For my next go at manga I decided to try one that isn’t famous – Addicted To Curry in fact hasn’t been licensed for publication in English-speaking countries, so I was reliant on online “scanlations” – fan translations on scanned images. The amount of work and dedication that must go into producing these is phenomenal so thankyou O unknown copyright infringer!

I chose Addicted To Curry on title alone. Here is what it’s about: a schoolgirl has been left in charge of her father’s curry house, which is failing because she can’t cook. She saves a dying man in the street who turns out to be an amazing young chef and an old friend of her father’s. Together they work to make the curry house a success! Every episode features:

  • a business dilemma they must solve using the power of curry!
  • a scene in which someone tastes the curry and goes “OMG THIS IS AMAZING!” for a whole page
  • a curry recipe

The storytelling is fast paced though the art is very sketchy – sometimes faces have just been left off. Some nice touches though – I like the way the characters turn into dinky little cartoon creatures when they’re talking you through the recipe. I haven’t tried any of the recipes – they all seem happily inauthentic but probably quite tasty. And obviously this is a plot and style and subject matter you would never in a grillion years get in a Western comic, which is one of the things Western readers associate with manga and like about it.

Another thing Western readers associate with manga is gratuitous schoolgirl pervertalism, and Addicted To Curry also delivers on this. The talented young chef is also a lech and a groper, and every episode has a comical sequence in which he peers in on his employer in the shower, fondles her cousin, stares up her skirt etc, receiving a slap for his pains. This gets old very quickly – combined with the formulaic story structure it led me to give up on ATC after a few episodes. Interesting as an illustration of manga’s range, but not recommended.