Welcome my friends, to another Friday where I ramble about a BL title I enjoyed. Today’s pick is from an artist I dearly love; they have 3 works that are translated into English, one being currently released. But fear not, Playtime with Hakdo is a full-color, completed series that’s just perfect for a weekend binge session. Enjoy ~
Title: Playtime with Hakdo
Author & Artist: AM
Status: Completed, 49 chapters. R-rated only.
Where to read: On Lezhin!
Grad school sure is hard on Sangho. And the only time where he can smoke, relax and take his mind off of things on the rooftop getting ruined because of some random guy sucks big time. Can he maybe choose another faculty? Just when Sangho goes out to get him a drink and make him stop sighing like a machine every second, he ends up witnessing something… interesting. This stranger is arguing with an ex-boyfriend, who is coincidentally also Sangho’s ex-ex-ex-boyfriend.
This ex of both Sangho and Hakdo isn’t the only man they shared, apparently. They go to the bar where Sangho occasionally helps as a cross-dressing waiter, the two go through their lists of exes and don’t miss the chance to trash talk the common men they’ve dated. After spending time talking about their respective sex lives, Sangho and Hakdo realize their meeting might be a sign from the above because it looks like, maybe not the planets, but their kinks have aligned for them to be together. So they ask the important question, why don’t we just hit the bed and see how it goes?
Playtime with Hakdo was the first work I started reading from AM but Sexless and Wouldn’t It Be Nice? are also equally gripping, well-written, and fun. AM always manages to give their works a more natural and down-to-earth touch, doesn’t shy away from diverging from the usual tropes or archetypes, all the while keeping the story fresh and interesting. Wouldn’t It Be Nice? is currently serializing but I’ll surely look forward to anything this artist would throw my way in the future!
One of the highlights of this series for me was that Sangho and Hakdo are both experienced in bed and have tried lots of different things before with different partners. They are open to exploring and aren’t strictly a top or a bottom. To give a bit of context; Japanese and Korean fandoms are very specific and passionate, to put it mildly, about their ships and who tops and who bottoms. That’s why the order of the ship names (as in Naruto x Sasuke/NaruSasu or Sasuke x Naruto/SasuNaru) matters to them a lot. This is also the reason why the main couples who switch aren’t as popular compared to Western fandoms. As I always say, I look for variety and enjoy couples who love switching or trying things in bed, sometimes failing or hitting the nail on the head. In that manner, Playtime with Hakdo felt like someone had asked my preferences, and AM delivered just that.
Contrary to their animated and colorful hook-up and sex life, both Sangho and Hakdo have that one person that occupies a space in their minds, both for good and bad reasons. For Sangho, it’s the pushy upperclassman in the faculty and the person he followed to grad school, who is now in the States. For Hakdo, it’s Doochi, his long-time best friend and secret crush. Sangho knows about Doochi, and with the upperclassman’s return to Korea, Hakdo learns about him later on as well. However, both continue to casually hook up and spend time together because they enjoy each other’s company. How cool is that! And the situation is not written off as “I am only using you as a replacement,” but they genuinely enjoy being with each other.
There’s a lot to love in Playtime with Hakdo‘s casual and interesting approach to sex, kinks, and relationships. It’s one of those series where you have to experience to know the real deal but hopefully, I was able to paint a somewhat intriguing picture that did service to this lovely title. If you are looking for a mid-length, completed series that’s fun and steamy, AM’s Playtime with Hakdo might be the manhwa you’re looking for. As always, I’d like to hear your opinions or joyous screams so let me know if you have something on your mind you’d like to share, and see you next week!
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