Saturday, January 19, 2013

Manga Review: Baku by Hakase Mizuki

Rating (Out of 5): ~3-3.5
Publisher: Tokyopop
Spoilers?: Minor-ish?
Volumes: 1

Goodreads Synopsis:

Takeshi Uesugi knows he's not an ordinary sixteen year old boy. His mother thinks he's not human and it's driving her crazy. She can't be trusted not to abuse him, and lives in a mental institution. When Takeshi agrees to model for his father's friend, his face on billboards brings a lot of attention. Suddenly there are many people taking an interest in him, some with very unusual powers, just like Takeshi.

Available on Amazon.


This was a really interesting, unique manga. I’m not even too sure what to say about it. It wasn’t amazing in my eyes, but it was definitely not bad, and I generally enjoyed it.
While reading this, I couldn’t help thinking, several times, that there wasn’t going to be a very good ending, what with so much happening and so little pages, but it actually turned out rather well. It wasn’t rushed.
The artwork is really neat. At first, I didn’t like it very much, but it grew on me. At times, there are a lot of blank spaces, and the faces are too long, but at others, it’s really done well and is just really pretty.
The first three chapters were the Baku storyline, about a boy that was reincarnated, and his previous self was a, um, powerful demon-type person who took in two orphans, and he made them promise to look for his new self and remind him of who he was, were he to die. And the boy reincarnate isn’t having a very happy life, what with causing strange things to happen without meaning to, his mother being rather crazy, but it takes him a bit to get used to what he now is, plus having to fight an old enemy.
Then, the last two chapters are a different storyline, called Mephisto, about a guy who gets rid of demons or ghosts or whatever. He lives with two twin girls, his sisters, and a friend, a guy, who is currently, maybe temporarily, staying with them. Plus, a little rodent lives on his hat, and a little creature lives in his suitcase. The whole dynamic between this group was my favorite part; they were all just such neat, different characters, and I would have liked to get to know more about them.
The plot line in that story, was him saving this one woman, and then finding this doll who was buried and just wants to go back to the little girl who loved her, only for the girl to not care about the doll in the least. That was a rather sad, bittersweet story.
This whole book, from the characters to the plot to the artwork, was all very different, very unique. It didn’t take me very long to get into it, and I rather enjoyed it. This is the artist of The Demon Ororon series, which I didn’t know when I first picked it up, but now I might actually pick up that short series, if given the chance.

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