XXXholicVol. #16 - Mania.com



Manga Review

Mania Grade: B

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Info:

  • Art Rating: A-
  • Packaging Rating: B+
  • Text/Translation Rating: A-
  • Age Rating: 13 and Up
  • Released By: Del Rey
  • MSRP: 10.99
  • Pages: 208
  • ISBN: 9780345524126
  • Size: B6
  • Orientation: Right to Left
  • Series: XXXHolic

XXXholicVol. #16

XXXholicVol. #16 Manga Review

By Matthew Alexander     November 24, 2010
Release Date: October 26, 2010


XXXholicVol. #16
© Del Rey

Watanuki may never see Yuko again. He must decide to accept her fate and go on with his life, or enter the world of the supernatural for good, never to return.

Creative Staff
Writer/Artist: CLAMP
Translator: William Flanagan
Adaptation: William Flanagan

What They Say
The witch Yuko is gone, vanished and forgotten by the world with the exception of a small handful of people. But Kimihiro is determined to keep the wish-granting shop going, even if the shop's arcane rules nearly kill him for the crime of setting a wrong price. Now begins a new chapter: xxxHOLiC Ro!  

The Review
Yuko remains missing. Watanuki wanders around in a daze. Domeki is stalwart as always. And this series has become a real downer.
 
Watanuki has to decide what he’s going to do with his life, because it doesn’t look like Yuko will return. Things do look up a little, even if it is just a little. While Yuko’s former clients don’t remember her, those closest to Watanuki still do. That makes life a little easier for Watanuki, and things get better when Maru, Moro, and Mokona return to the Shop. Maru and Moro are shattered knowing their Mistress used the last of her energy to return them to Watanuki. I’m actually impressed with how well Watanuki takes that, and comforts the girls.
 
None of this looks very good, however it does help Watanuki make up his mind. He promised Yuko he would fulfill her wish someday, so he decides to take over the Shop until she returns. This has huge ramifications for the rest of his life. He can never leave the shop, and he won’t age. He can still die, but not very easily. He will have to watch his friends age and eventually die, all the while he waits, not knowing if Yuko will ever return.
 
After Watanuki makes his decision, this volume jumps four years into the future. Domeki remains by Watanuki’s side, residing in the shop with him, Moro and Maru, and Mokona. Domeki is a college student now, majoring in folklore. During this time Watanuki has become a somber man, doing his best to work Yuko’s shop. Was Yuko training Watanuki to take her place from the very beginning? Will Yuko return before Domeki dies of old age? Will she ever return for that matter?
 
In Summary:
Quite honestly, this is the only volume from this series that I have ever given less than an A-. The last few volumes of this series have seen the humor between Watanuki and those around him evaporate like Yuko’s pipe smoke. Add to that Yuko’s disappearance and this series has become an ultra serious downer. I’m not sure where this series will go from here, but I’ll still be along for the ride. However, I am annoyed with the ‘Tsubasa’ series mirroring ‘xxxHolic’. Until recently, I thought ‘xxxHolic’ read just fine without following ‘Tsubasa’, but that isn’t the case anymore. Something major happened over in the ‘Tsubasa’ series between ‘xxxHolic’ 15 and 16.  I don’t know what it was, other than Yuko sent Moro and Maru back to the Shop from whatever dimension they were in. So for the first time, I’m actually fairly annoyed with these series mirroring each other.
 

 


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