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Manga Monday- Overlord

Manga Monday- Overlord

Overlord is a Japanese light novel series written by Kugane Maruyama and illustrated by so-bin. It began serialization online in 2010, before being acquired by Enterbrain. Thirteen volumes have been published since July 30, 2012. A manga adaptation by Satoshi Ōshio, with art by Hugin Miyama, began serialization in Kadokawa Shoten’s manga magazine Comp Ace from November 26, 2014. Both the light novels and the manga are licensed in North America by Yen Press, with a release date of November 8, 2016.

Reception

In June 2015, prior to the release of the anime and manga, the light novel series had about 600,000 copies in print in Japan with eight volumes. By August 1, 2015, the light novel and manga series had a total of 1 million copies in circulation in Japan. On August 4, a 600,000-copy reprint of the novels was announced. As of August 20, 2015, the nine-volume Overlord light novel series and two-volume manga series have, together, more than 1.5 million copies in circulation in Japan. As of September 18, 2015, Overlord light novel and manga has over 2 million copies in circulation. As of May 2016, the Overlord light novel series had 2.5 million copies in print. Overlord has since been named the top-selling light novel series of 2015. As of April 2018, the light novel and manga combined had over 7 million copies in print.

The light novel ranked first in 2017 in Takarajimasha’s annual light novel guide book Kono Light Novel ga Sugoi!, in the tankōbon category. It ranked fourth in 2018.

In reviewing the anime adaptation, Kotaku called the Overlord anime a “magnificent power fantasy” which “brings up a very relatable theme for anyone who has played an MMORPG before.” However, a review by Monsters and Critics claimed that “fans were not too happy with the CGI animation” produced by studio Madhouse for the third season and the “biggest disappoint was Overlord Season 3 Episode 12, which animated the epic scene showing the Dark Youngs.”

Plot

In the year 2126, a Dive Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game or DMMORPG called Yggdrasil was released. It stands out among all other DMMORPGs due to its unusually high ability for the player to interact with the game. After an intense 12-year run the game servers are about to be shut down. Within the game exists a guild, Ainz Ooal Gown, once consisting of 41 members and credited as one of the strongest guilds in the game. Now only 4 of the members remain, the other 37 having quit the game. Of those 4 only one, an elder lich character named Momonga, continues to play as the guild leader and maintaining their headquarters, The Great Tomb of Nazarick. He invites the remaining guild members but of those only one appears and only for a short while before leaving. While saddened by this, he accepts the reality that his friends have their other lives (both lives are real) to take care of and decides to stay logged in until the servers shut down.

When the shut-down time arrives, however, Momonga finds that the game hasn’t vanished. Instead it appears as if Yggdrasil has been recreated as its own reality along with its various NPCs having been brought to life while Momonga has been trapped in the form of his game avatar, leaving him unable to use the normal player functions, such as General Message, or even to log out. With no other option, Momonga sets out to learn if anyone from the real world is also in this new world with him. Taking on the name of Ainz Ooal Gown, a message to any other players, Momonga begins exploring the world in an attempt to figure out what has happened while searching for anyone or anything that could help him solve this mystery, while ensuring the safety of Nazarick.

 

Manga Monday- The Disastrous Life of Saiki K.

Manga Monday- The Disastrous Life of Saiki K.

The Disastrous Life of Saiki K. is a Japanese gag manga series written and illustrated by Shūichi Asō. The series began serialization in Shueisha’s Weekly Shōnen Jump from June 2012. An anime television adaptation by J.C.Staff and Egg Firm aired from July 4, 2016 to December 28, 2018. A live-action film directed by Yuichi Fukuda and starring Kento Yamazaki at Columbia Pictures (Sony Pictures Entertainment Japan) and Asmik Ace was released on October 21, 2017.

The series began serialization in Shueisha’s Weekly Shonen Jump magazine on May 14, 2012. The first collected tankōbon volume was published on September 4, 2012, with 25 volumes released as of April 2018. The series ended serialization on February 26, 2018. Shueisha later revealed that a 4-panel sequel would begin serialization on March 5, 2018. Asō also published a one-shot manga in the first summer 2018 issue of Shueisha’s Jump Giga on May 25, and another chapter on July 26, 2018.

