Slam Dunk Vol. #10 - Mania.com



Manga Review

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Info:

  • Art Rating: A+
  • Packaging Rating: A-
  • Text/Translation Rating: A+
  • Age Rating: 13 and Up
  • Released By: Viz Media
  • MSRP: 9.99
  • Pages: 196
  • ISBN: 978-1421528656
  • Size: B6
  • Orientation: Right to Left

Slam Dunk Vol. #10

Slam Dunk Vol. #10 Manga Review

By Ben Leary     October 26, 2010
Release Date: June 01, 2010


Slam Dunk Vol. #10
© Viz Media

Shohoku fights for a place in the final four.

Creative Staff
Writer/Artist: Takehiko Inoue
Translation: Joe Yamazaki
Adaptation: Kelly Sue DeConnick

What They Say
Shohoku advances to the final four in their prefecture, but the team they will face next, Shoyo, boasts one of the tallest squads around. Hoping to capitalize on his uncanny rebounding skills, Coach Anzai places Sakuragi in the starting five, but the Shohoku boys struggle against their opponents' marked height advantage. Miyagi's speed and Rukawa's finesse help their team chip away at Shoyo's lead, but with Akagi being outplayed at center, a Shohoku victory is looking less likely by the minute.

The Review

The Shohoku basketball team established themselves as a force to be reckoned with in the early rounds of tournament play. They tore through the opposition like it was paper. But now they're up against the number two seed. They've found a team worthy of their ability. The only question is whether or not they can hold up under the pressure. Well, that and whether Sakuragi will foul out in the first half.

This time Shohoku finds itself against not only a very good team (that much you could tell from their ranking), but against a very tall team. That means they have their work cut out for them; it also means that Sakuragi gets rotated into the starting lineup to handle one of the big boys, despite his inexperience. This not unnaturally swells his head. The gaping abyss between his own opinion of his abilities and his actual level of skill widens even further, and it cracked me up more than ever.
 
So Slam Dunk hasn't lost its sense of humour. The game is taken perfectly seriously, of course; the overall mood of the volume is the crackling suspense that Inoue can evoke no matter what. That just makes the funny bits, when they occur, all the funnier. It gives the comic relief more tension to relieve. Inoue has already shown himself brilliant at staging basketball games. He makes this one stand out by working in a factor he hasn't yet used. This is an important game with a coveted place in the final four riding on it. And there's one huge factor that every big game has: the crowd. Inoue makes into a force nearly equal to having another player on the court - which is how it often feels during a game. First it works for one team, then for the other, gathering momentum one moment, sucking it away the next. The crowd can be friend or enemy; but it will always be fickle, and never unimportant. Inoue brings that feeling to life in a way that makes me marvel. Just who is this guy?
 
In Summary:
This volume gets us just past halftime, but I was hooked long before that. I can feel Slam Dunk flexing its muscles, getting ready to show us what it's really made of. It's got its game face on, and it can play with the best of them. I can't help but wonder: have we just been seeing the second string up to now? Has Slam Dunk been saving its best for the even bigger games ahead of it? I guess I'll find out soon enough. In the meantime I'm going to sit back and enjoy one of the most exciting reads of the year.
 
This volume's overtime segment features Allen Iverson and the art of the steal.


 


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