Kekkaishi Vol. #06 -

Anime/Manga Reviews

Mania Grade: B+

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  • Art Rating: B+
  • Packaging Rating: B
  • Text/Translatin Rating: B+
  • Age Rating: 13 & Up
  • Released By: Viz Media
  • MSRP: 9.99
  • Pages: 200
  • ISBN: 1421504871
  • Size: B6
  • Orientation: Right to Left

Kekkaishi Vol. #06

By Jarred Pine     August 30, 2006
Release Date: August 15, 2006

Kekkaishi Vol.#06
© Viz Media

Creative Talent
Writer/Artist:Yellow Tanabe
Translated by:Yuko Sawada
Adapted by:

What They Say
The governing body of kekkaishi, the secretive shadow organization, sends a young tough named Gen to help patrol Karasumori and protect it from the increasing numbers of ayakashi spirits. But Yoshimori isn't about to sit down and let this punk move in on his territory. It's a kekkai super showdown! Who has the stronger barrier magic?

The Review
With each new volume of Kekkaishi, manga-ka Yellow Tanabe continues to impress with his ability to take familiar shounen formulas and clichis and turn them into something that feels fresh and invigorating. This sixth volume sees the introduction of the Shounen Rival; a character who will clash with our main hero, Yoshimori, and push each other to become stronger. However, with the groundwork that Yellow Tanabe has meticulously laid in previous installments, along with the layers of unknown building around Karasumori, the introduction of the rival is welcomed with open arms.

Gen Shishio, a member of the Night Troops, was sent by the Shadow Organization (specifically Yoshimoris brother, Masamori) to help Yoshimori protect the ancient holy grounds of Karasumori. After an infiltration by a mysterious ayakashi concealed within human skin, mystery and intrigue are abound as Yoshimori learns about a plot by other nefarious ayakashi to attack Karasumori. While Gens bitterly angry attitude gets him off on the wrong foot with the weak Yoshimori, he soon learns that he is not alone in his feelings of isolation and the need to protect.

This sixth volume definitely finds the storyline escalating more into familiar battle oriented shounen material, but at the same time Yellow Tanabe has made sure to keep up the level of mystery surrounding Karasumori and the personal relationships between his characters. Youre invested in Yoshimori, Tokine, and Grandpa Sumimura, so watching the secretive plot unfold behind the scenes is quite the engaging reading experience. They are all about to be caught up in something that will test each and every one of them, and as a reader I want to be there when it happens. There are also no long, drawn out fights or adventure arcs that are typical with shounen titles in this vein. All the action is coming to Karasumori, which allows Yellow Tanabe to be more focused and concentrate on his strengths--the characters and the dynamics shared between them.

VIZ continues to do a good job overall with the production. Id like to see some sharper printing (some moiri and dark tones) and the script can be a little goofy with its overuse of the expression Darn. Kekkaishi is a title that is vastly underappreciated or unknown by so many readers, and I would highly encourage everyone to give this shounen manga a chance.


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