Basilisk Vol. #02 (

By:Matthew Alexander
Review Date: Wednesday, August 30, 2006
Release Date: Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Creative Talent
Writer/Artist:Story by Futaro Yamada, Art by Masaki Segawa
Translated by:David Ury
Adapted by:David Ury

What They Say
The bloody battle to rule Japan has begun: the Iga and the Kouga clans are locked in a fight to the death. Driven by a centuries-old hatred, each clan will do anything to annihilate the other.

The Kouga clan is engaging in a little espionage: they've planted a shapeshifter, disguised as an Iga ninja, in the Iga palace. And the Iga clan turns to its last, best hope, their new leader, Oboro - the only one who can defeat the Kouga's formidable leader, Gennosuke. But is she willing to kill the man she loves? As the war grows more desperate, will true love be the next casualty?

The Review
Contains nudity. Impressive nudity at that!

The heads continue to roll in this volume as characters and henchmen meet many a grisly death. This volume also introduces more characters, their techniques, and the techniques of mysterious characters from the first volume are finally revealed. And yes, Gennosuke's ultimate technique is finally used and it is BAD ASS!

The Iga ninja decide to press their advantage and head straight to the Kouga village, Manjidani. The Iga group manage to claim some Kouga heads along the way, but none of those ninja are listed on the battle scroll. But the Kouga are still in the dark as to the battle scrolls existence and their leader Gennosuke is still in the Iga village, so the Iga still hold the advantage.

My favorite new character is Okoi of the Kouga ninja. She is one seriously buff and scantily clad ninja girl with a particularly nasty technique. She ends up getting captured by the Iga, but in the end she is able to get her hands on the battle scroll and give it to her older brother. With this information finally revealed to the Kouga, Gennosuke takes his leave of the Iga village and his lover Oboro. Now I don't want to reveal the ending but it's done in a way that leaves open the reasoning behind Oboro's decision to do what she does. Will she choose her clan or her lover? I can't wait to find out.

I really like the artwork and Segawa's ability to put a lot of emotion into the characters' facial expressions. Plus I enjoy the full lips he gives the female characters. The printing for this second volume is beautiful and solid all the way through, fixing the problem Del Rey had with some pages having faded tone work in volume one. After that I have to say I FREAKIN LOVE this large format. It highlights good artwork and I can't wait to see more titles go this route.

Mania Grade: B+
Art Rating: B+
Packaging Rating: A
Text/Translatin Rating: A-
Age Rating: 18 & Up
Released By: Del Rey
MSRP: 13.95
Pages: 240
ISBN: 0-345-48271-9
Size: A5
Orientation: Right to Left
Series: Basilisk