Nanbaka is a 2013 gag manga you can and should read for free on the Pocket Comics app with a 2016 anime you can watch for free on Crunchyroll and which I’ve talked about a couple of times already. It’s fine. The character designs are fun, the jokes hit more than they miss, and the mystery surrounding the main character is compelling; but the drama often lands flat and some of the arcs (coughbuildingfivecough) drag on way, way, waaaaaaay too long (more reason to read the manga for free on Pocket Comics and bump it up to the most popular series, thereby incentivizing them to release more than once chapter a week so we don’t have to suffer through a full year of God. Damn. Building. Five). But all that has very little to do with why we’re here today, because it’s Valentine’s Day and Fen didn’t finish a review this month so you all have to sit there while I talk about a cartoon man that I like.
This is probably a good time to mention that I consider ‘waifu’ gender neutral mainly because ‘hasubando’ sounds stupid and is more letters to type. This also isn’t a good time to get into the debate about about the racist and/or sexist undertones of the term. As there isn’t yet an accepted replacement (or even a noteworthy contender) to describe this particular character/audience relationship, it’s the term we’re stuck with for the moment.
But moving on!
REASON 1: MITCHAN IS HOT
Now, some may argue that his teeth are weird, or that that is too many earrings for one ear. Those people are cowards and not welcome on my website. Also everyone in Nanbaka has weird teeth.
Not to presume things about the author based only on their work, but I think Shou Futamata has a biting kink. Which is totally fine, because so do I (though I prefer to be the biter, rather than the bitee. Getting bit hurts and the human mouth is full of icky, yucky germs.)
REASON 2: MITCHAN IS GAY
Now, I usually mean “gay” in the sense of “not straight”, not necessarily as “homosexual,” but Mitsuru has shown zero interest in the fairer sex, so in this case I mean homosexual. But in any case, Mitsuru’s profile lists one of his likes as “Hajime”. The other characters who have a specific person listed as one of their likes have explicit crushes on that person.
REASON 3: MITCHAN IS FRIENDLY AND LIKEABLE
This is another thing that is not unique to Mitsuru, as most of the not-openly-antagonistic-at-that-moment characters in Nanbaka are friendly and likeable, but with only one other exception (Hitoshi, who is new and was already friends with at least one of the inmates before he was hired) the guards generally maintain the appropriate professional distance with both the inmates and their superiors/subordinates. Mitsuru, on the other hand, treats everyone pretty much the same.
Normally that would be a problem, of course- Hitoshi is told off for being too friendly with the inmates for a reason- but Mitsuru’s job is to monitor the security system and give announcements over the PA. That doesn’t involve a lot of direct contact with the inmates, so if he wants to overcharge the warden for a handmade Hajime doll or give Jyugo some good advice, it’s fine.
REASON 4: MITCHAN HAS A GOOD JOB THAT PAYS WELL
Now in real life, a prison guard is Basically A Cop, and as we all know, All Cops Are Bastards, but with- again- only one exception, the prison guards in Nanbaka are cool dudes (at least, the ones at Nanba are), and the one exception only hasn’t been fired because the warden thinks he’s cute. The oldest guard we see is in his mid-thirties, and the rest are in their mid- to late-twenties, which is really young to have an authoritative position in pretty much any career field, and suggests there may have been an overhaul of most of the staff at some point in the not-so-distant past (probably related to the escape of Jyugo’s dad with the squicky eye tattoo) but I’m getting into wild theorizing at this point and it has nothing to do with Mitsuru being Best Boy so I won’t get into it any further. The point I’m trying oh-so-laboriously to get to is that the supervisor of Building 4 used to train police dogs but quit to work at Nanba when he realized that All Cops Are Bastards, so there you go. Mitsuru is provably Not A Cop.
Furthermore, one of Mitsuru’s hobbies is collecting LEGOs (or records, depending on the translation, but Pocket Comics says LEGOs and LEGOs are more fun so I’m going with LEGOs), which is Not Cheap. Granted, he could support his LEGO habit by selling dolls, but there are only so many coworkers whose crushes he can exploit for financial gain.
REASON 5: MITCHAN SUPPORTS THE ARTS
This section was going to be called “MITCHAN MAKES PLUSHIES” but then I double checked and found on that he doesn’t make them- Seitarou does. But he apparently commissions them which is also good.
In conclusion, I have impeccable taste and all y’all with your lesser waifus have shit taste. Happy Valentine’s Day!