23 of 24 chapters read
Double Arts is for me the perfect example of a manga with awesome ideas that for some reason or another just didnt get going properly. So lets break it down:
The world of Double Arts is one in which a rampant disease kills hundreds every day. The disease can be passed on through contact with any part of the infected persons body, and is always fatal - its just a matter of time. Handily occasionally some girls are born with a resistance. These girls can absorb the toxin of the disease, temporarily staving off death for a sufferer though never curing it. They are called the Sisters. Of course, they still have the disease even if they will not die from it soon, so can only touch each other.
A sister can choose to keep healing until they succumb themselves, or stop eventually and live the rest of their life training the next generation. So we join El, a sister dedicated to working until she dies to save as many as possble.
When she is finally about to succumb to the disease, both terrified and glad she has saved so many a boy grabs her hand and pulls her up from her coma. At first worried shes infected him, she quickly finds that letting go of his hand for even a few seconds results in her going back into the death coma - and he apparently shows no signs of the disease itself. Now he knows hes her cure though, he isnt letting go of that hand - even though its awkward.
When the organization finds out about this they realise he is a complete cure for the disease, and they begin efforts to receive him at their home base. Unfortunatly for them there is a group hinted to be behind the release of this disease, and they plan to kill off his cure.
So does that sound good? Better motivation than most Shonen manga right? even Luffy initial motivation seems stale and kinda silly compared to this (and i love one piece)
As ya might have guessed, this man can get our story on characters included. Elraine is adorable, but also determined and flawed and all those great things we love. she represents the feminity brought to the manga, the thing to protect for Kiri, and an obvious love interest whilst also providing a lot of the worlds backstory for us.
Kiri on the other hand is simple, fun, artistic and good hearted - and puts me into mind of essentially the ideal boyfriend material for the double that obviously seems to represent a first love sorta thing in the never stopping holding hands deally. He represents the bravery aspect, the willingless not to go back on his word at one point even though hes sure he will die and scared as hell is endearing, and marks him out as the shonen you will like for the series.
Meanwhile the background it equally well populated. Prepare to meet the ultimate definition of GARMoe - terrifyingly cute in Sui. Normally a psycho anger fuelled warrior girl with a lust for battle, the very occasional shine of adorability breaks through when she is beaten for the very first time is downright fantastic. She seems to represent rivalry perhaps, at the very least the irritant factor for Kiri.
Finally we have Fallan Denzel. Undoubtedly this man is strength. But hes an interesting variation on the whole wise master who teaches them. First of all he seems damn young, mid twenties about. Next of all he has hundreds and hundreds of rumours about him, about the numbers of people he has killed and the feats of strength he has peformed. He denies all of them and makes it seem like he is a normal person, except that doesnt explain why all the animals nearby are terrified of him.
At first it seems like he is just an overexagerated man, he is not scary really and very unthreatening. Then he jams a mans face three feet into a solid stone pavement in a panel. He also informs Kiri and El that he has made an oath never to fight for anyone but himself - but im having a feeling this is enforced by more than just a will of his own. I think if this had gone on Fallan would have represented the unpassable wall of power, being insanely strong but also not a help to Kiri or el because hes sworn not to. In short, this world meets its Kenpachi early and hes a lot scarier for having his boundaries never exactly defined...
So an impressive cast as well it seems.
Not mind blowingly impressive - but certainly better than most first tries youll see. It looks like the work of a man whos been doing manga for a long long time and doing it well. Expect a lot of varied faces, some interesting character designs, and actually quite well realised towns and villages. Seriously, youd be surprised at how good the street scenes look in this, with cobblestones, people, stores etc. its quite underrated.
The character design is also pretty good - if only hed been given enough time to get really into it im sure he could have given us greatness. The clothing is perfectly modelled for each character, the enemies dress fantastically and dangrously whilst the guy also knows how to draw our cuteness factor in.
So overall im sad this didnt get to be a full manga, but if ya want something bitesize youll enjoy and some cool characters to love, check it all out. ill be surprised if it doesnt endear to you. read more
1 of 1 chapters read
Sure, it kinda annoyed me that theres a religious theme towards the end, but its treated the same as Matsui treats most things - with madness.
And for those of you that love those WTF moments that the art in Neuro gave, youll like this.
I also found many moments to be extremely emotional and touching, wihlst the characters were well characterised and varied, each with their own personalities aims and backstories, some of them just tragic (especially that Doctor). The characters come from various countries and ethinicities, which makes a good change from casts inexplicably scattered across the world yet all japanese. Theres English, Chinese, African-American etc. its nice. Best of all, the villain to this piece is a marked change from most villains and a breath of fresh air against the common evil to everything type you get in some manga.
So if your bored and want to read another shonen manga, i would suggest this over most others.
Perhaps the best part of this manga is the characters however. From the main characters to even the very most minor, there is not one whom is completely undeveloped. Everyone feels very real and Human (or Inhuman when intended), even the basic criminals given the same treatment which makes finding out every reasoning interesting - and some making you feel so sympathetic for the murderer you would prefer they go free. This manga is truly one for people who like varied interesting characters. From the Sadistic 'Evil-Good' Neuro, to the petrified Along-for-the-ride Yako, to the childish but entertaining and slightly scary 'Chaotic-Evil' murderer X.
The artwork is difficult to rate numerically - ranging from 10 to 6 at its worst. Matsui has a beautifully surreal expressionlist drawing style, which leads him to create perhaps one or two very complex weirdly-beautiful drawings a chapter. These are unique from most manga and are often used to represent an idea as its being explained, or simply to unsettle. Some were so good i often find myself looking back through, and i have in fact bought some manga myself even though theyre in japanese for the best bits i enjoyed them so much. However, hes admitted that drawing these take up much of his time and in the earlier chapters its obvious the rest of the art suffers for it and its one week chapter creation time (and it doesnt help most scans represent it double its normal size, screwing the resolution up). As it goes on the standard art improves to an acceptable state with even more of the beautiful surrealist works per chapter, presumably as he gains assistants or improves time management, so stick with it.
In conclusion, if your bored with the standard Shonen clones, want something truly unique and unconventional, or happen to be a fan of bizarre art stylings - Read this Manga. If your not any of those, still read it because it will make you all those things regardless, and youll be better for it. read more