Thursday, 27 November 2014

Tawara Cat Chapters 30-35 review

Tawara Cat Chapters 30-35 Story & Art by Torako Hidaka Review

The comedy connects more often than not in this set of chapters. Tawara Cat is one of the more bizarre series I’ve read in execution at least. Visually the series is appeasing with really nice full colour artwork. The colours are subdued enough that it is not eye popping yet not dull either. What little plot there was in earlier chapters seems to have evaporated though. In conclusion I would say the comedy and artwork make these chapters worth at least a glance through. The series may not be to everyone’s taste but it is a pleasant quirky read regardless.

Space Brothers Chapters 188-240 review

Space Brothers Chapters 188-240 by Chuya Koyama Review

With each span of chapters the series improves upon its already excellent base. It excels in every aspect. One thing I had not noticed before was just how varied the character designs look. Each character in the cast is distinct in both visual and personality ways.  Koyama’s artwork is really gorgeous and detailed and seems to keep improving still. The only issue I have at this point is the pacing which drags a touch which may be off-putting to some. That being said this is a rather trivial problem and Koyama makes the pacing work to the comic’s advantage.

What really shines in these chapters is the character development and growth of both the main and ever expanding supporting cast. This is something the series as a whole is great at but I have only really come to appreciate the full breadth of it recently. Is the fight to save the ISS. It really drives home the message about the power of true friendship and is anchored by the lingering subplot about Sharon’s deteriorating health. It brings out a wide range of emotions in the reader. In conclusion I would say Space Brothers is a pleasure to read and is well worth the time investment. 

Wednesday, 26 November 2014

Intersect issue 1 review

Intersect issue 1 Review

From the publisher: “Blood rains from the skies. A hypnotic voice trills over the airwaves as bodies shift and grow in horrifying new directions. Are you ready for the new world? RAY FAWKES, acclaimed creator of One Soul and writer of Constantine and Batman: Eternal, launches a terrifying monthly odyssey of madness and warped flesh in this lush, fully painted debut issue!”

If one derives enjoyment from Intersect it would most likely visually rather than plot. Visual wise it is like nothing I have ever seen before. The comic’s layout makes it a confusing read. Matters are not helped with the fact that the story begins midway into what appears to be the plot. The audience is thus forced to weave their way between the poor panel planning and piecing together the narrative. That said the artwork is gorgeous it is clear a lot of effort was put into the painted artwork. In conclusion I would say purchase this issue for its artwork as it is really something special. There really is little point in attempting gain an understanding of the plot though. 

Monday, 24 November 2014

E-Robot Chapter 1 review

E-Robot Chapter 1 story & art by Ryohei Yamamoto Review

From the publisher: “Yuuki's got a crush he's just dying to confess his love to. There's just one problem, he can't do it! Every time he tries, he freezes up! But his life really takes a turn when he bumps into, or gets clobbered by, a robotic girl with a most impressive set of "features." Her name is Ai Roborovskii and she's the world's first Erotic Robot!”

This might be the most putrid thing I’ve ever read. None of the jokes connected and the whole affair was so shameless I honestly had to force myself to keep reading on to the next page. I could go on all day about the sexism. While another recently started title in the magazine this runs in was at least campy enjoyment (which is admittedly a guilty pleasure for me) this series is not even that. With each failing gag that passed had me feeling more and more uncomfortable. In conclusion I would say skip this series there is next to nothing to recommend here.

Sunday, 23 November 2014

Winter Woods Chapter 0 review

Winter Woods Chapter 0 Story by Cosmos, Art by Van Ji Review

From the publisher: “A few thousand years has passed since an alchemist created Winter. He is now living with Jane learning what it means to be alive as a human.”

In this premiere chapter the artwork when visible is truly stunning however, perhaps because of the grim nature of the story, little artwork is shown. Yet Winter Woods truly is captivating. The actual plot proper for the series isn’t giving much away in the prologue. The series seems to being paying homage to Frankenstein or at the very least derives from it. In conclusion if you enjoy horror I would say read this chapter. It is a quick and engrossing read though it should be noted it is rather dark so keep that in mind.

