Kyutaro Horikita, the tall, dark and handsome cleaning expert of Kurokado High, is about to meet a sleeping maiden at the school: transfer student Fumi Nishioka! Fumi’s going to learn how to rid the school of nasty spirits with Kyutaro’s help, and her heart will surprisingly be “cleansed” too…!
In the old campus of their school, a mysterious room has a door that beckons Fumi, even though she shouldn’t even be able to see it! Kyutaro goes in after her, but will he be able to save her before she gets devoured by otherworldly creatures?
QQ Sweeper is a darling little manga.
And oddly enough, it’s perfectly timed with my life, seeing as I’m going through the KonMari method of tidying, and this manga is basically people who quite literally clean the troubles out of a person’s heart.
I absolutely adore the concept! I’m a little disappointed I can’t write my own story like this. There’s so much you could do with this!
The first volume does a good job setting up the world and the characters we’re going to be following. We only cover one case, but because it serves as the reader’s learning case as well as establishing the character’s personalities, I’m fine with it. It’s on the simple side, but first cases usually are, aren’t they?
In any case, let me elaborate on the world and the process of sweeping:
If you’ve ever heard of or read about Jungian psychology, there’s a concept called “collective unconsciousness”, that, at its extreme simplistic meaning, means all of our unconscious minds are connected. So despite not meeting you, dear reader, our minds are connected! //waves// Hello from the other sideeeeeeeeeeee
sorry, sorry, I can’t resist my asides >>;;
This manga takes that concept literally, and using a portal found in an old school building, the characters are able to enter the collective unconscious. This manifests as a series of doors. These doors lead directly to your mind, which is housed in a room.
When the person is full of negative thoughts and anxiety, this room is dirty and becomes infested with bugs. These bugs vary in size depending on how long the feelings have festered and are quite aggressive. The sweeper’s task is twofold — clean the room of the mind and vanquish the vermin inside.
The two leads are Kyutaro Horitaka, sweeper, and Fumi Nishioka, normal schoolgirl (at first). Fumi sort of worms her way into Kyutaro’s life by first stumbling on the room that houses the portal door and secondly becoming employed by his family as a maid.
Fumi is an orphaned child with no immediate family. She’s also bounced from place to place her entire life. The family she was staying with abandoned her at the beginning of the story, so she ends up sleeping at the old schoolhouse. She has a natural knack for seeing the other realm and sort of “feeling” the things sweepers can, even though she doesn’t know what it is. The Horitaka household currently has a mansion with only three people living in it — Kyutaro, “Granny”, and Koichi Kitagawa, a sort of jack-of-all-trades that serves as a psychologist, school principal, school chairman and other things… It’s hard keeping the mansion clean. Kyutaro wakes up at 4am to start cleaning things before school, even. So having a maid helps a lot, and seeing as Fumi is naturally inclined to be a sweeper… Well, you see where this is going, right? Hahaha.
On the human realm end, having things dirty attract the bugs to you and sweepers are more susceptible to bugs due to their connection to that other realm, so Kyutaro spends most of his day cleaning. He’s known as a sort of cleaning freak, actually. Emphasis on the freak part. But what I really enjoyed about his character is how sensitive he is. He acts a little brutish, but he’s a super softy and rather afraid of being alone. Those private moments we’re given a glimpse into are so sweet.
Fumi is energetic, positive, and rather brash. She’s assertive and honest. She also has an obsession about becoming “Cinderella” and landing a rich husband. She even keeps a notebook of potential “Prince Charming” with details about every little thing. It’s the sort of thing that’s really weird and stalker-ish in real life, but in the form of this manga it’s a funny ongoing joke.
The art is on the simple side and as a result gives a clean feeling. Motomi sure does love the blush lines, though! The characters always have a little pink to their cheeks! Not that I mind, it gives it a sense of innocence. The facial expressions are well done. There’s a lot of emotion and thought conveyed in the close up/still scenes, of which there are a lot. I rather enjoyed looking at the gorgeous characters (lbr, in shoujo manga all characters are gorgeous hahaha)
The comedy scenes are plentiful and actually pretty funny. I love love love the goofy expressions. They’re a nice break from the serious nature of a sweeper.
Fumi and Kyutaro are set up as the obvious couple, and there’s quite a few budding of a romance scenes, so if you like that sort of thing like I do, you’ll love it.
So far this is a good introduction novel with promise of a unique and fun shoujo series. We’ll have to see as the manga goes along to have a better outlook on whether it realizes the potential of the concept, but as is, I enjoyed it and look forward to future volumes.
My heart scale is defined as follows – 5 hearts = a story everyone will fall in love with, regardless of preferences; 4 hearts = a well-done story that people who love the concept will adore, and people who don’t may end up liking it; 3 hearts = if you like this type of story or this type of hero, then you will enjoy this, but those who do not like either of those things will probably not; 2 hearts = it had potential, it squandered it; 1 heart = just a waste of time from the get-go; 0 hearts = why was this made?
Ugh, it’s so hard doing this with licensed manga! It’s not like I can screencap like otome games or quote from books… I can either look for illegal scans or I can take photos… which is what I did. They’re not the best quality (I didn’t want to ruin my book flattening it for pictures) but they give you a good idea of what’s inside, I suppose.
This is from the first chapter and gives a good example of what I meant by “slow close-ups” and wacky comedy.