Title: I'm the Villainess, So I'm Taming the Final Boss Vol. 1
Author: Sarasa Nagase
Release Date: October 26, 2021
Publisher: Yen Press
The manga adaptations of light novels are responsible for conveying scenes from the source material into something that fans themselves imagined. I’m the Villainess, So I’m Taming the Final Boss Vol. 1 does this brilliantly throughout the entire chapter, offering readers a chance to learn about this fantasy isekai world and expand on the cast’s personality. It’s a fun romp that rarely stumbles.
I’m the Villainess, So I’m Taming the Final Boss Vol. 1 introduces Aileen d’Autriche, who has just been broken up with. She has everything to lose financially in these moments, but that’s not really what is weighing on her. She begins to have flashback memories of a time when she was in a hospital playing a video game. She’s living through scenes of the video game and understands that she’s in a position to not only lose everything but possibly her life.
To stop this, she comes up with a plan to romance the Demon King Claude. In the game, this man is the cause for many of her bad ends, so if she can romance him, she may survive this. The problem is avoiding triggers that may possibly kill her, though, so she tries to stay one step ahead as events pop up. Explaining these scenes requires some knowledge of the otome genre, but the story does a beautiful job of pacing readers through events.
There’s just so much depth to Aileen as she tries different ways to get the attention of Claude. Further, the author wraps up the idea that any action she takes could send her down a particular route, such as a sadist route or something similar. The video game references are brief and don’t overcrowd the narrative, but I wish she held onto the secret for a bit longer. I guess it wasn’t a secret, to begin with, but the rules of this world are flimsy as it stands.
The illustrations depict gorgeously drawn characters. Aileen is a pretty girl, but she isn’t this drop-dead beauty. In fact, she’s a bit scary at times, and that fits into the narrative wonderfully. On the other hand, Claude is handsome and is always seen with a lonely expression. Getting to know more about him in the upcoming chapters will be necessary.
I don’t think romance is really the issue right now. Aileen is simply trying to survive, and she makes that clear to Claude. However, there’s something there between that I hope develops further. However, it will be tough as she is focused on not meeting a bad end, so a relationship might distract her from her plans.
I’m the Villainess, So I’m Taming the Final Boss Vol. 1 is a great manga adaptation of a fun light novel. The references to video games and light isekai premise don’t overwhelm the reader with exposition or chapters of rules. The pacing is kept fast and witty as you constantly look forward to how Aileen will avoid a trigger and reach her goal. Further, its humorous tone allows fans of both fantasy and cute boys a chance to enjoy it.
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