Can we discover to 75 years with a passion as all-consuming as unlikely? For Yuki, one of the two heroines of BL Metamorphosis , the answer is undeniably yes. The chance of his life, Yuki buys a manga to the cover intriguing. In reading home, she discovers the universe of the manga “BL”. Understand the Boy’s Love , a genre that deals with romance between boys. Be charmed by this discovery, she returns the next day to the bookstore to buy the sequel and meeting the young Urara, bookseller at half-time and fan of the genre. A friendship develops between the two women, despite – or perhaps because of – all their differences.
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pre-published on the website of the magazine NewType, this manga signed Kaoru Tsurutani escapes classification by kind of reading and reader so common in Japan. Surely through the very great freedom of tone of its author. In recounting how the accident of life allows two people to pass the “read together” to “living-together”, it twists the neck to the prejudices and received ideas. With a sincerity that is as disconcerting in life as in her work, she invites readers to take the time. The time to live your passion, the time to listen to the other. She drew on her memories of a high school student to create the character of Urara. This experience gives an authenticity to the whole event and reinforces the message of the author.
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Hard to believe that it is the first series of Kaoru Tsurutani. Everything in this title is flirting with perfection. The characters and original endearing scene filled with tenderness will affect both fans of BL as the neophytes of the genre. There are books that not only carry their readers, but also transform them. BL Metamorphosis is part of the closed circle of book marking that will accompany the player throughout his life. Major of japanese literature, a fan of comics of all countries, Kaoru Tsurutani deck in all the universe, as well as in his personal experience to create a work of sincerity disconcerting.
Hard to believe that it is the first series of Kaoru Tsurutani. Everything in this title is flirting with perfection. Kaori/Ki-oon
LE FIGARO: How would you the genre “Boys love”?
Kaoru TSURUTANI: This is quite difficult because the market is very broad. It is a genre that takes on many facets. Nevertheless, one may distinguish between two categories, the BL app that is going to develop a friendship between boys, or among a group of boys, who through the eyes of the fans, it can be interpreted as that the boys love. And the BL explicit, without ambiguity, see the descriptions of raw and even erotic. In the end, it is a very large genus within which the reader can find something that suits him.
Is it that you are a fan of Boys Love?
Yes, and I still read today. I discovered the genre by chance, I was collégienne and I took a manga just for its cover. And this is the reading that I understood what it was.
Is this like your heroine Yuki reading has changed your life?
I read a lot, but the three people I have the most influence are Fusako Kuramochi, Yumiko Oshima and Fumiko Takano (the authors of “manga shojo”, that is to say, for teenage girls, editor’s note) . What are three mangaka who have a great talent for descriptions, moods and psychological explanations. I’ve also been much influenced by Hayao Miyazaki. And in another genre, the writer Izumi Kizara and the director Yuzo Morita also.
where did you get the idea of this unlikely meeting between Yuki and Urara?
I wanted to tell a story associated with the world of Boys Love. My editor suggested I include an older person in the story. I brought this idea home to me and have been left to mature. I have always been close to my grandmother, I think we have somewhat the same relationship as Urara with Yuki. Like Urara, I’m rather down-to-earth, to me to focus on what is wrong, where my grand-mother has more ease, it does not pay attention to small things like Yuki. In this respect it resembles the two heroines in the manga. At the level of the narrative structure, I wanted the two characters have opposite polarities. As the layers are reversed one from the other.
Even their first names are asymmetric in japanese. How did you choose them?
I write a lot of haiku, and Yuki and Urara are the key words of the season. Yuki means winter and Urara is in the spring. This is how I’ve chosen to use these names, to give a distinct color to the characters. One a bit more cold, the other a little warmer. My idea in starting it was to make them confront, but in the end the names are not the reflection of the being. Finally, their names are the reverse of their character.
In fact, Yuki is radiant, and Urara a little morose…
Urara has a character the opposite of what its name represents. It was a little difficult to bear his name. It therefore behaves in a manner shifted with respect to the image associated with his name, I found it worthwhile to exploit.
