Satomi Ikezawa's "Othello" really took me off guard.

For the handful of days I've been reading the manga Othello by Satomi Ikezawa. It's about a timid girl named Yaya that enjoys Visual Kei music and cosplay, but gets bullied by her toxic "friends". Upon reflecting on her life and aspirations, she ends up developing a "split personality" of sorts called Nana, who is bold, uninhibited, and stands up for herself. (Fun fact: The title "Othello" actually comes from the game Othello, which involves switching between two-sided board game pieces).

When I went into the series I expected it to mostly bee about Yaya gaining self-confidence and standing up to bullies, but there are some surprisingly dark aspects within the series. I don't want to get too much into the details, but there are several scenes involving unwanted sexual interactions and sexual assault. The scenes where these things occur are pretty short and not very graphic, but they still really took me off guard.

Overall, I think that Othello is a pretty decent shoujo series (I'd give it a 7.2 out of 10), but I feel like you should probably skip this one if you find these topics particularly triggering or distressing. ^_^


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