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Film Friday- Pandora Hearts

Film Friday- Pandora Hearts

An anime adaptation produced by Xebec began airing on April 2, 2009, and finished airing on September 24, 2009. On February 11, 2010, NIS America announced it would release the anime series in North America. Nine OVAs were also broadcast in Japan, airing from July 24, 2009 to March 25, 2010.

Oz Vessalius

is the fifteen-year-old protagonist. He has blond hair and green eyes. He is from the prestigious Vessalius family. His father, Zai, is the reigning lord. His mother was killed by the Nightray family; despite this, he retains a bright, optimistic, and energetic personality. The story of Pandora Hearts begins when Oz turns fifteen. During the ceremony to celebrate his legal adulthood, Oz is dragged into the Abyss for the ‘sin of his existence’. There, he meets a young girl named Alice who turns out to be a Chain – a monster born in the Abyss. Oz makes a contract with her so they can both escape the abyss. Upon returning to the real world, he discovers that 10 years have passed. In order to find out what exactly his ‘sin’ is, he decides to work under Xerxes Break as part of Pandora. During this, it is shown that when he was young, he worked hard to gain praise and recognition from his father. However, he discovered that his father hated him to the point of not wanting to touch him. After experiencing this, Oz began to think that there is no guaranteed thing in the world. He thought of himself as weak. He decided that, in order to protect people, he should at least remain an obedient child and let harm come his way. After traveling into the Cheshire Cat’s lair, Oz meets Jack Vessalius and becomes his ‘medium’. Jack eventually speaks at Pandora’s headquarters and the public hail Oz as a ‘hero’. Oz finds that he can swap control of his body with Jack if he calls hard enough and may sometimes even see snippets of Jack’s memories. According to himself he is quite skilled with the sword, particularly in self-defense. However, he has very little real experience in fighting. Oz likes cute, younger girls and flirts with them frequently. He once wished to marry Sharon when they first met. Oz, himself, thinks of Alice as his precious someone, calling her his “sun”. He believes that Alice is the reason that he can still smile.
Jack tells Oz that he has the “right” or “prerequisite” over Alice’s powers and that a seal won’t restrain Alice’s powers any longer, giving Oz the ability to use B-Rabbit’s power, even without Alice’s permission or Gil’s help. Oz proves it when he is able to stop Alice’s B-Rabbit’s power temporarily on his own; another instance is when Oz is almost kidnapped by the Baskervilles at Lutwidge, and a more recent one is when he was able to summon B-Rabbit’s scythe to fight his assailants in Sablier’s illusion, despite the fact he had never used a scythe before. According to Lotti, Oz was supposed to be the vessel for the sake of hiding the existence of Jack Vessalius and should the vessel be broken, Jack’s existence will be brought to light and the further warping of Abyss’s will, who seeks him, will most probably interfere with the real world. Later, Oz reunites with Gilbert and immediately meets with the person behind Oz’s homicidal nature: Zai Vessalius , his father. it is said that Oz had a desire to destroy everything until Alice stopped him. According to Break, Oz may not be the real Oz Vessalius, as during his birth, Oz’s father took him away: it is suspected he might have done something to him or exchanged him with another baby. This is proven true when it is revealed that his body was Jack’s all along, and that he (Oz) is the true B-rabbit.

Alice

is heroine of the story with a height of 150 cm. Alice first appears as a chain that persuades Oz to form a contract with her in the Abyss. In fact, she is actually the infamous B-Rabbit (Blood-stained Black Rabbit), the most powerful chain in the Abyss. Alice’s goal is to find her lost memories, which plays a major role in the story. In human form, Alice has long dark brown hair with two side plaits. She has a huge appetite and loves meat especially. She is hotheaded and loud-spoken and says what she thinks without regard to the consequences. Despite this, she has a soft side, especially when Oz is involved. She hates when Oz leaves her alone, but to hide it she usually says, “I’m in a contract with you. You are my manservant, and as a manservant, what were you thinking, leaving me behind!?” or she just hits Oz and says, “Shut up”.
It also appears that she cares for Oz’s well-being, that she considers his health when using her powers. She bites his cheeks to make him feel better, copying a picture Sharon showed her thinking it was biting instead of a kiss. Also, in episode 20, she tells Sharon, who threatens her to tell her what she has on her mind, that she felt left out and ignored when Oz went to talk with Break without her and when he was happy to see his sister. Alice senses Oz is upset. Thinking that the biting was still a kiss (sort of), she bites him several times, pushing him to the floor to bite his ear that begins to bleed.
She was in Sablier when the city was dragged into the Abyss. Alice wanted to forget about that event, because it was a very painful one. In her memories we see Jack Vessalius, the hero of 100 years ago. It is revealed that she’s actually Lacie’s daughter. Lacie was impregnated by Levi Baskerville before being cast into the Abyss as a sacrifice for the ceremony of the new ‘Glen’ and Levi’s experiment, to gain the power of the Abyss through a vessel, Lacie’s child. While in the Abyss, Lacie gave birth to ‘twins’, Alice and Alice (Also referred to Alyss by fans to avoid confusion, though it is not official) who would be merged with the Core of the Abyss and called The Will of the Abyss by Levi. Alice is not the real B-Rabbit; Oz is the true B-Rabbit and was originally a stuffed animal that Alice was very close to and kept when imprisoned. After Jack began the Tragedy of Sablier he came to Alice’s tower to ask the Intention of the Abyss for more power. Alice refuses to allow Jack and the Intention to destroy the world and sever the chains and thus commits suicide stabbing herself with a pair of scissors. She only is “alive” in the present timeline because her body fused with B-Rabbit’s power, thus “becoming” B-Rabbit.

