A short high school girl who doesn’t know how to deal with boys discovers one day she has a crush-on the actor inside a bear mascot suit at an amusement park! Will she be able to overcome her shyness and go beyond simply loving cute things to loving the boy inside the suit?
I have to admit that with all the moe and post-modern manga out there these days, a classic old-school shoujo manga can really hit the spot. Haruka is adorable, with her love of cute things, and a good reason for her shyness. She’s the tallest in a very short family of all girls, and with her father passed away just even the sight of a tall boy petrifies her. What happens is a sweet, but quirky romantic comedy where the love interest’s identity is kept under wraps till the very end.
In fact, it’s refreshing just to have a manga where the boy isn’t beat up by his harem, or is crazy, or pushes up the nose of his glasses every five seconds. Or a girl that is twelve years old going on six hundred, an ax-crazy stalker, or co-dependent. What’s a little sad about modern manga is how abnormal it is at times. If there is a male heroine, it seems people are more interested in shipping him with other male heroines than having a traditional love story. If it’s a female, put them on a show with no male love interests at all and have light to heavy yuri love-love.
So we’ve actually gone full circle. What was normal before is a candidate for weird manga of the day simply because the world has changed. I think this is part of the reason I like older shoujo so much; it keeps the spirit of classic manga along with a refreshing innocence, while avoiding the staleness of shonen manga. You can find Bear Bear here, and it’s a cool little read.