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Master Keaton – Omnibus Vol. 10 by Naoki Urasawa, Story by Hokusei Katsushika, Takashi Nagasaki (A J!-ENT Manga Review)

May 1, 2017 by · Leave a Comment 

masterkeaton-10

If you love mystery, action and well-written, smart stories, “Master Keaton” is highly recommended!

© 1989 Naoki Urasawa/Studio Nuts, Hokusei Katsushika, Takashi Nagasaki. All Rights Reserved.

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MANGA TITLE: Master Keaton – Omnibus Vol. 10

STORY AND ART BY: Naoki Urasawa, Story by Hokusei Katsushika, Takashi Nagasaki

FIRST PUBLISHED IN JAPAN: Shogakukan

PUBLISHED IN USA BY: VIZ SIGNATURE/Viz Media, LLC

RATED: OT for Older Teen

RELEASE DATE: March 21, 2017


Taichi Hiraga Keaton is a busy insurance investigator who yearns to make a living as an archaeologist. Just how long does he have to continue working as an investigator? Keaton is uncertain of his future, but he does know that a string of difficult cases awaits him!


A bar keeper’s son is killed.  Who is responsible?

A woman gets close to Keaton and wants him to pretend that he is her husband.  But why?

Someone is murdering people in a smuggling ring.  But what relationship do they have with the Nazis?

A young girl’s mother is getting married, but the mother thinks her daughter Alice is defective and not a proper young lady.  She hires Keaton to teach tutor her, but can Keaton get through to Alice?

What happens when Oliver Woodworth returns, wanting to become Keaton’s assistant?

And something sinister is going on in the mysterious Landberry Village in Wales.  Can Keaton and Detective Neville find out what is going on in the village?

All this and more in “Master Keaton – Omnibus vol. 10”.

What is “Master Keaton” all about?

In 1998, “Master Keaton” was a manga series serialized in “Big Comic Original”.

Created by Hokusei Katshika and Naoki Urasawa, the series was released through 1994 and ran for 144 chapters. In Japan, a total of 18 tankobon volumes were released and in 1998-1999, a 24-episode animate adaptation was aired on Nippon Television plus an additional 15 OVA episodes were created and were once released in the United States.

In 2012, Urasawa would create the sequel to the series titled “Master Keaton Remaster” with writer Takashi Nagasaki and the series was serialized in “Big Comic Original” and was set 20 years after the original series ended.

And now, Viz Media is releasing an omnibus of the manga series which includes 12 chapters and part of the Viz Signature imprint.

The story of “Master Keaton” revolves around a man named Taichi Hiraga-Keaton, the son of Japanese Zoologist Taihei Hiraga and Englishwoman Patricia Keaton. Because his parents separated when he was young, Taichi was raised in England by his mother.

He studied archaeology at Oxford University under Professor Yuri Scott. While married, like his father, he also divorced and has a daughter named Yuriko who was raised by her mother but recently has been visiting her father now that she is a high school student.

While Master Keaton teaches archaeology at Kotozawa University and is often taking jobs as an insurance investigator with Lloyd’s of London that require his expertise. Sometimes the job can be very dangerous. But the other side of Keaton is that he was also a member of the British Army, and its SAS (Special Air Service) division…special forces. Keaton was a survival instructor and saw combat in the Falklands War and one of the team members who responded to the Iranian Embassy incident.

He skills of survival but also combat is remarkable but his knowledge of archaeology and antiques are also uncanny. And now, he must take on various jobs around the world that puts him and his clients at risk.


“Master Keaton” is an entertaining and smartly written manga series.

On the outside, you think Keaton is just a normal man but not only is he able to outwit anyone who tries to hurt him, his survival skills are uncanny. But yet, he is a man with faults and that lies more in his life as a father (he’s so busy that he hasn’t really been there for his daughter) and his concern for his ex-wife (he no doubt loves her but also too busy to be a married man).

While I won’t go so far as calling him a James Bond-ish type of character, as he isn’t actually suave, he is a survivalist and an knowledgeable about ancient history and antiques.

Not many know of his special forces training, they just know of his knowledge of antiques, and thus he goes into areas that are a bit dangerous.

In omnibus volume 10, you get a good number of diverse stories. From Keaton helping out the bar owner who’s estranged son was murdered.  Who was responsible?

Another story revolves around Oliver Woodworth coming back and leaving his father’s wealthy business to become Keaton’s assistant.  But Keaton tries to prevent Woodworth from being his assistant due to the danger of the job.

There is also an intriguing story that involves a smuggling ring with each of its members being killed.  With a link to the Nazi’s, Keaton must find out who is murdering members of the smuggling ring.

And another fascinating chapter involves Dr. Neville going to Landbery Village in Wales to find an escaped convict.  Neville finds Keaton also on the scene but something sinister is happening around the village.

For the most part, I was very impressed with each of these stories as they were well-researched, well-written and really go into the historical details of an item, of cultures and more.

The art and the ancient history portion of various chapters are well-researched and Hokusei Katsuhika did a wonderful job, while the artwork by Urasawa is wonderful as always.

It’s absolutely wonderful that Viz Media has released the “Master Keaton” omnibus in North America. It’s one of the most intriguing, smartly written manga series available in the United States. And the good thing is you can pick up any volume and not really miss out on continuity because each chapter is a different case for series protagonist, Keaton.

If you love mystery, action and well-written, smart stories, “Master Keaton” is highly recommended!

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Mobile Suit Gundam Thunderbolt vol. 3 – Story and Art by Yasuo Ohtagaki (a J!-ENT Manga Review)

April 23, 2017 by · Leave a Comment 

The story has been action-driven, detail of the artwork has been excellent and for mecha fans, “Mobile Suit Gundam Thunderbolt” vol. 3 gives readers a gritty, emotional and darker side of the war.

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© 2012 by Yasuo Ohtagaki. All Rights Reserved.


MANGA TITLE: Mobile Suit Gundam Thunderbolt Vol. 3

STORY AND ART BY: Yasuo Ohtagaki

FIRST PUBLISHED IN JAPAN: Shogakukan

PUBLISHED IN USA BY: VIZ Signature

RATED: T for Older Teen

RELEASE DATE: May 16, 2017


In the Universal Century year 0079, humanity is divided between Earth and huge space colonies known as Sides. The colony known as Side 3 proclaims independence as the Principality of Zeon, and declares war on the Earth Federation. As the conflict nears the one-year mark, the Earth Federation and the forces of Zeon are locked in a fierce battle for the Thunderbolt Sector, an area of space scarred by the wreckage of destroyed space colonies.

The Federation attack on the Zeon fleet in the Thunderbolt sector is a bloody fiasco as Io Fleming leads a squadron of inexperienced young pilots into the teeth of the Zeon defenses. Desperate, the Federation throws even the maintenance crews into the fray. Casualties mount as the two fleets clash, and Fleming and his Zeon rival, Daryl Lorenz, engage deep in the ruins of one of the space colonies. Shattered and driven by memories of the past and all they’ve lost, their duel resonates with the fierce emotions of both sides in this deadly conflict.


The Principality of Zeon thanks to their Zeon Sniper Daryl Lorenz and his new Psycho Zaku has taken the Federation by surprise and nearly wiped out the entire fleet.  And with the surviving members of the Federation, they are not aware that Zeon Fleet Commander Kleiber is on their way for support.

Meanwhile, Io Fleming with his Gundam and Zeon Sniper Daryl Lorenz clash once again, but this time, who wins this battle?

What is “Mobile Suit Gundam Thunderbolt” about?

Back in 2012, mangaka Yasuo Ohtagaki wrote and illustrated the manga “Mobile Suit Gundam Thunderbolt”.

With eight volumes published, the series would receive a 4-episode ONA anime adaptation and a second season is slated for adaptation.

