The month has just started, and following the last few month’s deluges of welcoming, intriguing, and downright odd news concerning 2D media making its way to live-action, we have yet another surprising live-action announcement to make.
In a recent press release from Japan’s ABC channel, it was announced that the manga Harem Marriage, created by mangaka Nozomi Osaka, a.k.a Non, would be receiving a live-action adaptation in January 2022. This news comes as a bit of a shock, seeing as Harem Marriage’s story is centered around a woman used to monogamy adapting to a polygamous marriage. While the manga itself still leans on harem manga tropes to get the story going, it’ll be interesting to see how the live-action version adds to or reframes the usual anime idea of polygamy. While harem tropes are still super popular in anime and manga, the closest the industry has gotten to “normal man just manages to have multiple spouses in a marriage built on love and respect” is Tengen Uzui from Demon Slayer.
It’s also interesting to see this kind of subject matter outside of the Western idea of polygamy. While the Western media’s idea of polygamy also leans largely towards the “man has several attractive wives” trope, the rise of reality TV and polygamy’s connection to certain religious sects with a history of allowing marriage between adult men and underage girls have heaped sensationalism and scandal on polygamy.
Harem Marriage will be directed by Takashi Ninomiya (Laid-Back Camp) and Kana Yamada (The Naked Director), with Yamada also acting as scriptwriter. A cast list has yet to be released.
Even if Harem Marriage doesn’t manage to capture the complex reality of a polygamous relationship, there’s no denying the manga has managed to become quite popular. Running from 2014 through 2019, the 19 volume series circulated over 2.6 million copies and has been localized digitally by Kodansha. The synopsis for Harem Marriage is as follows:
The man Koharu loved wasn’t cheating on her…he was cheating on his wife with her! And not only that…he was the third guy in a row to do so. Dejected, she leaves Tokyo for her hometown, and rejects a future of love and marriage for a simpler life. But things have changed — her parents are struggling, the cafê they ran is closed, and a creepy man keeps following her around. She thinks this may be it for her, until she learns that her hometown has allowed polygamous marriage, and she’s in that man’s sights as his third wife!
Source: Anime News Network