There are as many people on Earth as there are stars in the sky. Milkyway-a peculiar cat with a pattern of the Milky Way splashed across her back-travels across time and space; sometimes to observe, other times to interact with an unfolding story. From Sirial, the creator of One Fine Day, comes the full-color tale of Milkyway hitchhiking across the bright stars of people’s lives, loves, tears, and laughter.
I've got to say, I'm kind of disappointed at how unknown this little gem is to the community. I picked up the first volume on a whim and I'm having a lot of trouble finding the second one. This is a series I reaaally want to own.
Milkyway Hitchhiking is about a special, vain little cat named Milkyway who has lovely star-patterned fur, thus her namesake. She's been around since, seemingly, the beginning of mankind, having had many masters and witnessed a myriad different little tales over the years. She "hitchhikes" from master to master, and sort of acts like a semi-omniscient observer over all the
people she encounters, and tries to lend a helping paw or comforting presence to anyone she takes a liking to. Milkyway acts as a narrator of sorts throughout the first volume, but there's a huge shift in focus in the second volume where she is treated more as a character than the storyteller.
The manga doesn't have an overarching plot, so far as I've read. Each chapter features a new set of characters in a different time period and setting. Some stories are heartwarming, others dramatic, others comical, but every single one always has that same little charm that I can't quite explain. You're probably not going to be blown away by the ingenuity of these stories, but I don't think that's the author's intention anyway. This is more a serial focusing on personal connections between people, pets, etc. with Milkyway bridging the gap between time and space and love (awwwww). That isn't to say that none of the stories are particularly well written - many of them are, and I'd be lying if I said I didn't leave this one feeling touched.
The main thing you're going to notice about this manhwa, which is the reason I strongly recommend picking up a physical volume for yourself, is that eveeery single page is in full colour, glossy glory. I love black and white manga and comics too, but I really appreciate such stand-out art work when the artist has been able to put the time in to make it. Milkyway has a watercolour feel to it as well, and I totally eat that shit up. So very pastel, so lovely. To put it more eloquently, even if you don't enjoy this manhwa for the storytelling, you should still buy yourself a volume just to look at it. I will note, after reading the second volume, that Milkyway's design, as well as the design of human characters, seems to change just slightly enough to be noticeable. It's not in a bad way, but it's worth noting.
I'll admit, this isn't a very substantial manhwa, but it really deserves more attention than it has right now. At this moment, I haven't found any free digital versions on the web, but Yen Press has an app you can use, and I'm sure it'll let you get a look at this one. Other than that, Amazon sells it for almost $10 CAD less than normal retailers, so I would highly recommend ordering online. I know, I know, most of us would prefer to try before we buy, but if we all put our pennies in maybe we can make this one more readily available to future fans! Please give it a try.