The manga is set during the One Year War (U.C. 0079) and the Earth Federation’s Brotherhood and the Principality of Zeon’s Living Dead Division are in battle in the Thunderbolt Section, a zone that is littered with debris from the destruction of space colonies and because the area has numerous electrical discharging.

Fighting for the Earth Federation is Ace pilot, Io Fleming and for the Principality of Zeon, Zeon’s best sniper, Daryl Lorenz is focused on killing Fleming.

As Io won the first meeting between the two, this time around, both the Federation and Zeon plan to escalate the battle as the Federation plans to send the Gundam in one more time to finish the job, but leading the Gundam are young recruits. Meanwhile, Zeon follows Daryl Lorenz piloting the new Psycho Zaku.

And with a sneak attack, they are able to decimate the Federation.  With only a few survivors of the Federation, what happens when appen’s when Earth Federation’s Moore Brotherhood enters a Zeon ship?

Also, the Federation’s Io Fleming and his Gundam takes on Zeon’s Daryl Lorenz and his new Psycho Zaku.

What will be the outcome of this major battle in the Thunderbolt Sector?


When it comes to the Universal Century Gundam stories, they are my favorite. And while many of us have been entertained by stories involving Amuro Ray, there have been a variety of stories that have taken place in the Universal Century, some more deeper than the others and others just focusing on the action.

“Mobile Suit Gundam Thunderbolt” may seem like the latter because of the action focusing on Earth Federation vs. the Principality of Zeon but once the manga goes into character development, the storyline focuses on how people are growing tired of the war. People sick of seeing deaths of friends and loved ones.

Io Fleming is a man born from a wealthy family and he and his friends are thrusted into war. Fleming is secretly dating Captain Claudia Peer, a captain who is sick and tired of war and that the Earth Federation keeps sending teenage pilots as reinforcements and always depressed and tense when Fleming, the Beehive’s best pilot goes to fight against the Principality of Zeon. Along with Fleming and another childhood friend, engineer Cornelius Kaka, all three were born in privilege and are now assigned to the Beehive.

Fleming is an excellent pilot and surprises the Principality of Zeon when he shows up and takes many of them out with his Gundam and always playing his jazz music through a pilot radio station.

Meanwhile, on the opposite end are the Living Dead Division of the Principality of Zeon. A group that is put together of people who have been significantly injured or maimed and are still fighting with prosthetics.

Their best fighter, Zeon Chief Petty Officer Daryl Lorenz, is an excellent sniper and wants revenge against Fleming for killing his teammates. He has lost his legs in battle and carries a retro-style radio that he listens to in battle.

We see the other side as those who feel they are wronged and want revenge against the Earth Federation for the death of their loved ones.

Zeon scientist Karla Mitchum is responsible for giving the soldiers prosthetics but when her loved one is killed, she wants Daryl to rid of the Earth Federation, especially the man responsible, Io Fleming.

But we see how the grass is definitely not greener on the other side and how difficult life was for children growing up in the Principality of Zeon and in order to make sure their families were taken care of, they had to join the military at a young age.

So, the third volume of “Mobile Suit Gundam Thunderbolt” gives us a look as both sides and both were decimated by each other.    People injured and not sure if they will live, but with this latest battle, Zeon has the edge as they managed to do a sneak attack to decimate the Federation.

As only a few of Earth Federation’s Moore Brotherhood around to infiltrate the Zeon ship, what will they find?

Meanwhile, another clash between the elite Io Fleming and his Gundam and Daryl Lorenz and his Psycho Zaku.  But who will have the edge in this latest battle?

The character designs, artwork and storyline by Yasuo Ohtagaki are wonderful and I really like how the emotion of the characters are depicted. The story has been action-driven, detail of the artwork has been excellent and for mecha fans, “Mobile Suit Gundam Thunderbolt” vol. 3 gives readers a gritty, emotional and darker side of the war.

After this volume, nothing will ever be the same between the Federation and the Zeon in the Thunderbolt sector.

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Dragon Ball Super Vol. 1 – Story by Akira Toriyama, Art by Toyotarou (a J!-ENT Manga Review)

April 23, 2017 by · Leave a Comment 

If you loved “Dragon Ball” and “Dragon Ball Z”, I can’t highly recommend enough of how awesome “Dragon Ball Super” truly is.  I was just as skeptical, being a hardcore DBZ fan but I was quite pleased with the overall manga and can’t wait until vol. 2!

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Image courtesy of © 2016 Bird Studios, Toyotarou. All Rights Reserved.


MANGA TITLE: Dragon Ball Super vol. 1

Story by Akira Toriyama, Art by Toyotarou

FIRST PUBLISHED IN JAPAN: SHUEISHA, Inc.

PUBLISHED IN USA BY: VIZ Media, LLC

RATED: T for Teen

RELEASE DATE: May 2, 2017


Having defeated Boo, Goku is starting to get bored with his life on Earth. His wife, Chi-chi, wants him to get a job, but all he wants to do is train and fight stronger enemies. However, he might soon regret his wish for greater challenges, as one is on its way right for him!

Elsewhere in the universe, the God of Destruction, Beerus, and his attendant Whis are traveling from planet to planet in search of food and entertainment. After blowing up some hapless victims, Beerus is reminded of a man from his dreams with the moniker “Super Saiyan God,” or something like that. The God of Destruction sets his sights on Earth to track the source of his visions, leading to a battle like no other.


A new “Dragon Ball” series?

It was something that fans knew was a possibility but whether or not it would be accepted, that is a different story.

As “Dragon Ball GT” was created but not considered canon, because series creator Akira Toriyama was not involved, “Dragon Ball Super” is considered canon as the anime series credits Akira Toriyama for the original story and character design concepts.

As the “Battle of the Gods” and “Resurrection ‘F'” films are considered canon and take place before “Dragon Ball Super”, one may want to watch those two films before jumping onto this manga series, but fortunately, it is not needed as the first volume of the manga series gets readers caught up of what has transpired with the characters after Son Goku had defeated Majin Boo.

Written by Akira Toriyama and featuring artwork by Toyotarou (who did the manga adaptation of “Resurrection ‘F'”, an artists that Toriyama highly approves of, we begin a new chapter in the “Dragon Ball” manga series with the first volume of “Dragon Ball Super”.

As peace has taken place after Son Goku had defeated Majin Boo, for the next four years, Son Goku has become a radish farmer to support his family.

As Beerus, the God of Destruction and his assistant Whis destroy a planet in Universe 7, he had a dream of taking on a Super Saiyan God.  And is in search of him.

Meanwhile, Beerus’ twin brother Champa, God of Destruction of Universe 6 has secretly visited Universe 7 along with his assistant Vados to find the final Super Dragon Ball.

As Beerus pays a visit to the planet of the Lord of the Northern Worlds where Kaio-ken resides, Goku is training.  And when Beerus allows Goku to try and defeat him, Goku is beaten quickly.

This leads Beerus to interrupt Bulma’s birthday part on Earth (as featured in the “Battle of the Gods” film).

Needless to say, with the Dragon Balls and a ritual performed, Son Goku is transformed into a Super Saiyan God and challenges Beerus and it ends in a stalemate.  As Vegeta also acquires significant power, the two are trained by Whis.  And all was going well until Champa and Vados shows up to visit Beerus and Whis.

The two have a disagreement of which universe has better food and when Beerus introduces Champa to Cup Ramen, Champa proposes a challenge.  A fighting tournament featuring Universe 6’s best fighters vs.  Beerus’ choice of five of Universe 7’s best fighters.  Whoever wins gets access to the Super Dragon Balls and Champa’s goal is to switch Earth’s and have Beerus’ Earth switch places with the barren/devastated by war Earth of Universe 6.

All agree to have this tournament take place and now Goku, Vegeta, Piccolo, Boo and a fighter of Beerus’ choosing will need to take on Champa’s top five fighters.

