Yakitate!! JaPan Vol. #15 (Mania.com)

By:Sakura Eries
Review Date: Wednesday, March 25, 2009
Release Date: Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Kazuma and his friends face Team St. Pierre in a nationally televised competition!

Creative Staff
Writer/Artist: Takashi Hashiguchi
Translation: Noritaka Minami
Adaptation: Jake Forbes

What They Say
Kazuma and Team Japan emerge victorious from the Monaco Cup, but has all their hard work been in vain? Now that the Pantasia bakery empire rests solely in the hands of the diabolical Kirisaki, it appears that rival chain St. Pierre will rein supreme over the Japanese bread world. But what's this? Will Kirisaki really give Pantasia the chance to win back their bakery if Kazuma and his friends defeat Kirisaki's own cabal of bread craftsmen on a nationally televised show? It appears a brand-new--and most likely absurdly outrageous--bread challenge is about to begin!

The Review!
Team Japan wins the battle for the Monaco Cup but appears to have lost the war for Pantasia. However, the nefarious Kirisaki makes an unexpected offer to Tsukino -- he'll return Pantasia if Kazuma and his friends defeat Kirisaki's hand-picked team of bread craftsmen on national television! It's a risky endeavor, but Tsukino will do anything to get her grandfather's bakery out of Kirisaki's hands. And so Kazuma returns home for the challenge of Yakitate!! 25 -- to create breads unique to the varied regions of Japan!

Yakitate!! Japan shifts from the international stage of the Monaco Cup back to home territory. However, just because the setting has returned to Japan, don't assume that there won't be a variety of new ingredients and outrageously innovative creations coming out of Kazuma's oven! If you ever wanted to learn about obscure delicacies such as sea urchins and the lesser-known parts of Japan, this would be the arc to check out.

However, character dynamics haven't changed much in this manga and are getting somewhat stale. For those who love Kuroyanagi's excessive reactions, he returns as the primary judge of this arc, albeit under slightly different circumstances. Pantasia retains a pre-man team for their Yakitate!! 25 endeavor with Kanmuri replacing Suwabara, but Kazuma still very much plays the part of the genius who saves the day while Kawachi is even more than ever relegated to team idiot. Though Kawachi does make his contribution to Kazuma's chawanmushi bread, the way the other Pantasia bakers rag on Kawachi's French bread is quite mean. Considering his bread equaled Suwabara's in the Pantasia finals and all the time he's just spent in France, you'd think they'd show a little more respect (and that Kawachi would show little more confidence) in his French bread abilities.

Volume 15 extras include a story thus far summary, mini information on one of the key ingredients in this volume, and ads for other Viz titles. 



Mania Grade: B+
Art Rating: A
Packaging Rating: B
Text/Translation Rating: B
Age Rating: 16 and Up
Released By: Viz Media
MSRP: 9.99
Pages: 210
ISBN: 978-1421517100
Size: B6
Orientation: Right to Left
Series: Yakitate!! JaPan