The overpopulation of Earth reaches the breaking point by the 26th century, forcing humanity to find new frontiers to call home. Knowing that this time would come, Earth has been in a centuries-long terraforming process of Mars, introducing moss and cockroaches to hasten the transformation. Three missions travel to Mars to see the results of that terraforming, and what they discover is the horror called Terraformars, giant humanoid cockroaches.
As Terra Formars, Vol. 21 (Chapters 34 to 42) opens, the Terraformars have infested Japan and the war to save Earth from these alien is on. For decades, scientists have been implanting the Terraformars “M.O.” (“Mosaic Organ”) in humans, which allows humans to mutate into any number of forms, adapting the abilities of a number of Earth animals and insects.
Plus, former Japanese prime minister, Ichiro Hiruma, and Shokichi Komachi (adapted to the Asian Giant Hornet) of the Chinese military have a meeting of the minds that is tense enough to become a meeting of fisticuffs. Meanwhile, the biggest meeting of all will bring “the Invoker,” the Terraformar leader of Earth, and Chinese President Liu Zhou together. Will this coming together bring peace or...?
THE LOWDOWN: I had not read the Terra Formars manga in over two years. I think Vol. 16 was the last one I read. My VIZ Media rep sent me a copy of the new volume, and I, surprisingly, did not have trouble catching up.
Terra Formars Graphic Novel Volume 21 opens with Earth fighting a full on invasion by the Terraformars. When I was reading the series on a regular basis, I did get the idea that the Terraformars would end up on Earth – via their own machinations or because of human intrigue. In fact, the last time I read this series, the Terraformars were already popping up on Earth.
Writer Yu Sasuga and artist Ken-ichi Tachibana are delightful in this total war. Sasuga offers that the Terraformars existence is the fault of human intervention and that war is what drives human technological progress. John Werry's excellent translation and English adaptation emphasizes the theme of humanity being its own worse enemy. The lettering by Annaliese Christman explodes across the page, conveying the non-stop action of Terra Formars. Yes, this series is still strong.
I READS YOU RECOMMENDS: Fans of seinen manga and monster comics will want to try the VIZ Signature title, Terra Formars.