Comics / Manga

20th Century Boys: Volume 22 manga review

By Leroy Douresseaux
December 24, 2012 - 14:45

20th Century Boys Volume 22 cover image is courtesy of

Rated “T+” for “Older Teen”

In 2014, Neo Tokyo is a thriving, multiethnic metropolis.  By 2018, the world is in the third year of the Friendship era.  Tokyo is a walled city and home of the worldwide cult known as the “Friends.”  The cult’s leader, the “Friend,” is now President of the World and is plotting the final extinction of mankind.  However, Kenji Endo, the returning hero, leads a vagabond army toward Tokyo.  Meanwhile, Kanna Endo and her friends prepare for the final battle.

In Naoki Urasawa’s 20th Century Boys, Vol. 22 (entitled The Beginning of Justice), Kenji faces the Friend, who is not the original Friend (Fukube).  But this is the Friend who is calling Kenji the “evil villain” and who is calling for justice.  Meanwhile, Kanna and Kenji’s friends try to save Tokyo from a deadly virus delivered by flying saucers?!

THE LOWDOWN:  This, the 22nd volume of the 20th Century Boys manga, is the end of the series, as it makes way for a “sequel” in 2013 as 21st Century Boys (originally published in 2007 in Japan).  The end is similar to Naoki Urasawa’s Monster in that not all the myriad plotlines are resolved.  Also, though the conflict is mighty, the adversary’s reason for his struggle is as bemusing as it is amusing.  Like Monster, however, it is the journey rather than the destination, although there is a happy ending.  Still, the new series likely will pick up the threads left dangling here.

POSSIBLE AUDIENCE:  Comic book readers looking for the best comics will want Naoki Urasawa’s 20th Century Boys on their reading list.


Rating: A+ /10

Last Updated: August 31, 2023 - 08:12

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