Gilbert Nightray

also known as Gil or Raven. He is Oz’s best friend and loyal servant. Oz is his most important person, for whom he is willing to sacrifice anything; this protectiveness is compounded by the fact that he was brainwashed by Miranda Barma to protect Jack Vessalius (and therefore Oz, who is his medium) even if it means killing. When Gil is drunk, he reverts to his fourteen-year-old self, an insecure crybaby. He cares deeply about the hat that Ada gave him. He is a great cook, terrified of cats, unable to quit smoking in eight attempts, and constantly afraid that as Oz grows, he will be left behind.
Gil is shown to have become close to Alice, despite his constant arguing with her. Though at first wanting to kill her. Gil saves Alice when she falls down in a small rockslide later.
Gil was Glen’s servant 100 years ago in order to fulfill his duty of being the next Glen after Oswald, and he is also a Baskerville, due to his ability to be greatly wounded, but not killed. He was nearly killed by Jack and in order to save him, his brother Vincent opened a path to the Abyss. (It is later revealed that Gil was killed in order to serve as Glen’s new vessel, and when Vincent interrupted the ceremony the Tragedy occurred.) He was taken in as a servant by the current Vessalius family fifteen years ago, after he was discovered injured and amnesiac in the Vessalius gardens. He came to be Oz’s closest friend, and was invited to be a part of the boy’s coming-of-age ceremony. During the ceremony, Zwei uses her chain Doldum to control his body and forces him to attack Oz. After he regains consciousness, he recognizes one of the Baskervilles as Oz’s father and when Oz attacks the man with a sword, Gilbert takes the wound and falls unconscious.
Gil remains loyal to Oz during his time in the Abyss. Shortly after the ceremony, he is approached by Xerxes Break who arranges his adoption into the Nightray family in exchange for inside information on the family’s doings. He views this as a betrayal, since the Nightrays are the prime suspects in the assassination of Oz’s mother, but he agrees to join the family when he learns that contracting their chain ‘Raven’ might give him the power to rescue Oz. He trains in gunmanship and eventually kills the Nightray family before the chain deems him worthy to contract with it.
Once he obtains the chain, he takes the name Raven and goes to work for Break as a member of Pandora. When Oz returns from the Abyss, Gil is the first one at his side. Initially, Oz is unaware that ‘Raven’ is Gil, but during the second battle with Zwei his true identity is revealed. Gilbert uses his chain’s power to bind B-Rabbit, keeping Alice in her human form and preventing Oz’s seal from moving when they are not in battle.
It is shown in Retrace 45 that he has always had the right to make the contract with Raven, which leads him to gaining the chain. It is also said that Gilbert had been poisoned on a targeted attack against the Nightrays by a mysterious headhunter. Gil has gotten all of his memories back of Sablier and the Tragedy from 100 years ago, his true master is Glen, whose soul lies within Leo, and Gilbert shot Oz by Glen’s commands, however he broke free and burn down his own arm.

 

Manga Monday- Pandora Hearts

Manga Monday- Pandora Hearts

Pandora Hearts is a shōnen manga series written and illustrated by Jun Mochizuki. Individual chapters were serialized in Monthly GFantasy between May 2006 and March 2015, with bound volumes published by Square Enix. The series ended with twenty-four volumes having been released in Japan. It was originally licensed for an English language release by Broccoli Books, but was later dropped. It was relicensed by Yen Press. The eighth volume of Pandora Hearts was ranked 21st on the Tohan charts between March 24 and 30, 2009, and 19th between March 31 and April 6, 2009. Volume nine was ranked number one between July 27 and August 2.

Plot

Oz is the heir to the Vessalius house, one of the Four Great Dukedoms given excessive power by the country’s royalty. He lives a luxurious life alongside his younger sister Ada and valet and best friend Gilbert. This extravagant lifestyle is only diminished by the constant absence of Oz’s father Xai, who decided Oz and Ada should be raised by their uncle Oscar when they were still babies. When Oz goes to his Coming-of-Age Ceremony, he meets Sharon Rainsworth and her ominous servant Xerxes Break. Everything appears normal until the Coming-of-Age Ceremony rituals are completed and the giant clock that hasn’t worked in a century moves. Suddenly, a group of people in red cloaks known as the Baskervilles proceed to reveal themselves. The Baskervilles say Oz must be dragged into a supernatural prison called Abyss where monsters called Chains live, a place previously believed to have only existed in fairy tales. The Baskervilles then force Oz into the Abyss, claiming his existence to be a sin, although Oz is clueless as to the true meaning behind these words and the desire to acquire it becomes a driving force for the rest of the series.

Trapped in the Abyss, Oz finds out he can make contracts with Chains by drinking their blood. He does so with a Chain named Alice, infamously known as the Bloody Black Rabbit (or B-Rabbit for short), in order to escape the prison. By the time they escape from the Abyss, ten years have already passed. He is taken under the care of Sharon and Break, who he discovers are members of a Chain-research organization called Pandora that was established a century ago after a disaster known as the Tragedy of Sablier (in which the entire city of Sablier fell into the Abyss) by the Four Great Dukedoms. Wanting to understand why his existence is supposedly a sin, Oz helps Sharon and Break in their investigation in regards to the Intention of the Abyss, the ruler of the Abyss. They have the help of Alice and adult Gilbert, who has now been adopted into the Nightray dukedom and made a contract with the family’s chain, Raven. As they investigate, they learn that Alice, Gilbert, and Gilbert’s odd younger brother Vincent were involved with the Tragedy of Sablier. Additionally, they come into contact with the soul of Jack Vessalius, the legendary hero of the Tragedy of Sablier who prevented the entire world from being dragged into the Abyss after such a thing happened to Sablier. Jack was also the one who established Pandora. In the current time, he lay dormant in Oz’s body. Jack reveals that the one behind the Tragedy of Sablier was Glen Baskerville, the head of Baskervilles and his best friend.

Following a meeting with Duke Rufus Barma, Break reveals he became an illegal contractor thirty years prior and has met the Intention of the Abyss, who is in fact Alice’s twin sister. Duke Barma reveals that, according to his ancestor Arthur Barma’s memoirs, Jack has sealed Glen’s soul by placing it within his own mutilated body, split into five sealing stones. Following the destruction of two of the five sealing stones, Oz and Duke Barma trick foreign noble Isla Yura into conducting a second Coming-of-Age Ceremony for the former in his mansion, wherein one of the sealing stones is located. However, in the middle of the party, Yura and his sect start killing the guests in an attempt to reenact the Tragedy of Sablier. Although Oz and his friends manage to stop Yura’s cult from succeeding in their efforts, the sealing stone is destroyed by the Baskervilles and Gilbert’s adoptive younger brother, Elliot Nightray, is killed. This leads to Elliot’s valet Leo being taken away by Vincent, who reveals that Leo holds Glen Baskerville’s soul within him, and thus is the next successor of Baskerville clan. Blaming himself for Elliot’s death, Leo accepts his role as Glen Baskerville in order to destroy the Intention of the Abyss.

