The Yaoi Crate: worth it, and shivering with anticipation for more

What a time to be back to reviewing! If you haven’t read my latest personal blog post, the biggest take away is that: my exam is over, I passed unconditionally, and now I’m back on my grind💪🏾 And as I teased a few weeks ago, my first official review back is for the new and illustrious Yaoi Crate!

Gonna get on an emotional soap box for a second: I’ve been following Yaoi Crate from the beginning, and so to see them grow to where they are now (1K followers in such a short time🥳) has been such an awesome experience, and I’m ecstatic that so many people took a chance. And as I knew, the lovely folks at Yaoi Crate more than delivered!

So, unlike previous reviews, I made more defined parameters for rating and did

  • Overall presentation
  • Doujinshi—their overall presentation as well as their individual rating
  • Drama CD
  • Merchandise

Also, if you wanna see my live unboxing videos, check this instagram highlight

(I was not paid, nor sponsored for this review)

Presentation—10.0/10.0

Some people asked Yaoi Crate early on if the box would be themed, which they said “not at this time.” So imagine my surprise seeing the Halloween themed inside of the box! And not just that, the bed of rose petals mixed with the styrofoam was icing on the cake!

Each item was clearly packaged with care, and I can’t believe the team at Yaoi Crate and their parent company Kinboshi Goods put all this together so quickly! Really above and beyond my expectations which were already so high! I’m even more excited for the next few boxes and what they’ll look like on the inside, as well as what the contents will be (idea: the box has whatever featured couple eating food off each other for November👀)

Doujinshi—8.5/10.0

I’m still relatively new to do the doujinshi scene, but was pleasantly surprised at the quality of the works Magenta Dreaming and Psychopath and the Killer (licensed by Yaoi Crate’s partners for this month’s box, Rotten Blossoms). As any nerd, I love all things stationary related, so things like paper quality I pay attention to. The quality of these doujinshi is just… chef’s kiss! The cover art, the glossy smoothness of each page, and the artwork by both Hoshino-sensei and Hori-sensei are immaculate. Truly works of art!!! My only complaint in their presentation is that they weren’t wrapped in some tissue to prevent any bending that might occur during the shipping process.

I also really appreciated the info card provided with the content warning tags for both titles, a feature carried over from Rotten Blossom’s site!

Psychopath and the Killer—7.5/10.0

I’d actually been wanting to read Psychopath and the Killer for a while, and so it’s awesome that I not only get to read it finally, but that I have it in print! And it was worth the wait🤩

This dj is the shorter of the two, which might contribute to my biggest critique: I was very confused while reading. And I read the dj a few times! I feel like there’s some back story that I’m missing because I found myself unsure about who these two men are. But on the flip side, it’s made me even more curious about these two, and I hope that Bori-sensei plans to release more related works of these two spicy boys!

That being said, there were funny moments to accompany the spicy, intimate ones that made Psychopath and the Killer an enjoyable read. The emotions between Sigurd and Kairi are fraught with tension and longing, but also a (somewhat twisted) kind of love that clearly came through each scene. For those that enjoyed Takarai-sensei’s work Ten Count, you’ll definitely love these two😈

Also of the two dj, Psychopath and the Killer is uncensored😳

Magenta Dreaming—8.0/10.0

If you’re not a fan of Saiki K, one of the greatest gag series ever, then this dj might sway you! I can say that I was not expecting one of the two prints included would be a Saiki K fiction, but🥵

My hang up with this dj is due to personal preference: I don’t care for the ship that Hoshino-sensei chose. If I had to ship Saiki with anyone… I actually don’t really ship him with anyone; he gives off this sexless/aromantic vibe. But if I was pressed to ship him with someone it would probably be… Kaidō.

Regardless, Hoshino-sensei did a superb job of sticking to the characterization of both characters, though Saiki was naturally a tad more emotional than he is in the series. Like when I started reading, and after confirming that these two characters were indeed from Saiki K (it says the ship on the cover, but to be fair, I am well overdue for an eye doctor appointment), I found myself drawn into their relationship and agreed with the overall dynamic between Saiki and Reita.

