Sora & Haena - Reviews

Alt title: Sora Haena!

Sora & Haena
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moochz's avatar
Sep 26, 2022

I didn’t like it. It started out fine, but devolved further and further until finishing it became a complete chore.

Art: art is fine. The character designs are actually the reason I read this in the first place

The characters: ok the real bone I have to pick is with the main character, Sora. she started out sympathetic but the longer the story went the more I disliked her. She’s supposed to be smart- one of the top students in her area- but she never, ever, displays this. she's just ditsy and led around by her feelings and other than her suposed test scores, there's no indication she's not below average intelligence. she never has a chance to be smart or bookish in the plot other than wave her tests with 100s around like it negates every dumbass thing she's done

How on earth did she go from having zero friends due to her social ineptitude to having 2 ride or die ones, a girl friend, and a model who’s head over heels for her without changing a single aspect of her personality? She bemoans having no one because of the way she is, but gathers people with no effort. All she does is flop around, meet people awkwardly for coffee, have weird relationships with her teachers, be a people pleaser, and have zero personality 

Plot: there is no plot. Its just 50 chapters of a chemistry-less pair trying to get their shit together while I got increasingly frusterated with them. it's not even dumb teens beign dumb teens, it's painfully contrived. 

And lastly: it's boring. Oh god, it’s just so boring. So, so little happens, and the drama that does happen is either so quick it's basically useless and just a twist for the end or is so inconsequential that barely anything changes 

7/10 story
8/10 art
5/10 characters
6/10 overall
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JailBait707's avatar
Mar 1, 2024

Realistically there are three stories to go over for "Sora & Haena" since this covers the main story "Sora & Haena" (~51 chapters), the side stories (16 chapters), and the spin off "Ah-Young & Jae-in" (22 chapters). Im going off the fact the number of chapters listed on anime planet is 89, so I'll be including the other two. Though I'll mainly focus on Sora & Haena even though my memories are more fresh for the latter two.

Story: 

Sora & Hae-na 

At the beginning I truly was interested and there were multiple aspects of this that pulled me in to continue reading. I loved watched Sora develop as a character and see the many relationships she ended up maintaining. Though, there were times where I couldn't quite understand said relationship due to Sora's character. (More about that below). I loved the friendship between Ah-Young and Sora, especially with how much you see both girls care for each other. I loved seeing how they mended an issue and how Sora grew to allow herself to rely on Ah-Young. Their dynamic with Jae-in is also admittedly quite entertaining and the banter and situations they end up in make the trio very enjoyable. 

Upon noticing I'm discussing the characters relationships I'll continue forth by listing certain story aspects.

•The aspect of discovering your sexuality was admittedly good, definitely not perfect, and maybe not great but it was a good aspect I enjoyed about it. It was dragged on a bit too much on Haena's part, but Sora's realization regarding her sexuality was a lot better.

•Seeing the webtoon focus on not only the romantic relationships but also friendships was admittedly very refreshing and nice. It made the world seem a lot more lived in. 

•The fact there were both friendship struggles and relationship struggles is very nice. It allows an aspect and opportunity for the reader to see how differently the characters acted depending on the struggle. This is more so prevalent with Sora's character though as her friendships arel a ot more explored. 

•The best part of the series were the parts that focused on explicitly friendship. It was nice to see Sora build relationships and see how much she grew from hating going out to karaoke to going on an overnight trip. I love seeing the very different dynamics each character have with one another. 

•The drama between Sora and Ah-Young was admittedly a highlight and I loved watching how the two grappled and handled it. It was quite frankly the highlight for the entire manga for me, since their friendship was the thing I actually saw myself caring for the most. 

•I couldn't see myself caring for the two teachers and Taeram (I had to search up her name, that's how much I failed to care for her). Admittedly, yes I understand the place and purpose for the ditzy teacher and Taeram. (The other one is painfully irrelevant, under developed, and nonexistent half the time). Though even though I understand the purpose in the story, and the story itself may appeal to some I just couldn't care for it. I don't have any specific complaints rather than multiple parts being a bit much, but this story part may be it for someone one else and I can see why. 

