Take Isamu is an elitist 6th grader who looks down at his peers because he is the best at everything he does at school, from looks and smarts, to his luck with girls and his abilities as an athlete. He considers himself to be in the top percent of his age group and is incredibly bored with interacting with the so called normal people. A new student, Kaname Moka, transfers into his school and as she is fairly pretty, Isamu asks her out.
Moka mishears what he says and thinks he wants to challenge her, as she grew up boxing. In fact, Moka is an amazing fighter and can even take down 5 middle school boys at once. Although Isamu can’t stand her violent personality and she can’t stand him for having so much pride, they start to grow attracted to each other. But then Isamu finds out that not only is Moka more athletic than him from all her years of boxing, she's also much smarter than him. Will he able to get over his overly sensitive pride and dive into a romantic relationship?
The manga is about a boy who is very talented in sports. He meets a girl who practices boxing and starts boxing as a way to get her affection but ends up being consumed in the boxing world. The art is great and some characters are interesting but most are just either forgotten and never shown again or just very plain to the point you just forget they exist even though you still see them. Because of the manga losing popularity towards the end things get rushed a lot, even though it has some interesting fights after that it's just huge time skip after time
skip. The last chapter is just a huge time skip to how the author wanted to end the arc but it's all crammed in just a single chapter and the most important fight gets a simple little glance. If it didn't die so quick and it had a good not rushed ending it would score a lot more than just 7 which I think is still generous.
Probably the only one where I will give it an even rating across the board but I think this is accurate.
The story is actually quite cool, being a fan of boxing myself it was nice seeing a newer boxing manga because they are rare. Aside from the ending which I didn't like, the only other aspect of this that I disliked was how literal they made the techniques. For instance they would make it so the MC struggled against an enemy that he could easily defeat only to have him win after 'figuring out' something he already knew, or they had the MC pretend
the be bad only to show that he is good. It was kind of ridiculous in that regard.
The art was basic, you could see what was happening and feelings were properly portrayed through the expressions so that is good. I just don't particularly enjoy the art style itself.
Other than the things I mentioned about the MC pretending to be bad, he was a really likeable character who had great character progression, same as most other relevant side characters. I didn't like that Moka was chubby though, I liked it even less when they kept making her give up on her weight loss.
I won't spoil the end of the story for you but it was seriously a letdown.
First of all, sorry for my bad english and forgive me for any grammar errors.
Well, I'll write this review in a general perspective of the piece. Buyuden is a normal boxing manga. It has all the elements of a shounen/martial arts: A typical highschool boy gets to know some way that might make him stronger, and this simple desire is what keeps him moving forward.
But this had some new points that I have never seen in any boxing/martial arts manga. Well, the first one is that Take Isamu, the protagonist, wants to learn boxing only because he met a cute girl (Kaname Moka)
that pratices it, an so he has this sole motivation to introduce himself in the world of boxing.
Second point, the fights. They're not as emotional, tecnical, strategic and epic as Hajime no Ippo's fights. They're pretty simple and very fast. But the point here it's the results. The main pugilists struggle A LOT to defeat an oponent, and don't win the fights very often. They have to think fast, know their own weaknesses and punch under the adrenaline and pressure of a boxing match. They can't win with their motivations and willpower only. That is a strong point for creating realistic fights. Perhaps the strongest point in this manga.
The art is good, especially in the fights. From the beginning to the end, it doesn't change much.
Now to the weak points. Although the story is interesting in the beginning, it walks in the same path as any shounen manga. Take Isamu only continues in the world of boxing for the desire of becoming stronger, even if he says that he does so to "Complete Moka's dream".
The characters... well, they're not very developed. They do change, but it's nothing gradual and slow like Holyland. It's a bit unreal, but it doesn't mess up the story.
For conclusion: This is not similar to Hajime no Ippo, and neither to Holyland. This is Buyuden. It's not a unique manga, but it has it's differences with other shounen/sports/martial arts. I had a good time reading it, as a boxing fan myself.
My advice is: Are you a boxing/martial arts fan? Are you looking for some refresing reading? Do you just want to see some fast punching fights? Them Buyuden is for you, give it a shot.
Are you looking for a unique manga? Are you not a fan of boxing/martial arts? Are you looking for a manga with a strong story? Them, don't waste time reading it.
