What It Takes to be a Villainess: A Review


By: Peggy Sue Wood | @peggyseditorial – Series suggested by: @stormyheart326

Writer’s note: It’s been a LONG time since this series was suggested, and I’m sorry about that. However, it’s finally here! So, let’s jump in!

What is there to say about this series? 

It’s kind of a model of its sub-genre for being reborn into the villainess role–an industry standard, so to speak, regarding the plot. We have a girl vs. girl in which the former “good-girl” is secretly a villain, and our protagonist–the former public villainess who’s been replaced by a good-person–is seen reforming her ways as she fights against her counterpart through a courtly drama. We have a boy (a royal of some kind) that is antagonistic to our leading lady, then sees her kinder side and starts to fall for her. We have the classic ordeals of finding spies and dispelling rumors of infidelity as well (in addition to other well-known sub-plot tropes). Had this series been older, I might have thought that it was a forerunner to the popular tropes of the genre that we see consistently used throughout this series and others of the genre. However, the story seems to have started publishing in 2018 (according to Baka-Updates Manga), so that cannot possibly be the case. 

Given its feeling of being “standard,” I can’t say that the story particularly stands out to me. Nothing about the world’s magic, the story’s plot, or character design is particularly of note even though I’m a little over 100+ chapters in, which puts me in a strange position regarding recommendations. 

You see, this series is probably perfect for anyone interested in seeing what’s expected in the genre. It’s trope-y nature and well-worn plot, as well as the slow pacing, make it great to introduce this kind of story to someone looking to get a feel for this particular sub-genre of Isekai. At the same time, however, it’s not very interesting to someone like me who has probably seen these various plots and subplots done 20+ times with faster pacing, more focus or drama, and energy. 

Mind you–it’s not a bad story. It has cute moments, and certainly a bit of comedy. There are moments of fluff as the love story develops, and you can tell while reading that the author and artist are trying to make the courts-politics more exciting and present. Regardless, it still doesn’t pique my interest as much as I was hoping it would. 

Would I recommend this series? 

If you have a friend interested in learning more about the genre or want a good model to compare another story in this subgenre, then I would recommend reading this series. As I stated, it’s not a bad story. The writing is solid, the progression makes sense, and the art is pretty good, showing an excellent use of complementary colors. The characters are likable, and even the villains seem to have motivations behind their actions. So, again, it’s not bad at all–just pretty much a standard work of the subgenre. I think something to appreciate about this series is that, even though it’s not incredibly exciting, it is long and still updating. That itself should be a sign of how solid the work is despite the various plots and subplots being unoriginal.

The series is legally licensed on TappyToon.com, which you can check out here: https://www.tappytoon.com/en/comics/villainess

Thank you to @stormyheart326​ for suggesting this series! I hope this review wasn’t too disappointing, and (again) I’m sorry for the long wait. 

If you would like to submit a post of your own, pitch an idea, or suggest a topic, please use our ask box (link: https://theanimeview.com/ask). 

Well, I’ll see you all next Saturday with another post!Well, I’ll see you all next Saturday with another post!

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