Manhwa Review: Blooming Sequence by Lee Eul

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Spoiler Warning!


Title: Blooming Sequence
Artist/Author: Lee Eul
Genre: Comedy, Drama, Romance, Yuri
Status: Ongoing (Currently 51 Chapters)

Seowoo, president of the film club, is standing outside in the rain, a welcome break from the noisy and chaotic bar behind her, when a girl with orange hair stumbles out the doors and practically into her arms. Then she begins singing “Dancing in the Rain” while… dancing in the rain. It’s a minute encounter, really, but Seowoo has seen the greatest romances bloom from the smallest moments in the movies. So when Hayoung shows up to join the film club, Seowoo – who’s not even sure what she herself is feeling – finds her heart skipping a beat.


After having finished reading Citrus, this is seriously like a breath of fresh air: a realistic, non-ecchi, slow-paced romance about girls over the age of 18. Nice!

A lot of people had already recommended this to me, so after feeling a little lost—seeing that Citrus had ended—I decided to finally go for it.

The story itself starts out a little slow, with the two main characters accidentally bumping into each other around school a few times. They are some cute encounters, but nothing super over-the-top that screams something along the lines of “a destined encounter”. Just two girls going to the same school, having the same interest, and often going a little too hard on drinks. Having said that, not a lot of things happen during the first 20 or so chapters. The girls simply get to know each other, and one way or another, at least one of them realizes that she might have feelings for the other.

It’s honestly such a pleasure to follow something that seems so natural, not at all forced, not at all over-sexualized, and not at all rushed. Seowoo even gets rejected the first time she tries her luck, but then finally embraces her feelings and just blurts out whatever comes to mind. The pace changes quite a bit after that.

blooming sequence manhwa

It’s still slow, at least compared to a lot of other yuri stories currently around, but that’s what makes it so cute and enchanting. The author seemingly doesn’t feel the need to add in an over-the-top sexual tension between the two, or moments we’re so used to from shoujo manga, like seeing sparks go off between the two girls when they accidentally touch or tropes like that. It’s all just so close to real-life that at times I wonder if the author is writing from personal experiences. I love it!

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They are so damn cute, too. 😛

The added drama feels realistic as well. Having your ex show up again in your life and totally having no idea how to handle it all, that’s just how life goes sometimes. Hell, even Hayoung’s ex actually seems like a nice person to me. She didn’t end up being this antagonist kind of character like she would have been in a lot of other works. Instead, Yi-hwa instead seems like a nice person who probably had her reasons for leaving Hayoung. I’m actually even torn, seeing how much she suffers from seeing Hayoung with someone else. It’s much deserved, but still a little sad, and I love how the story manages to present us this person—who did something so horrible to her girlfriend—as still someone we can actually like and feel for. That’s quite something!

Now, coming to the parts that I think could be improved, I’d say actually add some more sexual tension between Seowoo and Hayoung. Especially in the later chapters, we get a few scenes that, let’s say are a little more heated, but seeing that they have been together for quite a while, I think the author could even add a little more to it. Yeah, yeah, I know. I want the sex chapter again, but can you blame me? I don’t think so! 😛

Seeing that we’ve been introduced to Seowoo’s parents and her childhood friend now, I think we can expect some more drama to come, but I really hope the author sticks to the more realistic drama and doesn’t push it too far, since that’s what I see as one of the greatest aspects of the manhwa~

blooming sequence manhwa

Also, after reading Blooming Sequence, I’m totally down to have some Korean BBQ and drinks~

My rating so far:


Story: 9/10
Characters: 9/10
Art: 9/10
Yuri: 9.5/10
Total Enjoyment: 9/10


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19 thoughts on “Manhwa Review: Blooming Sequence by Lee Eul

  1. Thank you for posting this review! Have been meaning to read this for awhile now and your review has prompted me to do so tonight!

    I also really, (emphasis on REALLY) hope the Author can keep it grounded in a realistic and not overly dramatic plot. Without going on a rant here I really value the more long-ish, gentle, realistic approach to Yuri (and stories in general).

    Anyways thanks again! Reading time~~~ ^w^

    Liked by 3 people

      • Long reply incoming (sorry).

        True; after reading though I cannot help but have a sneaking suspicion that Seowoo’s parents might present a bigger obstacle than the “party” one. Having lived in Korea for a few years (including with my EX’s family for a time) I can say that they LOVE drama and gossip. I will also add the copious amount of drinking is actually real and I cannot recall the amount of times I got drunk living there. Refusing to drink is literally considered impolite and frowned upon.

        I was there for one day and everyone in the block already knew I was staying with them and talking about how unsafe it was having a “boy” (actually MtF trans but whatever) staying over with two girls. It was one of the craziest experiences of my life. Had a lot of fun as well but it does bring up a parallel to how hard it is to keep things a secret.

        This can be seen by the scene where they are in an elevator and for a moment worry about a security camera. A security camera you might think is harmless however, with the Koreans people know almost everyone in their respective “area”. As I demonstrated with my story/ experience. So that is why they worried for a moment, whoever was watching could’ve easily known them. It was a REALLY nice touch by the author and (to me) displayed a foreshadowing.

        The parents of both girls are actually also very well done (less so with Hayoung). It is very accurate that parents have almost 100% control over their family. Again every family is different but there is a general rule-book most follow. The main reason why my EX is an EX is because of this same issue. I also really enjoyed the author bringing up the whole Son being the more valuable business. Sadly this is true, although my EX only had a sister so there was no Son. Which brings up a “funny” story since her parents gave her a “male” name.