The Baskervilles and Pandora clash as Leo attacks the latter. Upon destroying the fourth sealing stone, the fourth seal is revealed to contain Glen’s head rather than Jack’s. Duke Barma then declares he has deciphered an entire code within Arthur Barma’s memoirs, which, once decoded, reveal Jack is actually the one who caused the Tragedy of Sablier. Oz then witnesses Jack’s memories. It is revealed from such that Jack’s motivation for instigating the Tragedy was to merge the world with the Abyss and be reunited with Lacie, who was the younger sister of the previous Glen (originally known as Oswald), as well as Alice and the Intention of the Abyss’s mother. Gilbert is also revealed to be a Baskerville who was originally chosen to be the next Glen a century ago. Following this revelation, Oz learns that he is actually the real B-Rabbit and used to be a sentient but still lifeless black rabbit doll that belonged to Lacie until she left him in the care of the Core of the Abyss, of whom gave him life. During the Tragedy of Sablier, Oz was turned into the most powerful Chain in existence, capable of destroying the world, by the Intention of the Abyss in order to help Jack fulfill his goal of plunging the entire world into the Abyss. Meanwhile, Oswald takes over Leo’s body and decides to go back into the past to kill Lacie before she met Jack, which would prevent the birth of the Intention of the Abyss, Oz, and Jack’s complete slippage of sanity following Lacie’s death, thus averting the Tragedy.

Accepting his real origin, Oz decides to prevent Oswald from changing the past with the help of his friends. They come up with a plan to stop the world from falling into the Abyss without changing the past by destroying the Intention of the Abyss’ body. Oz’s uncle Oscar Vessalius dies on their quest, as well as Break. Traveling back one hundred years into the past during the Tragedy, Alice tries to convince the Core of the Abyss to cut her ties with her twin sister while Oz tries to convince Oswald to reconsider altering the past and focus on helping them stop Jack instead. Alice’s words causes the Core to go berserk out of fear of being left alone, which results with the dimensions distorting even more and Oz and the rest being sent further back into the past, before Oswald and Lacie became Baskervilles. In the end, Oswald can’t bring himself to kill his sister and passes on, returning control to Leo. Using Oz’s illegal contractor seal, they reach the Core of the Abyss and manage to convince the Core to cut her ties with the Intention of the Abyss and restore the world back to normal. Oz and Alice pass away with hopeful dispositions to ensure the safety and security of the world, Gilbert promising them that he will wait for them until they are reincarnated and he can see them again. After the incident, Pandora is disbanded, the Baskervilles establish a new bond with the Core of the Abyss, and Sharon and the rest who have survived move on with their lives. Approximately a century later, Vincent brings the reincarnated Oz and Alice to Gilbert before dying in his brother’s arms. Gilbert and Oz both begin crying upon seeing each other for the first time in a hundred years, and Gilbert happily welcomes him and Alice back.

 

Film Friday- Noragami

Film Friday- Noragami

An anime television series adaptation by Bones aired in Japan beginning from January 5, 2014 to March 23, 2014, with a total of 12 episodes. The second season, entitled Noragami Aragoto aired in Japan from October 2, 2015 to December 25, 2015, with a total of 13 episodes.

Anime

The Noragami television series adaptation is produced by Bones and directed by Kotaro Tamura with character designs by Toshihiro Kawamoto. Prior to the series’ television premiere, its first episode was screened at 2013’s Anime Festival Asia on November 10, 2013. The anime began airing in Japan on January 5, 2014, on Tokyo MX and later on MBS, BS11 and TVA, running for 12 episodes.

Besides the television series, two additional episodes were released on DVDs bundled with limited editions of the 10th and 11th manga volumes, published February 17 and July 17, 2014. Funimation licensed the anime for streaming in North America. Madman Entertainment licensed the anime for distribution in Australia and New Zealand. The opening theme song is “Goya no Machiawase”, performed by Hello Sleepwalkers. The ending theme song is “Heart Realize” with composition by Supercell and performed by Tia. Season two, Noragami Aragoto, has 13 episodes, and began airing on October 2, 2015. The opening theme song is “Kyōran Hey Kids!!” by The Oral Cigarettes, and the ending theme song is “Nirvana” by Tia. The second season’s finale aired on December 25, 2015.

Main characters

Yato  
is a war god who wants to build his own shrine. In the past, he was a god of calamity. He wears a tracksuit and scarf and refers to himself as “Yato God” (Yatogami). He calls himself a “delivery god” and often writes his cell number in public areas in case someone needs his help. He usually charges five yen (about five cents in U.S. currency), which is what Japanese people usually give when praying at a shrine. Yato is gullible and often wastes his money on scams and good-luck charms that allegedly bring happiness. As he “stopped” being a god of calamity due to his dislike of violence, he is forgotten by most humans. This results in Yato developing athazagoraphobia (the fear of being forgotten). Hiyori, a human girl, and Yato’s current Regalia (weapon), Yukine, are the two closest people to him, and he is protective of both. He shares a fatherly relationship with Yukine, calling Yukine his child at one point, and becomes extremely attached to Hiyori; romantic feelings are hinted at. Yato also shares a close relationship with Kofuku, the God of Poverty, who is there for him when he is in need of help. Yato’s actual name is Yaboku, “Yato” being a name that a previous Regalia mistakenly gave him due to a kanji mix-up. He has been using the name ever since.
Hiyori Iki  
is a human girl in her third year (9th grade) of middle school, and a high school first-year (10th grade) starting from chapter 25 of the manga. After saving Yato from a bus accident, she becomes a Half-Phantom, involuntarily falling asleep due to her soul slipping out of her body. She is somehow stuck between the human world and the afterlife, something she asks Yato to fix. Because of this, she starts spending more time with him, and he becomes the closest person to her, to the point where she is able to recognize him by scent. Despite it being her best chance to return to normal, Hiyori refuses to have her bond to Yato cut, as it means she will forget him. It is hinted that she has feelings for Yato, as she feels jealous when he almost drunkenly kisses Bishamon, the God of War. Hiyori shares a sisterly relationship with Yukine, and tutors him when he expresses a desire to learn. Hikyori Iki is also the main character and narrator of the story, especially so in the manga.
Yukine  
is Yato’s current Regalia. His Regalia name is “Sekki”. His Regalia form is a katana. Yukine died at a young age, making him miss normal life as a teenager. Every time he sins in any way, Yato suffers injuries. Even though Yato is his master, Yukine does not really show Yato respect as much as how he actually respects him. After being saved by Hiyori and undergoing an ablution, he becomes more obedient and extremely loyal to Yato, wanting to be a proper Regalia for him. Like Yato, Yukine treasures Hiyori’s existence, and fears that Hiyori will forget them when she grows up. Yukine later evolves into a Blessed Vessel when he saves Yato from certain death, proving his loyalty to him. He takes the shape of twin katanas.