Saiki has had many crossovers with other Weekly Shōnen Jump manga characters from other Weekly Shōnen Jump works such as Gin Tama and Assassination Classroom in which he and Koro-sensei has had an ongoing rivalry going over Irumanju as seen as a bonus or extra in chapters 40 and 62.

Plot

Kusuo Saiki is a high school student who was born with all manner of psychic abilities, including telepathy, psychokinesis, teleportation, and more. Despite having all these powers, Saiki faces all kinds of hardships and tries to avoid attention as much as possible. The story follows Saiki as he attempts to secretly use his powers to live a normal high school life while dealing with his less than ordinary classmates at P.K. Academy.

Characters

Saiki family

Kusuo Saiki
is a high school student who was born with all manner of psychic abilities despite having very ordinary biological parents. Because of the misery that comes from the attention he receives as a psychic, Kusuo desires a normal, plain life, keeping average grades and performance in sports activities. He uses telepathy to read people’s minds, but he can also share telepathy with others. His other abilities include telekinesis, levitation, x-ray vision, clairvoyance, astral projection, pyrokinesis, mind control (convincing someone that certain things in the world are normal, or that they are seeing someone else’s image), psychometrics, and invisibility.He can teleport things, but has to replace the item with something of equal value. He can sometimes pick up other psychic abilities temporarily like Toritsuka’s ability to see ghosts. He has dark pink hair, with two antennae on his head that people think are hair ornaments, but they actually regulate his constantly growing powers that would otherwise go out of control and destroy things as well as cause global catastrophes. He can transform into animals or into a girl that he names Kusuko. Kusuo wears glasses so that his gaze doesn’t turn someone to stone. His favorite snack is coffee jelly. He is vulnerable to bugs, especially cockroaches, because he cannot read their minds and predict their actions.

Kuniharu Saiki
Kusuo’s father, who has to suck up to his employers so much that he has gained a taste for licking shoes. He works as an editor for a manga publishing company that appears to be a knock-off of Shueisha.

 

 

Kurumi Saiki
Kusuo’s mother whom he states is “the one who keep him from turning into dark side” because of her kindness, but can be scary when needed that Kusuo won’t be able to defy her. She is allergic to cats. Her maiden name is also Saiki. She can be rather naive and air-headed at times.

 

 

Kusuo’s grandparents
are Kusuo’s maternal grandparents. Kumagoro has a classic tsundere personality, that is, he is hard on the outside, but soft on the inside. He is very fond of his daughter, but dislikes his son-in-law, often beating him up or sending him away to run errands. He wants to get to know his grandson better.

Kumi 
acts fairly young for her age, with her choice of fashionable clothes and her gyaru (gal) speech. In the anime they were voiced by Koichi Yamadera and Rie Tanaka who were a real-life married couple at the time.

 

 

Kusuke Saiki
is Kusuo’s older brother by two years. He is a super genius who invents devices and machines, but lacks psychic abilities and thus always loses in any sort of competition with his brother. When he was 14, he moved to England where he has been a doctoral candidate at Cambridge University. He invents a “telepath canceler” so that Kusuo cannot read his thoughts. After graduating from university, he moves in with his grandparents.

 

Manga Monday- Toriko

Manga Monday- Toriko

Toriko is a Japanese manga series written and illustrated by Mitsutoshi Shimabukuro. It was serialized in Weekly Shōnen Jump from May 19, 2008 to November 21, 2016, with the chapters collected into 43 tankōbon volumes by Shueisha. It follows the adventures of Toriko, a Gourmet Hunter, as he searches for rare, diverse foods to complete a full-course meal. On his journey, he is accompanied by a timid chef who wants to improve his skills.

Manga

Written and illustrated by Mitsutoshi Shimabukuro, Toriko was serialized in the manga anthology Weekly Shōnen Jump from May 19, 2008 to November 21, 2016. The 396 individual chapters were collected and published into 43 tankōbon volumes by Shueisha between November 4, 2008 and December 31, 2016. Readers and fans of the series were able to submit ideas and designs for monsters and ingredients that appear in the manga.

