The art and story for this manga are phenomenal. The story starts simple, and rather fantastic, 'a girl falls into a book and is given seven beautiful men to protect her so she can be granted any three wishes and will be revered as a prophesied hero by all in the land in the meantime'. The story quickly becomes more complicated, however, as friends and family are drawn into the mess, Miaka finds herself trapped and in very real danger, and the country about to go to war with hers has their own legendary hero looking to get wishes, too.
The main character isn't perfect, and her mistakes have real consequences. This isn't a magical girl story, or a light-hearted shounen adventure story where no one is hurt or killed while the hero fools around and saves the day. Innocents are dragged into things, a war is raged, and if Miaka makes mistakes, not only may she be trapped inside forever, but she and all of her friends will surely die as well.
The main character is selfish and childish, and her unwise and selfish actions have consequences, harming people around her who she cares about, and even turning her oldest friend against her due to her own mistakes.
The story is compelling and complex and well worth re-reading multiple times. The art is beautiful and holds some of the most beautiful characters I've ever seen drawn in manga. The side and even minor characters are well written and interesting, and even the villains are believable and sympathetic, even when they're evil or cruel and manipulative.
The only two troubles you'll face reading the manga or watching the anime are the romantic plot tumor of the main romance (manifesting as the infamous shouts of 'MIAKA!' 'TAMAHOME!' each episode in the manga) and how truly selfish and childish the main character, Miaka, is. She doesn't develop very much in the series, and much of what she does only addresses her best friend and chosen love interest. The trouble with her single-mindedness, is that when she repeatedly tramples feelings of other characters...those characters are written in such a sympathetic way that it's hard to ignore or forgive. Often consequences of her actions affect others or only her indirectly, and much of the time Miaka and Tamahome become far too wrapped up in their own drama when the lives of thousands are in the balance...and other characters are far too tolerant of this.
So, this is an anime which has an excellent story, amazing art, and excellent characters and is well worth watching or reading (the manga has much better art than the anime, and the anime english dub was done in a time when it's considerably lower quality than current ones) ...but you may find that you despise the main character, and later her love interest as well, as you read it and watch their characters erased for the sake of the requisite shoujo romance.
There are no comments - leave one to be the first!