Freesia - Reviews

Freesia
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kilrazan's avatar
Sep 13, 2023

This one is really difficult to evaluate. There's a lot to like, and also a lot to dislike - it's all about the way you approach it, and I'll admit I wasn't always in the right mindset to enjoy this kind of work while I was trying to read it.

Story - We see a war-torn nation rife with all the hallmarks of a police-state where people report each other and everyone is generally suspicious all the time, and this nation has enabled an industry of approved vengeance killings via "Proxy Enforcers" who take jobs from people who've been wronged to kill the one who wronged them. While we do have a main character in this story whom the plot revolves around, he's not always the center of it and there are many chapters where he doesn't even appear. In a way, the bulk of the story is more about the setting and the things happening there, than any individual character. The story prominiently features mental issues and psychosis in several characters, often leaving the reader wondering how much of a given chapter is just a character hallucinating things and how much of it actually happened. Personally, I'm a fan of this kind of narrative when it's done well, and I think overall this one did a decent job. There were times when it was losing me a bit, but I'll be honest and admit I wasn't always paying enough attention during those chapters. Ultimately I think it's worth the time investment if you're a fan of mind-benders. 8/10 - a little slow at times, but ultimately rewarding.

Art - This is the most difficult part for me to rate. It's simultaneously one of the worst-drawn manga I've ever read, yet somehow also extraordinarily consistent and stylish. I can't quite put my finger on how the artist did it, but somehow I get the sense that the artist intentionally chose the almost child-like scribbles as a design philosophy, as opposed to just being bad at art. There are certainly many moments in the story that the art contributed to the narrative experience quite well, giving the reader a sense that things look this way because the characters' perceptions of reality are shaky at best. However, despite the consistency and narrative-function, it is still just difficult to look at and sometimes makes it hard to even tell what's going on in a panel. 5/10 - A stylistic choice I can respect, but still dislike

Characters - As with any good mind-bending story, the characters need to be convincingly mysterious - unhinged yet consistent, in such a way that their actions are unpredictable but make sense with their motives and experiences. This one does a pretty good job of that. I'll avoid spoiling the nuances, but suffice to say that each important character has a satisfying character arc despite - or perhaps even because of - their particular brand of loose-screws. 8/10 - A very competent showing of this type of character writing

Overall - It lost me a bit in the middle, but I found the intro and ending to be quite satisfying and even gripping at times, enough that I'm happy to say I enjoyed it. It's a work of art that I'd definitely recommend to anyone who is able to see through the art style and find the emotional connection within (that is, provided you're interested in grim/dark narratives involving insane people, of course). 7/10 - Not exactly my favorite, but certainly an enjoyable experience.

8/10 story
5/10 art
8/10 characters
7/10 overall
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Ryugadr's avatar
Sep 14, 2021

This manga is grimdark. It's filled with death, drugs, rape and most mentally ill people. A war-torn world filled with corrupt politicians and government has passed a law legalizing retaliatory killings. I think this story is about separating or understanding the difference between reality and Ideals/dreams/hope or frankly hallucinations. The lesson of the day is we don't live in a perfect world. The characters do not feel one-dimensional. They all have spectacular development. There are some phenomenal quotes in there.

9/10 story
7/10 art
8/10 characters
8/10 overall
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