You feel closer to Yuki or Urara?
I am also close to the two. But Urara follows the path that I have followed, so I plan to be more easily my feelings through it.
preliminary Research for the design of the character, Yuki. © Kaori Tsurutani 2018 / KADOKAWA CORPORATION
more and more manga featuring older people. Is this the birth of a new genre?
What interests me above all, is to not be stuck in a genre.
As Urara, who does not wish to be what society expects of her?
quite. It has so many things that trying to fit in marketing today. Be it gender, appearance, age, etc, My sensitivity as a reader leads me to read things that go beyond these divisions.
But Urara is still very caring. Why?
This character nice, this attention to the other, it is a common point of the two characters.
This common point is-it a way to criticize the disappearance of this quality in the contemporary society?
indeed, it is a something that strikes me often comes to mind. Beyond a lack of kindness or attention, I have the impression that it is more a lack of time, freedom of mind. It no longer has a place for this kind of conditions. Everything is calculated today in terms of profit and loss. It is not healthy to cover everything with this logic.
You have to juggle two styles of drawing are different, depending on whether one is in the story or in the manga’s story. Which is the most natural for you?
In fact, I’m inspired by my readings of Boys Love to draw manga in my work. And thus distinguish them from the “reality”, that it is illustrated with my line the more natural.
Yuki and Urara are mutually influencing one another “morph”. Is it that you have been profoundly changed by a person?
Yes, I am daily influenced by encounters. I’m still young but I imagine that arriving at a certain age it becomes difficult to change. On the other hand I have the certainty that it is necessary not to remain enclosed in a yoke which is not appropriate. To be stuck in a certainty.
The storyboard of the first chapter was extremely detailed. Here the scene where Yuki discovers a manga. © Kaori Tsurutani 2018 / KADOKAWA CORPORATION
In a society as dense as Japan, so many people are isolated, why in your opinion?
I think the main cause is that today the world is too busy. But also that there is a lack of spaces for communities to gather.
How to fix it?
There needs to be more public places that are accessible where people can come together. Such as parks, for example. The screenwriter Aya Watanabe said that the company’s lack of place to hang out, where to relax. He is right.
Is that of the readers or of the readers, you have reached out to thank you for having helped them to accept their tastes in reading and not feel marginalized?
It happened to me to have this kind of reaction in fact. But what really made me happy is the reaction of some male readers. That came to me to explain that until now they did not understand the interest to read of the BL, and only through BL Metamorphosis, they understood what could be the goal. But it is important to keep in mind that I only showed a facet of type BL, which is a kind polymorphic and prolific.
What are your recommendations to discover the BL?
More than titles, I highly recommend the three following authors: Asumiko Nakamura, Fumi political and development agenda and Karice Mako.
The story-boards of the chapters after the first are more oriented on the cutting and the dialogues main. The staging and dressing are carried out directly for the final version. © Kaori Tsurutani 2018 / KADOKAWA CORPORATION
What is the main message you want to convey to readers?
to Live the way we want. And do not take negatively the desire to give something to others. In japanese culture, the self-sacrifice is very idealized, so it is very often criticized or caricatured. It is necessary not to think that we are going to lose in giving, it is necessary to do without to do without to remember.
Yuki becomes a fan of a manga to the point of calculating the number of volumes that still need to be read before his likely death. That is what has inspired this very moving scene?
The original idea came from the rhythm of publishing is very slow that one can see in most of the BLs. I said to myself that if it was in the skin of a person in end-of-life this would be a reflection that we could do it the natural way.
How have you balanced between the tragic and the utopian in this scene?
For the balance, that is hindsight and self-denial shown by the seniors on their situations. Be able to look at their situation at the time very cold, but also with a certain time lag, and humor. I envy their ability to detach themselves from materialism.
do you Have a message for your French readers?
The fact of changing countries, cultures, that means having to change the way they think and approach things. I learned a lot of comics foreign. If I could inspire French readers I would be very happy.
interview in Tokyo, in February 2019