Rikuo Nura appears to be an ordinary middle school student. Appearances, however, can be deceiving. In reality, the young boy has one-fourth of youkai blood and is the heir to a large clan of youkai led by his grandfather, Nurarihiyon. As a small child, he was told that youkai often perform evil deeds, leading to his reluctance to succeed the Nura Clan and doing whatever he could to avoid his destiny.
During the night, Rikuo undergoes a transformation into a fearsome youkai who resembles Nurarihiyon in his prime. Realizing that he can use his power to protect others, he accepts his inheritance, aiming to unite all the youkai factions across Japan and establish his own "Night Parade of a Hundred Demons."
Nurarihyon no Mago was published in English as Nura: Rise of the Yokai Clan by VIZ Media under the Shonen Jump imprint from February 1, 2011 to February 3, 2015; and in Italian as I Signori dei Mostri by Panini Comics under the Planet Manga imprint from April 25, 2010 to May 31, 2014.
I decided to write this review because all other people that wrote the reviews here haven't finished the manga....
So first I need to say that I watched both seasons of the anime, and after that I decided to read the manga (started on chapter 134 until 210 and then read the 5 omakes that come after)
I will be sincere, the story starts slow, but after a while it gets really good.
The second main arc (with Hagoromo Gitsune) is the best for me... after that the manga gets a little bit slow again, but then it get's better, SO DON'T GIVE UP
The manga got axed by
Jump, which is not a novelty (Jump does that with most mangas =//), so we have the final battle in a differente magazine (~60 pages per chapter and coloured pages!!) - that's a plus. And 5 omakes in the end that explain some stuff that didn't get explanation before...
So, even though it got axed, we still got a good story with a nice end.
I recommend everyone that like shounen in the style of KHR, Ao No Exorcist, Noragami to take a look at this manga.
The art style is great! The author draws really well, love the art style.
The story is quite nice about youkais and different kind of powers. Also, it talks about gods and myths in Japan, which is a plus for me.
I am a girl, and even though this a shounen, for me matters a lot if there are strong girls as characters, and there are!! So another plus!
One of the better new ear shonen but its ending forces it to get knocked down a bit.
The main feature of this manga was its art, which was done beautifully. I like the character designs which felt with the main art style. It was gritty yet at times beautiful. The villains were bizarre but not over the top. Some of them had depth while others were a bit lacking especially the rat youkais.
I give the author props for not dragging the story on but I felt like the ending was gone too quickly which makes it feel empty. The ending is similar to
the one in Hitman! Reborn.
I could see this manga getting a sequel but it's highly doubtful now.
Nurarihyon no Mago had a really bumpy start in my opinion. The first couple chapters were generic, the lead was boring, way too many characters to care about, and it was pretty boring. The whole "youkai" angle just seemed like a cheap gimmick to cover up how utterly bland and mediocre it felt. However despite that, I continued because I thought it had some potential and man oh man did it really become something else. The beginning is EASILY the worst part of the manga. Unlike most shounen, where strong beginnings are the norm, Mago plays it completely differently and does the opposite. It starts
off with a rather weak beginning, picks up steam after the first couple of volumes than it really takes off and becomes amazing. A true diamond in the rough.
The story revolves around a quarter blooded Youkai/Ayakashi named Rikuo who has to come to terms with becoming the leader of his youkai clan. Its a pretty cliched premise and it even comes with the whole "dark alter ego" spiel ,who serves as the true leader of the clan and has a ridiculous hair style. I can't say I liked that annoying "Yami Rikuo" thing that the mangaka had going but thankfully it was done away with and the personality became the same for both egos eventually. Of course this happens over a period of time and is subtly implemented which is one of the manga's strong points. While in some of earlier arcs, small bits of interesting information are scattered here and there, only to be brought up later. Its obvious that a lot of time and effort went into making the story good and it really begins to show later on. It especially gets good after chapter 50, when the main villain gets introduced and a concise goal is finally presented to the lead. This manga borrows heavily from a lot of old Japanese myths and legends, so it has some really rich material to work with. At its best, the story can get really interesting especially during the major flashback arc.