Shimabukuro collaborated with Eiichiro Oda, author of One Piece, for a crossover one-shot of their series titled Taste of the Devil Fruit!!, which ran in the April 4, 2011 issue of Weekly Shōnen Jump. There is also a spin-off manga series titled Gourmet Academy Toriko, written by Toshinori Takayama and illustrated by Akitsugu Mizumoto. It was serialized in Saikyō Jump from December 3, 2010 to December 2, 2016, with the chapters collected into 9 tankōbon between April 4, 2012 and December 31, 2016.

At San Diego Comic-Con International 2009, Viz Media announced they had licensed Toriko for an English-language release. The first collected volume of Toriko was released on June 1, 2010, and Viz has released forty-three volumes as of August 7, 2018. The manga premiered in the February 2010 edition of a digital supplement available only to subscribers of Viz’s printed Shonen Jump magazine. When the printed magazine ended, Toriko was one of the launch titles of its digital successor Weekly Shonen Jump (originally named Weekly Shonen Jump Alpha), starting with chapter 171 in its debut issue on January 30, 2012. The Toriko and One Piece crossover was sent out free to annual subscribers of the magazine who signed up before April 30, 2012. Madman Entertainment released the first volume in Australasia on July 10, 2010, and have released twenty-six volumes as of April 10, 2015.

A book titled Toriko Gaiden was published on October 2, 2009, consisting of an interview with Mitsutoshi Shimabukuro, the 2007 Toriko one-shot, and other unrelated one-shots by the author. The guidebook Toriko Gourmet Hunting Book was released on November 4, 2011 and includes the original one-shot for Toriko from 2002 and the One Piece crossover chapter. A third companion book, listed as simply the 29.5 volume of Toriko, was released on June 4, 2014.

Reception

In 2009, Toriko was nominated for the second annual Manga Taishō award. The first and second collected tankōbon volumes, both released on November 4, 2008, were ranked 10th and 11th respectively on Oricon’s manga chart for their first week, with nearly 70,000 and 67,000 copies sold. It was the 10th best-selling manga series during the first half of 2011, with over 1.8 million copies sold. Toriko was the eleventh best-selling manga series of 2012, with over 3 million copies sold, and the thirteenth best of 2013, selling 2.8 million. The series has 18 million volumes in circulation as of November 2013. In 2011, Namco Bandai Games estimated Toriko would bring US$25.6 million in toys for the 2012 fiscal year.

Otaku USA’s Joseph Luster called Toriko “an absolute feast for fans of beasts”, not able to tell “whether Shimabukuro just comes up with everything on the spot or if it’s all meticulously planned out”, and said that the series’ charm is “how it effortlessly applies classic shonen tropes to such an outlandish world.” However, he commented that “The formula of Toriko is apparent right from the start in true shonen fashion[…] tougher and tougher creatures will quickly follow.” Deb Aoki writing for About.com also praised the imaginative beasts and monsters of the series, as well as the occasional informational bits on the true science of foods, but called the art “grotesquely goofy.”

Plot

Toriko is a Gourmet Hunter searching for the most precious foods in the world so he can create his full-course meal. A man with inhuman ability, he utilizes his incredible strength and knowledge of the animal kingdom to capture ferocious, evasive, and rare beasts to further his menu. He is accompanied by the weak and timid chef Komatsu, who, inspired by Toriko’s ambition, travels with him to improve his culinary skills and to find rare ingredients. Toriko and his friends often fight against the Gourmet Corps, who seek to take control of the world’s entire food supply and are looking for the highly sought-after ingredient GOD, which the legendary Gourmet Hunter Acacia used to end the war that took place five-hundred years before the series began.

 

Manga Monday- Gunparade March

Manga Monday- Gunparade March

Gunparade March is a Japanese video game that was later turned into a 3-volume manga and a 12-episode anime.
The video game, Kōkidō Gensō Gunparade March, was released on 28 September 2000, for the PlayStation. It was developed by Alfa System and published by Sony Computer Entertainment. Due to its creativity and attention to detail, it won the prestigious Seiun Award in 2001.
The manga by Hiroyuki Sanadura was serialized in the magazine Dengeki Daioh. The three volumes published by MediaWorks between 2001 and 2003 were translated by ADV Manga between 2004 and 2005.

Manga

The manga by Hiroyuki Sanadura was serialized in the magazine Dengeki Daioh. The three volumes published by MediaWorks between 2001 and 2003 were translated by ADV Manga between 2004 and 2005.

