Wild Ones Vol. #01 - Mania.com



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Mania Grade: B

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Info:

  • Art Rating: A
  • Packaging Rating: B
  • Text/Translatin Rating: B+
  • Age Rating: 13 & Up
  • Released By: Viz Media
  • MSRP: 8.99
  • Pages: 200
  • ISBN: 978421515855
  • Size: B6
  • Orientation: Right to Left
  • Series: Wild Ones

Wild Ones Vol. #01

By Danielle Van Gorder     February 28, 2008
Release Date: December 01, 2007


Wild Ones Vol.#01
© Viz Media


Creative Talent
Writer/Artist:Kiyo Fujiwara
Translated by:Mai Ihara
Adapted by:Mai Ihara

What They Say
Sachie Wakamura just lost her mother and her estranged grandfather has shown up to take care of her. The only problem is that grandpa is the head of a yakuza gang! Too scared to join her new family, Sachie tries to continue living her normal life. She can't run far though, since one of the most popular guys in school is part of her grandfather's gang and her new protector.

No one at school knows about Rakuto's hidden life, and soon Sachie finds herself falling for her bodyguard. But she's the granddaughter of Rakuto's boss, and he can never show his feelings for her. Can Sachie find a way to fit into her new family and grab her chance at love?

The Review
Poor Sachie has the most interesting new family...

Packaging:

Viz's Shojo Beat books all have the same general packaging, and this is no exception, with the cover using the standard template, Viz's usual decent-but-not-great paper quality, and printing with sharp lines but occasionally faded blacks.

Art:

Fujiwara's art is standard shoujo, with big eyes and long, flowing hair. Or is it? At the same time, her yakuza gangsters look rough and tough, but blend in perfectly with the prettier artwork. It's a neat balance that she manages to maintain. One of the real highlights of her art is how well she manages to capture a feeling of motion in some of the panels, especially one where Rakuto sweeps Sachie off her feet. Her panel layouts manage to create a wonderful flow as well.

Text/SFX:

All sound effects are translated by replacing the original with a translation in a similar font. The translation flows smoothly with few obvious rough spots

Contents (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers):

Sachie's normal life is turned upside down when her mother dies, and she ends up moving in with the grandfather she never knew she had - who just happens to be the boss of a yakuza gang. All of a sudden she has a whole gang of protectors, of the rather rough and ready sort. The only normal one of the bunch is Rakuto, a handsome boy her own age - who ends up being anything but normal himself! He's appointed to be Sachie's new bodyguard, something she never thought she'd need, and he takes his duties seriously.

He's also the class president in her new school, and insanely popular. But the Rakuto that Sachie's classmates see and the real Rakuto that she knows are two wildly different people, and Sachie has some problems reconciling the two. The fact that Rakuto seems to have multiple personalities doesn't help, I'm sure. As in all stories of this sort, there are comedic misunderstandings, and hijinks ensue.

Comments
Sachie starts out strong but seems to get weaker and more dependent in some regards as the story progresses, while Rakuto is a bit of an enigma as a character, and I never quite found myself convinced that there was an actual romance developing between the two. The real stars of the story for me were the bizzaro yakuza henchmen and their eager if misguided attempts to make an ordinary teenage girl happy. They're just adorable. Especially in the flashbacks with Sachie's mother, this reminds me quite a bit of Fruits Basket with goofy gangsters instead of people who transform into animals.

While the story isn't anything to write home about, the romance at times leaves something to be desired, and the characterization is loose at best, the dark yakuza humor here is enough to make me want to read the next volume. It isn't new and it isn't original, but it is fun.

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