Summary: Fine Sometimes Rain is a slice of life comic drawn in the style of a classic Manga. The lead character in the comic is Georgia, a freelance artist struggling with crippling anxiety and depression. The majority of the story revolves around her childhood friends (primarily her best friend, Rita) attempting to lift her spirits, and around Georgia’s relationship with a man named Jun, who she meets upon moving into the house left to her by her recently deceased grandmother.
Story: The first thing that must be said about Fine Sometimes Rain is that this is not a normal feel-good story. There is humor. There are even high points, happy moments; but, the overall tone of the work is somber. It is not, inherently, an upbeat story. However, as someone who also struggles with a great deal of anxiety and depression, I found it very therapeutic. For myself, at very least, the portrayal of depression in this comic was spot on. It’s nice to see in any media, but especially in a form that’s close to my heart. So many times creators attempt to tackle the subject of mental illness without truly understanding it. The crude approximations and the inevitable “resolutions” to them typically end up more disheartening than anything else. This webcomic, however, hits the nail right on the head. It doesn’t shrug off mental illness as a temporary mindset, or as something that can be overcome if you just believe in yourself hard enough. It shows just how dark, how deep it gets, and then, it shows that there can be bright moments despite it.
As far as quality, Fine Sometimes Rain is written well. There are places that the dialogue is a bit clunky, but not so bad as to distract from the overall work. The pacing is steady, though perhaps a bit slow for some readers. I feel that this pace fits the overall tone of the work, however, and really invests the reader in Georgia’s hardships. The only real flaw is that it is somewhat predictable. It’s not hard to anticipate the roles that most characters are going to play shortly after they’re introduced, and it causes them to feel a bit cliche. But all in all, they’re well written cliches. They’re not breaking the mold, but they’re not bringing the story down either.
Art: Amy Stoddard’s art in Fine Sometimes Rain is very nice, and definitely reminiscent of Japanese comics. The techniques hearken back to Manga classics while the style carries its own unique elements. The way that Amy draws body language is quite refreshing, though expressions are sometimes lacking in definition. Scenery is a strong point for the comic, and rich in detail for something created in purely black and white. The page layouts are nice, and carry a good deal of variety. Word bubble placement is something that could be improved upon. There were places where I misunderstood a scene because I read it out-of-order, typically because a word bubble on the right hand side was only marginally higher than the left, but was intended to be read first in the scene.
Conclusion: Overall, Fine Sometimes Rain is a little slow and predictable, but very enjoyable. It is a unique angle on a classic story, and should appeal to fans of slice of life Anime. The website is easy to navigate, and there’s loads of content there to read with the seventh chapter nearly completed. I would recommend anyone give this comic a shot just to see if it clicks with them. It may not end up being your thing, but I don’t think that you will regret it even if it’s not.