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So-Bad Sunday! Ramen Ikaga?!(Prince of Ramen)-Manga

Ordinary high-school student and "The School's First Ranked Bishonen," Shirafugi Sumire, likes ramen. That's not odd. I freaking love ramen. I prefer good ramen (real imported ramen that is not 5/$1), but I'm not one to put on airs, I'll eat poverty-ramen and I'll like it. So, a reliance on ramen as plot-device doesn't really make this a manga deserving of So-Bad Sunday! status. In fact, I don't really know that Ramen Ikaga?! is a bad manga...it's just a little stranger than most things I read. Nah...nah, it's bad. Bad and goofy and random and just..."really?" We'll get to the story soon, I promise, but first I want to talk about ramen some more.

Here's my favorite kind:


Ooooh, so tasty. The price above is for a case of it--$17.95 for one packet would be almost as ridiculous as the plot of Ramen Ikaga?! Even with the good ramen (or udon) you have to doctor it up--I suggest green onions, a little carrot, some thin sliced celery, a can of those little salad shrimp and maybe even an egg. Freaking awesome! Sooo spicy good! But my favorite thing about the Nong Shim Neoguri Spicy Seafood Udon Type Noodle is that I have never had to marry an extraterrestrial pervert as a result of making it.


Sumire is waiting for his Prince!
Ramen Ikaga?! begins with Sumire making ramen, the instant he pours hot water in the bowl he discovers that things are not what they appear to be. The bowl itself is actually the spaceship of the Second Crown Prince of Cup Ramen, Kanmen (his name actually means "dried noodle"...eyeroll), who hails from the planet of Cup Ramen on the far side of the Andromeda Galaxy. When Sumire adds water to his ramen he unwittingly proposed to Kanmen according to their planet's customs. The men on Cup Ramen are actually miniature and only grow to human size when their partner pours water on them, intending to "couple" (their words, not mine). Sumire refuses, but Kanmen is pretty persistant (despite the fact that he already has an arranged marriage back on planet Cup Ramen), and the  miniature Prince Charming harasses Sumire by flying around in his ramen space ship and wooing him in all sorts of "comical" ways.

I think it's trying too hard. There are "panda bombs" and a dominatrix disguised as a "dangerous infirmary sensei" (I think they mean school nurse...to top off the weirdness, the translation is pretty bad as well), boy/boy one-sided love obsessions, and then it gets, surprisingly, weirder. There's another prince from planet Spagettina (named, appropriately, Carbonara, and whose spaceship is a giant floating version of Michaelangelo's David) who wants Sumire for his own, and uses an impossible to defeat fighting style called "al dente" to steal Sumire from Kanmen whle they're on a date and the amusement park, and later Kanmen is snatched by his fiance Princess Rainmen, a uber-cute yandere (""sweet outside-crazy inside") girly-girl weilding a mace....and then there's body-switching, and everybody (EVERYBODY) falls in love with boring Sumire...aargh! This shit is just stupid. I mean, okay, okay, "look at the imagination!" I guess?  Here's my question: how dumb is too dumb? I mean, I would give a little lea-way if this were for kids, but it isn't. It's yaoi, and it's a little pervy at points. I just cannot imagine what was going through a publisher's head when they thought, "You know what? This is brilliant." It isn't. It isn't brilliant, and no amount of puns or quirky tongue-in-cheekness is going to save this manga from being anything except bad.

Despite that, I'm kind of glad I read it, because it is the kind of thing that makes and impression. Not a good impression, mind you, but an impression nonetheless. So, Dear Readers, Ramen Ikaga?! deserves a place on Squeefinity's So-Bad Sunday! list. Man, is it bad. Just...phenomenally bad.

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