•The build up of Eun woo and Sora's dynamic is also another enjoyable aspect and it was a good opportunity for the readers to see how Sora acted with someone who was practically the ideal guy. He's very kind and caring, and his personality just ends up mixing well with Sora's personality. I liked seeing how he personally cared for Sora and why, as well as seeing it start from just simple studying together in a secret hangout. It's very nice and sweet.

•Then, the worst part, the drama that lead to the ending/before the ending. To the point it made the ending almost infuriating to me. I would not write this much, or even recognize the other flaws in this webtoon had they not gone in this direction for the ending. It was so bad to me, and genuinely angered me, to the point I thought about everything else that bothered me. To put it quite simply, it's forced, annoying, dramatic, unnecessary, and overall just a waste of time. This drama made Haena's character painfully infuriating to me. It was complete unnecessary for the fact I fail to realize why Haena did what she did, why it had to last that long, how the two even continued on from that point, and why nothing changed character wise during it. They stayed stagnant, they still love eachother, nothing changed. It was so pointless and annoying for Haena's character that it's so nerve wracking. It doesn't matter to the story. It truly doesn't. If they still wanted to include Haena's mother they still could've done it, have Haena have a different reaction and all would be just the same. But I can't help but think they went the unnecessary drama route for the sake of more angst. It's not interesting. Its not character building. It's nothing but an annoying waste of time. To then have it end with us the readers being so caught off guard and confused as to what happened next. For context, the last chapter of this section was an epilogue and to go from them reuniting after unnecessarily long drama, to the epilogue gave me a run for my money. 

The Side Stories:

They're just porn. Multiple couples in the series have sex. You learn more about a relationship that got a conclusion to after being explored briefly in the main series, a relationship that was obviously bound to happen, and the relationship were used to. I'll briefly go over each one based off the appearance of each couple. 

•Explored briefly in main series: 

-The two teachers are roommates and the irrelevant one's feelings are hard to fully understand. Though I may possibly be dense. 

-Its somewhat nice to learn more about the context of each character and how they actually do feel about eachother. Issue is I just struggled to care. 

-The past student of the ditzy teacher has a sex dream about her and confesses her feelings after not doing anything for a bit. 

-Its nice to learn more about each characters emotional complexities if you care for these characters.

-There's some story but it's very obviously just porn. 

•Obviously bound to happen:

-They have sex after being drunk and just realized they love having sex with eachother, after denying it, also they obviously had some sort of feelings for the other during it all. 

-I like that they showed us how it all started. The buildup was nicer than the former. This part also explored more the characters emotions which were nice. 

-Like before some story but very obviously just porn. 

• Sora & Haena 

-the disaster couple who haven't even made out after two years get horny for eachother and navigate taking their relationship to the next level

-It's admittedly nice seeing how awkward some people can be for it, since the other two couples just went in for it. It also stands in for more of that type of flow for this couple. The awkwardness, panic, and confusion, as well as communication is good enough. 

-We learn about Eun woo's relationship. What the fuck? How the fuck? Why the fuck? Who even thought of this? I genuinely feel like that part made me drunk. 

-it's porn with a pre-show of getting to that level for peak disaster gays. They have sex a lot. That's it. 

Ah Young & Jae-in: 

This is an enemies to lovers story for two characters who very much dislike each other, always have, but in a way that makes it obvious there actually is potential to be a lot more.

•The beginning is set at a nice enough pace for the reader to understand how things went after they hooked up and decided to be something equivalent to 'friends'-with-benefits. It's very much high tension filled and is filled with a lot of bantering. 

-This is very much a couple that can only exist and stay together in fiction due to how terribly toxic it'd be in real life. Rather than an enemies to lovers where the enemies learn to love eachother and reveal other sides, these two stay consistent. They are just the type who fight. It's not bantering. It's fighting. They fight at every given opportunity. Though, actually, given how their characters are this makes sense for them. It's understandable for them to have this dynamic. 

-It's obvious that the two can most be open and themselves with eachother. It's very much, the other person has already seen every possible flaw to its maximum level, but they're also painfully addicted to each other. 