Investor Z Chapter 2-10 review

Investor Z Chapter 2-10 Story & Art by Norifusa Mita Review

Any concerns I had about the series dipping in excitement after its first chapter were washed away in this group of chapters. The premise is far more compelling than I initially thought and the series is filled with twists and turns. The character designs still fell off. That being said the background art is gorgeous though perhaps not quite on par with creators such as Kazue Kato. The series seems to be playing with the question on the morality of money and the wealthy though it is only brought up in imagery from time to time. In conclusion if you are like me and enjoy series that take a potentially dull subject matter such as the stock market but manage to make it fascinating I would say give these chapters a read. 

Saturday, 22 November 2014

Investor Z Chapter 1 review

Investor Z Chapter 1 Story & Art by Norifusa Mita Review

From the publisher: “Mita Norifusa, whose "Dragon Zakura" started a revolution in Japan's world of entrance exams, now brings you another school-drama manga about stock investments! Zaizen Takashi passes his entrance exams at the top of the heap, and starts his first year in junior high school at Dojuku Gakuen, a 130-year old super-advanced institute of higher education. The day after the entrance ceremony, "the secret" of the school is revealed to him, which concerns the existence of an”

What begins as a rather tensionless awkwardly drawn premiere chapter gradually escalates into a much more compelling plot about investing. I am curious to see where the manga goes from here. The artwork is not without issue: characters frequently go off model. That being said the potential for the plot not to mention the excellent writing make at the very least sampling the series a must!

One-Punch Man Chapters 37.4-39 review

One-Punch Man Chapters 37.4-39 Story by ONE, Art by Yusuke Murata Review

With these chapters the conflict begins to deescalate momentarily only to rise even further by the last chapter of the group. Murata’s artwork is gorgeous as per usual. The only problem I had was the lull between arcs which diffused some of the tension. The plot is also gradual as the series is more art based. It was nice seeing development of a side character however. Really there are far more positive than negative aspects to the series. It was also cool to see an old face from the earlier chapters return as well. In conclusion I would say read these chapters; the art and plot make it well worth the read!

Friday, 21 November 2014

Hi-Fi Cluster Chapters 9-10 review

Hi-Fi Cluster Chapters 9-10 story & art by Ippei  Goto Review

For fans of battle manga Hi-Fi Cluster is comfort food. These chapters continue that trend. Complete with ridiculous (in a good way) antagonists and slick action scenes. The series seems to be unfortunately barreling towards the final battles as what appears to be the big bad is introduced this chapter. Peta proves to be of little use at this point (if he ever was). The supporting cast continues to be the primary reason to continue reading this series. A colorful group which seems largely ignored outside of our other lead in this battle. In conclusion I would say read these chapters as they are the series at its most compelling. 

Nisekoi Chapter 147 review

Nisekoi Chapter 147 story & art by Naoshi Komi Review

Nisekoi continues being a mosquito bite with this week’s chapter. Initially it was just annoying but over time after scratching it so much it began to hurt. Yui’s and Raku’s creepy relationship continues to develop with this week’s chapter. This series leaves such little impact on me. It continues introducing characters and adding padding. It’s sad when the source material is roughly 30% filler. This week isn’t so bad but others much moreso. All this to delay the series’ conclusion which because of Yui could probably have been reached by now. This is pretty much typical indulgent male romance fanasties barring the decreased fan service. In conclusion I would say skip this week’s chapter of Nisekoi. It concentrates on the series’ creepier facets and is the series at its most indulgent. 

World Trigger Chapter 83 review

World Trigger Chapter 83 Story & Art by Daisuke Ashihara Review

This chapter is essentially an epilogue to the battle introducing yet another character and bookending the arc yet also introducing plot elements that should propel the series forward in the future. It was nice seeing some more character development and fleshing out the relationships of the core cast. This chapter really is devoid of much tension though. I feel it is also worth noting that though I read this series each week I find details slip from memory within a day or two. In conclusion I would say read this chapter if only for the development for the cast. 

