James's Reviews > Children of the Sea, Volume 1

Children of the Sea, Volume 1 by Daisuke Igarashi
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Jan 19, 12

bookshelves: manga, seinen, drama, reviewed
Recommended for: Very Few

So, with Borders going out of buisness, I visited on the day when 80% of the store was empty and everything was 90% off. I essentially cleared off their manga bookcase which wenty from FIVE HUGE THINGS, to three small bookshelves that could fit in my room. And even those weren't filled, all of them probably could've fit on one. But enough of that, I basically took all the manga they had left figuring I could've selled the ones I didn't like, but one really caught my eye: Children of the Sea. It originally cost 15 dollars, meaning I only paid 1.50 for it. And to give you a bit of pretext: I'm not entirely sure I got my 1.50 out of it.

So yeah, you can already see where this review is going. But let's discuss. The story opens with this old woman talking to her son, saying 'hey wanna hear a tale about the sea?' While she and her presumably ten or so year old son are in the middle of the ocean. Now with a title like 'Children of the Sea' I could already sense the 'Inconvenient Truth' message that was going to be shoved down my throat. We then flashback to when Ruka [that's the old woman] was 13. And right away she's just this huge bitch. She gets tripped in a game of soccer and how does she respond? She elbows a girl in the face so hard, that the girls nose breaks and she goes unconcious. Now, this isn't uncommon in manga, the protagonist starting out by doing something badass. But, since it happened off panel, and it's not justified in anyway, we right away hate the girl that's suppose to be our main character.

Then she broods for about 20 pages, which is always nice, I love it when my main character sucks and is brooding. Then she meets thiese kids, Umi and Sora. Now, right away I don't like almost any of our main characters. Ruka is a brooding bitch for almost the entire volume, which is twice as thick as the standard size manga. Meaning we go through several chapters were Ruka doesn't change. Then Umi and Sora who have these vague, undefined powers. But more so than no backstory, these kids are also to perfect. Whenever the author seems to try to write in imperfections (they steal a boat and Ruka actually tries to stop them) they're inconsequential which means the kids didn't learn anything. Yeah, they're flawed to an extent, but that's overlooking the fact that the boat Umi and Sora 'stole' belongs to the aquarium that they work at.

Oh, this is were it gets good, all three of these kids work at this aquarium. And again, vague, undefined supernatural things happen at this aquarium. There's no movement in the plot at all in this volume all that really happens is that Ruka works at the aquarium and she meets these two kids. There's this old man that I like at the museum but we only see him twice in this large volume of manga. And although it's slightly subtle about the whole environmental message, it's constantly beat into you page by page so it suddenly becomes less than subtle. If had one positive thing to say about this manga it would be that the art is nice, but you can cover trash with gold, it's still going to be trash.

So let's recap: bad main characters, no plot, a message crammed down your throat, and undefined supernatural occurances.

To give the manga credit it is senien which typically move slower than shonen, but that doesn't exscuse the fact that so little happened and nothing attatched me to these characters.

Rating: Two I'M ON A BOATS' out of ten
Reccomendation: Read it on mangafox if you must, but gaurentee you'll drop after chapter one.
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