Nabari no Ou 7

August 25, 2011

Yuhki Kamatani – Yen Press – 2011 – 14 volumes

I read the first volume of this series, and I remember it being a slightly silly ninja adventure/fighting manga. The story was about convincing Miharu, who was born with secret ninja arts in his body, to join up with a specific ninja clan, or take any interest whatsoever, and it was kinda cute. I didn’t think I would have much trouble diving back in, but it turns out I was wrong. There are about a thousand characters wandering around in this volume, and at least three or four different interests at work among them.

The humor is completely gone, which I found crushing. Instead of being completely indifferent, Miharu is drawn up into the battle with a friend who wants Miharu to use his secret ninja arts to kill him. Miharu has aligned himself with Yoite, apparently, but during this volume there is a struggle and Miharu can no longer carry out Yoite’s wishes and he uses the secret arts anyway and it’s all so sad and serious, in addition to being very complicated.

But the focus wasn’t often on Miharu, who was my horse in this race, so I found my attention drifting when the action cut around to about three different battle scenes full of characters who didn’t really do anything except spout ideology at one another and fight. Much of the action here was a wash for me, which is my fault for jumping in at what is clearly the climax to a longer story arc. But it can’t be more than a volume or two long, because I only skipped over five volumes. I’m a little hard-pressed to believe that all these characters and their viewpoints have been given equal time and fleshed out appropriately. But maybe I’m wrong.

The actual climax to this story, which involves the elderly head of the school the characters are fighting in, was pretty interesting. There’s a twist involving the motivations of the villains, and a character turns out not to be what she seemed, et cetera. These parts were interesting, even without having read or known anything prior to this volume.

Ninja action isn’t really my thing, especially when it involves a boatload of characters in volume seven. I didn’t really like this volume, but I also skipped over quite a bit of story, and can admit it’s not really for me. I was sad to see the humor I enjoyed in the first volume had vanished, but maybe that was just because of the story climax. If you like shounen action, this is definitely status quo.

This was a review copy provided by Yen Press.

2 Responses to “Nabari no Ou 7”

  1. ZeroSD Says:

    I remember starting on the first volume, finding it fun, then… quiting on either the second or third because the humor, like you said, dropped out.

  2. Connie Says:

    Good to know. That’s a shame, it was the best part.

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