Manga Monday: Pochi Kuro by Matsumoto Naoya

This week for Manga Monday I’ve got another Quick Review. It’s Pochi Kuro by Matsumoto Naoya!

Plot Synopsis: A human girl falls into the demon realm and can’t seem to communicate with the local demon, Kuro, who found her. Humans are rare in the demon realm and many would love to eat a human…

Plot: The plot of this first chapter is pretty great, especially since Kuro and the girl can’t seem to communicate at all except through gestures. We never do get her name though in this chapter. I assume we’ll learn it later.

Characters: Kuro is a pretty hilarious male lead, as it’s pretty obvious he’s got no idea what to do when it comes to “cooking” a human. The girl is also pretty funny, although not being unable to understand her is a pit disappointing for us readers it does add to the humor of the chapter.

Art: The art is great as one would expect from a series that’s been published by Shueisha.

Overall: This looks to be an enjoyable and humorous series, definitely worth a read if you are looking for some laughs and a good plot.

For those who like: Fantasy, Drama, Romance?, Great Plot, Excellent Lead Characters, Fantastic Artwork.

Not for those who don’t like: Any of the above.

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Sensate Saturday: Fremd Torturchen by Ayasato Keishi

This week I’m back with another Quick Review for Sensate Saturday. It’s Fremd Torturchen by Ayasato Keishi!

Plot Synopsis: After dying a tragic and horrible death, Sena Kaito was reborn in another world and confronted with a peerless beauty, Elisabeth, who had appeared before his eyes. Introducing herself as “Torturchen,” she commanded Kaito to become her servant….

Plot: This first chapter’s plot was pretty messed up, and while it definitely caught my attention I’ll probably put this on my wait to be read shelf. This isn’t due to anything wrong with the series, it’s just that it looks to be a fairly depressing series on the whole, so I’m going to wait to read it until I’m not so personally stressed out.  I should also mention that this is an adaptation from a Light Novel.

Characters: Kaito is a pretty pathetic protagonist, but that is more due to his circumstances than his own faults. I’m sure he has some, but we really didn’t get to see much of those in this first chapter. Elizabeth on the other hand seems to be a little odd, and while she’s obviously not a nice and cheerful woman it’s clear that she has her own issues from her past. We didn’t really get introduced to anyone else in this chapter.

Art: The art is pretty good, while it’s not super amazing it isn’t terrible either.

Overall: If you can deal with the obvious depressing nature of the series, it might just be a good read.

For those who like: Tragedy, Horror, Drama, Intense Plot, Interesting Cast of Characters, Good Artwork.

Not for those who don’t like: Any of the above.

Manga Monday: Robot x Laserbeam by Fujimaki Tadatoshi

This week for Manga Monday I’ve got a Quick Review of a series from the creator of Kuroko no Basuke. It’s Robot x Laserbeam by Fujimaki Tadatoshi!

Plot Synopsis: When a high school boy who’s been nicknamed “Robot” due to his unemotional demeanour and lack of social skills encounters golf for the first time, his life takes a dramatic turn.

Plot: The plot isn’t quite as ridiculous as Kuroko, where Kuroko is constantly surprising people due to his lack of presence. That’s actually a good thing. Because, at least in this first chapter, everything that was shown is actually possible by normal people, given enough practice with golf. I can actually personally attest to that, as while what Robot does is not easy at all, it’s possible. I’ve been told by pretty decent golfers, including my step-father whose gotten a hole-in-one on one of the toughest golf holes I’ve ever seen and that includes really famous professional courses, that my own form is pretty good, but that I had trouble with the control of power. Most people have the problem the other way around, easy to gauge power but keeping your form in the correct stance is difficult.

Characters: Robot is a pretty emotionless guy, and while he’s noticeable unlike Kuroko they both are pretty awkward in social contexts. Tomoya, Robot’s friend is a pretty decent guy as well, although his form is pretty terrible, which Robot comments on.

Art: It’s excellent which considering who is the Mangaka and the publisher that should come as no surprise to anyone.

Overall: This is a must read for any Sports Manga fans. It might be a bit less action intense than Kuroko, but it’s still good. I wouldn’t be surprised to see an Anime of this series in a year or two.

For those who like: Sports, Golf, Excellent Plot Fantastic Characters, Amazing Artwork.

Not for those who don’t like: Any of the above.

Sensate Saturday: Hitogatana by Onigunsou

This week for Sensate Saturday I’ve got another Quick Review. It’s Hitogatana by Onigunsou!

Plot Synopsis: Crimes commited using manned combat-androids dubbed “Katana” run rampant. In an effort to maintain order, the government has organized the AKCD – “Anti Katana Crime Division.” Togusa of the 8th squad of the AKCD, continually casts himself into battle while holding existential doubts….

Plot: The plot of this first chapter was pretty interesting, and while I will be adding it to my huge backlog it’s not going to be high on the list. One thing I do want to note is that this first chapter had no massive amounts blood, but this is just the first chapter. There may very well be more later on in the series and given that it’s a Seinen series, that probability isn’t small.