Manga Monday- Noragami

Manga Monday- Noragami

Noragami is a Japanese manga series by Adachitoka. It began serialization in Kodansha’s Monthly Shōnen Magazine in January 2011’s issue. The series has been collected into eighteen tankōbon volumes as of February 2017.

Manga

Noragami started as a manga series, authored by Adachitoka and published by Kodansha. The series premiered in Monthly Shōnen Magazine‘s January 2011 issue, released on December 6, 2010, and has been compiled into seventeen tankōbon volumes between July 15, 2011 and July 15, 2016. The ninth volume was released simultaneously with a limited edition, bundled with a drama CD. Volumes 10 and 11 were released simultaneously with limited editions, each containing an anime episode on DVD. Extra chapters of the series have been published in the spin-off publication, Monthly Shōnen Magazine + since 2011 and as of November 15, 2013, they have been compiled into one volume under the title Noragami ShūishūBoth the main series and spin-off series have been licensed in North America by Kodansha USA, under the title Noragami: Stray God and Noragami: Stray Stories respectively. The first volume of Noragami: Stray God was released on September 2, 2014, with 17 volumes released as of October 25, 2016. The first volume of Noragami: Stray Stories was released in December 2015.

Noragami was the 14th top selling manga series in Japan during the first half of 2014.

Plot

Hiyori Iki is a normal middle school student until she was involved in a bus accident while trying to protect a stranger. This incident causes her soul to frequently slip out of her body, and she becomes aware of the existence of two parallel worlds: the Near Shore, where regular humans and creatures reside, and the Far Shore, where demons and human souls linger. Through her soul, she meets the strange, nameless god without a shrine, Yato. Yato is determined to make a name for himself out there by accepting any wishes for 5 yen, including Hiyori’s to fix her body. Along with Yato’s Regalia — a weapon from a human soul named by the god in question — Yukine, the trio go through many adventures struggling with their friendship, identity and pasts.

 

Film Friday- Flame of Recca

Film Friday- Flame of Recca

Flame of Recca is a manga series written and illustrated by Nobuyuki Anzai, which was adapted into an anime series spanning forty-two episodes by Studio Pierrot. The series has also been adapted into two video games; Flame of Recca: The Game for the Game Boy Advance and Flame of Recca: Final Burning for the PlayStation 2. The anime has since been picked up by Discotek Media who re-released the series on DVD in 2015. Though it begins by following the same basic storyline, the Flame of Recca anime series ends right after the Ura Butō Satsujin ends, while the manga goes on to include the subplot involving the Tendō Jigoku. The anime also omits certain characters from the story, and several of the characters’ physical appearances are slightly different from the manga.

Anime

Flame of Recca was adapted into a 42-episode anime series produced by Studio Pierrot, and aired in Japan from July 19, 1997 to July 10, 1998 on Fuji Television. Flame of Recca was also aired on the satellite network Animax in Japan and Asia. Pony Canyon has released the entire series on DVD and laserdisc, while Geneon released it in two DVD boxsets on April 22 and June 24, 2005 in Japan. In North America, Viz Media released the series in ten separate DVD volumes between October 26, 2004 and January 9, 2007.

There are several notable differences between the anime and manga, such as the character designs (e.g. Fūko has purple-violet hair in the anime, but has brown hair in the manga) and in the storyline itself (e.g. In the anime, Yanagi’s healing powers are first revealed when she heals Recca after he gets injured while protecting her and a child from being crushed under metal pipes, but in the manga, Yanagi heals Recca when he gets injured while protecting her from a group of male students who were forcing her to go with them). The anime was aired in the Philippines by GMA Network in 1999.

Protagonists

Recca Hanabishi 

the primary protagonist of the series, is a teenager obsessed with ninjas and anything related to ninjas. Recca was born the second son of Ōka, the leader of the Hokage ninja clan that existed over 400 years ago. Recca’s older half-brother, Kurei, was supposed to be the heir to the leadership because he was the eldest and was born with the ability to control fire, but Recca also exhibited the same abilities as an infant, and is declared the true heir of the Hokage leadership. In an attempt to save him during the slaughter of the Hokage ninja clan, his mother (Kagerō) used a forbidden technique that opened a portal that would transport him into the future, where the Flame of Recca storyline begins. Recca’s flame power is derived from eight Flame Dragons named Saiha, Nadare, Homura, Setsuna, Madoka, Rui, Kokuu, and Resshin. Recca’s powers were apparently so strong that they had to be sealed with a wrist guard. In the end, the eighth dragon Resshin (actually Recca’s father Ōka) reveals that Recca’s flame has no original form (something every Flame Master’s flame is supposed to have, such as Ōka’s and Kurei’s phoenix flame), thus Recca is the true cursed child, fated to end the Hokage. Ōka reveals that if Recca becomes the ninth dragon, he would become “a stupid, useless dragon with no ability whatsoever, a waste of space inside Kurei”. After the destruction of the Tendo Jigoku, every remaining madogu disintegrated to naught, as well as Recca and Kurei’s flame powers.His appearance varies slightly between the anime and manga, as in the manga, his hair has a red highlight and bright blue eyes, and in the anime his hair is a dull blue highlight and his eyes are a similar color.

Yanagi Sakoshita 

is a teenage girl gifted with the innate ability to heal any kind of physical injury, and Recca immediately offers to serve her as her loyal ninja after seeing her compassion when she healed a severely injured puppy in a local park (in the anime series, she heals Recca after a pile of metal pipes collapsed on top of him). She is the prime objective of the series’ main antagonist, Kōran Mori, as he believes that her healing powers will help him attain eternal life. In the manga, it is revealed that she is the reincarnation of Sakura-hime, the daughter of Oyakata and princess of Sawaki clan, who lived over 400 years before the series’ actual story-line.

