughed at me.

    Should have seen this coming… Chap0146 was too good to be true… too good to last for long at any rate. Urgh, what a rollercoaster. My heart is breaking and mending at a rapid pace.

    As for manga reading, I prefer animation when it comes to a drawn medium. For actual reading, I prefer text such as novels.

  • Looks like I’ll have to wait to find out what you think about 152. :D

    @Skane: WF is back up at wannabefansubs.info, so you’re welcome to bring your debate over there. ;)

  • OMG NOO!! DAMN! You are so tempting me to read ahead to the weekly chapters. But I shall resist.

    Good to see the site’s up. Those nasty DDOS beasts.

  • Ch.152 is the last chapter for V12. You shouldn’t have to read the weekly chapters to get to it.

    If I had wanted to lure you in, I would have referred instead to the even more impressive ch.154, instead, which isn’t in this volume. ;)

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    exceeeeeeeeeeeeeeEEEEEEEEEEeeeeeeeeeEEEEeeeeeEeEeEelent!!!!!

  • Great article and straight to the point. I don’t know if this is actually the best place to ask but do you guys have any ideea where to employ some professional writers? Thank you :)

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