Running on Empty

I stumbled upon this by browsing through the archives of the Shounen Ai genre where I read most of my manga.

  • Mangaka: Kim Jea-eun
  • Genre: Drama, Romance, Shounen Ai
  • Chapters: 12
  • Status: Complete
  • Release Date: 2008
  • Anime adaption: No
  • Kanji: 허공의 질주


Image result for running on empty mangaHan Soo-bum has contemplated suicide and has finally decided to go through with it. His death seems to be the answer to his problems and he has nothing to lose. How hard can it possibly be to kill himself? Standing on the edge of a building ready to jump when he is distracted by a guy taking photos of him from the building across the road. Annoyed he goes to confront they guy and unwittingly gets himself abducted by the hot guy who running from the law after being falsely accused of murder. Not overly concerned with dying, Han Soo-bum accompanies his would-be kidnapper.

My Thoughts:

As per the norm I dived in without looking at the description. I just wanted a short read and at only 12 chapters this fit the bill. I was pleasantly surprised with the art work and colouring.

The plot had so much going for it. Their names were only revealed in the fifth chapter, so basically only halfway through. Which strengthened the fact that these two really are strangers who happened to cross each others paths.

Han Soo-Bum’s backstory I felt was rather meh, I had expected a bit more of a tragic story (perhaps I am rather morbid) but his did not seem to really back up his reasoning for wanting to commit suicide. I rather got behind Lee’s messed up history and how he ended up doing all that he has and why he now wants to be free.

This gave a whole new meaning to a ‘different look’ before and after a shave with Lee. After such a drastic change it took years off of him revealing a much younger person than what had originally been thought.

The struggle between the desire to remain together and leave Han behind was clearly evident with Lee. He did not want to get Han involved with his mess. He even took the chance to leave but could not follow through and went back only to find that Han had cut his hand. Then later after Han’s life was really threatened did Lee leave him behind leaving Han with all of his undeveloped photos.

I wish they had delved deeper into the relationship of Lee Hyuk Soo and Han Soo Bum. Although there are hints at it being more than just a case of close friends but then again there is not much to suggest that may be the case. Having more information would really have been nice. Although having it left to your own thoughts is nice in its own way. In my own personal opinion, I think that they are merely really close friends. They have both saved each other and they do have a close bond but I do not think that it is romantically inclined.

The ending was rather weak and seemed forcibly rushed. If I was pressed I would also say poorly thought through. There is no reasoning behind the sudden confession given or the change of heart of our only seen ‘bad guy’. It was if the mangaka had written themselves into a corner and could not think of a way out, or if the storyline did not go according to the original plan and thus was forced to go in another direction.

On the whole, I enjoyed this but the ending did damage the enjoyment and left me wondering what had the original plot layout been.

Have you read this? Will you read it? I would love to know your thoughts in the comments below!

Running on Empty Manga Review


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