On the once-peaceful planet of Industria, constant battles have been fought over control of the planet. Astro is a dim witted but kind boy who tirelessly works to feed his "family," a group of orphaned children. One day, after being fired from his most recent job, the prince of Industria, Bulge, appears in front of him. And even more shocking, Prince Bulge looks and sounds exactly like Astro! One thing leads to another, and Astro now has to take Bulge's place as the heir to the throne of Industria! Suddenly, he's faced with the task of bringing peace and harmony back to this war-torn planet!
There are those stories that simply can't go up in popularity because (maybe) the readers are waiting for the same kind of storytelling that comes from the same magazine and with that, the shonen genre becomes our daily bread. Barrage was one of the works that managed to overcome the barrier of popularity because of today, the person behind this work is best known for creating the mega-hit "My Hero Academia" [or in Japanese "Boku no Hero Academia"] which currently has several animations and a second season currently airing.
The problem with Barrage [or in Japanese "Sensei no Baruji"] is
that it should have this level of popularity at the time it was released because not everyone is curious enough to look for this work created by Horikoshi Kohei. Nowadays, readers or people, in general, are too lazy to give value to these manga gems overall and that's a complete shame. Barrage was lucky enough to be released by Viz Media under the Shonen Jump Alpha, whose work is the only one I know that went through this process and for being released solely in Japanese and English.
In "Barrage" the story begins with Astro, a spunky slum kid who works to an old man in a planet called Industria. Astro is a dim-witted but kind boy who tirelessly works to feed his family, a group of six orphaned children in which he is seen as an older brother. But one day, after being fired from his job, he meets the Prince of Industria named Barrage. One thing leads to another and now Astro has become Prince Barrage, a boy charged with the duty of restoring peace to the planet.
Astro behaves like a typical shounen protagonist, however, he has something different or at least, I think while reading the volumes. He's a kind boy and works all the way to sustain his family of orphans and to love them. He always puts his life at stake but he knows that he wins anyway and maybe that's what makes him so special in my way of seeing.
This story is told in a fast-paced series of events in which the first one is given to Astro the org, a weapon that can only be used in the hands of the king or someone with the potential to become the king (in a particular case, the Prince). Basically, the org is a trident and it serves as Astro's weapon for the whole series. Astro is sent out into Industria by the king, to help stop the Age of the Battlestar, which is basically the chaos of war and corruption raging through Industria. Then, the adventure begins, Astro is sent out with Tiamat, the King's trusted knight whose name commands respect across the planet, also the first battalion lieutenant. In this part of the story, he cares for the king greatly and is annoyed by Astro's less way of doing things. Tiamat fights with his trusted sword and overall has a great skill using it.
The artwork of this manga is one of the best I've seen so far and for a quick story, this was just perfect. I also think that the characters are well-written overall, however, Black's character should have had more screen time.
I've heard and a personally know a lot of people saying this manga is boring or a waste of time and I honestly don't understand why people hate this manga this much. Sure, it has potential to be a better story but you have to face the reality, this needed to have more popularity like I mentioned before to be something like that.
In the end, I will give it a 10 out of 10. For me, it's my favorite Kohei Horikoshi's work, without a doubt.
"I'm the prince scumbag!! I'm gonna pierce straight through you!!!"
First off, my first review for this site, and its late at night. This will be as spoiler free as possible, put I am gonna explain some things (Most of which are explained in the first chapter, so their not really spoilers)
So, Sensei no Bulge (Or Barrage as I believe it is officially called in America), is a story about a boy named Astro, who grew up in the slums of the planet...Industria I believe it is called.
Astro is basicaly a typical Shounen Protagonist. Hes stupid (though smart when he needs to be in a fight),
powerful (threw the power of the Org) and will put the live of friends before himself and put his life on the line for them any day (Though with Astro, it is mainly his "family")
Astro went through his early life in the slums with no money. *Spoilers* He grew up like this until meeting Black, who sort of set him on the right path. And by that, I mean cept him from turning crooked..whatever that means. *Spoilers over* Astro later met other orphans like him, and adopted them. He began to work in order to get the food for him and them to survive, and he grew to truly love them and consider them his family.
With that said, the plot begins. Through a fast paced series of events, Astro is given the Org, a weapon that can only be used in the hands of the King, or someone with the potential to become the king (usually only the prince would fit this description). It takes on the appearance of a...trident I guess(at first anyway), and it serves as Astros weapon for the series. Astro is sent out into Industria by the king, to help stop the Age of the Battlestar, which is basically the chaos of war and corruption raging through Industria.
Astro is sent out, along with Tiamet. Tiamet is the vice-captain of the military force, and in my opinion a total badass. He cares for the king greatly, and is constantly annoyed by Astros less than dedicated way of doing things. Tiamet fights with a collapsible sword, and does it with great skill. He can easily take down the aliens of the series, who I an only assume are stronger than the average Human.
Sensei no Bulge starts off pretty face paced, gets right to things. I've heard alot of people say it is boreing at the beginning, which is sorta true. But so are the beginning 7-8ish chapters of plenty of other Manga. I enjoyed eveything greatly up until the end myself.
The artwork is just great, I really have no complaints. I do hate Astros outfits though, but that's not directly related to the art style.
Now, the series was unfortunately canceled 16 chapters in, only having enough time to half ass-idly (conjunction!) wrap everything up and leave me wanting more. If one thing can be said about this series is how much potential it had. It had so many ways to take the story, and never go the chance.
In the end, I will give it a 7 out of 10. Its short length and rushed ending are holding it back from a solid 8 in my opinion.
With a somewhat solid 45 minutes spent on this review, I shall click the Submit Review button, and hope you enjoy my review for Sensei no Bulge, AKA the Bulge of the Battle Star...
Well since it got past 10 chapters, guess Ill give it a 6/10 instead of a 5. It had potential really with interesting character designs and a main character that was cool and lovable. His side character partner, Tiamat was also good with this time frame. I would have liked more backstory on him given. The potential for a long adventure was actually here as well as a potentially deep and immersive world. Its terrible that it had to be cancelled early and lots of details left hidden. Rushed ending chapter though :/
For 16 chapters it is worth checking out for its sci fi theme
Interesting setting and memorable, easy-to-understand characters, but the plot progression ran in conflict with the entire synopsis, and it sort of stumbled over its own feet as a result.
The pitch: Plucky protagonist boy replaces his royal double in a sci-fi fantasy re-imagining of the Prince and the Pauper, with stress on how he's more worthy of the role of prince, but his double was still a real person (who is nothing like him) and his loss is felt by most of the characters, both positively and negatively.
The story: Plucky protagonist gets a new awesome weapon and wanders off into the featureless desert to fight mooks
because Battle Manga, I Guess, leaving 80% of the setup behind.