Day of Revolution Vol. #01 - Mania.com



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Info:

  • Art Rating: C+
  • Packaging Rating: A-
  • Text/Translatin Rating: C+
  • Age Rating: 16 & Up
  • Released By: Digital Manga Publishing
  • MSRP: 12.95
  • Pages: 200
  • ISBN: 1- 569708908
  • Size: A5
  • Orientation: Right to Left

Day of Revolution Vol. #01

By Eduardo M. Chavez     February 01, 2007
Release Date: September 20, 2006


Day of Revolution Vol.#01
© Digital Manga Publishing


Creative Talent
Writer/Artist:Tsuda Miyoko
Translated by:N/A
Adapted by:N/A

What They Say
Kei Yoshikawa is a feisty young boy, troubled by problems at home and annoyed at school. One day after a sudden fainting spell, Kei is examined by the doctor and given shocking news - he is actually supposed to be a girl! Although physically male, Kei's chromosomes show that "he" is female. Seeing a chance to start life anew, Kei and his family arrive at the decision for him to begin living as a girl. As "Kei" disappears and "Megumi" enrolls back into school, his/her girl pal Makoto is Kei's only ally who knows his secret. However, his former male friends figure things out before long; and suddenly, "Megumi" is the object of their affections! Feeling femininely weak and vulnerable for the first time, Kei/Megumi develops an aversion for all boys. Dressed like a girl but still feeling like a boy, mixed-up Kei/Megumi feels more comfortable being with Makoto... what's a gender-confused kid supposed to do?

The Review
Packaging:
DMP does a fine job with this title but I have to say there were a few details that made me confused. On the cover DMP uses Shinshokan's original design featuring both versions of the main character. The image does a good job presenting the different sides of Kei/Megumi's personality as well as the different looks. This image is presented on a dust jacket on the A5 sized graphic novel. Take the dust jacket off and you will see a special pair of comic strips that the mangaka drew for the series. I have no clue what the punch-line is referring to but I love the addition of this omake.

Inside DMP's printing looks good. I did have a couple alignment issues with my copy but outside of that the book looked good. No color plates were provided but original volume and chapter headers were kept in this print.

At the end of the book are a few pages of ato-gaki and more omake. The comments from the mangaka are great; providing great insight to how this manga was made (and how hard it was for her to keep motivated). But this part was very confusing to me. Apparently this series was not to be continued when the first tankobon was completed in Japan. So in her ato-gaki Tsuda-sensei believes that was going to be it for the series. She shares some things that could through readers off for volume two. And I am hoping she hasn't tossed in spoilers accidentally as well. I don't know if DMP could have handled this better without a backlash from fans. Hmm.

Artwork:
Tsuda's art is effective but it not very impressive. I say it's effective because it renders the main theme well. This is a gender-bender manga and the lead can play both roles well the way Tsuda draws her. That can be said about some of the other characters also. And for the three or four girls in this book three of them look exactly alike (meaning that those three look like guys). The other girl's design changes mid-way through the book. And because this manga is set at school, I didn't have a chance to look at costume designs.

The layout for this manga is very confusing. I had a hard time with the pacing and tone. There were times when I thought a chapter should have ended and it didn't. For a while I thought that there were pages missing for that reason. Backgrounds are not done with much detail either.

SFX/Text:
The translation for this title sounds good. First, they have kept names in their proper order. So when characters refer to each other by their last names (often done by teenage males) DMP did not change that. Some of the school terminology was a little weird though. Class president should have been class representative. I don't know if the characters used senior in the original text but terms like senpai and kohai were not used here. This last point is a matter of preference (just like honorifics, which were not used either) but they influenced my reading experience negatively.

SFX might get some attention as DMP handled these in a unique way. They are all subbed using a small font as not to compromise Tsuda's art. You know even though this is a comedy, I hardly noticed the SFX in this manga. That might be a good thing, but I almost wanted to see them more often for emphasis.

Contents: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
Megumi's life was never really easy. At home his parents seem to be on the verge of divorce. They argue all the time and from if tone of their voices is any indication they are no where near resolving this problem. Megumi has had his personal issues as well. Physically he is a little undersized. His body is a little on the frail side also. If you were to look at Megumi you might confuse him for a girl at times and his friends at school do not hesitate to remind him of that.

Well there in lies the problem Megumi really has. You see Megumi is really a girl! He grew up with masculine features but as his hormones are catching up to him. He can no longer call himself Kei. He possibly should not go to his old school and he should forget about his old friends (they were all on the verge of being delinquents anyway). Hormonal therapy and some surgery should be the end of Kei. Megumi is who he has always been; she should be free to live a new life without the fears that there will be people out there trying to out him/her.

Someone forgot think that far ahead! Can't tell if it was mom and dad who are too busy playing dress up with their new daughter or if it was just a bad decision on Megumi's part to go back to a place where Kei was once a school idol in the making. Sad to say now the boys are after her. Furthermore, her friends are the ones that are all over her!

I told you Megumi had problems!

Comments
Gender bender manga... I just cannot seem to shake these titles for some reason. Day of Revolution takes on this manga favorite and takes it a step forward. Most of the time when I run into a gender-bender the whole concept is comedic device. Guy gets splashed with water and turns into buxom girl. Freak magician turns pre-teen boy into girl ruining potential yanki's life forever. Girl enrolls in new school to join high school boy's basketball/track team; for some reason doesn't use the same locker room as teammates!

Revolution's gender-bending is just that - nothing but laughs at the expense of the lead character. Actually the young woman, who thought she was a young man, had to undergo tremendous efforts to make this work out. Hormonal therapy and surgery were only the start. Kei goes through behavioral training as well daily to try to make her life easier when dealing with new people. She did not want this new change and throughout this first volume struggles with the "new life". The consequences are there and you can see the mangaka has her cast understanding those responsibilities. However, Tsuda makes sure to make the tone light and casual. This allows the characters to have a light-hearted attitude when dealing with each other. This formula is pretty conventional but I felt that as a reverse harem with a twist Revolution had its moments.

As far as stories go this would have been a horrible one-shot. So much could have been left undone. Fortunately for readers and for DMP, there will be more days for Revolution to experience. Conversely, I don't know if this really is the type of manga that will attract many readers. Fun title with decent art, but I can see why the mangaka had a hard time working on this series. She added too many characters. She didn't know if it was going to end early. She had to get her assistants to motivate her to get chapters done. On paper this book changes styles midway. The pacing is stop and go. And most importantly at its core, this story is not original. No real revolution despite the potential for something special.

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