Pranks, jokes, and general hijinks are all in store for a good April Fool’s Day! They’re also an essential part of any good romantic or action-adventure comedy. So, if you’re not in the mood to try your best friend’s "totally-not-filled-with-toothpaste Oreos,” then spend your April Fool’s Day checking out my top comedy manga and anime!
Kimi ni Todoke = From Me to You story & art by Karuho Shiina; [translation, Tomo Kimura]
Sawako Kuronuma is the perfect heroine...for a horror movie. With striking similarities to a haunting movie character—jet-black hair, sinister smile and silent demeanor—she's mistakenly called Sadako by those around her. But behind her scary façade is a very misunderstood teenager. Too shy to fit in, all she wants to do is make some friends. But when the most popular boy in class befriends her, she's sure to make more than just that—she's about to make some enemies too!
My Little Monster by Robico; [lettering, Kiyoko Shiromasa & Mugwump design ; translator, Joshua Weeks].
Haru Yoshida is feared as an unstable and violent "monster." Shizuku Mizutani is a grade-obsessed student with no friends. Fate brings these two together to form the most unlikely pair. Haru firmly believes he's in love with Shizuku and she firmly believes he's insane.
Ouran High School Host Club by Bisco Hatori
One day, Haruhi Fujioka, a scholarship student at exclusive Ouran High School, breaks an $80,000 vase that belongs to the "Host Club," a mysterious school club consisting of six super-rich (and gorgeous) guys. To pay back the damages, she is forced to work for the club as their seventh member, and hide the fact that she's really a girl from the rest of the student body! A screwball romantic comedy now available as an anime, the series is complete at 18 volumes.
Maid-sama! by Hiro Fujiwara
Misaki Ayuzawa is the first female President of the Student Council at Seika High School, formerly an all boys' school. Unfortunately, most of the students are still male and stuck in their slovenly habits, so Misaki really socks it to 'em, eventually earning the nickname of the "Demon President" due to her mastery of Aikido and imposed iron rule. However, Misaki harbors an embarrassing secret—she has to work at a maid café to support her family! If anybody from her school were to find out, her reputation would be utterly destroyed. After Takumi Usui—the most popular boy at school—discovers her secret, that might just happen. Now available as an anime, the series is complete at 18 volumes.
Monthly Girls' Nozaki-kun by Izumi Tsubaki; translation, Leighann Harvey; lettering, Lys Blakeslee.
To the eyes of classmate Chiyo Sakura, high school student Umetarou Nozaki--brawny of build and brusque of tongue--is a dreamboat! When Chiyo finally works up the courage to tell Nozaki how she feels about him, she knows rejection is on the table ... but getting recruited as a mangaka's assistant?! Never in a million years! As Chiyo quickly discovers, Nozaki-kun, the boy of Chiyo's dreams, is a manga artist ... a hugely popular shoujo manga artist, that is! But for someone who makes a living drawing sweet girly romances, Nozaki-kun is a little slow on the uptake when it comes to matters of the heart in reality. And so Chiyo's daily life of manga making and heartache begins!
My Love Story! story, Kazune Kawahara; art, Aruko; English adaptations, Ysabet Reinhardt MacFarlane; translation, JN Productions
Giant Takeo Goda's love life takes a surprising turn when he saves a girl named Yamato, but will she be drawn instead to Takeo's handsome best friend, Sunakawa?
Nisekoi: False Love story and art by Naoshi Komi; translation, Camellia Nieh; touch-up art and lettering, Stephen Dutro
Raku, still searching for his childhood sweetheart whose name and face he cannot remember, is upset when his gangster father arranges a love match between Raku and a rival gang leader's daughter.
Sekirei by Gokurakuin Sakurako ; translation: Caleb D. Cook ; lettering: Phil Christie.
Minato Sahashi is a rounin, a two-time loser who's failed his college placement exams. Just as he's contemplating giving up and heading home, though, a chance encounter changes his life forever! Enter Musubi, a girl who literally falls into Minato's life! Musubi is a Sekirei, a modified human caught up in a game in which only one of her kind can be left standing. In order to be victorious in this contest, though, she needs to find her Ashikabi (her fated partner)...and guess who fits the bill?? Caught up in battle he barely understands, can Minato survive 'The Sekirei Project' and emerge victorious? Either way, with his buxom new cohort by his side, his life will certainly never be the same!
Shortcake Cake story and art by Suu Morishita ; translation Emi Louie-Nishikawa ; touch-up art & lettering, Inori Fukuda Trant.
An unflappable girl and a cast of lovable male roommates at a boarding house create bonds of friendship and romance. When Ten moves out of her parents' home in the mountains to live in a boarding house, she finds herself becoming fast friends with her male roommates. But can love and romance be far behind?