Let the tournament begin!


I was very skeptical when “Dragon Ball Super” was announced.  Having enjoyed “Dragon Ball” and “Dragon Ball Z”, “Dragon Ball GT” was no doubt a series cashing in on the “Dragon Ball” characters and a storyline that was more or less geared to attract younger viewers (as it focused on Son Goku turned into a child, his granddaughter Pan and Vegeta and Bulma’s son Trunks).

I was not excited about the two newer films because I felt that Akira Toriyama ended “Dragon Ball” and that should ahve been it.  Afterall, the first two “Dragon Ball” series are a big part of younger years and I didn’t want to see a new terrible series marring the original Toriyama work.

And with over 80-episodes of “Dragon Ball Super” having aired in Japan and not having seen one episodes, I figured I would read this manga and see if if I would enjoy it.

And to my surprise, this series manages to capture all the fun, laughter and action that the original had and more.  Suffice to say, I loved reading this first volume!

Not only do we get new characters but you get to see characters who have been featured in other Akira Toriyama series such as “JACO:  The Galactic Patrolman” make an appearance and also, we see all characters reunited for the next biggest test for the Son Goku and friends.

And while the first half of the manga series focuses on character introductions and the power of Beerus and Whis, we also learn that there are other powerful Gods of Destruction of other universes and for Son Goku, getting stronger and beating his opponents has always been a big part of the storyline.

And now, Son Goku and friends will need to take on the top warriors of Universe 6.  In some ways, it’s kind of an Akira Toriyama nod to DC Comics with Superman and the heroes of Earth-1 and Earth-2 and the differences of similar universes but different outcomes for various planets in the universe.

Needless to say, this first volume made me crave for more.  The humor and action are fantastic and is consistent with previous “Dragon Ball” series but most importantly, it’s entertaining and so much fun!

And I can see why Akira Toriyama has so much faith in Toyotarou, with an interview featured at the end of the chapters, you can tell that Akira working with Toyotarou is somewhat of a passing of the torch.  Toyotarou’s similarity to Akira Toriyama’s work is fantastic and this collaboration between the two shows their admiration as their work is fantastic.

Overall, if you loved “Dragon Ball” and “Dragon Ball Z”, I can’t highly recommend enough of how awesome “Dragon Ball Super” truly is.  I was just as skeptical, being a hardcore DBZ fan but I was quite pleased with the overall manga and can’t wait until vol. 2!

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Boruto – Naruto Next Generations – vol. 1 – Story by Ukyo Kodachi and Art by Mikio Ikemoto (a J!-ENT Manga Review)

April 6, 2017 by · Leave a Comment 

If you enjoyed “Naruto”, you’ll find “Boruto – Naruto Next Generations -” to be entertaining and a lot of fun to read! I look forward to the second volume of “Boruto – Naruto Next Generations -“.

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Image courtesy of © 2016 Masashi Kishimoto. All Rights Reserved.


MANGA TITLE: Boruto – Naruto Next Generations – vol. 1

Creator/Supervisor: Masashi Kishimoto

Story by Ukyo Kodachi and Art by Mikio Ikemoto

FIRST PUBLISHED IN JAPAN: SHUEISHA, Inc.

PUBLISHED IN USA BY: VIZ Media, LLC/Shueisha Inc., Tokyo

RATED: T for Teen

RELEASE DATE: April 4, 2017


The ninja adventures continue with Naruto’s son, Boruto!

Naruto was a young shinobi with an incorrigible knack for mischief. He achieved his dream to become the greatest ninja in his village, and now his face sits atop the Hokage monument. But this is not his story… A new generation of ninja are ready to take the stage, led by Naruto’s own son, Boruto!

Years have passed since Naruto and Sasuke teamed up to defeat Kaguya, the progenitor of chakra and the greatest threat the ninja world has ever faced. Times are now peaceful and the new generation of shinobi has not experienced the same hardships as its parents. Perhaps that is why Boruto would rather play video games than train. However, one passion does burn deep in this ninja boy’s heart, and that is the desire to defeat his father!


The popular manga series “Naruto” has been going strong since its debut in Shueisha back in 1999 via “Weekly Shonen Jump” magazine.

The manga by Masashi Kishimoto is about a young ninja named Naruto Uzamaki, a ninja of the Konoha leaf village who grew up facing prejudiced within his fellow ninjas because the evil nine-tailed fox was sealed inside him. But throughout the series, we have seen how Naruto is a kind-hearted boy who has worked hard in protecting his friends and staying true to his word with the goal of someday becoming the next Hokage of the village.

In 2014, Kishimoto wrapped up the “Naruto” manga and in the final chapter (featured in volume 72), Naruto would eventually become the Hokage of the Leaf Village and he and his wife Hinata would have two children, Boruto and Himawari.

Meanwhile, Sasuke and Sakura would have a daughter named Sarada, Shikamaru Nara and Temari would have a son named Shikadai, Sai and Ino would have a son named Inojin and Choji Akimichi and Karui would have a daughter named Chocho.

Everyone has grown up and Naruto is busy as the new Hokage at the village, this causes resentment from Naruto’s son Boruto who feels that his father was never there for him or the family.

This leads us to the new manga series “Boruto – Naruto Next Generations” which is created and supervised by Masashi Kishimoto but is now written by Ukyo Kodachi and artwork is by Mikio Ikemoto.

The manga begins with Boruto telling his story and him and his team partners, Sarada and Mitsuki being trained by Master Konohamaru.  A lot has changed in terms of ninja skills and technology.

Now, a jutsu can be contained in a mini-seal and put into a bracelet which gives anyone, ninja or not, the power to use a jutsu.  No chakra is even needed to use the new technology.

With the next Chunin exams coming up, Sarada and Mitsuki want to take the exam but Boruto, he has no desire.  He doesn’t want to be like his father and that means not wanting to be Hokage.  But for Sarada, she wants to be Hokage and tries to get Boruto to take part in the Chunin exam to let his father know he could do it.

Meanwhile, Sasuke Uchiha returns to the village and Boruto, not wanting to be anything like his father, goes to Sasuke to take him in as a pupil.  But Sasuke will only agree if Boruto can learn the Sharingan jutsu.

We also get to learn about Mitsuki and find out who his parent(s) may be.


Reading “Boruto – Naruto Next Generations – vol. 1”, I can’t help but be entertained by the fact that the series focuses on the children of the characters that many of us grew up reading/watching for 15 years.

“Naruto” having lasted so long was a big part of the lives of manga/anime fans of the series that we watched “Naruto” grow from a child, to a teenager and a young adult.  Seeing how his heart and his passion would inspire so many but also seeing him determined to defeat those who threatened the village or his friends.

With Naruto, he is a student that felt he had to prove himself through hardwork and determination.

So, it’s fascinating to see how Boruto is much different than his father.  Naruto, who had always said he would become Hokage is now the new Hokage of the Leaf Village but this new role means being busy with work and unfortunately, that means no time spent with the family.

Hinata is literally taking care of both children and you can see how Boruto is upset at his father for neglecting them, but he harbors a bit of anger for his father not being there for him.

What’s even more interesting is that Boruto is not too aware of his father’s past and how he grew up, so he is not aware of the challenges or difficulties his father grew up with.

And because of his feelings towards his father, he asks his dad’s rival, Sasuke Uchiha to become his master.

The first volume features the first test in the Chunin exams but also goes into who the parent of Mitsuki is and really interesting background about him as well.

And I’ll leave it that.

This is a new beginning, a new chapter and not sure if this will last for another 15 years but this is a tremendous task and also honor that “Naruto” creator Masashi Kishimoto had bestowed upon writer Ukyo Kodachi and artist Mikio Ikemoto.

The story and artwork is well-done and for the most part, I just enjoy reading this latest volume because this storyline is literally a passing of the torch to a new generation of characters in the Leaf Village.