Mago shoves A LOT of characters into the readers face at the beginning. Its almost guaranteed that you won't remember any of the youkai that hang around Rikuo all the time. However as the manga goes on, many of the youkai get some time to shine and they get reintroduced to the audience. Their past/youkai quirk all go a long way in creating a really memorable cast of characters. As I'm writing this review, a lot of characters that got introduced in chapter 1 are getting some much deserved time in the spotlight for themselves in the recent chapters. The truth is, the beginning might have felt kinda off because the mangaka was trying to lay the foundation quickly. Get all the necessary exposition out of the way so that everything that comes after has more focus and better writing. It might not have been the best method, but everything in the past couple of arcs have been rock-steady in quality.
The art is phenomenal, especially considering the fact that it's a weekly manga. Not one youkai design is alike, and that's saying a lot since there's literally hundreds of unnamed youkai designs in the manga. Never mind the main cast, who all have really unique designs that range from quirky to down right badass. It has a paint-brush like quality to it which really looks amazing sometimes, not to mention there's nothing quite like it in Jump at the moment. The artstyle in this manga is just dripping with imagination, just like One Piece in that regard. The fights range from forgettable to really awesome. However this factor fluctuates a lot more than the other elements but most of time, they're all solid.
Mago does a lot to separate itself from the standard shounen fare. Sure it has its share of cliches and archetypes, but everything just works together so well. Its definitely more than the sum of its parts, a real pleasure to read each week. For me its definitely the most consistent out of all the mangas in Jump. Its probably gonna turn into a long running shounen, but it has the advantage of having a near limitless scope. I'm not to worried about it in this case since it could go anywhere after this arc and it'd still work. Its still in its early stages but it has something a lot of other long running shounen don't: focus and pacing. So if you're still reading this review, than go pick up Mago. Bear with the beginning because it'll pay off tenfolds later.
Solid 8's all around (minus the art, which gets a 9 from me).
Story: Nurarihyon no Mago (or Mago for short since I never remember how to spell the Nurarihyon part) is the perfect example of a story that takes time to get really good. It begins with an introduction of our main protagonist, Rikuo Nura, who is a demon...or kinda. He's human, but 1/4 of him is part youkai (/ayakashi/demon). The beginning of the manga really tends to focus on his human life which sort of makes the series boring. I don't know about you, but when I read a series in WSJ, I
expect a lot of action (unless of course it's one of those ecchi/romance/school settings which this clearly isn't just by looking at the cover xD). As the story goes on, Rikuo learns about what it takes to truly take over the Nura clan from his grandfather. He starts to meet more youkai and they grow to respect and follow him. As the manga goes on, the human aspect of Rikuo's life takes a back seat to his inner demon. We get more battles, more in-depth training sessions, and tons of new characters.
Art: Personally, I love the art for this series...especially towards where it currently is when I'm writing this (chapter 96). The demons are very well detailed and the settings are extremely well done. I'm not one to be picky on art, but I really like the backgrounds this story has.
Character: Well, there are many characters in this series. The great part is that you do get back story on them as the manga continues. Sure, with so many characters not everyone has been covered yet, but as I said before, this series really has improved.
Enjoyment: Towards the beginning, my enjoyment for this series wasn't that high. However, it really has become a good shounen series and I'm really enjoying it. If you aren't aware of the way Weekly Shounen Jump does things, they rank their series in the Table of Contents. Ever since the current arc of this series has started, Mago has been ranking high and getting color pages here and there. It's amazing and really nice to see.
If you enjoy a good shounen series that progresses nicely in time, then try out this series. It's a weekly series and it IS scanlated weekly so you don't have to wait long. Hell, there's even an anime adaptation coming this July. So look out for that!
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