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The Prince of Tennis Vol. 5 (Story and Art by Takeshi Konomi) (A J!-ENT Manga Review)

December 29, 2004 by  



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Seishun Academy advances to take on Fudomine and now have the lead by 2 to 1.  Next up is Ryoma who must take on Shinji of Fudomine and if he wins, Seishun advances.   Can he do it? “The Prince of Tennis” vol. 5 also features a bonus chapter of the original “Prince of Tennis” one-chapter short that was published on Jump before “Prince of Tennis” became a series.  Volume 5 is recommended!

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© 1999 by Takeshi Konomi. All Rights Reserved.

MANGA TITLE: The Prince of Tennis vol. 5

STORY AND ART BY: Takeshi Konomi

FIRST PUBLISHED IN JAPAN: SHUEISHA, Inc.

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

RATED: A for All Ages

RELEASE DATE: December 29, 2004

With only one victory away from advancing to the city tournament, Seishun Academy fields Prince of Tennis Ryoma Echizen to compete against the mysterious and mumbling Shinji of the Fudomine Team. As the punishing battle of skills unfolds, Ryoma develops a muscle paralysis called “Spot,” which leaves him with barely enough strength to grip the racket, much less swing it.

Refusing to go down without a fight, Ryoma unleashes a “two-sword fighting style” technique that only talented, ambidextrous players are able to execute. Will Ryoma have the strength to pull himself out of the ditch and beat Shinji? And what awaits his ex-pro tennis player father, Nanjiro, when he comes to watch his son play?

As Seishun Academy advances in the tournament, they take on Fudomine Junior High and Seishun is ahead 2-1.  Next up is round three as Ryoma takes on Shini in singles competition.

With many in the audience think Seishun is throwing in a 7th grader for an easy win for Fudomine, they aren’t too familiar with Ryoma’s skills and now, the matchup featuring two intense competitiors.

Who will win this matchup between Seishun vs. Fudomine? Find out in Takeshi Konomi’s hit manga, “The Prince of Tennis” Vol. 5!

What is “The Prince of Tennis”?

In 1999, tennis player and manga artist Takeshi Konomi created a series known as “Tennis no Ojisama”.

Published in Shueisha’s “Weekly Shonen Jump” in July 1999, the series became one of the most popular sports manga series created and would eventually lead to an anime series adaptation by Trans Arts and Nihon Ad Systems & TV Tokyo.

Suffice to say, the series became an incredible hit and popular media franchise which would lead to video games and more!

With Seishun leading with two wins to one, they need one more win to advance to the next round in the tournament.

And next up is Ryoma Echizen vs. Shinji of Fudomine.  And immediately, Ryoma goes on the offensive to show how great a player he is, even though he’s a 7th grader.  But Shinji uses a technique that can lead to spot paralysis for a tennis player.  Will Ryoma be able to bounce back from Shinji’s new tactic?

Meanwhile, “Pro Tennis Monthly” writer Inoue and another writer try to see if they can get an interview with former pro Nanjiro Echizen and also to discuss his son Ryoma, but Nanjiro will only talk if Inoue can get a ball past him.  Can he do it?

It’s Ryoma’s first major matchup for Seishun Academy as he takes on Shinji of Fudomine.  If Ryoma wins, they advance in the tournament.

But what happens when a major accident takes place on the court leaving Ryoma a gash on his head.  While they can stop bleeding temporarily for only about ten minutes, if the blood keeps dripping, he will have to forfeit the match.

But Ryoma’s determined in beating Shinji and he intends to do it before ten minutes are up.  Can he do it?

Also, what happens when Inoue and his assistant at “Pro Tennis Monthly” confront Ryoma’s father, Nanjiro Echizen?

For the most part, this latest volume of “The Prince of Tennis” is the most intense volume yet as we get to see and read about a full match involving Ryoma taking on Shinji of Fudomine.  Shinji is a guy who has multiple talents and is known to beat his opponent late in the game.  But with Ryoma experiencing spot paralysis thanks to the shots that Shinji has been giving to him, let alone an accident leaving Ryoma with a major cut, he has only ten minutes to play and Ryoma is determined in beating Shinji within that time frame before the game is forfeited.

One will notice also that volume 5 is slightly thicker and that is because it features the original one-story of what “Prince of Tennis” was originally supposed to be and was published in “Shonen Jump”.  Writer Takeshi Konomi talks about how the names were different in the original print but to make things coherent, he uses the names of the characters of “Prince of Tennis” in the original one story only for the release of this volume.  So, it’s great that this original storyline is being included!

Character design by Takeshi Konomi are well-done, the storyline manages to capture the excitement of tennis and strategy especially for this singles match between Ryoma and Shinji.

Overall, the fifth volume of “The Prince of Tennis” is simply delightful, wonderful tennis competitions and an exciting and addictive manga.

Simply a great sports manga and I can’t wait for volume six! Recommended!

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