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Monday, November 2, 2009

Momogumi Plus Senki vol. 1 Impression

Momogumi Plus Senki volume 1 manga
To be an epic hero, one of legend and myth, how sweet would that be! Well, for Yuuki not so much, a tale told in Tokyopop’s Momogumi Plus Senki volume 1. Yuuki is not exactly and epic hero, but he’s ones reincarnation and to say things are not as great as you’d expect is an understatement. Death awaits Yuuki unless … well, let’s take a look.

Bad things seem to follow Yuuki, accidents that seem anything but. As he enters his new school Yuuki learns he is the reincarnation of the hero Momotaro of Japanese folklore. As the reincarnation Yuuki will die on his 18th birthday, that is unless he releases the curse put upon him, Momotaro, by demons in his past life. He’s not alone in his quest as his animal companions have also been reincarnated and are students in his school, Yukishiro (pheasant), Masahiko (dog) and Sawa (Monday). They each take on their animal forms, Dog, Monkey and Pheasant with the use of mask. These Jyuki will protect Yuuki as he must break the demons curse through two methods. Beheading the demons or fulfilling their conditions. From changing a song to being a friend the conditions vary from demon to demon and Yuuki has a few encounters right away. With his powerful sword … pen and trusty Jyuki it’s time for Yuuki to break the curse, or die at the age of 18.

Here in the States we don’t grow up with too much folklore from overseas which is really a shame as this is where Eri Sakondo has crafted a great story that is very new to most Westerners. The tale of Momotaro is so rich and enjoyable on its own. The legends are retold in the manga in cliff notes version by characters to explain the encounters Yuuki has, which is a great service to noobs to the tales. Resolving this curse gives the story a solid background and future as well as ending, which really is important for fans looking to get into a new series and can’t invest tens of volumes. That being said the little quirks in story such as resolving demon conditions, funny conditions at that, as well as how the whole school is reincarnated folks, who know they are reincarnated is fun and original. The school store has weapons, items for each reincarnation as they awake, it’s really interesting. So there is much more to the story and it mixes action and character development very well. The art is solid, just great to read but don’t expect too detailed backgrounds, it’s all about the characters, their emotions and different looks which is a good thing.

Overall Momogumi Plus Senki is hot, both in story and art, and worth any manga fans time. Give it a spin, pay attention to the age notice, and enjoy.

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