All posts tagged: naoki urasawa

Pluto Volume 3 Review

Pluto has been on my mind for weeks. After reading the heart-stopping third volume, I was left awestruck. What could I possibly hope to say that could do this justice? How could I possibly convey the thoughts racing through my head? How could I ever critically assess this masterpiece? It is a task that has rolled around in my mind as I dragged my feet on putting this piece together. As I sat pondering Urasawa’s genius manga, a familiar song began to sound from my radio. Suddenly it hit me, this is what Pluto is really all about. “Love and hate, get it wrong, She cut me right back down to size, Sleep the day, let it fade, Who was there to take your place? No one knows, never will, Mostly me and mostly you. What do you say? What do you do, when it all comes down?” – Gavin Rossdale (Comedown by Bush) So what does it all mean? To cut a long story short, Pluto is an epic exploration of existentialism and the things …

Pluto Volume 2 Review

Pluto continues to amaze with a fantastic second volume of manga following on from the shocking events of volume one. As the body count continues to rise, Gisecht turns to a familiar face for assistance in his investigation. The case grows more and more difficult as questions outweigh answers and Gisecht discovers that robot memory may not be infallible. It goes without saying that Urasawa is a brilliant mangaka, but having the incredible source material of ‘The World’s Strongest Robot’ arc from the original Astro Boy does go along way. The magic of Tezuka’s original translates incredibly well into Urasawa’s distinctive gritty style. What I find most compelling however is the way that Urasawa takes Tezuka’s work and gives it a new perspective. His look into this world where robots and humans must coexist is utterly tantalizing. This volume focuses in on the notion that what makes humans primarily different from robots is their ability to forget. What is most interesting about this idea is that Pluto immediately proceeds to break that idea down and …

Pluto Volume 1 Review

With a pedigree by the names of Naoki Urasawa and Osamu Tezuka, it is damn near impossible for Pluto to not be good. This first volume of Urasawa’s re-imagining of the wonderful world envisioned by Osamu Tezuka is utterly remarkable. Exploring human emotion through artificial beings is an incredible thing to tackle and Urasawa does so with the deftest of delicacy. Pluto tells us a lot about what it means to be human, all through a robot’s eyes. Urasawa’s take on Tezuka’s world of Astro Boy is a dark one indeed. The style feels almost like a cross between Urasawa’s Monster and Tezuka’s Astro Boy. A winning combination undoubtedly and the direction this story takes is astonishing to say the very least. The series follows a slew of murders taking place across the globe in a future world where humans and robots coexist. We follow Gisecht a robot detective tasked with the case of the series of murders. Gisecht looks very human in appearance, however on the inside he is machine. Throughout his travels to various …

20th Century Boys Volume 1 Review

The 21st Century may not be ready for 20th Century Boys, a manga that is so far ahead of its time that it may take another century for the world to truly get it’s brilliance. Naoki Urasawa is the brains behind the work and with a rich history of intelligent, ground-breaking manga, it isn’t any surprise that 20th Century Boys proves to be unlike anything else in manga today. The manga series originally began serialization at the turn of the century, a time of momentous change in the world, but what 20th Century Boys offers is more than just a change from the norm, it reinvents the norm, this is Urasawa’s world and we are all bearing witness to it. From the very first few pages of 20th Century Boys Volume 1 it becomes abundantly clear that this is not your average manga. The framing, the detail, the angles, the fine touches that add immeasurably to the visual messages that Urasawa is trying to convey. There are machinations at work in this volume that would likely …