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Uzumaki: Spiral into Horror

ThePatches's avatar
Oct 12, 2009

Story 7.5/10Now, I haven't read all that much manga in comparison to the anime I've watched, but I love horror in all its forms. On sothis' recommendation, I picked up Uzumaki and could not stop until I reached the grim, grim end. One of the delicious differences between Japanese and American tales of this type is the pervasion of atmosphere so integral to the Asian concepts of fear, and Junji Itou brings it in spades.Through its escalating set of vignettes, Uzumaki paints a picture of a town and population descending into madness. Nearly all of Itou's little stories could be considered fables, as each one... See full review

8/10 story
9.5/10 art
6.5/10 characters
8.5/10 overall

Ultra Maniac

Kolink's avatar
Oct 12, 2009

Ultra Maniac is about a magical witch named Nina who comes to Earth to study abroad because she has failed witch school at her home in the Magic Kingdom. (Not Disneyland/world by the way!) Nina meets Ayu, a girl with a reputation for being 'calm and cool' after Ayu helps her find a missing mini PC that aids her in using magic. Ayu has a crush on a popular boy at her school named Kaji Tetsushi. This manga centers around crushes and romance with Nina's magic powers adding an element of comedy to the mix. ArtThe art in Ultra Maniac is very fitting for the genre. Its all very cute and stylish and very... See full review

7/10 story
9/10 art
6.5/10 characters
7.5/10 overall

Hellsing

papcorp's avatar
Oct 11, 2009

STORYEver heard those scifi stories about nazi zombies? Yep it's one of them:) Let's recapitulate the story as briefly as we can (I don't wanna spoil the fun of reading the manga so I won't get into details):British organization, which is fighiting vampires, zombies and others since very very long, have a vampire nosferatu on their salary. Vatican is in bad mood and hates anglo-catholics in UK (they have their own organization to fight badies). What is more the nazis are coming back from South America to destroy England and they have vampire soldiers onboard their zeppelins :)As cliche as it sounds... the... See full review

8/10 story
7/10 art
6/10 characters
9/10 overall

School Ningyo

ThePatches's avatar
Oct 11, 2009

This bite-sized horror story offered nothing new to the table, but proved a fun distraction. Sadly, any fan of the horror genre will be able to guess where the whole this ends up about halfway through, but given the quick pacing, that in and of itself doesn't ruin the outing.The mangaka's attempt to marry the innocent visuals of the mermaids (all cast as girls in school swimsuits) with the horrific behavior of the characters only succeeds halfway. The impressive images of gaggles of girls swimming through the air and between the walls of the class rooms certainly adds an other-worldliness to the work, but I... See full review

5/10 story
5.5/10 art
5/10 characters
5.5/10 overall

Akazukin Eliza

sothis's avatar
Oct 9, 2009

....... -_-;Well that was disturbing. A creepy muscular grandmother feeling her granddaughter up? Check! A giant worm creature that the main character eventually straddles? Check! Random pointless ecchi? Check!Honestly there isn't a point to reading this unless you want a bit of ecchi. The story is crap (a version of Little Red Riding Hood, essentially) and otherwise is a useless one shot.

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?/10 story
?/10 art
?/10 characters
2/10 overall

100 Days Dream

sothis's avatar
Oct 9, 2009

Wow! ;_;100 Days Dream was a definite surprise. It starts as a relatively tame, whimsical tale of a girl who can fly and communicate with the things she meets - a bird and a tree - and ends with a twist and sadness. Definitely worth the read if you like melancholy stories.

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?/10 story
?/10 art
?/10 characters
8.5/10 overall

$100 is Too Cheap

sothis's avatar
Oct 9, 2009

Generally I find one shot manga to be too short to get into - that was not the case with $100 is Too Cheap! It's short, but it also has an interesting and humorous - due to the twist - story that will keep you hooked the whole time. As it's a simple one shot there's not much else to say except read it!

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?/10 story
?/10 art
?/10 characters
8/10 overall

3D Material

sothis's avatar
Oct 9, 2009

3D Material is a set of two one-shots centering around romance and drama, aimed at a josei (older female) audience. Story 1 is easily the most compelling, with two character embroiled in a bitter love triangle with plenty of angst to go around. I recommended the manga with Nana for that reason. Story 2 was terribly confusing for me and I wouldn't recommend it to anyone.Artwork is pretty bad as well, so this is one I'd probably skip on.