Characters: Togusa is a pretty interesting male lead, but there is a bit too much mystery to his character for my tastes in this first chapter. While there are some curtains drawn back, there aren’t nearly enough to really grab my attention. Just a one or two more would’ve been great, but it just didn’t hit that sweet spot for plot hooks. Yachiyo his sister, I think it’s his sister at least, is a laid back and pretty carefree person for the most part. She is a drunk though.

Art: The art is pretty good, but it’s very much focused on characters and not at all on backgrounds, if there is any in any of the panels at all. So while the movement is great, the lack of backgrounds in most of the panels is a bit disappointing. That being said it was sort of refreshing to have little to no background in panels. Take that as you will.

Overall: Hitogatana is looking to be one of the dark brooding series that seems to be popular with older teens, but personally I found it to be more than a bit lacking in plot hooks. While I’ll be getting around to reading it, it won’t be any time soon.

For those who like: Sci-Fi, Action, Drama, Androids, Good Artwork.

Not for those don’t like: Any of the above.

Manga Monday: Boku wa Beatles by Fujii Tetsuo

This week for Manga Monday I’ve got a Quick Review for a series that I stumbled across recently. It’s Boku wa Beatles by Fujii Tetsuo!

Plot Synopsis: This is the tale of a Beatles Cover Band named The Fab 4 that is on the verge of breaking up due to inner conflicts in the year 2011. They all love The Beatles, but when they get into an argument in a subway….

Plot: The plot of this first chapter is all setup for the series, and while I won’t spoil the plot, I will say I was intrigued by the concept behind the series. You’ll know what I mean when you get to the end of the first chapter. Now as to the musical side I actually enjoyed it quite a bit, and their last song they played in this chapter was Yesterday. That particular song was the first ever song I sang in Choir class all the way back in middle school, so it’s got special meaning to me.

Characters: Rei and Makoto are the two big stars of this first chapter, but the entire band is pretty interesting. While we aren’t shown a whole bunch of their backstory yet, I’m sure we’ll get to see more later on.

Art: The art is awesome, and frankly I wouldn’t have been surprised to see that this was in a Shueisha publication, but it actually isn’t one.

Overall: If you love music, and especially if you love The Beatles, do yourself a favor and read this series. This first chapter was excellent.

For those who like: Music, The Beatles, Rock, Excellent Plot, Fantastic Cast of Charcaters,

Sensate Saturday: Fantasy is the Highest Form of Fiction

Hey all I’m back this week for Sensate Saturday with a quick essay on my feelings about Fantasy. Fantasy is the Highest Form of Fiction, in my opinion!

What do you mean highest form?: I mean that if Fantasy is done correctly it’s the best genre in all of fiction. It serves the purpose of literature to allow readers to experience things they otherwise couldn’t, and while many contemporary fiction books cover rare or hard to experience situations and events, they aren’t out of the reach of people, just costly or impractical, or illegal.

Why?: Well if Fantasy is done correctly than no other genre of fiction can really take you to completely alien worlds and cultures. I’ll point to any of Brandon Sanderson’s many Cosmere works as shining examples of what I’m talking about, and they are also my personal gold standard for judging any and all books. The Cosmere novels completely take you away to worlds that just don’t exist, and yet they make sense to us and we can easily relate to the characters. Not many authors can achieve the mastery of the genre as well as Sanderson, and the masterful way he comes up with complete worlds, with customs, cultures, religions, magic and many other things is truly spectacular. That isn’t even including his incredible pace for writing either.

Why isn’t (Insert other Genre here) as good as Fantasy?: Because if done correctly it’s still a world that is Earth, or a culture we can relate to because of it being distinctly “Terran”. That isn’t to say there aren’t masterworks in other genres, I’m not arrogant enough to believe that and I personally love many other books that just aren’t in the Fantasy genre. The Harry Bosch series is one of my favorite series of all time and yet it’s completely grounded in American culture. Connelly pulls off amazing mysteries, but they just aren’t as unique or otherworldly as stuff Brandon Sanderson writes.

This is all of course my opinion as is everything else I write and personally I’d love to read other’s thoughts on the matter. Do you agree or disagree with my claim that Fantasy is the Highest Form of Fiction? Leave your comments down below.

Manga Monday: Dr. Stone by Inagaki Riichiro

This week for Manga Monday I’ve got a Quick Review of a fairly new series. It’s Dr. Stone by Inagaki Riichiro!

Plot Synopsis: This science-fiction adventure series follows what happens when suddenly the world’s biggest-ever “crisis” arrives….

Plot: This series starts off pretty well, and while Senkuu is a really odd character, I like him quite a bit. Eccentricity isn’t a bad thing. I was quickly entranced by the series, but given that it was written by the Mangaka of Eyeshield 21 I shouldn’t have been surprised.

Characters: Senkuu and Taiju are our male lead characters along with Yuzuriha as our female lead. They are all really interesting characters and frankly I’m super intrigued by them. Senkuu is a genius, and Taiju seems to be the brawny guy. So I’m really looking forward to reading the rest of the series.

Artwork: The artwork is awesome, as one would expect from a Jump series.

Overall: I won’t say it’s a must read, but it’s pretty darn close to being one.

For those who like: Sci-Fi, Drama, Romance, Action, Adventure, Excellent Plot, Fantastic Cast of Characters, Amazing Artwork.

Not for those who don’t like: Any of the above.