Najica Blitz Tactics Vol. #03 (Mania.com)
Review Date: Monday, January 10, 2005
Release Date: Wednesday, December 01, 2004
Translated by:Josh Cole
What They Say
Blondes, Bullets and Bombshells! Najica may be an old hand at recovering Humaritts, but this special agent is on a mission to top all missions. She's off to a remote location to retrieve a jackpot of these manmade creatures, and to meet face-to-face with the person responsible for their very existence - the quirky Doctor Ren. Najica's pulling out her guns and Lila's on her way to meet her maker in a bullet-ridden showdown against the person who started it all!
The Review: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
In this, the concluding volume of the Najica manga, Najica and Lila head to a desert country to retrieve another Humaritt. She's among a group of women revolutionaries who are trying to overthrow the country. While there, Najica meets up with her #1 fan, Natsuko Kujo, who is an old friend of the leader of the revolutionaries. As Lila acts as a decoy, Najica and Natsuko team up to search for the Humaritt and Natsuko's friend. What they discover makes Najica begin to worry about Lila.
Back home, Najica has even more to worry about. In target practice, Lila has begun to hit her target in exactly the same pattern as Najica, including misses. Meanwhile, Gendo gets himself into trouble down in the warehouse district. There are mass-produced Humaritts, and they've got him pinned down. When he calls Najica for help, she leaves Lila at home. Lila isn't following orders as strictly as she used to, though.
After being scolded by Najica, Lila leaves the house and wanders the streets. Being so cute and clueless appearing, it doesn't take long for a "producer" to approach her and offer to make her a star. She quickly gets the attention of a crime lord and she has to run for it. She's rescued by a young boy who appears to have the same abilities she does.
In the final story arc, Majima has information concerning the whereabouts of Dr. Ren, the creator of the Humaritts. When the Humaritt project was cancelled, she went into hiding, taking all her research and the Humaritts with her. Gento has an army platoon with them, but they're now facing an army of mass-produced Humaritts without any self=preservation instinct. The battle isn't going well for Gento and company. When Najica and Lila arrive, they find Gento and slip into an airshaft that will take them down to the abandoned underground mall Dr. Ren is hiding in. Once there, Najica and Lila finally meet Dr. Ren. Najia and Gento fight her Humaritts, but in the confusion, Lila is taken away by the boy she meet earlier. The boy has a plan for Lila, and Najica must get to her before he can harm Lila.
Based on the Studio Fantasia secret agent panty-fest, the manga from Takuya Tashiro does it's best to deliver the goods. Readers familiar with the anime will recognize a couple of the storylines here, though they are quite different in how they play out, and the ending of the manga is significantly different. Takuya's stories have a great sense of action, with plenty of fights against deadly foes. The art is solid, though not especially unique. His character designs differ from the anime in that Najica and Lila are much better endowed. This is made apparent in one page where we are given a full-frontal nudity shot of Najica showering. The cover backs this up with Najica hoisting a M-203 rocket launcher on her shoulder while wearing an eye-popping outfit that can only be described as paramilitary fetish gear. While it's certainly eye-catching, I don't think you're likely to find too many female soldiers wearing a pink latex bustier and hot pants with a garter belt and thigh-high stockings. But then again, she's got an olive-drab army overcoat on, so it should be alright, right? The title and author names are placed sideways on a black strip that runs down the right side of the cover. The red against black and florid spelling for "Blitz Tactics" makes it rather hard to make out. But with Najica on display like she is, you don't really need to read the title of the book to know what you're getting into. The back cover shows Najica and Lila dressed up for a night out against a white background. The art reproduction is mostly fine, though I did see instances of heavy moiring of screentones.
Najica is entertaining, but it doesn't seem to work quite as well as a manga as it did an anime. The manga is worth getting on its own merits though. Not only for the in-your-face fanservice and multitude of pantyshots, but for the different and more definitive ending.
Mania Grade: B-
Art Rating: B-
Packaging Rating: B
Text/Translatin Rating: B-
Age Rating: 16 & Up
Released By: ADV Manga
Orientation: Right to Left