Kagerou-Nostalgia Vol. #01 - Mania.com

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  • Art Rating: C+
  • Packaging Rating: B
  • Text/Translatin Rating: A
  • Age Rating: 13 & Up
  • Released By: ADV Manga
  • MSRP: 9.99
  • Pages: 186
  • ISBN: 1-4139-0053-4
  • Size: Tall B6
  • Orientation: Right to Left

Kagerou-Nostalgia Vol. #01

By Megan Lavey     September 06, 2004
Release Date: May 01, 2004

Kagerou-Nostalgia Vol.#01
© ADV Manga

Creative Talent
Writer/Artist:Satomi Kubo
Translated by:Eiko McGregor
Adapted by:

What They Say
For centuries, the lands of medieval Japan have been plagued by conflict and the people are no strangers to suffering. Blood has been continuously shed by the swords of two power-hungry clans whose greed has taken the lives of many soldiers.The battles seem endless, until the eleventh princess of the Hikami clan is brutally murdered, and a new era is born. The souls of those who lost their lives centuries ago have been resurrected, housed within the bodies of an extraordinary group of teenagers, and they soon realize that they must ban together to once again face their enemy?the bloodthirsty Shogun. The Shogun is the student of a master of the black arts, and the young soldiers? only chance is to develop their own supernatural power...

The Review
ADV goes with a basic black here, with blue kanji on the front and back and a picture of Kazuma on the front. There's also a short blurb indicating that there is a manga series that comes before this one, and that these are the resurrected souls from that series. A simple summary is on the back.

While the characters are drawn well, the scenes are cluttered and the layout is somewhat difficult to navigate. This isn't helped by the pratice that ADV deploys at times to leave every single piece of kana and kanji that's not encased in thought balloons and word bubbles intact. It only makes the complicated layout even worse to read. There is a color page here, featuring Goki - a character that really could be Himura Kenshin's relative.

The translation of the book reads pretty well and nothing jumps out at me here other than the inclusion of kana and kanji into the artwork.

Content: (May contain spoilers)
Once upon a time, there were two clans known as the Hatfields and the McCoys...

Okay, okay, maybe that's a little bit too off track. But, Kagerou-Nostalgia does revolve around two clans, the Hi and the Yu. When the last king of the Yu was reborn 500 years ago, a group of six people tried to seal that spirit. Then they were reborn into six new bodies and must band together to fight the same fight they fought in their previous lives.

The book immediately plunges into what looks like are the climatic events of the first series, then launches into the story of those left behind and of the six in their reincarnated bodies. It's not that far into the story that I encountered one of the most disturbing scenes - Goki's mother, Ran, renouncing her womanhood. She insists that she can't see her son again until she is a man. I found that quite freaky and kept plowing ahead in the book.

There are some humorous touches to the book. The scene where Kazuma asks Akira to inpersonate Princess Mio is hilarious, as well as her attempts to cram as much knowledge about being a princess into her head as possible.

But this is the one bright spot in a horrible mish-mash of plot and characters that has a horrible layout and requires a good knowledge of what happened in the first series (which has four volumes) in order to understand anything. It's the first time in a long time that I've gotten so confused, I got a headache while reading the manga. Attempts at a second and third reading did not help matters any.

Over the course of this book, I was so lost, it wasn't even funny. This book really does depend on you knowing what happened in the previous series. Unfortunately, there's no clue provided here as to what happened before, only that something did occur. The blurb on the front cover doesn't begin to prepare you for the knowledge that you need in order to fully grasp the ongoing storyline here. My best advice is to hit the Internet and find a summary of the original Kagerou-Nostalgia series before reading this book. Otherwise, I'd pass on this series until the first one is brought over.


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