Fūko Kirisawa

a tomboyish teenage girl, is Recca’s childhood friend who has always aspired to defeat him in battle so that he would serve her as her ninja. She initially gets irritated by the fact that Recca chose to become Yanagi’s ninja just because he wanted to. For this reason, she decides to accept the aid of Kagerō, who offers to lend her a powerful madōgu that controls wind called Fūjin in order to enable her to defeat Recca. In actuality, Kagerō implanted a stone in the Fūjin that allowed her to brainwash Fūko, but Recca manages to defeat Fūko and destroy the sphere. Fūko ends up being friends with both Yanagi and Recca after the incident, and she also keeps the Fūjin and wields it throughout the rest of the series.Fūko is often described as tomboyish by other characters, and is often laughed at or teased when she shows or says something sensitive or feminine. Fūko greatly respects human life, and hates those who take it for granted. This characteristic is shown on several occasions, the first being when one of her opponents, Fujimaru, states that he would do anything and kill anyone – even women and children – to achieve victory. Fūko’s character design varies in the adaptations of the series. While she has brown hair and green eyes in the manga and both of the Flame of Recca video games, she has red violet hair and blue eyes in the anime series.

Antagonist

Kurei 

is Recca’s older half brother. He was born in 1571 (four years prior to Recca’s birth), and is the firstborn son of Flame Master Ōka and his mistress Reina. He was initially recognized as the next leader of the Hokage clan due to his innate flame powers, but the Hokage elders label him as a cursed child when his younger half-brother, Recca Hanabishi, also exhibits the same powers. Kurei was supposed to be killed in order to save the clan, but due to Kagerō’s intervention, Kurei and his mother are exiled instead. Kurei then eventually attempts to kill Recca, and ends up imprisoned for his crime. He eventually escapes the prison when it is destroyed during Oda Nobunaga’s raid on the Hokage village, and he jumps into the time portal Kagerō opened in order to save Recca by sending him into the future.Kurei is then found and adopted by Tsukino Mori, the wife of one of the series’ main antagonists, Kōran Mori. Kōran raises Kurei to become a “machine”, repeatedly telling him that he does not need human emotions and that he should just throw them away. Upon seeing how much Kurei loved his mother, Kōran has her transferred to a different house and keeps her under house arrest. When Kurei ends up falling in love with Kurenai, Kōran Mori’s adopted daughter, Kōran has her killed. This causes Kurei to despise his adoptive father, but since Kōran is holding his mother hostage, he obeys Kōran’s orders. Kurei is the leader of the Uruha, a group of skilled warriors hired to serve Kōran Mori and to assist Kurei in missions that Kōran orders him to undertake. Like his father and his half-brother, Kurei has the innate power to produce and manipulate fire. The main form of his flame is the Phoenix, and is shown to be of a different color compared to Recca’s (Kurei’s flames are purple in the anime series and a different shade of red in the Flame of Recca video games). Kurei has the ability to absorb souls into his flame, and use them to produce humanoid flames that fight for him and obey his commands. The first time Kurei absorbed a soul into his flame was when he absorbed Kurenai’s soul right after Kōran killed her. The second instance of this was when he absorbed the soul of a loyal member of the Uruha named Jisho (this is not shown in neither the anime nor the video games). His power is not limited to absorbing just one soul at a time, as shown by his absorption of several souls after an opponent slaughters many men in the latter part of the manga.Kurei is also capable of executing non-flame based techniques such as Wakemi, a technique that allows him to produce multiple, solid duplicates of himself that possess his powers and skills. In the last part of the manga, he is shown to be able to use the Jikuryūri, a technique that allows its user to open a portal in time.

 

Manga Monday- Flame of Recca

Manga Monday- Flame of Recca

Flame of Recca is a manga series written and illustrated by Nobuyuki Anzai, which was adapted into an anime series spanning forty-two episodes by Studio Pierrot. The manga was serialized in Weekly Shōnen Sunday from 1995 to 2002. The 329 chapters that composed the series were compiled into 33 tankōbon volumes by Shogakukan. Both the anime and manga were licensed for North American distribution in English by Viz Media.  Jason Thompson, author of Manga: The Complete Guide, described the manga version of Flame of Recca as “polished and quick-paced”, and that it “reads like a more carefully plotted, more extreme version of YuYu Hakusho.” Patricia Duffield, a columnist for Animerica Extra, felt the story and artwork continuously evolved with characters and their unique weapons. “Although the series seems to have a tendency toward male fan service, Flame of Recca can be as enjoyable for gals as it is for guys.” Duffield concluded, “If lots of ninja action with supernatural flair interests you, give Flame of Recca a try.”

Manga

The Flame of Recca manga was serialized in Weekly Shōnen Sunday from 1995 to 2002, with a total of 329 chapters. The series was compiled into 33 tankōbon (collected volumes) and was published by Shogakukan from September 18, 1995 to April 18, 2002. Shōnen Sunday also released the manga in 17 wideban volumes and, beginning in 2010, as part of its Comic Bunko label. The manga was licensed for North American distribution in English by Viz Media and United Kingdom distribution in English by Gollancz Manga. Viz released all 33 volumes from July 30, 2003 to November 10, 2009, while Gollancz released ten volumes between March 6 and November 28, 2006. Viz did not censor nudity in their publications of the manga, but starting from volume 20, the female characters’ nipples have been removed.

Plot

Flame of Recca follows the story of a teenage boy named Recca Hanabishi, who is interested in ninja and claims to be one himself. He often gets into fights because he made it publicly known that the person who manages to defeat him will earn his services as a loyal ninja. Despite this, he eventually pledges his loyalty and services as a ninja to Yanagi Sakoshita, a girl with the innate ability to heal any wound/injury, because of her kindness and compassion. Recca soon discovers that he possesses the innate ability to control/manipulate flames, and eventually learns that he is actually the son of the sixth generation leader of the Hokage, a ninja clan that was wiped out by Oda Nobunaga in 1576, roughly 400 years before the series’ present day.

The Hokage ninjas wielded mystical objects called madōgu, which are referred to as “psychic devices” or “mystical weapons” in the English versions of the series. Madōgu grant their users special abilities, such as allowing their users to manipulate certain elements (as in the case of the Fūjin, which allows its wielder to manipulate the element of wind) and enhancing their user’s strength/skills (as in the case of the Dosei no Wa, which increases its user’s physical strength and the Idaten, which increases its user’s running speed). Oda Nobunaga had invaded the Hokage in 1576 for the purpose of acquiring these weapons, and the series’ main antagonist, Kōran Mori, is searching for a madōgu that will grant him eternal life. Recca and his friends become entangled in Mori’s quest for eternal life as he attempts to kidnap Yanagi, believing that her healing powers will help him achieve immortality. This leads them to join the Ura Butō Satsujin, a tournament wherein the warriors that wield madōgu gather to battle each other. After winning the tournament, Recca and his teammates discover that Mori was on his way to acquire the Tendō Jigoku, a madōgu said to grant its user eternal life, and once again attempt to stop him.

