Mania Grade: A+
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- Art Rating: B+
- Packaging Rating: B
- Text/Translatin Rating: B+
- Age Rating: 15 & Up
- Released By: Gutsoon!
- MSRP: 9.95
- Pages: 204
- ISBN: 1-932454-21-7
- Size: Tall B6
- Orientation: Right to Left
Revenge of the Mofloun Vol. #01
By Eduardo M. Chavez
August 19, 2004
Release Date: February 01, 2004
Revenge of the Mofloun Vol.#01
Writer/Artist:Ueno Jiro & Ono Yoichiro
Adapted by:What They Say
When terror strikes and lives are in the balance, one man must find the courage to be a hero.
A simple domestic flight turns into a national crisis when terrorists hijack a passenger plane with the intent of crashing it in the heart of Tokyo. With the crew dead, an ordinary entertainer is put in the pilot's seat, nad only he can save the thousands of lives at risk.
Top manga artist Ono Yoichiro teams up with writer Ueno Jiro to create a hot new political thriller.The Review
Like most of Gutsoon!'s GNs this series is presented in a tall B6 in its original right to left format. The cover art that Gutsoon! uses here is a larger version of the one their parent company Coamix had on the Bunch Comic version. Here we see an angered Sano Yohei surrounded by fire with planes in his foreground to the right and an ominous mouflon looming behind at the top right. One the back is flight JEL 807 in flames on a Tokyo skyline background. Kinda tacky.
Logo Check! Gutsoon! uses the original logo as the subtitle for the English version. Both versions feature "revenge of" in blue with "mouflon" in red with all of it on top of silouette of a ram head. Underneath all of this is the romaji reading for the Japanese title "Houfuku no Mouflon." Nice!
Inside there is a pair of messages from the artist team of Ono and Ueno, along with an ad for "Fist of the North Star: Master's Edition."
Ono's art is very nice. Very thick strong lines are used on the nicely proportioned characters and detailed backgrounds alike. Character desings are fashionable and current. Backgrounds are accurate so when the jet flies over the Rainbow Bridge, you know they are past Haneda Airport and too far west to land at Narita... a mid-city landing is inevitable.
What's distinguishes this series from other Ono titles is the detail in his faces. With his trademark thick lines expressions (which are sometimes pretty extreme) look that much more impressive. With the emotional peaks and valleys of this series those expressions really vital to progression of the plot. You might not see the entire face of the terrorist but Ono does show their evil smiles as they jump from the airliner. Creepy!
Gutsoon! contiunes to not translate SFX. It really is disappointing in this series with all of the action. With stealth work, gun violence and an out of control jet, experiencing the sounds can be vital to the enjoyment overall.
Gutsoon!'s translation is good but not as good as some of their other titles. Honorifics are not used at all but they do keep names in Japanese order (family name first with given name last). I did not notice any grammatical or spelling errors and the retouch work here is top-notch.
Contents (Watch out spoilers ahead):
Imagine your taking a short plane ride from LAX to SFO. The plane is packed, the company is stale, and the peanuts are a little bit of both. To some people this could be an everyday thing; just part of the business. Nothing really changes on these trips. The seat location might be different and there might be delays every now and then, but nothing changes the malaise that is a commuter flight.
JEL flight 807 started off as a commuter flight from Tokyo's Haneda International but instead of heading south this jet ended up landing in front of the Diet Building. The destination was switched a few times - once by the terrorists that took command of the cockpit and turned the jet back towards downtown Tokyo and then again by a the courageous passengers onboard that refused to die like sheep.
Comedian Sano Yohei might not be a real action hero. He might make fun of them in his routines. Impersonating their cool attitude and testosterone filled actions but this guy is really in over his head. As he takes the controls of this runaway plane he cannot control his emotions. Wetting himself and joking about it are the only thing keeping him from panicking like some of the passengers. The collective will of everyone on this flight makes his decision very easy. He has to do anything to survive. They all have things, people, and the right to live and they will not lose those reasons because a few decided they would not. Whether they cause some damage on their landing they will not let those terrorist have their way without a fight.
Fight they had to. The US government could not let another tragedy like this happen; especially in Japan (the economic loss would be devastating.) Shooting them down was their first option. The Japanese government had their hands tied. Under peace treaty with the States, Japan has given airspace control in such emergencies to America so there really was nothing to do but wait for the final-results. A sheep would wait, but a mouflon will not and passenger Nishida Masayoshi would fight back at even the US to keep living. Even with a little more time on their hands there still was that struggle to keep that plane up and eventually find a relatively safe place to land. The fight will not end there either; actually Sano and Nishida (who happens to be the former head of the Japanese Self-Defense Force).
Using action and political themes Revenge of Mouflon is a seinen title full of tension, angst and a nice amount of comedy. At the same time, Sano Yohei, a professional comedian, as the protagonist from the very start he is able to cut the tension with his mannerisms and his personality. Together these aspect make for a very fast read full of thrills and twists. Those living in America may see another angle that is often mentioned by this series' characters. The association with the terrorist events in 2001 is easy to relate to and seeing these characters fight their way as things are all against them is stressful as it is entertaining.
For those looking for a seinen title with lots of action and an equal amount of suspense Revenge of Mouflon is it. A shocking start, a quickly moving plot, some interesting themes and solid art made for a fast paced read that was tough to put down. Sano Yohei as an unlikely hero really carries this series with his humor and his contagious spirit.
For those who must avoid seinen manga like it is the plague, pass. While there is no fan-service, yet, this series is full of adult themes: politics, terrorism, and graphic violence. But if you are mature enough to read manga with such themes this manga should not be ignored.
Revenge of Mouflon was the one of two Comic Bunch titles in Raijin's lineup that kept me waiting impatiently for a new issue (first weekly, then monthly, and now sadly who knows how long). The fine mix of comedy and thriller was something that I have long wished for in my manga in general. While you may find titles like this in a Business Jump (Shueisha) or Afternoon (Kodansha) you might not be able to share with a broad audience because of the sex, nudity or uneven writing. Revenge can be for everyone that wants politics and suspense but could pass on the other adult themes that could distract from the original story.
Right now I am completely torn. This is a title that should be shared by most manga lovers but with the uncertaity of Gutsoon! properties I am not sure if people should go out and buy an incomplete title. If you are willing to take the risk or are able to enjoy this title raw you will enjoy it. If not... then I suggest being a Mouflon and let Gutsoon! know you want them to put up a fight!
Highly Recommneded (if Gutsoon would come back and finish this title)