Aimless Wanderings 19: Holy shit! It’s on time!
Yes, my loyal Aimless Wanderers (all maybe 2 of you), I actually have this one coming out on time, when it’s supposed to, for your eye holes.
If the spring season had been in full swing, I’d be talking about that right now; but it’s not, so you get needlessly long titled manga!
Let’s start our adventure with Improper Capture Method of Classmates & Labyrinth, which seems to be a random selection of words from the plot synopsis. In this manga, we come into the(relatively) normal life of one Hazakura Motoya, one of the seven students at his high school. Why are there only seven? Because the school is going to be closed in two years, and apparently folks don’t like being in it, or something. Which makes it all the stranger when they receive three new transfer students. The mysterious transfers, all girls by the way, are members of a special branch of the military, the nature of which is classified; naturally, shit starts going down from this point onwards. Motoya and the three girls witness a strange tower rise from the earth on the school grounds and soon afterward, the military has the place on lockdown, with no one allowed in or out for an indefinite time frame.
This is one that I’m being purposefully vague about, because I don’t want to influence your opinions of certain plot points that I don’t know for sure how they’ll come into effect farther down the line. Rest assured, this manga has a solid story(a bit like Persona 3, to be honest) and a cast of some very interesting characters, each with their own motivations for doing what they’re doing, and more than enough secret agendas to go around. This is shaping up to be a very well done character driven manga.
I mentioned this one on the podcast as well, but hopefully, I can give a better summary in writing than I did there. Devil Survivor 2: The Animation(the manga) is a manga based off the Shin Megami Tensei universe RPG of the same name. The manga is being released, I expect, in order to run alongside the upcoming anime during the spring 2013 season. In this story, Japan has entered into a crisis that risks destroying the world. An alien species, called the Septentriones, has appeared and begun wreaking havock in devastating attacks on the country, with a new invader appearing each day of the week. 13 people, when faced with death, cut deals and become the “devil survivors” and gain control over devils, magical beings they can use to fight the alien incursion. If they cannot destroy all 7 Septentriones by the end of the week, a global calamity will be triggered; the clock is ticking…
Shin Megami Tensei, for those unfamiliar, was originally a loose continuum of RPGs that rarely took place in the same world as one another, though are connected in ways too convoluted to discuss in short form. The games have always been fairly popular, especially the Persona series, and Devil Survivor 2 will be only the second one, to my knowledge, that has had an animated series based off of it. I’m a fan of the SMT universe because while they’re generally entertaining fighting shows on their own, there is a consistent theme of introspection and acceptance of even the darkest parts of your being. You can enjoy them for their fighting aspect or you can dig deeper to find hidden meanings in almost every facet of them. This is a series that I believe I’ll always enjoy, and you probably will too.
Jinsei Hensachi 48 no Koukousei ga Kamisama ni Narimashita follows Atsushi, descendant of the guardian deity of the Heian period, or so the legend says. His childhood friend, Yuki, lives in the shrine in front of Atsushi’s home and her family has long been the traditional protectors of Atsushi’s. Unbeknownst to Yuki, however, Atsushi possesses an ability that allows him to deliver absolute orders to her. Wackiness shall ensue(I’m using the future tense because it’s only 1 chapter in as of this writing). It’s better than it sounds.
I suppose the biggest reason that I have enjoyed this manga so far is that it had the potential to go down the route of a borderline hentai ecchi series, but has remained wholesome. Atsushi is a decent person that has no desire to abuse his very real power over Yuki, and Yuki seems to be the only one of either family that doesn’t know about his power. I’ve enjoyed the writing as well, most notably a scene near the end of the chapter reminiscent of Shephard Book’s “Special Hell” speech from Firefly and I am waiting to see where the author takes the series with high hopes for the future.