Trigun Maximum Vol. #10 (

By:Eduardo M. Chavez
Review Date: Wednesday, February 14, 2007
Release Date: Sunday, December 31, 2006

Creative Talent
Writer/Artist:Naitou Yasuhiro
Translated by:Studio Cutie
Adapted by:Studio Cutie

What They Say
Since the day Vash spotted his decimated soul in the middle of the desert, Nicholas Wolfwood has become a favorite of fans. A man of the cloth with a tortured soul and a past full of bullets, the protector of our story's hero, Wolfwood might just be reaching the end of his pew.

Ironically, the past has come back to attack him. And by that we mean Livio, the young man Nicholas once befriended. Livio is more than a match for Wolfwood, having been trained by the same master, Chapel. And now the master and both disciples meet in a deadly face-off, and only one man will survive.

But readers are in for more than just one surprise in this climactic volume of Trigun.

The Review
Honestly, considering how this series has progressed through the first eight and a half volumes, I could not have imaged Naitou ever going through with what transpired in this volume. This manga has gone through a few changes since its start as Trigun. But what happens in this volume changes the dynamic dramatically. Fortunately, I feel this is for the best.

If you read the previous volume of TriMax you possibly had the same premonition about the future of Nicolas Wolfwood as I had. The young man of the cross appeared prepared to for the worst upon entering what he described as the end game with those who turned him into the Gun he is now. I could see dead man walking all over the body language and hear the same somber loneliness in his words. Wolfwood wanted to do this on his own. He accepted the responsibility and the sadness that would bring. Yet this had to be done. He had to have closure and even more importantly he had to protect those he cared for.

No matter what happens to Wolfwood from this point on, Trigun Maximum as a whole has been changed. And I think Naitou tries to express that in a few ways. The tone for this series has been dark over the last four volumes or so. I have complained about the lack of humor, but now I feel it's justified. At the same time, there is an even more somber tone here. Naitou gives his cast some time to reflect as also. Suddenly we see those quiet moments where Vash and friends have dinner together. We see them communicate in ways beyond words. Panels show more character art; leaving Naitou's detailed backgrounds for moments when they are more appropriate (action scenes or change of venue). Even the design on the covers has changed subtlety.

Naitou's lost lamb turned chapel was a great compliment to Vash. Side by side they provided action, humor and camaraderie that this title really needed. That dynamic is going to change now as the focus will likely be solely on the Stampede. I hope Naitou takes the opportunity to mix things up a bit from here on out. I know I needed the Chapel to guide me through the last volumes... Turn to the next Wolfwood.

Mania Grade: A-
Art Rating: B+
Packaging Rating: A
Text/Translatin Rating: A-
Age Rating: 16 & Up
Released By: Dark Horse
MSRP: 9.95
Pages: 196
ISBN: 1-59307-556-1
Size: B6
Orientation: Right to Left