Manga – The Other White Meat

Welcome back for another review of the Naruto and Bleach ongoing manga series. Before we launch into those reviews I’d like to humbly suggest a show that I watched a while back and really got into. I didn’t see every episode, but I think this anime really had potential after the first 3-4 that I did get a chance to check out. The anime I’m talking about is…Eden of the East. The premise is that Japan suffers a massive terrorist attack, where miraculously no one dies. In the background of all this the story starts at the White House in Washington DC. A young Japanese girl on a field trip by the name of Saki Morimi is about to meet a strange boy named Akira Takizawa, who gets her out of trouble with the security there. He has somehow lost his memory but has a phone linked to a bank account with 8.2 billion yen in it. As the story goes on we find that certain individuals have been selected to complete an impossible task. Use the money however they want, but when it is out, they die. If one of the individuals selected can somehow manage to fix Japan (although what “fix” means is vague at best) they get to live. Various twists and turns take place from there that made this a really interesting show to me, and if you can stand something with some action but more of an intriguing storyline, you might like it as well. Read on for the manga review… BLEACH This week finds us back in Hueco Mundo with the main hero of the show, Ichigo. His friends are down for the count. Chad and Renji, Ichigo’s best friend from the real world and probably best Shinigami friend, are down. Rukia is in dire straights as she uselessly struggles against Yammy, one of the last remaining Espada to be alive. Ichigo’s other friends from home are still healing and recovering from near death after Ichigo’s last battle. Just when it seems that Rukia is about to be dashed against the ground, Ichigo returns to fight. He lures Yammy away from the others through a series of moves. Once he feels that it is safe to fight, he releases his hollow side. In a frightening twist, Ichigo’s hollow mask appears to have changed, and his powers have increased dramatically. For you DBZ fans out there…the radical growth in Ichigo’s powers seems like his next SSJ level. He never learns a new move…he just gets stronger. Honestly it’s getting a little boring. This issue ends with a sad eyed Ichigo flooring the giant Espada with one blow. Somehow I doubt the fight is over, it never is. NARUTO The Fourth Great Ninja War or some such nonsense has been declared by Uchiha Madara, one of the oldest and most powerful ninja in the world. Madara controls seven Bijuu, incredibly dangerous and powerful creatures making him a formidable force. Think of them as giant demons along the lines of the Balrog from Lord of the Rings. The Kage’s settle on forming the first ever Shinobi Alliance to battle this nemesis. Konoha’s hokage however has fled the scene, and cannot be trusted. Gaara of the Sand, one of Naruto’s closest companions if only because he was once a jinchuuriki or host, agrees to deliver the message to Konoha. The Kage’s discuss using the last two demons, the Hachibi and Kyuubi, as military forces and seem split on using them versus protecting them from Madara. Just before leaving one of the lieutenants gives an ominous warning about one of the remaining Akatsuki named Hoshigaki Kisame. Kisame has the same level of charka energy as a jinchuuriki and should not be underestimated. One of the jinchuuriki has long since escaped the akatsuki and has been hidden this whole time training. Apparently he is training in Enka, some weird form of ninja arts based around music or something. It is sort of silly but there is no doubt that Killer Bee, the Raikage’s brother, is one of the more powerful men on the planet right now. His training is interrupted by a sudden presence. In the meantime, Naruto has been contemplating Sasuke and training to hold his Sage mode longer then ever when the sudden arrival of his friends Sakura (future girlfriend maybe? Who knows…), Sai (fellow squad member), Lee (funny guy with no ninjitsu skill but crazy taijitsu or hand to hand skills) and Kiba (tracker with an animal companion) arrive. Sakura wants to talk of course…they always do. In the meantime the presence searching for Killer Bee and his Kyuubi Hachibi is revealed to be Kisame. He is going to fight the man who eluded Sasuke’s entire team one on one. I have a scary feeling he is going to win too… I’m not sure what the message at the end of the manga saying “Next Issue, Naruto will be taking a break so that the author can collect data. We hope you understand,” means. I’m assuming that it means the manga could be going on break so they can plot out the fourth ninja world war. I suppose we will find out next time, I may have to dig deep and review another series. Happy reading!