-I wish they clarified Ah-Young's whole deal of wanting to be real and herself a lot more. With how it was quite frankly presented it made it sound like the only one she was real with is Jae-in. Yes, it is true they are real to each other, and they are most comfortable showing their most raw emotions to the other. But I do not believe for one second that Ah-Young wasn't real or herself with Sora. First of all, Sora witnessed the two fight and bicker all the time so obviously Sora already knows about that aspect to Ah-Young. More importantly, there are scenes, multiple, where Ah-Young expresses how and why Sora is important to her. They literally have a mini arc where they reconcile and become better and stronger friends. Shes obviously herself with Sora, and I'm pretty sure she mentioned it too in the main series. That whole part always irked me the most because it made me feel like they just completely ignored an important friendship to the story. 

-The fighting and bickering takes on so many forms and aspects and it's honestly a good way to learn about each character. Yes they were developed in the main series but you truly start to get to know them more afterwards. This is multiplied by the fact you get to see how much each character does, what each character wants, and what each character thinks. It's honestly a good mix. 

-Miscommunication. Honestly that whole aspect was a bit much for me. It was to the point my favourite character Ah-Young was becoming a bit too much and almost too annoying for me. They just continued bitching to eachother, not talking to eachother because stubbornness is their middle name, and then to later on do it by absolutely exploding to the other. Then there's this whole layer of expectations that they obviously failed to get across. Their miscommunication and how terrible they are at communication in general is almost painful. 

-There's a scene where they literally have an argument and conversation in the middle of sex. Hate sex is their middle name. There's also another before that where one character was trying to talk about what's been going on, whilst the other tried to eat her out. As you can see, these two are only ever on the same level and wavelength during this webtoon when they are having sex. 

-Their fighting at times could be a bit draining for me and overall annoying. They literally were honest to eachother by screaming the entire time. I just fail to see how in any world or planet is what they have is healthy. So I'm just going to assume this is what works for them, what they like, how they work best, and is very much something thats not supposed to be regarded as couple goals and healthy. 

-I wish they could've talked sooner. Like properly actually talked. I know it's not for them and may not be what's their dynamic but it's genuinely so painful that the only time they can is if they're yelling at eachother. Then when one tries to have a civilised conversation it just turns into a whole ass argument. It's repetitive. It's a short spin off and they still managed to make it repetitive. There needs to be multiple examples of how their dynamic works out. We didn't get that. 

-This series was obviously drama galore and emotional turmoil city. It's almost as if the spin off was more so focused on the drama of it all. This mainly started after a phone call after a mishap. Then it just continued on with more issues and expectations. It got tiring. Before that though it was a lot more good. 

-How they made up and how Jae-in finally said her feelings was dramatic and I did like the scene, even though it was a bit much. Overall it's a lot better than the main series ending and what lead up to it. Though Eun-Ji's character exploration was good and it was nice seeing how deep her emotions actually ran, and how much she'd do, the whole process of it all was a bit tiring. I can't tell if that's Eun-Ji's fault or Ah-Young for being incredibly complicated and irritable.

-It's almost nice how they can show the absolute worst side of themselves to each other. Just wish we didn't only mainly see them at their worst moments. 

-The eipilogue for this series was nice and showed the star couple for the main series and obviously the main series for the spin off. More evidently though the bickering presented in this though is the more so cute and 'healthy' (?) kind. It was the nice dynamic I wanted from Eun-ji and Ah-Young so I'm glad they ended with that. 

-Oh also they have sex a lot here. 

Art: 

The character design and art for each character shows well for what type of character each one will be. The art allows the series to have a multitude of scenes varying from emotions to seriousness. The background all go well and naturally together. The chibi style for occasion small panel moments are adorable and adds charm.

There are moments of high emotional moments of pure anguish and sadness that I wish the emotions were more expressive. In general the faces are expressive but a part of me can't help but notice something is missing. 

The character design for some characters, specifically the more muscular ones are rather exaggerated to me. Overall it's something that always bothered me everytime I saw them. I just see like they're could've been more better designs that made it clear. This is just a personal thing though and may be another person's cup of tea.

Also Haena does this dazed look a lot where her pupils or rather eyes are small and she's just smiling. It always stood out to me for some reason.

