Sunday, March 1, 2009

Akira - Volume 1

Addicting, addicting, addicting! I have already ordered the second volume of Akira on Amazon. Akira is action packed from the very start. The very first page tells the reader right off that a bomb exploded on Japan and the second and third page is a full picture of the explosion. By doing this, Otomo has gotten our attention immediately and we are drawn into the story from the get go.
I found that the panel perspectives give a very cinematic feel to the piece. For example on pages, 318 - 336, when Kaneda and Tetsuo meet up again I felt as though the camera was going back and forth between the two boys. This is achieved through subject to subject transitions and by having lots of different angles of the same scene.
I have to say I liked all of the characters in the story so far. Kaneda is a brat but in that charming way and Kei is cool, dangerous but feminine. And because I seem to always love the villain, I already have a soft spot for Tetsuo. With the spiky hair and a drug problem, I was constantly reminded of Sid Vicious. He also reminded me of Vegeta in DBZ, in his jealousy and competition with the main character. He is a great villain because like Kaneda the reader knows that he didn't used to be like this (Although we can see on page 24 when Tetsuo says, "This time you follow me, Kaneda!" that his jealousy of Kaneda has always been present) and that this, in a way, was brought upon him. We pity him to an extent. I feel that he will eventually lose his humanity completely but I haven't read the whole series yet so I could be wrong.
A great read. It didn't take long at all to get through the 359 pages with all that action! The story is very interesting too - a world after WWIII. I wonder how Akira will be different from the other number children. The nursery was another one of my favorite parts. Creepy and sad at the same time. Truly a masterpiece!

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