 

 

Film Friday- Get Backers

Film Friday- Get Backers

The manga of Get Backers was adapted into an animated television series in 2002. The Studio Deen production aired on the Tokyo Broadcasting System from October 5, 2002 until September 20, 2003, for a complete run of 49 episodes. It was also dubbed in English and broadcast by the anime television network Animax across its respective networks worldwide. The series was licensed for an English-language release in North America by TokyoPop, which released 27 volumes between February 10, 2004 and December 2, 2008. It has since lost the license to the property, and all existing releases are now out-of-print.

Ban Midou

is one of the main protagonists in GetBackers. His name comes from his mother’s surname “Midou” and the “Ban” from Japanese word for Savage. The “ban” can mean “barbarian” or “uncouth/vulgar”. This is the result of the first meeting between Paul and Ban. When der Kaiser first introduced the infant Ban to Paul, Ban kicked Paul in the face while being held by him, causing Paul to insist that the Ban of Yaban suited the child perfectly. der Kaiser agreed.

Known variously as “The Man with the Evil Eye” and “The Genius of Battles”, he is the “B” in the GetBackers. He is 18 years old in the manga and 21 years old in the anime. He is one quarter German is the grandchild of the “Last Witch of the 20th Century”. Ban is a brother-like figure to Himiko Kudo after she came to terms with her brother’s death, and later it is revealed in volume 38 of the manga that Ban is actually related to her by blood through the Witch Queen.

In the GetBackers duo, he is the one who thinks of the plans for their moves. Initially, Ginji Amano was seen to be a sidekick to him (in fact, when they first formed their partnership, Ban insisted that Ginji was only his sidekick), but as the story progressed, Ginji gradually held his own in their missions, and Ban acknowledged him as an equal.

Ban is very intelligent, having studied fighting techniques, science, history, music, art and magic from a very young age as a result of being hunted in Europe by shamans during his childhood. More often surprises everyone with his knowledge and abilities, such as being able to play the violin. He also bears a striking resemblance to his father. In fact, in the arcs where his hair is “down” (“Venus de Milo” and “Kiryuudo” arcs), he looks like der Kaiser during his Getbacker days with Paul. Another trait which both father and son share is that while they may appear cold and ruthless on the surface, they are actually very warm and caring towards their friends.

Ban inherited his powers from his grandmother. Ban utilizes two main abilities. His primary technique is the Evil Eye, which allows him to force anyone he makes eye contact with watch a one-minute-long illusion. It should only be used three times per day and cannot be used on the same person again for the next 24 hours. Furthermore, while the illusion only lasts for one minute, should Ban will it, the one affected by the Jagan can be placed inside a time-warp zone via the illusion created by the technique, meaning that to them, one minute in real life could last up to several hours in the Jagan’s influence. It is rare for Ban to use the Evil Eye to defeat his opponents, preferring to use it to aid in the retrieval process or to give clients happy/nightmarish dreams; however, he has been shown to use it in defeating Takuma Fudou’s insight during the blank second.

If the user were to use the Jagan a fourth time within a 24-hour period they would receive a penalty for using it. After the fourth use the user disappears both from the physical world and from the memories of all who know him. With this in mind, Ban requested one final duel with Akabane Kurodou. After an intense struggle, the two manage to strike each other, causing Ban to collapse and Akabane to disappear. However, Akabane had not died, as assumed, but instead, implanted a surgical scalpel into Ban’s chest as a “final favor”, given to Ban for allowing Akabane to see his own limits. Akabane later explained that because having Ban disappear would be a pity, he attempted to fool the “Archive” by faking Ban’s death and delaying Ban’s disappearance from using his fourth Jagan just long enough for Ginji to reach Babylon City and resolve everything, thus saving Ban from disappearing.

His second ability is the Snakebite. Because he is a direct descendant of the Witch clan, and was born under the star of Asclepius, he possesses incredible superhuman strength, which gives him a gripping force of 200 kilograms in each hand. It is also shown that he is strong enough to break open the doors of an armored steel truck and punch hard enough to create large craters in the ground or break walls, occasionally even collapsing multistory buildings. Ban can augment the strength of his Snakebite by reciting a certain chant in order to draw power from Asclepius, with the resulting force being sufficient enough to devastate even the most formidable of opponents with just a single blow. The full extent of the Asclepius curse upon Ban is expressed through his entire right arm degenerating into a grotesque state not unlike a demon’s limb, granting Ban even greater power but at the risk of losing himself to his savage instincts. Later Ban manages to transcend the Asclepius curse and draw out his full potential on his own, which is reflected by the manifestation of a single angel wing behind his right shoulder.

In the “Get Back the Lost Time” arc, his skills grow by leaps and bounds due to his learning abilities. Against Natsuhiko, he manages to execute a new move, “Snake Kill”, using his left hand.

Anime News Network praised the style of the Jagan in the manga to be a “horrifying nightmare”. The Tokyo Pop translation of the Ban Midou dialogues has been criticized for making him sound like a gangster.

Ginji Amano

Ginji Amano is the “G” in the GetBackers. He is 18 years old in the manga. Ginji was formerly the leader of a gang called “The VOLTS” in the Limitless Fortress, the fearsome Lightning Emperor.

He received the title Lightning Emperor because of his ability to control electricity. This control grants him several unique abilities such as amazing regenerative power and the ability to become a human magnet and battery. Despite Ginji’s dark past, his demeanor is one of an unassuming, energetic, and friendly boy with a strong sense of justice. He makes friends easily, often without trying and is trusting and open to an almost naive extent. However, when exposed to remnants of his past, he has a tendency to revert to his darker “Lightning Emperor” persona. For comical purposes, he also turns droopy and super deformed, most likely designed after a Tarepanda. He’s frequently beaten up by Ban for doing stupid things. As a child, his guardian was Takeru Teshimine, then ruler of the Limitless Fortress. Ginji founded the “VOLTS”, a gang led by The Lightning Emperor, and “The Four Kings of the VOLTS” to protect the Infinity Fortress from the monsters of the Beltline. During the era of the VOLTS, only one man (Midou Ban) is known to have defeated the Lightning Emperor, though not in a fight of physical strength. All Ban did was show him that he was causing pain to many. While they were fighting, Lightning Emperor summoned lightning which resulted in a huge blast. Though Ban escaped from the blast, he was able to see the infinite energy flowing in the Lightning Emperor, which made it impossible to beat him. Then, Ban remembered that the Lightning Emperor only appeared after Ban attacked one of his friends. He then showed him that though the Lightning Emperor said that he would protect everyone, he himself killed many since many were caught up in the blast. After seeing the devastation he caused, the Lightning Emperor shrieked and expelled all the power within him, turning back into Ginji. Ban noticed that he has changed and did not deliver the killing blow to Ginji as he sat in front of him, his head bowed and crying.

