Chinese Hero Vol. #03 -

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Mania Grade: B-

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  • Art Rating: A
  • Packaging Rating: A
  • Text/Translatin Rating: B
  • Age Rating: 13 & Up
  • Released By: DrMaster
  • MSRP: 24.95
  • Pages: 234
  • ISBN: 978-1-59796-117-2
  • Size: B5
  • Orientation: Right to Left
  • Series: Chinese Hero

Chinese Hero Vol. #03

By Ron Quezon     April 07, 2008
Release Date: September 12, 2007

Chinese Hero Vol.#03
© DrMaster

Creative Talent
Writer/Artist:Wing Shing Ma
Translated by:Yun Zhao
Adapted by:Benjamin Stone

What They Say
Fifteen years have passed since Hero made a vow to Sword Saint to relinquish the path of vengeance. Unbeknownst to him, his son Jian is still alive and has come to Chinatown to find him! But why does Jian take his sweet time telling his father his true identity?

The Review
In this third compilation of Chinese Hero, Hero Hua finally reunites with this long lost son, Jian Xiong. Too bad Hero doesn't know it yet! Concealing his true identity, Jian arrives in Chinatown to see for himself if this stoic businessman is really his father. What Jian doesn't know is that Hero gave an oath fifteen years ago that he would not fight again for vengeance. While out on a walk, Jian happens upon a couple thugs who try to extort money from him. In the nick of time, Hero comes about and unleashes his martial arts skills to save Jian. Unfortunately, Hero recognizes the thugs are from the Five Guards, a section of the powerful Black Dragon Gang!

On the other side of Chinatown, martial artists Lohan and Wu Yuan have their hands full fighting Disease Man. An agent of the Black Dragon Gang, Disease Man fights using live roaches and enslaves infected people with his "roach bacteria." The duo finally drives away the Chinatown oppressor, but not before Wu Yuan is lethally infected. Shortly after, Hero has another encounter with the Five Guards, and this time Jian sees Hero's unmatched determination and skill. Moved by Hero's actions, Jian reveals his true identity to Hero. Finally, Hero and his son are reunited.

Regrouping from their defeats, Disease Man and the Five Guards unite and devise a plan to strike back. With the flurry of roaches and two dozen gangsters, the group attacks. Jian, Lohan, and a weakened Wu Yuan barely hold off the attackers. Returning from gathering supplies, Hero shows up and turns the tides. As Hero defeats Disease Man, a mysterious outsider intervenes and allows the gangsters to take Jian hostage! Helplessly, Hero watches them take his son away. How will Hero save Jian? Who is this mysterious stranger? Who is behind the powerful Black Dragon Gang?

If you find the fighting in the Chinese Hero series riveting, this third installment has plenty. The battle scenes are highly detailed and complex and the colors explode off the pages. There is a little of everything: invisible Chi attacks, roach kung fu, and cannibal powered combat styles. The proportion of fighting to character development still weighs heavily on the fighting. However, Wing Shing Ma skillfully contrasts Hero's deep passion to protect his son against Jian's care free attitude. Additionally, we see what became of some of the minor characters such as Qing, Lohan, and the Gate Masters.

Those with weak stomachs should be warned! The story takes a step into the bizarre, and feels more like "wild kingdom" than martial arts combat at certain points. This volume has Disease Man, the guy who can't stop eating roaches. Red King isn't much better. She's the baby eating gangster who likes to beat up a grizzly bear or two. The Green King uses poisonous snakes as weapons and looks like a garden snake as well. There's even a battle to the death between vicious black rats and small white cave mice. The previous volumes have their run-ins with cults and such, but fighting insects and rodents are a bit out of place and take the story down a notch.

Overall, Dr Master has a consistently high level of publication quality for the series and this volume is no different. There are a few misspelled words, but nothing that impedes the flow of the plot. This installment is a bit on the wild side, but that is not something to fault Dr Master for. The artwork and production value are visually stunning and help to smooth over problems with the storyline. This volume is worth adding to your Chinese Hero collection.


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