Bokurano Ours Vol. #02 -

Manga Review

Mania Grade: A-

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  • Art Rating: B+
  • Packaging Rating: A-
  • Text/Translation Rating: B+
  • Age Rating: 16 and Up
  • Released By: Viz Media
  • MSRP: 12.99
  • Pages: 216
  • ISBN: 9781421533896
  • Size: A5
  • Orientation: Right to Left
  • Series: Bokura no Unsei

Bokurano Ours Vol. #02

Bokurano Ours Vol. #02 Manga Review

By Matthew Warner     November 04, 2010
Release Date: September 21, 2010

Bokurano Ours Vol. #02
© Viz Media

Continuing tales of why one shouldn’t be so quick to trust strange men and their promises of giant robots.

Creative Staff
Writer/Artist: Mohiro Kitoh

What They Say
Giant robots are invading Earth and fifteen teenagers must figure out a way to stop them. The key to mankind's survival is a towering mecha known as Zearth, but the iron giant's power is not infinite. It gets its strength from the power of life supplied by each teenage pilot. That's a deadly price to pay for someone not yet in high school.

The Review!

Continuing from the last volume, we find Masaru having a breakdown after crushing his own father.  In spite of this, the enemy continues its attack, until Masaru snaps out of it and destroys the monster in his own unique way.  The children start to realize that the “game” may not be worth it in retrospect, only to learn from Koyemshi that they can quit.  Not only that, but they learn a terrifying truth: Zearth is powered by the life force of the pilot, meaning that whoever controls the robot will be dead by the end of their conflict (a fact that shows itself through Masaru, who drops dead after the beating the enemy.)  As Masaru’s chapter comes to a conclusion, we learn that the next pilot will be Daiichi Yamura.
As Daiichi’s chapter opens, we learn that the super serious young man is responsible for two younger sisters and one younger brother.  After a brief aside in which we learn that each battle has a 48 hour time limit from its start (the Earth is destroyed if the battle isn’t concluded in time), we see Daiichi being torn apart as to what he can do for his family with what little time he has left.  Despite a commitment to go with his siblings to an amusement park one last time, the enemy appears within the city.  After telling his Aunt and Uncle to flee to safety and take care of his siblings, Daiichi boards Zearth.  However, he refuses to fight for at least 10 minutes, allowing time for people to evacuate.  The robot begins to attack in its own strange way, and Daiichi meets it head on with his own tactics, carrying it out to see before destroying it.  Having won the battle, Daiichi asks Koyemshi to store his body away so his family won’t have to see it, and we see his family somberly moving on with their lives.
The rest of this book is spent on Mako Nakarai, the next pilot.  This young girl is incredibly responsible and always does her best, but is constantly looked down upon for her mother’s less than savory profession of prostitute.  Over the course of her story, we see that her mother, in spite of her career, is a significantly better human being than the other childrens’ mothers, and watch as the young girl attempts to earn money in the same not-so-acceptable way as her mother for one final goal.  Although this doesn’t work out, Mako still manages to reach her goal, preparing outfits for the pilots of Zearth (though this requires the enemy mysteriously complying and giving her an extra hour to finish them).  Before the fight begins, she makes a quick stop to rescue one of the classmates who ridiculed her (revealing in the process that this classmate is, in fact, rather promiscuous herself).  With her business finished, she manages to bring down the enemy, and the book closes as we see her classmates turning over a new leaf.
In Summary:
As we see any hope for a truly happy ending for most/all of these characters slip away, this series takes an intriguing turn.  Now, in addition to seeing each character’s ideals and personalities come to light in the way they pilot Zearth, we also get to watch each pilot’s story unfold while being forced to deal with inevitable tragedy.  This series certainly deals with its subject in a way so dark that some may find it off-putting, but the way in which the beautifully crafted tales demonstrate and explore each child’s circumstances can’t help but be admired.  This twisted take on a classic genre is certainly something to keep an eye on.  

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