By Leroy Douresseaux
October 13, 2008 - 13:07
|The above cover image courtesy of barnesandnoble.com.|
Rated “T+” for “Older Teen”
In the not too distant future, on the world of Ascald, mankind battles over “O-Parts,” powerful relics from an ancient civilization. An O.P.T. (O-Parts Tactician) has the ability to release and use the power within an O-Part, using his “Spirit,” to release the power. Jio Freed, a young boy with a tragic past, dreams of world domination, but he doesn’t realize that he is a very powerful O.P.T. with a monstrous demon inside him. With his partner, the treasure hunter Ruby Crescent, Jio seeks to gather as many O-Parts as he can.
In O-Parts Hunter, Vol. 12, Jio takes on the monstrous Lord Ikaros in an attempt to save Ruby, whom Ikaros has captured and is torturing as a ploy to bring out the beast in Jio. Meanwhile, the Stea Government and the Zenom Syndicate make their next moves.
THE LOWDOWN: The creator of O-Parts Hunter is Seishi Kishimoto, the twin brother of Masashi Kishimoto, creator of Naruto. While O-Parts Hunter does have a few similarities to Naruto, it’s more like Tite Kubo’s Bleach, Katsuro Hoshino’s D.Gray-Man, and Yellow Tanabe’s Kekkaishi, in that all four titles feature a range of imaginative creature, tech, and environmental design that seem as they couldn’t be the creation of single imaginations. O-Parts Hunter, however, is far darker and perhaps a bit more occult than these other titles, and at times, it’s so unsettling and creepy, which may be why it’s something of a cult favorite and not a breakout hit.
POSSIBLE AUDIENCE: A sort of Naruto meets Lovecraft or like a shounen manga (boys’ comics) as imagined by artist Robert Williams (“Appetite for Destruction”), O-Parts Hunter is an acquired taste, but one to be savored.