I don’t read the manga, and if you don’t either but watch the anime, there might be a spoiler(?). The spoiler though does a good job to contextualize their relationship (which I needed considering not a fan of the ship). And it’s always been my dream to have in English (even better that it’s in PRINT) dj for a series/fandom that I’m a part of. Who knows, Hoshino-sensei might get me on the SaikixReita train🌝 (also maybe one day I’ll have a KuroGami dj in English and in print as well👁)

Halloween Nights: A WINGS Drama CD—9.0/10.0

So the drama CD was the item I anticipated the most. Spoiler alert, but I knew about it’s existence ahead of time so I’ve been twiddling my thumbs waiting to hear this gem. And it did not disappoint!

Like with dj’s, I’m still new to drama CD’s. But, I feel that Dreamy Snacks (UPDATE: Dreamy Snacks is for otome media, so it’s content is female oriented/for female self-insert purposes; the BL content will be released specifically under Rotten Blossoms), the other partner on this month’s Yaoi Crate, did a magnificent job in introducing international audiences to what drama CD’s are.

My first critique is minor: I WANT MORE😫 It felt much shorter than I thought it would be, but I’m not sure if that’s a feature of drama CD’s. Like, I need more of these characters ASAP or I will be very, very sad (looking at you Rotten Blossoms and Sakura-sensei). The second critique is also minor and part of one of things that I actually really appreciated about this drama CD: the subtitles. Sometimes it was difficult knowing who was who, but I was able to figure it out after a few seconds of confusion.

Which transitions to me to what I loved about the drama CD!

For the subtitles, once I got the hang of them, I greatly appreciated them! I don’t mind listening to Japanese though I am nowhere near fluent (I can readily recognize about 10 words), so I wasn’t expecting to be able to understand the contents without some additional help. Therefore the subtitles were the best gift I could have asked for. I liked how they were also color coordinated to the characters based off the character sheet! It helped me work through the confusion of who was who.

I also liked that for some of the audio tracks there was more than one image associated with the audio (track 2 is an example?). It added more to the experience and it almost felt like I was watching an anime.

The voice actors and overall production of the audio went beyond any possible expectation I could have had, and the bonus material was also so cute! I highly recommend listening to the bonus tracks first because they serve as a good introduction😏

Though the email from Dreamy Snacks caused some to panic, I appreciated them sending us a digital download version as well. That’s what we call knowing your audience (though a warning would have been helpful lol).

Merchandise: 10.0/10.0

Like having sprinkles on ice cream!

The pin is designed perfectly (shoutout to my senpai), and makes me wanna get an itabag even more! For now, I’ll have to settle for staring on it on my bookshelf and occasionally holding it in my hands😫

The keychains are so cute (and apparently have a protective film over them)! The sparkly, chibi overload any fujin needs🥰 The clips are also unique for keychains, and I think it’ll hold up well for those that might be a little… tough on daintier items🌚

I include the box in this category because the art launches it into the realm of merchandise, it’s so well done! I’m gonna run out of room if all the boxes have cool inner designs😫

Overall… I love the Yaoi Crate and can’t wait until my future crates get here! Even though I haven’t been a fujo for long, when I first stepped on the scene, I couldn’t help but long for such a thing as the Yaoi Crate. So seeing a Twitter account suddenly pop up on my TL only a few months later felt like a direct answer to my wish!

I also have on good authority that this is just the tip of the iceberg for all of these growing companies, so make sure to keep an eye out (best way to do so is following them on social media and subscribing to their website(s) which I’ve kindly linked throughout my review🤗)

October’s Yaoi Crate: 9.5/10.0

It’s good to be back, and to come back celebrating a big win for the fujin community. I’ve met so many people in this community that go beyond mutuals and it feels good to be truly present at such an exciting time for us all (despite how the things going on in the world might make us feel).

As always,

2 thoughts on “The Yaoi Crate: worth it, and shivering with anticipation for more

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