“Father, I Don’t Want to Get Married!” is the adaptation of a web novel series by Hong Heesu titled “Appa, Na I Gyeolhon An Hallae-yo!” The manhwa, also known as “Father, I Don’t Want This Marriage,” was released in 2021 and is the collaborative work of Hong Heesu (story), along with Roal (art), Midnight Studio, Yuri, and CandleBambi. It delves into the themes of reincarnation, romance, and the cliché of being reborn as a villainess in a fantastical, historical setting.
In the narrative, Lady Jubelian Eloy Floyen is portrayed as an unloved yet lovestruck character, who is tragically framed for attempted murder. When a modern-day Korean woman finds herself reincarnated in Jubelian’s body, she strives to change her destiny, starting by breaking up with Mikhail, her love interest, to avoid a dreaded marriage to a cruel crown prince. The story unfolds as she navigates her new reality, forming a contract relationship to deter the arranged marriage.
The manhwa has been serialized on KakaoPage and has also been published in English digitally by Tappytoon. Although it follows a common ‘reincarnated as the villainess’ trope, readers have found it enjoyable, reflecting in its score of 7.63 on MyAnimeList and a ranking of #1,195 on Anime-Planet, indicating a favorable reception among its audience. The manhwa was published by C&C Revolution Inc. in book format, transitioning from its original webtoon format.
The series has not caused a major stir in the manga industry as it follows a well-trodden trope, but it has found its place among readers who appreciate the villainess reincarnation genre. Its comedic, dramatic, and romantic elements combined with fantasy appeal to readers seeking escapism within the romantic shoujo genre.
In “Father, I Don’t Want to Get Married!”, the story unfolds in a fantastical historical setting reminiscent of European nobility and royal intrigue. This world is described through the eyes of a modern-day Korean woman who finds herself reincarnated into the body of a villainess named Lady Jubelian Eloy Floyen. The society is heavily influenced by noble standings, royal titles, and an underlying tension of political marriages and engagements, setting the stage for the tale’s unfolding drama.
Lady Jubelian, initially depicted as a lovestruck noble clinging to her disinterested lover Mikhail and yearning for her indifferent father’s affection, finds her life spiraling into despair when she’s falsely accused of attempted murder. Upon the modern-day woman’s reincarnation into Jubelian’s body, the narrative takes a turn as she decides to take control of her fate, diverging from the original storyline that the world seems to follow.
The protagonist’s main goal is to avoid a dreaded marriage to the bloodthirsty crown prince, Maximillian Casein Assiette, who her father considers as a suitable match following her breakup with Mikhail. To achieve this, she proposes a contract relationship with her father’s student, Max, aiming to deter the arranged marriage and change her predetermined villainess fate. This sets the stage for a tale filled with humor, romance, and the challenges of overcoming a fate set in stone, all while navigating the intricacies and expectations of nobility in a world bound by tradition and royal decree.
Her primary challenges involve breaking free from the shackles of her predestined narrative as a villainess, navigating the social intricacies of nobility, and forming alliances that could help her rewrite her story. Through these challenges, the protagonist endeavors to carve a different path for herself, one that strays from the tragic end awaiting the original Jubelian, and explores themes of self-determination, love, and the clash between modern sensibilities and historical tradition.
Each character plays a significant role in unraveling the narrative, with their relationships and interactions adding layers to the story. The unique aspect of reincarnation and the modern-day knowledge it brings to a historical setting sets the protagonist apart, driving the story forward as she challenges the status quo and strives for a different ending to her tale.
- Lady Jubelian Eloy Floyen (Protagonist):
- Jubelian is a noble lady who initially is depicted as desperate for affection from her lover and father. However, with the reincarnation of a modern-day woman into her body, she becomes more assertive and determined to change her fate. Her unique attribute is her modern-day knowledge and sensibilities which she employs to navigate through the complexities of her new world.
- Mikhail Hessen:
- Initially Jubelian’s lover, Mikhail is a character who seems disinterested in her. The dynamics change when Jubelian decides to break up with him to avoid further complications following her false accusation of attempted murder.
- Regis (Jubelian’s Father):
- As a noble, Regis’s main concern is to find a suitable match for Jubelian, especially after her breakup with Mikhail. His relationship with Jubelian is strained, showing indifference towards her which is a source of Jubelian’s initial desperation for affection.
- Maximillian Casein Assiette (Crown Prince):
- Known as a bloodthirsty crown prince, Maximillian becomes a potential suitor for Jubelian as per her father’s arrangement. He is depicted as a sadistic tyrant, making him the least desirable match for Jubelian, and thus she devises a plan to avoid marriage with him.
- Max (Father’s Student):
- Max becomes an ally for Jubelian as she proposes a contract relationship with him to deter her marriage to Maximillian. The nature of their relationship evolves as they collaborate to navigate through the royal intrigues and the expectations of nobility.
- Modern-day Korean Woman (Reincarnate):
- The unnamed modern-day Korean woman is the essence of change in Jubelian’s life. Her reincarnation into Jubelian’s body brings a fresh perspective and the determination to change the narrative, making Jubelian a stronger and more proactive character.
“Father, I Don’t Want to Get Married!” taps into the popular trope of reincarnation and the villainess narrative within the manga/manhwa industry. This trope has garnered a substantial following, offering readers a blend of fantasy, historical settings, and a modern-day perspective that challenges traditional norms. The manhwa is a part of a growing genre that explores the idea of changing one’s fate, self-determination, and the clash between modern sensibilities and traditional or predetermined roles, which resonates with readers who enjoy seeing characters take control of their destinies in a whimsical yet challenging setting.
In the broader context, this manhwa, like others of its genre, provides a canvas for exploring themes of empowerment, the questioning of societal expectations, and the imaginative blend of modern-day awareness in a historical, fantastical world. It adds to the diverse narrative styles and storytelling innovation within the manga/manhwa industry, contributing to the genre’s appeal and growth.
For readers, “Father, I Don’t Want to Get Married!” offers a narrative filled with humor, romance, and the whimsical charm of a protagonist striving to rewrite her story against all odds. It’s a delightful read for those who enjoy character-driven stories with a blend of fantasy and historical drama. The manhwa also offers an opportunity to delve into a genre that challenges traditional narratives and explores the humorous and romantic possibilities that come with breaking free from a predestined villainous role. Through engaging characters and a captivating plot, readers can find a blend of escapism, self-reflection, and entertainment in this imaginative tale.