And having read and enjoyed the “Naruto” manga (I enjoyed the anime series but the plethora of filler episodes made things drag out way too long for me), it’s great to read a story focused on the 7th Hokage’s son.

If you enjoyed “Naruto”, you’ll find “Boruto – Naruto Next Generations -” to be entertaining and a lot of fun to read!

I look forward to the second volume of “Boruto – Naruto Next Generations -“.

 

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Yu-Gi-Oh! Arc-V – Vol. 1 by Shin Yoshida and Naohito Miyoshi (a J!-ENT Manga Review)

March 12, 2017 by · Leave a Comment 

“Yu-Gi-Oh! Arc-V” is a manga series with card battles that young fans and even older fans may enjoy. Personally, I enjoy the complexity of the battles and the strategy combined with a storyline featuring action and humor. And to have a protagonist who wants to be more of an entertainer (that can battle) is also fascinating. If you are a fan of card gaming and also a “Yu-Gi-Oh!” fan, “Yu-Gi-Oh! Arc-V” is recommended!

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Image courtesy of © 2014 Kazuki Takahashi, Shin Yoshida, Naohito Miyoshi. All Rights Reserved.


MANGA TITLE: Yu-Gi-Oh! Arc-V – Vol. 1

STORY AND ART BY: Shin Yoshida and Naohito Miyoshi

FIRST PUBLISHED IN JAPAN: SHUEISHA, Inc.

PUBLISHED IN USA BY: VIZ Media, LLC/Shonen Jump Manga

RATED: T for Teen

RELEASE DATE: April 4, 2017


Action Duels have become a global sensation, but what is the dark secret behind them that threatens to destroy the world? 

Yuzu Hiiragi and her father run a Dueling school that’s seen better days. If only they had a star teacher to bring in new students! When a rogue Duelist known as Phantom appears in the city, Yuzu may have found a savior, but Phantom will have to deal with the Leo Corporation’s special forces before he can get into any community service!


In 1996, Kazuki Takahashi would create a manga series about card games known as “Yu-Gi-Oh!”. Wanting to create a battle manga that was unique and not about fighting and a fan of tabletop role-playing games, Takahashi did not imagine how popular the series would be among fans worldwide.

With the original manga serialized in Sept. 1996 through 2004, the games have been popular among anime, manga and of course, the card gaming fans in America and also around the world. The series would spawn off various series (featuring manga adaptations by other artists/writers) such as “Yu-Gi-Oh! GX” (2005-2011), “Yu-Gi-Oh! 5D’s” (2008-2011) and “Yu-Gi-Oh! Zexal” (2011-2012).

With the completion of “Yu-Gi-Oh! Zexal”, the fifth “Yu-Gi-Oh!” franchise titled “Yu-Gi-Oh! Arc-V” was unveiled in 2014 and a manga adaptation serialized in Shueisha’s “V-Jump” magazine in August 2015.

And now “Yu-Gi-Oh! Arc-V” is now released in America courtesy of Viz Media.

What is “Yu-Gi-Oh! Arc-V”?

“Yu-Gi-Oh! Arc-V” continues the card battling theme that the original series was most popular for.

The series is set in the near future in a place called Maiami City and starts off at the Syo Zo Duel School where Principal Syu Zo Hiragi and his daughter Yuzu are worried that they will be unable to pay rent because they have no students.

Meanwhile, three helicopters from the Leo Corpration are in pursuit of  Yuya “The Phantom” Sasaki and when they corner him, Shingo Sawatari confronts the hooded individual and the young man tells them he isn’t Yuya Sasaki but his name is Yuto, but he will battle them.

As Yuzu watches from another building, she comes up with an idea, what if she can get Yuto to be a teacher at the school, then the school can make money.

As the battle between Yuya and Shingo begins, Shingo thinks he will win the battle but to everyone’s surprise, Yuto unleashes a pendulum summon and then reveals himself to be the best entertainment duelist in the world, Yuya Sasaki.

And when Yuya thinks he has a fan and goes to sign a paper, thinking he’s signing an autograph for Yuzu, he actually is signing a contract to teach at the Syu Zo Duel School.

Meanwhile, Reiji Akaba of the Leo Corporation will do anything to find and capture Yuya Sasaki.  But what is his motivation for doing so?


The concept of “Yu-Gi-Oh! Arc-V” is one that will appeal not only to fans of the original series and love card battling.  Where previous stories allowed for building certain card characters and turning them into something more powerful, the concept still remains but you now have this pendulum factor that really make a huge difference in a battle, along with four random action cards scattered around the action field.

It’s a much different concept than the other previous series, but the storyline has mystery and humor, which fans of the series will surely enjoy.

It’s important to note that with each volume purchased of “Yu-Gi-Oh! Arc-V”, an exclusive card is featured. In this case, an Odd-Eyes Phantom Dragon.

Overall, “Yu-Gi-Oh! Arc-V” is a manga series with card battles that young fans and even older fans may enjoy. Personally, I enjoy the complexity of the battles and the strategy combined with a storyline featuring action and humor.  And to have a protagonist who wants to be more of an entertainer (that can battle) is also fascinating.

If you are a fan of card gaming and also a “Yu-Gi-Oh!” fan, “Yu-Gi-Oh! Arc-V” is recommended!

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The Complete Chi’s Sweet Home – Part 4 by Konami Kanata (a J!-ENT Manga Review)

March 11, 2017 by · Leave a Comment 

If you are passionate about neko (cats) or a person who watched “Chi’s Sweet Home” and want to read the manga, definitely give Vertical Inc.’s “The Complete Chi’s Sweet Home” a try.  And if you have purchased the previous omnibus, the final “The Complete Chi’s Sweet Home” is definitely worth reading!

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© 2016 Konami Kanata. All Rights Reserved.


MANGA TITLE: The Complete Chi’s Sweet Home – Part 4

STORY AND ART BY: Konami Kanata

FIRST PUBLISHED IN JAPAN: Kodanasha

PUBLISHED IN USA BY: Vertical, Inc.

RATED: 8-12 years old

RELEASE DATE: December 20, 2016


After six years in North America the Chi’s Sweet Home saga has finally come to an end! Chi, Blackie, Cocchi and the rest will wrap up their adventures near Green Park in this final collection. But before Chi moves on to her new role as a 3DCG anime star, will she find her new home? Or will she decide to move away in search of new adventures?


When Chi’s human family are moving to France, Chi is reunited with her kitten family.  But which family will she choose?

The story of Chi ends with the final omnibus of Konami Kanata’s “The Complete Chi’s Sweet Home – Part 4”.

What is “The Complete Chi’s Sweet Home”?

In Japan, mangaka Konami Kanata is best known for her neko (cat) manga which goes as far back in 1982 with “Buchi Neko Jamu Jamu” which was published by Kodansha.

But her best known series is “Chi’s Sweet Home”, which was serialized in the Kodansha magazine, “Weekly Morning” since 2004.

With a two-season anime series (2008-2009) and a 3DCG television anime adaptation (2016), a total of 12 graphic novel volumes were published in Japan.  Here in the United States, Vertical Inc. has released four omnibus featuring three volumes each.

The story of “Chi’s Sweet Home” began with a young kitten named Sarah who has wandered away from her mother and siblings while going out for a walk.

Lost and scared, a young boy named Yohei and his family take in the young kitten, despite their apartment complex not allowing pets into their home.

So, the family tries to find a new home for the kitten but to no avail, they end up taking care of the young kitten.

While the kitten is housebroken, it responded to the word “Chi” (in Japanese, the word is “Shi” and the kitten was responding to the word “Shikko” which means urine/pee)  and so, the family calls the kitten by that name.

And as Chi gets used to his human family, he also manages to make friends with other animals living outside the neighborhood.

In “The Complete Chi’s Sweet Home – Part 4”, Chi meets a cat named Cocchi and when Chi takes him to his human family, Cocchi is shocked to see how Chi has been living.