Skip Beat! by Yoshiki Nakamura
Sixteen-year-old Kyouko Mogami followed her childhood friend and love interest, Shoutarou "Shou" Fuwa, to Tokyo to support him while he works toward his dream of becoming a top idol in the entertainment industry. But after finding out that Shou considers her as little more than a mere housekeeper, she swears to enact revenge by entering the entertainment industry herself and beating him at his own game! Now available as an anime, the series is ongoing.
Assassination Classroom by Yūsei Matsui
The students in Class 3-E of Kunugigaoka Junior High have a new teacher: an alien octopus with bizarre powers and unlimited strength, who's just destroyed the moon and is threatening to destroy the earth—unless they can kill him first! Now it's up to his students, the would-be assassins of class 3-E, to destroy this alien threat and save the world! But it's not that easy as these misfits soon find that the strange, tentacled beast is more than just indomitable—he is the best teacher they have ever had! An action-packed comedy now available as an anime and complete in 21 volumes!
One-Punch Man by ONE
After rigorously training for three years, the ordinary Saitama has gained immense strength, empowering him to take out anyone and anything with just one punch. He decides to put his new skill to good use by becoming a hero. However, he quickly becomes bored with easily defeating monsters, and wants a challenge to bring back the spark of being a hero, especially since the public doesn't seem to know who he is! Originally published as a webcomic, the series is still ongoing, and an anime is available.
One Piece by Eiichiro Oda
As a child, Monkey D. Luffy was inspired to become a pirate by listening to the tales of the buccaneer "Red-Haired" Shanks. But Luffy's life changed when he accidentally ate the Gum-Gum Devil Fruit and gained the power to stretch like rubber—at the cost of never being able to swim again! Years later, still vowing to become the king of the pirates, Luffy, armed with just a straw hat, a small boat, and an elastic body, sets out on a fantastic journey to gather his own crew and a worthy ship that will take them across the Grand Line to claim the greatest status on the high seas. The series is ongoing and currently at 88 volumes, and there is an anime available.
Prison School by Akira Hiramoto; translation, Ko Ransom; lettering, Anthony Quintessenza.
On the outskirts of Tokyo stands Hachimitsu Private Academy, an all-girls boarding school for elite young women. But as the new school year rolls around, one tradition is going out the window: For the first time in the school's long history, boys are being allowed to enroll. On the first day of school, though, it turns out only five boys have made the cut. Thrilled by this discovery, these young men's adolescent hearts leap with joy at the thought of being surrounded by all those girls, but little do the five boys suspect the shocking fate that awaits them…
Ranma ½ story and art by Rumiko Takahashi; English adaptation, Gerard Jones, Matt Thorn
Years ago, Genma promised his old friend Soun Tendo that Ranma would marry one of Soun's three daughters and carry on the family's martial arts school. Except that the girl picked to be Ranma's bride doesn't seem to like him, Ranma keeps getting into fights...and did we mention that whole changing into a girl thing? The series is complete at 38 volumes.
Sorry for My Familiar story and art by Tekka Yaguraba ; translation, Andrew Cunningham.
When the demon girl Patty finds she's too weak to summon an animal familiar, she chooses a human instead. His name: Norman Volcanello--an eccentric guy with a dangerous fascination with exotic life forms. As Patty and Norman set out to find her missing father, an offbeat adventure begins!
Toilet-bound Hanako-kun by Aidalro ; translation: Alethea Nibley and Athena Nibley ; lettering: Jesse Moriarty, Tania Biswas.
At Kamome Academy, rumors abound about the school's Seven Mysteries, one of which is Hanako-san. Said to occupy the third stall of the third floor girls' bathroom in the old school building, Hanako-san grants any wish when summoned. Nene Yashiro, an occult-loving high school girl who dreams of romance, ventures into this haunted bathroom... but the Hanako-san she meets there is nothing like she imagined! Kamome Academy's Hanako-san...is a boy!
Urusei Yatsura story & art by Rumiko Takahashi; translation and English adaptation/Camellia Nieh; lettering/Erika Terriquez.
Beautiful space alien princess Lum invades Earth on her UFO, and unlucky Ataru Moroboshi's world gets turned upside down! Will Lum become Earth's electrifying new leader? Or will Ataru somehow miraculously save Earth from space alien onslaught?
Food Wars!: Shokugeki No Soma story by Yuto Tsukuda; art by Shun Saeki; translation, Adrienne Beck.
When Soma Yukihira's father enrolls him in a classy culinary school, Soma must learn if he can make the grade in such a prestigious environment.
