English: Zombie Powder
Synonyms: Ultra Unholy Hearted Machine, Rune Master Urara, Bad Shield United
Published: Jul 19, 1999 to Feb 8, 2000
Authors: Kubo, Tite (Story & Art)
Serialization: Shounen Jump (Weekly)
Score: 7.451 (scored by 3928 users)
1 indicates a weighted score
2 based on the top manga page.
Popular Tagsaction adventure shounen supernatural
Feb 22, 2009
This Manga could go either way for the reader really, it had quite a bit of potential and could have went further if it had a little more support. It is a shame that it didn't, Zombie powder had an interesting story and plot line, the story of the Rings of the Dead and the Zombie Powder is rarely something seen in Manga making its story more original than most, along with good action scenes excellent fight sequences and some bizarre moves, and plot twists, it's more than enough to keep someone interested.
The artwork was good and clean with attention to detail, there was isn't a scene where to much there is to much happening in one image that could be eye distracting for the reader. Good character art, loved the main character Gamma's hair do. The only real downside is that it could be considered somewhat simple.
The characters of the story, are fairly well balanced and developed, each have their strengths and weaknesses, and can take care of themselves during a battle without relying on the main character to help them out all the time, compare it to the Bleach Soul Society arc, Ichigo being the strongest of the group, was depended on the most , this annoys me in Manga's when most of the main cast are dependent on the main character, it lowers the value of the characters till later on in the series (clearly evident in Bleach).
The main character Gamma along with his partner/friend CT Smith provide the major fighting power for the group and action scenes for the story, Gamma providing comical humour usually more present in his actions whereas CT Smith provides more sarcastic, subtle and somewhat mocking humour to balance it out. Gamma being the swordsman uses a wide variety of techniques and battle skill easily over powering the majority of enemies (with some techniques vaguely reminiscent of Ichigo's techniques), CT Smith provides marksmanship with incredible skill seen shooting out the pins of the wheels of a moving train without missing a shot. These two provide the main force and best battle scenes of the story.
The setting for the story is in a somewhat futuristic/sci-fi western universe, with guns, outlaws, bandits,etc, has a slightly more original setting and is similar to the Trigun series setting.
Overall, if your a fan of Bleach, then you should enjoy Zombie Powder (since it was done by the same Mangaka Tite Kubo), or at least give it a look. The story, characters and action scenes are great and it gave me a good laugh. My only problem is that it ended to abruptly and was left with that unfinished feeling, so for that i would give a 7 overall, i would like to have given it a 7.5 but that score isn't there, and if lasted longer and finished off without leaving such an open ending i would have probably given it an 8 or 9.
Still worth a read anyway. read more
Jan 21, 2008
As far as art goes, it's very similar in style to Bleach-- good but not quite great. I would say that the mangaka's style hasn't really changed too much.
People who have read/seen Bleach will notice very obvious parallels between Ichigo and Gamma, both of which utilize ridiculously large swords and whose bodies contain some greater, dark being holding tremendous power. Both of these darker sides are at once the protagonist and not, and you see Ichigo/Gamma noticeably suppress them. There are some other character similarities (Inoue and "Wolfgangina" [<--- that really is her name, I'm not kidding] look very similar) but they're not quite as evident.
The characters are fairly well developed, better so than in Bleach, if you only go up to volume 4 (the last volume in Zombie Powder) to be fair. Some of the characters are pretty cool, my favorite of the bunch is probably CT Smith, a charismatic gunslinger who offers some of the best humor in the series. The characters are a bit more balanced than in Bleach (where Ichigo is by far the strongest of the original team that went to Soul Society) and can take care of themselves fairly well without always having to rely on Gamma-- something I appreciate.
In terms of settings, the Bleach and Zombie Powder universes are almost polar opposites. Bleach is a supernatural Japanese universe complete with swords and spirits while Zombie Powder is a sci-fi Western (think cowboy movies w.r.t to the Western part) universe with guns and outlaws. Between the two settings, I honestly prefer the supernatural Japanese one, although I will admit it is rather trite and Zombie Powder's setting is much more original (though it has a possible cousin in the form of Trigun).
As Zombie Powder is an action manga, it would be a tremendous oversight to discuss it without mentioning a bit about the action scenes, which I think are fairly good. They're actually quite similar to Bleach-- clean art, lots of plot twists in which it'll seem one guy is coming out on top but hey, go figure, he actually isn't, a generous helping of humor both during and between action scenes to keep the mood light. Also lots of bizarre "special" attacks and villains, ranging from a crazy circus magician to a titanic fat woman. It's a bit wacky, but if you've read the Bleach manga up to the latest chapters (with the rather bizarre and gruesome Szayel vs Mayuri fight) it's nothing you haven't seen before, anyway.
