Baby and I
Baby and I (Japanese: 赤ちゃんと僕) is one of the representative works of Marimo Ragawa.
Takuya Enoki doesn’t have a mother. Takuya loses his mother in a car accident when he is only twelve years old, when he is in fifth grade. Takuya now lives with his father, Harumi, and his baby brother, Minoru. Takuya’s baby brother is only two years old, and a lot of caring is needed. Although Takuya is still a fifth grader, he cooks, cleans, sews, scolds, and does everything that is normally a mother’s job. Because he has more chores to work on and has to look after his baby brother, Takuya begins to feel a helpless gap between his friends who have fun everyday after school. Not only about school, but neighbors blame him for Minoru’s crying problem. His stress builds up gradually and bursts at a point, and he feels an uncontrollable hated towards Minoru, who is stressing him and taking up all his time.
One day, when Takuya picks Minoru up from preschool, he starts to walk in a pace that is too fast for Minoru. But soon, Takuya realizes what he has done and runs back. He finds Minoru with his eyes full of water, for a brutal dog was blocking Minoru’s way. Takuya dashes in full speed, and saves his little brother. When he finally arrives home and sees Minoru sobbing, he realizes that Minoru cries because he is just lonely, and becomes ashamed of himself. From then, Takuya learned to love his little brother as a family, and his long life story of being a mother and a brother at once begins.
As time pass by, Takuya Enoki gradually adapts to his role in the family. Some of his friends in school like Akihiro Fujii and Tadashi Gotoo, have little brothers and sisters that go to Minoru’s preschool, and are Minoru’s friends.
The detailed lifestyle of an elementary child is highly praised in many aspects. The feelings of people are observed very closely, and the realistic descriptions of Takuya’s life are one of the praised points in Marimo Ragawa’s comics. Not only the story’s plots and details, but the stable, clean drawings of her comics is also one of the attractive points. Therefore, Baby and I was honored with the 40th Shogaku-Kan Comic Award（第４０回小学館漫画賞）in 1995 and also, it was animated in 1996. Some other works of Marimo Ragawa include New York New York, Shanimuni-Go, and many more.
Baby and I is one of the best arts of Manga, and is surely one of the representatives of the Japanese comic.
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