Guardian Angel Getten Vol. #01 - Mania.com



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Info:

  • Art Rating: B+
  • Packaging Rating: A
  • Text/Translatin Rating: B+
  • Age Rating: 13 & Up
  • Released By: Gutsoon!
  • MSRP: 9.95
  • Pages: 184
  • ISBN: 1-59116-104-5
  • Size: B6
  • Orientation: Right to Left

Guardian Angel Getten Vol. #01

By Eduardo M. Chavez     June 13, 2005
Release Date: September 01, 2003


Guardian Angel Getten Vol.#01
© Gutsoon!


Creative Talent
Writer/Artist:Sakurano Minene
Translated by:N/A
Adapted by:

What They Say
What would you do if you were blessed with a cute and magical guardian angel?

14-year-old Shichiri Tasuke is your ordinary junior high school student - well sort of. His life is a little lonely, since his family has left him alone at home while they go travel the world over, only occasionally sending letters and postcards.

This lonely and uneventful life gets shaken up the day Tasuke receives the magical Shitenrin ring from his father in China. From out of this ring appears Shao Lin, the Guardian Angel Getten. She proclaims that she is here to protect her new master from all forms of danger and will stay by his side forever.

But having been locked in the Shitenrin for hundreds of years, Shao knows nothing of the modern world. Sometimes it seems she causes more problems than she solves. Now, Tasuke must figure out how to handle this beautiful, naive and magical angel.

The Review
Packaging:
Personally I feel this is possibly Gustoon!'s best presentation. The paperweight is good. They provided the original volume header art and the message from the author was a nice touch. Yeah the SFX were handled a little strange. There are not many to begin with but some are translated and some are not so its a little confusing.

Gustoon! used are really nice piece for the cover. Originally from a pencil board that Gustoon! was giving as a special prize, we see Shao Lin with her long hair flowing holding the Shitenrin, which has Tasuke in it. There are a lot of pinks and purples on this cover so it doesn't look very shonen but as Sakurano-sensei noted this isn't your regular shonen/shojo story.

The back cover has some pink flowers with a small and cute Star Spirit Rishu. Very cute and it works well with the logo and flowery pattern.

Artwork:
Sakurano's character designs are cute. Not extremely long as some other bishojo character designs, Shao and Shoko are cute in everyday cloths or bathing suits. Personally I do not care for Tasuke's designs too much. His hair and his costume designs are just a little to strange for me and it leaves me feeling as if he is a mess.

The layout is actually pretty nice. Subtle but still active it really gives some good perspective. But for those looking for fan-service the layout is not going to help you this time. Backgrounds are solid but they are not very crucial to the manga so far so Sakurano doesn't really work on them too hard.

SFX/Text:
As was the case with all of Gutsoon!'s translations, Getten reads and sounds very good. The interactions and personalities come through very well. Honorifics are used here and there and that is better than completely ignoring them, right.

If there was a flaw it has to come from the inconsistent SFX translation. Some of them are translated and these are active SFX (actions or feelings instead of actual sounds). I am not sure why this became Gustoon!'s policy, but it was not a good compromise.

Contents: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
Introducing lonely junior high student, Shichiri Tasuke! Like many manga/anime kids he is living alone in a large home while the rest of his family is out of the country. Tasuke spends his time going to school, hanging out at home and eating prepared meals he gets from convenience stores. Its a sad life really one that is really getting to him.

So when he receives his regular care package from his family he finds a pretty unique item. According to the letter from his father that accompanied the package, the item is a shitenrin. It is a bracelet or bangle that looks like any other to most people. But to those with a pure heart, there could be things inside. At first Tasuke did not want to fall for it. It looked like a nice hoop, one large enough to fit around his arm. But it didn't look magical. At second glance, though, he realized that he couldn't see through it. There was a dark void in the center of the ring and from that darkness popped out a young lady, by the name of Shao Lin.

Immediately, Tasuke's world was thrown for a spin. He had no idea what was going on. To make matters worse Shao was calling him her master and promised to never leave her side. Shao also for some reason appears to not be very familiar with modern times so Tasuke is usually left teaching Shao about modern society as he tries to prevent her doing something dangerous or illegal.

Comments
In this first volume we get to see Tasuke in some of his regular settings. School and home present slightly different sides of Tasuke but we still get to see the quiet lonely part of him that Shao Lin wants to protect.

Eventually, Sakurano-sensei introduces a few more characters to spice up the plot. The delinquent Yamanobe Shoko, is very cute and very mischievous. She livens things up by preying on Shao's ignorance of modern times. She is possibly the funniest character in the series so far and really picks up the pace when she makes her appearances.

The rival is Miyauchi Izumo. He basically is a two faced older guy that has his eye on Shao Lin. Similar to Mitaka Shun, from Maison Ikkoku, Miyauchi is suave, good looking, mature and a hustler. He can turn it on and off when he pleases but fortunate for Tasuke he is pretty clueless about the relationship that Shao and Tasuke have.

For almost this entire volume things moved on in a predictable manner. Loner is at home, parents are out of the country; loner meets magical being that brings him happiness but at the same time she is pretty clueless about society; loner has issues about how he feels towards magical being and things get even worse when a rival starts to make his move on the magical being; tension and comedy continues. Really how often must this be repeated before this gets old?

If the characters weren't so one-dimensional then this story would be same old same old. In the past you may have read stories where the loner has some hobbies, some friends, some ambition but just did not have the girl. Tasuke is first very young and he is just lacking any initiative at all. When Shao Lin leaves him for a moment, he was lonely for a moment but proceeded to dine on a rice ball while obsessing over how cute Shao was. When his father's pet carp died he could not bring himself to getting a new fish so his tank is left empty until Shao gets goldfish for it. Tasuke is a unique situation with a lot of room to grow so I feel his character can really change throughout the eleven GNs in this series. Shao is just eye-candy for now. Yeah she is cute since she is ignorant of modern times but she is also naive and pure of heart. Her character is another manga/anime clich but her ability to use Star Spirits is interesting so she does have some unique qualities.

While I have to say that Guardian Angel Getten does not feel very original so far its a nice story. The characters so far are set up to have a lot of potential. You never know where naivety will take you so having characters like Tasuke and Shao Lin learning to know each other is pretty interesting.

At the same time this premise isn't new and so far Getten does not really make any moves to improve on the genre. Its pretty predictable, right down to the mandatory beach chapter with the high hip bathing suits and the obvious follow up a summer festival at a shinto shrine chapter (yukata fans will dig this).

Good but not worth a full recommendation.

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