Plot

In 1945, World War II was abruptly ended when an alien race appeared on Earth and began to slaughter the human population. This alien force, known as the “Phantom Beasts” (or Genjyu in Japanese) had effectively taken over more than half of the Earth. The year is 1999 – 54 years later, mankind is still fighting to survive against the alien forces. Earth forces now use advanced mecha called Humanoid Walking Tanks (HWTs) to combat the invaders, but throughout the ordeal, far too many pilots have been killed in action. To ensure the future of the human race, the Japanese government enforced a student draft which recruited high school students to become HWT pilots. Gunparade March follows the lives of the 5121th Platoon, which consists mainly of drafted high school students and their struggle to defeat the Phantom Beasts and at the same time, lead a normal social life.

 

Manga Monday- Tokyo Ghoul

Manga Monday- Tokyo Ghoul

Tokyo Ghoul is a Japanese dark fantasy manga series written and illustrated by Sui Ishida. It was serialized in Shueisha’s seinen manga magazine Weekly Young Jump between September 2011 and September 2014, and it has been collected in fourteen tankōbon volumes as of August 2014. A sequel titled Tokyo Ghoul:re was serialized in the same magazine between October 2014 and July 2018, and was later collected into sixteen tankōbon volumes. A prequel titled Tokyo Ghoul [Jack] ran online on Jump Live.

Manga

Tokyo Ghoul started as a manga series, written and drawn by Sui Ishida. It began serialization in 2011’s 41st issue of Weekly Young Jump, published by Shueisha on September 8, 2011, and the final chapter appeared in 2014’s 42nd issue, released on September 18, 2014. The series has been collected in fourteen tankōbon volumes, released under Shueisha’s Young Jump Comics imprint between February 17, 2012, and October 17, 2014. The series has been licensed for an English release by Viz Media and the first volume was released on June 16, 2015.

In August 2013, a prequel spin-off manga titled Tokyo Ghoul [Jack] was released on Jump Live digital manga. The story spans 7 chapters and focuses on Arima Kishō and Taishi Fura 12 years before the events of Tokyo Ghoul. The manga features several characters from the main series including the above stated Kishō Arima, Taishi Fura, and future key characters Itsuki Marude and Yakumo “Yamori” Ōmori.

On October 17, 2014, a full-color illustration book known as Tokyo Ghoul Zakki was released along with the 14th and final volume of the manga. Zakki includes all promotional images, Volume covers and unreleased concept art with commentary by the creator Sui Ishida.

A sequel titled Tokyo Ghoul:re began serialization in 2014’s 46th issue of Weekly Young Jump, published on October 16, 2014. The series is set 2 years after the end of the original series and introduces a new set of characters. This series was concluded on July 19, 2018, with Volume 16.

Setting

Tokyo Ghoul is set in an alternate reality where ghouls, creatures that look like normal people but can only survive by eating human flesh, live amongst the human population in secrecy, hiding their true nature in order to evade pursuit from the authorities. Ghouls have powers including enhanced strength and regenerative abilities – a regular ghoul produces 4–7 times more kinetic energy in their muscles than a normal human, they also have several times the RC cells. A ghoul’s skin is resistant to ordinary piercing weapons, and it has at least one special predatory organ called a kagune (Japanese: 赫子), which it can manifest and use as a weapon during combat. Another distinctive trait of ghouls is that when they are excited or hungry, the color of their sclera in both eyes turns black and their irises red. This mutation is known as kakugan (赫眼, “red eye”).

A half-ghoul can either be born naturally as a ghoul and a human’s offspring, or artificially created by transplanting some ghoul organs into a human. In both cases, a half-ghoul is usually much stronger than a pure-blood ghoul. In the case of a half-ghoul, only one of the eyes undergoes the “red eye” transformation. Natural born half-ghouls are very rare, and creating half-ghouls artificially initially has a low success rate.

There is also the case of half-humans, hybrids of ghouls and humans that can feed like normal humans and lack a Kagune while possessing enhanced abilities, like increased speed and reaction speed, but shortened lifespans. Naturally born half-ghouls can also eat like normal humans or like full ghouls.

To hunt down the ghouls, several government-sponsored organizations such as the CCG were created worldwide, but struggle, due to the immense power of certain ghouls.

