By Leroy Douresseaux
August 7, 2009 - 20:54
|O-Parts Hunter Volume 17 cover image is courtesy of barnesandnoble.com.|
Rated “T+” for “Older Teen”
An “Ancient Race,” said to have originated on the “Blue Planet,” left powerful relics on the world of Ascald. Mankind battles over these relics, called “O-Parts,” and an O.P.T. (O-Parts Tactician) has the ability to release and use the power within an O-Part. A young man named Jio Freed is a very powerful O.P.T., but he also has a monstrous demon inside him – Satan, the ultimate weapon of the Kabbalah. With his partner, the treasure hunter Ruby Crescent, Jio seeks to gather as many O-Parts as he can.
O-Parts Hunter, Vol. 17 opens with the aftermath of Jio and his crew: Ruby, Ball, Kirin, Cross, May, Amidaba, Jajamaru, Jojomaru, and Zero being swallowed by Nehema, the whale-like, monstrous Demon Recipe. They make their way through the various ruins and monuments inside Nehema – a perilous journey that finds them facing obstacles and riddles that they must solve or die. The heart of this perilous journey is the reunion of Kirin and his younger twin brother and nemesis, Kajuku. Their epic battle also reveals the reason for the enmity between these siblings.
THE LOWDOWN: The 17th volume of O-Parts Hunter is, like previous volumes, filled with inventive and disturbing images and creatures, but the story here has an odd, awkward pace. What saves it is the Kirin/Kajuku battle. An epic worthy of the best fights in Naruto and Bleach, this brother vs. brother struggle, with its Biblical undertones, is filled with heartrending drama and furious passion. The two chapters that make up this family reunion are examples of how creator Seishi Kishimoto (the twin brother of Naruto creator, Masashi Kishimoto) can sometimes take O-Parts Hunter to the heights of fight comic greatness, which he doesn’t do consistently.
POSSIBLE AUDIENCE: Readers who enjoy shonen manga filled with ingeniously designed characters and exotic locales will enjoy O-Parts Hunter.