Geobreeders (1) Vol. #02 - Mania.com



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Mania Grade: A-

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Info:

  • Art Rating: A-
  • Packaging Rating: A-
  • Text/Translatin Rating: D
  • Age Rating: 3 & Up
  • Released By: CPM Press
  • MSRP: 15.95
  • Pages: 206
  • ISBN: 1-56219-933-1
  • Size: A4
  • Orientation: Left to Right

Geobreeders (1) Vol. #02

By Mike Dungan     April 28, 2004
Release Date: August 01, 2000


Geobreeders (1) Vol.#02
© CPM Press


Creative Talent
Writer/Artist:Akihiro Ito
Translated by:Laura Jackson and Yoko Kobayashi
Adapted by:

What They Say
Kagura Security is a group of five beautiful women, led by their hot-blooded redhaired president Yuka Kikushima, and one lucky man, the newly-recruited Yoichi Taba, who are engaged in a struggle to disperse the Phantom Cats that lurk in the shadows of the human world. When large corporations are menaced by supernatural forces, they call in the experienced professionals of the Kagura Agency, who use the latest in computer technology as well as ancient magic to battle poltergeists, demons, and their major nemesis, the ghostly Phantom Cats. In this second exciting volume of Geobreeders adventures, the whole Kagura Security team takes on the Phantom Cats in an all-out, seaborne battle, and get caught in the crossfire between the Ministy of Welfare, the Phantom Cats, and the Navy. Action and laughter combine when the waterways around Tokyo get filled with babes, bazookas, and battleships, blasting away at each other with abandon.

The Review
The second volume of Geobreeders opens with Irie, the creepy man from the Ministry of Health and Welfare making an unannounced visit to Taba's apartment. He's there to offer Taba a job. That job offer is something he seriously considers when his next assignment finds him fighting phantom cats on a skyscraper that's still under construction. Kagura manage to capture the phantom cat, but not without doing some serious damage to the structure.

Everyone retires to the bathhouse for a bit of fun and fanservice. In what will become a Geobreeders tradition, the end of each mission will find everyone at the bathhouse to ease away the tensions of their job. Some of the questions concerning Kagura actually get asked, such as why seal the cats? Why not just delete them? What happens to them? Who wrote the program for sealing them? There are no answers, but they're all valid questions. Taba also finally names the young phantom cat who's been living with him, calling her Maya. He's been working for Kagura for a year now, and he realizes he doesn't know anything more about them now than when he started.

When a phantom cat who has grown disgruntled with the Black Cat decides to kill Taba, Maya comes to his rescue. A handgrenade barely avoids killing him, and Taba is able to blow him out of the apartment using a seal, where the Black Cat himself eliminates the renegade cat. Maya, who until now has almost never spoken, speaks quite a bit in this chapter, first warning the phantom cat that she will defend Taba, then telling Taba that she can't go against the Black Cat, but she'll do what she can for him. Unfortunately, Taba heard none of it because his ears were still ringing from the explosion.

Next up, both Kagura and the Hounds are trying to stop the phantom cats who are trying to ship something out by boat. The battle rages through the canals of Tokyo until it moves out into the open sea. A navy destroyer is targeted by the cats who take over it's guns. Taba gets in over his head and has to be rescued by Takami on a personal watercraft. With the Navy ship now becoming their enemy, the Hounds and Kagura join forces. Part of the agreement is that they must wear uniforms instead of the swimsuits they're wearing. Yuka ends up in a sailor schoolgirl outfit, Taba is in a black school outfit, Takami is dressed in a school track outfit, a mortified Eiko is wearing a nurses outfit, Yuu is dressed as a stewardess, and Maki is wearing a Hanna Miller-style waitress uniform that emphasises her already well-emphasized breasts. The phantom cat has taken over a small robotic tank nearby and the battle moves to a highrise parking garage. They're in a car but they're on the roof with nowhere to go. In an amazing sequence, Yuu launches the car onto the roof of the building across the street, then down to the ground without killing anyone. The tank doesn't fair so well. The cat is forced out of it where it's surrounded by the Hounds. The cat is revealed to the the beautiful young female cat that was with the Black Cat in the previous volume, and something of a mentor to Maya. She's been creating a diversion for the Black Cat all this time, and as she's dying, she tells Taba to take care of Maya.


Comments
The second volume of Geobreeders is more of what we've come to expect from Ito: Girls, guns, action and comedy. The mysteries continue to deepen around Kagura, and with both Irie and the Black Cat showing an interest in him, his role is bigger than he suspects. The art continues to improve as Ito finds his stride with his character designs. The action is smooth and flows well, always moving the story along, never impeding it. The book is printed with flipped art, reading from left to right. All sound effects are translated and retouched into English. Unfortunately, the art has been edited to remove all nudity. Either nipples were removed from breasts or swimsuits or underwear were drawn on the characters. Editing art for any reason other than to make it readable in English is simply not acceptable. The art quality continues to be very poor. Screentones are muddy and indistinct and lines are blurry. The cover is an action shot of Taba and Yuka with an explosion in the background. The back cover is just text, a couple of blurbs and nothing more. The text describing the story is just as inaccurate as the first volume. The back cover would have been better had it used some of the excellent art available and some editing of the story description.

As much as I enjoy Geobreeders, I can't recommend the original release of this title. The editing of art to remove nudity is unacceptable, and the art reproduction is terrible. CPM stopped publishing Geobreeders with the fifth volume, despite the fact that it's still an ongoing series in Japan with 9 volumes out at the time of this review. One hopes that with CPM relaunching Geobreeders in a new format, the editing of art and art reproduction issues will be addressed.

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