 

Manga Monday- The Devil Is a Part-Timer!

Manga Monday- The Devil Is a Part-Timer!

The Devil Is a Part-Timer! is a Japanese light novel series written by Satoshi Wagahara, with illustrations by Oniku (written as 029). ASCII Media Works has published 24 volumes since February 2011. The story is about a demon king named Sadao Maou seeking to conquer the world of Ente Isla, but when confronted by the Hero Emilia, he is forced to retreat through a gate that transports him to modern day Tokyo, Japan. To survive and find a way to return to Ente Isla, Satan gains part-time employment at a fast food restaurant called MgRonald. There have been two manga adaptations published by ASCII Media Works in Dengeki Daioh and Dengeki Maoh. A 13-episode anime adaptation produced by White Fox and directed by Naoto Hosoda aired between April and June 2013.

Manga

A manga adaptation, illustrated by Akio Hiiragi, started serialization in the February 2012 issue of ASCII Media Works’ shōnen manga magazine Dengeki Daioh. The first tankōbon volume was published on June 27, 2012. Yen Press began publishing the manga in North America in 2015. A spin-off manga series, illustrated by Kurone Mishima and titled The Devil Is a Part-Timer! High School!, began serialization in the July 2012 issue of ASCII Media Works’ Dengeki Maoh magazine. Its chapters have been compiled in five tankōbon volumes, released between January 26, 2013 and April 24, 2015. A four-panel manga anthology volume was published by ASCII Media Works on June 27, 2013.

Plot

The Demon Lord Satan seeks to conquer the world of Ente Isla by annexing its four continents with the help of his demon generals Alciel, Lucifer, Malacoda, and Adramelech. After being confronted by the hero Emilia and her companions, after they had killed Malacoda and Adramelech, Satan Jacob and Alciel escape the world of Ente Isla through a gate to modern Tokyo, Japan. However, due to the lack of magic in the modern contemporary world, both Satan and Alciel change into forms representing what they would look like if they were human. In order to survive, Satan takes a part-time job in a fast food restaurant named MgRonald, while Alciel serves as his houseman. One day, Satan, who now goes by Sadao Maō, meets a girl who is actually Emilia in the form of Emi Yusa. The story then unfolds and explores the personalities of each of the characters and their moral values. More characters show up from Ente Isla and they too face the new world dilemmas, often comically.

 

Manga Monday- Maria Holic

Manga Monday- Maria Holic

Maria†Holic is a Japanese manga series written and illustrated by Minari Endō, the author of Dazzle. The manga was first serialized in the Japanese seinen manga magazine Monthly Comic Alive on June 27, 2006, and is published by Media Factory. The manga was initially licensed by Tokyopop in North America and picked up by One Peace Books in 2016 after Tokyopop lost the license in 2011. It has also been released digitally by BookWalker, Kadokawa’s online digital shopfront. The first anime adaptation animated by Shaft aired in Japan between January and March 2009. A second anime season, Maria†Holic: Alive, premiered on April 8, 2011. Both seasons of the anime series have been licensed by Sentai Filmworks.

Plot

Maria Holic revolves around a high school girl named Kanako Miyamae, who is scared of boys and breaks out in hives if a boy touches her. During her second year of high school, she enrolls in an all-girls school hoping to find a female romantic partner. However, her ideal candidate, Mariya Shidō, turns out to be a sadistic cross-dressing boy.

Manga

Maria Holic is written and illustrated by Minari Endō. It started serialization in Media Factory’s seinen manga magazine Monthly Comic Alive on June 27, 2006. The manga concluded on November 27, 2014. 14 tankōbon volumes have been released in Japan, with the final volume being released on January 23, 2015. The manga was licensed by Tokyopop, and the first volume was available in September 2009. However, they only managed to publish the first six volumes before they lost the license. Kadokawa has released the entire series digitally in English via their website BookWalker. In 2016, One Peace Books started releasing a 3-in-1 omnibus version as well as individual volumes from volume seven onwards in English.

Drama CDs

A drama CD was released on July 25, 2008 and was produced by Frontier Works. A drama CD was also bundled with the limited edition of volume five of the manga.