Little is known of his past until the last volume of the manga where it is revealed that his mother, who Teshimine told Ginji was waiting for him in Babylon City, had created the world in which the GetBackers live. Her reason for doing this was that in the real world (Babylon City), Ginji had died as a child. Unbearably sad, she considered cloning him, but realized that it would not be the same child, she created a back-up of the world where he could live and grow.

When transformed into the Lightning Emperor, Ginji glows with a brilliant light and has bolts of electricity flowing around him. Although sharing the same body as that of Ginji, the Lightning Emperor is the polar opposite of the happy-go-lucky Ginji; his features harden and he becomes merciless towards almost anyone. He first came into being when Ginji was a young boy, as the Beltline Monsters invaded the lower levels of the Limitless Fortress. Ginji and a friend were attempting to escape from the hunters when Ginji’s friend was struck by an arrow. The whole invasion force was annihilated in an instant. From that point on, whenever Ginji is confronted with a difficult situation, emotionally or physically, the Lightning Emperor appears to make everything that troubles Ginji disappear. However, this ultimately causes more pain for the peaceful Ginji, as death is the last thing he wants.

In the “Get Back the Lost Time” arc, after the Lightning Emperor was successfully able to defeat the Voodoo King, it is revealed that the Lightning Emperor would never appear again as his reason for existing was over. The Lightning Emperor, who was born from the synchronization of Ginji’s rage and Mugenjou’s power, existed to defeat the person whose purpose was disrupting the plans of the “Archive” (the Voodoo King). His purpose was to protect the world without judgment from Good or Evil.

The source of the Lightning Emperor’s power is the limitless energy currents flowing through the Limitless Fortress, and as such, he draws as much power from them as he needs. Sometimes, though, this can put the Infinity Fortress in a bad situation if the Lightning Emperor calls for more power in a single instant than the tower is capable of producing. For this reason, he is dangerous to the “Brain Trust” in Babylon City who possess the “Archive” (the sum total of human knowledge past, present and future) as he could potentially erase the “Archive” if he blacked out the Limitless Fortress. Another reason why Ginji/the Lightning Emperor is so dangerous inside the Limitless Fortress is because his existence is “random” in the Babylon City Archives. This means his existence was not foretold and therefore his existence inside the Limitless Fortress changes all the prophecies made by the Brain Trust. The reason for this most likely has to do with his mother.

 

Manga Monday- Get Backers

Manga Monday- Get Backers

GetBackers is a Japanese manga series written by Yuya Aoki and illustrated by Rando Ayamine. The series was serialized in Kodansha’s Weekly Shōnen Magazine from 1999 until 2007, totaling 39 volumes. The plot follows the “GetBackers”, a group that retrieves anything that was lost. The team is primarily composed of Ban Mido, a man born with the illusionary technique “Evil Eye”, and Ginji Amano the former leader of a gang called “The VOLTS”, a powerful group in the dangerous territory called the Infinity Fortress in Shinjuku.

Manga

The GetBackers manga series is written by Yuya Aoki and illustrated by Rando Ayamine. The series was serialized and published by Kodansha’s Weekly Shōnen Magazine from 1999 in its 17th issue until its 12th issue from 2007, totaling twelve story arcs with the name of “Act” and a short number of side stories labelled as “Interlude” and “Birth”. The manga consists of 39 tankōbon with the first released on August 17, 1999, and the last one on April 17, 2007, while some of the last were also released in special editions. On February from 2009, Kodansha published a one-shot chapter from the series in their Magazine Special journal. An artbook of the manga titled G/B was released on March 15, 2005 by Kodansha. Additionally, a manga guidebook titled GetBackers The Last Piece was released on April 17, 2007 containing information about the series’ plot, characters, and popularity polls.

GetBackers is licensed for an English language release in North America by Tokyopop, who first announced it in the Anime Expo 2004 in July 2003. Tokyopop divided the manga in two parts: GetBackers featuring the first twenty-five and GetBackers: Infinity Fortress the following ones. GetBackers was published from February 10, 2004, to July 7, 2008. However, only the first two volumes of Infinity Fortress were released. On August 31, 2009, Tokyopop announced that they would not be completing the series as their licenses with Kodansha expired and Kodansha required that they immediately stop publication of all previously licensed series, including GetBackers. Because of this, the series is now considered to be out-of-print.

Plot

The series tells the story of Ginji Amano and Ban Mido, a pair of super powered individuals known as the “GetBackers”. The duo operates a freelance repossession service out of one of the seedier areas of Shinjuku, Tokyo. For a fee, they will recover any lost or stolen item for a client with “an almost 100% success rate”. The GetBackers’ job often leads them into bizarre and dangerous situations in order to “get back what shouldn’t be gone”. Their targets range from lost video games to misplaced components of an atomic bomb. The plot mostly revolves around their adventures, often complicated by the pair’s convoluted, individual pasts and a mysterious place known as the Infinity Fortress.

A conglomeration of disused, condemned buildings clustered together to form a self-contained habitat, Limitless Fortress is subdivided into three specific tiers – Lower Town, the Beltline and Babylon City. Lower Town is the lowest in altitude, with several layers extending below ground level. The Beltline, the most dangerous area of The Limitless Fortress, is ruled by Der Kaiser, Ban’s father. Babylon City, the upper most level of the Limitless Fortress, is said to be where the Brain Trust resides, and is the home of Ginji’s mother. In actuality, Babylon City is what one might consider the real world, with everything else being a virtual reality creation. Only those who have won the Ogre Battle may enter Babylon City and when that happens, they can change the world as they see fit. Both Ban and Ginji go to the Fortress with Ban wishing to rescue a kidnapped Himiko from Kagami, and Ginji finding a possibility to meet his mother. Going to the Beltline, the GetBackers encounter various warriors taking orders from a being known as Voodoo King from Babylon City. The Voodoo King seeks to obtain three “keys” which will help him unlock the gates from Babylon City sealed by Ban’s grandmother several years ago. After finding the three keys: Shido’s chimera spirit, Himiko’s mirror and the GetBackers, the Voodoo King is faced by Ginji, Thunder Emperor alter-ego attacks him in a clash which destroys the Voodoo King and making Raitei disappear forever as he existed to balance the scales. With Voodoo King gone, Raitei’s purpose was fulfilled and he disappeared forever. Following this, both Ban and Ginji face each other in Ogre Battle with Ban giving up, impressed with Ginji’s will. Ginji goes to Babylon City where he meets his mother from a parallel universe, who explains how she created the Fortress and its surrounding world. Following a discussion between the two of them, the Fortress’ world remains unchanged except that the virtual people living become real beings. Ban and Ginji continue their retrieval job, ending the series when requested to go on a mission that will lead them to meet Ban’s mother.

