Saint☆Oniisan is slice-of-life or divine-life, tale of Jesus and Buddha as they try to experience the modern world, in this case, Japan. The manga places a funny twist on religion, attitudes, culture and customs in Japan through the eyes of Jesus and Buddha.
You see Jesus and Buddha experiencing Asakusa, public baths, theme parks, and the internet. Throughout the manga, we get a little history of their divine greatness only to see their apparent insignificance in modern Japanese society. Suffice to say, before people can recognize that they're actually Jesus and Buddha, people think of them as someone who looks like Johnny Depp or a guy with a button on his forehead. For real.
a) Easily offended
b) Studiously religious in either Christianity or Bhuddism
c) Consider any humour about religion or religiousicons to be blasphemous
d) An idiot who won't get the joke
Moving on swiftly......
WRONG, WRONG, WRONG, WRONG, WRONG. That's what this manga is. Very, very, wrong, but in such a deliciously divisive, amazingly anarchic, furiously funny, and exceptionally entertaining way.
Saint Young Men is a manga by Nakamura Hikaru that was serialised in Kodansha's Morning 2 manga magazine in 2007.
Okay, the basic concept is that after the turn of the millenium, Jesus and Buddha decide to take a break from the heavenly lifestyle (and
ensuring the world didn't end), and return to earth for a while on an extended vacation. They end up sharing an apartment in Japan, and are slowly becoming familiar with the vibrant new world of the 21st century.
The story is basically slice of life, but with a very surreal, and very humourous difference. Don't expect this to be anything like YKK, Aqua or Aria. This is a devilishly different slice of life manga, and because of it's twisted take on such iconic figures, it may offend a number of people who read it. Thankfully, I'm not one of those people as I'm not easily offended and I like my humour to be a little more warped than normal.
The art style is very clean, and quite detailed. The backdrops, scenery, towns, etc, are all very detailed and well drawn. The character designs are very well done, although Buddha and Jesus are fairly limited design wise (Jesus wears a crown of thorns and Buddha's hair is like a statue's). Even with this though, Nakamura has managed to breathe life into the characters, making them by turns inquisitive, caring, joyful, terrified, etc, etc. The characters display awide variety of emotions that are easily readable without any text or sound effects - a testament to Nakamura's ability to draw exressions.
As far as character's go, one would think that Jesus and Buddhawould be fairly limited. Not so! They are comedy characters par excellence, and the two mesh extremely well as they spend their days just loitering around and generally hanging out. The side characters haven'tall been introduced yet though, so I can't comment on them, but the two main characters are strongenough to drive the story forward without the need for support.
This is a great series to read if you're bored or justlooking for something new and funny. It is to manga, what Gintama is to anime, and the manga pays homage to Gintama by lscattering references here and there. Osamu Tezuka's Buddha also gets mentioned, ironically enough.
It's rare for me to rave about a manga or anime, but this is one of the few occasions where I'll make my judgement based on 3 chapters. This is an exceptionally funny take on the slice of life genre, and even though it may offend some people, I would heartily recommend it to anyone.
If Jesus and Buddha were as cool in RL as they are in the mange, then we'd all be following them already :)
Actually, as someone who considers himself a Christian theist, I thoroughly enjoy[ed] this series. 'Suspension of belief' is required, but this is the way for most books/movies regardless.
Do I find this manga offensive?
Not in the slightest.
Perhaps quite the contrary, this is a very enjoyable, and rather lightweight .. story [used loosely] about Jesus and Buddha sharing a apartment. Other than the obvious religious themed jokes [i.e Buddha winning a giant statue of Buddah at Disneyland, Jesus being afraid to swim (hence walking on water)], it manages to develop a interesting relationship between the two.
It's religious deity buddy comedy manga at it's finest.
I'm not a religious person, but I had learned Buddhism and Christianity. I think I can really enjoy the gag because I can see from both point of view.
This series use gag by secretly use "miracle" that comes from both religion that maybe unnoticed by another one, and in unpredictable way(like when the cat comes to them when Jesus unintentionally say that they're lack of food---taken from Jataka tales, but it should be rabbit though).
I think this story flow naturally and ridiculously funny, but it can be offend some fanatic believer.