As Cocchi returns back to the park, he meets two other cats that look similar to Chi and he takes Chi to meet with them.  At the park, he learns about family and that his family are cats with tails and that the family he lives with are not cats.  But Chi loves going out to the park and playing with other cats and seeing animals just like him.

Meanwhile, Yohei’s father has seen a poster that have been searching for a cat that looks exactly like chi and Yohe’s parents debate on whether to call the owner since Yohei has bonded with Chi.

As Chi and Cocchi are walking, they see their cat friends with her mother, but when the mother sees Chi, she calls out “Sarah”.  The mother goes searching for Chi and finds him with a human family that has taken him in.

Meanwhile, Yohei’s father gets a job opportunity in France and that means giving up Chi, prompting him to call the number on the poster.

What will happen to Chi?  Especially to young Yohei who has bonded with Chi?


If you are a person wh o loves cats, Konami Kanata’s manga “The Complete Chi’s Sweet Home” will no doubt appeal to you for its storyline showing you two different perspectives, one coming from a young kitten named chi discovering this new world with other animals but his love for the human family that has taken him in, especially the young Yohei.

The other perspective comes from the human family as the parents of Yohei know they are not allowed to take in pets at their apartment complex, but seeing how their young son loves the kitten, they decide to keep it.

But with this final three volumes featured in “The Complete Chi’s Sweet Home”, Yohei’s father sees a poster searching for Chi.  At first, Yohei’s parents are torn because they know their son loves Chi but with a new job offer to go to France, they decided to call the owner.

Meanwhile, as Chi has a new friend named Cocchi that introduces him to other cats at the park, Chi starts to learn about what a cat is and that there are others like him and have similar bodies.  He starts to realize the differences between him and others, including his human family.

But the more he plays in the park, Chi is not aware that he is playing with his siblings and when his real cat mother sees him, mother wants to be reunited with her lost kitten.

As Chi learns about family, which family will he prefer to live with.  His real family along with this siblings or will he want to live with Yohei and family?

A touching final volume, “The Complete Chi’s Sweet Home” ends with a positive, uplifting story that people of all ages can surely enjoy.  Along with volumes 10-12, the omnibus also comes with extras and a bonus cat comic.

If you are passionate about neko (cats) or a person who watched “Chi’s Sweet Home” and want to read the manga, definitely give Vertical Inc.’s “The Complete Chi’s Sweet Home” a try.  And if you have purchased the previous omnibus, the final “The Complete Chi’s Sweet Home” is definitely worth reading!

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Nisekoi: False Love Vol. 20 by Naoshi Komi (a J!-ENT Manga Review)

February 28, 2017 by · Leave a Comment 

How will Raku respond to Yui’s confession of love? Meanwhile, Raku gets jealous when Chitoge tells him that she likes a guy. All this and more in this entertaining 20th volume of Naoshi Komi’s “Nisekoi: False Love”.  Recommended!

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© 2011 Naoshi Komi. All Rights Reserved.


MANGA TITLE: Nisekoi: False Love Vol. 20

STORY AND ART BY: Naoshi Komi (古味直志)

FIRST PUBLISHED IN JAPAN: SHUEISHA, Inc.

PUBLISHED IN USA BY: VIZ Media, LLC/Shonen Jump Manga

RATED: T for Teen

RELEASE DATE: March 7, 2017


When Marika’s plan to watch the first sunrise of the year with Raku goes awry, they find themselves stranded on an uninhabited island! As Marika’s health begins to fail, will they find a way to see the sunrise? Plus, when Yui turns twenty, Night comes to her with a shocking pronouncement: it is time for Yui to get married!


The conclusion to Marika kidnapping Raku.  As Raku wants to know how sick Marika really is.

Meanwhile, Yui is ordered to get married, now that she has turned 20.  When she confesses her love to Raku, what will Rako do?

Also, when Raku asks if Chitoge like’s anyone and she tells him that she does (not telling Raku, it is him), Raku for some reason is starting to get jealous.  Now he wants to know who she likes.

And what happens when Raku and the ladies go to the shrine for New Year’s Day?  Will it be a repeat of last year (with all the ladies getting drunk)?

All this and more in Naoshi Komi’s hit manga series, “Nisekoi: False Love” vol. 20!

What is “Nisekoi: False Love”?

Naoshi Komi’s manga work is well-known for readers of Shonen Jump. From “Koi no Kami-sama”, “Williams” and “Double Arts”, Komi’s manga “Nisekoi” (False Love) was created as a one shot for Jump NEXT! in 2011 but then receiving the go-ahead as a weekly manga serialized in “Weekly Shonen Jump”.

“Nisekoi” revolves around high school Raku Ichijou. When Ichijou was a kid, he met a girl and he kept a lock, she kept the key and promised each other to get married if they one day find each other.

Since then, Ichijou has kept his promise and has worn the lock around his neck and has been hoping to meet her again.

But Ichijou’s life is a little complicated. While a good-natured individual, unfortunately for him, he is the son of the leader of the Shuei-gumi yakuza syndicate. He has no interested in become part of the yakuza but everyone expects him to be the next one to lead the syndicate in the future.

Meanwhile, while going to school, he sees a foreign girl jumping from a wall and landing on him. He loses the lock on his neck and is very upset of what had transpired. Next thing you know in class, that same girl becomes a new student in his class.

Chitoge Kirisaki just moved from the U.S. to Japan and since her mom is Japanese and her dad is America, she is fluent in both Japanese and English. And suffice to say, when both Ichijou and Kirisaki see each other, they start yelling at each other and she nails him with a hit after he calls her “monkey girl”. People see how tough she is but to make them get along, his teacher puts Ichijou in charge of showing her around school.

He tries his best but the two are like oil and water, they just don’t get along. For the next week of trying to assist her, the two end up arguing and getting in each other’s faces.

If anything, Ichijou focus is more on finding the lock that was lost when Kirisaki landed on him. And he wonders if Kosaki Onodera, the popular girl in school and a person who has treated him with nothing but kindness is the girl that he made the promise with. He hopes it is her.

But just when Ichijou is about to give up, Onodera pleads with him to keep his promise and Ichijou is reminded that a promise is a promise and he intends to keep it. But wants to ask Onodera if there is any chance she may be the girl he made the promise too.

What he doesn’t know is that Onodera does have a key and she has always liked Ichijou but doesn’t have the guts to tell him.

But as Ichijou wonders if Onodera is the girl he made a promise too and excited for the possibility that it might be, when he gets home, his father talks to him about something important.

The problem is that the Shuei-gumi and another rival yakuza gang are in the brink of all-out war that would damage both yakuza gangs, he and the other leader have come up with the plan. Ichijou must pretend to be dating the daughter of the leader of the opposing yakuza gang.

Ichijou doesn’t want to get involved and his father told him that he must forget dating any other girl and focus liking this girl they set him up with.

When the two are introduces, Ichijou is shocked that the girl is Chitoge Kirisaki. And for both of them, they must promise to be boyfriend and girlfriend for three whole years and be convincing to both yakuza gangs that they are truly in love.

Both don’t want to be involved with each other but they have no choice. But now they must find a way to co-exist with each other as both yakuza gangs are suspicious of their relationship especially Kirisaki’s guardian, Claude.

Meanwhile, Ichijou still wants to ask Onodera if she is the girl with the key and Onodera is about to let him know that she is. But before they can, the whole school are told that both Ichijo and Kirasaki are boyfriend and girlfriend.

And now it has made things tough for both Ichijou and Kirisaki, but can they keep this charade of being in love with each other, especially if they despite one another?

And since then, there are a few other complications as not only Chitoge and Onodera have fallen for Raku, but also Chitoge’s bodyguard Tsugumi and Marika Tachibana, who Raku’s father promised Marika’s father that they would marry?

