Manga Review: Maid-sama! Omnibus Volumes 3-4

Maid-sama! Omnibus Volumes 3-4 collects two volumes of Maid-sama! together into one release. The series focuses on Misaki Ayuzawa, a 16-year-old girl serving as the student council president at a formerly all-boys’ high school. She needs to earn money to help her family, and secretly works at a maid café. Her secret is discovered by popular boy Takumi Usui, and it appears that Takumi has feelings for Misaki.

Maid-sama! Omnibus Volumes 3-4
Written by: Hiro Fujiwara
Publisher: Hakusensha
English Publisher: VIZ Media
Release Date: November 3, 2015

This omnibus opens by continuing the school’s sports day, with a specific focus on the final event: the Dress-Up Race. The usual participants are the students who aren’t athletically inclined, and it’s a race that’s not taken seriously. However, both Misaki and Takumi decide to enter the race. Student council vice president Shouichirou Yukimura also competes, with Misaki giving him encouragement. This storyline includes humorous moments, but it also has a very important lesson and some minor character growth for Shouichirou. It was also nice to see a character other than Misaki and Takumi being focused on in the series.

At the maid café, the owner wants to have a “little sisters” theme day. Misaki doesn’t think she can do it and tries to get out of working that day, but her co-workers call her out on it. In fact, one of them challenges her to learn how to be a “little sister,” or Misaki will be fired. It was interesting to see the normally confident Misaki poring over various manga and trying to learn how to have the “little sister” personality. While we see her working as hard as usual, it’s also a little amusing to see Misaki looking at the “girly” things she normally wouldn’t touch with a ten foot pole.

Maid-sama! Omnibus 3-4 also introduces Aoi Hyoudou, a relative of the owner of the maid café. Aoi is an internet idol who has an eye for Takumi. Not surprisingly, Takumi isn’t interested and Aoi becomes jealous of Misaki. There’s a very surprising revelation about Aoi during this volume, and it really changes how the reader looks at the character going forward. Personally, I’m not a fan of Aoi. I think this character is rather annoying and doesn’t truly add much of anything to the Maid-sama! series.

Then, a mysterious boy is lurking around the halls of Seika High School and causing strange things to happen. This person even manages to have an effect on Misaki. By the end of this storyline, the mysterious boy appears to be redeemed, but I’m not expecting him to return to the story any time in the near future. To be honest, it felt like his ability was a little on the exaggerated side, which caused me to not entirely enjoy this character’s storyline.

The remainder of the volume sees the staff of the maid café going to the beach to spend time with the boss’ little sister. They find themselves using their maid café personas to help out the struggling business that’s run by the boss’ sister. Unfortunately, we also have to deal with Aoi in this story. Takumi comes along on the trip as well, since he’s been asked to help out at the maid café a lot. It appears that his being there is an important part of developing Misaki and Takumi’s overarching storyline.

There are also two bonus stories included in this volume. Personally, I didn’t care much for the first one, because it was just simply too weird. The second one basically shows the idiot trio’s jealousy of the time Takumi spends with Misaki. It wasn’t weird, but it didn’t really add much, either.

When it comes to the art in this volume, I give Fujiwara credit for all the detail she puts into drawing Aoi’s curly hairstyle. It’s such a stark contrast from the “messy” hairstyles that the other characters are usually given. There are also some close-ups of Misaki and Takumi that are very expressive and really stand out. When Fujiwara puts the effort in, she can draw some fantastic art.

Maid-sama! Omnibus Volumes 3-4 should appeal to readers who have read the previous two volumes in the series and enjoyed them. There are some good moments between Misaki and Takumi in this omnibus that fans won’t want to miss reading.

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