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?/10 story
?/10 art
?/10 characters
5/10 overall

Hataraki Man

sothis's avatar
Oct 9, 2009

I'm not feeling it.I watched some of the anime version of Hataraki Man, and enjoyed it; it felt like a somewhat-heavy slice of life title, with plenty of josei angst to go around. The manga just... is missing something. I know it came first, but I found it far more boring and uninteresting to read. Somehow the topic of workaholics (with a heavy dose of psychological conversation) doesn't make for a good read. It's hard to follow the character, hard to keep people straight (given there are so many names and faces to deal with), and overall pretty soulless. That being said, the chapter involving Hiroko's... See full review

?/10 story
?/10 art
?/10 characters
5.7/10 overall

Katana

sothis's avatar
Oct 9, 2009

Katana is a lighthearted and engaging look at a young man who can communicate with the souls dwelling within swords. As a child he was cast aside by his peers who thought he was crazy, and he definitely doesn't want to be charged with the burden of running the family sword meister business. Nevertheless he finds that he keeps running across swords and spirits in need of assistance. Katana is relatively episodic but unlike manga such as Pet Shop of Horrors, each chapter fits a little better together with recurring characters. There's a decent blend of comedy and... See full review

?/10 story
?/10 art
?/10 characters
6.8/10 overall

The Embalmer

sothis's avatar
Oct 9, 2009

The Embalmer is a dark yet somehow delightful look at a young man put in a difficult position; he is an embalmer, an occupation frowned upon in Japan. We read as he handles various deaths and helps restore dignity back to the lost souls - not to mention a great deal of character development with he himself. The Embalmer is a visual treat to look at, and overall is definitely worth a read. Filled with relatively unconnected stories and a few central characters that span them all, it's an easy read that will capture your attention. If dark elements of the dead... See full review

7.5/10 story
7/10 art
7/10 characters
7/10 overall

Hataraki Man

Omurqi's avatar
Oct 8, 2009

This review is based on the first 7 chapters of the manga.Hataraki Man is about the life of Matsukata Hiroko, a hardworking editor at “The Age” magazine, following the difficulties she encounters, as well as her successes. Having read this straight after reading a somewhat generic shoujo/josei romance story, the first thing that caught my eyes were the character designs. For once, all the characters actually had different faces, instead of just having a variety of eyes and hairstyles, and were all individually recognizable. Even though the quality of the drawings wasn’t something... See full review

6.5/10 story
7.5/10 art
7/10 characters
7/10 overall

Cat Street

yelizaveritas's avatar
Oct 7, 2009

Cat Street is something really fascinating. As for me, I was caught from the very first chapter.This manga seems to be an ordinary shoujo manga with cute art and usual characters. But then I realized that I cannot find any manga, similar to Cat Street. Sure, a lot of manga tell us a story about a girl in the cruel world of show-biz. But in Cat Street this theme is not the main – It loses to the theme of relationships between people. It’s about life – and as life is such an unpredictable thing so manga is the same.Art’s amazing. All the faces are cute – It doesn’t matter... See full review

9/10 story
9.3/10 art
9.5/10 characters
9.5/10 overall

Rave Master

Merryberry's avatar
Oct 6, 2009

Intro...A new rave master has appeared, destined to collected the scattered raves in order to save the world.  Meeting different people along the way, the rave master helps to make the world a better place for all.Story (6/10)With any manga which goes on for a while (and Rave is certainly one of them at 35 volumes), there is always the danger of it going on for too long, with a lack of a strong storyline, resulting in it being dragged out to the limit.  And to some extent that's what we find happening in Rave.  The characters spend so long helping other people and levelling up that you find... See full review

6/10 story
8/10 art
8/10 characters
7/10 overall

Lament of the Lamb

Fireaxe's avatar
Oct 5, 2009

Originally posted on the forums on April 5th 2009I've just finished reading the last volume of Hitsuji no Uta, and while I much preferred the ending Kei Toume picked for the manga (compare to the OVA), I still have mixed feeling about it overall. Maybe it's just me who can't handle so much self-affliction, or maybe it's because it was too much of a "totally dark and desperate story, an one-way trip towards destruction" (those are Toume's words from the epilogue). At times... See full review

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

Extra Heavy Syrup

sothis's avatar
Oct 5, 2009

Talk about boring. Extra Heavy Syrup is a short, mission-based series about two girls who are looking for clues about their ex boyfriend while trying to 'clean' what's needed. It could have been an interesting story but at only 2 chapters is far too short to get into. Not to mention nothing is resolved with the girls! I can liken EHS barely to something like Rose Hip Zero, but the manga reminded me more of anime such as Get Backers. Overall, I'd suggest avoiding this one.

