Sep 25, 2014
Tobei is just a little kid when he's forced to stand up for himself in order to survive in a reality where nobody cares about him. On the contrary, he is looked down upon and considered scum. He grows up being remembered every single day how much of a curse he is and completely by himself, heedless of what affection is. To live on he can't do without scavenging for food and stealing, harming or even killing all those who attempt on his own life. The time to pay the piper for all his wrongdoings soon arrives and he is publicly beheaded, but this deed
doesn't put him out of misery: hell is awaiting for him. There, Tobei is steadily undergoing terrible punishments. Although many years go by, he doesn't show the minimal sign whatsoever of repent and relentlessly tries to find a way out. The story starts when he is given a second chance: he is handed over a powerful wooden stick named Togari and dispatched back to Earth to collect 108 evil spirits within 108 days. Provided he succeeds in this feat, he will be freed.
The original concept may not be unheard of, still I kind of like it and believe it offers plenty of interesting ideas for the development. I thought many times that such a story, if rendered more mature and darker, could have made it a great manga. Nevertheless, what's important here is the actual use the author made of it and what this manga really is like.
First and foremost, I am not fond of this genre; you may not agree with me, but most of the times I wind up dealing with never-ending series which, at best, after a (little) while no longer spark my interest, and at worst never do so to begin with. In general, what I can't stand is them dragging their feet, aimlessly wandering around and leading astray even after a promising beginning (such a waste!). Instead, I must admit Togari positively surprised me. Truthfully speaking, the story is not that intriguing, after all there are no sizeable turn of events and it is chock-full of fights, but it was well directed and not shoddy afterall. Despite it traces the typical shounen pattern, it is totally devoid of fillers: everything inserted in the story has a precise purpose and accordingly the story itself doesn't drift away from the main objective, resulting in a flowing and overall quite pleasant reading. As a matter of fact it didn't excessively protract itself and drew to an end pretty early, so that a sequel was required to answer the unsolved questions.
The author tried hard to bestow a certain “thickness” on each character, especially on the protagonist, so they could appear more human. This goal is mostly pursued by flashbacks, which slowly deepen the background and guide the storyline. Regardless, I am not satisfied as for this aspect, because there are many characters left kind of stereotyped and lacking, but all considered Togari is not as shallow and empty as one might figure before giving a stab at it.
The art style is not bad, but a more detailed one would have been way more fitting and catchy.
I'd recommend it to this genre's lovers seeking for an undemanding title, otherwise steer clear!
What did you think of this review?