 

Manga Monday- Nichijou

Manga Monday- Nichijou

Nichijou  (lit. Everyday) is a Japanese comedy manga series written and illustrated by Keiichi Arawi. The manga began serialization in the December 2006 issue of Kadokawa Shoten’s manga magazine Shōnen Ace, and was also serialized in Comptiq between the March 2007 and July 2008 issues. Kadokawa Shoten later published all chapters of the series in ten tankōbon volumes from July 2007 to December 2015. Set in a suburban Japanese town, Nichijou is populated by an ensemble set of characters, featuring moments from their everyday lives which alternate between the mundane and the strange, without much focus on a narrative.

The manga and anime series were initially licensed in North America by Bandai Entertainment in July 2011, but both releases were cancelled due to the company’s downsizing. The manga series was later licensed for publication in English by Vertical, with the first volume released in March 2016.

Manga

Nichijou began as a manga series written and illustrated by Keiichi Arawi. It uses a combination of normal comic format and four-panel comic strips. Originally, the manga was meant to be a short, stand-alone series which was serialized in Kadokawa Shoten’s Shōnen Ace magazine between the May and October 2006 issues. Starting with the December 2006 issue, the manga began regular serialization in Shōnen Ace, and was also serialized in Kadokawa’s Comptiq magazine between the March 2007 and July 2008 issues. The first tankōbon volume was released in Japan on July 26, 2007. The manga series ended with its tenth volume, which was released on December 10, 2015, along with a limited edition commemorating the tenth anniversary of the series, which included a 120-page companion book.

Bandai Entertainment initially licensed the manga in July 2011, but later cancelled its release by October due to downsizing of the company. JManga, an American digital manga platform, was able to release the first four volumes of the manga through its website before shutting down in May 2013. The manga series was later licensed for publication in English by Vertical, which released all ten volumes in 2016 and 2017. Beginning in January 2012, the manga has been released in Finland by Punainen Jättiläinen under the name Arki, which is Finnish for “weekday”. It was translated into Finnish by Antti Kokkonen. The Nichijou manga series sold 1,005,300 tankōbon volumes in 2011, reaching 49th place in the year’s best-selling manga series chart released by Oricon.

Plot

Nichijou follows the everyday lives of various people in the town of Tokisadame,[1] mainly focusing on the energetic Yūko Aioi, the bright and cheerful Mio Naganohara, the quiet and deadpan Mai Minakami, the anxious robot Nano Shinonome, her young creator the Professor, and a talking cat named Sakamoto, along with an ensemble cast of characters. Random and/or outlandish events regularly occur throughout the series, mainly through the mundane situations each character undergoes.

In the anime series, Nano receives the most prominent story arc out of all the characters; the first half of Nichijou pertains to her desire to become a student in high school, while the second half deals with her own fear of being revealed to be an android while at school with Yūko, Mio, and Mai. Vignettes which are mostly unrelated to the main focus of the series are placed throughout each episode, some of them adapted from Arawi’s manga Helvetica Standard.

 

Manga Monday- Drifters

Manga Monday- Drifters

Drifters is a Japanese manga series written and illustrated by Kouta Hirano. The manga started serialization in Shōnen Gahosha’s magazine, Young King Ours, on April 30, 2009. It centers on various historical figures summoned to an unknown world where their skills and techniques are needed by magicians in order to save their world from total destruction. An anime television adaptation aired between October 7, 2016 and December 23, 2016. A second season of the anime series has been announced.

Drifters is serialized in the Shōnen Gahosha Young King Ours magazine and sold under the same publisher in Japan. It is licensed in North America by Dark Horse Comics, in France by Éditions Tonkam, in Germany by Panini Comics, in Italy by J-POP, in Taiwan by Tong Li Comics and in Poland by Japonica Polonica Fantastica.

Plot

Shimazu Toyohisa, while involved at the Battle of Sekigahara, manages to mortally wound Ii Naomasa, but is critically injured in the process. As he walks from the field wounded and bleeding, Toyohisa finds himself transported to a corridor of doors, where a bespectacled man at a desk waits for him. This man, Murasaki, sends Toyohisa through the nearest door where he wakes up in another world. There, Toyohisa meets other great warriors like him who have been transported as well, to be part of a group known as “Drifters”.

