Psycho Busters Vol. #02 -

Anime/Manga Reviews

Mania Grade: D+

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  • Art Rating: B+
  • Packaging Rating: B
  • Text/Translatin Rating: C
  • Age Rating: 16 & Up
  • Released By: Del Rey
  • MSRP: 10.95
  • Pages: 208
  • ISBN: 0-345-50172-1
  • Size: B6
  • Orientation: Right to Left
  • Series: Psycho Busters

Psycho Busters Vol. #02

By Greg Hackmann     June 23, 2008
Release Date: March 31, 2008

Psycho Busters Vol.#02
© Del Rey

Creative Talent
Writer/Artist:Akinari Nao
Translated by:Stephen Paul
Adapted by:Stephen Paul

What They Say
Ever since Kakeru met the gorgeous Ayano, he's been in a whole new world. Ayano and her friends are powerful psychics... and it's possible Kakeru's one, too, but his powers remain hidden. With a sinister government organization pursuing the psychic teens, Kakeru knows Ayano's in danger. Can he protect the girl he loves - even if he's just an ordinary guy?

The Review
Now that Kaito's been brought back into the fold, the whole team has formed a weird kind of family unit in Kakeru's house while waiting for Joi to wake up. In the meantime, Kakeru takes up ogling Ayano as a hobby; these feelings gradually develop until he pledges to protect her at any cost to himself. Shortly after Kakeru delivers this pledges, Joi wakes up and delivers the bad news that Ikushima will eventually cause the apocalypse -- and to make matters worse, Kakeru is probably the only one who can save them.

Fortunately, Joi's psychic powers also foretell a simple solution to the problem: Kakeru just needs to deliver a few stacks of magazines to his school, while making sure to always step on staircases with his left foot first. (Seriously.) What Joi forgot to consider was that Kakeru is, well, an idiot; he eventually forgets which foot will lead to the destruction of the world as he knows it, and winds up ambushed by the Farmers' psychics when he uses the wrong foot. This ambush mainly involves Takemaru, an ultra-sadistic psychic with an even more powerful form of Sho's "psychokinetic" powers from the last volume. Maya drops in for a brief (and mostly ineffective) attack, but ducks out pretty quickly when it doesn't go anywhere.

After the funny (if crude) few opening pages, the story goes completely downhill as Aoki takes many of the complaints I had with first volume and amplifies them to a frustrating level. There are little snippets of plot advancement peppered throughout the second volume to tease the reader; but otherwise, the whole thing degenerates into a pile of tacky shonen manga clichs, uninspired action sequences, and often-tasteless fanservice. The fact that Joi defuses a psychic attack by flashing his teacher's breasts (without even asking her first, no less) should give you an idea of the depths that Psycho Busters's writing has plummeted to. And the less said about the sentimental nonsense that caps off this volume, the better.

If there's a single silver lining to this dark cloud, it's that Nao's art is just as strong as ever. But unless you're reading Psycho Busters just for the artwork's sake, I can't really find enough redeeming value in the second installment to justify picking it up.


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