One day in the 21st century, a gate opened in the middle of the Ginza district of Tokyo. Out of the gate poured soldiers and strange creatures, and they soon made Ginza look like an image of hell. The gate apparently connected Japan to another world, a world with a militant empire and many supernatural creatures. The Japanese Self-Defense Force decided to send a small group, led by a soldier who's also an otaku, into the other world on a reconnaissance mission. They're meant to learn what they can about the empire (and its plans), the world, and the people.
They're hardly in the world yet, though, when they come across a village destroyed by a giant fire-breathing dragon. The only survivor is an unconscious elven girl they find hidden in a well. Now they feel like they must warn the nearby towns about the dragon, and do what they can to help. On the way, they'll meet more magical, female companions, and learn more about this dangerous new world.
The concept of our world meeting another and the problems that arise was fairly interesting. What got me however, was the constant slamming of other nations VS the beneficial Japanese ones.
I get it, the politics are there, and if you look for it, people have been discussing this manga quite a lot. This manga is NOT the first by far to bring this type of commentary into a manga. Rather for me, it's the constant USA etc bashing that has slowly grated my nerves. I get it, it's not unique in the slightest and there are some
valid criticisms, but it's really old for me.
Okay, normally I don't write reviews but seeing the other reviews here praising this thing to the high heavens and what I feel about this in it being a lost opportunity for something that could have been great, I felt motivated enough to write a review.
Okay so why could this have been great? Well the underlying premise is simply an idea that offers a lot of potential. Fantasy magical Romanesque world meets modern earth with all it's high tech gadgetry and scientific insight, Hernán Cortés meets the Aztecs turned up to 11. In its larger overarching themes it has that "epic" dynamic of
scale and potentially gravitas to the events that transpire.
Why then does it not work and why did I give it a 3 overall? Well the failure lies in the execution and in particular I think to challenge one word that's used to describe this would cover a lot of the problems that exist in the execution of this intriguing story premise. That word is "seinen", this is not seinen, this is shounen. The characters are no LotGH "realistic" multifaceted characters or anything like it, they are hammy, melodramatic and a constant buffoonish comedy is weaved throughout in combination with a really puerile sexual fetishism. It's a kind of Love Hina or some such thing meets LoTR meets Jackass and this is a really terrible juxtaposition.
This story would be so great in my view if it had taken more or less the same overarching story dynamic and adopted a more Rudyard Kipling "The Man Who Would Be King" approach focusing on some lone individual or small group of individuals who came across a portal to another world. Then follow them as they discover this world and change it with their scientific knowledge and technological gadgetry. As well as cutting out the more "shounen" elements and as for having it on the scale it is in order to include an "earth" side international political "intrigue". This side of the story is really terrible and downright quaint in its approach in the worst possible sense of that term. Had this been an actual seinen publication though rather than another slapstick adventure story it really could have been something. Instead it's more like a parody of a serious work which really seems to slow down, distract and detract from the story.
Gate - Jietai Kare no Chi nite, is a manga that most people would take one look at it and consider garbage, Midevil fantasy theme with modern military intervention. It seems like a recipe for disaster but on contrary its actually very refreshing.
(Minor Spoilers Alert)
The story takes place in japan where a giant portal to another world appears in Tokyo, where a army from the new world appears and attacks Tokyo killing over 100 people. Japan outraged by this disaster calls for the JSDF to intercept and destroy the enemies. In no time the enemies are distroyed and in the mercy of JSDF.
character of the story is a commander of a small unit in the JSDF named Youji Itama he is a second commander and a self proclaimed Otaku. In the process he meets many friends in the way of different races and tries to make peace in the natives.
In my personal opinion I found this manga to be very interesting specially the fighting with most people will know right away that its complete rape. Modern weapons vs bows and arrows. However right away you can see that people in this new world understand very quickly that they are powerless to stop the JSDF. But the real interesting part of the manga is how other countries will decide to act like the United States and China, both who have interests in this new world which appeared in Japan.
Overall I give this Manga a 9 for creativity and story. Its a manga that people should check out.
I first heard of the manga series when I read on ANN that it was going to be getting an anime adaptation in the near future. The synopsis piqued my interest and I had some free time so I decided to go read the first couple chapters.
I finished up to the latest chapter a night later. I was hooked.
Gate is not a sophisticated story. It's not meant to be moralistic or intellectual. It's just a fun ride with many ups-downs and loops. This series is the marriage of two seemingly non-integratable genres (military and high fantasy) and the execution of it is spot on
and here's why:
- The story is relatively simple but has the ability to add onto itself to complicate the situation or make it more interesting. The premise in it of itself can sell the story though. Just the interactions between the JSDF soldiers and fantasy folk were enough to sell me on the series.
- The art is good. Character designs are decent and unique in some areas. There is also care taken into drawing both machine and creature with care.
- The characters however are what make this series shine. It is their interactions that make this series worthwhile and seeing their routine makes for a fun time.
These all make for a great read.
However, you won't enjoy this if it's not your taste. If you're looking for a commentary on the horrors of war or the terrors of technology being subjugated on the inferior, then this isn't for you.
If you want to see kings and knights get sh*t-stompped by Tanks, APCs and Assault Rifles or a mage asking what magical incantations needed to be performed to use C4, then Gate delivers. 100%.
If you want something to have fun reading, pick this series up!
Gate: Jieitai Kanochi nite, Kaku Tatakaeri is a Summer 2015 anime based off a novel. Let's see what the star, Suwabe Junichi, thinks about the recording process, series, and the main character! (No spoilers)