May 3, 2009
Tanequil (All reviews)
Some seinen manga, I believe, take the meaning too far. The gore and nudity found in them is simply disturbing, no longer artistic, just omnipresent and absolutely in-your-face.

Vagabond is not like those seinen manga.

From the beginning, Vagabond has this strange allure to it. Drawn to this manga by the promise of awesome fight scenes, [oh yes, I assure you, you will not be disappointed by the fight scenes], you find yourself hooked to this manga.

Absolutely, completely, utterly, hooked.

It starts off with a rather rude and yet beautiful jerk, depicting the scene of a battlefield in splendid watercolor. The manga just rides on from there, rising from peak to peak. The fights get better, and the character himself grows. He grows realistically, he stumbles, he falls, he falls so hard that he finds it difficult to get back onto his feet, he takes the wrong path, goes the wrong way, makes the wrong enemies, and kills the wrong people, but he gets back up, and the story continues.

It is just so completely believable, so persuasive and so artistic all at the same time that with this manga just feels so raw and yet so real.

The main character, who one will find it hard to identify with on the surface, has something deep within him that every single one of us can possibly understand and aspire towards.

His growth and development, in more ways than just of the sword, but yet at the same time never truly leaving the sword, are so simple and yet so spectacular at the same time. He manages to bring out the best in some people and the worst in others, brushing past some like a whirlwind and crashing headlong into others, leaving behind a trail of death, destruction, and new life. All this happens while he himself is still growing, and while he is nowhere near perfect, there is just something so addictive about getting to know more about him.

And getting to know more about the main character is exactly what this entire manga is about. It is about seeing Miyamoto Musashi through the eyes of the world, through the eyes of others, and through his own eyes.

With a brilliant blend of flashbacks, flashforwards and glimpses into the lives of others besides those who surround the main character, Vagabond paints a rich picture of the samurai scene in the time of Miyamoto Musashi, the main character.

If you have been hesitating about reading a seinen manga, hesitate no more.

Vagabond will open your eyes to a brilliant new genre.