A must buy for ‘Oh My Goddess!’ fans, whether fans of the anime or the manga, and a worthy addition to the library of many art book collectors.
Writer/Artist: Kosuke Fujishima
Translation: Douglas Varenas, Dana Lewis, Alan Glason, Toren Smith and Dan Kanemitsu
What They Say
What's inside? Let's start with what's outside: a metallic gold embossed cover with french flaps, featuring the Goddess sisters on the front, and Belldandy and her angel Holy Bell on the interior. Then the contents kick off with a wacky intro to the Oh My Goddess! saga, in the form of an eight-page "fan" manga by Neon Genesis Evangelion Angel designer Yoshitou Asari! Then, OMG! Colors's namesake: four classic Oh My Goddess! stories, each focusing on a different goddess, and colorized under Kosuke Fujishima's supervision. Finally, an exhaustive "Encyclopedia" section cross-references the people, places, and things of the first thirty volumes of OMG!, including the differences between the two English versions, and many in-jokes about the series never before revealed!
This title has been a long time coming from Dark Horse and they hit it out of the park with their reproduction. Large format, French flaps, a holographic cover, glossy pages and 134 color pages make this book a real beauty. The inside of the French flaps have holographic pictures of each goddess with their angel. The majority of the book’s stories are from the first thirteen volumes of the series. Each story focuses on a different goddess; Belldandy, Urd, Peorth, and Skuld. There is also an extensive encyclopedia of the ‘Oh My Goddess’ universe including characters and items. One of the aspects I found most interesting was the section explaining all the rules and mechanics of the various tools used by goddesses and demons.
The four stories in this book range from the first volume to the thirteenth volume in this long running series. This provides a look at Fujishima’s art as it changed over his career. Initially, his art focused less on the goddesses hair, usually flat to their head. With time, Belldandy was given her iconic three-antennae hair style along with the long flowing hair of the other goddesses. With this, the girls became more attractive and their faces more expressive. Overall, this book is a good examination of his art overtime.
Dark Horse claims that ‘Oh My Goddess!’ is the longest running manga series in the U.S. I assume it is true, as an examination of their translations over time will show. The original translations really Americanized the dialogue, but with the most recent renditions of the series, Dark Horse has really done an excellent job. This ‘Colors’ book shows the most recent translations and the effort to make the series more acceptable to today’s American otaku is commendable.
Contents (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers):
The first of the four stories in this book is about the first meeting between Belldandy and Keiichi. As he accidentally calls the Goddess Help Hotline, he summons Belldandy. She tells him she will grant any of his wishes and then she can go back to her job. Keiichi isn’t buying it, so he jokingly says he wants her to stay with him forever. The wish is in and Belldandy is stuck. She can never go against the wish and now Keiichi is going to have to figure out how to stay in his men only dorm with a goddess.
Urd may be my favorite goddess and her story is one of the most touching stories focusing on her character. Due to a malfunction with Yggdrasil, Urd has been shrunken into a little child. She can’t stand the idea until she meets a boy named Shohei. The whole situation is very out of character for Urd, but that is what makes the story so enjoyable as Urd seems to truly fall in love with the boy. Of course, it is no surprise that Shohei falls in love with Urd, her being a goddess and all.
Peorth’s story is a bit sexier than the others, but just as funny. Somehow, Keiichi is so dumb with luck that he inadvertently calls another branch of the Goddess Help Hotline, summoning another goddess named Peorth. Peorth is quite different from Belldandy as she uses her womanly charms to bring pleasure to the callers of the helpline. Unfortunately, Peorth can’t return home until Keiichi makes a wish, and seeing the sorry state of his relationship with Belldandy, Peorth assumes Keiichi’s deepest desire is to get laid. That would be my guess too. Will Peorth be successful or will Keiichi stay true to Belldandy?
Skuld has always had a somewhat tough place in the family as she is the youngest and completely untalented in magic. Belldandy tells her she will eventually grow into it, but that doesn’t make it any easier for Skuld to put up with Urd’s taunting. Being a young goddess, Skuld just doesn’t know what the true source of power is. However, the strange feelings building inside her for a boy that has started hanging around may be the learning lesson she needs. Is young love blossoming in the Morisato household?
This ‘Colors’ release is a great book, especially for a long running series. The inclusion of a series encyclopedia containing descriptions of all the characters and items is just plain awesome. For readers just getting started with the series or long time fans that leave the series for awhile before returning, this is a useful tool. I often find myself reading one of the volumes where an old character pops up and I can’t remember who they are or what volume they were in. I certainly don’t feel like flipping through 30 volumes to find that character and refresh my memory. But if I did, this ‘Colors’ release also has a ‘Chapters Summary’ section that makes it easy to find when a particular story arc took place.
With everything I just described, readers should understand that the four stories in this book are not new. They are stories from various books in the first thirteen volumes and each story focuses on a different goddess. Also, with the exception of Belldandy’s introduction to Keiichi story, the other three stories are among my favorites.
Great book and highly recommended for fans of ‘Oh My Goddess’, and $19.95 for a book like this is a pretty good deal.