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Sunday, 10 October 2010

Manga Review: Natsu no Arashi

Time Travelling Ghosts

Title: Natsu no Arashi
Author: Kobayashi Jin
Release: Monthly
Status: Ongoing
Genre: Supernatural, Sci-Fi, Comedy, Romance, Historical
Art: B
Originality: S
Story: A
Characters: A
Humor: B
Action: B

Impression: This series comes from the author of School Rumble and it’s about a thirteen year old boy and the experiences he goes through during one particular summer. He meets this high school girl from a bygone era who claims to be a ghost from 60 years prior to the summer they met and with his help, the two of them are able to leap back into time. Aside from enjoying the perks and hijinx that time travel brings, they also go back to the bombing days of World War 2 to save people from the burning mess that the conflict generated. For someone like Kobayashi Jin who’s famous for his comedy (and infamous for the ‘pie’ ending), you’d never think he’d be capable of threading a story with so many different elements thrown into it so seamlessly. The guy’s great at coming up with memorable characters and hilariously epic over the top jokes but he’s not too shabby with telling serious stories either. The first few chapters only hint at how intense the story gets later on in the series. He doesn’t even bother to make the humor as zany as School Rumble’s hence the B score for the humor department. It’s quite telling when SHAFT’s adaptations of the series are actually funnier and sillier than their original source. Don’t take it as though I meant it doesn’t have it silly moments. Those are certainly there but storytelling and characterization are the focus of this series here. Definitely worth reading but you shouldn’t expect another School Rumble in any way. This is a dish of an entirely different flavor but as far as I can tell it’s turning out to be a great one.

P.s. Check out Kobayashi Jin’s profile. He actually does look like Harima Kenji of School Rumble!

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