        Anyways as you can tell I really enjoyed this Manhwa immensely. It has a few low points and does fall into some traps of the genre but as a whole (so far) really REALLY displays the struggles of growing up in Korean society and more so being a part of LGBT. It is really sad and I urge everyone to do a little research on the often overlooked Korean social issues. Some of it will really open your eyes.

        Liked by 2 people

    • I think the drama is going to get overly dramatic soon enough, I don’t like the look of Seowoo’s Sister’s friend. She’s more of a danger to them then Haeyoung’s Ex, who I think hold’s a torch for her but I personally think misses her as a friend more. Could be wrong, but I see her loving the Director more, but the Director is just afraid to express her feelings to her young lover that she made a mistake of wanting it been a open relationship.

      I kind of see Seowoo’s friend been this couple’s major stumbling block. Even the little moment in Chapter 53 I think, that when she first meet’s Haeyoung. She mention’s straight away that it was her that chose Haeyoung’s birthday present, put me on red alert. Also the way she put’s down Seowoo, instead of offering encouragement to her. Not liking her at all. Also throw in Seowoo’s awful family, her older sister aside. I don’t see any love from them, so I could imagine them stopping at nothing to stop Seowoo from been Lesbian and shaming the family.

      That’s where I see it going. I definitely think they need to throw obstacles for their relationship and for them to go through some up’s and down’s before the ending. As long as we don’t get a dreaded time skip with the couple getting together again when they are older or tragic ending, then I be happy.

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  2. Can’t help but chuckle that you like how it’s not over-sexualized and then can’t wait for the sex scenes! 😛

    Yeah, it’s nice to change gears and enjoy a nice slow burn romance with low drama.
    While reading this I really liked watching them discover their feelings and how just comfortable they are with each other. I think I burned through the chapters just to find out just what WAS going to happen. Also, loved that confession scene when they finally do get together. 😀
    One thing that really caught my eye was how stylized all the clothing looked. Maybe because it’s all in color, but some of the outfits were really nice. 🙂

    Looking back, I notice the author included a self reference in chapter 4 (building):

    Liked by 1 person

  3. This will be long sorry about that.

    I have to say on a recent reading spree that Korea, China and Thailand are churning out some fantastic Yuri stories over the last few years and are overshadowing Japan. Stuff like Beloved, Lily Love, Sq Begin with Your Name, Love Doctor and Pulse come to mind, they take their time and it makes for more interesting stories. But Blooming Sequence so far has been my favourite, as it’s got it’s heart in the right place.

    Sure it’s pretty tame on the girl on girl action so far, but as long as the couple are massively likeable, the side characters interesting and story keeps on ticking along nicely that can be forgiven. Seowoo, is just such a nerdy likeable character you can’t help root for her, especially when you see her family life (although her older sister is the only one kind to her). Hayoung is every bit as likeable, I love that neither character are struggling with their sexuality and the only struggle they have is expressing their feelings to one another. Those two characters won me over straight away. Also I’m a bit of a film geek so I love the film nods and film club setting.

    I like the side story with Hayoung’s ex Childhood sweetheart, some might think she might be on to sabotage Hayoung/Seowoo relationship but I just don’t see it going that way. I think she feel’s more guilty for what she did to Hayoung and misses her as a friend, I could be wrong though. I think she’s in love with her older lover “The Director” (it’s obvious she’s not into her cause of her money or fame, seen as she pays her own way) but “The Director” screwed up by saying it’s a open relationship, when in fact both clearly are waiting for the other to commit to each other.

    I think the drama for Blooming Sequence is going to come from Seowoo’s side of things. I’m not liking Seowoo’s older sister’s friend, she’s clearly got a thing for Seowoo. But she’s the type that probably get married to keep her family happy, while keeping Seowoo as her plaything on the side. Anytime she’s around Seowoo, she’s trying to keep her under the thumb and in line. She’s so going to make things hell for Seowoo and Hayoung. She’s going to be the “villain” of this story.

    Also Seowoo’s family, I just don’t get a good feeling from them at all. Her Dad is a bully and along with the mother doesnt give a damn about her, throw in the fact they beat Seowoo as a kid. Her older sister seems to get along with her, but that could change. Her brother looks like a spoiled brat. I don’t see this having a happy ending for Seowoo and her family.

    So I read all 53 chapters, and am waiting to see what happens next. Fair play to Lee Eul, he doesn’t skimp on the story. And you get at least 30 pages most chapters or more. This is what I’m expecting to happen as we go on

    * Hayoung ex storyline to wrap up sooner rather then later, with both been friends and Her ex getting to together with the Director in a commited relationship

    * Seowoo and Hayoung to get it on lol. They’ve got too.

    * The main drama to come from Seowoo’s older sister’s friend, who won’t stop at nothing to get Seowoo all to herself. So expect Seowoo’s awful father to get involved. Also Seowoo and Hayoung to have a brief split.

    * Seowoo to disown her family at the end, and Hayoung and her to go live happily ever after.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I have to wholeheartedly agree to this.
      Over the past few years more and more absolutely stunning and awesome works has been popping up that don’t originate from Japan.

      Many, many of my favorite works right now are non-Japanese and I can see this trend continuing.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I’m inclined to agree regarding works originating out of Japan as well.
        I can’t really articulate why in a concise manner, but the heavier focus on adult characters is a big reason.

        Like

  4. Am I the only one that wants the Ex and Ha- Young to get back together? I believe it could still work out 😭 I think Ha- young heart is still open to Lee- Hwa and if she could be honest instead of always doubting what other feel about her something good could happen 🤔😁 I’m on chapter 66 and I like Seo- Woo and she’s finding her own self but i just don’t know I’m shipping Lee-Hwa and Ha- Young!

    Like

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