In honor of Yaoi-Con coming up this weekend, I’m reviewing Yaoi Press‘ two-part yakuza comedy, The Yaoikuza. Because, I mean, who doesn’t like mansex? (And also, the review’s overdue, even by my lackadaisical standards. Sorry, Yamila!)
In the first part, “Soboruji”, Sobokuna is awarded with time with a Chinese (male) whore by his mob boss, Aruji. When Sobokuna discovers the whore is… looser than he hoped, Aruji steps in to help. When the whore leaves after his paid time expires, Aruji and Sobokuna are left to their own devices. Whatever will they do? ^_^
In the second part, “Oruji”, Sobokuna’s older brother, Okina, demands retribution for their mob boss, Aruji, supposedly “turning Sobokuna gay”… Aruji decides to humor him and is “overpowered” by the bigger man. Both these stories involve the boss (someone I’d assume to be seme) actually playing the uke part, which I found interesting. It was a nice play on the power dynamics upon which many crime syndicates are built.
I’m going to be honest here. I’m not really a gangster story aficionado, and I probably don’t have enough standard story lines in my mental repertoire to fully imagine the two parts of The Yaoikuza. (The title is a portmanteau of “yaoi” and “yakuza“—the general name for any number of organized crime syndicates in Japan. The Italian-based equivalent is “mafia”.) With that said, I had a hard time following these two stories. One minute the characters are walking through a gentleman’s club, and the next they’re sexing it up in the mob boss’ office. I mean, not that there’s anything wrong with that (it is supposed to be porn, after all) but I guess I just like a little more story before the sex. A little more… foreplay… if you’ll pardon the pun.
I’d classify The Yaoikuza as PWP and, despite the publisher’s note that they can be read in any order, I recommend reading them in chronological order: “Soboruji” and then “Oruji”. I’m not counting this series out, even though I have reservations about it—I would definitely read the next couple “chapters” (so to speak) of it, if there were any. Seeing any more, however, seems unlikely at this point since it’s been more than six months since the last update on the series’ website and almost a year since the most recent substantial update.
I’d also like to see an editor read through The Yaoikuza a couple times just for copy-editing, sentence structure, grammar, and spell-checking purposes. I noticed a couple spelling mistakes (both were correctly spelled words that were actually the wrong word; ie: “shot” when it should have been “shoot”) myself, though I wasn’t reading critically for that purpose.
Overall, I think I was unfortunately disappointed with The Yaoikuza. It’s a great idea and it had (still has, if the series is continued) potential; I just don’t know how well it was executed. Maybe this series is more for people who already like mafia stories and/or PWP? I don’t know, but it didn’t make me want to go out and find more gay yakuza sex.