I’m not sure if starting a manga about boxing in these times is a really good idea from Takuya Mitsuda. This sport clearly lost the glory it had before, same for its popularity. If it had begun it in the ’80s or ’90s, maybe this manga would have encountered a very different destiny. But since almost no one cares about boxing anymore, it’s predictable that no one will care about a new boxing manga—besides the fan of Major I suppose. But against all expectations, the fact that no one cares about it doesn’t mean it’s bad at all. Believe me, this manga is worth it.
of all, the best thing that makes you able to criticize a sports manga, is that you practice or have practiced yourself the sport illustrated in the series, otherwise it would simply make no sense. I’m myself a big fan of boxing, since when I was younger the only gym of my small town was a boxing gym, so it forced me to discover the sport, gradually. It was years ago, but my passion for this sport is still growing, and lately, I combined my passions when I started reading some famous boxing manga, like the almost legendary Ashita no Joe and the well-known Hajime no Ippo. And then I discovered Buyuden, a very young manga with less than a year of existence. I was amazed to find a manga about boxing this recent and my curiosity took the control and sincerely, I’m not disappointed that I did, even though the series wasn’t popular at all. And then, let me explain to you why I enjoy this manga so far.
For a lot of readers, probably the most important thing; the story. It would be an outrageous exaggeration to say that the scenario of Buyuden is extremely good. But I found that the storyline was something refreshing in the way the main character decides to start boxing. He doesn’t want to be strong or he doesn’t want to be able to kick some asses.; he simply wants to get closer to a girl. His love for a girl will make him start boxing. Said like that it may sound wrong to some, but it’s at least something I never saw in any other sports manga, even if I know that it’s totally not genius worthy. But it’s precisely what could also bother some readers; the story is somewhat romance oriented and that’s the very reason why it can differ so from other sports manga. Besides, I must still say that the manga takes some recurring concept from the world of sports manga that you will easily discern, even some elements of the story is taken from Takuya Mistuda’s previous work, Major. If you also want to know if I found something wrong about the story, yes there is. Even if it’s a minor detail, the fact the protagonist’s parents sent him to a public school in order to make him learn about life in society sounds really lame. I always thought that in general, Japanese parents always wanted the best for their children when it comes to studies. But yeah, the author couldn’t have demonstrated the protagonist superiority as much easily otherwise, but I would have liked a more ingenious reason.
Then we thus arrive at the section which I find the most interesting; the characters. Let’s start with the protagonist, Isamu Take; a pretentious guy who’s looking down on everyone and thinking he is better than anyone. The type of person the typical reader will see as a complete asshole. But character development quite early in the story will make those readers much more than happy. He will encounter someone who will make him suppress his pride, while being humiliated. His reactions through the events that will follow will be quite interesting, making him a character almost endearing. I can’t help myself but to like this kind of character development, not in the way that I like to see someone being humiliated, but it’s always entertaining to see the detestable character back on the right path. And the second most important person, Moka Kaname, a pretty unusual presence in the world of sports manga, who is a serious elementary student girl with mad skills at boxing. Seriously I find this character very original, and it’s not difficult to any readers to start to like her, especially after what she did to the protagonist. The only downside is her background story, I found it a bit cliché, I even suspect the author of being inspired by Ichiro Miyata from Hajime no Ippo. And it’s pretty much the same for the rest of the main cast. Watari, the prodigy who will become a rival. The usual old trainer that think the protagonist is a weakling until he realizes his true potential et cetera. It’s still the highlight of the manga in my opinion.
Then now about the art. There’s nothing really to say, it’s not bad but it’s nothing extraordinary, just the typical Takuya Mitsuda’s graphics. But it’s probably just my imagination but at some moments I found that Moka had visual resemblance with Joe Yabuki, especially in her hairstyle, like they have the same hair fringe. But anyway, it’s probably not intentional.
This isn’t a revolutionary manga but at least I really enjoyed it for what I read so far. Not a single second I was bored with it and I’m looking forward for the next chapters. I especially hope this manga to become more popular in a near future. Buyuden is clearly a sports manga with a lot of potential, and I hope it will deliver even more.
UPDATE—03/03/14 (CONTAINS SPOILERS)
It often happens. A manga loses its popularity and then gets the axe, when there are still way more to be expected. It then gets a mediocre rushed ending that satisfies no one, and sinks into oblivion. And here I am again, almost three years later after I wrote this review. I was seeking to attract people around this unpopular manga, and it unfortunately seems that as we speak the popularity of this manga is almost as low as before. In the end, the author’s idea of doing a boxing manga won’t have given him a second story worthy of Major. The last sentence of my review seems very ironic by now, since it was filled of hope for this manga. I’m not here to recommend this manga anymore, it wouldn’t be appropriate to suggest you a manga that doesn’t even a proper conclusion. But a lot of unexpected things happened after I wrote this review, like the time-skip and Moka’s “change of shape” that traumatized quite a few readers. There’s also coach’s death, the fact that Watari became a partner, and a lot more things. It at least managed to be unpredictable and original on many points. I wouldn’t like to lower the score I previously gave to this manga just because it was suddenly stopped, I think it wouldn’t be representative of the work. I just hope that the next manga from Takuya Mitsuda will be here to stay.