Wednesday, 19 November 2014

Food Wars! Chapters 93-95 review

Reviews of the earlier chapters will come later down the road.

Food Wars! Chapters 93-95 Story by Yuto Tsukuda, Art by Shun Saeki Review

These chapters of Food Wars! are remarkably fan service free. They also contain a wealth of information on food. For me they were a great read. As a lover of food it is fun reading manga about it. The series has its issue: it can be a touch dull at times with little to no action. That being said, the characters are bright and colorful and the art is surprisingly slick.  Also of note in these chapters is the tension despite little actual conflict actually ensuing on the page. The pacing has some issues though. The series seems to be at a hault presently. A far cry from the first volume which had a more rapid fire pace. In conclusion I would say read these chapters if only for the information on food. The series itself is, like the best of food, highly addictive.

Takujo no Ageha Chapter 1 review

Takujo no Ageha Chapter 1 Story & Art by Itsuki  Furuya Review

From the publisher: “If you had any doubts about a ping pong manga, you can table your doubts because this one's got a hilarious spin. It'll have you bouncing from laughter one minute then slam you with intense competition the next. Get ready to be served some hilarious manga and have a ball! Just had to get all those ping pong puns out of the onto the actual manga description. Ririka Otsuka's the hottest chick in school, but she has a secret—she lives at a table tennis center! And her grandpa's nuts about the sport, but she could care less! Enter Ageha Hanazono, a table tennis genius who shows zero interest in sexy Ririka, much to her chagrin. These two couldn't be more different, but their paths are linked as they both find out the hard way!”

Despite, or perhaps due to, the subject matter the first chapter of Takujo no Ageha is a delightful read! That’s not to say it is perfect; it has its issues. Namely the poor characterization of the female lead as boy obsessed. This is not even beginning to cover the fan service which is mercifully kept to a handful of pages. That being said, the action scenes are slick and the series has enough of a plot to maintain itself for quite some time. The art is also a positive. This series looks really nice thus far. It is clear a lot of effort was put into this debut chapter. So in all I would say read Takujo no Ageha even if you have an aversion to fan service this series has plenty to offer!

Wednesday, 12 November 2014

For Peace Chapter 1 review

For Peace Chapter 1 Story & Art by Alexis Cooke

For Peace’s first chapter excels in every aspect and proves itself to be a fantastic LGBT comic along with Cooke’s previous work Dinner Ditz. The artwork differentiates itself from the majority of other comics while still being accessible. The character designs are far more human than any work I have seen to date. As with Dinner Ditz, the first chapter of For Peace is rather rose-tinted; a welcome change as the majority of LGBT media seems to go for a more gritty approach. Cooke is quickly proving to be an author I will anticipate the future works of. Again as with Dinner Ditz my only complaint is that the series is not full-length as it is very refreshing in the current media landscape to see genuine warm positivity. 

Tuesday, 11 November 2014

Windrose Chapter 3 review

Windrose Chapter 3 Story & Art by Studio Kosen Review

Windrose’s art continues to be its biggest selling point. It really is gorgeous visually. Narrative wise it is nice to see some character development and world building. While this may be the weakest of Sparkler Monthly’s comic offerings it is only in comparison to their other series. I find I am far more invested in the series now than I was at the beginning as we start to get into the grander plot. While I still feel the protagonist is not a terribly strong character the morally ambiguous supporting cast is really compelling. In conclusion I would say read this chapter as it really highlight what makes the series great thus far.

Gatesmith Chapter 3 review

Gatesmith Chapter 3 Story & Art by Jen Lee Quick Review

Gatesmith is quickly growing into one of my favorite series period. The level of imagination in it is high and I found the characters are growing more and more on me. This chapter sees some interesting plot developments. I really have no complaints about this chapter. The series continues to be original in execution and tone. Quick’s artwork is really slick as well. In conclusion I would say read this chapter as this series continues to prove to be truly great! 

