My biggest complaint with the first volume of So Cute it Hurts!! was that I thought it focused a bit too much on boy twin Mitsuru’s adventures cross-dressing as a girl, without as much character development or action for his sister Megumu pretending to be her brother at a school largely populated by juvenile delinquents. I was happy to see that in the second volume Megumu gets a larger chunk of the story.
One of the things that I’ve enjoyed in Ikeyamada’s series so far is that the plot moves fairly fast. Developments that might take at least a two volumes to be explored in another series are quickly resolved, only for even more complications to pop up. Also, many of the issues that the characters have are so ridiculous, I find it extremely entertaining. Megumu pretending to be her brother grows closer and closer to head one-eyed delinquent Aoi Sanada, who turns out to have a deadly Achilles heel involving female company. If he so much as touches a girl, he immediately feels faint and sick. It is to Megumu’s credit that as soon as she finds this out after indulging in fantasies about revealing her true gender and confessing her love to Aoi, she vows to just remain at his side as a male because she doesn’t want to burden him by making him deal with her as a girl.
In the first volume there’s a hint that the deaf girl that Mitsuru likes, Shino and Aoi know each other. This is promptly explored in the second volume, continuing with the plot moving along quickly. Most of this volume will be very familiar to Hana Kimi fans, as Megumu’s natural cuteness shines through her boyish disguise, causing her classmates and Aoi in particular to experience odd feelings. Even though the romances in So Cute it Hurts!! are absolutely silly, there are a few sweet moments where it is clear that twins really do care about the objects of their affection. Overall, I was happy to see the additional character development I was hoping for and while So Cute it Hurts!! is not in any way profound, it is a nice brain candy type manga series.