Di Gi Charat Vol. #03 - Mania.com



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Info:

  • Art Rating: A-
  • Packaging Rating: B+
  • Text/Translatin Rating: B-
  • Age Rating: 13 & Up
  • Released By: Viz Media
  • MSRP: 12.98
  • Pages: 168
  • ISBN: 1-59116-143-6
  • Size: B6
  • Orientation: Right to Left

Di Gi Charat Vol. #03

By Eduardo M. Chavez     April 18, 2004
Release Date: July 01, 2003


Di Gi Charat Vol.#03
© Viz Media


Creative Talent
Writer/Artist:Broccoli (mutliple artists)
Translated by:Mari Morimoto
Adapted by:

What They Say
FAMILY VALUES

Poor little Digiko. Her life is getting more and more complicated by the minute. Not only must she work for peanuts at a hobby shop in Japan, but she must also outwit her rival Piyoko and the Dark Gema Gema Gang.

But Digiko's not the only one with problems. Piyoko's got plenty to worry about, too. Besides trying to topple the hardworking bunch at Gamers, the pixie fom planet Analog must also mediate the daily squabble of her own evil crew.

To Piyoko, the Dark Gema Gema Gang is the only family she's ever known. But now she's questioning her own family values. In other words, how much is her family worth? If she had a single yen for every hissy fit she's had to endure, she'd be a very, very rich little girl.


The Review
FAMILY VALUES

Poor little Digiko. Her life is getting more and more complicated by the minute. Not only must she work for peanuts at a hobby shop in Japan, but she must also outwit her rival Piyoko and the Dark Gema Gema Gang.

But Digiko's not the only one with problems. Piyoko's got plenty to worry about, too. Besides trying to topple the hardworking bunch at Gamers, the pixie fom planet Analog must also mediate the daily squabble of her own evil crew.

To Piyoko, the Dark Gema Gema Gang is the only family she's ever known. But now she's questioning her own family values. In other words, how much is her family worth? If she had a single yen for every hissy fit she's had to endure, she'd be a very, very rich little girl.

Packaging:
Viz does a good job with presentation by giving a nice cover with Piyoko on the front. They use the same art as the japanese for the front cover (with minor adjustments for people who cannot read japanese). The spine also has kana and english, which i felt was a nice touch. One the back there is the ever present blurb about the series and this volume with a group shot of the Black Gema Gema Gang boys. I am really pleased that VIZ did not re-do this series in their new graphic novel formatting (used for each sub-category of manga in their library: Action, Editors Choice, Shojo, Shonen Jump.) By keeping the original art, original size aspect (B6) and the original orientaion along the same formatting as vol 1 & 2 I really felt that they really treated this series very well. In my opinion it has the best presentation values of any of the Action line manga they have.

Artwork:
The art is a mixed bag. With 14 different artists (including koge-donbo) collaborating the art styles are really varied. Its pretty hard to describe them all but I felt it was pretty interesting to see the different takes on the character designs from koge-donbo.

Orientation/SFX:
Published right-to-left in a B6 sized GN Viz keeps all of the original ascpects for this title.

Some people might not like this but SFX are left intact and are translated in a glossary at the end of the book. VIZ also takes the next step by translating the SFX in romaji as well as with its english equivilent.

Text:
The translation by Viz is good but it leaves a lot to be desired. Degiko is "Dijiko" (how many versions of her name are there in English. She is a female Lupin/Lupan/Rupan/Wolf). Honorifics are not left in but at least they do not have these characters sounding like thugs. (ahem) The cat-gals also do not use their trademarked "Nyo" and "Myu" to finish sentences, instead Viz has them saying "meow".

Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
For most of us manga is like a book or short story but its accompanied by artwork, laid out from a comic artists perspective and given SFX too add even more depth besides the visual and the personal.

All that changes when you have an anthology manga. Often most skits do not tie in with each other. More often than not most of the skits are not a part of the "world" that the characters are regularly in.

Anthologies can take some time to get used to but fortunately that is not the case with Di Gi Charat.

Jumping into volume three is pretty easy. With a quick look at the character bios you pretty much know what the dynamic is going to be like for these characters, alien and earthling (???).

For the most part this volume deals with the antics of the Black Gema Gema Gang (known in this series as the Dark Gema Gema Gang). Whether its Piyoko trying to conquer the Akihabara branch of Gamers or its Ky, Rik and Coo struggling to express their loyalty and affection for their kawaii leader there usually are a few laughs, a couple question marks and twisted but usually happy ending to each short.

Chapters range from 1 page to 15 so there really isnt much plot or any real story telling going on but fortunately there is an underlying continuity amongst the chaos that this anthology manga could present.... Digiko is dangerous but she's cute = someone you must get rid of to reach the top!! That premise carries this volume and it makes for a fun read full of fast not always sharp wit and visual gags.


Comments
While many people will be thrown off by anthology manga, I have to say that this was a good read. Possibly almost as good as volume 1, IMHO. Getting to know a little more about the Black Gema Gema Gang and cute lil' Piyoko is a hoot and with Gema and Digiko getting less panel time you know they will do their best to steal the show when their are on.

Sure these shorts can be pretty sketchy and almost spastic but the humor amongst these friends are great. And come on who doesn't like a catgirl (even if she does have laser beams coming out of her eyes!!!)

Fun

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