But while Raku Ichijou and Chitoge Kirisaki are supposed to fake their relationship, Chitoge is starting to realize that with each moment spent with Raku, she is slowly falling in love with him.

For volume 19, Chitoge Kirasaki’s father has told her that she and Raku will no longer need to fake their relationship because she and Tsugumi will be moving back to the United States. This leaves Chitoge to become devastated that she will never ever confess her feelings to Raku and will never be around him and her friends. What last resort will Chitoge and Tsugumi pull in order for them to stay in Japan?

Meanwhile, what happens when Onodera and Raku goes on their first date together during the holidays? And what happens when Marika kidnaps Raku?

For volume 20, the conclusion of Raku and Marika stuck on the island and Raku wanting to know what is really wrong with Marika’s health.

Meanwhile, it’s New Year’s Day and time for Raku and friends to celebrate.

As Raku asks if Chitoge if she likes anyone and she tells him that she does, he suddenly starts to feel jealous.  Why is that?

And Yui receives an order to get married now that she has turned 20-years old.  But when she confesses her feelings to Raku, how will he respond?


With volume 20 of Naoshi Komi’s “Nisekoi: False Love”, the manga starts to heat up with the series now heading towards its final volumes.

As we have read many volumes and seeing women who have fallen for Raku, I think we are now starting to see the storylines start to narrow down which girl Raku would end up with.

With this storyline, we get to see Raku’s feelings for Chitoge start to intensify as he gets jealous when she tells him that she likes someone (not telling him that it’s him).  And it starts to eat Raku up inside and he doesn’t know why.

But the primary storyline revolves around Yui, who is now turning 20 and she is ordered to get married to fulfill her duty as Don and she must make her first major adult decision or be arranged to marry someone else.

Feeling the pressure, the only person she has had feelings for is Raku and now Yui confesses her love.  But how will he react?

20 volumes in through the series, I really enjoy this manga series because it’s fresh take on the young promise made by youngsters to marry each other and it also has that similarity to “Ranma 1/2” of two people arranged by their parents to be together, although not to be married but to have this fake romance for three years. And then having multiple young ladies vying for his attention.

But with the introduction of other girls who made promises when they were younger, we clearly don’t know which girl Raku promised to marry when he was younger. But with everyone vying for Raku’s attention (and he being totally oblivious to what’s going on), it makes for a very entertaining storyline and series!

The artwork by Naoshi Komi is well-drawn, the series is full of humor and for the most part quite delightful in capturing their emotions on each page. But Naoshi Komi’s manga series has been nothing but delightful and very entertaining!

How will Raku respond to Yui’s confession of love? Meanwhile, Raku gets jealous when Chitoge tells him that she likes a guy. All this and more in this entertaining 20th volume of Naoshi Komi’s “Nisekoi: False Love”.  Recommended!

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My Hero Academia Vol. 7 by Kohei Horikoshi (a J!-ENT Manga Review)

February 26, 2017 by · Leave a Comment 

Korei Horikoshi’s “My Hero Academia” is fast-paced and enjoyable! The characters and their powers can be a bit way over-the-top but its unpredictability and enjoyable storyline, makes “My Hero Academia”, a manga series worth checking out! It’s the battle against Hero Killer Stain in vol. 7 of “My Hero Academia”!

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© 2014 by Kohei Horikoshi. All Rights Reserved.


MANGA TITLE: My Hero Academia vol. 7

STORY AND ART BY: Kohei Horikoshi

FIRST PUBLISHED IN JAPAN: SHUEISHA, Inc.

PUBLISHED IN USA BY: VIZ Media, LLC/Shonen Jump Manga

RATED: T for Older Teen

RELEASE DATE: February 7, 2017


Midoriya has learned a few tricks from Gran Torino, but some things just have to be experienced to be understood. Even though he’s not ready, when the League of Villains attacks in the town of Hosu, Midoriya rushes to help Ida, who is engaged in a life-or-death struggle with Hero Killer Stain. Stain has some very particular ideas about heroes and their place in society—and he means to purge every hero he can find!


The League of Villains have attacked the town of Hosu and now Midoriya, Ida and Todoroki must take on the powerful Hero Killer, Stain.

Also, it’s time for the Practical Exam and people are paired up to take on an established hero.  For Midoriya and Bakugo, they find out they must take on All Might.

Find out in Kohei Horikoshi’s “My Hero Academia” vol. 7!

What is “My Hero Academia” all about?

From Kohei Horikoshi, the creator of “Omagadoki Dobutsuen” and “Barrage”, comes his manga series “My Hero Academia” (Boku no Hero Academia).

The story revolves around Quirks (people who begin to manifest special abilities) and all of a sudden people in the world began to have many people who became superpowered individuals. Some who use their powers for good, some who use their powers for evil intentions.

Because the government is not equipped to deal with these superpowered thugs, a special group of heroic superpowered individuals came together to protect the people and keep the peace.

The series revolves around a boy named Izuku Midoriya, a boy born Quirkless and looked up to the world’s top hero, All Might.

One day, All Might received a near-fatal wound and now, he is losing his powers. But somehow Izuku began to inherit All Might’s Quirk.

The League of Villains are up to no good again and they have targeted the town of Hosu and Hero Killer Stain must be stopped.  Can Midoriya, Ida and Todoroki defeat him?

Meanwhile, it’s time for the Practical Exam and in pairs, they must take on a hero.  For Midoriya and Bakugo, they must take on All Might!


At first, I was wondering if “My Hero Academy” will be like another “X-Men” style storyline of humans vs. mutants and the world fearing mutantkind. In this case, humankind fearing Quirks.

What I enjoy about this series is the fact that our heroes are not exactly what you expect in terms of heroic characters. Whereas superpowered individuals in American comic books often showcase a character that is ripped, muscular, charismatic or gorgeous, “My Hero Academia” features regular characters and its main protagonist, Izuku Midoriya, is wide-eyed and looks far too innocent and unlikely to be a hero.

The seventh volume puts Midoriya and friends in one of the most challenging battles they have ever faced as they must take on the League of Villains Hero Killer Stain.

Meanwhile, the Academy is having its Practical Exam and must be paired to take on a Hero, but with Midoriya and Bakugo, they find out they must take on All Might.

As always, artwork is well-done and some panels looking more cartoony in nature, but for the overall character designs are appealing and fun to look at and the action sequences are very well-detailed.

For the most part, Korei Horikoshi’s “My Hero Academia” is fast-paced and enjoyable! The characters and their powers can be a bit way over-the-top but its unpredictability and enjoyable storyline, makes “My Hero Academia”, a manga series worth checking out! It’s the battle against Hero Killer Stain in vol. 7 of “My Hero Academia”!

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Bleach Vol. 69 – Story & Art by Tite Kubo (a J!-ENT Manga Review)

February 26, 2017 by · Leave a Comment 

“Bleach” vol. 69 is an action-packed volume as Yhwatch is now in control and Ichigo and friends need to prepare for the major battle that lies ahead. Meanwhile, the return of one of characters from “Bleach” past as they will join forces with Ichigo in hopes to defeat Yhwach. If you love this manga series, this latest volume is recommended!

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© 2001 Tite Kubo. All Rights Reserved.


MANGA TITLE: Bleach Vol. 69

STORY AND ART BY: Tite Kubo (久保 宣章)

FIRST PUBLISHED IN JAPAN: SHUEISHA, Inc.

PUBLISHED IN USA BY: VIZ Media, LLC/Shonen Jump Manga

RATED: T for Older Teen

RELEASE DATE: March 7, 2017


With the death of Reio at the hands of the Quincy King Yhwach, the world starts to crumble. Soul Reaper Captain General Kyoraku enlists Aizen to help in the war against the Quincies, but is relying on a traitor a wise move? And as Ichigo heads toward Yhwach, he runs into an unexpected figure!


