I Shall Never Return 2
January 18, 2009
This ventures into more uncomfortable territory. Gang rape territory. Worst of all, it seems like the event is basically brushed off right after it happens, though the men who commit the crime do wind up in jail. Actually, it serves as a warning to Ken that, try as he might to get away from his old life and live well, the ghosts of it will haunt him for a long time afterwards. It’s yet another parallel to Let Dai, actually, though once again, Let Dai handles it a little better.
Most of the volume focuses on Ritsuro and his school trip to Osaka. Of course much effort is made to have the two boys agonize about being apart, but the real purpose of the trip seemed to be to bring Ritsuro and the guy who was in love with Ken closer together. That guy lays some of his ghosts to rest while on the trip, and seems more willing to deal with Ritsuro as a person. Nothing happens between the two, but Ken is going away to Singapore, so there’s always next time.
Ken’s trip to Singapore is to visit his mother, but he figures he might like to try a new place where nobody knows about him from his past. He can’t leave Ritsuro for too long, of course, so this is just a trial period. But two weeks is a lot longer than the four days that Ritsuro was gone. Methinks bad things will happen to both of them during the time.
Despite the fact that the series ventured into dark territory, I like the relationship between the two main characters enough that I’ll probably keep reading. But if things get much worse than what happened in this volume, I may have to quit.