Great Catsby, the Vol. #02 (Mania.com)
By:Eduardo M. Chavez
Review Date: Wednesday, November 08, 2006
Release Date: Thursday, June 01, 2006
What They Say
Catsby is wrestling with a whole new set of life's challenges in this volume. His first love is gone for good - or is she? Meanwhile, a new woman arrives on the scene with some very interesting ideas about what couples can get up when there's no one else around. And Catsby's trusted confidante and drinking buddy Houndu begins to reveal some surprising predilections of his own - like a weakness for married women (whose husbands he just happens to be working for!).
Catsby's life has seemed to have come to an end. The poor cat can only find solace in kimchi stew and his nice warm orange comforter. There is nothing warm and fuzzy about Catsby these days for you see his heart is broken. The love of his life, his perfect fit has dumped him and got married. And if it was not enough to be depressed over romance, the cat has to deal with a life going nowhere. He has no real job. He is mooching off his best friend and now his father wants a grandson! Catsby is sinking fast and there seems to be no end to these doldrums in sight.
But along comes some light for this desperate soul in the form of a gal named Sun. Catsby's life just might be ready for a comeback. Through his relationship with Sun he can clearly see what he was not getting in his years with Persu. This is a mutual understanding. A collaboration they are both playing equal roles. There is only honesty to they way they communicate and interact. And that was possibly never there before, so it is going to make moments remembering Persu all that much more painful for the both of them.
The seinen romance-comedy in America has for some reason disappeared over the years. Maison Ikkoku is possibly one of the few that comes to mind that work equally well on both levels and do not rely on other gimmicks to maintain the plot. It might be difficult to compare the Great Catsby to MI, but there is something to be said about this almost poetic story of new twenty-something love. This might look a lot like a story about cats and dogs. However, this tale is really as real and personal as it can get. I am not sure if it is just the translation but when reading this title I feel as if I am amongst friends talking about life, work, bills and troubled romance. The stories within the story are what make up Gatsby. They are what make this so real. You can feel the equal parts of relief and pain when Catsby is confronted by an old flame. You can hear the biting sarcasm when with his best friend Houndo. This manga to a young adult like myself is like a Friday nights drinking with old friends. The week is over. You discuss the triumphs and tragedies. There are no rules to this game at all. It is just casual, comforting and cathartic and honestly I can find few titles that bring comedy, romance and drama together better. So put on the furry ears and tails, and sit back with new friends as you must not miss out on one of my favorite manga running.
Mania Grade: A
Art Rating: A
Packaging Rating: A
Text/Translatin Rating: A-
Age Rating: 16 & Up
Released By: Netcomics
Orientation: Left to Right