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?/10 story
?/10 art
?/10 characters
3/10 overall

Candy Life

sothis's avatar
Oct 5, 2009

Overall a surprisingly interesting read. Candy Life presents a relatively standard love triangle with a bit of smut and a very sexy succubus (in the form of a 19-year-old boy), but ultimately succeeds at being engaging for the entire volume. Makoto's choice is relatively obvious but one of the character's motives are not, leading to an interesting twist that you likely will not see coming. Artwork is less than stellar with fairly ugly designs, including a horrendous cover shot; but it gets the job done.Overall I'd recommend Candy Life for a quick josei read.

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?/10 story
?/10 art
?/10 characters
6.7/10 overall

Desert Storm

sothis's avatar
Oct 5, 2009

Desert Storm is a collection of three one shot manga revolving around the supernatural. Each tale is distinctly unique and in my opinion vary in quality and story. The first, Desert Storm, was to me the most interesting. Revolving around Europe is rare for any anime/manga (Yugo the Negotiator immediately came to mind), and Desert Storm pulled it off well. The second, Garden, was equally as interesting and more of a straightforward love story; it was engaging and had just the right amount of... See full review

6.5/10 story
6/10 art
6.5/10 characters
6/10 overall

Desert Storm

Otaku108's avatar
Oct 3, 2009

The stories each had a common thread, a boy with supernatural abilities or circumstances and the woman that falls for him. Each story had it's own setting and varried in degree's of skill. I enjoyed the 2nd story, The Garden of Wild Roses, the most but the 3rd story, Sunset Encounter, was not far off. The title story wasn't bad at all, it just lacked somethings that the second two stories did not. They are each only one-shots afterall so it's not like I could expect much from them in the first place, but as far as a compilation goes, this one wasn't half bad.

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8/10 story
7/10 art
8/10 characters
7.5/10 overall

Wild Act

Otaku108's avatar
Oct 3, 2009

Story: The story wasn't anything uber special but it was very captivating, I really wanted to know how it ended, and enjoyed the whole process to that ending. I really got behind the main characters and their plight, it was a tad predictable at times but nothing so bad as to ruin my enjoyment of it.Artwork:
Illustrations were well done, varied, and expressive. My only gripe were how some of the characters kind of looked a bit too similar. Kind of your typical bishi-cookie cutter face with the variable hair color/style. Though this time the mangaka has a good excuse which I won't go into... See full review

9/10 story
9/10 art
10/10 characters
9.5/10 overall

Ga-rei

Omurqi's avatar
Oct 2, 2009

This mini-review is based on the first 9 volumes of the Ga-Rei manga.With an (I can only asume) high-budget and awesome in nearly all aspects of awesomeness anime-prologue like that, surely the manga has to be something else, right? Wrong, well, it IS something else, but not in the good way. The first thing that bugged me, was that Kagura's personality is almost completely different from the anime. She has the typical archtype Comedy / Action personality. Yes, that's right, Ga-Rei is an Action / Comedy, with a wee bit of Romance / Drama thrown in, your typical ongoing Shounen manga. If you can... See full review

7.5/10 story
5/10 art
5.8/10 characters
6/10 overall

Zetman

Drahken's avatar
Oct 2, 2009

This series started out really good, I would have rated the first part 4 stars or more. After a while though it made a huge shift in plot & characters, and seemed like a completely unrelated series. That part sucked major balls, and should be given a negative rating. If I had the capacity to give the series 2 seperate ratings, I would give the first part very high ones (probably 8/10), but the later part deserves very low ones for story & overall (probably 0.0003/10). The scores included here are the 2 sets averaged together.

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5/10 story
8/10 art
6/10 characters
1.2/10 overall

Dragon Drive

Drahken's avatar
Oct 2, 2009

The first half of this manga was great. However, this is one of those aggravating series which completely changes story & plot in the middle. After the initial plot concludes, a new & almost completely unrelated one ensues. In the second plot, Dragon Drive has been transformed into a card game and the star is a completely new character (although I believe he's related to one of the original heroes). The only returning character in the beginning is the announcer, Agent L. Some of the original characters do return much, MUCH later in the series, but even then they're little more than cameo appearances.

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8/10 story
7/10 art
6/10 characters
8/10 overall

Yaiba

Drahken's avatar
Oct 2, 2009

Man... This couldn't BE a more blatrant Dragonball ripoff if it tried. The art is very similar, the characters are very similar (a spiky-haired kid with superhuman strength & ninja skills, an older girl playing a nanny-like role, an irresponsible old geezer who's supposed to be teaching the kid, a villain who's a blatant piccolo ripoff). At first Yaiba at least tried to be a little unique, with the plot revolving around competition for some ancient cursed swords instead of hunting for dragon balls. However, starting around chapter 55 they go on a scavenger hunt for magical spheres, one of which will... See full review

7/10 story
8/10 art
6/10 characters
7/10 overall