This world contains both native humans and a number of fantastical races, including elves, dwarves, and hobbits. However, the world is at war, with the humans waging a losing conflict against another group of great warriors, the “Ends”, who wish to take over the world and kill all of the Drifters. Under the Ends’ command are many terrible creatures, including giants and dragons, which they use to destroy everything in their path. At the start of the series, the Ends’ army has control of the northern part of the continent, and are trying to invade the south through a pivotal fortress at the northernmost tip of a nation called Carneades. Meanwhile, the “Octobrist Organization”, a group of human magicians native to this world, attempts to bring together the many individual Drifters to save their world from the brutal Ends.

Drifters

The titular Drifters are heroes, leaders, and great warriors from different eras and cultures that have been brought to an unknown world by Murasaki, where they are meant to fight the Ends. A common element to the Drifters is that, although they are driven by violence, victory, and conquest, most of them are not cruel and do not tolerate the hurting of innocents. Unlike the Ends, the Drifters have no magic abilities unless they were born with them, and therefore must largely rely on their technology and tenacity to survive.
Murasaki 
A mysterious and calm bespectacled man who is responsible for the appearance of the Drifters, using them as a means to right the wrong of the Ends’ conquest of the unknown world. He is seen sitting in the middle of the door corridor, smoking, and reading a newspaper that gives news of the events relating to the Drifters. In the corridor, he is associated with and accompanied by light.
Shimazu Toyohisa
The leader of the Drifters. Historically, he died in 1600 during the Battle of Sekigahara. When he first arrived in the new world, he was critically injured, only to be brought to Nobunaga and Yoichi’s hideout by the young elves, Marsha and Mark. Although impulsive and reckless, Toyohisa possesses a fearless, determined, and chivalrous spirit, assisting the elves and dwarves by liberating them from the Orte Empire. Born and raised in a war-torn era, Toyohisa has a keen sense for battle and tactics, though he remains unaware of these talents himself. Toyohisa primarily uses a nodachi in battle, though he is seen carrying a wakizashi. He also carries a Tanegashima on the back of his waist, which he only uses when his swords are infeasible to use against his enemies.
Oda Nobunaga
A famous warlord who conquered most of Japan during Sengoku period. He is known for being the daimyō who took the first step of unification of the Japan, and the first Japanese military commander to utilize arquebuses in battles, using one as his main weapon in battle as a Drifter. Historically, he died during the Honnō-ji incident, the mutiny conducted by Akechi Mitsuhide. As a Drifter, he has only aged six months since arriving in the new world. Nobunaga is highly ambitious and cunning, desiring to establish a multiracial federation in the new world with Toyohisa as their leader. Nobunaga acts as the group’s military strategist.
Nasu no Yoichi
A very effeminate man of nineteen. His full name is Nasu Suketaka Yoichi, though he is simply known as Nasu no Yoichi. Although he lived hundreds of years before Nobunaga and Toyohisa, Yoichi is the youngest in the group. Born as the youngest of eleven siblings, Yoichi is a powerful warrior and military commander who served Minamoto no Yoshitsune during the Genpei War. Yoichi’s exploits were recorded throughout Japanese history, including in The Tale of the Heike, though Nobunaga notes that Yoichi acts very differently from these historical accounts. During the Genpei War, he was forced to commit several dishonorable acts by Yoshitsune, despite having a strong belief of Bushido. Now as a Drifter, Yoichi resolves to maintain his honorable nature, and he is the most level-headed of the trio. Yoichi acts as the group’s archer, killing fleeing enemies.
Hannibal Barca
A famous Carthiginian military commander. Now a Drifter and elderly, he is first seen arguing with Scipio Africanus over the latter’s “plagiarism” of Cannae at the Battle of Zama. Despite nearly being killed by the Black King’s army, Hannibal still insists that victory is still possible. After being separated from Scipio, Hannibal becomes depressed and senile, but he is still able to articulate battle tactics to his fellow Drifters via indirect means. He acts as Nobunaga’s military advisor since being left in Toyohisa’s group’s care.
Scipio Africanus
Hannibal’s Roman adversary during the Second Punic War. As a Drifter, he is as old as Hannibal, who he is seen constantly arguing with, claiming that “a winner takes all” since he won at Zama. Nevertheless, Scipio respects Hannibal greatly. Originally traveling with Hannibal and the Wild Bunch gang, he was accidentally separated from them and is currently in the company of Naoshi Kanno and Tamon Yamaguchi.
Butch Cassidy
Leader of the Wild Bunch gang. He, along with Sundance Kid, was transported from Bolivia, and is now fighting against the Black King and his armies. Unlike his partner, Butch has a hot-blooded and wild personality. He favors the use of firearms, particularly a pair of pistols, in battle.
Sundance Kid
A member of Butch Cassidy’s Wild Bunch. He, along with Butch, was transported from Bolivia, and is now fighting against the Black King and his armies. Unlike his leader, Kid possesses a calm and collected personality. Kid favors the use of firearms in battle, such as shotguns and a Gatling gun.
Naoshi Kanno
During a battle with the Black King, with the Drifters’ side under attack by dragons, Japanese World War II fighter pilot Naoshi Kanno is transported into the world in his plane. When the dragons’ attacks trigger memories of the bombing of Tokyo, he attacks the dragons in anger. His plane later crashed and he soon found himself worshiped as a god by a tribe of anthropomorphic dogs, only to be found by Scipio, who decides to use his status to unite the various anthropomorphic animal tribes under him to bolster the Drifters’ army. He does not initially trust Butch or Sundance Kid, as they are American, but Butch manages to convince him that they are Bolivian instead. He is addressed as Sugano Nao in the Dark Horse translation, an alternate reading of his name.
Tamon Yamaguchi
An admiral of the Imperial Japanese Navy during World War II. Tamon arrived in the new world along with the aircraft carrier Hiryū, and has since formed an uneasy alliance with the leaders of Gu-Binnen, a merchant guild, assisting them against the war with the Orte Empire by leading the guild’s griffin naval forces.

