It took a few pages before I realized I’d seen the K-drama of this series. Though my mind drifted in the first few, before long, I was laughing out loud, and I could not stop. I love oddball characters with strength and fragility, as people are rarely one-note. Business Proposal Volume 1 is a laugh riot, a romantic comedy heavier on the comedic side, for which I am grateful.
By Narak, adapted by Perilla and original story by Haehwa, the manhwa deals with a misunderstanding blown out of hilarious proportion. Serialized in English by Yen Press, translated by Tapas Entertainment Inc., and lettered by Abigail Blackman, it centers on Hari Shin. In the first volume, you get fourteen chapters in gorgeous full-color illustrations to enjoy. Hari Shin’s life isn’t going well. Working is grinding her to exhaustion, the friend she loves trots out his latest partner, and she’s in debt. Somehow a marriage proposal makes it worse.
Business Proposal Volume 1 Nails The Com in RomCom
Workplace romcoms are a staple of many K-drama series. Manhwas deliver the same, like my recent review of the funny and promising What’s Wrong With Secretary Kim? While similar, Business Proposal has more laughs, gasps, and guffaws packed into its first volume. Plus, I love the mistaken identity hijinks that have four people in its snare. It’s constant laughter after Hari’s friend, Yeongsuh Jin, offers to pay Hari to pretend to be her for a forced matchmaking date. But that’s not all. Hari must ensure the prospective match rejects her.
To that end, Yeongsuh and Hari decide to go femme fatale—sexy clothing, lots of makeup, and a pink wig. Unfortunately, there are two problems with this plan. Hari’s date, Taemu Kang, made the decision, before meeting her, to marry whoever showed up on the date to stop his grandfather from setting up more dates. While this might sound extreme, his grandfather told Taemu he scheduled dates for the year. To Taemu, it’s expedient to marry so he can focus on work. The other issue for Hari, it turns out Taemu is the CEO of where she works.
The Stakes Feel High in This Comedy
Given Hari’s heard about Taemu Kang’s temperament regarding liars, she’s right to worry. Because she took out a loan to help her parents’ business, she’s working more and cannot afford to get fired. Thankfully, Hari looks drastically different with all the makeup and wig. The question is, when will Taemu realize she works at his company? He’s already met her twice at work. You know how it goes; when you want to avoid someone, they pop up everywhere. Her responses on their dates and his reactions left me howling; I could not stop laughing.
Stakes aren’t just high for Hari. After all, Yeongsuh’s father sets her up on marriage dates. He’s not going to be happy about this if he finds out. On top of that, Yeongsuh fell for Taemu’s assistant, aka right-hand man, Sunghoon Cha, and there are mix-ups here too. Yeongsuh and Sunghoon’s relationship is love at first sight. It’s a nice balance to the sidesplitting hysteria between Hari and Taemu.
Business Proposal Volume 1 is a go-to if you need to laugh and forget a hard day. While some confusion is solved and secrets revealed, there are heaps to foster laughs and possibly heart pangs later. Though most characters are not fleshed out, they make an impression, especially when interacting. The story flows, and the dialogue—and Hari’s inner thoughts—alongside the illustrations make Business Proposal Volume 1 perfect comic relief.