Love So Pure S1 | Review
Rating - ⭐⭐⭐1/2
"It's easy to get laid when you're a pretty, sassy bartender working at a popular gay bar. This lifestyle suits Jihyun just fine since he loves casual hookups without any intimacy… That is until he meets Yohan—his big, scary-looking classmate who's actually a pure-hearted sweetie. Can Yohan's simple love help commitment-phobic Jihyun heal from the traumas of his past?"
Love So Pure is an ongoing BL webcomic by Plan B, with Season 1 consisting of episodes 1-38.
I know I shouldn't start series that aren't finished because I can't handle not being able to binge it, I was curious and caved. Do I regret it, not at all? While I wasn't too crazy about Jihyun and Yohan's romance, I did have a good time reading this (mainly for the side characters).
Let's get into the details.
When you read a manhwa or webcomic, you know you are in for a treat because it is going to feature wonderful full-colour digital art that is a feast for the eyes. And, this doesn't disappoint, because we've got a ton of pretty characters in this.
One thing I do find interesting though is the way the author chose to depict Yohan and his brother Yosef. They are both extraordinarily, and possibly disproportionately, buff and may not be considered the usual kind of attractive. Compared to the rest of the cast, Yohan is a bit plain looking which threw me off a bit but was an interesting choice.
One issue I did have with art sometimes was the depiction of motion. I found the motion blur to be off at times and it threw me out of the story a bit.
We follow Jihyun, a guy who likes his relations with no strings attached, who meets too-nice-for-his-own-good Yohan. Their romance was a lot more dragged out than I expected it to be because they had a lot of trauma to unpack. There were also not a lot of sex scenes which was surprising as well considering the themes in this.
This is BL, and I have found that they have a hard time staying away from triggering topics and unhealthy relationships. I saw many people comment that this story did a good job at handling the sensitive subjects without using them as a plot device, and I don't entirely agree with them.
I had some issues with the overarching themes of this season, such as Yohan disregarding his own feelings and changing his appearance for Jihyun. I also had an issue with the fact that consent, kinks, and safewords weren't discussed on page. Jihyun ended up roping (literally) Yohan into BDSM and I don't think Yohan knew what was going on. Jihyun also asked for a safe word after the fact which wasn't good.
There were some small details, like having marathon sex after getting tattooed, which bothered me because that ain't proper after care.
As I said earlier on, while I overall enjoyed myself reading this, following Jihyun and Yohan was a bit difficult for me. Jihyun has clear issues with dating and intimacy as a by-product of his tragic backstory, and Yohan makes some questionable decisions in order to stay with him that I didn't agree with (which I mentioned already). They do end up growing as characters though which is good to see.
My favourite characters who ended up stealing the show are Daeshik and Yosef. Season 2 actually follows the romance between Daeshik and Yosef, which is what pretty much everyone wanted the second the two first met and the author delivered. Daeshik is just a determined cinnamon role and Yosef is big, broody, and tattooed.
I did say earlier on how I don't think this handled some sensitive topics too well, but what was done well was Daeshik's character progression. Without going into detail, Daeshik had certain opinions as a product of his environment, but once he realized he was in the wrong he took the time to educate himself, and I really liked that.
As for the last supporting character, Sohae, her character arc was a bit odd and I am not entirely sure I liked how quick her character turned around (especially because of the lack of discussion surrounding it). That being said though the author did a good job at making characters you hate with a vengeance.
In all honesty, my thoughts on most of the characters is that they could really use some good therapy.
I am currently reading through S2, which I am admittedly enjoying far more than S1 and will come out with a review whenever it is finished. That being said, if you do want to read this, keep in mind that this is not a finished series, and I don't know how much longer you have to wait before it is.
If you do want to take the risk and read this, you can read the webcomic on Tapas, but keep in mind that only the first three episodes are free.
There are also two different versions as well, one with a normal rating and a mature one. The normal version cuts out the sex scenes while the mature version includes them (albeit they are still censored via lightsabers).
As a final note, I would like to remind you to check the trigger warnings. There are some in this, and if you are concerned they are always listed at the beginning of the chapter when needed.