Ryo Saeba is a "sweeper" in the city of Tokyo. His works as a trouble shooter, cleaning the streets of vermin, and helping out desperate people. Sometimes he's a bodyguard, sometimes he's an assassin, whatever Ryo does he does it well. In fact his only flaw is his hormones - he loves the ladies and sometimes turns into an idiot when he's near them. Thankfully he's got people like his partner Kaori Makimura to keep him in check.
City Hunter is a cover name for Saeba Ryo, at the first glance a lecherous man in his late 20s, highly skilled with guns, and agility of Spider-man. He works as a sweeper, a cleaning man for all the vice in the underworld, and occasional hit-man for hire only if the client's story touches his heart. You can find him by leaving a message „XYZ“ on the blackboard located in the Shinjuku Station. He will find you, and if he likes you, you'll see him. He works with his partner Makimura Hideyuki, and after few initial chapters Hideyuki's
character is replaced with Makimura Kaori (Hideyuki's sister), and that is where the fun begins.
The manga is divided into many arcs where Ryo take the job of saving lady in distress, protect lady in distress pretending to be a man, getting wasted, and a lot of „Mokkori“. His mokkori is the biggest drive one could have, power of unknown magnitude, and the reason for doing stuff. No mokkori, no right mood. The story is predictable, but it's done with style.
Art is so much into the realism. As the manga progress, you can really see how much Hojo improved his skill. There are much detail into characters clothes, their weapons, environment - way how sun is shining through the trees, leaving the feeling like you're outside and watching how nature talks. And, that is all black, white, and in the various shades of grey.
CH characters? Funny - yes, strong - yes, from time to time annoying - yes, skilled - yes, having unusual fears - oh, yes, carrying heavy equipment in the form of 100t+ hammer - yup, we have all that. They are quite unique. Characters are connected, and they can't imagine life without one another. The best way to show how they interact is in one chapter where Ryo tells Kaori the thing or two about friends or enemies (in the City Hunter there is a thin line about who's your friend, and who's your enemy): „You're wrong! Haven't you read Hokuto no Ken? Strong enemies are your friends “ - she reads too little. Ryo and Kaori? It's all about love. Because in the end, City Hunter are those two.
Basic thing is, this is a hilarious manga. For me a comedy at its best. But it is more than just a comedy. Towards the end, manga takes turn to a more serious way of storytelling. Kaori's „hammer time“ is almost nonexistent, many things from Kaori's and Ryo's past came on the surface. Mixing those things with the amazing soundtrack from the City Hunter anime made them irresistible for me.
All in all, this was a great piece of work. For those who like this type of comedy and action, with mysterious main character who's acting funny for the sake of cover-up, is a great thing to read.
City Hunter is the first manga I have read, even before Dragon Ball Z, and that's why it's leaves me a good memory, it's the manga with which I laugh the most. We go easily from one emotion to another, following the adventures of Nicky Larson, a silly man with girls, but serious with his weapon. This series has so marked me, that I have the complete series, except for a few movies I miss them, but I have all the seasons, and it's really worth, the replicas of Nicky and Mammoth (Opponent and Friend at a time, paradoxical, I know) are unforgettable, or even
bandits with ridiculous replicas that mark a person for life "I'm going to send you a dumpling" for "I'm going to kill you", I always have it head, and I go out often, so much is striking. The intrigues and adventures are really involved, we are sometimes surprised by the end, and the episode goes so fast that we chained at a frantic pace!
I really think that this manga is a must, or at least watch a few episodes to make an opinion for the most reluctant, this animated is not very long, 4 seasons, and some movies and OAVs. I think even start the series in book, it would seem that they are good, so I will let me tempt soon!
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