Characters:

In general regarding the characters it's such a weird thing. I feel like Ah-Young and Eun-ji were at their best for the main series, more so on Ah-Young though. Eun-ji was more neutrul. For their own spin off they were just fighting the entire time and though I did appreciate how complex and deep their emotions were it wasn't exactly the best limelight. They just always seemed a lot more interesting then. I feel like this is due to the fact that both characters simply find it best to always just fight and scream at eachother as both are way too triggered by the otheer.

Ah-Young was someone who by definition is incredibly fake and the kind of character I'd personally hate. Yet her interactions with Sora and Eun-ji is what made her my favourite character. It's what brought out the best in her. I especially loved how emotional she was and genuinely wrecked it all was for her even though a part of her did have doubts. It's these feelings of jealousy that she briefly had is what made her deeper feelings explored interesting. Though in the spin off she was a lot more annoying due to how everything was protrayed. The story made the characters go down. 

Eun-ji was always a mysterious and mad character, but in a way it adds to her charm. She's at her best when she opens her heart to human relationships, and explored many different dynamics. Though her very straightforward personality and deadpan is partly what makes her a bad mix with Ah-Young. I love her the most when you the reader sees how Eun-ji reacts to certain things and different dynamics. Her coping mechanism is very in character but how she reacts to Ah-Youngs many antics is what helps her character shine to some degree.

Haena's mom is a huge part of her character and driving force so it atleast makes sense to a part of her ending decision. It's nice to see how she copes with things and learns to understand her feelings. She's the type to take most if not all things as platonic. She's very a mess emotions wise as she sucks at figuring out. Either way her can do spirit is very nice especially compared to how it bounces off of Sara. Her loneliness is quite nice character wise as well as her very infectious personality and social skills. Though parts of her decision at the end still angers me beyond belief.

Sora is the main and central character. Her character has definitely grown socially and seeing that development is nice and refreshing. She's overall a very shy kid so rather them her stepping out of her shell she just learned to open up more. Her approach as well as dedication is nice. Though we don't see much of her academic side, we don't see how in what other ways is she intelligent. Shes. obviously books smarts and we see that clearly but other than that and shyness there's not much else. Her development and watching her grow is nice but at times she can be quite unremarkable. 

Minor characters or secondary:

-Eun woo is a nice and kind sweet boy. His intentions is very sweet almost. I just like seeing his approach to things. He seems almost innocent but there's obviously a lot of him that's very caring.

-The teacher with short hair is terribly unremarkable and I forget everything about her expect that she's the other teachers roommate. I don't even understand her. 

-The teacher with the long hair is very ditzy and that's obviously an attempted charm point. It's sweet that she has two people constantly looking out for her. Her intentions are just always so pure hearted. Other than that she's rather dull and one note, though her deep ambition and determination is nice. 

-The muscular one or Taeram is so weird for me. It's just not for me. He's very dedicated to the teacher and that's very nice but other than that he's extremely one note. Just not much to his character or atleast we were given enough and it's just not enough for me to care for the character. 

Ultimately I cared a lot more for Eun-ji and Ah-Young as characters than Haena and Sora. 

Overall:

There are three stories to this if you want to read all 89 chapters. The amount of characters and depth added to each one makes the world seem very lived in. It focuses on both romance and friendship. Though the story tends to fall flat for certain drama moments that hold a strong effect to the story due to how much it happens. Some drama is good, some of it is handled well, but the ending of the main series is something that I will always consider a mistake. This drama allows the characters to be very developed, with nice character dynamics, but it also hinders the characters depending on who it is. If you want something to pass the time it's worth the shot but if you get bored midway through don't force yourself to finish it if you can't. It's a good read to past time, even though the story and characters may fall flat in some points. 

6/10 story
7/10 art
6/10 characters
6.5/10 overall
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Dolphinage's avatar
Oct 23, 2021

It's an endearing love story with cute and wholesome art style, it's quite worth it to read and will gives you some good chuckle along the way.

8/10 story
8/10 art
9/10 characters
8/10 overall
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NatsumeKhun's avatar
Oct 22, 2021

This was a very wholesome story with two girls slowly coming to terms about being gay as well as their feelings towards each other. Their relationship pushes both of them to becoming better people and just offers really feel good vibes. All the characters were different and interesting in their own ways. Really enjoyed this. 

7/10 story
7/10 art
7/10 characters
7/10 overall
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