Banana Fish 17

May 20, 2009

Thankfully, the events last volume did not end with a loop like most of the other hostage situations have, where someone is captured and a bunch of other people go in after them, only to be captured and/or ambushed and captured later.  Again, that’s probably the only problem with the series I have at this point, and… while yes, there are hostages, things didn’t exactly play out like they always have.  In fact, things went down much differently than I expected.

Ash is kept as a prisoner by the mercenaries, and the leader treats him quite horribly.  He eventually gets his revenge on other members of the squad and escapes.  This part is quite brief, but pretty powerful.  The abuse stuff hasn’t come up in a long time (or at least, hasn’t been done in awhile, he and Max were talking about it a volume or two ago), so seeing it happen while the man begs him to be one of his lieutenants is kind of surreal and disturbing.

Later, we get some dissension between all the gangs that have come together to help Ash.  Ash has control of the situation, but Sing’s brother Lao doesn’t like being led by Ash, the murderer of Shorter, even after Sing admits that he can never be half the leader Ash is.  Yut-Lung’s plan for the Chinatown gang is revealed, and we find out that part of Lao’s problem is that he doesn’t want to do the thing Yut-Lung asks of him.  So Yut-Lung has two other people do it.  Two other people that are stupid enough to believe that they can shoot Eiji right in front of Ash and not be totally slaughtered.

It happens, and the aftermath is totally intense and insane.  Ash completely flies off the handle.  Blanca realizes what Yut-Lung is up to, and amazingly shows up to intervene, but can only stop Ash from rampaging with a bullet wound to the abdomen.  This was easily up there with Shorter’s death and Yut-Lung’s hostage scene in the museum as one of the best scenes in the series.  There’s also a really great follow-up scene where Ash, all alone in a room, begs God to take his life instead of Eiji’s.  Powerful stuff.

Yut-Lung tries to justify himself later by saying that he’s got just as many problems as Ash, and it’s not fair that Ash has Eiji to calm him down.  This is kind of a poor motive, but I guess you just can’t have everything.

Next volume: saving Max Lobo & Co from the mental institution!  Hopefully they won’t be dosed with Banana Fish in the meantime!

One Response to “Banana Fish 17”


  1. […] Boy (Manga Maniac Cafe) Connie on vol. 3 of 20th Century Boys (Slightly Biased Manga) Connie on vol. 17 of Banana Fish (Slightly Biased Manga) Connie on vol. 4 of Black Jack (Slightly Biased Manga) Lissa Pattillo on […]


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