A drugstore that deals in medicine ... and danger! Kazahaya Kudo has a gift. When he touches a person or an object, he sees visions. With no money and no place to stay, Kazahaya was out of luck until fate brought him to the Green Drug pharmacy. Now, in exchange for working in the store, he gets room and board. But in order to make ends meet there's a catch ... he must take on 'special' assignments from his boss that can only be handled by someone with Kazahaya's gift. With the help of his co-worker and roommate Rikuo, who has unusual powers of his own, Kazahaya finds himself on missions most surreal.
Gohou Drug was published in English as Legal Drug by Tokyopop from October 12, 2004 to June 7, 2005. Dark Horse gained publishing rights to the series after Tokyopop was dissolved and republished the series in a complete omnibus volume on September 30, 2014.
I was waiting for a friend to get done with something while standing in a Barnes & Noble and I saw Legal Drug and that it was by CLAMP so I picked it up and started reading it. In the long run my friend showed up and had to wait for me to finish before we left. I later found out she had the second one and I borrowed it. And now I have the third.
I find the characters believable and attractive (not a necessity but a perk). On top of that I find the story very interesting. It is
one of those manga you wonder the who time what is the thing you are missing, what is the thing the boss knows that no one else does, what is going on? I really enjoyed this manga and I am sad that CLAMP has kind of put it on hiatus for the time being.
Not officially dropped, but probably low on CLAMP\'s \"to-finish\" list. xXxHolic does the whole \"guy who can See Things is forced to run errands for mysterious shop owner\" thing better. Mild BL fanservice between the two main characters is the only real draw.
I have deduced that when CLAMP sets out to create a piece of work, they put in a plan to put it to a halt. Just to make us all suffer (not really, but doesn't it make you wonder?).
Story: For any of you familiar with xxxHolic, Legal Drug plays out similarly to that, even though LD came before it. But while in Holic you find Yuuko's store when you have a wish to be granted and Watanuki and Domeki find a way to grant it for you; in LD Kakei, the owner of the Green Drug Store, comes to Rikuo and Kazahaya with odd
jobs. Jobs only they could do because of their abilities. All so that they can earn extra money on the side to pay for rent. On the surface that's it. Underneath it all something more complex slowly seeps out the sides, pulling you deeper and deeper into it only to end at volume 3! We really start to taste the story, with Kakei, Rikuo and Kazahaya, and even Saiga and we don't really get enough. But the problem is, that what we do get is absolutely wonderful. Throughout each of the side quests, we get these little bits of both Rikuo and Kazahaya's past, that make you itch for more. In the end, I'm really looking forward to it [finally] being continued. There really isn't anything more exciting than knowing that your finally going to get more.
Art: What can I say [again]? CLAMP makes itself known on its artwork and its characters. LD has a 90s feel to me although it was published in the 00s. It's reminiscent of X and Clover. It's edgy, dark and detailed. You really can't go wrong if you're already a CLAMP fan, and if you aren't than you might want to give it a try because it's truly worth it. It also carries the same sensual feel that CLAMPs older works do that I think the newer ones do not. CLAMP was at its best artistically at this time and I don't think you should pass up the chance to experience it for yourself.
Character: Absolutely the best aspect of LD. Kakei is a favorite along with Rikuo. But I've grown to love them all. Their personalities are so quirky and aggressive, it's obvious that they're children of CLAMP. What should also be apparently obviously is the shounen-ai, especially between Kakei and Saiga [you can't miss it - really]. If you have a problem with this, then what the hell are you reading CLAMP for? No one wants to hear you bitch and moan about how much you can't stand it when the simple solution was to just not read it - or to keep your mouth shut. Another wonderful aspect about these characters is their air of mystery. That's what LD is about. Finding out who exactly Rikuo and Kazahaya are, who the women in their lives are, why Kakei opened the Drug Store for them and why is it that they all came to be together? What is Legal Drug? You shouldn't pass up Legal Drug purely for the fascination of Rikuo, Kazahaya, Kakei and Saiga.
Enjoyment: I really love LD, absolutely. I'm an avid CLAMP reader and fan as well, so my opinion might be biased. But that shouldn't dissuade you from taking the time to just see if this one is for you. Because CLAMP never really seems to fail with it's characters and they always manage to make a story come to life around them and their art is always superbly detailed and rich that I can't help but enjoy [almost - see Chobits] everything that they give us. And this one, despite it's length, didn't disappoint me.
This plot is developing really well. Every 'assignment' leads us a little closer to knowing what is happening with Kazahaya and Rikou and these mysterious women. So far we are still no closer to knowing the reasons for the assignments but I don't doubt that it will be revealed in due course.
Legal Drug also has good character development. The relationship between Rikou and Kazahaya grows more and more obvious (to everyone except them). Their feelings for the 'lost women' of their lives is shown wonderfully.
There is a lot left unsaid though, since Saiga and Keiko are still very much unknown to the reader. It can
also be confusing having 2 slim blonde characters and 2 heavily built dark haired characters, thank Gods for glasses!
Although this manga series is made up of lots of separate assignments there are knock on effects from each one and issues are carried over. The reader is given tantalising teases about both Rikou's and Kazahaya's past and their relationships. It is also quite humorous.
The colour artwork at the start of each manga and the trace drawings are a wonderful addition and some of the nicest manga artwork I have come across.
I have to say this has quickly become one of my favorite mangas, the pictures, the teasing of Kazahaya by almost everyone, as well as the surreal assignments and the mystery of those women. This manga grips me and makes me laugh out loud. I will say though that if shonen ai isn't your thing then don't read this but if you're like me and you're partial to a bit of shonen ai then jump right on in!
Nanashi Moriko *Not quite a Legal Drug fangirl but dying to read vol 4.*