Slice of Life
Aho-Girl by Hiroyuki; translator, Karen McGillicuddy; lettering, Maggie Vicknair
Yoshiko is a hopelessly clueless high school girl. Her rock-paper-scissors strategy is “rock.” She somehow gets zeroes on multiple-choice tests. And she has an often-nearly-fatal weakness for bananas. Her devoted friends have no choice but to hang around and make sure nobody takes advantage of her. (Of course, the entertainment value might have something to do with it, too.) Cute characters, weird gags, and lots and lots of bananas!
Arakawa Under the Bridge by Nakamura Hikaru ; translation, Andrew Cunningham.
Kou Ichinomiya, a young man born with a silver spoon in his mouth and raised with the mantra “never owe anyone” suddenly finds himself deeply indebted to a young homeless woman, Nino, who lives on the Arakawa river bank and claims to originally be from the planet Venus. When Nino rejects all of Kou’s mundane offers of money or housing, Kou is at a loss for how to repay his debt, until Nino suddenly asks him to teach her about love. A daunting task, but the over-achieving Kou is determined to return Nino’s favor. And so begins Kou’s life under the bridge, along with a band of eccentric characters who have formed their own little community outside the boundaries of typical Tokyoite life…
D-Frag! = Difuragu! story and art by Tomoya Haruno ; translation, Adrienne Beck.
Kazama Kenji thinks he's a delinquent. He's got the look, the style and the 'tude to match--he even has a second-rate entourage. Deep down, however, Kazama is a good-hearted kid who finds himself and his loyal gang in over their heads when they stumble upon the Game Development Club. The club's formidable members are four girls who he might actually be attracted to if they weren't so freakin' weird. The girls claim to have otherworldly powers which they use to defeat Kazama's gang and force him to join their offbeat club. Can Kazama resist the girls' bizarre charms and return to some semblance of a normal, everyday life...or is it "game over" for our hapless hero?
Eromanga Sensei story by Tsukasa Fushimi; art by Rin; character design by Kanzakihiro; translation, Dinky Spatz; based on the light novel series by Tsukasa Fushimi.
Writing light novels isn't all that easy, especially when you're in high school... and you have to do the cooking and the chores for your shut-in stepsister who's hardly come out of her room the past year! In the light novel business, it's crucial to have the right person illustrating your books to help them sell--and maybe get made into manga and anime! But in a world of online pen names, the author and the illustrator may still not even know each other... until one day they realize they've been living in the same house all along! Now the home life of confident writer Masamune Izumi and his reclusive sister Sagiri--aka the artist "Eromanga Sensei"--will be a drama to compare with their rising careers, their restive fan base, and their rivals in the industry!
Himouto! Umaru-chan story and art by Sankakuhead ; translation, Amanda Haley ; adaptation, Shanti Whitesides.
Behind closed doors, she's a completely different girl! Taihei's little sister Umaru is the picture of perfection: elegant, poised, and polite-not to mention drop-dead gorgeous, brilliant, and multitalented. She's the perfect high school girl who everybody envies and adores. What nobody knows is that this perfect little sister has a big secret!!
My Father is a Unicorn story & art by Monaka Suzuki ; translation, Nova Skipper ; adaptation, Jay Trust.
Uno Issei is still in high school when his mother remarries. His mom’s new husband, Masaru, is a nice enough guy, he just happens to be a unicorn. Sometimes in the form of a talking horse, sometimes in the form of a beautiful man, Masaru is determined to run the household while his wife is away and win Issei over. For better or worse, now Issei is stuck teaching this unicorn man how to be a good dad in this idiosyncratic comedy about the magic of family.
My Senpai is Annoying story & art by Shiromanta ; translation Alethea & Athena Nibley ; lettering & retouch Lys Blakeslee].
Note: Full Color
Igarashi is a hardworking young office lady. Takeda, the senpai above her at work, annoys her constantly–and yet she finds herself growing closer to him. Every day is filled with comic mishaps and romantic moments as Igarashi tries to balance work, life, and love. This full-color manga–which started its life as a webcomic–is sure to charm audiences of workplace comedies like Aggretsuko and The Office!
Silver Spoon by Hiromu Arakawa; translation, Amanda Haley; lettering, Abigail Blackman.
Time for a change of pace. Yuugo Hachiken flees the hustle and bustle of city life to enroll at Oezo Agricultural High School. At first he's just trying to outrun his problems, but instead he finds a place for himself in this quaint rural community. Between the classrooms and cowpatties, the boy becomes a man.
The Way of the House Husband story and art by Kousuke Oono; translation, Sheldon Drzka; English adaptation, Jennifer LeBlanc; touch-up art & lettering, Bianco Pistillo.
He was the fiercest member of the yakuza, a man who left countless underworld legends in his wake. They called him 'the Immortal Dragon'. But one day he walked away from it all to travel another path--the path of the househusband! The curtain rises on this cozy yakuza comedy!