Story & Art by Nanashi
Edited by Kristi Fernandez
Translated by Kumar Sivasubramanian
Production by Risa Cho & Eve Grandt
The antics of Nagatoro and Senpai continue in Don’t Toy With Me, Miss Nagatoro Volume 2! While the previous volume gave readers a taste of the series’ premise, the second volume showcases the creativity of Nanashi’s gags while deepening the cast’s relationships.
Any comedy lives and dies by the strength of its humor, and Miss Nagatoro is no exception. Each chapter of the series follows a rigid structure that usually results in Nagatoro teasing Senpai. That said, how each chapter reaches that conclusion is constantly changing. Nanashi rarely uses the same scenario twice and even shifts the power dynamic in Nagatoro and Senpai’s relationship midway through chapters. This is most evident whenever Senpai embarresses Nagatoro during her teasing attempts, pushing the narrative tension away from Senpai and towards Nagatoro. These shifts help prevent the comedy from becoming stale, while maintaining the series’ comedic foundation. Still, between the barrage of gags, the series does try to give Nagatoro and Senpai more substance. As the volume progresses, it’s increasingly clear that Nagatoro has romantic feelings for Senpai, and her teasing of him is her method of venting those emotions. Chapter 11 makes this most clear, as we see Nagatoro visibly upset when her friends try to bully Senpai. It’s clear that Nagatoro’s teasing does not hold animosity, but is rather a means to stay close to Senpai. Conversely, Senpai is gradually shown to enjoy Nagatoro’s company despite her disruptive behavior, and has even begun to see her more amicable qualities. While Miss Nagatoro is still an episodic story at its core, it’s nice to see that the characters are displaying growth, and that makes their daily lives all the more enjoyable to watch.
Nanashi’s artwork is as solid as ever in this volume. What makes the series’ art so effective is its depiction of Nagatoro herself. Since the series revolves around Nagatoro’s teasing of Senpai, many of the manga’s panels focus on Nagatoro’s behaviors and reactions. Among these, Nagatoro’s facial expressions around Senpai hold the most weight, as we see them dramatically change throughout her interactions with him. It immediately conveys Nagatoro’s mental state, whether it’s enjoyment over teasing Senpai or her shock over Senpai’s actions. Like Senpai, the reader is watching Nagatoro’s every move and Nanashi makes that an entertaining experience.
Don’t Toy With Me, Miss Nagatoro continues to be a thoroughly entertaining comedy that will provide readers with some much needed levity. Nanashi’s humor has continued to be strong, and the series’ character writing has developed substantially. Nagatoro isn’t going to stop toying with Senpai or readers anytime soon.