With the death of Reio, Yhwach has now grown powerful and now plans to recreate his own kingdom known as Wahr Welt (Castle of the True World) on top of the Seireitei.  As Ichigo and friends plan to stage a full on assault against Yhwach, Ichigo gets some help from familiar faces.

Also, featuring the backstory of Jugram Haschwalth and Bazz-B.

Find out what happens in Tite Kubo’s action-packed volume 69 of “Bleach”!

What is “Bleach?”

For those who are not so familiar with “Bleach”, “Bleach” has a strong fan following and since its run began back in 2001, series creator, writer and illustrator Noriaki “Tite” Kubo has been hard at work, continuing to crank chapter after chapter for Weekly Shonen Jump in Japan and with the success of the series extending out to films, OVA’s, feature films and video games and other merchandise.

Because of its airing on the Cartoon Network and it being featured on Shonen Jump magazine, “Bleach” has gone on to become a fan favorite in America but also fans all over the world.

A Brief History of what “Bleach” is about

“Bleach” is a story about a guy named Ichigo Kurasaki who has a gift in which he can see spirits. One day, he saw a Soul Reaper (one who can govern the flow of souls between the human world and the afterlife) named Rukia Kukichiki who has come to find a Hollow (a lost soul). She ends up being wounded in battle when she tried to defend Ichigo and so she illegally transfers her reiatsu (spiritual pressure) to him, so that he can defeat the Hollow. But during the process, he nearly takes all of her energy and becomes a Soul Reaper himself and defeats the Hollow quite easily. So, the first storyline arc features Rukia now powerless stranded in the human world until she has the time to recover her true powers, while Ichigo fills in and battles Hollows in her place. And with each fight, Rukia starts to notice something special about Ichigo’s abilities.

The second storyline arc of “Bleach” features the Soul Society wanting to sentence Rukia to death for transferring her powers to Ichigo. His friends also begin to develop special abilities. His childhood friend, Orihime Inoue, is given special abilities courtesy of her loving brother who has turned into a Hollow. Yasutora “Chad” Sato is Ichigo’s tall friend (who is half Japanese/half Mexican) who suddenly becomes aware of spirits and develops an ability to have a special armored right arm that has special abilities. And Ichigo’s rival/friend, Uryu Ishida, who is a descendant of a hollow hunting group known as the Quincy and are enemies of the Soul Reapers.

As their adventures have continued, we have seen Ichigo and his friends getting stronger, developing new abilities and taking on their most difficult foes yet but also earning the respect of his friends and the Soul Society, having saved their lives time and time again. But this time around, there comes a new enemy that may be so powerful that Ichigo may not be able to take them on…

Enter the Vandenreich!

The Current Storyline

We have only heard of how the Quincies had perished after a long feud with the Soul Reapers. The Soul Reapers which believed in having the soul of a hollow crossover to the Soul Society, while the Quincies believed in the total destruction of the hollow’s soul. And while the two had tried to work out their dispute, in the end, it let do a war in which the Soul Reapers vanquished the Quincies.

With only Uryu Ishida thought to be the last Quincy alive, in volume 55 of “Bleach”, it was revealed that one of the deadly Quincy’s from the past, Yhwach, was not killed and has assembled a group known as the Vandenreich to eliminate all Soul Reapers and destroy the Soul Society.

Many have gone missing in Karakura Town and while the Vandenreich have made their presence known to Captain Yamamoto by killing 1st Division Lt. Sasakibe. Also, Hueco Mundo Arrancars have been attacked by the Hueco Mundo Army led by Quilge Opie who are trying to force the Arrancars to join them or else be killed.

As Nel goes to the human world to beg for Ichigo to save Hueco Mundo, Ichigo, Kisuke Urahara, Chad and Orihime hurry to Hueco Mundo to see what is happening. And with the distraction caused in that area, Yhwach orders the Vandenreich to attack the Soul Reapers in their home area inside the Seiretei and the top Quincy combatants of the Vandenreich, the Stern Ritter continues their destruction by trying to kill all Soul Reaper captains.

In vol. 57, as Ichigo tries to hurry back to the Soul Society, he is encased in some object and is unable to escape from it. Meanwhile, Byakuya Kuchiki and Renji Abarai take on Stern Ritter’s “As Nodt”, Shuhei Hisagi takes on Stern Ritter’s “O” [The Overkill] Driscoll Berci and it looks like that without using their Bankai, the Soul Reapers have no chance.

Until Division 1 Captain, Shigekuni Yamamoto Genryusai, the most power soul reaper decides it is time to intervene and try to kill all of the Stern Ritter.

Leading up to a battle between Soul Reaper leader Captain Yamamoto vs. the King of Quincy’s, Yhwach.

In vol. 58, Captain Yamamoto unleashes his bankai on Yhwach, a bankai that is so powerful that he would lost his arm. With the great power of Yamamoto’s Bankai, it was thought to have killed Yhwach but instead, it is revealed that the man who died is one of his followers who has the power to shapeshift.

With many Soul Reapers badly injured or have been slaughtered by the Vandenreich, others try to get Ichigo Kurosaki to fight Yhwach but will Ichigo be powerful enough to take him or the Vandenreich on?

Meanwhile, there may be a group that can help Ichigo fight against Yhwach and its the mysterious and secretive Squad Zero.

In vol. 59, after the death of Captain Yamamoto and the Soul Reapers trying to assess the damages to their corps, Ichigo and Renji are taken in by Squad Zero to partake in their special training in hopes to fight the Vandenreich.

But as the two go through the simple path of meeting Kirio Hikifune, the two must go through the tests of Oh-Etsu Nimaiya, best know as the creator of the zanpakuto that each Soul Reaper is responsible for.

Meanwhile, as Ichigo and Renji undergo training, Kenpachi Zaraki is engaged in a fight to the death with Division 4 Captain Retsu Unohana. But why are these two Soul Reapers fighting to the death?

And last, the biggest reveal from Ichigo’s father of who and what his mother is and why he is special.

In vol. 60, all is revealed of who Ichigo’s parents are and how Ichigo became the person he is today and why his supernatural abilities are unlike others.

But also the biggest reveal of how Ichigo’s mother died and the true identity of Zangetsu.

In volume 61 of “Bleach” as the Vandenreich has removed the protection of the Seiretei and initiated their attack on the Soul Reapers.

The war has begun and are the Soul Reapers ready for battle?

In volume 62 as the battle between the Soul Reapers and the Vandenreich continues but do the Soul Reapers have any chance to fight them since they have no access to their Bankai? Meanwhile, Ichigo has complete his training, but can he get to the Seireitei in time?

In volume 63. The battle continues as Kensei Muguruma and Roujuro Otoribashi takes on the arrogant and very powerful wrestler, Mask de Masculine. Meanwhile Ruki Kuchiki must take on the devious As Nodt. But are these Soul Reapers powerful enough to take on these powerful Vandenreich members?

In volume 64, Soul Reapers Yachiru Kusajishi and Isane Kotetsu are left to fight the powerful Vandenreich, Gremmy Thoumeaux and the “Vanishing Point” Gwenael Lee. But as the Soul Reapers are near defeat, the powerful Kenpachi Zaraki comes to their aid.

In volume 65, Giselle Gewelle, Meninas Mcallon, Liltotto Lamperd and Candice Catnipp are nearly defeating Kenpachi Zaraki but the long awaited moment takes place as Ichigo Kurosaki makes his return!

But was Ichigo Kurosaki’s return all part of the plan of Yhwach in order to invade the Reiokyu?

In volume 66, the feared Gigi has brought out her zombie army and has taken control of fallen Soul Reapers such as Toushiro Hitsugaya to take on Mayuri Kurotsuchi. Also, Stern Ritter “L” Pepe Waccabrada takes on Kuchiki Kouga.

