Growing older is pretty rough and Kenji is finding out just how hard it can be as life starts wearing down on him. On top of trying to make ends meet running a convenience store he has to care for the niece that his missing sister left in his care. Memories of youth make it easier, until those memories come back to haunt him
Picking up directly after the events of 20th Century Boys, it seems like the world is finally out of danger, but the mystery of "Friend" still exists. As the world is threatened again, Kenji must search his memories for any clue about "Friend".
20th Century Boys and 21st Century Boys' combined storyline won the Grand Prize at the 37th Japan Cartoonist Awards on May 9, 2008.
VIZ Media published the series in English under the VIZ Signature imprint from January 15, 2013 to March 19, 2013. It was also published in Brazilian Portuguese by Panini Comics/Planet Manga from June to September 2016.
Surprised that no one has reviewed this, while it may not be at the same level of 20th Century Boys, it's only two volumes, it's the ending, and it's a great read despite it's short length. If anything I am a little disappointed that it didn't show us a bit more of an "aftermath" to things, I was particularly begging for Friend to have a good reason for what he was doing, but it never came. 21st Century Boy simply wraps up the story of 20th Century Boys story, starting off with the concert that we saw near the end of 20th Century Boys, and
leading us into the events we saw on the final page. 21st Century Boy is short, but intriguing and satisfying ending to the great series created by the genius mind of Naoki Urasawa.
The story is directly finishing the events that happens in "The New Book of Prophecies" and finishes up all the mysteries of "who friend was?" and "who replaced him?" and the relationship between the people who were directly involved with the friend personality. I don't want to give away to many spoilers, though if you're reading this I assume you've already finished 20th Century Boys, in which case, get your ass out that in read the sequel. The story is similar to 20th Century Boys, but is more answers, and has the interesting way of searching the past to find out what to do in the present that was presented in 20th Century Boys, just taken to higher levels here. If you like the story of 20th Century Boys, you don't have to worry about this, it's a great sequel with a compelling story.
As expected from anyone familiar with 20th Century Boys, this one is filled with great artwork, and will make you actually want to take a second to look at the great artwork that Urasawa turns out in this story. The character's still aren't nesscairaly attractive, but it doesn't matter, the artwork is filled with detail and beauty on the character's, and is amazing to behold. Truly a genius to both write and draw this, the artwork gets a ten out of ten here, the only ten I gave in the review stats.
The character's presented in 21st Century Boys are all characters we have seen before, but this time we get to take a deeper look on the children through Kenji's interaction through them, and we also get to see some of Friend's old servants on a deeper level as well. Mainly it is particularly Kenji and the villains of the past series that shine in this, as they are the focus of the story, and prove for some extremely interesting angles in the story, especially the interaction between the people of Friends, and seeing how there are things they change on and things that stay the same.
Overall, 21st Century Boys proves to further answer the final events in the New Book of Prophecies, but not much after that. We get a nice little conversation at the end to, but I did feel like there were some loose ties in there, like all the talk of a "confession" between two of the character's never go anywhere, it certainly feels like an incomplete ending, but is still satisfying at that. I guess to sum it up it felt like there should have been another chapter, and that was just the end to a good chapter. Of course you should read it right after 20th Century Boys, and you shouldn't even have to read this to decide that, but if you did, I hope this helped you to decide to read this great series.
This is more of like a gift from the author to those who wanted more. It gave a feeling of making amends, saying sorry, doing things right for the second time.
I thought this sequel weakened the story a bit. It has more scenes from when they were kids, which gave some answers but at the same time also raised a few more questions.
It also shows a bit of how the relationships between the characters evolved from when they were kids to now that they are older. Even Yukari and Kenji are hinted at being more than friends, after all this time.
I still feel like the
series hasn't ended yet, this makes me want to reread the whole series all over again