Gunsmith Cats: Burst Vol. #03 (Mania.com)
Review Date: Wednesday, February 20, 2008
Release Date: Friday, February 01, 2008
What They Say
The gang is all here for a road rally on Route 66! Of course we've got Rally, Minnie-May, Bean Bandit, and the rest of the bunch, but this volume features the return of driving damsel Riff-Raff! When you have this crew going head-to-head against a gaggle of other dangerous drivers, then you've got yet another tome of lunatic traffic. And what would a volume of Gunsmith Cats be without the requisite gunplay? This time we've even got the classic Russian rocket-propelled grenades!
Vincent seems to be getting things back to normal, starting by getting a supercharged replacement for her dearly-departed GT500. Unfortunately for Vincent and the girls, part of things being back to normal involves having disposal income -- and Road Buster still has a firm grip on most of Howard's reward money. Road Buster claims that Detective Percy is still monitoring his accounts too closely to divvy up the remainder of the cash, but drops a hint that he expects an "accident" to take care of the problem during an upcoming street race.
It's not surprising, then, that Percy has cooked up roughly the same plan. Having coerced the race organizer to relocate a checkpoint at the last minute, Percy intends to herd Road Buster close to a couple of lackeys armed to the teeth with rocket-propelled grenades. For her part, Vincent claims that she has no interest in taking part in the showdown between Percy and Road Buster, despite having personally enrolled into the race after hearing about Road Buster's plan.
This volume is basically a 192-page love letter to Detroit, with a lecture or two on handguns thrown in for variety's sake. Unfortunately, in doing this, Sonoda has really narrowed the appeal of the series. Car chase and gun fanboys will probably get a ton of mileage (no pun intended) out of the extended high-speed shootout sequence that makes up most of this release's contents. But in exchange, Sonoda has turned the writing almost completely humorless (I got a couple of chuckles out of the mother-and-son racing team, but that's it) and in general just sucked a lot of the fun out of the story.
After a dry first volume and a surprisingly entertaining second one, it's disappointing to see Sonoda start to take himself too seriously again and end up producing another lackluster entry into the series. Gunsmith Cats: Burst has worked best when it's ridiculously over-the-top and completely aware of its silliness, but there's not nearly enough of that kind of writing in this latest installment for my tastes.
Mania Grade: C
Art Rating: A-
Packaging Rating: B+
Text/Translatin Rating: B+
Age Rating: 18 & Up
Released By: Dark Horse
Orientation: Right to Left
Series: Gunsmith Cats: Burst