Golgo 13 10
July 3, 2009
After reading about Takao Saito in A Drifting Life and learning that Mickey Spillane changed his life and birthed Duke Togo, I couldn’t help but follow up with a volume of Golgo 13. I’ve actually got a good balance going tonight, because Golgo 13 is one of the manliest manga I can think of, and I’m also going to write about Otomen, the girliest manga I can think of, so… you know.
Unfortunately, I was kind of disappointed with this volume. Most of the volume is taken up by a story about a nuclear power plant outside LA going through a crisis just before the Olympics. This story isn’t bad… it’s actually pretty tight, but it just wasn’t to my liking for some reason. I’m not sure why, because all the insane elements are there: the crisis starts when a political bigwig somehow has the power to override the safety inspector’s orders and open the plant when it wasn’t ready and several major repairs and tests still needed to take place. It continues when a minor crisis flushes a bunch of honored guests out of the plant, including the governor and other politicians, and in the middle of the panic, Golgo 13 randomly appears and takes a shot. It builds when the safety inspector saw Golgo 13 take his shot and finds him at a local decontamination plant and hires him by robbing a bank that had been evacuated because of the crisis. Golgo 13 is needed to snipe a pipe in order to relieve pressure needed to cause a coolant system to engage. The ending has some of the best dialogue EVER between Golgo 13 and the safety inspector.
Yeah, it’s one of those types of stories. It just keeps building on itself, but I guess I was soured on it initially because the premise of a safety inspector being overridden so abruptly was less realistic than I would expect in Golgo 13 (which sounds weird, given some of the insane things that have taken place, but still).
There’s a strange scene at the decontamination camp where a woman is being tackled in order to get her head shaved, which needs to happen because “Mr. Geiger Counter” says so. I think I found it more disturbing than it was intended to be.
The last story didn’t make much sense to either me or my roommate, but involves two assassination attempts and some Vegas mob-type stuff. I don’t really have much to say about that one, it was a simple story.
The material in the back included an interview with Takao Saito, where he mentions some things that make what characters say about him in A Drifting Life sound potentially true. Take that as you will.