criminale: strong premise, fun characters, partially soured by some bad taste

if you've read a cringe ecchi before you know what you're getting into

Have you ever heard of the manga Criminale!? Probably not, because it seems like it had a fairly small following, and it ended after 35 chapters. The concept sounds like a lot of fun: the protagonist, Tamito Ichimura, is a 'natural born victim'; wherever he goes, he is the preferred target for criminals. He has been kidnapped, mugged, and attacked all throughout his life, and has learned to protect himself from these people. And then he ends up getting tossed headfirst into a class full of student criminals trying to amend their behavior. I would liken it to a mix between BNHA, Assassination Classroom, and Baka and Test.

It's a perfectly servicable manga, with a few good gags every once in a while. But the obscene amount of assault jokes - ESPECIALLY in the first few chapters - really sours the rest of the series for me. One of the characters in the class, Momozono Momoka, is entirely based around the fact that she sexually assaults others - that is her 'crime,' like the arsonist character and the stalker, among others. These scenes are played for comedy and fanservice, treated like other wacky hijinks, and she gets away with it for being a girl. I'm willing to look past some off-color jokes if I find the majority of a series enjoyable, but in this case, I'm pretty :/ at her

The rest of the class is pretty engaging, though. There's a hitman named Sarah, who continuously tries to kill the protagonist; two sisters, that are an arsonist and an explosives expert; the son of a yazuka boss that just wants to bake sweets, to name a few. They really did have the basis for a lot of funny stuff set up (besides Momoka...). That being said, the standout character is Komori Hinako. She is a perfectly sweet and average girl... and also the protagonist's stalker, to the absurd extent that she makes soup out of Polaroid photos of him. I think the funniest part about her is that she is 100% aware that what she does is freakish, and she succumbs to her horror and embarrassment as soon as she comes back to her senses.

In fact, the only reason I ever even found out about this manga is because I saw this panel of her and I absolutely lost it, so I went looking for the source:

Honestly, Criminale is pretty good, if you just skim past all the boobies/panty shots/Momoka parts. I saw somebody comment that it would have made a perfect 12-episode 'seasonal garbage' kind of show, and I have to agree wholeheartedly. The premise really is golden; it's kind of a shame that it ended so soon. Apparently the author had health problems during its run, which is why it's so short. The art style is also really cute, and the comedic timing of visual gags is pretty good. It came out in 2015 but feels more like something from 2005-2008. The second half of the story switches to an ongoing plot surrounding a new character. I actually liked the second half quite a lot, even if it suffers from being rushed.

tl;dr: Criminale is a short read with an interesting premise and fun characters, though the excessive nudity and use of assault as a punchline is a downside for me. If you've got an hour or two, and you like wacky harem hijinks, you would probably get some mileage out of it. It's a bit rushed and it's nothing exceptional, but it's an option if you need something to occupy your time.

And now the reason I sat down to write this in the first place: dumping Hinako panels that I like. Yandere characters and characters that get supremely embarrassed by their crushes are like two of my favorite tropes lol. I only read the manga so I could get screencaps of her