In conclusion, not a bad manga but I can't help but feel something is missing. Maybe that is due to the fact that this manga never really ended, the mangaka stopped abruptly. Maybe it's because some of the mechanics in the manga are a bit too similar to Bleach. It might also be because of the really cliche premise of the story-- essentially a search for "Rings of the Dead" to construct Zombie Powder to gain immortality. I think in the end, this was a worthwhile read for me, if only for historical purposes. If you like Western settings in manga, or if you really liked Bleach a lot and would like to see a similar series, or hey if you just have some free time, maybe take a quick look at Zombie Powder and see if you like it.
Dec 4, 2008
The art is just plain awful. The lack of detail is astounding. Some of these characters are missing eyes, which may or may not be a stylistic thing; I leave that to you to decide. It looks sloppy, and whether the character is male or female it doesn't matter because they both look the same. Some of the character designs are decent, but other than that they look like they were ripped from other manga/anime.
The characters are pretty clichéd, and there's back story for about half of them. This is probably because they stopped printing this, so it ends before it even begins. If he'd continued making this, maybe it would have turned out to be something with a decent plot and character development, something worth reading, but as it stands, it’s barely passable. Unless you're a huge fan of Bleach, or a 13 year old kid, I say skip this mediocre piece and go read something good. read more
Mar 25, 2008
Pros: Interesting story, great chance to check out the development of a famous artist's/author's progress, unique character designs
Cons: Ending leaves the reader hanging, unsatisfying if you're read Kubo's later works, basic "searching for 'forbidden' things" plot
Nov 19, 2012
The story revolves mainly around the characters of Elwood Shepherd and Gamma Akutabi who are trying to collect the 12 Rings of the Dead. When all 12 are collected, supposedly you gain immortality. Not too original of a storyline, but Kubo develops the idea pretty well and the actual story does have a few twists. There's a lot of action and fighting which I typically like, but it could be said that there are too many fighting scenes. So many that the plot seems like it hardly exists and that this is just a fight-fight-fight manga.
Sadly, the manga remains unfinished and there are only 4 volumes so there is no closure on what happens and if the protagonists do get the rings. Overall it's a decent read. read more
Jul 9, 2010
all in all, a great read, you should check it out, worth the time, ANYTIME.
Apr 2, 2013
I see Elwood as pretty much Wolfwood in a sense because most of the times he’s talking to Gamma, I can see Wolfwood doing the same for Vash. Still, there are quite a bit odd things that make him his own character. All the characters call him by his middle name it seems since in his BO, his full name is read as John Elwood Shepherd. His drive is only one thing, bringing his sister back to life after feeling very guilty for the events leading up to her death. I somewhat consider him more like our introduction since the story ends with him a bit.
The next character we should talk about is CT Smith who is Gamma’s partner. Why he wears a professional suit in hot dry weather is beyond me but it doesn’t look like he would be very comfortable. He’s pretty smart and seems to look up to Gamma though he somewhat matches him in strength. He also has a really really bad habit of building bombs that never once work right. He has been yelled at by Gamma for that many times.
And last we have Wolfgangina Lalla Getto (Wolfina). Who in their right mind would freaken call there kid Wolfgangina? Anyway, she is paparazzi journalist who has a really strange idea of justice. For example, after taking a picture of a gangboss trying to rape a woman, she doctored it to make it seem that he was a dominatrix.
I had trouble with the name for a rather long time. It really looks like it should be Zombie Power and not Powder, doesn’t it? Even in the description, I had a hard time not writing ‘power hunter’ instead. There is also the fact that the author has for some unknown reason given every single character who is in this manga a full name even if they were only fought for one chapter or has been seen in two or three panels. That’s a bit of dedication right there but I feel it’s unnecessary. Also, this would have been a really good manga if the creator didn’t decide to cut it off so soon. It felt unfinished after the forth episode. In the end, it just needed to keep going and give us more then a preview of what could have been.
The artwork is really out of this world with all the different types of swords and weapons they have. It’s got a really fun steam punk artstyle at times and yet, it isn’t fully steampunk. You can see it in the ‘Jet powered’ swords and even in Gamma’s Chainsaw sword but no one is really read more
Feb 27, 2012
I adore Tite Kubo's art, which is why I picked it up in the first place. It's just personal preference, but I find it stunning and beautiful in its simplicity.
I read all of it in one sitting and was sorely disappointed when I found out it was a discontinued series.
Even though it doesn't have a proper ending, it's worth the read. It's well paced, it's funny, and the characters are enjoyable.
True, a lot of it is recycled or cliche things that you can see in most shonen work, but that doesn't make it any less fun to read. It's just another take on some of the same old things, but it's definitely not boring because of it.