There will be spoilers for the manhwa series Lick Me, Like Me.
Trigger Warning: There may be references to cheating, kidnapping, power imbalance, violence, death, parentification, threats of murder and suicide, illness, blood, car accident, public scandals, sexual assault, dubious consent, gossip, manipulation, and blackmail, as it appears in the manhwa.
Jooin is a popular veterinarian, but not just for his veterinary skills. He is also very beautiful, which helps draw in plenty of customers. His life as a vet is fulfilling, but his love life is seriously lacking, though not for lack of trying. Unfortunately, Jooin's last relationship didn't end so well when he discovered his boyfriend was cheating and only using Jooin for his money. Still, Jooin longs for real love. In the meantime, he takes in an abandoned puppy and kitten and showers them with all the love he longs to receive for himself someday.
Everything is going just fine with his puppy and kitty, even after they've become full-grown. Jooin looks forward to coming home to them each day, a far cry from what life was like before he had them. One evening, he comes home and goes to give them both a bath. While bathing them, he is reminded that it is time to get them fixed now that they are fully grown. He assures them, out loud, that he's a vet and will be sure everything goes smoothly. To Jooin's surprise, the dog and cat he's loved and cared for suddenly change into humans, begging him not to neuter them.
As it turns out, there is a secret society of anthromorphs called furries, and Jooin happened to adopt two of them. Jooin loves his dog and cat more than he loves himself, and they seem to love him just as much. However, when in human form, their love turns much more… lusty than Jooin ever expected. Can he learn to love the human versions of his beloved pets? And just how far is he willing to take his love for them?
The art style is cute but very, very inconsistent. Everyone also looks like they're sixteen or maybe even younger, which is very uncomfy for me. Don't get me wrong. They're all quite pretty. It's just this style leans very, very young, which is unfortunate since this is very sexual. Compounded by the fact that Iyoon, the cat, and Jinhan, the dog, act a bit like children, we have a super, super uncomfy situation. I don't mind the whole animal transforming into a human trope and them being more innocent and ignorant as a human than their love interest (I mean, I wrote my own novel with that premise), but It doesn't help that they are often referred to as kids. Any chance I might have had to enjoy this went right out the window when Jooin has a sexual relationship with his pet dog and cat, and they are referred to as kids. Uncomfy really doesn't begin to describe it. Don't get me wrong, they are depicted as adults and are called grown men multiple times, but in every other aspect, they are presented as way more innocent and ignorant than an adult might be, even after being trained in the ways of humans.
Even if none of that bothers you and you're interested in the smut, prepare to be disappointed. The smut is hardly even shown. I feel like this was drawn to initially be softcore, but then they decided to make it more hardcore and added a few scenes to pad out the sex. It's awkward and not satisfying at all. The variety in the scenes is also rather lacking, which was surprising since this is sex between three individuals rather than the usual two. Jooin is always the bottom, and Jinhan is almost always the top, while Iyoon usually just holds Jooin during his coupling with Jinhan. It's really boring, and while we do get some love for Iyoon, it's a drop in the bucket compared to all of the other scenes with all three present and only two doing anything. If there were a voyeuristic fetish to it, that would be one thing, but that isn't ever explored, so it always feels like the third person (often being Iyoon) is just sort of there in the name of calling it a threesome.
More than anything, the biggest travesty of all, minus the fact that the species of anthromorphs in this are called furries, is the storyline which is pretty much nonsensical. I'm not sure if this was just poorly translated or if that was how it was written, but it doesn't make much sense. There are so many variables involved with Jooin's sister, who functions as a pseudo-parent to Jooin, the lawyer furry that likes Jooin for no reason and also functions as a trainer for newly humanized anthromorphs, Jooin's ex, who is randomly trying to destroy Jooin's sister's business, Iyoon and Jinhan's model coworker who has a bit of scandalous background and who lusts after the duo, and a parrot furry who has an issue with humans and seems to lust after everyone he comes across. There are so many variables, and none of them are fleshed out beyond Iyoon, Jinhan, and Jooin, though even they have very little in the way of development. This would have benefited from some paring down, for sure.
Now, where this could have really shined is with the side story at the end. It's between the panther furry lawyer Jooheon and a wild deer furry Yoo Sunwoo. Sunwoo is a precious bean, speaking in the third person once he gets his name, learning to read, and being a ray of sunshine alongside Jooheon's doom and gloom. It's interesting getting a peek into the world of furries, which we don't get much of since Iyoon and Jinhan were raised outside of it by Jooin, but what we get is very superficial and sparse. It's interesting to know that some furries live out in the wild away from humans but that there are human hunters that specifically seek out furries. I wish we could have seen more of that world, but we're limited to about five episodes of these two. It's so unfortunate since this section had the most potential overall.
Unless you are desperate for some anthromorph and poly content, this is a huge miss, though I don't think this is that successful on those fronts, either. The smut, art, and writing are all extremely weak. I wish this story had been about Sunwoo, the deer, and Jooheon, the panther, as I feel that would have been much more successful overall. Regardless, I'd say unless you're desperate or just have the money to spend, save your coin and your time for other content.
Have you read Lick Me, Like Me? If so, what do you think? Do you agree with my assessment? Do you not? Let me know, and comment below!