 

Manga Monday- Terra Formars

Manga Monday- Terra Formars

Terra Formars is a Japanese manga series written by Yū Sasuga and Michio Fukuda. Illustrated by Michio Fukuda. It is serialized in Shueisha’s magazine Weekly Young Jump since 2011. Also, a spin-off manga titled Terra for Police started on May 10, 2014 in Jump X.

Reception

It was number one on the 2013 Kono Manga ga Sugoi! Top 20 Manga for Male Readers survey. It was placed second in Zenkoku Shotenin ga Eranda Osusume Comic 2013, a 2013 ranking of the top 15 manga recommended by Japanese bookstores. It was nominated for the 6th Manga Taishō. The 6th volume reached the number one place on the Oricon weekly manga chart in the week of August 19–25, 2013, with 317,248 copies. As of February 2015, Terra Formars 11 first volumes have sold over 10 million copies. As of August 2015, the series had sold 13 million copies. As of April 2018, the manga had over 16 million copies in print.

Plot

In an attempt to colonize Mars, 21st century scientists are tasked with terraforming the planet. Their goal is to seed the planet with a modified algae to absorb sunlight and purify the atmosphere, and cockroaches, whose corpses spread the algae across the planet as they feed.

Five hundred years later, the first manned ship to Mars lands and its six crew members are attacked by giant mutated humanoid cockroaches with incredible physical strength, later labeled “Terraformars”; the crew is wiped out after sending a warning back to Earth. Two years later, BUGS II, a multinational expedition of genetically modified humans, is sent to collect 10 samples of both sexes of roaches, and exterminate the mutated bugs to take control of the red planet. Only two survivors manage to return to Earth, one swearing to return and avenge their fallen companions. As a third expedition is assembled questions are raised about the true origin of the Terraformars and their connection with an unknown disease afflicting mankind, the Alien Engine Virus, or A.E. Virus. To fight the Terraformars’ strength and agility, members of the second and third expedition undergo genetic modification to inherit the characteristics of other organisms, only possible after having a special organ implanted with a 36% chance of surviving the surgery itself.

The third expedition ends with most of its crew members killed as well, be it by fighting the Terraformars, or amongst themselves in the multi-sided conflict between the various factions aboard the ship, each with own opposing interests. Despite that, the few survivors manage to collect enough samples for the research on a cure to the A.E. Virus and return home. However, a new fight against the Terraformars begins when it is revealed that the creatures arrived on Earth long before, and after multiplying on an alarming rate and adapting themselves far better to their new environment than they did to their homeworld, they start their plan to take over the planet.