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Manga Monday- Hunter x Hunter

Manga Monday- Hunter x Hunter

Hunter × Hunter (abbreviated: HxH) is a Japanese manga series written and illustrated by Yoshihiro Togashi. It has been serialized in Weekly Shōnen Jump magazine and journal since March 3, 1998, although the manga has frequently gone on extended hiatuses since 2006. As of June 2017, 360 chapters have been collected into 34 volumes by Shueisha. The story focuses on a young boy named Gon Freecss, who discovers that his father, who he was told was dead, is actually alive and a world-renowned Hunter, a licensed profession for those who specialize in fantastic pursuits such as locating rare or unidentified animal species, treasure hunting, surveying unexplored enclaves, or hunting down lawless individuals. Despite being abandoned by his father, Gon departs upon a journey to follow in his footsteps, pass the rigorous Hunter Examination, and eventually find his father. Along the way, Gon meets various other Hunters and also encounters the paranormal. The original inspiration for the manga came from Togashi’s own collecting hobby.

Hunter × Hunter has been a huge critical and financial success and has become one of Shueisha’s best-selling manga series, having sold 66 million copies in Japan alone as of 2014.

Hunters are licensed, elite members of humanity who are capable of tracking down secret treasures, rare beasts, or even other individuals. To obtain a license one must pass the rigorous annual Hunter Examination run by the Hunter Association, which has a success rate of less than one in a hundred-thousand. A Hunter may be awarded up to three stars; a single star for making “remarkable achievements in a particular field”; they may then be upgraded to two stars for “holding an official position” and mentoring another Hunter up to single star level; and finally upgraded to three stars for “remarkable achievements in multiple fields.”

Nen is the ability to control one’s own life energy or aura, which is constantly emitted from them whether they know it or not. There are four basic Nen techniques; Ten  maintains the aura in the body, strengthening it for defense, Zetsu shuts the aura flow off, useful for concealing one’s presence and relieving fatigue, Ren  enables a user to produce more Nen, and Hatsu is a person’s specific use of Nen. Nen users are classified into six types based on their Hatsu abilities; Enhancers strengthen and reinforce their natural physical abilities, Emitters project aura out of their bodies, Manipulators control objects or living things, Transmuters change the type or properties of their aura, Conjurers create objects out of their aura, and Specialists  have unique abilities that do not fall into the previous categories. A Nen user can enter into a Contract whereby pledging to follow certain Limitations , their abilities are strengthened in relation to how strict they are. An example of this is Kurapika who, in order to have an unbreakable chain that will hold members of the Phantom Troupe no matter what, offered his life should he use it on anyone other than its members.

 

Manga Monday- Aria

Manga Monday- Aria

Aria is a utopian science fantasy manga by Kozue Amano. The series was originally titled Aqua when it was published by Enix in the magazine Monthly Stencil, being retitled when it moved to Mag Garden’s magazine Comic Blade. Aqua was serialized in Stencil from 2001 to 2002 and collected in two tankōbon volumes. Aria was serialized in Comic Blade from November 2002 to April 2008 and collected in twelve volumes.

ADV Manga released English translations of the first three volumes of Aria in 2004, before dropping the license. Tokyopop then acquired the English-language rights to Aqua as well as Aria. Tokyopop released the two volumes of Aqua on October 2007 and February 2008, and six volumes of Aria between January 2008 and December 2010.

Story

Aqua and Aria take place in the early 24th century, starting in 2301 AD, in the city of Neo-Venezia on the planet Aqua—formerly Mars, which was renamed after being terraformed into a habitable planet covered in oceans around 150 years beforehand. Neo-Venezia, based on Venice in both architecture and atmosphere, is a harbor city of narrow canals instead of streets, traveled by unmotorized gondolas.

At the start of Aqua, a young woman named Akari arrives from Manhome (formerly Earth) to become a trainee gondolier with Aria Company, one of the three most prestigious water-guide companies in the city. Her dream is to become an undine, a gondolier who acts as a tour guide. As she trains, Akari befriends her mentor Alicia, trainees and seniors from rival companies – Aika, Alice, Akira and Athena and others in the Neo-Venezia city. Aqua covers Akari’s arrival on Aqua and her early training as a Pair, or apprentice, while Aria continues her training as a Single, or journeyman, culminating in the graduation of her, Aika, and Alice as full Prima undines.

Each chapter is a slice of life episode of Akari’s exploration of the worlds of gondoliering, Neo-Venezia, and Aqua itself. Amano frequently uses several pages of lush art to depict an environment, showing the wonder of both everyday activities as well as one-of-a-kind events. It has been described by reviewers as very similar in tone and effect to Yokohama Kaidashi Kikō.

Manga Monday- Samurai Gun

Manga Monday- Samurai Gun

Samurai Gun is a manga series written and illustrated by Kazuhiro Kumagai and serialized in Weekly Young Jump. It was adapted into a 13-episode anime series directed by Kazuhito Kikuchi. The anime is licensed in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom and Germany by ADV Films, which co-financed the series’ production. There has been no announcement of the manga being translated into the English language. As the title suggests, it features samurai using guns.

Plot

It is the beginning of the industrial revolution, and feudal Japan is in turmoil. The ruling Shogun are wielding their abusive powers to instill fear and dominance over their oppressed subjects. Beatings, imprisonment, rape and even murder are the adopted tactics chosen to maintain their reign. The bloodshed must end. A group of Samurai have banded together, and, with the development of new weapons and new technology, they have both the will and the hardware to stand up and fight. Ichimatsu is one of these fighters. By day, he works incognito at a local tavern, in the evenings he frequents the brothels, and by the dark of night, he doles out some big-time, gun-barrel justice. He is here to help. He is Samurai Gun.

Characters

Ichimatsu 

is one of the samurai guns and the main protagonist of the series. During the day, he works at a local tavern. During the night, however, he delivers merciless justice under the name of “Samurai Gun”. Voiced by Illich Guardiola in the English adaptation and Showtaro Morikubo in the Japanese version.

Daimon 

is another samurai gun who works many missions with Ichimatsu. His cover during the day is a teacher and owes a large tab to the tavern owner Ichimatsu works for. Voiced by Ty Mahany in the English adaptation and Katsuyuki Konishi in the Japanese version.