The plot of the anime adaptation of GetBackers follows the manga’s closely until the first season’s ending. The second season features various stand alone episodes focused in the GetBackers’ missions, while also two story arcs, the second ending the anime series with an open ending.

 

Film Friday- The Promised Neverland

Film Friday- The Promised Neverland

An anime television series adaptation will premiere in January 2019 in the Noitamina programming block.

Characters-

Emma 
Emma is the main character of the series and one of the oldest children living at Grace Field House. Like Ray and Norman, she is 11-years-old and consistently gets perfect scores during their daily exams. She is identified by her ID number 63194 and known for her ample optimism as well as her capable athleticism.
Upon discovering the truth of the orphanage, Emma teams up with Norman and Ray to escape the house. Her strong sense of selflessness insists that every one escape together, even if most of their siblings are below 6-years-old, an aim that Ray deems crazy and plain reckless.
Ray 
Ray is one of the oldest children living at Grace Field House and, like Emma and Norman, is 11-years-old and consistently gets perfect scores during their daily exams. He is identified by his ID number 81194 and known for being an avid reader with high intellectual abilities, blunt skepticism and cunning.
Being the only biological child of their caretaker and “Mama” Isabella, he did not experience childhood amnesia, confirming his suspicions about the existence of demons and true nature of the house later when he was 6-years-old. Ray becomes Isabella’s spy in exchange for goods and the promise that him, Emma and Norman could live to the fullest of their lives, pledging to use the remaining 6 years of his life to orchestrate a plan that would lead to his two best friends finding out the truth themselves. After a confrontation from Norman, he becomes the children’s trump card just as Isabella betrays him. Although initially unwilling to accept Emma’s unrealistic goal of escaping with every child, he vows to never give up on them after their escape succeeds.
Norman 
Norman is one of the oldest orphans living at Grace Field House and, like Ray and Emma, is 11-years-old and consistently gets perfect scores during their daily exams. He is identified by his ID number 22194 and known for being a genius strategist and planner, as well as unbeatable at the game of tag.
He discovers the truth of the orphanage with Emma and teams up with Ray to devise a plan to escape. While he knows leaving with every child in the house is near to impossible, his love for Emma pushes him to continue trying. As the most intelligent out of the three, he is the first to find out Ray’s true identity as Isabella’s spy and prepare various back-up plans and escape routes. After Ray is betrayed by Isabella, Norman is forced to be shipped before his 12th birthday, accepting his fate of inevitable death to deceive her and let the rest of the children escape.

Mama/Isabella 
Known to the orphanage’s children as their “Mama”, Isabella is a 31-years-old young woman who takes care of everyone there. Prior to being installed into her current position, she was raised in a similar orphanage and had an ID number of 73584. While appearing extremely loving and affectionate to the children, she actually very manipulative, cunning, and shows much detachment to their tragic fate.

Manga Monday- The Promised Neverland

Manga Monday- The Promised Neverland

The Promised Neverland is a Japanese manga series written by Kaiu Shirai and illustrated by Posuka Demizu. It has been serialized in Weekly Shōnen Jump since August 1, 2016 with the individual chapters collected and published by Shueisha into eight tankōbon volumes as of January 2018. The story follows a group of orphaned children in their escape plan from a farm. Viz Media licensed the manga in North America and serialized The Promised Neverland in their digital Weekly Shonen Jump magazine.

Set in year 2045, Emma is an 11-year-old orphan living in Grace Field House, a small orphanage housing her and her 37 siblings. Life had never been better; with food that tasted gourmet, plush beds, snow-white uniforms, the love of their “Mom” and caretaker Isabella, and the litany of daily exams that Emma always aced with her two best friends Ray and Norman. The orphans are basically allowed to do whatever they want, except to venture out of the compounds or the gate that connects the house to the outside world.

On a fateful night, another orphan named Conny is sent away to be adopted, but Emma and Norman follow her after noticing that she had left her stuffed rabbit toy Bernie back at the house. Sneaking out, they find Conny dead and the truth of the existence of this supposed orphanage to be a farm where human children are raised as food for demonic creatures. Worst still, Isabella is in allegiance with the demons, ripping away at everything the two ever thought they knew. Determined to break out of Grace Field House, Norman and Emma partner up with Ray to peel away at the façade of the farm and find a way to escape with all their other siblings.

Kaiu Shirai and Posuka Demizu launched The Promised Neverland in issue 34 of Shueisha’s shōnen manga magazine Weekly Shōnen Jump on August 1, 2016. It is Shirai and Demizu second collaboration; their first series was Popy no Negai. On July 25, 2016, Viz Media announced that they would digitally publish the first three chapters of the series on Weekly Shonen Jump magazine. Thereafter, they will publish the manga’s new chapters simultaneously with the Japanese release. The first printed volume in North America was released on December 5, 2017.

The manga was nominated for the 10th Manga Taishō awards in January 2017, and gets 43 points from the “Executive Committee” of Manga Taishō awards and it was also nominated for the 11th edition of the Manga Taishō awards in 2018 and it received 26 points in total. As of August 2017, the manga had 1.5 million in print. By October 2017, the number had increased to 2.1 million. As of April 4, 2018, the first 8 volumes had 4.2 million copies in print. Anime News Network’s Rebecca Silverman enjoyed the first manga volume and gave it a A-, saying, “Tense pacing, interesting literary connections, art and story work well together, strong plot and foreshadowing.” In January 2018, the manga won the 63rd Shogakukan Manga Award in the Shōnen category.

As of May 28, 2018, the manga had 5 million copies in print worldwide.