[Manga] FLCL

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[Manga] FLCL

Postby doomed1 » Wed Apr 18, 2007 8:30 pm

Title: FLCL
Story: Gianax/Hajime Ueda
Art:Hajime Ueda
Publisher (US): Tokyopop
Genre: Comedy, Science Fiction, Shounen
Age Rating: Teen (13+)
Series Length: 2 volumes

This is a series I've been meaning to review for a while. I've had the books for almost a year now, and so I thought i would share.

Story
If you've seen the story before, you know the drill. A moody, cynical 6th grade boy in a quiet town, who's a bit involved with his brother's old highschool GF, gets his life turned upside down when a crazy lady riding a Vespa and wielding a bass smacks him in the head. Okay, so maybe it's not that familiar, though I'm sure most of you have at least seen the show and its crazy antics.

If you're interested in a strait, true-to-form adaptation of the the original OAV series, you're in for a bit of a disappointment. the only things that remain the same are the names, the places, some plot devices, and the base plot. I have heard some hate for it in the past, mainly because they think that these two small volumes are trying to contain the whole 6 episodes of content. this is hardly the case. If you page through the book, you'll notice that a few locals remain the same, but there are alot of different places, noot to mention that there are a couple of charcters that dont make much more than a one page appearance. *cougheyebrowscough* Instead, they decided to develop other characters more fully. For example, the class rep Ninamori was developed far beyond what she was in the show and got significantly more panel time with a larger role. Furthermore, the whole medical mechanica scandle is hardly even there, if at all. Instead, it's treated less as a coming of age story with a conspirisy theory about the rise of corporation and incessent parody, but more of a coming of age story with some insight to human nature, parody aside.

I had originally read it before I had seen the OAV, so it was my initial experience of FLCL, but because of that, I appreciate the manga more. However, even if you have seen the series, this is worth a look if for anything it's story is a tangent to the OAV. Overall, the story's really nothing special, but I still like the manga ending best.

Art
If there was any other reason I picked this up, it would be because of the art. Hajime's style is a breath of fresh air in the land of rehashed character design. Each character has a distinctive look and feel, and Hajime's bold, minimalist style purveys the mood of FLCL perfectly. Gianax couldn't have picked a better artist. The style can put pages into pure chaos, but it's charming and lovable and worth looking back over to get where things are going. The action is dynamic and well displayed, and overall, its just fun to look at. Definately worth the look.

Translation
This was pretty good. No Ingrish here. They even translated the small asides in tiny print and the crazy shouts in loud, chaotic print.

Msc.
What i really liked was the models, figurines, and plushes used between chapters. Considering what I've heard about the author, it's likely that he made them himself. A nice touch if i may say so.

Also, I noticed there was little extra stuff at the back or the front. There was a nice little intro to get you into the mood for the story, and a preview for Volume 2 at the end of Vol. 1. No translation notes, no info about the author, not even any adds for other Tokyopop stuff. It really doesn't hurt the story, but it certainly doesn't help it.

Final Word
I'll be blunt: this manga isn't for everyone. Those who like the clean look of CLAMP or manga studios, this is not for you. Those who don't like to see the FLCL formula messed with, this also is not for you. However, there's something very distinct about this manga. If you're open for something new and willing to put down $20 for a couple of volumes, i can say that it will make a good addition to your library.

I give it a 4... out of 5
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Postby Veoryn87 » Thu Apr 19, 2007 10:21 am

I looked at the first few pages and really hated the art style.  I'm assuming it's the same all the way through.  I like that it's not the regular generic anime style, but I just couldn't get into it.
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Postby doomed1 » Fri Apr 20, 2007 11:52 pm

damn, i loved it. u must be such a mainstreamer ;)

i'll put up my Q-ko-chan review soon as well.
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Postby Veoryn87 » Sat Apr 21, 2007 1:00 pm

doomed1 wrote:u must be such a mainstreamer ;)


Read my post again.  :wink:
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Postby Aion-the-Sinner » Sat Apr 21, 2007 8:12 pm

I've read it, had a good art style... but I couldn't stand the ending, made less sense then the anime's...

... damn cats...
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