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May 21, 2022
Mixed Feelings
More than your ordinary humdrum peek into the merciless world of Yakuza. It is, by all means electric, even if its momentum abruptly weakens towards the end. The entire piece is carried on the main character's back. His impenetrable personality and idealism devoid of circuitousness make him an anomaly of a character, yet still possesses a faint resemblance to his predecessors.

It had an abundance of fertile soil to create a formidable piece of a character study, but the lack of proper care caused it to -- unfortunately -- wither away. Nonetheless, a work worth one's time even if disappointment is unavoidable.
Apr 29, 2022
A one-trick pony with uncanny performance, albeit doesn't quite achieve that wow moment. The outre' presentation is simply sidelined by an unremarkable plot carried out by vapid characters. There is little enjoyment to be drawn from it since it appears to be flummoxed about what it wants to be, while at the same time encapsulated into an impassionate and cold surface whose cracks offer hardly any surprises.

Examples of a simple story spiced up by a crafty execution are out there, but this one does not meet the criteria. That is unless the attempt itself makes it worthwhile in someone's book.
Feb 28, 2022
Mixed Feelings
Mayhap a bit of a wink, or a pat on the shoulder for all the Hokuto no Ken enthusiasts out there, albeit it could also be seen as a shameless utilization of an already known-to-work formula. Whichever of the two is more plausible, it matters little in terms of improvement for narrative mediocrity.

There's a bit of an educational input based on the fact that the work is centered around the Edo Period. However, that realism quickly diminishes once the characters demonstrate supernatural skills and survivability. Not to say that the panels of heads blown to pieces do not offer diabolical satisfaction, but at a ...
Feb 4, 2022
Akame (Manga) add
Faced with continuous atrocities performed by their feudal lord it is only a matter of time before someone decides to take justice into their own hands. Such a task befalls a peasant with no aptitude for martial arts, who instead carries out a meticulous plan for ruination of his oppressor.

This descent into merciless times of feudal Japan has an almost opera-like feel to it. With characters that lack any memorable individuality but instead represent the collective oppression. There is some parallelism between this fictional world and that of today's, albeit not to such an extreme extent, but in the author's time it was most ...
Jan 23, 2022
An abominable attempt at a remake of the already questionable source material. Think of it as a sacrificial lamb that created a path for a more famous work of this author.

The supposed provocativeness of the plot is based on "perversion" of Christianity's core, albeit tackled in such a clunky and juvenile manner that even the most overzealous believers will remain indifferent. Perhaps its effectiveness would have held better somewhere around the witch hunt period, but not nowadays.

Despite that the idea essentially had a lot of potential, it is mutilated by various absurdities and utter lack of subtlety. For example, robots which were all ...
Jan 17, 2022
An odd fusion, the kind that can only be remembered for its redundancy. Not even the deliciously depicted meals can distract from the farcical attempt to present them in a lady-of-the-week format.

Despite that Tohru is known to dance on the border of the perverse it still comes off as a disappointment that he -- established in humorous achievements -- would resort to such a sleazily ostentatious way to attract audience. Given the peculiar nature of this work's female characters, perhaps it will serve as a suitable substitution if your local strip bar is closed. Otherwise, it is just a tasteless vichyssoise of style over ...
Jan 5, 2022
Gorin no Sho (Manga) add
Best to be avoided by anyone who seeks a samurai-ish escapade; this is more of an educational tackle, uncanny for this particular medium. Nonetheless, commendable for its effort to present source material in such a simplified - more accessible way.

It is definitely reader friendly, but ostensibly appears as if it was made for children. The art is done in a very innocent manner, accompanied by an adorable educational proxy who tries to explain more intricate parts. For that very reason it could repel more mature readers. Fortunately, those who put aside preconceived notions will be awarded by a work that successfully touches upon the ...
Apr 30, 2021
Sensibly orchestrated story which successfully evokes inspiration. Not perfect in its execution, as it falls -- to an extent -- victim to usual tropes of such attempts, but its sincerity, and pacifistic yet ecstatic nature will hardly leave one unfazed.

Character's are drawn without any ostentation to them, with merely necessary difference to tell them apart. It could be classed as a flaw, if it weren't for the beautiful and vivid scenery in which they're set. It never detracts from their importance, but instead protrudes them as focal points. Hidenori's artistic mastery is best seen in how he manipulates panels. He increases - decreases their ...
Apr 18, 2021
Wendy (Manga) add
Appears to be more of an escapism meant for the author himself than the reader. It moves onto an already predetermined path that any fairy tale enthusiast will be familiar with. However, this is Jiro after all; Peter Pan resembles a Mad Max bandit on his way to the anarchistic version of Neverland - filled with rebellious teens in obsessive pursuit of pleasure.

Narrative weaknesses are ameliorated by vivacious visuals. It is evident Jiro enjoyed this one to the fullest. Pen strokes are chaotic and hard as ever, and panels can barely hold the amount of ink put into them; they threaten to explode in ...
Apr 8, 2021
Wolfsmund (Manga) add
Mixed Feelings
It carries a sense of freshness at the start, albeit sooner or later moves onto a fixed trajectory - the kind that is predictable in its uncertainty. The initial shock slowly diminishes over the course of this work, even more so upon the realization that characters are basically cannon fodder for author's own convenience.

It does contain a certain dose of realism and very much stays loyal to the period which it represents. It is evident author did meticulous research on medieval times. However, that same realism quickly disappears in close-quarter scenes where temporary main characters receive a "supernatural" boost in their skills. A cheap ...