Monday, 10 November 2014

Dinner Ditz Parts 1, 2, and Halloween Special review

Dinner Ditz Parts 1, 2, and Halloween Special Story & Art By Alexise Cooke Review

                From the publisher: “Peregrine, a divorced dad, is a disaster in the kitchen. He’s a threat to himself and all those around him, including his beloved daughter, Lottie. So it’s up to Otho, a recent victim of Peregrine’s cooking chaos, to step in and show him how it’s done, so he can wow Lottie instead of terrifying her the next time she visits!”

                Dinner Ditz is an adorable LGBT comic. It left me wanting more even after the very last page. It is refreshing seeing an LGBT comic about compelling family dynamics. That’s not to say the romance is bad by any stretch. It is easily my favorite part of the book! The series also has a different art style which is refreshing in an industry where artwork tends to lean towards homogenous. In conclusion, Dinner Ditz is a great if brief read. If you are looking for a different kind of LGBT media this will not disappoint!

World Trigger Chapters 80-82 review

World Trigger Chapters 80-82 Story & Art by Daisuke Ashiahara Review

                After many MANY months the biggest battle in World Trigger to date draws to a close and it ends on a resoundingly great note! It is nice to see the protagonist fleshed out more in the final of this set of chapters. The battle had actual casualties which is surprising for such an early point in a Jump series. World Trigger continues to prove it is more interesting than it initially appeared and has grown into a compelling narrative. I am super excited to see what future chapters have in store!

Seraph of the End Chapter 27 review

Seraph of the End Chapter 27 Storyboard by Daisuke Furuya, Story by Takaya Kagami, Art by Yamato Yamamoto Review

                Seraph suffers from dull characters thus far. This has become increasingly apparent over time. The novelty has started to wear off and the series has started to show its flaws. This is not helped by the inevitable plot being ground to a hault. We must suffer through dull banter for much of the chapter before seeing an exposition dump clumsily thrown in. Only in the final pages do we get to see some action with a stock villain with clown make-up. This not even getting into the offensive undertones with his character. In conclusion, I would say you could probably skip to the end of this chapter unless you are truly fascinated with this world. 

Blue Exorcist Chapter 62 review

Blue Exorcist Chapter 62 Story & Art by Kazue Kato Review

Remarkably this chapter is even more resonant than the previous one. Kato’s artwork is at its peak. The plot continues to be touching and it is nice to see that the arc is drawing to a close quite well. Blue Exorcist continues to be a delight each month being one of my more anticipated series. It is worth noting though that the antagonist suffers from a lack of characterization being more cartoony and hammy than even I care for. So, in conclusion, I would say read this chapter! It features some key character development and draws the arc to its climax quite nicely. 

Nisekoi Chapters 144-146 review

Nisekoi Chapters 144-146 Story & Art by Naoshi Komi Review

Nisekoi really flexes its harem muscles in these chapters that is to say being as trite and cliché as ever perhaps even moreso. In fact, the series is almost insufferable at times. The one respite at this point is that there is a whole week between chapters giving plenty of time to recuperate. And by that I mean it is constant pain! The comedy seems to have shriveled up for the most part. It really seems as if the series is just on autopilot now. In conclusion if you have not enjoyed past chapters of Nisekoi you will find little here to change your mind. 

Hi-Fi Cluster Chapters 4-8 review

So in honour of a certain long running hugely successful manga series ending I thought I would honour it by reviewing something completely unrelated to it!

Hi-Fi Cluster Chapters 4-8 Story & Art by Ippei Goto review

These chapters of Hi-Fi Cluster see the plot proper begin to develop as well as some rather dull by comparison but still compelling chapters of character introductions. There is some clumsy exposition dumps in these chapters. Something I’m not sure I mentioned in my previous reviews. The protagonist continues to be the least compelling character and I feel was likely just included in the series for the target demographic to identify with. So all-in-all Hi-Fi Cluster is an interesting read thus far and I cannot tell express how excited I am for future chapters.