Shiroi Heya no Futari (白い部屋のふたり?, literally: Our White Room or Couple of the White Room), is a yuri manga by Ryoko Yamagishi, one of the Year 24 Group. It was first published by Shueisha in Ribon in 1971, making it one of the earliest shōjo yuri manga, and is the story of a romance between two girls at a prestigious all-girls school in France.
The orphaned Resine decides, against her aunt's wishes, to attend the same boarding school as her mother. She finds it difficult to fit herself into the life of the school. Resine must also share a room with Simone, the rebellious daughter of a famous actress. Simone does not make Resine feel welcome, and Simone takes advantage of every chance she gets to cause trouble. Simone goes out late with boys, copies Resine's homework, and teases Resine every time she cries. In spite of everything, the two girls become closer, although Resine cannot name the feeling.
The school puts on a production of Romeo and Juliet - Simone is quickly chosen to be Romeo, whilst Resine is chosen to be Juliet. Resine expresses some worry about having to kiss Simone, but she is told that she can pretend to kiss Simone. On stage, however, their kiss is "passionate - and real". After the play, Resine and Simone go into the woods, and kiss again. However, a girl who missed out on the role of Romeo saw them, and she begins to spread malicious gossip about the pair.
Resine tries to distance herself from Simone because of the gossip, and Simone tries to comfort her. First she tells Resine to ignore the gossip. Resine finds that impossible. Later, Simone takes Resine out on the town to find her a boyfriend. Resine throws her energies into dating her new boyfriend, and Simone becomes depressed. Simone and Resine have an argument. Resine runs away, going back to her aunt's house and becoming sick. Some months later, after recovering, Resine learns that Simone had died. She returns to the school to find out that Simone had incited one of her boyfriends to kill her. Resine swears to keep on living, forever loveless and alone.
Yukari Fujimoto regards Shiori Heya no Futari to have influenced works by Machiko Satonaka, Riyoko Ikeda, and Ichijo Yukari, becoming "prototypical" of a common yuri story in the 1970s and 1980s which Fujimoto dubs "Crimson Rose and Candy". Here, "Candy" is a femme character who admires "Rose," a more butch character. "Candy" and "Rose"'s attachment becomes the subject of rumours or even blackmail, even while "Candy" and "Rose" grow to acknowledge their relationship as being romantic. Rose dies "almost without fail" in order to protect "Candy" from scandal. James Welker regards these stories to contain elements of "lesbian panic". Welker presents Frederik Schodt's view that melodramatic endings were "common" in "early shoujo manga", but presents Fujimoto's suggestion that "patriarchal forces" were responsible for the tragic ending of the "Crimson Rose and Candy" stories.
- ↑ Brown, Rebecca (August 8, 2005). "An Introduction to Yuri Manga and Anime". AfterEllen.com. Retrieved 26 March 2010.
- ↑ Okazu:Yuri Manga: Shiroi Heya no Futari Review by Erica Friedman of Yuricon
- ↑ Welker, James (2006) "Drawing Out Lesbians: Blurred Representations of Lesbian Desire in Shōjo Manga" in Subhash Chandra e.d., Lesbian Voices: Canada and the World: Theory, Literature, Cinema pp.156-184 New Delhi: Allied Publishers Pvt. Ltd ISBN 81-8424-075-9
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