Meanwhile Yhwach unleashes his royal guards, Stern Ritter “M – Miracle” Gerard Valkyrie, Stern Ritter “X – The X-Axis” Lille Barro, Stern Ritter “C – The compulsory” Pernida Parnkgjas and Stern Ritter “D – The Death Dealing – Askin Nakk Le Vaz” on Senjumaru Shutara and Oh-Etsu Nimaiya.

In volume 67, Squad Zero continues to protect the palace but Oh-Etsu Nimaiya must take on Askin nakk Le Vaar, while Ichibe Hyosube must take on Yhwach.

Who will survive and who will perish in this latest battle?

In volume 68, Yhwach has defeated Squad Zero and is now trying to destroy Reio, the Soul King. But Ichigo and friends manage to arrive in time to take on Yhwach.

Meanwhile, Urahara has devised a plan to create a bridge that will allow the captains to storm Reikyoku to defeath Ywach, while, Sunsui Kyoraku has decided to free one of the Soul Reaper’s most hated criminals and a man who used to be one of their own.

Also, who will Uryu Ishida help, his friends or Yhwach?

In volume 69, with the death of Reio, Yhwach is now in control and wants to create his new world.  Because Yhwach used a lot of his Sternritter to accomplish his goal, a few of them feel betrayed and are now willing to team up with the Soul Reapers to stop him.  Also, a few familiar faces from Ichigo’s past have come to visit and give him a hand in the upcoming battle.

Also, we learn more about the history of Bazz and Jugram and so much more!


With the latest 69th volume of “Bleach”, Yhwach has reached Reiokyu and destroyed Reio. And now he is in complete control.

With Yhwach now wanting to create a whole new world, Soul Reaper with a few Sternritter (who were deceived by Yhwach) team up to prepare for the upcoming battle.  Meanwhile, Ichigo has a few familiar faces from his past, coming to join and fight alongside with him.

In Japan, as of April 2016, Tite Kubo has now released a total of 74 manga releases, with the 68th release in the U.S. , one can hope that Viz Media increases the manga count to an extra issue or two per year, so we don’t have to wait too long to read the next graphic novel. With three “Bleach” manga releases per year, you’re pretty much waiting 5-6 months between each release.

“Bleach” vol. 69 is an action-packed volume as Yhwatch is now in control and Ichigo and friends need to prepare for the major battle that lies ahead. Meanwhile, the return of one of characters from “Bleach” past as they will join forces with Ichigo in hopes to defeat Yhwach. If you love this manga series, this latest volume is recommended!

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Mobile Suit Gundam Thunderbolt Vol. 2 – Story and Art by Yasuo Ohtagaki (a J!-ENT Manga Review)

February 26, 2017 by · Leave a Comment 

Both the Federation and Zeon put everything on the line for this major skirmish for control of the Thunderbolt Sector.  “Mobile Suit Gundam Thunderbolt” is a mecha series worth reading!

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© 2012 by Yasuo Ohtagaki. All Rights Reserved.


MANGA TITLE: Mobile Suit Gundam Thunderbolt Vol. 2

STORY AND ART BY: Yasuo Ohtagaki

FIRST PUBLISHED IN JAPAN: Shogakukan

PUBLISHED IN USA BY: VIZ Signature

RATED: T for Older Teen

RELEASE DATE: February 21, 2017


As the struggle for the Thunderbolt Sector heats up, the Federation mounts a surprise attack on Zeon. Attrition forces both sides to deploy Mobile Suits that are not quite battle ready—the Federation’s Full Armor Gundam and Zeon’s Reuse P. Device—the “Psycho Zaku.” Getting these machines into the fight means tough sacrifices for both sides, and for the ace Zeon sniper Daryl Lorenz in particular. Meanwhile, the Federation must send barely trained recruits into combat. Battle is joined and Lorenz and his Federation nemesis Io Fleming cross swords once again in a bitter struggle for vengeance and survival.


As the battle of the Thunderbolt Sector heats up, both sides decide to put everything on the line.  The Federation gathers young recruits into combat to lead Io Fleming and his Gundam towards the Federation.  While the Principality of Zeon plans to allow Zeon Sniper Daryl Lorenz to pilot the Psycho Zaku and lead other pilots to plan a surprise attack on the Federation.  Who will become victorious?

What is “Mobile Suit Gundam Thunderbolt” about?

Back in 2012, mangaka Yasuo Ohtagaki wrote and illustrated the manga “Mobile Suit Gundam Thunderbolt”.

With eight volumes published, the series would receive a 4-episode ONA anime adaptation and a second season is slated for adaptation.

The manga is set during the One Year War (U.C. 0079) and the Earth Federation’s Brotherhood and the Principality of Zeon’s Living Dead Division are in battle in the Thunderbolt Section, a zone that is littered with debris from the destruction of space colonies and because the area has numerous electrical discharging.

Fighting for the Earth Federation is Ace pilot, Io Fleming and for the Principality of Zeon, Zeon’s best sniper, Daryl Lorenz is focused on killing Fleming.

As Io won the first meeting between the two, this time around, both the Federation and Zeon plan to escalate the battle as the Federation plans to send the Gundam in one more time to finish the job, but leading the Gundam are young recruits.  Meanwhile, Zeon follows Daryl Lorenz piloting the new Psycho Zaku.

What will be the outcome of this major battle in the Thunderbolt Sector?


When it comes to the Universal Century Gundam stories, they are my favorite. And while many of us have been entertained by stories involving Amuro Ray, there have been a variety of stories that have taken place in the Universal Century, some more deeper than the others and others just focusing on the action.

“Mobile Suit Gundam Thunderbolt” may seem like the latter because of the action focusing on Earth Federation vs. the Principality of Zeon but once the manga goes into character development, the storyline focuses on how people are growing tired of the war. People sick of seeing deaths of friends and loved ones.

Io Fleming is a man born from a wealthy family and he and his friends are thrusted into war. Fleming is secretly dating Captain Claudia Peer, a captain who is sick and tired of war and that the Earth Federation keeps sending teenage pilots as reinforcements and always depressed and tense when Fleming, the Beehive’s best pilot goes to fight against the Principality of Zeon. Along with Fleming and another childhood friend, engineer Cornelius Kaka, all three were born in privilege and are now assigned to the Beehive.

Fleming is an excellent pilot and surprises the Principality of Zeon when he shows up and takes many of them out with his Gundam and always playing his jazz music through a pilot radio station.

Meanwhile, on the opposite end are the Living Dead Division of the Principality of Zeon. A group that is put together of people who have been significantly injured or maimed and are still fighting with prosthetics.

Their best fighter, Zeon Chief Petty Officer Daryl Lorenz, is an excellent sniper and wants revenge against Fleming for killing his teammates. He has lost his legs in battle and carries a retro-style radio that he listens to in battle.

We see the other side as those who feel they are wronged and want revenge against the Earth Federation for the death of their loved ones.

Zeon scientist Karla Mitchum is responsible for giving the soldiers prosthetics but when her loved one is killed, she wants Daryl to rid of the Earth Federation, especially the man responsible, Io Fleming.

But we see how the grass is definitely not greener on the other side and how difficult life was for children growing up in the Principality of Zeon and in order to make sure their families were taken care of, they had to join the military at a young age.

So, the second volume of “Mobile Suit Gundam Thunderbolt” gives us a look as both sides are about to put everything on the line.  The Federation takes in their youngest recruits that will be responsible for bringing Io Fleming and his Gundam into Zion territory, while the Federation is unaware that Zeon has plans for a sneak attack with their best, Daryl Lorenz piloting his Psycho Zaku.

The character designs, artwork and storyline by Yasuo Ohtagaki are wonderful and I really like how the emotion of the characters are depicted.  Storyline has been very good so far and for mecha fans, “Mobile Suit Gundam Thunderbolt” vol. 2 is recommended!

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